Phone call from Hawaii, ‘What are you doing today, Jane?’
Phone call a day later from friend. ‘Jane, what are you doing?’
Phone call from Mom. ‘How are things?’
‘Fine. Just writing.’
Phone call from mother of son’s friend to organize playdate. ‘You okay, Jane?’
‘Oh yeah, I’m just at my desk. Writing.’
That’s all I’m doing. Writing and writing and writing and you’d think by now I’d have a book. You’d think I’d be almost done. You’d think that after a month of hardcore serious writing, I’d have half a book. You’d be wrong. Everytime I finish two chapters I end up backtracking and deleting, editing, rewriting three, four or five. I’m back in that weird world of 2+3= negative 134. How that happens is beyond me and if I weren’t so frickin stubborn I’d give up but there’s no way a romance novel is going to level me.
Although they do come close.
The truth is, Harlequin romances are hard to write, very hard to write. They’re harder in many ways than the women’s fiction I do for 5 Spot. I don’t have the room to wander, wonder, or just write in a Harlequin Presents. The readers won’t have it. They know what a Presents should and shouldn’t be and they’re not very forgiving if you let them down. And so those reader expectations haunt me now as I write and rewrite and write some more.
It’s not that those reader expectations are bad, it’s just that they’re high and once you set the bar high, I go for it.
So if you’re trying to call me and I’m not answering the phone its because book has to get finished in the next four days or so and my editor really needs it and I really need to nail this so I can leave my house.
I’ve got cabin fever. Bad. But worse than cabin fever is the need to wrestle this book into something readers will love.