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Thursday, September 27, 2007

Open Submission Call--Psychic Powers anthology

Open call for submissions—Samhain Publishing psychic powers anthology for Fall 2008

I'd like to announce an open call for submissions for a new anthology. This psychic powers anthology will consist of three to four novellas to be released individually as ebooks for release November 2008 and combined into one print title for release November 2009.

I am open to any genre, setting and heat level. But the central premise MUST involve psychic powers. These psychic powers can be underlain by magic or science or both. A few examples would be: telepathy, telekinesis, precognition and mind control. The anthology is certainly not limited to these. Submissions should be 20,000 to 30,000 words in length.

Submissions are open to all authors previously published with Samhain and authors aspiring to publish with Samhain. Submissions must be new material, previously published material will not be considered.

To submit, please include the full manuscript (of 20,000 to 30,000 words) with a comprehensive 2-3 page synopsis. Also include a letter of introduction/query letter and tell me a little about yourself.

Submissions are open until January 13, 2008, and final decision will be made by February 3. Submissions should be sent to editor@samhainpublishing.com and please put Psychic Powers Anthology Submission in the subject line.

Anne Scott, Editor
Samhain Publishing
www.samhainpublishing.com


posted by Tawny Taylor at 12:44 PM | 0 comments

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Seven Habits of Highly Effective (aka published) Authors--Day 6

Hello again!

Only two more habits left to talk about. A quick review of numbers one through five first.

Highly Effective Authors…

1. 1. Write every day.

2. Understand the business side of publishing.

3. Learn how to take criticism.

4. Set goals and meet them.

5. Learn how to self edit their work.

And now, on to habit 6.

6. Highly Effective Authors read. A lot. And not only do they read a lot, but they read books both in their genre and outside.

Why is this habit so important?

A. Because authors who read tend to have a better handle on the market, and are therefore better able to find their niche. It’s extremely difficult for a writer to know what work is being published if they aren’t readers. And without that knowledge, it’s impossible for them to consider how they might fit into the market.

B. If you write category romance, it’s particularly important for you to read the lines and get a feel for each one. Lines change. Evolve. It’s virtually impossible to “get” them if you haven’t read several recent titles.

C. Writers gain inspiration from other authors’ work. Reading, among other activities, gets the creative juices flowing.

D. Writers learn about plotting and storytelling from published stories. I’m not suggesting a writer “steal” a plot from a published book. But what I am suggesting is that writers learn about plot arcs and storytelling from published books.

E. By exposing him/herself to other genres, an author can bring a fresh spin on a tired subgenre. Take a look at the huge number of genre-blending books that are being published today. Yes, editors need to be able to fit a book into their current lists, and so a book that completely breaks all rules and fits nowhere is likely to be rejected. But injecting a fresh spin inspired from an outside genre can (and has!) lead to a breakout novel for some authors.

Now that I’ve listed all the reasons why it’s so important to continue reading when you’re writing, I’ll address the primary reason why writers (especially new ones) stop reading.

They can’t turn off the internal editor and enjoy a book the way they used to.

I’ve been writing professionally for about six years. I was published four years ago. I’d say it was in the last year that I was finally able to sit down and read books in my genre and enjoy them, without the internal editor nitpicking them to pieces. It takes time to shut that obnoxious voice up. But that’s okay. You still need to read. Outside of writing, reading is the most important thing you can do to develop your craft.

So head to the library or the bookstore. Grab a book and settle in for some great reading. Don’t worry about the little voice in your head screaming about punctuation or adverbs. Just keep turning pages, absorbing the story.

Here are some questions to ask yourself as you read (and hopefully distract you from the little stuff):

1. What kind of character is the protagonist (hero and heroine in a romance novel)? Do you care about the character? Why or why not?

2. How does the author use conflict to keep the reader turning pages?

3. How does the plot progress? Do you see some kind of framework or structure?

4. (Romance) What scenes does the author use to develop the romance? And how are they balanced/blended with the external plot?

5. What sorts of tools does the author use to maintain the pace in the middle of the book?

6. How does the author tie up each thread of the story?

7. Is the ending satisfying? Why or why not?

8. If you had written this story, how might you have told it differently?

There you go, the sixth habit. The final habit seems like a no-brainer, but it’s not as obvious as you think.

