Choosing a story

ReadOldLadyGIF

Or is it more a matter of letting the story choose you?

Pat again. The wenchly August schedule is chaotic as everyone but me runs out to play. (I prefer Christmas in warmer climes.) So I’m holding fort today until a wench or two journeys back from distant climes or some of our guests stop by.  Hot August days require lazy, cool daiquiri discussions, don’t you think?

So I’m lounging on my patio chair, sipping a cool drink, and recalling a topic much discussed on reader as well as writer lists—Where do you get your stories?F-DrinksPatioMA13672069-0011

Now we all know there are as many stories in the world as there are blades of grass and grains of sand. Heaven only knows, authors have enough people walk up to them at book signings declaring we need to write their stories to know everyone has at least one tale to tell. The tough question here is how do we choose which one to tell? All I have to do is stare blankly at a proposal that’s giving me fits for bits of irrelevant dialogue to pop like weeds out of fertile soil–procrastination is an excellent spontaneous story generator. But really, do I want to write an entire book based upon a conversation that arrives in my head while it’s empty? I’ve spun this particular weed into a blog, but a book requires months and months of cohabitation, possibly years. How do we turn that crazy internal dialogue into characters worthy of all that time?

 I realize the cliché about writing the book of your heart is scarcely relevant to today’s market, but if we dig around, we’ll find there’s a kernel of truth in it. If we are to spend months of our lives with a story, we have to find characters and tales about which we are passionate, the ones that well up inside us and compel us to put pen to paper, the ones that won’t leave us alone until we’ve woven them. If it happens that story doesn’t fall within the parameters of today’s publishing market, we can choose to write it anyway, knowing full well it will end up filed under the bed, never to be seen again unless we become a multi-bestseller who could sell peanut butter on paper. 

 But if we really want our brilliant idea to be read by others, we have to find a way to shape and fit it into today’s market. If we can distill the elements about which we’re truly passionate, it’s often Books possible to find a more marketable vehicle to insert them into. That’s where true genius and creativity lies—meshing passion and market. Unless, of course, you're a marketing as well as a creative genius and your stories automatically fit the current trends.

This doesn’t apply just to books, mind you. Think about television. Once upon a time, situation Happydays Lucille ball comedies ruled the airwaves. The audience demanded no more than witty lines and wacky characters. Then we grew a little more sophisticated and wanted strong storylines, but the kid characters grew up or the  protagonists fell in love and the shows changed and withered.  Like book publishers, TV producers had to keep spending more and more on shows people watched less and less—until they learned that the audience craved the familiar, with twists, which is where both TV and books seem to stand now.

Series books offer familiar characters in familiar worlds. Soap operas last for Mystic warrior decades on the same premise. So TV began producing prime time family dramas, building worlds audiences wanted to spend time in. And when that worked, they created police and hospital dramas, where they could have the same setting and same characters every week.  If a character grows old or annoying, he’s pushed out and another is introduced. Changing one character or storyline doesn’t disturb the expensive world the show has developed. Currently, contemporary genre fiction is aimed that same direction, with Nora’s trilogies and Macomber’s knitting circles and similar “community” romances and mysteries and even urban fantasy.  

Like every trend, I suppose the series will end eventually. Our attention spans have never been great, and audiences keep demanding more and more be crammed into less and less until we’re all jumping the shark and something new comes along.  That’s what happened back in the nineties when historical fiction built into time travel and paranormal and the whole balloon got too big and blew up.

On this lazy afternoon with nothing better to dream about, I like to wonder what will happen when readers tire of having to buy three or six books to live in our worlds for a while. If I have to take the story elements about which I’m passionate and install them into a marketable vehicle, what will that Barbie and ken vehicle look like? Barbie and Ken driving off into the sunset in a Humvee?  Luke Skywalker and Gidget surfing into Fiji to save the turtles? E-books with pictures? Novellas with videos?

As the world turns, where do you see books (or TV or film) going next? Or better yet, where would you LIKE it to go?

