Since I’ve gone through the rejections and figured out what I did when, I supposed the next step would be to see just what I’ve got--written that is.
To that end, I went through my computer files and non-computer files and found all of my novel-length romance fiction, completed or not. I listed them under completed, partial, or openings. I realized I had jumped around a bit. In my romance fiction I found short contemporaries, long contemporaries, long western historicals, suspense, paranormal, and even paranormal suspense. Okay, so I need focus. No one can write in that many styles can they?
Yet more inventory. I went to my bookshelves and scanned titles and authors. If I was going to try and focus in on one or two kinds of romance, then maybe seeing what kind I read the most would help me figure out where my heart really was and what manuscript I had that I should turn my full attention to.
Surprise, there was a big mixture in my bookshelves too. But I was looking for a recurring pattern, a majority. I kind of ended up with a four-way tie though, between short and long contemporaries, paranormal, and suspense. Simplified, I came up with contemporaries with or without paranormal and with or without suspense.
What about sexual content? A mixture there two, but at least there seemed to be a clear majority in that area, which was simply the middle ground. I had only a handful of what you would call sweet romances, and less than that of what you would call erotica. Of course that could just be because the middle ground is what’s the most available. So I’ve decided not to put too much weight on that part of my inventory. In fact, I think you could be comfortable or happy reading some types of sexual content that you might not be happy writing. I know some of my work is about as hot as good soaking bath water, while other stuff might nearly boil that water.
With all of that inventory behind me, I went back to my files. I don’t have anything I’d send out without a rewrite. What I’ve been working on since I started back writing is a manuscript that was about halfway done when I stopped writing before. It doesn’t seem to be working for me this time either.
So, should I do some rewrites on the finished manuscripts and get them out there? Should I finish this partial or another one of my particles and get one or more of them out there? I have three particles, each halfway or better done. One is a very old western historical, the other two are long contemporaries, one more of a paranormal and one more of a paranormal suspense.
My mind screamed for me to pick the easiest, which would be to polish one of those completes up. The responsible side of me said to finish the particle I’ve started back to working on. After all, how many times have I told other writers to finish what they start or they’ll end up with a pile of started manuscripts and never complete a single one of them. The realistic side of me--boy I have a lot of sides--says none of this is, or has, worked for me the last few times I’ve tried to get back into the habit of being a full-time fiction writer.
So, now what? I guess it’s time to find another way to skin a cat.
To be continued….