Thursday, March 31, 2011

Spotlight Author with Pam McCutcheon

THE WRITER’S BRAINSTORMING KIT: THINKING IN NEW DIRECTONS and WRITING THE FICTION SYNOPSIS: A STEP BY STEP APPROACH, are two of Pam McCutcheon’s books on the writing craft. I am excited to share my interview with Pam with all of you. Both books are great so if you are looking for a way to brainstorm your next plot or write a selling synopsis she’s your girl!


I came up with this book primarily because I need it! The need for brainstorming strikes me at odd times, usually late at night. My friends wouldn’t appreciate it if I called and insisted they drop everything to help me with a plotting or characterization problem. So, I created this to help me brainstorm. Luckily, it helps others as well. :-)

As for how I came up with it, I have a friend who does tarot reading for characters. So, I wondered…what would it be like to have something similar to a tarot deck but designed specifically for writers? I contacted Michael Waite to help me with it because he’s fabulous at graphics. He designed the book as well as the cards.

I have this book. It is awesome, and very simple to use. Can you explain to us a little bit about how to use it?

There are fifty cards, each with a single word on it such as “Build,” “Faith” and “Rescue,” plus a book that goes along with it, hence the “kit.” Let’s say you want to create a character. You would draw at least seven cards. The first would be for Role/Pursuit and you’d look up the word in the book to get a list of potential occupations or a “Role/Pursuit” that might go along with that word (or its opposite) for your character (protagonist, antagonist, or secondary character—it doesn’t matter). For the “Build” card, some of the options are architect, construction worker, demolition expert, designer, mad scientist, raider, etc. Choose one or let the word spur your imagination to come up with something different. Next, choose one card (or more) for character traits. The card’s options will give you a list of character traits, from positive to negative, that may be associated with that word. You can then choose cards for goal, motivation, internal conflict, external conflict, and the character’s growth or realization at the end of the story. Each aspect of character development has five choices to go along with it. Plotting works the same way. You would draw cards to help determine the Ordinary World, Trigger Event, Turning Points, Black Moment, and Resolution.

Even if two people draw the same cards, they won’t come up with the same story. I conducted a workshop with a writer’s group in Denver, and separated them into groups. Each small group drew five cards and came up with a story using this system. One came up with a dark, angsty historical romance. When I commented on how dark the story was, they blamed it on the cards they drew. But in my experience, it wasn’t just the cards, it was the mindset they brought to it. With the same cards, I came up with a contemporary romantic comedy. And if the card(s) you draw don’t work for you, just draw again.

What is your favorite part about the brainstorming kit?

I love the fact that it can help you create a story from scratch or just draw one card to help with a story problem. It doesn’t matter what genre, what kind of plot, or what kind of character you’re writing, it can help anyone. Most of us have a few different kinds of stories we write and go to those standards again and again. This kit helps us break out of our ruts and think in new and exciting directions. It helps me all the time.

You have also written a book called WRITING THE FICTION SYNOPSIS: A STEP BY STEP APPROACH. Can you tell us a little bit about this book?

As the title suggests, this is a step by step approach to help you figure out to put into your synopsis and, what’s sometimes more important, what to leave out. I use movies as examples and provide several sample synopses at the end of the book so you can see what one looks like.

Why is writing a synopsis important?

Because editors and agents want them. Seriously, the synopsis is your chance to tell your story in a compelling manner that will make the agent want to represent it or an editor want to buy it. Even if they don’t read your whole story at first, they will want to see a synopsis so they know you have a good grasp of story structure. They will also want to know how the story ends. NEVER tell them they have to buy the book to read the ending. Your manuscript will be rejected so fast you’ll get whiplash.

How do you think your book can help aspiring authors to get their work published?

Every writer needs to know how to write a synopsis. If you don’t have a clue where to start, or what should go into one, this can help you figure that out. In fact, I’m always surprised by how many published authors attend my workshop on writing synopses.

What is the best advice on writing, getting published, or trying to find an agent?

The best piece of advice is the one that works for you. That can be different things for different people. Sure, it’s important to learn the mechanics and the market, but the advice that worked for me is to write what you love. Don’t just write what you know, what you think is popular, or what you think will sell. Write about something you feel passionate about. That will shine through in your writing, and that’s the best thing you can do to increase your chances of selling.

Where can we find out more about you and your books as well as how can we purchase these books?

My website ( has more information about my writing books and my fiction (under this name and my two pseudonyms). You can purchase my writing books through my publisher ( Thanks!

Pam McCutcheon

Besides writing books on craft Pam writes romance, young adult, and fantasy.

Look for her latest book as

Parker Blue

Author of the Demon Underground Series, edgy urban fantasy that spans the gap between YA and adult fiction.


The vampires want it. The demons want it too. And someone is willing to kill Val for it.

Val and Fang have to find the powerful Encyclopedia Magicka before either of San Antonio’s warring underworld factions locate it, or the consequences will be deadly for the entire city. As usual, Val’s vampire enemies (they still call her The Slayer), want her dead, and even some of her fellow demons may be less than trustworthy, since they'd like to grab the legendary book of spells before she does. Val has a personal claim to the Encyclopedia--her demon father left it to her when he died--but someone stole it recently. And that can’t be good.

Battling vamps and dodging demons, Val struggles to unravel the mystery and find the thief. At the same time, she's fighting her attraction to sweet, sexy Shade, her favorite shadow demon. Rumor has it that Val will lose her part-demon, vampire-fighting powers if she gives herself to him.

With a crowd of vamps and demons out to trick her or kill her, it’s not a good time for her to risk her job as the city's best vampire hunter by falling in love. The stakes are high and aimed right at her heart. But Lola, Val's hungry little lust demon, doesn't like being denied. Will Lola finally get her way?

What’s a part-lust-demon-teen supposed to do? Whatever it takes.

Thanks to Pam and to all of my readers. Make sure to check out Pam’s books. See you back here on Tuesday when I have, Barbara Silkstone as my guest.



Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Spotlight Autor with Beth Ciotta

The weather is finally starting to warm up. I am sitting at my sons baseball practice while working on this blog. I love this time of year. Everything is so bright and colorful everywhere you look. Today I have Beth Ciotta visiting us.

Hi, Micole and thanks so much for having me here.

It is my pleasure Beth. Tell us a little about your latest release INTO THE WILD.