Till next time,

Tawny

*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*

Vampilicious Erotic Romance


posted by Tawny Taylor at 5:24 PM | 0 comments

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Seven Habits of Highly Effective (aka published) Authors--Day 5

Wow! We’re at Habit 5 already! Let’s summarize quickly before we move on.

Highly Effective Authors…

1. Write every day.

2. Understand the business side of publishing.

3. Learn how to take criticism.

4. Set goals and meet them.

And now Number 5: Highly Effective Authors learn how to edit (there’s that four-letter word) their own work.

I don’t know if you realize this or not, but self-editing is harder than you think. For one thing, it means the author must realize that every word she’s bled and sweated onto those pages are not golden. No one’s work is perfect. And I’ve found that each writer has both his/her own unique set of strengths and weaknesses.

Sometimes it takes a while for you to learn what your personal strengths and weaknesses are. But take my word for it--If your book gets published but isn’t thoroughly edited, you’ll find out pretty quickly. Reviewers can be harsh critics.

So, if you don’t know what you should be looking for, how can you possibly fix it?

A few suggestions:

You could find a critique group or partner.

If you’re brand new to writing, I highly recommend you find yourself a critique group or partner. For a number of reasons. You’ll learn to take criticism. You’ll polish your craft by critiquing other people’s work. And you’ll take advantage of your partner’s strengths. Ideally their strengths will complement yours.

But I will warn you, not all critique groups/partners are created equal. You still need to have some idea of what kind of help you need before you pick a partner. Do you need help with grammar? Finding redundant words? Tightening writing? Finding your voice? Closing up Swiss-cheesy plots? You need to find a partner with skills in those areas.

You could use a reference book.

There are several nonfiction books out there about how to edit fiction. Most of them concentrate on basic grammar and the technical aspects of writing. So, if you don’t use verbs properly or write loose, twisty-turny sentences, you might get some help. If your weakness is inconsistencies in plotting, they may not do you a bit of good.

You could enter some writing contests to get anonymous feedback.

Contests are a whole ‘nother topic. In fact, I’ve done some blogging about them. Some authors fall into the habit of writing and polishing three chapters, entering hundreds of contests, and never finishing a book. There’s also the problem of conflicting (or downright useless) feedback. At least in RWA chapter-sponsored contests, the judges are often unpublished writers. And these people can get *really* hung up on nitpicky things while missing more important issues (like the fact that the heroine is totally TSTL and should never leap into an erupting volcano). However, if you hear the same thing from every judge who reads your chapter, you can assume there’s a problem.

Conversely, you could volunteer to judge a writing contest.

When you judge someone else’s writing, you’re developing a critical eye, learning what to look for in your own work.

* * * * *

Here are a few suggestions on how to read your work with a more critical eye:

1. Let the book sit for a few weeks and start working on something else. Then go back and read it, cover-to-cover in a single day. Look for dropped threads in your plot.

2. Read it again. This time look for inconsistencies. Is your heroine wearing a blue top in the beginning of a chapter and a red one later? Do your characters undress twice in a scene?

3. Read the book backward, last chapter first, and so on, looking for inconsistencies, dropped threads and holes in your plot.

4. Read it (beginning to end) again, concentrating just on dialogue. Do your characters each have a unique voice? Does the dialogue serve a purpose? Are you using action beats to break up long-winded soliloquies and attribute the dialogue to your characters (versus “he said/she said”/dialogue tags after every line)?

5. Now, read the scenes in each character’s pov’s, skipping the ones in the others’. Make sure each character’s journey is consistent and complete.

6. Read it again, slowly, this time looking for smaller issues, long blocks of narrative (telling), POV abuse, unclear sentences, loose writing, repetitive sentence structure (always starting with “he” or “she” for example) and misused words (who’s/whose, they’re/their/there, it’s/its).

7. Finally, use Word’s Find and Replace feature to highlight weasel words (as, there, then, etc), -ing verbs, adverbs (-ly), and forms of To Be to see what kind of concentration you have of them in your book. Rewrite sentences if you can without making them clunky and awkward (I once went too far with this, and ended up with a huge mess. Some “was’s” are necessary).

I hope these suggestions help! Editing can be painful, but it’s a necessary evil. And the results are definitely worth it.

