It’s the end of the month and time for another segment of my monthly Wrap Up. This is where I open up about running my business [yes, writing is a business] and let you have a sneak peak into the dirty details of a Romance author’s career. I’m covering which projects I’m working on, any set backs or opportunities that come my way, the truth about submissions, and more.
My Main Project: Writing Category Romance
Revisions for the second book in my Afterlife series are done. Whew! When I first started revisions on His Seductive Target in June, I honestly didn’t expect it’d take me two solid months of rewriting to get this project in shape. Where my last project was written specifically in my heroine’s point of view, I knew those edits would be the death of me. But this book already had my hero and heroine’s points of view. What I was lacking was fluidity.
Each chapter, before I’d started, consisted of two or three scenes split between the hero and heroine. They didn’t flow well and I’ve actually grown somewhat of an anxiety over the past year when my chapters are split between points of view. I know it’s weird and sometimes I won’t be able to help it, but the changes worked great in this manuscript.
During these rewrites, I ended up splitting each point of view into it’s own chapter, converting from telling to showing, and adding between 1,000-2,500 words to each chapter. I ended up adding five brand new chapters from scratch and deleted close to 30,000 words. My finished word count didn’t change much, but the overall quality of my work did.
The book flows really well now from chapter to chapter, my characters have more depth with deep point of view, and the romance has been expanded more fully. While I could’ve submitted the manuscript to my editor as it was [she really loved the first three chapters of the original manuscript] and most likely gotten it contracted, I didn’t want to spend the next year in edits and put everything else on hold as I’d done with Her Fallen Protector.
So here’s hoping these rewrites have done the job. I have one more read through for this book and it’s off to my editor.
The first book in my Agents of Task Force 17 series, my first full-length romantic suspense, Desolation, is out to query and on submission. Yep, simultaneously.
I don’t know if you’ve noticed, but the publishing industry has a lot of wait time and I don’t have the patience. So, after following some advice from my awesome critique partner, I decided to not only query to a couple agents for this book, but also submit directly to publishers.
My reasoning? The agent will get back to me before the publishers and I’ll be able to withdraw my submission if she wants to take me on as a client.
Right now, I have a full request with an agent I’ve built a relationship with over the past few years, but she won’t be able to get back to me until the end of August with an answer.
So I submitted the book to my editor at Entangled as well as a dream publisher I specifically wrote the book for. I’ll be lucky if I hear back by October from either of them. So, see? It wasn’t a horrible idea to submit to both at the same time…I think…
I’ve recently asked one of my publishers for the rights back on my MC Romance, Sour Cherry, and they agreed. The sales just haven’t been great, I’ve never been in love with the cover [where’s the motorcycle!?], and the point of view is all wrong. I could probably come up with more reasons, but we’ll stick with those three. The book will be getting a makeover. New cover, new title, the hero’s point of view will be added, and I’ll be rewriting it into 3rd-person point of view. All to make the book free for my readers.
Yep, you heard me. If things go as planned, I’ll be giving the new novella away to readers for free as a thank you and a sample before you agree to buy my other books. Awesome, huh? Well, I think it’s awesome.
I’ll be finishing the draft of my next full-length romantic suspense, Resurrection. This is the second book in my Agents of Task Force 17 series and has about 9,000 words already written in it from last year.
I’m really excited about this reunited lovers story and can’t wait to see where these characters are taking me. I plan on devoting the rest of the year to get this book drafted and revised in case of a series contract of the first book in the series, but will be implementing Candace Haven’s Fast Draft and Revision Hell workshop to this manuscript.
My Secondary Project: Branding
This month I actually backed off branding a tad. Going from blogging five days a week to three days a week has taken a huge burden off my shoulders and opened my schedule so I could get those revisions done on my main project. I’d started getting burned out and my stress level shot through the roof because I was running behind schedule on keeping the blog up-to-date. Once that starts happening, I tend to spiral down to the point I stop taking care of myself and my work begins to suffer.
But this time, I consciously made the effort to lighten my load instead of wringing myself dry. Surprisingly, it wasn’t a hard decision. Last year I went into a break down because my self-doubt and guilt had gotten the best of me. This year, I’ve learned to appreciate myself fully and am working day after day to not be so hard on myself. It’s a process, but I can already see some amazing changes in my life. I’m less stressed, healthier emotionally and physically, and enjoy going to work each and every day.
My segment, “What’s Up Wednesday” has been replaced with “Writing Tip Wednesday” to keep in line with the point of my blog. While I enjoy keeping readers up to date with my progress on revisions, what I’m reading, and what I’ve been up to each week, it’s repetitive, outdated, and isn’t seeing the traffic I’d hoped at the beginning of the year. Besides, the whole point of the monthly Wrap up post is those same exact things. So “Writing Tip Wednesday” has been born. Each week I’ll be posting simple, fast, and dirty tips on craft, branding, and anything else that suits my fancy.
Lightening that load included cutting back on guest posts as well. Of course, I have bloggers asking when I’ll be turning my posts in, but I just have to be honest with them. I’m not under contract for these posts and my well-being is more important right now. I love guest posting and meeting new bloggers and readers, but the creativity for these posts has run dry over the past few weeks. I was so entrenched in getting my blog running and spreading my reach that my manuscripts took a back seat [the whole point of my career]. That just can’t happen. Not when I’m so close to where I want to be. I’m hoping guest posting will pick up over the next month, but that will only be after I submit His Seductive Target to my editor.
My TBR Project
I think last month I’d read something close to six books. This month, not so much. Although, I highly enjoyed the books I did read! One was a brand new author to me and the other was working for redemption in my opinion. Both were awesome reads. Reviews have been posted. Here are the books I can take off my TBR shelf this month:
Ripped by Edie Harris
Targeted by Katie Reus
Expanding My Reach Project
I won’t be tracking this anymore. It’s fairly popular for bloggers to do a monthly wrap up with how many new followers they’ve acquired, but not really applicable in my case anymore. I’m shifting my focus back to my manuscripts and readers don’t really give a crap about how many followers I have. Lol.
That’s it for this month’s Wrap Up. I thoroughly enjoy giving you a sneak peak into the life a Romance author. If there’s something you’d like to see in these wrap ups or if you have any questions, please feel free to contact me!