INTO THE WILD is a romantic adventure in the style and spirit of Indiana Jones and Romancing the Stone. I had a blast researching the Amazon jungle and Andes Mountains as well as a real life legendary Inca treasure. Not to mention bringing together a thrill-seeking hero and quirky heroine. I’ll share the blurb with you as it really does sum up the story well!
When River Kane's fiancĂ© abandons her at the altar for being too conventional, she's heartbroken. But everything changes when her estranged archaeologist father sends her his journal—filled with cryptic maps and a note indicating he's in mortal danger. Worried, River faces her greatest fears and flies to the Amazon to find him. But she needs a guide. Someone completely unlike danger-seeker Spenser McGraw.
A charismatic treasure hunter who thrives on risk, Spenser hosts the popular TV show Into the Wild, dedicated to locating lost treasures and mythical icons. But River's father's life depends on discretion, and too-sexy Spenser is all about publicity. Forced to team up, they embark on a jungle adventure ripe with temptation and danger…ultimately discovering a hidden treasure that could alter history—and a steamy love neither expected.

What are you working on now?

I’m thrilled to announce that I recently contracted with St. Martin’s Press to write four books in a new series called THE CUPCAKE CLUB. Contemporary romantic comedies set in a small town, featuring eccentric lovable characters, too-die-for heroes, dynamic heroines and the antics and accomplishments of The Cupcake Club.

I also contracted with NAL (Penguin) to write a new series: THE GLORIOUS VICTORIOUS DARCYS. Steampunk romantic adventure. What fun!

I’m presently writing the first book in The Cupcake Club and simmering on book one of The Darcys. Needless to say, my days are crammed. But happily so.

What do Beth Ciotta fans have to look forward to in 2011?

Four books from my backlist—JINXED, CHARMED, SEDUCED, and LASSO THE MOON will be available this year for the first time on Kindle, Nook, and various other ebook formats. The first three titles will be issued with exciting new covers! Also available this year in ebook formats, three paranormal romance novels that I wrote (SCANDALOUS SPIRITS, KINDRED SPIRITS and KNIGHT OF MY DREAMS) under the name CB Scott, along with my critique partner and friend, Cynthia Valero. I’m hoping readers will discover and enjoy these previous works while waiting for my new releases—coming in 2012.

Give us a glimpse into your writer’s life.

Well, it’s not as glamorous as some may think, but it’s a satisfying and happy life. Since I presently work a full time day job, I do all of my writing at nights and on weekends. That’s also when I take care of writing ‘business’, including promotional efforts and social networking. It’s hard to fit booksignings into my busy schedule, but I do attend various writer and reader conferences. I love interacting with readers and fellow writers as well as attending workshops. Conferences are almost always the highlight of my year!

How do you think that your life experiences in have influenced your writing career?

My background in entertainment has played a major part in many of my novels. So have my small town roots, my travel adventures, and experiences as a PR coordinator and library assistant. My fears and insecurities, dreams and beliefs also factor in. And then there are the people I’ve met, the relationships I’ve developed. Drawing on life experiences lends realism to my stories. On the other hand, I also research and write about what I’d like to experience, for real or on a fantasy level.

What’s one thing that you know now that you wished you knew when you started your journey as a writer?

Hmm. That’s a hard one. I’m not really sure. Perhaps…. It never gets easier. The writing or the business. Publishing is always a challenge on one or another level.

Do you have any advice on writing, getting published, or finding an agent?

Always strive to hone your craft. No matter how much you learn, you can always learn more. No matter how well you write, you can always write better. Other than that… the key ingredients are determination and perseverance.

If you had to pick a favorite character that you have created or one that you wish you had created who would it be and why?

I’m in love with quite a few of my characters, but my favorite is probably Evie Parish from ALL ABOUT EVIE, EVERYBODY LOVES EVIE, and EVIE EVER AFTER. I identify with her in so many ways and had so much fun living vicariously through her. Not to mention I absolutely adore her hero.

What is the Romantic Times Convention that you will be attending?

The RT Convention is an annual book lover’s convention attended by writers (pubbed and pre-pubbed), librarians, booksellers, publishing industry professionals, cover models, and lots and lots of readers! The days are packed with worshops and the nights feature fabulous parties and other special events. This year the fun takes place in Los Angeles. For details visit

I read in your bio that you wrote and directed the Mr. Romance Pageants for the Romantic Times Conventions. I can only imagine how fun that must’ve been. Are you still involved in doing that? Can you tells us a little bit about it?

Fun, yes, but also a lot of hard work. Because of my hectic work and writing schedule these past few years, I passed the baton as writer/director of the show. However, I’ve co-hosted the show with musician/actor and former Mr. Romance, Mark Johnson in the past and will do so again this year. Mark and I always have a blast and this year will be even better as we’ll be joined by actress/author Harley Jane Kozak and model (also a former Mr. Romance) David Alan Johnson. The contestants (several handsome, talented models) compete in three categories and the winner will pose for the cover of a major NYT publishing company’s release. Basically, we’re searching for the today’s ‘Fabio’.

Thank you, Beth for sharing yourself with us today. Where can we find out more about you and your books?

Here are my three main hangs:
My website:
My blog:
You can learn about past, present and future releases at any of these site, but for the most and latest action, join me on Facebook.
It’s been a pleasure Micole. Thank you!

Readers… I will see all blog you here on Thursday when I have Pam McCutcheon talking to us about the dreaded synopsis. Until then…

Cyber Hugs


Saturday, March 26, 2011


Good morning everyone,

I'm sorry, I was away from my computer all day yesterday and didn't get the list of winners until this morning. Yikes. Okay so here we go... can I get a drum roll please.............


Maeve will send her fell manuscript for consideration to Donna O'Brien.


Elizabeth and Eden will send the first three chapters for consideration.


Thank you for stopping in to my blog.



Thursday, March 24, 2011

Acquiring Editor Donna O'Brien from Crescent Moon Press

Hey Donna, I am so happy to share my blog space with you today. Can we start off by having you tell the readers a little bit about yourself?

Thanks so much for having me Micole! Let’s see condensed version…I’ve got four kids, and two grandgirls. My husband and I will celebrate our 25th Anniversary this year and he is my real life hero.

Tell us about the publishing house that you work for, Crescent Moon Press.

Short version: Completely awesome! A little longer version: Crescent Moon Press was formed as an independent boutique publisher and prides itself on writing out of the box story lines as well as its professionalism. We support our authors and provide assistance with marketing, publish simultaneously in print and digital formats and allow considerable input as far as cover design and titles.

Does Crescent Moon Press accept non agented writers?

Yes we do. We believe that diamond in the rough deserves a chance as well as the polished gem. So both agented and non-agented writers are welcome at CMP.

Is there something specific you are looking for in a manuscript?

I am actively seeking urban fantasy, sci-fi, time travel, high fantasy, a great new twist on an old myth, anything dark, dangerous and full of beings with that something extra that bring make believe to life, fast paced YA, and New Adult (17-25 y/o protags) with more on their mind than school and dating. If the premise is powerfully unique, the voice unforgettable, and the writing pristine, then I want to see that story.

