I am a fairly new writer, at least I consider myself one. After three years of learning the craft, though, perhaps I should change my self concept. I still can’t see myself as growing up just yet. Anyway, with that mindset, I continue to write, write, write as if my life depended on it and read, read, read to learn from the hundreds of talented writers out there in the world.
I have to make a confession. I didn’t read my first romance until three years ago, AFTER I wrote my first book and it was supposed to be a romance! Before discovering romances, I swore off reading anymore novels. They all made me cry. None of the outcomes in the stories were satisfying for me, leaving me either aggravated the author could write it that way or sad beyond belief. I am one of those people who digest a book and internalize it emotionally. For me the only kind of books I could stomach were non-fiction books. I learned a ton of various stuff over the past fifteen years!
Needless to say, when I found out happy endings were inevitable in a romance, I devoured them. I didn’t discriminate genres either, but finally found myself drawn to Contemporary and Historical romances from all sorts of authors. So after a few hundred of those books I discovered my most favorite authors in Contemporary romance. These women are the writers I pray I can emulate. My mother introduced me to LaVyrle Spencer and a dear writer friend introduced me to Susan Elizabeth Phillips. I have finally found books I absolutely love to read.
LaVyrle, sadly, retired several years ago. I have been collecting her books from the antique shops, used book stores in the area and from bookstores across the country. I am also in the process of purchasing SEP’s backlist.
I read every other sort of book still, but I throw in one of these books to keep me focused.
These women write about strong characters with wounded lives and insurmountable circumstances. I love the way the hero and heroine’s lives are meshed so change is inevitable, improving each other’s life in their relationship. I want to see the characters grow from the conflict they encounter in their own personalities. The emotions written on the page are powerful and influential to a fledgling writer as myself.
These are the sort of stories Nena wants to write. Passion and romance. Learning how to make that happen is an exciting challenge that drives me to the written word.
I’d love to hear who influences your writing. Leave a comment to share.