If you dream of seeing your name on the cover of a book but aren’t sure where to begin, I’ve put together some Tips for New Writers.
I have some additional tips if you’re interested in Writing for Love Inspired.
If you’re interested in securing representation by a literary agent and want to learn what’s involved, I suggest reading these tips on Choosing an Agent published by my literary agency, Books & Such Literary Management.
If you enjoy reading and want to post reviews to support your favorite authors, check out my Review Writing Tips.
If you’re interested in how my dream of being a published author came about, here’s the story behind the stories…
My Journey to Publication
I embarked on my writing journey January 1, 2006. During the next two and a half years I pounded out five historical romance manuscripts. Why historicals? The research is a blast. Plus I get a kick out of using words like addlepated, gewgaws and smitten.
Contest fever grabbed me early on. I submitted 36 contest entries during those early years, receiving a wealth of helpful feedback from my generous contest judges, along with a few finals. The most exciting was my double final in the 2008 Golden Heart®, a national contest sponsored by Romance Writers of America®. That led to my first blog guest appearance and introduced me to the wonderful world of writers online.
At that point, I learned how much I had yet to learn and spent a year studying craft. Armed with my newfound knowledge, I took a look at my stories to see which of them showed the most promise. I loved them all, but Miles and Elenora told me theirs was the story I should pick, and I listened. I’d rewritten it once, but I knew it needed more work, so I got busy.
That rewrite proved my characters were right. Miles and Ellie’s story took first place in several contests, earned me requests from editors and agents, and led to my offer of representation. Rachelle Gardner made her offer on the eve of Christmas Eve in 2009. Talk about an amazing Christmas present!
I’d love to tell you that Rachelle sold my story right away, but that wasn’t the case. I still had work to do. After spending several months making my story the best I possibly could, I sent it back to Rachelle and held my breath. To my delight, she liked it and was ready to submit it, which she did. Six weeks later we had two offers. I got a contract for Christmas!
On July 1, 2012, my debut novel, A Bride Opens Shop in El Dorado, California was released by Barbour Publishing, eighteen months after my contract offer. July is my birthday month, and I can’t think of a better birthday present than holding my debut novel in my hands. It was a thrill. You can watch a video of that milestone moment below.
One book doesn’t make a writing career. I set to work on another story. Alas, no publishers were interested in it, so I started on a new story.
Back when I was a starry-eyed teenager, I fell in love with the sweet Harlequin romances of the 70s and dreamed of writing stories like them one day. Forty years later, that dream came true! In December 2013, Love Inspired editor Emily Rodmell made an offer for my first Love Inspired Historical, Family of Her Dreams. I’m thrilled to be part of the Love Inspired team. I’ve had four Love Inspired Historicals published so far, with another coming this November. Their Mistletoe Matchmakers will be my first Christmas novel.