65 thoughts on “Choosing a story”

  1. Well, as to books, I see the trend to more and more sex continuing unabated.
    But I also see a countertrend in the popularity of inspirationals and YA. Not just Christians and teenagers are reading these sweet genres. Adults who don’t want pages and pages and pages, etc. of sex are also migrating to them. I think there is a place for adult books without reams of sex. People will get tired of skipping over the sex when half the book is sex.
    I also see books getting shorter, a trend I deplore. Maybe the short books are a way to keep a series going, besides saving on paper and warehousing costs.
    And because I have 2 e-books, I would like to see epubs take off. Writing an e-book is just as much effort as writing a paper book, and I would like to make more than a few pennies. **grins**

    Reply
  2. Well, as to books, I see the trend to more and more sex continuing unabated.
    But I also see a countertrend in the popularity of inspirationals and YA. Not just Christians and teenagers are reading these sweet genres. Adults who don’t want pages and pages and pages, etc. of sex are also migrating to them. I think there is a place for adult books without reams of sex. People will get tired of skipping over the sex when half the book is sex.
    I also see books getting shorter, a trend I deplore. Maybe the short books are a way to keep a series going, besides saving on paper and warehousing costs.
    And because I have 2 e-books, I would like to see epubs take off. Writing an e-book is just as much effort as writing a paper book, and I would like to make more than a few pennies. **grins**

    Reply
  3. Well, as to books, I see the trend to more and more sex continuing unabated.
    But I also see a countertrend in the popularity of inspirationals and YA. Not just Christians and teenagers are reading these sweet genres. Adults who don’t want pages and pages and pages, etc. of sex are also migrating to them. I think there is a place for adult books without reams of sex. People will get tired of skipping over the sex when half the book is sex.
    I also see books getting shorter, a trend I deplore. Maybe the short books are a way to keep a series going, besides saving on paper and warehousing costs.
    And because I have 2 e-books, I would like to see epubs take off. Writing an e-book is just as much effort as writing a paper book, and I would like to make more than a few pennies. **grins**

    Reply
  4. Well, as to books, I see the trend to more and more sex continuing unabated.
    But I also see a countertrend in the popularity of inspirationals and YA. Not just Christians and teenagers are reading these sweet genres. Adults who don’t want pages and pages and pages, etc. of sex are also migrating to them. I think there is a place for adult books without reams of sex. People will get tired of skipping over the sex when half the book is sex.
    I also see books getting shorter, a trend I deplore. Maybe the short books are a way to keep a series going, besides saving on paper and warehousing costs.
    And because I have 2 e-books, I would like to see epubs take off. Writing an e-book is just as much effort as writing a paper book, and I would like to make more than a few pennies. **grins**

    Reply
  5. Well, as to books, I see the trend to more and more sex continuing unabated.
    But I also see a countertrend in the popularity of inspirationals and YA. Not just Christians and teenagers are reading these sweet genres. Adults who don’t want pages and pages and pages, etc. of sex are also migrating to them. I think there is a place for adult books without reams of sex. People will get tired of skipping over the sex when half the book is sex.
    I also see books getting shorter, a trend I deplore. Maybe the short books are a way to keep a series going, besides saving on paper and warehousing costs.
    And because I have 2 e-books, I would like to see epubs take off. Writing an e-book is just as much effort as writing a paper book, and I would like to make more than a few pennies. **grins**

    Reply
  6. LOL, Liz! You made me laugh on a gray morning.
    Linda, I know e-books will take off as soon as e-readers come down in price. And I’m thinking the sexy books are forming a genre of their own as it is, and that regular romance is pulling in the other direction. Of course, I dream a lot, too.

    Reply
  7. LOL, Liz! You made me laugh on a gray morning.
    Linda, I know e-books will take off as soon as e-readers come down in price. And I’m thinking the sexy books are forming a genre of their own as it is, and that regular romance is pulling in the other direction. Of course, I dream a lot, too.

    Reply
  8. LOL, Liz! You made me laugh on a gray morning.
    Linda, I know e-books will take off as soon as e-readers come down in price. And I’m thinking the sexy books are forming a genre of their own as it is, and that regular romance is pulling in the other direction. Of course, I dream a lot, too.

    Reply
  9. LOL, Liz! You made me laugh on a gray morning.
    Linda, I know e-books will take off as soon as e-readers come down in price. And I’m thinking the sexy books are forming a genre of their own as it is, and that regular romance is pulling in the other direction. Of course, I dream a lot, too.

    Reply
  10. LOL, Liz! You made me laugh on a gray morning.
    Linda, I know e-books will take off as soon as e-readers come down in price. And I’m thinking the sexy books are forming a genre of their own as it is, and that regular romance is pulling in the other direction. Of course, I dream a lot, too.

