Monday, September 30, 2013


I found the above on Facebook and it made me laugh.
It also describes my weekend and where I am in my newest manuscript!
I've reached 70,000 words, and instead of moving forward, I'm going backwards and doing a little revising.
Frustrating at times, but it's also exciting when I come across scenes that I know are perfect just the way they are. 
Will I reach my goal of releasing this book in January? 
I'm not sure. 
And I'm not going to rush it.
I've never written a book and released it in six months. Can I do it?

The question makes me ponder over my story.

The sequence of events towards publication went a little like this:
I spent one year writing Sierra.

Then I spent one year writing Joshua's Folly.

Then I spent two months writing For Nick. (Yes, that one bled onto the page very quickly. However, the final version hardly resembles the original.)

I sent out query letters here and there. I received my fair share of rejection letters.
I wasn't ready. Frankly, neither were my manuscripts.

Next, I spent about six months writing Lancaster House.

Did I try to get published?
I moved on and wrote I Have People. That one took at least eight months.

Then I finally queried Lancaster House and was signed by an agent!
Excitedly, I wrote the sequel to Lancaster House, The Middle Aisle, in about six months.

Lancaster House, however, did not sell.
My hopes plummeted.
In spite of this, I was encouraged by my agent's enthusiasm over Lancaster House. He loved it.
I spent the  next year rewriting and editing I Have People and Joshua's Folly. My agent advised and I rewrote.
It was a year of learning, a year of cutting my teeth, and I don't regret it for a moment.
Sadly, my agent felt there was nothing more he could do for me. My brand of 'clean romance' wasn't selling at the moment.
We parted ways. It was a dark day for me.

Image courtesy of [Master isolated images] /

That's when I decided to self publish.
I spent six months revisiting Sierra and For Nick, editing them with a fine tooth comb.
Then and only then did I feel ready to publish.
Still, each book went through final edits, over and over, till I felt they were ready to see the light of day.
I like to write a book, then move on and go back to it later. With the passing of time, I see it with fresh eyes and I see what edits need to be done.

Back to the original question. Can I write a book and publish it in six months?
That remains to be seen. I'm used to having time to EDIT, EDIT, EDIT.

I'm so impressed with authors who can put good books out quickly. They are amazing.

However, I've learned a lot since my first attempt at writing a book. My current  manuscript is a much more highly polished piece of work than any manuscript has ever been at this stage. It's nothing like the unformatted monstrosity that Sierra once was in the beginning.

Ah, but is was fun to write that first novel. To explore different writing styles and just write to my heart's content with no thought about being published or wondering if anyone will like it besides me! Those were the days!

Image courtesy of [suphakit73] /

If you are a writer, and you are reading this, here is my advice: Don't rush the creative process. Don't slap a book onto the public's lap, just because you can. Take your time and really polish that manuscript till it shines.

Sierra is now a top-five finalist for the Best Indie Book of 2013. (The Kindle Book Review)

It was worth all my time and effort.

The winners will be announced on Tuesday. (Oct. 1st)
Doesn't matter if I don't win. (But of course I want to!)
Being a finalist is AMAZING!
I feel validated in ways I can't even begin to explain.

I've already won.


  1. Thanks for sharing your writing journey. You are my hero, and I absolutely LOVE your style of writing that shows in your books. I hope you win the contest--you definitely deserve it. I look forward to your next book, whenever it may come out.

    1. Charissa, you are WONDERFUL and I appreciate your support so very much! Thank you for your kind words! I love your books and I can't wait for the third book in the series!

  2. I find reading about authors very interesting. When I read you post, I thought you had been writing pretty fast yourself. Some people are veritable writing machines. Many congratulations on Sierra. I have my fingers and toes crossed!! I will be waiting to hear from you about the final results. Have a great day and enjoy your success. You are a winner in my book.

    1. Thanks, Sherry! It's been a long road, at least it feels that way. But my daughter says the same thing--she thinks I write fast. I guess when you're heavily involved in the process, it seems slow. Thanks so much for your undying support. You always lift my confidence and I appreciate you greatly!

  3. I'm with Sherry. I thought you were writing pretty fast too. Woot! Woot! Crossing everything for Sierra. A fav of mine! I can't wait to read what you are writing next. I'll be watching for your announcement and wish you much success. All of your books are winners for me:)

    1. I love that Sierra is a favorite of yours, Laura! Thank you so much! I don't know why I think I write slow--maybe it's not the writing that's slow, but the courage to publish!! I tend to go over and over the manuscript, making sure everything is correct. But that's a good thing, and necessary. Thanks so much for your kind and encouraging words. You always give me a boost!