Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Goals for Twenty-Ten!!

These goals are a to-do list, not a wish list!! They're things I CAN achieve if I really put my mind to it (in no particular order).

Obviously my WISH is to be published in 2010, but that is not completely within my control!

Writing goals

Goal #1:
Finish revisions on the partial of 'Maverick Millionaire, Musical Mistress' and sub to the editor I'm working with.

Goal #2:
Read more!

Goal #3:
Finish 'OHHN' and sub to Superromance.

Goal #4:
Enter the eharlequin Superromance pitch.

Goal #5:
Attend 'Romancing The West' and the 'Romance Writers of Australia conference' in Coogee.

Goal #6:
Rewrite 'Falling For His Magic' and sub to Modern Heat.

Non-writing goals

Goal #1:
Lose another six kilos! Yeah baby!!!

Goal #2:
Finish Trouble's baby photo scrapbook and make a start on His Lordship's!

Monday, December 28, 2009

The year that was...

At the beginning of 2009, I posted my list of goals for 2009.

To refresh your memories and for those not here back then, I'll post them again below and next to the goal, I'll tell you how I did:

* To finish editing WWMM and submit the full to Lucy Gilmour by the end of January - this is TOTALLY achievable. Check - I achieved this goal. Unfortunately it was rejected but the letter why was detailed and I was invited to submit another partial directly to her.

*To write another category targetted romance (well at least one, but I'm being realistic that I have three young boys) - either for Modern Heat or Superromance, depending on feedback I get from editors. Whoops! I started numerous books this year and at the end there, I ALMOST thought I'd finish one, until I got revisions on the partial I had subbed and therefore abandoned the full :) Despite not finishing any books, I actually have a partial currently subbed with Supers as well as my revisions for MH.

*To read more how-to books - this was on my ''goal'' list last year and it didn't really happen. And books about writing - I've just ordered ''Becoming a writer'', which people have been raving about on RomAus, from Book Depository. LOL - Doesn't buying the books count? I delved into a couple of writing books - Save The Cat and Break Into Fiction, but haven't read them enough to get much out of them yet! Tsk. Tsk.

*To participate in an online writing bootcamp and attend the Romance Roadshow in WA. Check! And how AWESOME were these experiences. Through Bootcamp 209 I've met a load of other fabulous writing friends, who are so generous with their thoughts and ideas when it comes to helping me. How lucky am I? And at the Romance Roadshow not only did I have a fabulous time and learn lots, I also met other new writing buddy - Janette, whom I've become good friends with.

Now... non writing related:

*To get my toddler out of nappies - BRING IT ON! This has been the bane of my existence this year - that and not getting enough sleep! We're still not quite there, but I'm positive about the progress we've made in the last month or so!

*To lose enough weight that I'll look good in little shorts next summer - okay.. so maybe I'm dreaming! Check. The little shorts are probably still a summer (or maybe two) off but I lost six kilos in last half of this year and I'm hoping for the same in 2010!!!

So, how'd you go with your goals? I'll be back tomorrow (or the next day) with my goals for 2010!!!

Monday, December 21, 2009

Congrats Cathryn!!

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My fabulous writing buddy Cathryn Brunet's first book is released today by Samhain Publishing! Just wanted to offer her a huge congrats and tell all you guys that if you like your books hot and original, this baby is for you! Head on over to Cathryn's website and follow the links to buy her book. You won't regret it!

Wanted: Insurance Know-It-All!?

Good news is I'm slowly climbing out of the puddle of woe I was in after receiving my first real revisions. Hopefully all the stress and lack of sleep is good training for if I ever actually get published.

The lovely editor I'm working with has given me the go ahead on my thoughts for revision, but there's just one itty bitty problem.

INSURANCE!

That's right... my heroine prangs into the hero's swish, red convertible and in the original incarnation she's 'between insurance companies' and therefore stressed because he's annoyed about his car and she's about to tell him she can't afford to fix it.

Problem is the heroine needs to be BEYOND REPROACH and let's face it, anyone who doesn't have insurance is a bit of a ninny! So I need her to have insurance just not want to claim it for some reason.

The heroine is saving for/pursuing IVF as a single woman and so she needs all the dosh she can get. However from my understanding excess, no matter what kind of car she prangs, will be maximum $500 or something. There was the option that she doesn't want to claim because she wants to look irresponsible for the IVF treatment but in Australia single women are legally allowed to do IVF, so I don't think this would be an issue either.

Still ... without the insurance issue, she has no reason to feel indebted to the hero and therefore the next bit of the plot doesn't work. If the next bit doesn't work, neither does the next and so on and so on. Besides... the editor liked the car prang and what the editor likes we give her!!!

So... am desperately hoping that someone out there knows a bit about insurance. Is there any way around my little problem!? Will pay oodles of cyber chocolates to anyone with a solution :)

Friday, December 18, 2009

Maverick Millionaire, Musical Mistress!