    Reply
  11. E-books – I’m doing the SBTB Test Drive and I don’t think price is the real barrier – someone has to win the format war for e-books to really take off, I think. Right now, you can buy any dvd player and play a dvd, any record and put it on your i-pod. The DRM issues with the e-market are what’s really holding it back, I think.
    As far as the future – I’d like to see genre splintering, but I don’t know. Someone was talking this week about how romance reflects and is an answer to the times it’s written in. So, (imo) we went 70’s power & sexism issues / 80’s equality demands / 90’s erotica response to AIDS repression, complete with blood exchanges, 00’s aren’t really defined yet. With a liberal gov’t maybe we’re going to see a spike in ‘traditional’ relationship books – the rise of the YA market sort of suggests that.
    I just want good books. If the wenches and wench worthy (Duran, Thomas, James, etc) are leading the way, I’d be a happy girl.

    Reply
  12. E-books – I’m doing the SBTB Test Drive and I don’t think price is the real barrier – someone has to win the format war for e-books to really take off, I think. Right now, you can buy any dvd player and play a dvd, any record and put it on your i-pod. The DRM issues with the e-market are what’s really holding it back, I think.
    As far as the future – I’d like to see genre splintering, but I don’t know. Someone was talking this week about how romance reflects and is an answer to the times it’s written in. So, (imo) we went 70’s power & sexism issues / 80’s equality demands / 90’s erotica response to AIDS repression, complete with blood exchanges, 00’s aren’t really defined yet. With a liberal gov’t maybe we’re going to see a spike in ‘traditional’ relationship books – the rise of the YA market sort of suggests that.
    I just want good books. If the wenches and wench worthy (Duran, Thomas, James, etc) are leading the way, I’d be a happy girl.

    Reply
  13. E-books – I’m doing the SBTB Test Drive and I don’t think price is the real barrier – someone has to win the format war for e-books to really take off, I think. Right now, you can buy any dvd player and play a dvd, any record and put it on your i-pod. The DRM issues with the e-market are what’s really holding it back, I think.
    As far as the future – I’d like to see genre splintering, but I don’t know. Someone was talking this week about how romance reflects and is an answer to the times it’s written in. So, (imo) we went 70’s power & sexism issues / 80’s equality demands / 90’s erotica response to AIDS repression, complete with blood exchanges, 00’s aren’t really defined yet. With a liberal gov’t maybe we’re going to see a spike in ‘traditional’ relationship books – the rise of the YA market sort of suggests that.
    I just want good books. If the wenches and wench worthy (Duran, Thomas, James, etc) are leading the way, I’d be a happy girl.

    Reply
  14. E-books – I’m doing the SBTB Test Drive and I don’t think price is the real barrier – someone has to win the format war for e-books to really take off, I think. Right now, you can buy any dvd player and play a dvd, any record and put it on your i-pod. The DRM issues with the e-market are what’s really holding it back, I think.
    As far as the future – I’d like to see genre splintering, but I don’t know. Someone was talking this week about how romance reflects and is an answer to the times it’s written in. So, (imo) we went 70’s power & sexism issues / 80’s equality demands / 90’s erotica response to AIDS repression, complete with blood exchanges, 00’s aren’t really defined yet. With a liberal gov’t maybe we’re going to see a spike in ‘traditional’ relationship books – the rise of the YA market sort of suggests that.
    I just want good books. If the wenches and wench worthy (Duran, Thomas, James, etc) are leading the way, I’d be a happy girl.

    Reply
  15. E-books – I’m doing the SBTB Test Drive and I don’t think price is the real barrier – someone has to win the format war for e-books to really take off, I think. Right now, you can buy any dvd player and play a dvd, any record and put it on your i-pod. The DRM issues with the e-market are what’s really holding it back, I think.
    As far as the future – I’d like to see genre splintering, but I don’t know. Someone was talking this week about how romance reflects and is an answer to the times it’s written in. So, (imo) we went 70’s power & sexism issues / 80’s equality demands / 90’s erotica response to AIDS repression, complete with blood exchanges, 00’s aren’t really defined yet. With a liberal gov’t maybe we’re going to see a spike in ‘traditional’ relationship books – the rise of the YA market sort of suggests that.
    I just want good books. If the wenches and wench worthy (Duran, Thomas, James, etc) are leading the way, I’d be a happy girl.