For more information on editing:

Self Editing by Lori Handeland http://www.eclectics.com/articles/selfediting.html

Self Editing Checklist
http://home.earthlink.net/~jdc24/selfEdit.htm

Elements of Style
http://www.amazon.com/Elements-Style-Fourth-William-Strunk

Self Editing for Fiction Writers
http://www.amazon.com/Self-Editing-Fiction-Writers-Renni-Browne


Tawny

*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*

Vampilicious Erotic Romance

posted by Tawny Taylor at 7:47 AM | 2 comments

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Carnal Hunger--an excerpt

Today I thought I'd post some fun reading--a little teaser of Carnal Hunger, my next Ellora's Cave release (release date TBD, but hopefully I'll hear soon). This is just a part of the excerpt. The rest can be read on my Twilight's Possession site.

Blurb:
Jasmyne Vaughn’s mother has--once again--vanished into the dark world of drug addiction, or so Jasmyne assumes. Until a call in the middle of the night sparks a frantic search in places so depraved Jasmyne couldn’t have imagined them in her worst nightmares. But before she can find her mother, and recover the package her mom has stolen, Jasmyne is kidnapped by two powerful strangers.

Sons of the Twilight Asher Pryce and Draven Falk have their own problems. Asher is desperate to reclaim what has been taken from him. And Draven has learned his conflicting loyalties are going to cost a number of people--Asher included--a dear price. And then there’s the desperate hunger that has driven them both to near death. Propelled by honor, duty and love, the three spend their nights searching for Jasmyne’s mother and the ancient Greek relic she’s stolen. And days spent sating their unrelenting carnal hunger.

Two men, one woman—and a driving sexual hunger that none can resist—in a race against time to save the innocent…or destroy themselves.


Excerpt:

He inhaled deeply, drinking in the aroma of his prey’s terror. He wanted her.

He stooped, swept her into his arms and lowered her to the bed. As expected, she fought him, but he wasn’t as weak from the hunger as Asher. He easily overpowered her, pinning her on her back. He held her hands over her head. Her breasts rose and fell with each rapid gasp. Lust swelled within him. His cock hardened. His balls tightened.

“Now,” he said on a grunt, indicating with his head to Asher. He held her wrists tightly, although he knew the instant one of them bit the woman, the resistance would cease. Cold terror would be replaced by burning desire. Their terrified victim would become a willing participant.

Asher’s hand trembled as he struggled to unfasten her pants. He was going for her femoral artery, a wise choice. But not without its risks. Draven shifted, balancing himself above her torso to keep her still enough for Asher to remove the rest of her clothing from the waist down. Shoes. Socks. Jeans. Cotton panties.

Oh, her scent. A bouquet of woman and soap.

Shrill screams echoed through the room. Between the sounds and smells, he became instantly dizzy, nearly blind with need. “Hurry,” he pleaded as he repositioned himself. He used his arms to secure their quarry but angled his upper body so that he could bend down and taste her skin. More intoxicating scents swept into his nostrils as he nuzzled the crook between her shoulder and the slender column of her neck.

She shrieked again and then went dead still.

Asher had bitten her. His venom was pulsing through her blood vessels. It would take less than ten seconds.

Nine, eight, seven…

He ran his tongue along her jugular. Her heartbeat fluttered beneath her skin, a staccato tempo that beat within him.

Six, five, four…

He ached to sink his teeth into her sweet skin, to drink her essence and then give back the pleasure she deserved. But he had to wait a few more agonizing seconds until Asher had taken what he needed.

Three, two, one…

*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*
Vampilicious Erotic Romance

posted by Tawny Taylor at 12:11 PM | 0 comments

Monday, September 17, 2007

Seven Habits of Highly Effective (aka published) Authors--Day 4

Hello again! I hope you're enjoying this series. I've had a number of people contact me, letting me know it's helping them. I'm grateful for the feedback. Please, if you have questions or comments, don't be afraid to post them. Or, if you're not big on posting on blogs, email me at tawnytaylor@sbcglobal.net

Ready to move on to habit number 4?

Highly Effective Authors set realistic goals and know how to reach them.

