Since my last post I've spent my free time digging through publishers' guidelines, as well as my to-be-read pile of books, my keeper-pile of books--and reading some of both.
I thought about them all, about what I liked and why I liked them. Seems not a lot has changed, at least not in the last few years. I still like cowboys, paranormal, and suspense. Paranormal suspense wins over just straight romantic suspense, mostly. When it comes to paranormal and suspense, not all of my favorites are romance books though, but they have some of that romance sparkle in them, if not a good romance in them. They just might not have that happy ever after ending.
In fact, two of my favorites are from authors who have the same characters star in book after book. A series of suspense novels by Jeffery Deaver that star criminalist Lincoln Rhyme and his protégé Amelia Sachs. (If you haven't read the books, you might know them from the one book in these series that was made into a movie, The Bone Collector.) Now these books aren't romance, but the building care, trust and love between Lincoln and Amelia is positively a draw for me, along with the great writing and stories.
The second series is from author Kim Harrison. The main star in these books is the witch Rachel Morgan. This is paranormal in a world of its own, wrote in first person of all things. (And I didn't even think I liked first person, but Kim Harrison's stories made me change my mind.) There's some romance in these books too, but no way are these books romance either. Oh, there's also suspense, since a lot of times you think Rachel is going to bite the big one for sure this time. Smile.
Okay, so I know some about today's market, I know what kind of books bring me the most pleasure to read, but I'm still not sure where I'm going. Seems the more I try to focus on it and force myself to settle on the next step, on centering on just exactly what kind of romance I'm going to write, the larger the knot gets in my stomach and the more I feel a building panic taking hold. I think I scared to death of failing again. Of writing the wrong thing, of starting something I won't finish, of spending more of my time writing something that will never see the light day.
Would you believe even scared of making it, of finishing a book and having it published and knowing they are waiting for a next one and me not being able to pull it off again. My sister always says "fear is bondage".
Maybe it's time I work on some of those ties that bind?
To be continued...