    Reply
  16. Sherrie, here.
    Pat, I couldn’t even begin to predict where books or TV or film are going next. All I know is what I like. I like long books that I can sink into, and be so immersed in that world that for a week after I finish reading it, I walk around in a daze, wondering what the characters are doing and accidentally calling my friends by the characters’ names.
    I also enjoy series books, and I think they’re good for the author, too. After all, you’ve built your audience with the first book in the series, and one presumes they will be auto-buys for the next books in the series.
    I’ve never tried an e-book, so I’m not qualified to comment on them. They’re obviously here to stay, judging by the number of e-publishers, e-authors, and e-readers (human and electronic). I think that’s great! The more options we have to “read” a book, the better, be it a paper book, an e-book, or an audiobook (my personal favorite).

    Reply
  17. Sherrie, here.
    Pat, I couldn’t even begin to predict where books or TV or film are going next. All I know is what I like. I like long books that I can sink into, and be so immersed in that world that for a week after I finish reading it, I walk around in a daze, wondering what the characters are doing and accidentally calling my friends by the characters’ names.
    I also enjoy series books, and I think they’re good for the author, too. After all, you’ve built your audience with the first book in the series, and one presumes they will be auto-buys for the next books in the series.
    I’ve never tried an e-book, so I’m not qualified to comment on them. They’re obviously here to stay, judging by the number of e-publishers, e-authors, and e-readers (human and electronic). I think that’s great! The more options we have to “read” a book, the better, be it a paper book, an e-book, or an audiobook (my personal favorite).

    Reply
  18. Sherrie, here.
    Pat, I couldn’t even begin to predict where books or TV or film are going next. All I know is what I like. I like long books that I can sink into, and be so immersed in that world that for a week after I finish reading it, I walk around in a daze, wondering what the characters are doing and accidentally calling my friends by the characters’ names.
    I also enjoy series books, and I think they’re good for the author, too. After all, you’ve built your audience with the first book in the series, and one presumes they will be auto-buys for the next books in the series.
    I’ve never tried an e-book, so I’m not qualified to comment on them. They’re obviously here to stay, judging by the number of e-publishers, e-authors, and e-readers (human and electronic). I think that’s great! The more options we have to “read” a book, the better, be it a paper book, an e-book, or an audiobook (my personal favorite).

    Reply
  19. Sherrie, here.
    Pat, I couldn’t even begin to predict where books or TV or film are going next. All I know is what I like. I like long books that I can sink into, and be so immersed in that world that for a week after I finish reading it, I walk around in a daze, wondering what the characters are doing and accidentally calling my friends by the characters’ names.
    I also enjoy series books, and I think they’re good for the author, too. After all, you’ve built your audience with the first book in the series, and one presumes they will be auto-buys for the next books in the series.
    I’ve never tried an e-book, so I’m not qualified to comment on them. They’re obviously here to stay, judging by the number of e-publishers, e-authors, and e-readers (human and electronic). I think that’s great! The more options we have to “read” a book, the better, be it a paper book, an e-book, or an audiobook (my personal favorite).

    Reply
  20. Sherrie, here.
    Pat, I couldn’t even begin to predict where books or TV or film are going next. All I know is what I like. I like long books that I can sink into, and be so immersed in that world that for a week after I finish reading it, I walk around in a daze, wondering what the characters are doing and accidentally calling my friends by the characters’ names.
    I also enjoy series books, and I think they’re good for the author, too. After all, you’ve built your audience with the first book in the series, and one presumes they will be auto-buys for the next books in the series.
    I’ve never tried an e-book, so I’m not qualified to comment on them. They’re obviously here to stay, judging by the number of e-publishers, e-authors, and e-readers (human and electronic). I think that’s great! The more options we have to “read” a book, the better, be it a paper book, an e-book, or an audiobook (my personal favorite).

    Reply
  21. I’m in the group Linda spoke of — the ones who are darn tired of authors who substitute sex for story. I really don’t want to waste more time on these spasm by spasm accounts. There are so few authors (Mary Balogh, Madeline Hunter and Loretta Chase are good examples) who use such scenes properly: to tell us something about the characters and their relationship that we couldn’t learn any other way. It seems to me that too many other authors put the scenes in to satisfy their editors or take up room — and that leaves me feeling that I’m not getting my money’s worth.
    I often wish that these writers would realize that what you *don’t* show is often sexier than what you do, and get back to writing novels again instead of cheezball sex manuals (’cause even that part isn’t exactly instructive anymore).
    No wonder people who don’t read romance call it formulaic; I almost have to agree when just about every paperback I pick up in the bookstore & open at random for a sample falls open to another **** scene.
    So nowadays I read a great many older regencies from the 60s-80s, when the ‘formula’ wasn’t so set in concrete and so I don’t know what to expect so far in advance. Right now it’s ‘The Bar Sinister’ by Sheila Simonson, a true classic pulled from the keeper shelf.