When I was just starting out, I was clueless about publishing. I’m not ashamed of that fact. I think I’m in the majority, at least that’s my opinion, based on the comments I’ve heard from new writers. How many times have I heard, “If they’ll publish this crap, anyone can get published.” Or “This is garbage. I should write a book. At least mine’ll be great.” I’m not saying I thought the published books I read were crap. Quite the opposite. But I did think that it would be fairly easy to get a book published. After all, everyone who’d read everything I’d written loooooved it, including my high school creative writing teacher (Hey, don't laugh. Those nuns were tough!)

I was going to be an overnight success.

Heh. Righttttt.

So, my first goal (selling to a major house in one year and making the NY Times list) wasn’t exactly realistic. Anyone want to tell me what’s wrong with that goal, besides the fact that it was close to impossible to achieve?

Going back to day two, Highly Effective Authors know the business side of publishing. They realize the submission process usually involves months and months of waiting. And because of their knowledge, they are able to set themselves up with daily, weekly, monthly and annual goals that are both achievable, aggressive...but most importantly, under their personal control (and yes, this is what was wrong with that first goal).

Highly Effective Authors treat their writing career as a business. As entrepreneurs, they appreciate the need for long and short term goals, realizing those small, well-planned steps will lead them in the right direction a lot more quickly than huge leaps this way and that. And they also understand the smaller successes make it easier to weather the rejection storm that's very likely coming their way.

Highly Effective Authors also possess a certain single-minded determination to reach those goals, no matter what hellish situation real life throws their way. Not that I’m saying anyone should neglect their kids, their sick grandma, or their day jobs--but it’s true. The ones that really want it bad, seem to somehow juggle a lot of obligations.

Okay, so now that we’ve covered the general gist of today’s habit, how does one apply it to him/herself?

A. Begin by sitting down and thinking realistically about what aspects of your writing career you can control. Helpful hint: response times to submissions and acceptance/rejections are outside of your control. Bribery doesn’t work.

B. Decide where you want to be by next year at this time (For instance, “I’ll have three books completed and submitted to ten editors/agents by the start of September” or "I'll have one book completed and submitted to my A-list agents by December"). Be as specific as possible.

C. Determine what steps you need to reach that goal. (Three books equals 1200 pages. That’s 100 pages a month, plus time for editing/polishing. First book edited by December and submitted to the first five editors by January 1.).

D. Break down those steps into manageable daily goals, taking into account some down time--days you won’t be writing, like holidays, weekends, whatever. (30 pages written per week, six days a week, five pages a day)

E. (This one’s the most important) Make the commitment to meeting those goals every day.

F. Finally, celebrate every time you meet those goals. Did you meet your daily page count? Have some chocolate. Or enjoy some time playing on the Divas. Did you finish a book? Treat yourself to a pedicure or a dinner out with someone special. Select whatever rewards that'll keep you going when the temptation to let a goal slip hits you. Believe me, it will.


Do you want to be published so bad it burns in your gut? If so, you’re half way there. Set those goals and work, work, work.

See you next time. I’ll give you a little hint of what’s next. Habit 5’s a four-letter word.

Tawny

*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*

Vampilicious Erotic Romance


posted by Tawny Taylor at 11:57 AM | 0 comments

Friday, September 14, 2007

Taking a Break Today for a Little Celebrating

I think I like the every-other-day thing I've got going with my Seven Habits. So, keeping with that, I'm taking today off to celebrate. (Besides, I'm still feeling like crap--went to the doctor. Pneumonia and strep throat. Double whammy.)

I learned this week that one of my Ellora's Cave novellas will be published by Pocket in an anthology this coming July. With my story (Stolen Goddess) will be two others: Charlene Teglia's Wolf in Shining Armor and Dawn Ryder's Tempting a Lady.

Blurbs:

Stolen Goddess
When Kylie Mannings answers the door on Halloween evening, expecting a couple of toddlers in pumpkin costumes, she quickly learns that candy bars don't make the most effective weapon against kidnappers. In quick order, two thugs have her overpowered and unconscious. To her chagrin, she wakes up nude, tied to a bed, and the prisoner of a strange man. A powerful, very sexy man who insists she's his wife and some kind of goddess. Uh…hello? She's pretty sure she'd remember a little thing like being married. And a goddess…puhleez. If only she could convince her whip-wielding captor of his minor confusion.

