From Frank to Nora & Charlaine
Like most of my writing peers, my mother would disappear into her favorite reading spot and chew through Harlequin Presents books like Dove chocolate bonbons. To this day I don’t know where she hides them all and to be honest, I never looked.
I was a Sci-Fi girl.
It was Star Wars that brought me to sci-fi. My uncle, another avid reader in my family, took all us kids to see Star Wars at the local cinema. The theatre was packed and we ended up having to sit in the front row. I still remember that opening scene where the star destroyer cut like a knife through the inky black of outer space. I was completely awe struck and HOOKED!
David Lynch’s Dune movie, starring Kyle MacLachlan and STING, led me to Frank Herbert’s books and I pretty much stayed stuck there until after college.
Flash forward to post college and my first corporate job. (For some reason, my day jobs have always required loads of travel. I guess that’s what happens when your main prayer from childhood through college was to see the world on someone else’s dime…) A thriller and mystery loving coworker, Tara, and I snuck away from a conference we were coordinating in Phoenix, AZ. We snagged one of the rental cars and drove straight to The Poisoned Pen Bookstore. I was still exclusively a Sci-Fi girl. I had no clue about mysteries beyond Murder She Wrote. Tara and The Poisoned Pen staffer recommended a new series by J.D. Robb and I picked up the first book: Naked in Death. The series’ world reminded me of Blade Runner and I read the first six or seven books before starting my first manuscript.
I had no clue that I was writing a futuristic romance. Plus, I was Sci-Fi girl, so I didn’t bat an eye when that first draft blew past a 120k word count and I was only three quarters the way done. Hell, I still had a birth scene and four buildings to explode. I was on a freaking roll! <Oh the joy and folly of that first opus! LOL!>
It was on another business trip, this time to Columbia, SC <remember, I wanted to see the world on someone else’s dime> that I picked up an odd book in the airport bookstore. The cover was blue and featured a folk art styled drawing of a cute blonde chick riding a tiger, while being chased by a vampire. The book was Charlaine Harris’ Definitely Dead. I LOVE the The Sookie Stackhouse Series and it was on Charlaine’s website, on the Frequently Asked Questions page, that I learned about Romance Writer’s of America. She highly recommended RWA for new writers, so I joined.
My local RWA chapter, Rose City Romance Writers, held my hand and taught me all about writing romance stories. And may God bless Sarah Raplee’s precious little heart for cold reading my awful 120k words!
I must admit, I took a rather circuitous route to writing novels with strong romantic elements. But I’m here to stay and I’m excited to see where this journey takes me.
Posted on April 7, 2014, in Uncategorized and tagged a writer's story, C. Morgan Kennedy, Charlaine Harris, genre writing, I Love Romance Novels, JD Robb, science fiction, writing. Bookmark the permalink. 14 Comments.