    Reply
  22. I’m in the group Linda spoke of — the ones who are darn tired of authors who substitute sex for story. I really don’t want to waste more time on these spasm by spasm accounts. There are so few authors (Mary Balogh, Madeline Hunter and Loretta Chase are good examples) who use such scenes properly: to tell us something about the characters and their relationship that we couldn’t learn any other way. It seems to me that too many other authors put the scenes in to satisfy their editors or take up room — and that leaves me feeling that I’m not getting my money’s worth.
    I often wish that these writers would realize that what you *don’t* show is often sexier than what you do, and get back to writing novels again instead of cheezball sex manuals (’cause even that part isn’t exactly instructive anymore).
    No wonder people who don’t read romance call it formulaic; I almost have to agree when just about every paperback I pick up in the bookstore & open at random for a sample falls open to another **** scene.
    So nowadays I read a great many older regencies from the 60s-80s, when the ‘formula’ wasn’t so set in concrete and so I don’t know what to expect so far in advance. Right now it’s ‘The Bar Sinister’ by Sheila Simonson, a true classic pulled from the keeper shelf.

    Reply
  23. I’m in the group Linda spoke of — the ones who are darn tired of authors who substitute sex for story. I really don’t want to waste more time on these spasm by spasm accounts. There are so few authors (Mary Balogh, Madeline Hunter and Loretta Chase are good examples) who use such scenes properly: to tell us something about the characters and their relationship that we couldn’t learn any other way. It seems to me that too many other authors put the scenes in to satisfy their editors or take up room — and that leaves me feeling that I’m not getting my money’s worth.
    I often wish that these writers would realize that what you *don’t* show is often sexier than what you do, and get back to writing novels again instead of cheezball sex manuals (’cause even that part isn’t exactly instructive anymore).
    No wonder people who don’t read romance call it formulaic; I almost have to agree when just about every paperback I pick up in the bookstore & open at random for a sample falls open to another **** scene.
    So nowadays I read a great many older regencies from the 60s-80s, when the ‘formula’ wasn’t so set in concrete and so I don’t know what to expect so far in advance. Right now it’s ‘The Bar Sinister’ by Sheila Simonson, a true classic pulled from the keeper shelf.

    Reply
  24. I’m in the group Linda spoke of — the ones who are darn tired of authors who substitute sex for story. I really don’t want to waste more time on these spasm by spasm accounts. There are so few authors (Mary Balogh, Madeline Hunter and Loretta Chase are good examples) who use such scenes properly: to tell us something about the characters and their relationship that we couldn’t learn any other way. It seems to me that too many other authors put the scenes in to satisfy their editors or take up room — and that leaves me feeling that I’m not getting my money’s worth.
    I often wish that these writers would realize that what you *don’t* show is often sexier than what you do, and get back to writing novels again instead of cheezball sex manuals (’cause even that part isn’t exactly instructive anymore).
    No wonder people who don’t read romance call it formulaic; I almost have to agree when just about every paperback I pick up in the bookstore & open at random for a sample falls open to another **** scene.
    So nowadays I read a great many older regencies from the 60s-80s, when the ‘formula’ wasn’t so set in concrete and so I don’t know what to expect so far in advance. Right now it’s ‘The Bar Sinister’ by Sheila Simonson, a true classic pulled from the keeper shelf.

    Reply
  25. I’m in the group Linda spoke of — the ones who are darn tired of authors who substitute sex for story. I really don’t want to waste more time on these spasm by spasm accounts. There are so few authors (Mary Balogh, Madeline Hunter and Loretta Chase are good examples) who use such scenes properly: to tell us something about the characters and their relationship that we couldn’t learn any other way. It seems to me that too many other authors put the scenes in to satisfy their editors or take up room — and that leaves me feeling that I’m not getting my money’s worth.
    I often wish that these writers would realize that what you *don’t* show is often sexier than what you do, and get back to writing novels again instead of cheezball sex manuals (’cause even that part isn’t exactly instructive anymore).
    No wonder people who don’t read romance call it formulaic; I almost have to agree when just about every paperback I pick up in the bookstore & open at random for a sample falls open to another **** scene.
    So nowadays I read a great many older regencies from the 60s-80s, when the ‘formula’ wasn’t so set in concrete and so I don’t know what to expect so far in advance. Right now it’s ‘The Bar Sinister’ by Sheila Simonson, a true classic pulled from the keeper shelf.

