Monday, November 05, 2007

You plan; fate laughs

My first two published novels were romantic suspense stories, You Belong to Me and On Fire. My plan was to eventually write for three publishers in three separate genres - romantic suspense, mystery and science fiction/fantasy. But for now, I was satisfied to build a readership with my romantic suspense. I'd hoped to grow into the other genres in the near future.

Fate must have gotten quite the belly laugh from my plans. Last week it threw me for a major loop.

My editor rejected my proposal for the second book in my Fire trilogy. Sadly, the last two installments will remain on the shelf, unless there's a demand for the stories. Instead of continuing the trilogy, my editor requested a contemporary romance.

If you take another look at the opening paragraph of this post, you'll see contemporaries weren't part of my plan. I jokingly told my husband I'd never written a story without at least one dead body. But my agent pointed out that writing contemporaries for this editor would allow me to offer my romantic suspense to another editor, moving toward my goal of writing for multiple houses. Excellent point. I've got my fingers crossed.

Although disconcerting, this experience has given me insight into how authors are able to position themselves to write for multiple houses. It's also explained why some series are cut short or never materialize. Overall, it's been a good learning experience.

I'd better get back to my contemporary manuscript. Writing stories without dead bodies isn't as easy as it may seem.



angela henry said...


Man that sucks! But, I know how you feel. My editor recently rejected a proposal I wrote for a standalone mystery. My agent thinks its smart for authors to write for multiple houses. So, he's shopping it elsewhere. I'll be keeping my fingers crossed that you'll be able to place your romantic suspense with another editor.

PS: I have no plans to write anything that doesn't involved dead bodies, either!


patricia sargeant said...

Hi, Angela. Thank you so much for your well wishes regarding placing my romantic suspense with another editor. I can use all the positive vibes I can get. :)

I knew you'd understand about the dead bodies. LOL!

Writing contemporaries has thrown me for a loop. But I think, in the long run, it will help me focus even more on developing the characters in the story, which will translate to even stronger stories. I hope. :)

patricia sargeant said...

Angela! My apologies. I meant to add my very best wishes to you that you're able to place your standalone mystery with a wonderfully supportive publisher. Keep us posted, please.

Nine to Five Diva said...

Hi Patricia,

I absolutely love a good mystery, and personally I don't think there are enough "good" ones on the shelves. I hope you are able to bring yours to the public in the future. In the meantime, all the best with writing the contemporary romance.


patricia sargeant said...

Hi, Charlotte! Thank you very much.

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