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RobynDeHart
April 17th, 2011, 05:28 PM
Okay here’s my official bio:

A life-long lover of stories and adventure, it was either become a stuntwoman for the movies or live out those adventures from the safety of her PJ’s and computer. Award-winning author, Robyn DeHart chose the latter and couldn’t be happier for doing so. Known for her unique plotlines and authentic characters, Robyn is a favorite among readers and reviewers. Publishers' Weekly claims her writing to be "comical and sexy" while the Chicago Tribune dubs her "wonderfully entertaining." Robyn is a three-time RT Bookclub Reviewers' Choice award nominee, and her book Seduce Me won for the 2009 Best Historical Romantic Adventure. The same book also won the inaugural RomCon Reader’s Crown award. In March, Treasure Me, the much anticipated conclusion to her Legend Hunters trilogy hit stores. You can find Robyn on-line at www.RobynDeHart.com or www.JauntyQuills.com.

But here’s the stuff that really matters to those of you want to write too…

My education as a writer was a moment of sudden clarity. I call it a V-8 moment. (D’oh! I coulda had a V-8!) It took me 2 years to write my first book – first book completed not first book published. Granted, that wasn’t 2 years of consistent writing – but, hey, I was busy. Okay, so I wasn’t any busier then than now (in fact I’m arguably more busy now), but I was admittedly ignorant, unorganized, unfocused and frankly unmotivated. Writing wasn’t a top priority. And we’ll get to that later. But upon completion of that first book after 2 years of hard work, I sat down to read my masterpiece – which I was certain would be the next best seller and would make everyone ask, “Amanda Quick who?” – only to discover that while the characters and plot were indeed interesting, there was something missing. The romance.

So what do you have if your romance novel is lacking in romance? Well, technically you could have a variety of things – what I ended up with was episodic scenes that were connected by weak transitions and a relationship that didn’t make sense so that the happy ending was neither satisfying nor deserved. Lesson #1 that you can learn from my mistake: While layering is often necessary during revisions, you shouldn’t have to layer in the important stuff. Meaning if you’re writing a mystery – you shouldn’t have to layer in the mystery. Same goes for the romance. The romance is the main stuff – it’s the whole point – all the other elements should arise from and center around the romance.

My second V-8 moment came while attending a workshop at the RWA National Conference many moons ago; a workshop presented by Stephanie Bond on Self-Editing. Stephanie said something in this workshop that literally changed the way I have approached my writing career. Are you ready? Cause this is a biggie and it happens to be the foundation that this entire workshop is built on…

“Good writing is not accidental.” ~ Stephanie Bond

Write that down; tack it up on your monitor or bulletin board. It’s a small sentence that packs a lot of power. Think about it, this gives us the freedom to take control. No more are we going to sit aside and let our plot control us or our characters get us into corners. This freedom enables us to be specific and deliberate in our approach to writing and it will make a huge impact on your writing. We are able to write with confidence and know that by the time it is all said and done, we’ll have a finished book that is tight and cohesive with a memorable romance. It’s a slightly renegade way to think of writing since many writers like to perceive writing as more of a mythical experience – characters taking over and plots that come in dreams – and writing can be mythical and organic sometimes, but never for a moment believe that you are not the one in control. All of this should make more sense when we’re done with this workshop.

So that’s me in a nutshell, now onto the workshop itself. Before we get into the nitty-gritty, I’d like some information from you. At the end of this message is a survey we’d like each of you to fill out. This will give me some information about where you are you in your writing journey. I know that many of you are used to lurking in on-line situations and I certainly respect that. I hope that you will participate with each lesson, but ask that if you only do one, you do this one. The more information you can give me the better.

1. How long have you been writing?

2. How many manuscripts have you completed?

3. Are you published in book-length fiction? And if so with whom and for what type of book?

4. Are you primarily writing romance?

5. Are you familiar with Debra Dixon’s GMC: Goal Motivation and Conflict?

6. Do you consider yourself a panster or a plotter or somewhere in between?

Snowangelpipers
April 17th, 2011, 09:36 PM
1. How long have you been writing? I've been writing infrequently for about 15 years.