    Reply
  26. I think the future is certain for interactive. Design your own ballgowns….waltz with a good looking stud….meet the King. I believe we all really want to go there and its just that we need you to take us there. People like me need your imagination as our inspiration. Plop us down in the middle of _________. I guess virtual reality scenerios.

    Reply
  27. I think the future is certain for interactive. Design your own ballgowns….waltz with a good looking stud….meet the King. I believe we all really want to go there and its just that we need you to take us there. People like me need your imagination as our inspiration. Plop us down in the middle of _________. I guess virtual reality scenerios.

    Reply
  28. I think the future is certain for interactive. Design your own ballgowns….waltz with a good looking stud….meet the King. I believe we all really want to go there and its just that we need you to take us there. People like me need your imagination as our inspiration. Plop us down in the middle of _________. I guess virtual reality scenerios.

    Reply
  29. I think the future is certain for interactive. Design your own ballgowns….waltz with a good looking stud….meet the King. I believe we all really want to go there and its just that we need you to take us there. People like me need your imagination as our inspiration. Plop us down in the middle of _________. I guess virtual reality scenerios.

    Reply
  30. I think the future is certain for interactive. Design your own ballgowns….waltz with a good looking stud….meet the King. I believe we all really want to go there and its just that we need you to take us there. People like me need your imagination as our inspiration. Plop us down in the middle of _________. I guess virtual reality scenerios.

    Reply
  31. Wow, interesting points! I think some readers need the explicit sex scenes because they lack our imagination. But if we add Julie’s interactive designs in the future… Just, wow. I can definitely see the design your own gown feature, but I’m afraid to think where the design your own sex might lead. “G”
    And you’re right, Liz, the DRM issue haunts us, but formatting didn’t stop a lot of different kinds of tapes being sold in the music industry. And I think TVs are still fighting over video recordings. We’ll get there, but it’s a new industry. I just wish publishers weren’t so darned technologically naive.

    Reply
  32. Wow, interesting points! I think some readers need the explicit sex scenes because they lack our imagination. But if we add Julie’s interactive designs in the future… Just, wow. I can definitely see the design your own gown feature, but I’m afraid to think where the design your own sex might lead. “G”
    And you’re right, Liz, the DRM issue haunts us, but formatting didn’t stop a lot of different kinds of tapes being sold in the music industry. And I think TVs are still fighting over video recordings. We’ll get there, but it’s a new industry. I just wish publishers weren’t so darned technologically naive.

    Reply
  33. Wow, interesting points! I think some readers need the explicit sex scenes because they lack our imagination. But if we add Julie’s interactive designs in the future… Just, wow. I can definitely see the design your own gown feature, but I’m afraid to think where the design your own sex might lead. “G”
    And you’re right, Liz, the DRM issue haunts us, but formatting didn’t stop a lot of different kinds of tapes being sold in the music industry. And I think TVs are still fighting over video recordings. We’ll get there, but it’s a new industry. I just wish publishers weren’t so darned technologically naive.

    Reply
  34. Wow, interesting points! I think some readers need the explicit sex scenes because they lack our imagination. But if we add Julie’s interactive designs in the future… Just, wow. I can definitely see the design your own gown feature, but I’m afraid to think where the design your own sex might lead. “G”
    And you’re right, Liz, the DRM issue haunts us, but formatting didn’t stop a lot of different kinds of tapes being sold in the music industry. And I think TVs are still fighting over video recordings. We’ll get there, but it’s a new industry. I just wish publishers weren’t so darned technologically naive.

    Reply
  35. Wow, interesting points! I think some readers need the explicit sex scenes because they lack our imagination. But if we add Julie’s interactive designs in the future… Just, wow. I can definitely see the design your own gown feature, but I’m afraid to think where the design your own sex might lead. “G”
    And you’re right, Liz, the DRM issue haunts us, but formatting didn’t stop a lot of different kinds of tapes being sold in the music industry. And I think TVs are still fighting over video recordings. We’ll get there, but it’s a new industry. I just wish publishers weren’t so darned technologically naive.