Xur Phoenix has gotten his wife, the Goddess of Celestine, back at last. But much to his surprise, she claims she doesn't know him. Whether her supposed memory loss is genuine or a part of another sexy role-playing game doesn't matter. With her bound and helpless, a victim of her own darkest desires, he'll refresh her memory in no time. For her own safety, and his sanity, she needs to remember who her Master is—and fast!

Unfortunately, with a killer on the loose, there's bound to be a few more surprises for them both.

Wolf in Shining Armor
Rorik was bitten by a demon wolf, but the curse has been a blessing in disguise. The rumors that surround the dark Celtic knight unnerve his opponents in the tourneys and aid him in winning the funds he needs to return home, roust the usurping baron who took his lands, and marry the lady Elissa Montreade, his betrothed.

Rorik is thwarted in his plans to live happily ever after with Elissa. Mostly because the baron, Alain Devere, helped himself to her along with Rorik's home and property.

Bent on vengeance, Rorik steals Alain's betrothed, Ailiss, on the eve before their wedding. But his plans for revenge are overthrown when he sees Ailiss and the wolf within recognizes his mate. Once he gets his paws on her, he isn't letting go! Rorik's battle with Devere is nothing compared to the sensual war he wages to claim his captive bride.


Tempting a Lady
As tempting as the summer season might make love appear, Emma knows that it is only an illusion. Fantasies of love in Regency America are for girls, not a woman who has tasted the harsh realities of the marriage bed.

But passion can be far harder to control than mere love—a lesson Emma is about to learn with Julian as her teacher. Julian, in spite of the refined appearance enforced by society, is so much more than the gentlemen Emma has turned aside before. Determined, relentless and driven to have her any way he can, he isn't listening to her polite denials and isn't interested in playing the summer game of courtship.

Instead, Emma finds herself in a far different game where she is the prey and Julian the hunter. Amidst the whispers of the night and hidden within that cloak of darkness, she discovers the driving lusts that tempt the body to listen to passion's song. Temptation becomes the master when the flesh becomes stronger than the will.

And the night becomes the haven where hunger is fed at the hands of a lover who will be her master.


TGIF all! Stay healthy! And have a great weekend. Be back on Monday with the Habit Number Four.

Tawny
*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*
Vampilicious Erotic Romance

posted by Tawny Taylor at 7:43 AM | 2 comments

Thursday, September 13, 2007

Seven Habits of Highly Effective (aka published) Authors--Day 3

Hello again! So far, we’ve talked about two habits for highly effective authors: 1. Writing Every Day and 2. Learning about the Industry/Business side of publishing

Are you ready for habit number three?

3. Highly effective authors learn how to handle criticism.

I've been a member of many critique groups over the years, and there's always one or two (or more) members who expect everyone to love their work. Any "negative" (meaning less than glowing) comment is met with a defensive (or hostile) rebuttal. This works against them in the long run, and puts them at a huge disadvantage later. How?

A. Because critique partners will sooner or later either learn to dance around the truth or give up critiquing altogether. That robs the writer of an opportunity to learn.

And,

B. Because a writer with very thin skin will often have a hard time accepting edits if she/he sells. That will put a strain on his/her relationships with future agents and editors.

Highly effective authors know they'll be criticized on many fronts if their work is ever published. Critique partners. Editors. Agents. Readers. Reviewers. They have no choice but to develop a thick skin. They quickly learn the value of honest and constructive feedback, particularly when it’s coming from a reliable source…and before the book is in print and it’s too late to make changes.

Now, my personal critique partner horror story: I have to admit, I was clueless when I started writing. I was sure EVERYONE would love everything I’d written when I first started. But, thanks to a (now defunct) site called iPublish, which was somewhat similar to Gather’s First Chapter contests, my delusions were quickly squelched. Not everyone loved my work. Some did, yes. But others didn’t “get” it. And some hated it. “Why do you need demons in a romance story?” “Your scenes are overwritten.” and there was the “You don’t know what the hell you’re doing. Go back to kindergarten and learn how to write.”

Did those criticisms hurt? You bet! And (of course) I often felt they were dead wrong. But I learned, after selling and reading my first bad review, that it was better to hear about the bad BEFORE the book was in print, rather than after.

