Tag Archives: critique group

So why is it?

That I’ve been blogging for almost a year and I still pushed delete instead of send on the messages I replied to yesterday? UGH!

The book’s heading into the big YIKES then the black moment then the HEA. I hope it’s not too complicated. It made perfectly logical sense to me and my CPs when I plotted it. But now, I’m not so sure. After this draft is done, I’ll work through all the plot lines. Make sure they’re logical. Then flesh it out. I’m not going to rush though. I plan on having it out the door by Nov. 18. That’s still a month to polish it, make it shine. Make sure the words work. 🙂 With the other request, I’m still shooting for Halloween.

I got contest results back on my Romantic Elements ST. And yep. Split decision. One This is ready to send with minor errors fixed. One this is okay but…. And one, the writer is obviously a newbie…. UGH!!!! 🙂
Actually it doesn’t bother me a bit. I got great feedback and I’d enter the contest again no question.

Critique Partners Rock

Once upon a time I had a great group of critique partners. The fabulous Sheila Curlin will be published one day and when she is, review writers are going to compare her to Luanne Rice. I’m just warning you. Get ready. It will happen. It might be a couple years, but it will happen.
The awesome Karen Kelley keeps stunning me. She didn’t start off writing hot books. She started writing funny. And then one day hot just sort of happened. And then it happened again. And then she sold to Brava and it happened again and again. And I thought well isn’t that sweet? Karen’s selling these hot Brava books and she’s doing an awesome job. But then, sometime in the last six months something remarkable has happened. The hot books have gotten hotter, the stories faster, bigger, better than ever. I love that I get the sneak peek on these books. They challenge me to kick my writing up a notch!
I can’t imagine writing without my CPs, and I can’t wait to share in all our successes.

fan mail

I love the RJ contest.
My last entry garnered some great e-mails. My new entry hasn’t really got a lot of feedback, but then yesterday I got a HUGE fan letter. The reader compared my heroine to Anita Blake (OMG!!!!). I never in a million years expected the comparison but it sure did make my day. I read the letter out loud to DH, but he totally missed the point. Laurell K. Hamilton and Dorothy Hamil are synonymous to him. He was a little surprised to hear I’d written a kick butt heroine. My poor dh has no idea. I think he likes it that way. 🙂

I’m reading Match Me if You Can. I almost didn’t buy it in hard back, but decided I couldn’t wait. I’m so glad I spent the $. It’s an amazing story. Definitely SEP at her best. I might like Heath as much as Bobby Tom and that’s high praise indeed!

My fabulous CP Karen Kelley brought new pages to critique today. They were burning hot. Before now I’ve felt Karen’s stories fit in Brava but would work as a regular Single Title romance. Not anymore. This new book is hotter than hot and hilarious. I can’t wait to see it on bookstore shelves.


I LOVE my new WIP. Love it, love it, love it. DD says I’m writing a Hallmark movie and I tell her we can only hope. 🙂
Of course, it is 2:02 in the morning and I’ve been writing for three hours straight and I just hit the end of the first major turning point but I LOVE THIS story.
And the whole problem with the scene is fine, I just needed to talk it out and tweak it some.
Woo Hoo.
And I have my next Intrigue idea to put together if the last one gets R’d. (It shouldn’t because it is awesome. That hero is the best hero I’ve ever written, but it might, so I’ve got to plan for the next one) And I got my first agent R and it doesn’t hurt. I can’t believe that, but it really doesn’t. I don’t know why. Maybe I’m just strange. And I’ve got the short synopsis written for my next women’s fiction. My summer is planned. I’m a writer. I write. I tell stories. I love this. Woo Hoo.
I can’t wait to bring this to critiques with the wonderful Bad Girls, Brave author Karen Kelley who constantly reminds me dreams do come true and Sheila Curlin, emotional writer extraordinaire who reminds me to take risks in my writing. Whoa. This is risky. And I love it.
Forget the rules. They don’t exist.
Woo Hoo!

I’m back…weigh in and retreat

Four more days and summer’s here. I can’t wait.
I missed yesterday’s update. I’ve now lost 51 pounds. I looked through my weight log and realized I’ve either gained or lost what I gained the last two months. ICK. Time to move on.

The retreat was a blast. It’s always rejuvenating to just hang out with other writers and veg. We plotted, talked, critiqued, ate and drank. Some of us even went swimming. The hundred degree days warmed the lake perfectly.
I shared my synopsis and the opening of my new work with the writers there. It was intimidating to say the least. This is a whole new direction for me and here were these incredible writers sitting there willing to listen. Two are my normal critique partners, but it was different at the retreat.
I wanted to share. I was excited about what I’d written. I never planned on crying. But I did. A LOT. I was just overcome with sadness and then overwhelming peace and then more sadness. It was so strange. But it was amazing too. I’ve never really felt this close to a work before. It made me wonder if maybe I’m not a little too close to this story. I’m writing it because I feel like it’s the story I’m supposed to write. We’ll see what happens.

GH mail

I got my Golden Heart scores in the mail. They stunk.
And you know what? That’s okay.
I keep reading all these messages from people talking about how they ranked in the top quarter or bottom half and people are really upset about this and all I can think, is whoa people, save the rejection stings for real rejection.
I love the Golden Heart contest. It gives all the unpubs like me a chance to get their work out there, competing against thousands of other hopefuls. Those that final have the chance to get their entire manuscript in front of an editor. And lots of people sell those books. Attending the awards ceremony is fabulous. And every year I don’t enter I kick myself because I’ve given up any opportunity to be on that stage in that pretty dress saying thank you to my chapter (RRRW), my CPs (the Bad Girls Critique Group), and super cool authors Shelley Bradley and Sylvia McDaniels for their unwavering faith in my future success.
The only reason I enter is to final. So far I’ve been 100% unsuccessful.
But that’s okay.
When my scores came in, I cringed for exactly three seconds. And then I put them back in their envelope and put the envelope in the trash. It’s not that I don’t care about what other writers think about my work. It’s just that it really DOESN’T matter what other writers think about my work. Editors matter. One day, an agent will matter. MY CPs matter. Once I’m published, my readers will matter.
I hope that’s a healthy way to look at the GH.
It’s an opportunity like no other.
It’s an exciting contest with great value if you final. And it’s a BLAST to hang out on message boards the day the finalist calls go out. It hurts a little when you do’t get the call, but it’s just so amazing to read the stories of those who do get the call, it makes it okay.
The big thing is the GH is a contest. Some finalists don’t sell. The key to being published isn’t a contest. the key to publishing is writing. And then getting that work out there.
Just my opinion.