    Reply
  36. Really interesting post, Pat, and you’ve provoked some great reader response. Sex is a two-edged sword (er, pardon the image) Yes, it’s a huge trend right now, with editors insisting books be steamier than ever. Will it last? Dunno. There’s a fine line between it enhancing the story/characters, and simply being there to add so-called heat to a book.
    As for series, I think their appeal will always be there. Having rich textured world to go to can be wonderful. I’m a huge fan of the Elizabeth Peters Amelia Peabody series, which now has three generations of the heroine’s family, along with countless friends and extended family in both England and Egypt. I go back to the series time and time again to lose myself in it. I also enjoy several mystery series, where the sleuth becomes more a deeply developed character with each case.
    How we will read stories is the biggest question these days. I happen to prefer ink and paper, but embrace the fact that there are so many choices, and that they keep evolving every day.

    Reply
  37. Really interesting post, Pat, and you’ve provoked some great reader response. Sex is a two-edged sword (er, pardon the image) Yes, it’s a huge trend right now, with editors insisting books be steamier than ever. Will it last? Dunno. There’s a fine line between it enhancing the story/characters, and simply being there to add so-called heat to a book.
    As for series, I think their appeal will always be there. Having rich textured world to go to can be wonderful. I’m a huge fan of the Elizabeth Peters Amelia Peabody series, which now has three generations of the heroine’s family, along with countless friends and extended family in both England and Egypt. I go back to the series time and time again to lose myself in it. I also enjoy several mystery series, where the sleuth becomes more a deeply developed character with each case.
    How we will read stories is the biggest question these days. I happen to prefer ink and paper, but embrace the fact that there are so many choices, and that they keep evolving every day.

    Reply
  38. Really interesting post, Pat, and you’ve provoked some great reader response. Sex is a two-edged sword (er, pardon the image) Yes, it’s a huge trend right now, with editors insisting books be steamier than ever. Will it last? Dunno. There’s a fine line between it enhancing the story/characters, and simply being there to add so-called heat to a book.
    As for series, I think their appeal will always be there. Having rich textured world to go to can be wonderful. I’m a huge fan of the Elizabeth Peters Amelia Peabody series, which now has three generations of the heroine’s family, along with countless friends and extended family in both England and Egypt. I go back to the series time and time again to lose myself in it. I also enjoy several mystery series, where the sleuth becomes more a deeply developed character with each case.
    How we will read stories is the biggest question these days. I happen to prefer ink and paper, but embrace the fact that there are so many choices, and that they keep evolving every day.

    Reply
  39. Really interesting post, Pat, and you’ve provoked some great reader response. Sex is a two-edged sword (er, pardon the image) Yes, it’s a huge trend right now, with editors insisting books be steamier than ever. Will it last? Dunno. There’s a fine line between it enhancing the story/characters, and simply being there to add so-called heat to a book.
    As for series, I think their appeal will always be there. Having rich textured world to go to can be wonderful. I’m a huge fan of the Elizabeth Peters Amelia Peabody series, which now has three generations of the heroine’s family, along with countless friends and extended family in both England and Egypt. I go back to the series time and time again to lose myself in it. I also enjoy several mystery series, where the sleuth becomes more a deeply developed character with each case.
    How we will read stories is the biggest question these days. I happen to prefer ink and paper, but embrace the fact that there are so many choices, and that they keep evolving every day.

    Reply
  40. Really interesting post, Pat, and you’ve provoked some great reader response. Sex is a two-edged sword (er, pardon the image) Yes, it’s a huge trend right now, with editors insisting books be steamier than ever. Will it last? Dunno. There’s a fine line between it enhancing the story/characters, and simply being there to add so-called heat to a book.
    As for series, I think their appeal will always be there. Having rich textured world to go to can be wonderful. I’m a huge fan of the Elizabeth Peters Amelia Peabody series, which now has three generations of the heroine’s family, along with countless friends and extended family in both England and Egypt. I go back to the series time and time again to lose myself in it. I also enjoy several mystery series, where the sleuth becomes more a deeply developed character with each case.
    How we will read stories is the biggest question these days. I happen to prefer ink and paper, but embrace the fact that there are so many choices, and that they keep evolving every day.

