01 December 2006

So Much Potential

This morning I awoke to blank pages, both on Word and this blog. Where to start? What to write? Allow me to explain.

First, with regard to this blog, I started it on a whim with scarcely a thought as to what to contribute -- or who else would help me out! In mere days, four contributing authors have signed on, with two in the wings awaiting Blogger's gentle benevolence.

Yesterday, I posted a review of Marjorie's novel The Lighthorseman. However, after consulting with other contributors, we decided that this is not the place to assess each other's work. We'll leave that to the critics! Instead, we're going to address topics with regard to the process of writing, pitching, publishing, and promoting historical romances that fall outside of the mainstream. I am especially curious to discover what attracts authors and readers to their particular historic specialty. So have at it, ladies!

Second, I started by new manuscript today. Yikes! I only expect 500 words per day from myself throughout December. The holidays and our impending three-week trip to visit my husband's family in England will hamper any more serious progress. However, after a two month break during which edits and research consumed my time, the actual process of writing feels foreign.

My first novel, Salzburg Serenade, set in 1804, is slowly grinding through the process of finding a publisher. Almost anyone who reads historical romances knows that the Regency and Napoleonic Eras as hot topics today, so my MS fits right into that period. But Salzburg is the key. I'll talk a little about my research on another day, particularly the profound cultural differences I discovered and wove into my story.

So what do I have lined up for my brand new, intimidating, blank page, yikes-inducing WIP? I'll be traveling back in time to the year 1200--to England. While writing Serenade, I had every intention of setting my next book in the early 20th century US, but my muse dictated otherwise. My husband is English, but I never had an intention of setting a novel in the country of his birth. How ordinary! But inspiration dawns in strange ways.

This has meant all new research. For my history master's degree, I wrote about Jesse James and the confluence of myth and reality. Not Salzburg. Not medieval England. And certainly not the history of chemistry! Ah-ha, there's the key...the little bit of unusual. But I'm keeping the details under wraps!

So... what are you working on this morning?