Friday, May 29, 2009

Ch-ch-ch-changes

What a time of year! Not only did Fire Me come out this month, but two of my kids "came out" of college. That's right, two kids graduated at the same time. They're not twins. One entered college a year early and the other took five years to finish a challenging major (electrical engineering coupled with Air Force ROTC training).

It's been a big month of changes in this household as these two chicks of mine launch themselves into the world (or try to -- my daughter is looking for a job in this bleak economy!).

So it's only natural that my thoughts focus on changes and transitions, and the curves in the road that make it difficult to see what's up ahead.

All writers have to grapple with unpredictability, though. This business is filled with tales of authors whose multiple-book careers trickle to a stop when the market shifts or publishers shutter their doors. I know several authors who are in the process of rethinking their writing direction because changes in the industry have left them without contracts--temporarily, we all hope.

As for me, when I first started writing fiction, I thought I'd be writing serious stuff. You know -- Lit.Rah.Chure. But something inside me couldn't resist a chuckle and here I am in romantic comedy/humorous women's fiction. In fact, I have only one "serious" published book to my name--a historical YA (written as Libby Sternberg) that was a joy to write, even if the subject matter was more shadow than light.

I've dabbled in more serious fare and do yearn to see it published. And I'll keep trying. Scratch any comic and you'll probably find an actor longing to play the Brooding Prince. Hey, I can brood with the best of them! :-)

So the question I'm curious about is: if you could change something about your writing/reading life, what would it be -- do you long to write in a different genre, yearn to read other kinds of books but never find the time....or interest? What holds you back from making the changes you'd like to make?

14 comments:

  1. I'd like to write bigger books someday. Books with an ensemble cast of characters and in which I can allow my imagination more latitude.

    Of course, I write so slowly, I don't know how realistic such a dream is--unless I had a public who would be happy with one book every five years!

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  2. Bigger books -- sounds cool, Mary Margaret. Maybe the way to get around the time issue is to start a series! You could cover the various characters in each new book.

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  3. I write in two genres--contemporary and romantic suspense. The suspense make me work a LOT harder, that's for sure! I'm also whipping a couple of big contemporaries into shape for submission and contemplating a fun series about brothers.

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  4. I have lots of contemporary romances already written. I just wish there was a market for them!

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  5. Right now, I'm perfectly happy where I am with my writing career. That could be because I'm now finishing my 21st book.

    Amelia

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  6. I've wanted to write paranormal since the 80s, started then and doing what I want now. I wrote humorous romance and romantic suspense back then and both show up in my books now.

    And if Jeremy Northam would show up at my door I'd be a happy camper.

    Linda

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  7. As a reader, I think I want to start reading more non-fiction... but I've yet to find anything other than biogrpahies that hold my interest!

    Congrats to your kids, Libby--you must be very proud :)

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  8. I find myself drawn to reading nonfiction between reading novels. I love good biographies! Here are a couple non biography nonfic books I really liked: THE WORST HARD TIME, about the Dust Bowl, and 1865, about, well, that momentous year and all the things that could have turned out differently (for the worse).

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  9. I just like to find more hours in the day to read what I love the most. I'd also like to find enough time to write. Do anyone else feel like their exhausted from the effort?

    Dottie :)

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  10. I'm in the process of changing and quite enjoying it, so I'll probably just keep reading all the genres that I like and working on this and that when I get time. Maybe I'll try something romantic one day.

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  11. By the way, I saw Fire Me prominently displayed at our local Borders at the weekend. Congratulations!

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  12. Off Topic here - Do you mind my asking which college your older son went to? My HS junior son is looking at that exact same set up. Electrical Engineering and AF ROTC.

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  13. My son went to Penn State and loved it. Feel free to contact me at Libby_Malin@hotmail.com -- I'd be happy to answer questions!

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  14. I'm like you with major changes--my son just graduated with a computer science degree and will be a navigator in the AF, and my daughter moved out to finish her last two years at college. At least she won't be looking for a job for a couple of years. :)

    Good luck to both of your children and with all your writing and publications!!! I found I can't write totally dark, has to have humor! Oh, and yes, paranormal. Love it!

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