2. How many manuscripts have you completed? None but I have had a few poems published.

3. Are you published in book-length fiction? And if so with whom and for what type of book? Not published just looking to find a way to get my ideas/stories in better shape on paper.

4. Are you primarily writing romance? Yes I would prefer to write romance.

5. Are you familiar with Debra Dixon’s GMC: Goal Motivation and Conflict? No but I am going to go look it up!

6. Do you consider yourself a panster or a plotter or somewhere in between? I am a pantser.

~Snowangel

rachelanna25
April 17th, 2011, 10:39 PM
1. How long have you been writing? To become published about a year.

2. How many manuscripts have you completed? None but I am working on that

3. Are you published in book-length fiction? And if so with whom and for what type of book? Not published, I want to learn everything I can about the craft.

4. Are you primarily writing romance? Yes indeed.

5. Are you familiar with Debra Dixon’s GMC: Goal Motivation and Conflict? I have heard it mentioned by a few people

6. Do you consider yourself a panster or a plotter or somewhere in between? Somewhere in between

CharmedGirl
April 17th, 2011, 10:44 PM
1. How long have you been writing? Been trying for about two years.

2. How many manuscripts have you completed? Haven't got any completed yet, but a couple are halfway.

3. Are you published in book-length fiction? And if so with whom and for what type of book? Haven't got any work published, but hopefully in the future I will. *Fingers crossed*

4. Are you primarily writing romance? Yes, romance is my favourite genre so that's what I'd like to concentrate on writing. Whether it be romantic suspense or paranormal, doesn't matter.

5. Are you familiar with Debra Dixon’s GMC: Goal Motivation and Conflict? No, but I'll definitely be seeing what it's all about.

6. Do you consider yourself a panster or a plotter or somewhere in between? Somewhere in between, I like to have a general idea of what way I'd like to see my book go, so I draw a tentative map and make changes when I don't like something.

Mary Anne Landers
April 18th, 2011, 06:05 PM
Thank you for this seminar, Robyn.

To answer your questions:

1. How long have you been writing? Since I was a kid. And that was more decades ago than I care to admit to!

2. How many manuscripts have you completed? Novels, two. Short fiction, at least a hundred; but who's counting?

3. Are you published in book-length fiction? And if so with whom and for what type of book? No

4. Are you primarily writing romance? Yes. Right now I'm writing mostly short fantasy romances set in medieval England and Wales. These are largely inspired by folk tales and legends; I'm a big mythology and folklore freak. I've written a synopsis for, but not yet the manuscript of, a futuristic romance. I wish I could say it's a novel; but given the amount of plot, it might end up a novelette or novella.

I realize the market is geared to novels rather than short fiction. Still, as a reader I prefer the latter. I have plans to write a novel; already I have the outline---detailed, of course. It has a lot to do with romantic relationships, but they are WAY outside the conventions of genre romances.

5. Are you familiar with Debra Dixon’s GMC: Goal Motivation and Conflict? Yes

6. Do you consider yourself a pantser or a plotter or somewhere in between? Definitely a plotter! I try to plan every element of a story in advance. But even so, I always run into at least a few surprises along the way. My mid-course corrections typically involve details, not major changes.

Other relevant info: Many of my short fiction and nonfiction works have been published. Most of my fiction credits are in science fiction and fantasy, but some of my fantasy works are also romances, albeit in some cases they push or break the genre rules.

Also, I have a B.A. and an M.A. in English. So I know how to put a sentence together. Or at least, I have no excuse if I don't!

J Q Rose
April 19th, 2011, 12:40 PM
1. How long have you been writing?
Free lance for 15 years..fiction for 4 years.

