It’s been a long time since I blogged here, and that’s not only because I’ve been busy, but because I’ve been working on some big changes, and I wanted to be sure of them before making any sort of announcement.
I started this year thinking, not for the first time, about the sort of stories I most want to write – and whether I’m writing just for the fun and satisfaction of it, or whether Ialso hope, like most writers, to be able to make it financially worth my while.
We’re all aware that lesbian fiction is a niche genre, and that within that genre there are even more niches to write in – whether romance, mystery, and so on. Lesbian romance can sell very well within our genre, but my preferred genre to write in – horror – does not. Absolutely, it does not. Nor, really, would I expect it too, considering the lesbian reading community is so small.
Unfortunately, this fact leaves me in a difficult position. If I want to make significant money writing lesbian fiction, I must write romance (and the terrific sales of my romance novel Don’t Go There only served to prove this). If I want any hope of making significant money writing horror fiction, I must go mainstream.
I want to continue to write what I love best – my horror/supernatural suspense books. And I don’t want to have to subsidise them by writing romance. I do have a couple more romantic stories I’d like to write sometime, but I don’t want to have to consider them my bread and butter. I’d prefer they remained strictly optional.
So, what does this all mean? Along with setting up a brand new website and blog, I’m also two thirds of the way through an ‘alien invasion’ horror story. While it has a lesbian character, she’s only one of several main characters, and while the story is enriched by her sexuality, it is not bound up in it. It is a book intended for a mainstream audience – though I would like to hope that there are several of you readers who would pick it up anyway, because you simply like my writing.
I will also be putting out regular, free short stories on my new site, the first of which will hopefully go live tomorrow. I have a mailing list you might like to join, to hear about new releases and special deals, and you can sign up over at the new website.
It’s been an incredibly busy year so far, and I haven’t done half of what I hoped so far. My website Sapphica Books, for indie published lesbian literature is up and running, and if you have books there I haven’t listed yet, and you’d like to have the extra publicity and availability that Sapphica Books brings, then don’t hesitate to contact me. I’m building the list all the time, and have some great things planned for later in the year.
I’m also still writing blurbs on a professional level, so if your blurb’s a bit sad and needs tarting up, pop on over to The Blurbist, and find out about all that good stuff.
I do hope to see you all over at my new site, where you can find free stories and keep up to date with new and forthcoming work. I will still be writing lesbian fiction – for those of you who only read that – but it will be only occasional. Having said that though, I can pretty much guarantee that my mainstream stories will also feature lesbian and gay characters, alongside the straight ones.
I’m exhausted. After uploading the file for Don’t Go There, I noticed – finally – that the title on the cover had no apostrophe where it needed one. Needless to say, I pulled that one down, and redid the cover without the grammatical error. I can’t believe I didn’t notice it! That cover’s been all around the place for the last week, and no one else mentioned the error either. I guess we really do see what we think ought to be there. Which certainly is the case with typos. I found a few more of those while I was glancing through the book file, and fixed them while I was at it. With a bit of luck, I’ve got them all now, or most of them, I hope. I’m never surprised when I see a few typos in a book, because they’re damned hard to get rid of. Having said that, however, I’ve been as thorough as possible with this book, so I hope it’s as clean a read as possible now.
Because – yes, it’s available for download right now. If I weren’t so tired (I’ve also been working on the cover for the upcoming print version) I’d be doing a big ole happy dance. I love all the stories I’ve published, but it’s always a big thrill for me when I put out a full length novel. This one’s not an especially long read – I think my Kindle told me it was a four hour job, but it’s at least twice the length of the Reality Dawn books.
Whatever – I’m a happy camper, and I hope you enjoy reading the story as much as I did writing it. I already have my next book planned, and I’m looking forward to starting it now that the hustle and bustle of publication is almost behind me. But in the meantime – go and download ‘Don’t Go There’ because you know you really do want to go there…
It’s done. I wrote it last month, after asking quite a few of you to educate me about romance writing. I’m not quite sure how well I followed the conventions (though I did get the ones you considered most important in there), I ended up just going with instinct, and telling a story about two women and their bourgeoning relationship. And thus its best fit for categorisation is as a romantic novel. I’m a bit nervous about it, to tell the truth – I’ve written many stories with romantic storylines, but this is the first where the romantic relationship is the raison d’être for the action within the story.
And you know what? I loved writing it. I found it a lot more fulfilling than I expected to, and it’s made me want to write more of this type of story. I guess I’m getting sentimental in my old age. Though I don’t think sentimentality has any place in a story – but sentiment, yes, for sure.
Anyway, enough of my waffling, let’s get to the heart of the matter, shall we? It’s called Don’t Go There, and you’ll be able to download a digital edition on 4th December. I’m putting this one out in print as well, for those of you who prefer that format, but that may take up to a week longer. Don’t worry, I’ll remind you when it’s out.
So, here’s the blurb, and I do hope it piques your interest, because I really look forward to hearing what you think about this new direction of mine.
Don`t Go There
Teresa probably wouldn’t admit she’s in hiding from her own life; she simply feels that being back in her tiny home town will keep her out of trouble. Spending her days painting, she’s turned her back on more than her past, she’s let go of all her hopes and dreams for the future and while this new life is a struggle, she’s determined not to let anyone tempt her into changing course.
But Scarcity wants to know her – Teresa’s the only other lesbian in this tiny dot on the map after all, and Scarcity’s position in life feels increasingly precarious. She’s coming of age and coming out into a world that seems more hostile than welcoming. Things at home aren’t all they could be and the more experienced Teresa might be able to offer her a helping hand, and a safe place in which Scarcity can truly be herself.
Teresa’s frightened of her though. The girl stirs up too many feelings in her, and she doesn’t want to be reminded of needs that are going unfulfilled. It would be much easier if Scarcity would just leave her alone – on her own, Teresa can’t repeat her worst mistakes. Unfortunately, what she’s doing can barely be called living, and when Scarcity insists on being part of her life, Teresa may have to re-evaluate everything she thinks she knows about herself and the choices she’s made .
Available 4th December, but I`ll be back with links on the day.