Thanks to everyone who helped me brainstorm a new working title for my manuscript. Piecing your suggestions together I've come up with:

MAVERICK MILLIONAIRE, MUSICAL MISTRESS

Yesterday the title seemed a problem, today that hurtle seems nothing compared to the revisions I'm facing. I've now got a tincy wincy bit of an idea why published authors always make cringy comments on their blogs, Facebook accounts, etc when revisions land in their inbox.

Don't get me wrong, I love a good challenge so I'm facing this thing head on but I'm only just beginning to realise the significance of each little thing in a book. If I change one seemingly small thing, it amazes me how it has a domino affect on the rest of the book.

It seems I finally got the internal conflict right in this submission, but all the changes the editor has suggested means taking out a LOT of the things that highlighted this conflict so well. So now I'm really exercising my brain trying to think of other ways to highlight this core conflict. It hurts my brain.

So... I just wanna take a moment to cyber toast all my good published writer friends, who still go through this kind of stuff on a regular basis. Thanks for slogging away to write books that captivate us and really hit the spot!!

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Help!

I have absolutely ALWAYS had the title of the book before I've started writing. I had Cameron and Peppa's title before I started the book - The Maverick Millionaire's Christmas Fairy!

Now that I've been given revisions on my partial the story is no longer going to be set at Christmas time, therefore really needs a totally new title.

Usually titles come to me but since this book has already been started, I'm stumped. So I'm turning it over to you guys! I'll pay any fabulous ideas with cyber choccies (Lindt balls of course) and pink champagne (of which I'm indulging myself with now for no particular reason aside from the fact it was cheap when I did the grocery shopping)!!!

The story is about Cameron (the head honcho of a major recording studio/company) and Peppa (short for Penelope - an aspiring singer). They meet when she's dressed as a fairy entertaining kids at a charity party for which he's a sponsor. She wants a big family (but is scared a medical condition won't let her achieve this dream) and to become a singer star - she wants IT ALL! He has lost a wife and unborn baby already and never wants to go there again. He's steering clear of any type of committment.

The category hook? An unplanned pregnancy during a no-strings liaison!

Is that enough to go on for the title? Please help!!!!!!!!!

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Gold Letter Day!

Well... it looks like I will NOT be finishing even ONE mss this year.

I heard from the very speedy editor at M&B this morning and she said lots of lovely and good things about my partial but has suggested revisions and another look at the partial before she requests any more.

Good thing is (as my friend Sue BT pointed out) she gave me ticks for dialogue, voice and sexual tension and there is no apparent problem with the conflict. The major issue with this mss was that I'd set it at Christmas time and that didn't really add anything to the story. Also they'd like me to loose the boss/employee hook!

The revisions are DAUNTING. I'd be lying if I said they weren't... but I know they are a chance. A chance to improve my mss to a publishable standard.

Revision letters are GOLD!

So I've ditched the full mss deadline and am giving myself another one - to revise (and improve) the partial and resubmit mid January.

I'll keep you posted :)

Friday, December 11, 2009

The Importance of a Deadline

I know I've been VERY quiet of late. It's cos I'm working to a self-imposed deadline.

I entered the Romance Writer's of Australia Emmy award with my current mss (the one subbed with Richmond) because I wanted to make sure I finished the full. I've been good at starting mss' this year but we all know to actually become a published author, you need to Finish The Damn Book!!!

The second round of the Emmy will be announced end of January/begining of February and any one who gets through will then have to send in the full mss within a week. On the off chance that I make it through, I wanted to have the mss finished at least a few weeks before so I have time to let it sit before doing a first edit.

I've given myself the deadline of December 31st 2009 to finish TMMCF and I'm posting it on here so you guys can all keep me honest. I'm almost at 40k so have about 10k (give or take) to finish.

I think I can... I think I can...

Yesterday I cheated, jumped ahead and wrote the epilogue. It was a LOT of fun :)

Anyway before I sign off just wanted to say a HUGE congrats to those four winners of the iheartpresents writing contest! As a runner up from last year I can't rave enough about the opportunity. From that contest, I'm lucky enough to still be working with an editor. And those editors know their stuff. Like this year's MH Winner, I didn't even get feedback in the first contest a couple of years back. So congrats to EVERYONE who entered and don't feel disheartened if you only recieve a form email!

Instead... be even MORE determined to succeed!!!

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Compulsively checking email and the letterbox...

Last week a good friend of mine heard on her sub at Super. I subbed a partial there two weeks after her, so since then I've been on edge, thinking I might be hearing something soon.

Then this morning another good friend, heard on a partial which she subbed at Richmond LAST WEEK! I KNOW talk about record time.

Well... I subbed my revised partial (yep I emailed the editor I'm working with and told her about the changes I wanted to make to story and synopsis and she said to send the new version) last Tuesday to the same editor, so now I'm compulsively checking email every five minutes to see if I've heard.

I tell ya, this writing caper is seriously hazardous to one's mental health!!

Anyone else heard on subs lately!?