Saturday, March 24, 2012

Write What You Love

And Love What You Write

Completely Unrelated Hunger Games Update: 
I took my older two kids to see it last night. It was fantastic. My kids were not quite so wowed. Perhaps it's because they have not yet become as cynical about books-to-movies as I am, so they had higher expectations. A piece of advice for all you who have yet to see it: Get there early enough to get good seats. We got SO sick sitting in the third row. There are a lot of extreme action close-ups and camera jumps that would have been so much better from farther away. I can't wait to watch it again from the comfort of my own home.

Write What You Love and Love What You Write:

I pulled out one of my old manuscripts this week. I'd been putting it off, but several die-hard fans (including my sister, my daughter and an incredible friend in Texas) wouldn't let me shelf it entirely.

It's a paranormal romance. For some reason, that has always embarrassed me. After all, I'm the one writing blog posts about how much I love romantic subplots, remember? But in this book, there is no mistaking that the romance drives the plot. It comes complete with blush-inducing elements like overpowering magnetic attraction and a love triangle. There's even a chapter where my main character stays in bed for a week after her hero leaves her.

I expected to cringe. I expected to shudder. I expected to X out long swathes of the story as I read it.

But it's good.

Yes, the dialogue needs tightening, and a couple of minor characters could use a facelift. And yeah, the ending has never felt quite right to me yet.

But! I'm smiling as I read it, and for whole pages I forget that I'm supposed to be editing. My villain is hot--and possibly redeemable. My main character is so much more adventurous than I'd remembered. There are shivery, smoldery moments.

It's exactly what Sheena talked about in her post and again when she said "Write the books you want your kids to read. If you think there needs to be more balance on one side or another, then write that kind of book." My story is the kind of book I would like to read. I need to stop worrying about the reaction of some imaginary audience, and simply have fun! In my opinion, the world can't have enough light-hearted love stories, so why should I be embarrassed to write them?

Perhaps I'm the only one who subconsciously believes that the rest of my stories have to be some cookie-cutter  duplicate of my first one. Especially in this day and age, that's a pretty silly thought. My next book could be hard-core science fiction if I wanted, and I could still get it out there. (It would take a lot of effort to write, though I suspect it wouldn't be as difficult as trying to write something contemporary. I don't know why that seems like such an impossible task to me. But I digress...)

So here, with all of you as my witnesses, I am making a pledge. Earth's Gate (Terra's Gate) will be published in 2012! Though it won't be called Earth's Gate OR Terra's Gate. Those are crummy titles for a paranormal romance. They sound way too sci-fi, and I haven't written that one yet. 

It's too bad The Lost Gate is taken. That might have worked. Or Funny Tragic, Crazy Magic. That would have been good too. 

I just had a scary, spontaneous thought:

Announcing the FIRST ANNUAL "NAME MELANIE'S BOOK" contest! Submit your entry by June 15th 2012! The winner will win a free electronic copy of my book and their name in the acknowledgement section. 

I haven't asked them yet, but I think I will ask the three above-mentioned "die-hard fans" if they will be the judges. 

I will post a synopsis next week, for those of you think that might be helpful.

I'm not certain if the submissions should be e-mailed to me or posted publicly. Any thoughts on that?


  1. Congrats. I remember that story!

    Unfortunately, I suck at titles. I'm lucky to come up with something usable for my own stories.

  2. I'm all for writing what you love. I think it brings an authenticity to the work that really comes through. I think it is one of the reasons Twilight did so well.

    And don't let those imaginary audiences hold you back. They hate everything. :)

    I saw Hunger Games last night too, and we sat way too close. But it was AWESOME. :)

  3. HMMMMM.....I'm thinking. By the way, Congratulations on deciding to publish.


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