What do you not want to see?

I do not want to see the same old, same old or a fabulous plot poorly written. That’s sooo disappointing.

Once you have fallen in love with a manuscript, where does it go from there?

I send a desperate plea to my publisher to let me buy the manuscript with a description of the story and why I think it would be marketable. If I get the approval, then I send an offer to the author.

What does a day in the life of an acquiring editor look like?

BUSY!!! LOL Reading submissions and queries, requesting fulls if I like the query. Editing manuscripts. Responding to authors questions about the progress of their book. Calming their anxieties if they are a new author. Rejecting queries. E-mails galore! Attending a conference here or there to accept pitches. Approving blurbs and bios. Um….I’m sure I left something out. Maybe eating something once and a while and then there’s the mom stuff too. ;)

Thank you Donna, for spending the day with us here at Micole Writes Romance.

Thanks again for having me Micole! I’d also like to invite any of your readers out there who are going to attend the RT Convention in April, to look me up. I’ll be available at the Crescent Moon Press Publisher’s Spotlight as well as taking pitches on Wednesday!

And because I had such a busy week and didn’t get a chance to pick a winner for the contest yet, we are going to extend it until Friday!! So if you haven’t entered yet, get your first and last line entered!! Good luck!

Make sure to get those pitches in readers. I can’t wait to announce the winners!!! Thank you all for spending your precious time with Donna and I today. Take care and I will see you her tomorrow when we announce the winners!

Until then. Xoxoxoxoxoxoxoxo


Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Contest extended for two more days

ANNOUNCEMENT!!!! The contest with Acquiring Editor, Donna O'Brien of Crescent Moon Press has been extended for 2 more days. If you didn't get a chance to enter, now is your chance. Today is your lucky day!!!! Details are on the side bar of my blog!!! If you have any questions, make sure to leave them in the comment section and I will get back to you as soon as I can today! All winners will be announced on Friday!



Tuesday, March 22, 2011


I hope all of my writer friends and everyone out there who is thinking about writing has been enjoying all of the guests that I have been bringing for you. I know I can always use writing tips and the people that I have brought are some of my favorites! Martha Engber is another one of my very favorites!!! Her book GROWING GREAT CHARACTERS FROM THE GROUND UP is awesome! She is here to talk to us about it today. So please read through and if you don't already have a copy of this book, run and get it! You won't be sorry.

This excellent book is our topic of discussion for today.

Q: So tell us Martha, how do you grow great characters from the ground up?

A: The idea behind my book is that a great story — because who’s interested in writing just an okay story? — should stem from within a great main character. Despite her outward appearance of beauty, wealth, confidence or other public persona, the character should be deeply afraid of something, whether it’s of being abandoned or being alone or being unlovable. Then throughout the book, the character must confront obstacles of ever-increasing size and intensity that push her closer and closer to that fear until she has to face the monster.

GROWING GREAT CHARACTERS takes authors by the hand and shows them how to develop such great characters from inception to maturation in a process that once learned, writers can then apply to all of their characters so that stories become peopled with vibrant, deep, interesting characters.

Every chapter of my book involves both fiction and nonfiction writing examples to demonstrate concepts, along with writing exercises, which if followed, will help writers develop a character from start to finish.

Q: What made you decide to write a book about writing great characters?

A: The seed of the idea — if you’ll pardon the pun — stemmed from a rejection letter from an agent who wrote, “I just couldn’t connect with your main character.”

I puzzled over that very frustrating remark until I realized that while I knew a lot about my character, I didn’t know her.

Writers tend to develop characters by throwing a lot of details onto one big heap. Hair color, where they live, their profession, their favorite colors, what they like to read, etc. Yet these details are often pulled at random, so that when the reader sees all of these facts put together, the picture doesn’t make sense. We tell readers characters as supposed to be shy, yet their actions and dialogue strike readers as pushy to the point of snooty. Or those who are supposed to be organized instead seem to rush around in a very disorganized, inefficient way. Still other characters are supposed to be smart, but then act dumb.

I realized that maybe instead of throwing together random pieces of information, I should instead choose one very specific detail that would serve as a key for readers, allowing them to understand the simple internal rule by which my character lives.

I wrote about the concept for a magazine for writers. A man who subscribed to the magazine, Harvey Stanbrough, contacted me, saying he’d written two books for Central Avenue Press’s Thorough Primer for Writers series and that the publisher was looking for a book about character development. I wrote a proposal and sent it in. The process of actually writing the book then made me think through every stage of the character development process to a breathtaking degree.

Q: Being a writer of fiction yourself, what is your favorite part of the process of creating a character?

A: It’s the moment when the character takes on life. In that moment, the story is no longer in my hands, but in hers. Now I have to follow where she leads. In that moment, she’s usually off like a shot, so that I’ve got to race along behind her in a journey that’s startling and unbelievably exhilarating.

Q: What would you say the hardest part of creating a character thoroughly is?

A: The hardest part for most characters is what I’ve just described above, allowing their characters to take off and be their own people, acting as they must according to the natures they’re born with.

Writers are usually extremely hesitant to let characters out of their hands, which I address in my chapter titled Freedom to Grow. The reason writers are typically unwilling to unleash their characters is because the writers don’t really know their characters, which is usually not what writers want to hear!

That’s why I take pains in my book to show readers the means by which they can truly come to know who their characters are and what makes them tick. Once writers understand that, they realize they can relinquish control, because they’ll be able to follow no matter where their characters go or what they do.

Q: What do you do or what should we do as writers when a character just won’t cooperate with us?

A: Usually I find that when a character is not behaving as I want, I’m attempting to force the character to do something that’s against her nature because I’ve already determined where the story is supposed to go. This is why so many writers find that they love all their side characters, whereas their main characters are flat. The reason is they don’t expect anything from those side characters, who are then free to act according to their natures, whereas our main characters are lumbering under all of our expectations.

Therefore it’s crucial for writers to unload those main characters and allow them to take the lead.

Q: What steps as writers can we take to get to know our characters better to make our readers connect with them 100%?

A: Read my book! Read many books! The bottom line is that creating a great character is not a simple task. We writers have to hunker down and keep burrowing until we find our characters’ greatest fears, which will in turn show us what’s most important to them and how they’re motivated to act.

Typically we writers can be impatient to an incredible degree. We steamroll over countless nagging clues that indicate we don’t yet know our characters and then wind up frustrated when our readers complain they can’t really connect with the characters, when really, neither can we.

Therefore, pay attention to what I call the nags!

In my book, I counsel writers to use a variety of methods to check their thinking at every point in the process to discover and take care of weak spots at the time their occur, rather than attempting to deal with them once they’re embedded within the manuscript.

Q: Besides writing books on craft, Martha you also teach workshops. What kind of workshops do you offer and where or how can one participate?

