Thursday, July 14, 2016

Guest Post by Susie Warren, author of The Forgotten Heiress PLUS #Giveaway

How do I stay inspired while spending so much time alone? 
By Susie Warren

Keep reading. There is so much to learn about the craft of writing and it is crucial to study how other writer’s tell a great story. When reading, I pay attention to the elements of the novel that draw me in and will make note of where my attention wanders.
Spend time on craft. Even after writing for years, I can become re-energized by how someone else thinks about or approaches a topic. For example, I can across a writer who wrote a blog post about productivity. She had three useful strategies, when combined together they enable writers to consistently write 1,000 words an hour or 8,000 words a day. I tried her technique and it worked beautifully. If you find me on twitter, I re-tweeted the link to her blog.
Learn how to plot. Most writers have read either The Writers Journey: Mythic Structure for Writers by Christopher Vogler or The Hero with a Thousand Faces by Joseph Campbell. Vogler’s book is based on Campbell’s earlier work and it is considered more accessible. These books do an amazing job of explaining the structure of a story.
Spend time considering the emotional life of the characters. For me, the hardest part of being a romance writer is the willingness to explore the emotional core of the story. I get lost in intriguing plots and the structure of the story and have to push myself to fully investigate the emotional life of the characters. But the reader ultimately is looking for the emotional impact in the story so the setting and plot details in a well told romance will be somewhat invisible.
Writing is rewriting. I find the most challenging aspect of writing to be printing out the first draft and knowing what to do next. Once I read the entire manuscript and make notes then I begin to know what to do in terms of changes and revisions. But to take a story from good to great, you will need to learn how to tighten and polish. This can only be accomplished by rewriting each scene several times.
Seek feedback. I enjoy being part of a critique group. The direct feedback is helpful in understanding aspects of writing that may have eluded me. For example, I was always showing and telling and it took several sessions for the group to get me to understand the issue. In a group situation, when everyone has read the same pages, an interesting discussion can result. I think it can move a writer closer to understanding the elements of their own writing.
Learn how all the pieces fit together. Writing a great book is just the beginning. There is a tremendous amount that you will need to know about branding, marketing, publishing, contracts, publicity etc… Most successful authors will cultivate relationships with other authors and industry professionals to get first- hand knowledge about the market, to understand what is changing and how to best position themselves. There is no right answer for every author but instead you will need to weigh your goals and strengths against what is happening in the publishing world.
Attend Writing Conferences. I highly recommend attending writing conferences and workshops to learn new skills and network with other writers and industry professionals. I try to reach out of my comfort zone and attend a few workshops that I’m not naturally drawn to instead of just sticking with my favorite topics. As a romance author, I attend RWA conferences but there are many local and regional writing workshops.

The Forgotten Heiress
Susie Warren

(The Bolles Dynasty, #1)
Publication date: June 28th 2014
Genres: Adult, Contemporary, Romance

Fionn Lynch is a self-made Irish billionaire, sought after for his striking appearance, razor sharp intellect and ability to thrive in volatile markets. When his mentor dies unexpectedly in a tragic accident, leaving his business and family in turmoil, Fionn steps in and takes charge. He seeks out estranged heiress Olivia Grey to help squash the unpleasant rumors. When the details of her secret past are leaked to the media, she must decide if she is willing to trust Fionn and allow herself to be drawn into her estranged family. Sparks fly between the two when he persuades her to accompany him to New York to salvage her family’s crumbling financial empire.
A shy clothing designer who was raised by a guardian in an attempt to save the Bolles family from shame, Olivia proves that she has the strength and determination to survive. She has to fight her way through relentless media scrutiny, memories of her father, and the expectations of the elite New York social world–all while trying to keep Fionn at arm’s length, for she refuses to settle for an emotionally distant relationship ever again.
It proves impossible to deny her attraction to Fionn. Is their growing bond enough to overcome all the obstacles thrown into their path?

***The Forgotten Heiress is the first book in a six book series. Each book is a stand-alone category romance and tells the story of one of the Bolles family members.

Author Bio:
Amazon bestselling author Susie Warren writes heartfelt and passionate contemporary romance with tempting, larger than life heroes and smart, sassy heroines. The stories are set in elite and glamorous worlds and appeal to readers looking for an escape from everyday life by offering jet-set lifestyles and sophisticated plots. Her category length series, The Rosa Legacy and the Bolles Dynasty, feature remarkable, stylish women and the sinfully tempting heroes that challenge them to reveal their secrets, their strengths and their deepest emotions. Susie lives in New York with her inventor husband and their three lively teenagers.
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