I now embrace the critic. Are they sometimes wrong? Maybe. But I tend to see some truth in every bit of criticism I read of my work. And I take those grains of truth and apply them, hoping the next book will be better.

Remember, it might take one editor to love a story for your book to be published. But it’s going to take thousands of readers to love a story for you to sell your next book.


Learn from the criticism you receive. Grow. Challenge yourself. Resist the urge to post any kind of defense of your work...and be a Highly Effective Author.

Anyone care to share their critique partner horror stories? Post them in the comments.

Tawny

*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*
Vampilicious Erotic Romance



posted by Tawny Taylor at 2:22 PM | 0 comments

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

It was inevitable...

I've got the flu. I tried not to catch it, but with three kids throwing up, coughing, sneezing...breathing... all over me, I just couldn't fight it off :(

Stay tuned for the next installment of Seven Habits tomorrow. By then (I hope), I'll be able to sit up and not see stars.

Until then, you can check out my interview on Lynda Hilburn's blog:
http://paranormalityuniverse.blogspot.com

Enjoy!

*Crawling to the bed...*

Tawny
*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*
Vampilicious Erotic Romance

posted by Tawny Taylor at 8:51 AM | 3 comments

Saturday, September 08, 2007

Seven Habits of Highly Effective (aka published) Authors--Day 2

Okay, so I was lame and didn’t post Habit Number Two yesterday. But, to my defense, I was nursing a house full of sick kids and shuttling them to doctors. I’m hoping today (after dispensing gallons of amoxicillin) I’ll be much more productive. A huge apology to everyone waiting for the rest of the series.

Now that that’s over, I’ll remind you that last week we talked about Habit 1: Writing Daily.


Habit 2. Published authors learn about/understand the business side of publishing.

Highly effective authors aren't shocked when they get their first (or their tenth) rejection. They realize publishing is highly subjective. They have realistic expectations regarding submissions and rejections (unlike me when I first started). And they are determined to keep trying, even when they have collected enough “Dear Author” rejection letters to wallpaper their entire home.

Highly effective authors know how to professionally submit their work. They are able to generate a well-written query letter and synopsis. They use correct manuscript formatting and are well aware of both the do’s and don’ts of submitting. (Side note, for a humorous look at the do’s and don’ts read my How to Not Get Published).

Highly effective authors not only know why they must research publishers and agents (identifying scams, locating submission guidelines, etc.), but how to find what they need on the internet. When they need information, they turn to accurate and reliable sources, such as Writer Beware, Piers Anthony and Predators and Editors, rather than gossip blogs.

And finally, highly effective authors know how publishing works. They know and respect the differences between epublishing and print. They have some understanding of print runs and marketing. Branding and creating buzz. Google Ranking and Amazon Connect. They understand that writing is a craft but publishing is a business, and they realize that in today’s market they have to be both craftsman (craftswoman) and entrepreneur.

Overwhelmed yet? I hope not.

Yes, all this stuff requires reading, research…and yes, time. But again, time spent learning about the industry never interferes with Habit Number One--writing.

Next time, a habit that’s painful to a lot of writers…

Tawny
*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*
Vampilicious Erotic Romance

posted by Tawny Taylor at 9:15 PM | 3 comments

Friday, September 07, 2007

Seven Habits of Highly Effective (aka published) Authors--Day 1

Before I was published, I was desperately searching for the magic formula that would catapult me from unpublished wannabe to published author status. Yes, I was one of those writers, the kind who wanted to be published so bad, I could taste it. And I admit I was looking for shortcuts.

Did I find any shortcuts? Sorry, nope. But I did find some things that could help move me in the right direction. Ready? I think I'll post one "habit" a day for seven days. That way, I won't have this uber-long treatise that no one wants to read, lol.

So what's today's habit?

1. Published authors spend their time writing. Books. Not blogs. Not emails. Not chit-chatty messages on forums or yahoo groups.

They write every day (well, except for holidays and maybe weekends if writing is your full time job).

I can't tell you how many writers I see waste valuable time playing on forums, blogs and yahoo groups. Yes, this kind of activity could be seen as networking, developing a market for future books (a readership) and researching the industry. But the time should be limited and never interfere with time spent actually writing.