A: I teach a variety of workshops, all of which are described on the For Event Planners page of my website. I teach 8-lesson, month-long online classes through such organizations as and Women Writing the West and in-person workshops at conferences and bookstores. If you’re interested in having me teach at your next conference or online via an RWA chapter, please contact me at Also feel free to join Growing Great Writers From the Ground Up, my Q & A blog for writers, or contact me/connect via any of the following methods:

Martha’s website

Martha’s blog



Facebook fan page



Amazon Author Central

workshop testimonials

Martha, I always love having you here on my blog. Thank you for returning, and for sharing your books with us. You and your books are truly inspirational.

A: Thanks for having me! I love talking to fellow writers.

Thanks to all of my readers. I hope you enjoyed this learning experience. make sure to drop in on Thursday when I will have Acquiring Editor, from Crescent Moon Press here with us. See you then.


Friday, March 18, 2011


Good morning friends… WOW two blogs in two days!!! Pretty exciting right??? Well I thought you all might be interested to hear about a contest that is going on right here on my blog. My good friend, and acquiring editor, Donna O’brien has agreed to do a contest. The entrances must be ROMANTIC TALES OF FANTASY, SCIENCE FITCION, OR PARANORMAL stories. One lucky entrance will win a read of their full manuscript by Donna. Two lucky writers will get to submit their first three chapters. You will find all of the details below. And if you lose track of this blog post you can always check the side bar of my blog. All of the important stuff will be there! ;-) I am so excited. All of you writers out there get your first and last lines ready! Make sure to share the contest details with all of your writers friends and tell them to stop by the blog and enter. Good luck!!!!

How important is that first sentence? Extremely! But so is your final sentence because it’s the last thing your readers take away from your novel. Your final chance to make a lasting impression, if you will. ;) So enter your First Line AND your Last Line for a chance to submit the full manuscript to Crescent Moon Press!

1. Submit the first and last sentence only of your manuscript to Crescent Moon Press Acquisitions Editor, Donna O’Brien via e-mail: by midnight on March 22, 2011.
2. Check the Micole Writes Romance blog @ on March 24, 2011, to see if you won.
3. There are three chances to win: 2nd and 3rd place will be able to submit their first three chapters and a synopsis and 1st place will be able to submit their full manuscript to Editor Donna O’Brien.
4. Crescent Moon Press publishes high quality fantasy, futuristic, and paranormal romantic fiction. See their website @ for more details.

If your full has that all important first line that will hook a reader and make them want to continue and a last line that will keep them coming back for more, then what are you waiting for? Submit them to Donna O’Brien, Crescent Moon Press Acquisitions Editor today!

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Mary Buckham visits Micole Writes Romance

I told you that I wanted to give back to all of my writing friends over the next couple of months. I am so excited about my guest!!! Today I have brought Mary Buckham and she is blogging about creativity as well as doing an a giveaway.


I’d like a share a few thoughts on creativity. Because being creative, and living our creativity, is at the heart of every writer.

“Every child is born an artist. The problem is how to remain an artist once he grows up.” – Pablo Picasso.

Were you aware that 90% of five-year olds see themselves as highly creative? That in itself is not amazing, but wrap your minds around the concept that by the age of seven, 80% of us who saw ourselves as creative no longer believe we are. That means only 10% of seven-year olds believe they are creative. By the time we reach our teens that number drops to 2% and remains fairly constant throughout our adult lives.

So if you’re a writer, or a painter, or sculptor, etc., count yourself among the few who have never, ever given up on a gift given to many, but realized by few.

To savor and honor that gift here are five steps to continue to empower your own creativity.

Step 1) Remove Creativity Killers. Sometimes the words are said by others, sometimes from within, so if you catch others, or yourself saying any of the following then you’ve run into a Creativity Killer. Follow the Rules. Don’t Ask Questions. It’s Hard. Be Practical. Be Serious. Think of [fill in the blank]. You Can’t Afford [fill in the blank]. Yes, but. You Don’t Have the Time. You Don’t Have the Money. Don’t Be Foolish. The list goes on and on. Great news is you don’t have to buy into the Creativity Killers.

Step 2) Develop a Creative Environment. You know best what spurs ideas, fuels your passion, creates energy. Is it color? Certain objects? A wide horizon? A secluded space? Honor your sacred creative space, whether it’s a desk top, a room or something else, and it will honor you. So take a good look at your working environment. Does it foster your creativity? If it doesn’t, how can you change it?

“A new idea is delicate. It can be killed by a sneer or a yawn; it can be stabbed to death by a quip and worried to death by a frown on the right man’s brow” – Charlie Bower

Step 3) Surround yourself by people who support you and challenge you to be the best at what you want to accomplish or do, not what they want you to accomplish or do. The more time you spend with creative people engaging in creative activities, the more creative you will become. Conversely, the more time you spend with nay-sayers or limited thinkers, the more time . . . you can fill in this answer. Who are you surrounding yourself with?

“Reaching new goals and moving to a higher level of performance requires change, and change feels awkward, but, take comfort in the knowledge that if a change doesn’t feel uncomfortable, then it’s probably not really a change.” John C Maxwell.

Step 4) Challenge yourself constantly and be willing to feel uncomfortable. Delight in exploring something new, something different for you. What have you done lately to push your comfort levels? To challenge yourself? When have you broken your routine? Driven a different route home or read in a genre different than the ones you usually read? When have you tasted a new cuisine? Explored a new location? Daily we’re given opportunities to push our limits, so what’s holding you back?

Step 5) Creative thinkers don’t fear failure. Why? Because they hold a different expectation of what failure means. Didn’t achieve what you had hoped for? For many this is considered a failure, but what if it meant something different? Any situation holds the seeds of new knowledge, self-awareness and new direction.

“The difference between average people and achieving people is their perception of and response to failure.” – John C Maxwell

Creativity requires a willingness to look stupid. It means getting out on a limb, knowing that the limb often breaks! And if it does, take that opportunity to spread your wings and fly!

So what about you? What does creativity mean to you? How have you faced the highs and the not-so-highs of being creative or wanting to feel creative? Feel free to comment and out of those who do comment one name will be drawn for a copy of BREAK INTO FICTION™: 11 Steps to Building a Story That Sells or a Fiction book of your choice depending on the genre you love.

Mary’s BIO:

Mary Buckham is an award-winning fiction writer, co-author with Dianna Love of BREAK INTO FICTION: ™: 11 Steps to Building a Story That Sells from Adams Media, co-founder of and a highly sought after instructor both on-line and at live workshops around the country. To find out more about Mary, her Manuscript, Synopsis and Query help, her Lecture Packets, Workshops and Writing projects visit

Thank you Mary for all of the great creative advice, and thank you readers!!!!