    Reply
  41. Linda – I went to the site you linked, but I don’t see how to tell who does regencies or historicals vs who does contemporaries or inspirationals (I have not much interest in the latter). Can you suggest some names?

    Reply
  42. Linda – I went to the site you linked, but I don’t see how to tell who does regencies or historicals vs who does contemporaries or inspirationals (I have not much interest in the latter). Can you suggest some names?

    Reply
  43. Linda – I went to the site you linked, but I don’t see how to tell who does regencies or historicals vs who does contemporaries or inspirationals (I have not much interest in the latter). Can you suggest some names?

    Reply
  44. Linda – I went to the site you linked, but I don’t see how to tell who does regencies or historicals vs who does contemporaries or inspirationals (I have not much interest in the latter). Can you suggest some names?

    Reply
  45. Linda – I went to the site you linked, but I don’t see how to tell who does regencies or historicals vs who does contemporaries or inspirationals (I have not much interest in the latter). Can you suggest some names?

    Reply
  46. Janice,
    Regencies: me (Linda Banche), Maggi Andersen, Joanna Waugh, Donna Hatch, Amy Corwin
    Historicals: Lindsay Townsend (medievals), Joyce DiPastena, Nicole Zoltack (fantasy medieval), Sandra Sookoo (early 20th century), Sandra Kay, Celia Yeary, Cheryl Pierson (westerns)
    There is also a yahoo group
    http://groups.yahoo.com/group/classicromancerevival/
    if you’re into yahoo groups.
    There are 58 of us so far in Classic Romance Revival, and we all write sweet or close to it (not very much sex). We’re hoping the word gets out.
    Send me email if you want at linda@lindabanche.com

    Reply
  47. Janice,
    Regencies: me (Linda Banche), Maggi Andersen, Joanna Waugh, Donna Hatch, Amy Corwin
    Historicals: Lindsay Townsend (medievals), Joyce DiPastena, Nicole Zoltack (fantasy medieval), Sandra Sookoo (early 20th century), Sandra Kay, Celia Yeary, Cheryl Pierson (westerns)
    There is also a yahoo group
    http://groups.yahoo.com/group/classicromancerevival/
    if you’re into yahoo groups.
    There are 58 of us so far in Classic Romance Revival, and we all write sweet or close to it (not very much sex). We’re hoping the word gets out.
    Send me email if you want at linda@lindabanche.com

    Reply
  48. Janice,
    Regencies: me (Linda Banche), Maggi Andersen, Joanna Waugh, Donna Hatch, Amy Corwin
    Historicals: Lindsay Townsend (medievals), Joyce DiPastena, Nicole Zoltack (fantasy medieval), Sandra Sookoo (early 20th century), Sandra Kay, Celia Yeary, Cheryl Pierson (westerns)
    There is also a yahoo group
    http://groups.yahoo.com/group/classicromancerevival/
    if you’re into yahoo groups.
    There are 58 of us so far in Classic Romance Revival, and we all write sweet or close to it (not very much sex). We’re hoping the word gets out.
    Send me email if you want at linda@lindabanche.com

    Reply
  49. Janice,
    Regencies: me (Linda Banche), Maggi Andersen, Joanna Waugh, Donna Hatch, Amy Corwin
    Historicals: Lindsay Townsend (medievals), Joyce DiPastena, Nicole Zoltack (fantasy medieval), Sandra Sookoo (early 20th century), Sandra Kay, Celia Yeary, Cheryl Pierson (westerns)
    There is also a yahoo group
    http://groups.yahoo.com/group/classicromancerevival/
    if you’re into yahoo groups.
    There are 58 of us so far in Classic Romance Revival, and we all write sweet or close to it (not very much sex). We’re hoping the word gets out.
    Send me email if you want at linda@lindabanche.com

    Reply
  50. Janice,
    Regencies: me (Linda Banche), Maggi Andersen, Joanna Waugh, Donna Hatch, Amy Corwin
    Historicals: Lindsay Townsend (medievals), Joyce DiPastena, Nicole Zoltack (fantasy medieval), Sandra Sookoo (early 20th century), Sandra Kay, Celia Yeary, Cheryl Pierson (westerns)
    There is also a yahoo group
    http://groups.yahoo.com/group/classicromancerevival/
    if you’re into yahoo groups.
    There are 58 of us so far in Classic Romance Revival, and we all write sweet or close to it (not very much sex). We’re hoping the word gets out.
    Send me email if you want at linda@lindabanche.com

    Reply

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