In order to keep priorities straight, I recommend a writer set a specific word count/page count goal for every day.

What's a realistic goal? That depends upon your situation. Do you have small children at home? A full time job? Or other time consuming daily obligations? Then maybe your goal will be to write one page a day. That'll get you a book a year.

If you're writing full time, you might be able to tackle a much more aggressive goal. Ten, twenty pages a day is common for some authors, particularly epublished who rely upon frequent ebook releases to generate buzz and steady income.

Whatever that goal might be--one page or twenty--be tough on yourself. No "play time" allowed until your daily goal is met. There's nothing wrong with rewarding yourself with some fun time on Romance Divas AFTER your pages are done :)

Do this, and before long it'll become routine and you'll be cranky if you don't get your pages done for the day.

Okay, so that's it. Habit number one. I'll give you a little hint about tomorrow's habit...it has to do with something that most authors don't want to know about.

Tawny
*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*
Vampilicious Erotic Romance

posted by Tawny Taylor at 8:44 AM | 4 comments

Thursday, September 06, 2007

Free Writing Contest

Rachel Chase just announced the 2007 Chase the Dream writing contest on her blog. For those who aren't familiar with it, this is a free writing contest with some terrific prizes. See below for more information.

Tawny

********************************

CONTEST DETAILS

From September 1, 2007 to November 12, 2007, submit the first 1,000 words or less of an unpublished romance, chick lit, or mainstream fiction with romantic elements novel/novella. Each Tuesday, from September 18, 2007 to November 20, 2007, Rachelle Chase will select a finalist from that week’s entries and post the entry on the Finalists page. Visitors are invited to post comments.

Additionally, each Tuesday from September 18, 2007 to November 20, 2007, Leigh Michaels will select one of the non-winning entries for a mini-critique, which will be posted on the Mini-Critique Winners page. Visitors are encouraged to join the discussion of the critique and learn from each other.

After all the finalist entries have been posted, readers will vote from November 21, 2007 to November 30, 2007 for the top three winners. Names of the winners will be posted on December 12, 2007. In addition to winning prizes, each finalist’s submission will be reviewed by the agents/editors belonging to the contest Panel of Experts.

NOTE: Some of last year’s contest entrants became published as a result of the Chase the Dream contest. View the 2006 Contest page for details.

*********************************

Good luck!

Tawny


posted by Tawny Taylor at 2:33 PM | 0 comments

Wednesday, September 05, 2007

Are Historical Romances On Their Way Back?

After reading discussions about the state of the ever-changing climate here in the romance fiction market, I've come to the conclusion that readers are waiting for historicals to come back in a big way. I'd love to hear more. I think publishers are searching for historicals that take the subgenre in a fresh and exciting new direction. Wouldn't it be great if we could discover what that new direction might be?

What time periods are readers interested in reading about?
What sorts of plots are you intrigued by?
What about genre blends? Historical suspense? Paranormal historical? Historical fantasy?

Let's talk about it, brainstorm. It'll be fun.

Tawny
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Vampilicious Erotic Romance

posted by Tawny Taylor at 7:38 AM | 2 comments

Tuesday, September 04, 2007

A shout out for a Diva friend




Eight years ago, Charlene Henderson had tragically lost her brother, a crab fisherman, to the depths of the Bering Sea. She’d left her home, her family, and the only man she’d ever truly loved and run to California to forget. Forget the pain, forget her love, and leave Alaska and fishermen completely behind her.

Unfortunately Alaska isn’t as ready to leave Charlene alone. Some new information on her brother’s death has surfaced, and Charlene must return to Dutch Harbor and discover the truth about what had really happened to her brother.

Ethan Shannon has never forgotten Charlie Henderson, but eight years changes a person, and she’s not Charlie anymore – she’s Charlene, a stuck-up city girl with no love for the sea. Despite his distaste for her new lifestyle, he can’t help the feelings he still has for her, and his desire to find out what happened to her brother – his best friend.

Peace for Charlene can only come by discovering the truth. But will she be able to face the evidence she finds, both about her brother and her relationship with Ethan? Or will the answers lead her back into the heart of the storm?



BUY IT HERE

posted by Tawny Taylor at 8:11 AM | 1 comments
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