Happy writing and being creative! ;-)


Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Spotlight Author with Loucinda McGary

Hello readers. Today I have Loucind McGary visiting the blog.

Loucinda, tell us a little bit about your latest releas THE WILD IRISH SEA.

My latest book The Wild Irish Sea, like my previous two books, is a contemporary romantic suspense with paranormal elements. This one is set in County Donegal in the Republic of Ireland and is about a pair of twins who have always had mental telepathy. When one of them inadvertently witnesses a murder, his life is in danger and his sister rushes to Ireland to try and save him. There’s also a sexy but anguished Irish police detective, some precocious kids, dangerous smugglers and the legend of a selkie prince all thrown into the mix as well.

What are you working on now?

The first book in what I hope will be a series. It is a romantic suspense set on a cruise ship.

Also, my book, The Wild Sight was recently offered as a free download on Kindle and hit #1 on their Free Bestseller list. So I’m working on a novella that is a bit of a prequel to The Wild Sight that I hope to offer on Kindle.

What is your favorite thing about being an author?

READERS! Nothing is more gratifying than to hear that someone read and enjoyed one of my books. I’m amazed at how far away some of my readers are! I’ve received fan mail from Australia, New Zealand, Romania, and Malaysia to name a few places.

It is a dream come true for me to be able to share my stories with readers near and far! Readers definitely make all the crazy parts of the publishing business worthwhile.

When did you know you wanted to pursue a writing career?

I always wanted to, and I wrote off and on for many years. But I didn’t get serious about pursuing publication until I quit my Dreaded Day Job (DDJ) at the end of 2003. I made my first sale almost four years (and many many rejections) later in September, 2007.

Some writers say that they have a story that has to be told other’s say that the characters come to them and demand that their story be told… how does it work for you?

Generally my characters come first. They arrive in my imagination with their names and looks intact. Then they start to reveal their backstories to me, and eventually I get an idea for a plot for their current story.

Where does your inspiration come from?

Everywhere! No really, I never quite know what will inspire me.

For The Wild Irish Sea, I was inspired by the beautiful movie The Secret of Roan Inish and an interest in twins spurred on by my twin grand-nephews. My second published book, The Treasures of Venice was inspired by an opera The Jewels of the Madonna written by Venetian composer Ermanno Wolf-Ferrari. My first book, The Wild Sight was partially inspired by a genetic anomaly called the Niall Marker that I stumbled across while doing research on Ireland.

Do you have any advice or writing secrets for aspiring authors?

I wish I had a writing secret! Unfortunately, there is no secret other than hard work and persistence.

My advice is to keep learning and improving your craft. Finish what you start! Don’t sit around and wait for your muse, just keep showing up every day and plugging away. And keep sending your work out. Rejections are hard, but you have to stay in the game to get to that one yes.

Where do you see yourself in five years?

Still writing and I hope readers will still be enjoying my stories.

Loucinda, thank you for being my guest today on Micole Writes Romance. Where can we find out more about you and your books?

My website is:

I also blog with the Romance Bandits:

And I have my own personal blog, Aunty Cindy Explains It All:

Thank you so much, Micole, for having me as your guest today!

Loucinda has offered one lucky commenter a copy of her book, THE WILD IRISH SEA. Thank you all for stopping by, now make sure to say hi.



Friday, March 11, 2011

Will the REAL Jake Morgan please stand up...

I promised three-parts to my hero blog’s. So here you have it… #3. Yesterday, you read about “my” character, Jake Morgan. A character that I crafted myself, spent days thinking about, hours writing and re-writing, and well... perfecting. When I was through, he was what I wanted.

There is an interesting story that goes along with that crafting of my character. Like many writers I do what I can to create a character in my mind, I mold and shape their personality, even the way they look. While I was working on Jake, I had a vision of who he was and what he looked like. A clear vision like no other character I have worked with before. I searched through magazines trying to find a man that looked even just a little bit like the man that I saw so clearly in my brain.

More than a year had passed and I was still searching through those magazines, yet I found nothing. Until one day at the grocery store. I happened to pick up one of my favorite magazines and thumb through it, trying to decide if I wanted to buy it. I thought I was going to have a stroke when I opened the cover of the magazine. Right there staring back at me was Jake Morgan. What the heck was he doing in there when I had been searching so long for him? Hiding between the pages of a magazine apparently.

My heart raced as I quickly put the magazine into the cart. I could hardly believe Jake Morgan was between those pages. This man I had been living with in my mind for so long, finally I had his picture! As soon as I got home, I tore the picture from the cover and put him in the front of the binder that held all of my info on Morgan Ranch. I felt like everything was complete.

A few weeks after I made the discovery, I happened to be on myspace. I was new to the site and searching for writer friends to connect with. When fate stepped in and I happened to stumble across Jake Morgan again, this time it was his myspace page. Interestingly enough, his name wasn’t really Jake Morgan, he called himself Joshua Smith. What did I do you asked? What any other normal person would do. I messaged him on myspace and begged him to be my friend. Well sort of… I did really message him, but I told him that I was working on a book and that I had seen his picture in the COWBOYS & INDIANS magazine and using his image as a hero in my book. He responded by accepting my friendship and asking me to give him a call. So I did. We’ve kept in contact since and he was even nice enough to let me interview him. So here you go… “MY” Jake Morgan who calls himself… Joshua Smith.

Joshua, tell me a little bit about what you do…

- “Goodness, there is quite a bit to that question. I would first and foremost, I would say I am a horseman, I truly have been blessed with a gift to understand animals. I have worked on and managed equine facility’s for the past ten year’s which comes with a lot of different jobs rolled into one, which would include; feeding and nutrition values of feed, stall management, pasture management, carpentry, welding, fencing, haying, irrigation, plumbing, and electrical. Not to mention working with horses that have people problems, giving riding lessons, starting horses, and training horses. I was raised working a commercial cattle outfit, so I know being around horses and cattle have been the greater part of my life. So, at most equine facility’s I have had to take care of cattle, too.”

What was your reaction when you heard that your picture inspired me to make “you” a character in a romance novel?

-“I was a red as anything has ever made me! I blushed, my heart raced, I thought to myself… she’s got to have the wrong guy, when you found me on Myspace! I think it was about two years after the photo shoot for Stetson so every now and again someone might recognize me, but not very often. Mostly just friends would call and tell me they saw me here or there; NFR, Horse Congress, magazine’s, in a store somewhere… but I could never have even begun to think about that!! I had never even read a romance novel… Louis L’Amor is about the only fiction novel’s I’ve read!”

Having read most of Morgan Ranch, do you feel that you have any similarities to the character your photo inspired, Jake Morgan?

