Wednesday, December 01, 2010
Wednesday Promo- Tanya Hanson
If I could go back in time to before I was first published . . . I’d definitely not wait until my kids went off to college to write and submit. Saying I was “too busy” was just an excuse and, I suppose, a fear of failure. Well, I learned a bunch of things, mainly that I could get published and that I could survive rejection!
Some other things I learned:
1. Check your pen name early on. I didn’t and now share cyberspace with a porn star of the same name. (Ah well. At least it drives traffic to my website LOL.)
2. Remember that nobody dies from rejection. Gnash your teeth for a day, then move on.
3. Write what you love, not what’s trendy at the moment. If you don’t, writing’s a chore and what’s the point?
4. Enter contests. It’s such a feel-good thing when you do well, and the comments are helpful if you don’t. It might open some doors. And practically speaking, having to follow directions and prepare a perfect manuscript is great training.
One of my recent releases, Marrying Minda, placed first in two RWA chapter fiction contests.
Best of all, my entry in the Hearts Crossing Contest at White Rose Publishing a year ago has led to an eight-book “Hearts Crossing Ranch” series contract! And I was just the runner-up! Hearts Crossing Ranch and Redeeming Daisy are already available, with stories about their six siblings due through 2011.
5. Ease up on e-loops, mySpace, Facebook, and twitter. All that can really get in the way of writing time. My editor encourages two full hours of writing before going online, although I must confess I’m not there yet.
6. Read! I got a recumbent bike both for exercise and for a dedicated time for reading. And a Kindle! I have a book in hand almost anytime, anywhere. Reading good literature helps with such things as varying sentence beginnings and structures, increasing vocabulary, and improving your own grammar skills when you see our language done well. Can you tell I taught high school English forever?
7. Take advantage of workshops and online classes. Marrying Mattie, my recent release, took an unexpected turn thanks to a plotting class I took while I was writing it.
8. And last but not least, forget about your mom and Great Aunt Edna reading your books when you write love scenes.
All that said, I hope you’ll check out my books at The Wild Rose Press and White Rose Publishing, two awesome small houses. And don’t forget to stuff those stockings with my current novella, Christmas for Ransom, past of the Lawmen and Outlaws Christmas anthology. Oooh-la-la, I picked a good-hearted bad guy to write about!
Merry Christmas! Oh, and if you’ve a mind, don’t hesitate to cast a vote for Marrying Mattie. It’s has been nominated for Best Book of 2010 at Love Western Romances, and voting starts this very day!