And now please allow me to interview myself:
What am I working on?
It appears I have talked myself into an option on a series with my new publisher, so while I await edits on my upcoming chick lit/office romance, I'm busy noodling on a sequel. The trouble with me is, I like to vacillate between light & happy and something a shade darker & heavier, so this new plot has been wanting to deal with issues too hefty for a naughty chick-litty series. But have no fear, for it doesn't take much to lighten my mood and I've come up with ways to turn events in more giggle-worthy directions.
How does my writing differ from others of its genre?
I love this comment from a reviewer of Divine Temptation: "This book did a beautiful job at depicting something in romance novels that is often missing: the actual romance." ~Book Bliss.
I'm a romantic fool, but I'm also a realist, so for me a love story can only be compelling if I actually believe it could happen. This doesn't mean the characters have to all be human or living on earth, mind you, but for me it means that the relationship has to develop over time and the affection needs to be grounded in something more substantial than instant attraction. So one thing that makes my stories different from many others in their genre is that the romance takes a bit longer to develop---but the wait is worth it, I hope.
Why do I write what I do?
See the "romantic fool" comment above.
How does my writing process work?
It starts with me envisioning a particular scene. If the scene's powerful enough to keep me thinking about it, my mind will develop a story around it. After the mental plotting is pretty well fleshed out, I'll create a rough outline---just a sequence of the things that need to happen and the order in which they occur. Then I tell the family to LMTFA for designated chunks of time and I pound out the first draft. Any necessary research is done along the way.
It's during the first draft that I get to know my characters on a more intimate level, so there's a lot of re-positioning and enriching during the second draft. After the second draft, I like to get feedback from a trusted reader/writer. Third draft is all about doing something with that feedback, and fourth draft is all about polish.
And now I get to tag four writers to answer these same questions and give us insight into what they do and why they do it. I'm choosing four great writers whom I've had the pleasure of getting to hang out with in person!
Rumer Haven at Rumer has it... lives in London and is on the verge of her debut release, SEVEN FOR A SECRET, a ghost story romance that straddles contemporary times and the 1920s. She's a classy lassie with a wonderful wit and a beautiful way with words.
Michael Di Gesu at In Time... currently resides in Chicago (though he escapes to more tolerable climates whenever he can) and is the author of AMBER AND THE WHISPERING WILLOWS, a middle grade fantasy, and PORTRAIT OF A TEENAGE MILITARY BRAT, a YA that will one day soon take the world by storm. He's a gifted writer with a generous spirit.
Jennifer Lane lives in Columbus, Ohio and is the author of the romantic suspense novels of THE CONduct SERIES, and STREAMLINE, a New Adult romance/drama. Her other life as a psychoanalyst makes her a wonderfully insightful writer and reader---and the best crit partner a girl could hope for.
Cherie Colyer lives in the western Chicago 'burbs and is the author of super natural YA novels in the EMBRACE SERIES and CHALLENGING DESTINY. Even though she's already a great story teller, she's a tireless learner of the industry and definitely inspires me to keep moving forward.