-“I would have to say in reading Morgan Ranch, I found myself picturing the ranch setting with other ranches I have worked or visited. Thinking about a father I had lost half-a-lifetime ago (if he left me a ranch), what feelings would I have in Jake’s shoes… and the more I read, the more I saw many similarities!”

If yes, what would the similarities be?

-“First off, my father and I never saw eye to eye. He and my mother where divorced very early on in my life and had a very strained relationship and he never made the effort to try to understand me. He came to one of baseball games growing up… I played all the way through a Jr. College. He was never into ranching like I am, I had to learn from my uncle…my stand in father! So, the conflict with my father, although not exactly like Jake’s… I really understand.

Secondly, Jake was not in his father’s life when his father past and they were not even speaking. I can understand that all to well! My father called me when I was fourteen and told me to tell my older sister (who he adopted at 4 yrs old) to not expect to see or hear from him again in the most matter of fact tone and hung up the phone on me. He did called me again when I was seventeen and wanted to talk, so being the mature kid I was… I hung up, twice! He passed away twenty some days later from Leukemia. After calling my mother at work and her rushing home to get me to go see him, we had a very short and strained relationship. I had many years of drinking too much, partin’ to hard, and heaps of women... like Jake from that absence in my life. I just need to find that one gal for me!

You have been on television, been an extra in a movie, as well as the Stetson model, and now a rancher. Out of everything that you’ve done what has been the most satisfying and why?

-“Well, thank you for taking notice of the some of my most recent accomplishments! Being on the T.V. was great… but, forgotten quickly if your show is not in re-runs. I have been in several movies… but if you’re not the star, you’re just in the background. I really liked being the spokes model for Stetson… during the shoot they didn’t want me to smile… and I like to laugh a lot! They wanted me to just stare into the distance, so I thought of all those days I spent out to sea in the Navy… just being lost in the loneliness of the oceans! I have ranched with my family as far back as I can remember and have had some of the closest, fun, hard working times I can remember… and that is what has made me who I am today! I really think that I have found who I am by being around horses, I can’t make them do one thing if it is not their idea to do it. I have had to learn from horses to be able to teach horses! I had the desire to be around them, not for horse to be around me… and that is why I can say the most satisfying thing I’ve done is to live on ranches and start horses!!

Thank you Micole,

Life is crazy sometimes. I think it was fate that we connected the strange way that we did. Without the Internet it would have never happened. I am so happy that we have become friends. Joshua is a great guy and he has been so kind to let me interview him as well as borrow his pictures for the work on my book and my blog. The picture I am including today, (at the top of the blog) is the one I want to be the cover of my book if it is ever published! I just love it. Thank you, Joshua.

Thank you all for reading. see you on Tuesday, when I have Loucinda McGary visiting.



Thursday, March 10, 2011

All This Talk About Hero's...

After all of this talk about hero’s I’ve decided to make this a three-part blog. Yesterday’s re-run blog of WHAT MAKES A HERO HUNKY being the first of the three.

With all of this talk about heroes I thought I would bring one of my favorites out of the closet. His name is Jake Morgan. Many of you who have gotten a peek at my manuscript, Morgan Ranch have been introduced to him. In fact, if you stopped by my blog yesterday for the hunky hero bit, you caught a glimpse of him. That picture that I posted at the top of the blog is “my” Jake Morgan. Just in case you missed it, I decided to include another picture of him. (see picture at the top of the blog)

In my interviews, I ask many of my guest authors to pick a favorite character of theirs that they have created. Most reply exactly the same. “It would be like trying to pick a favorite child. I just can’t do it.” I understand. I really do, and maybe because I only have one finished manuscript at the moment and I am not published, it is a little easier for me to pick. Out of all of the characters that run through my head on a daily basis, Jake Morgan is my favorite.

He is a very complex hero. A man that was so closed off to me and to the rest of the characters in Morgan Ranch. It wasn’t until I got close to finishing the book that I realized how well I really knew him. I knew what he wanted, and what he was all about. I don’t even think he knew until the end of the book that all he really wanted was to settle down with Cody on Morgan Ranch and start a family. He spent so much of his time trying to get away from the ranch, from his past, and from his father’s ghost that it caught up with him. He spent so much of his time trying to prove to himself that Cody was not the woman for him even though his body deceived him every time she was around. It wasn’t until he almost lost everything that it hit him like a ton of bricks. He was a tortured soul, but only by himself. And he left a trail of bleeding hearts wherever he went. Mine especially!

He was a character that I spent many hours a day dreaming about, because of course he was my vision of loveliness. But he also had all of the qualities that I described in yesterdays post. He was old fashioned and up with the times. But most of all, he loved his lady, more than life itself, and when he figured it out, it brought him to his knee’s. By the end of the book, he would’ve done anything she asked.

I think that’s all any of us want in the end.... someone to love us so much they would do anything of them that we ask.

The next installment will include an interview with the real Jake Morgan! Thanks for stopping in.

See you tomorrow.



Wednesday, March 9, 2011

What makes a hero hunky repost...

What makes a hero hunky?

This blog originally posted October of 2010, but I am bringing it back, because I thought it would be fun to do a segment on Hero's. I am in the process of reworking my first manuscript and loved my hero in that book. I was finished with the book before I started blogging, so I never really got the opportunity to let all of you drool over him. So enjoy the blog again and come back tomorrow for the second installment of a three-part blog mini series! ;-)

Hero’s come in all shapes and sizes. Thanks be to God for that! The best thing about being a writer is that I can shape and form my characters into what I want out of them. For example… I love a tall (6’5”), rough and rugged, hard-working, hard-to-tame, cowboy. The more stubborn the man the better I like him. I want a man who thinks he knows what he wants until he meets his heroine and then he falls to his knee’s (in a not so noticeable way to the heroine) in love with her. He fight’s his feelings but in the end he is tamed by his lady.

Call me primitive. Hey, maybe I am. That’s what I like. I am all about that Alpha male. You know… the one beating his chest. Ha ha. Maybe that’s going a little too far. But I still want the man to be the one in charge (or at least think he is)(wink). Now a days when writing a book, we are told that our heroine has to be strong, able to take care of herself. And yes I do agree with that to a certain extent. But let’s be real. How many of you ladies still want a car door opened for you or the door of a building? A man to take your hand, or pull out a chair for you? How about paying for dinner? What the hell is this going Dutch crap all about? Or the woman paying for the meal? I’m not sure where that came in?

Hero’s are usually defined as someone who serves and protects us everyday, someone who rescues kittens from a tree, people from a burning building or fights for his life and our freedom in a war. Hero’s are roll models to all of us. They are who we hope our children will take lessons from. They are such amazing people. But not everyone can be pulling someone from a burning building or fighting for our country. God Bless all of our everyday hero’s.

