Just thinking out loud for a minute...
I'm stepping out on a limb with this post. I hope I won't hear the branch crack, much less, feel the earth thud beneath me. Big breath. Here I go.
When I started my writing career, my main purpose was to fill a need. I love reading. I always have. The problem was, I had more and more difficulty finding a story I enjoyed spending time with. Yes, I know, genres and tastes change. I'm okay with that. But, this information didn't give me reason to invest my time and money in a variety of novels that left me feeling empty. When I read a book, I want to be transported into the characters lives and more importantly, I want to enjoy my time spent with them. Since I was walking away from bookstores disappointed, I decided to create my own characters and stories.
When friends and family discovered my secret, they asked if they could read what I'd written. Talk about nerve-wracking. I'd written my stories because I enjoyed them. That didn't mean other people would find them interesting. But, they did! They actually looked forward to each book's release, and my sister, who was and is my toughest critic, would salivate when I shared thoughts and ideas for upcoming plots. Seriously, she would sit on the edge of her seat, her mouth hanging open and her pupils dialating. It was kinda cool to watch. :)
The big step was next. Publishing. Yikes. Talk about needing a rhino-infused skin. This process was painful. I see why work of good authors goes undiscovered. But, I'll not go into that now. My body's starting to draw up into a ball and I'm wanting a warm blanket just from the memories. However, unless I intended for a small group of individuals to be the only people to share in the trials and terrors of my characters, I would have to self publish. What a great idea. There wouldn't be any rejection there, right? That depends on how you look at it.
I have become friends with many self publishing authors. We met when we were all starting out and they have become very well known and successful in their own right. You noticed, I said they became well known. Don't get me wong, I'm happy for them, truly, I am. But, since green is not my best color, that's all I'll say about that. What I've often wondered about my friends' successes is how did they find their target readers?
That leads me back to my opening paragraph. I like reading books where the charaters' emotional bond happens early in the story. I don't enjoy the love-hate element. If you do, that's fine. I also like for there to be more to the story than falling in love. I have always loved mysteries. So, for my characters to fall in love, whether they know it or not, and have a mystery to solve along the way, now we're talking.
Let's recap my wish list for a good read:
The hero and heroine love each other from the beginning of the book.
A good mystery will keep the plot moving forward. (remember, this is my wishlist)
Oh, yeah, I adore great sub-characters. Love them!
And top it all of with a happy ending, of course.
Did the branch break? I'm afraid to look. But that eerie nursery rhyme kept repeating in my head as I typed. Seriously, have you considered the words to that lullaby? What child could fall asleep hearing those words as they drifted off? It's a good thing the tune is soothing.
So much for my digression...rein it in, Carol. Where were we? Oh, yes. Finding my audience.
If you agree with my wishlist, or at least have a slight interest, I hope you'll read my books. If you like them, I'd love to hear from you. It is because of one email in particular that I'm in the middle of Beyond Hope. I was ready to give up writing when a reader said, when will Hope's story be released? This was all the motivation I needed to keep going. I'll make you a promise, if you'll keep reading, I'll keep writing. Do we have a deal? Let me know.