Key words: Lori Foster, Stella Cameron, Linda Lael Miller, Harlequin Famous Firsts
Executive Editor Marsha Zinberg is on the Harlequin Famous Firsts blog tour! Marsha was an editor at Harlequin when many of the future romance genre’s future stars were acquired. In the past few weeks she’s contacted many of the authors and they are sharing their “firsts” with us: their inspiration; their creative process; their love of the romance novel. Today, more on how they write….
Like many now established romance writers, Stella Cameron began her writing her career when her children were small, so she early developed the habit of writing at night. Music was always playing in the background, and she still follows this procedure, setting the mood, and see-sawing through a first draft, occasionally stopping to read and make sure no threads have been dropped, and then ploughing through that initial draft another few times to layer in complexity and nuance.
Both Lori Foster and Vicki Lewis Thompson declare that their writing process has changed drastically from their methods when they first began. Vicki used to outline copiously and print out the book as she wrote it. In today’s writing climate, however, she feels “much more protective of the process of creation.” She avoids printing out the book until she is sure she is ready. For her, while the story is still living in her computer, it continues to be her sole possession, still pliable clay amenable to molding. But once it’s printed, it’s out there, in public, and harder to change.
For Lori Foster, the advent of technology takes the credit for making her a better writer. Research is so much easier to accomplish, that her imagination is liberated. And in the olden days, when she used a typewriter, she was much more hesitant to delete a scene. Now, she can be more creative and easily change her work at will.
Has Linda Lael Miller’s process changed? Not really. She’s an early riser, writes about five hours a day, can create a first draft quite quickly, and then goes back to edit. But elements have altered around the established approach. Linda feels she is now a much better writer, because she has had so much experience and practice, and her ability to produce a fast first draft came from her training writing category romances to deadline and her drive to make a living. And in the early days, she had a bonus weapon in her arsenal. She lived next door to Debbie Macomber, and the two fledgling authors swapped chapters and input every day, a two-woman support group helping each other through a lot of growth and change. What a lovely example of friendship and generosity netting success for both parties!
Tomorrow you’ll find me at Romancing the Blog. My previous topics include: Ideas for their First Books at Bookbinge , How Technology has changed for writers at Plot Monkeys and part one of the creative process at the Blaze Authors blog.
As a special treat we have provided 1 nostalgia Harlequin tote bag and 8 Famous First novels to giveaway to a reader picked at random from the comments on this blog.
Don’t forget that you can enjoy 16 free Harlequin novels by downloading them at www.HarlequinCelebrates.com. And the Harlequin Cover Art Show in New York runs May 30 – June 12th at the Open House Gallery, New York City (201 Mulberry Street in Soho).
PS: Be sure to check out all of the books in Harlequin Famous First collection:
The Matchmakers  by Debbie Macomber
Tears of the Renegade  by Linda Howard
Tangled Lies  by Anne Stuart
Moontide  by Stella Cameron
State Secrets  by Linda Lael Miller
Uneasy Alliance  by Jayne Ann Krentz
Night Moves  by Heather Graham
Impetuous  by Lori Foster
The Cowboy and the Lady  by Diana Palmer (available in September 2009)
Fit to be Tied  by Joan Johnston (available in September 2009)
Captivated  by Carla Neggers (available in September 2009)
Bronze Mystique  by Barbara Delinsky (available in September 2009)
What would you like to ask one of the Famous First authors?