There are also the hero’s that teach us things about ourselves. The one’s that take care of us and show us how to love ourselves and that we can be loved—the prince that rides in on his white horse to save the day. A hero can be so many things. He is something and someone different to each individual.

And what makes a hero attractive can be so much more than just their hunkiness, ie. tall, dark, handsome, Mr. Muscles, dark hair, blond hair, wavy or straight hair, blue eyes brown eyes, eyes dark as coal, dimples, bronzed skin and well even that all famous cowboy hat. All of those things are just an extra incentive. (wink)

So this is what I want to know. What makes your hero hunky? Think about this and leave me a comment.

I am looking forward to hearing from all of you. Make sure to come back tomorrow when we talk more about hunk hero's, namely mine!Thanks for stopping by Micole Writes Romance.



Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Spotlight Author with Barbara Baig

Hello friends. I have a wonderful author with me today, Barbara Baig. Remember I told all of you at the beginning of the year that I was working on some things to improve my blog? Well this is one of them. I thought it would be nice to help out my writing friends as well as those of you who have always wanted to write a book, but never have. Over the next couple of months you will see interviews from authors of books on writing. Today Barbara is here to share with us. She is also giving away a copy of her book!!! Yeah. Good luck everyone!

HOW TO BE A WRITER BUILDING YOUR CREATIVE SKILLS THROUGH PRACTICE AND PLAY, is Barbara Baigs latest book. Barbara, tell us how your book will help us become better writers.

Hello, Micole, and thank you very much for inviting me to your blog. My book, How To Be a Writer, will help aspiring writers in two main ways. First, unlike many writing books and workshops, which focus on the psychology of the writer, my book presents learning to write in a very down-to-earth and practical way. The book's premise is that writing is a certain kind of work, the work of communication, and that everyone can learn how to do this work. The book explains some of the basic skills people need in order to do this work. Then, second, the book shows how aspiring writers can learn their skills--through practice. The book removes the focus of becoming a writer from the realm of the psyche and puts it where I think it belongs, in the realm of learning.

Do writers ever stop practicing?

I think that writers never stop practicing, as long as they are always learning. There's a story I love (it's in the book) about the Russian writer, Leo Tolstoy. One day he was visiting a friend and picked up one of his own published books and started reading it. After a few minutes he exclaimed, "Oh, this is terrible! Now I see how I should have written this!" Even the writers we call "great" are always learning and developing their skills.

In your book, HOW TO BE A WRITER, you have many practice exercises, which one is your favorite? And why?

I particularly like the practices in the section on imagination, because they are so much fun to do!

Does writing ever get any easier?

Absolutely! If you see writing as work which requires certain skills, and you set yourself to learn those skills, then once you have developed them the work of writing becomes much less difficult, because you know what you are doing. The more you practice your skills, the more using them becomes second nature to you.

How do you help writers find their voice?

"Voice" is one of those words that gets thrown around a lot in writing workshops, and it's usually considered to come from the writer's psyche. I have a different view of what voice in writing is: it's skill in the use of language. To acquire that skill you must learn everything you can about how diction and syntax work in English, so that you can make choices about words and about how to put them together into clear and powerful sentences. Mastery of diction and syntax skills is the subject of my next book, which I'm working on now.

What is the most rewarding thing for you about teaching others about the craft of writing?

I believe that having skill in writing is tremendously empowering, whether people want to be professional writers or they need to write in school or at work. I have taught all kinds of writers, not just those who are aspiring creative writers--for example, I spent twenty years teaching graduate students at Harvard Divinity School, and I've also taught graduate students in management and other fields. I just love to help people acquire the power that writing skills can bring!

What is the best advice you can offer to aspiring authors?

Understand that becoming a writer is a lifelong journey in learning. Take the time to learn your skills before you attempt to break into the business of writing. Make a place in your life now for learning your skills: when you sit down to write, instead of spending all of your time trying to produce finished pieces, spend some of it in practice writing that will help you develop your skills. Professional athletes and musicians spend much more time practicing than they do in performance; that's why they get so good at what they do. Writers who spend time developing and perfecting their skills through practice will eventually be ready to compete in the professional business of writing--and they will stand out because they have become expert at what they do. You also offer workshops.

What kind of workshops do you teach and where do you teach them?

I teach workshops in the MFA Program in Creative Writing at Lesley University: one is on the art of the English sentence; the other is on story. I also give talks and workshops elsewhere: for example, I will be in Portland, Maine on March 5, 2011, for a conference on the business of writing hosted by the Maine Writers and Publishers Alliance. I'm always interested in giving workshops; I can be reached via my website.

Where can we find out more information about you, your books, and your workshops?

You can get more information at my website (which features free writing lessons): My book is widely available, in local bookstores and online.
Barbara, thank you so much for spending time with me on my blog.

It was a pleasure, Micole. Thanks for inviting me.

If you don’t have Barbara’s book, I suggest you take a trip to the book store, or skip the trip and head to the computer to order it. I have this book, have read it, and worked through most of the exercises. It is a wonderful learning tool. For those of you feeling stressed about your writing. Take a break for a couple of days and go through some of the writing practices in Barbara’s book. You won’t be sorry.

Thank you all for stopping in. Barbara was kind enough to give a copy of her book to me to give away. So comment away!!!! One lucky commenter will win the book!!!! I keep forgetting to ask that when you do comment for a contest to please leave your email address so I can get in touch with you if you are a winner. Also readers... don't forget about the contest Aquiring editor, Donna O'brien has for you. If you missed the post last week scroll down to find it or you can look on the side bar for all of the details! Check back with me tomorrow… right here for a four-part series on hero’s. ;-)

See you tomorrow.



Thursday, March 3, 2011

My writing...

When I started this blog, I promised to give you interviews with amazing authors… done. I promised to throw in some giveaways… done. And I also promised to share my characters, my writing and myself. I haven’t “done” so much of that. As a writer, some of us tend to feel self conscious about who were are, what we like, or how our writing will be judged. I know I don’t speak for all writers when I say that, but I happen to fall into that category more than I should at this point in my “writing” life.

With any form of art, there is a considerable amount of putting yourself out there, especially when you submit your work to contests, editors, and agents. You get my drift. When I started really focusing on my writing about ten years ago, I would sit at my computer writing and when anyone, be it my family (kids, especially my husband) or anyone else, came into the room I would quickly minimize my screen. I would cover any paper I might have notes on. Sometimes I would just completely shut the computer off and go onto something else. I didn’t want anyone peaking over my shoulder and laughing at what I had written.

Over the years I toughened up a bit and even read a couple of things to my husband. I let a few friends read what I had written. Most of the time I got rave reviews, but you never really know if those people just love you and want to make you feel good. (Thank you to all of my friends who loved me enough to take the time to read my work! It means the world to me!) So I started to venture out. I got online and looked for ways to connect with other writers.

