I’m pleased to welcome my friend and fellow author – Livia Quinn!
Livia Quinn writes paranormal and contemporary romance and sensual romance as Marcella Rose. A DC native, she traded the rush-hour traffic and eighty hour work weeks for the hot sultry Louisiana bayou where she watches the wildlife, deer, alligators, herons and more, amble by her outdoor writing space.
Serendipity…or Stuff Happens by Marcella Rose
I’m hooked on organizer products, programs, planners, calendars. I’m always organizing. That’s because I want so badly to be someone who can plan her life, and have life respond in a predictable fashion. Fortunately for me, I’m better at just ‘winging’ it.
Take last year for example…
April 26th. I was preparing to submit my manuscript in response to some requests at a conference when a friend called and asked, “Do you think it’s too late to rent a storage unit? I heard the River is going to 65ft in three weeks.” Ack! I’d had my head buried in our new business and my Scrivener workshop and wasn’t paying attention. Now all the storage units within 100 miles had been rented and 70% of the population was moving their valuables, livestock, farming equipment, entire households to high ground because the River had never been to 60ft much less 65! Within a week we moved everything to higher ground, then lived on pins and needles for the next two months.
When things settled enough to begin thinking about writing again, my creative well had completely… dried… up. And now the task of responding to those requests was overwhelming. I needed a light paranormal version, a contemporary version, a short and a long version, two of them partials and two fulls. Everyone seemed to want it to be something else.
While my critique partner and I were living this “adventure”, the world of publishing was turning on its head. More and more authors were finding degrees of success in selfpublishing and sharing their knowledge with the rest of us. When I looked at the time and momentum we’d lost and the turnaround time for the traditional process I realized it could be years, if I ever saw my story published. The prevailing feeling among so many seemed to be that you just had to live with years of rejections, and the chances of being one of the small percentage who wound up with a contract were slim. I started asking myself, “Why was I writing? What was my goal? Was it to make big bucks? Well, that would be nice but no. I wanted to see my stories in print (or e-print), get something back for all the hard work, and ultimately to have a reader write me and say, “I loved your book. I can’t wait for the next one.”
My CP remembers the exact day I said to her, “We need to self publish these books.” My reasons are even clearer now than they were then.
- Turnaround time. We weren’t getting any younger. How long did we have to pursue this dream the traditional way when you consider the lag time between correspondence and edits and revisions and possibly still not make the sale.
- Creative license. The story is what it is, whatever word count, whatever elements, whatever label I and my readers attach to it. No more worrying about specific word count, whether my heroine was kickass enough, whether the romance and suspense was 60/40 or 40/60. Did it have a bit too much of this element or was it a bit to long for this publisher?
- Control. Owning my writing business – it’s not only familiar but preferable to me. Revision, quality, artwork, writing and publishing deadlines, pricing are all my responsibility. So are promo and expense. (New traditional authors are up against increasing responsibilities and decreasing royalties.)
- Availability and market. My book is available immediately and globally for as long as I choose to leave it published. And I can have print versions as well if it makes sense to.
Once I had a picture in my mind of the published book and knew I could make it happen, I worked toward my goal with more fervor and concentration than ever before, learning something new at every turn. It was exciting working with the cover artist to bring my sexy hero Cass to life.
Years ago, I looked across the auto parts counter at the twenty year old salesman and said, “Isn’t anything ever easy?” He looked at me with old eyes and said, “Should it be?” He was right. Nothing worth pursuing and doing right is easy.
Well, it’s been hard work, long hours and I’m not getting rich. But I don’t think anything has ever been as rewarding. I hope my readers enjoy my books and see improvement with each one as I continue to work on being a better writer.
But if it hadn’t been for that Mississippi River…I may have still wound up on this path but perhaps not this soon.
What about you? Was there some event that turned you from the direction you were going? And were you better for it?
I’ll be giving away a copy of my new release, a hot romantic adventure, Fire in My Blood under my pen name Marcella Rose.
Here’s the blurb:
Aussie gem hunter, Cass McKay intends to win back the woman he loves and he has the perfect bait, the “Blood” opal. When Cass appears unexpectedly at Elektra Charpentier’s New Orleans design shop, her reasons for sending him away become…complicated; their passion for each other and her dark secret, intricately entwined. One year ago on the eve of Carnival, Elektra broke their engagement after the “Blood” opal was stolen from them. Now, staying out of Cass’ bed isn’t an option if she’s going to keep him safe, but coming clean might make things worse. Elektra is walking a tightrope between desire and deceit, and the truth will will put their love and their lives in peril.
Fire in My Blood is available from Amazon, Smashwords, All Romance Ebooks, and Itunes. Connect with Marcella Rose on Facebook or Twitter @marcellarosewri .To learn more about Livia Quinn’s paranormal series coming in April, go to http://liviaquinn.com connect with her @liviaquinn or on Facebook.