2. How many manuscripts have you completed?
2
3. Are you published in book-length fiction? And if so with whom and for what type of book?
Yes, just released a mystery/light horror novella e-book by Muse It Up Publishing...Sunshine Boulevard (always promoting!!)
4. Are you primarily writing romance?
no
5. Are you familiar with Debra Dixon’s GMC: Goal Motivation and Conflict?
no
6. Do you consider yourself a panster or a plotter or somewhere in between?
More plotter than pantser, but not afraid to be inspired during the writing<!-- / message --><!-- sig -->

shannonleigh
April 19th, 2011, 03:09 PM
1. How long have you been writing?
I wrote several short stories with no intent to publish starting about 25 years ago. I started writing seriously, with intent to publish, about 11 years ago.

2. How many manuscripts have you completed?
Eleven

3. Are you published in book-length fiction? And if so with whom and for what type of book?
I have 8 erotica ebooks and one romance print/ebook with Amber Quill Press, I did have 1 print/ebook romance with DLSIJ Press but they have closed shop so that book is being revamped for resubmission elsewhere, and I have 1 short horror/dark fantasy ebook with Wild Child Publishing.

4. Are you primarily writing romance?
I primarily write paranormal romance, but have written scifi and contemporary romance as well.

5. Are you familiar with Debra Dixon’s GMC: Goal Motivation and Conflict?
No, have not heard of that before.

6. Do you consider yourself a panster or a plotter or somewhere in between?
More panster than plotter, but I have written out a basic outline when I've gotten stumped.

disonij
April 19th, 2011, 05:50 PM
1. How long have you been writing? All my life, but writing for publication only since 2007.

2. How many manuscripts have you completed? I have 2 completed manuscripts and about 3 wip.

3. Are you published in book-length fiction? And if so with whom and for what type of book? I have two e-books published - Prophecy of Vithan and Stone of Cruento with Ellora's Cave division called Blush.

4. Are you primarily writing romance? Yes, I call it adventurous romance since it is more action and adventure than sweet romance. It also leans heavily toward sci-fi, futuristic and paranormal.

5. Are you familiar with Debra Dixon’s GMC: Goal Motivation and Conflict? Not at this time.

6. Do you consider yourself a panster or a plotter or somewhere in between? I'm a plotter. I plot the story ad-nauseum then the story writes itself and doesn't follow the plot I just made.

Charlene Leatherman<!-- / message --><!-- sig -->
__________________

D.N. Lyons
April 19th, 2011, 06:22 PM
1. How long have you been writing?

Since I was 2-3 years old.

2. How many manuscripts have you completed?

I have five completed novels (unpublished), one of which has been rejected fifteen times. And as for WIPs, probably over a hundred by now.

3. Are you published in book-length fiction? And if so with whom and for what type of book?

No, not yet, but I'm hoping my mainstream fantasy novel will be picked up soon.

4. Are you primarily writing romance?

Well, here and there I write other things (one of my completed novels is horror, oh noes) but romance is prevalent, yes.

5. Are you familiar with Debra Dixon’s GMC: Goal Motivation and Conflict?

No...though I should find out what it is.

6. Do you consider yourself a panTSer or a plotter or somewhere in between?

I consider myself in between, because sometimes I just let the story take me where it will. :)

D.N. Lyons

Janice Seagraves
April 20th, 2011, 03:40 PM
1. How long have you been writing?

Since I was twenty, but I've writing for publication for twelve years.

2. How many manuscripts have you completed?

Roughly 20.

3. Are you published in book-length fiction? And if so with whom and for what type of book?

My first book, Windswept Shores, is a contemporary erotic romance. It's 55,000 words length, its release date was last year, 7/3/11, through Pink Petal Books.

4. Are you primarily writing romance?

Yes.

5. Are you familiar with Debra Dixon’s GMC: Goal Motivation and Conflict?

No

6. Do you consider yourself a panster or a plotter or somewhere in between?

I'm a panster.

RobynDeHart
April 20th, 2011, 03:43 PM
So we're spread across a wide range of experiences, that's always good. Thanks for participating!

Joyce Watson
April 20th, 2011, 04:09 PM
1. Since I retired in 1991
2. No manuscripts completed, but several started.
3. Not yet published in book length.
4. Yes.
5. No
6. In between