Eventually I found the Writer’s Digest school on the internet and began taking some classes, mostly for the interaction, not because I thought I needed the help. ;-) Just kidding. I was in desperate need of help and the plus side was now I had an audience. People that I didn’t know, people that had never read any of my stuff, people that would give me a straight answer.

Things went well in the classes. I learned so much that I started to wonder if writing was really my cup of tea. I just liked to write to hear the stories in my head. I liked to write the way I wanted to and I started to realize that there was so much more to writing than just putting words on a page. Instead of walking away from what I loved, I dove into it deeper. I put together an online writing group with some amazing woman. We have never met in person, but met weekly on a one-hour chat. We talked about writing and we critiqued each other’s work. I met some amazing people in that group. And I grew up a lot. Or maybe I should say my writing grew-up.

I started to enter contest. I even won first place in the, Colorado Romance Writers Heart of the Rockies Contest. Now things were starting to happen. There was just one problem. I am such a perfectionist that I felt I had to re-write my work every time the wind blew a different direction, which kept me from typing THE END (approximately 50 times).

It took me over five years to finish my first manuscript, Morgan Ranch. Once it was finished, I went to, Belleview, Washington for the Emerald City Romance Writers Conference with a good writing friend of mine. There we both got the opportunity to meet with editors and agents. I had a meeting in the morning and pitched my book. The editor requested the first three chapters of my book and I was on cloud nine!!!

It took a couple of months for me to receive what would be my first rejection letter. It tore me apart, even though in my heart and in my head I knew I wasn’t ready to be published. It was that risk of putting myself out there and being told NO. It was a nice no, in fact it was a no that simply said your writing needs a little work and this manuscript just isn’t for us.

That is a good NO, but still a NO. My dreams of standing in the spotlight and paparazzi chasing me around town to snap my picture were gone. Ha ha as if that really happens to writers. Well I guess if your Nora Roberts or Stephanie Myers maybe, but not little ol’ me. ;-)

So what have I done for the last year after my rejection letter? Let’s see… my husband and I have bought our first home, packed up and moved in. My oldest child graduated from high school. And the other two children have kept my schedule so jam-packed that there are days I don’t know if I am coming or going. Am I still writing you ask? Yes, I am still writing. I started this year off by writing 1500 words every day which works out to be seven to ten pages a day. I did that routine five days a week (plus my day job and the normal everyday stuff) for a whole two weeks straight before I made myself terribly ill.

Good news was that I wrote 15,000 words in those two weeks. I proved to myself that I could stay on task with everything life threw at me and was still able to write those pages. And then I crashed and burned in weeks three, four, five… well I guess some would say I am still smoldering a little. I haven’t written in weeks.

I have still been trying to recuperate, more mentally than physically. As an active writer there is so much pressure on you. Pressures you put on yourself as well as pressure from others. How many pages or words did you write today? All of your peers ask that question. Don’t get me wrong… that’s good. They are doing their job as friends. And in all honesty they probably just want to see how your writing compares to what they’ve done or haven’t done that day as well. I am just one of those people that likes being able to say… “I made my word count for the day.” I do not like to answer with defeat. “I haven’t written a word in weeks.” I love to see the gleam in a fellow writers eyes when I tell them, I knocked out 2000 words today and have already done 10,000 for the week. There’s just something about that look of admiration that makes me sooooooo happy.

Unfortunately I haven’t seen that look in a couple of months, because it’s that same look that puts the pressure on. By me not anyone else. I hate to let people down, and even though these people are not waiting specifically for me. I haven’t held them up in anyway, they are waiting to hear just how many words I have accomplished. Not many since my illness now over a month ago.

I have been reading a lot and getting myself geared up for the next couple of scenes in the book I started at the beginning of the year. I guess what I have learned and maybe it’s something I have always known, is that I am not a speedy writer. I am speedy at a lot of other things and good at being speedy too. But writing speedy is not my thing. I am what you might call a Sunday driver. I am that annoying person that makes you cuss on Sunday when all you really want to do is be happy. ;-) I may come around and write my heart out for two weeks straight and walk away from my writing for a month, because that’s what I need to do. I just have to learn to deal with it and learn that, that is my style of writing. I may never be prolific. (Lord help me be prolific.) I will probably be that one book a year writer, ha ha, that may even be a stretch, if you were paying attention above, I said it took me five years to write Morgan Ranch. ;-) But I promise to be a little bit quicker than that.

Friends that have read Morgan Ranch, don’t give up on me. Be patient. You’ll be happy to know there is another book in the making called Donovan’s Journey. It just may take me a little longer than you or I want it to. Thank you all for your support over the years. It has meant the world to me.

So now I have caught you up on what’s been going on, I have shared a little bit of my, not so exciting life with you. I will try to keep you updated on my progress and maybe even some of the research I am doing for my book. I promise to stay in touch more often as long as you promise to keep reading.



Wednesday, March 2, 2011


Good morning friends… WOW two blogs in two days!!! Pretty exciting right??? Well I thought you all might be interested to hear about a contest that is going on right here on my blog. My good friend, and acquiring editor, Donna O’brien has agreed to do a contest. The entrances must be ROMANTIC TALES OF FANTASY, SCIENCE FITCION, OR PARANORMAL stories. One lucky entrance will win a read of their full manuscript by Donna. Two lucky writers will get to submit their first three chapters. You will find all of the details below. And if you lose track of this blog post you can always check the side bar of my blog. All of the important stuff will be there! ;-) I am so excited. All of you writers out there get your first and last lines ready! Make sure to share the contest details with all of your writers friends and tell them to stop by the blog and enter. Good luck!!!!

How important is that first sentence? Extremely! But so is your final sentence because it’s the last thing your readers take away from your novel. Your final chance to make a lasting impression, if you will. ;) So enter your First Line AND your Last Line for a chance to submit the full manuscript to Crescent Moon Press!

1. Submit the first and last sentence only of your manuscript to Crescent Moon Press Acquisitions Editor, Donna O’Brien via e-mail: by midnight on March 22, 2011.
2. Check the Micole Writes Romance blog @ on March 24, 2011, to see if you won.
3. There are three chances to win: 2nd and 3rd place will be able to submit their first three chapters and a synopsis and 1st place will be able to submit their full manuscript to Editor Donna O’Brien.
4. Crescent Moon Press publishes high quality fantasy, futuristic, and paranormal romantic fiction. See their website @ for more details.

If your full has that all important first line that will hook a reader and make them want to continue and a last line that will keep them coming back for more, then what are you waiting for? Submit them to Donna O’Brien, Crescent Moon Press Acquisitions Editor today!