I’ve been doing a lot of thinking during this down-writing time while painting. About where I am and where I’m going. I recently hit my three-year writing anniversary – still without a sale. I think it’s safe to say any naive expectations I had about the publishing world being a piece of cake have all but flown out the window.
In a recent post at Romance Worth Killing For, Joan talked about writing being more than just writing. That it encompasses things like critting, research, study, classes, and a keen eye for the market. I agree. And I’ve been doing those things. Especially studying the market.
There have been a lot of first sales on the loops. It’s hard to read the constant barrage of “I sold!” and not feel a little melancholy at the state of your own publication endeavors. But when I look at what’s selling, I have to admit to myself that the brunt of the sales I’m hearing about are erotica sales. Some young adult, a few paranormals. That’s not to say nothing else is selling – I’ve seen a few contemporary romance sales to HQ, a western to Kensington, etc. – but the majority of what’s selling isn’t what I write. Most of the RS sales I’m hearing about are from established authors.
So that makes me look at what I write and say, “Well, why are you writing it?”
Easy. Because I love romantic suspense. That’s where my heart it. It’s what I read and what I like to write. Could I write something else? Sure. I could. Would it sell? I don’t know. I know I’m as good as some of the people who are selling erotica and young adult. I might even have a better chance at making a sale if I wrote either of those, but do I want to?
The answer right now is no. And because it’s not something I really want to do, I don’t think I’d be working to the level I am now.
Where does that leave me? I want to be published in RS. I want my books in print. I want to sell to a major NY house. And I’m willing to wait for that to happen. It might not happen when I want it to, but I know deep down it will if I keep on going.
Last night J and I were chatting, and she said, “I guess there has to be a Plan B at some point.” At the time we were talking about print pubs vs. epubs. I can sort of see her point. There’s a lure there to sub to an epub. To get a little validation, to join the crowd. I know of a lot of people who are selling to epubs – a lot of good writers. I could do that too, but when I look at my goals and what I really want, being pubbed by an epub right now isn’t one of them. That in no way is a reflection of one being better than the other, it’s just my own personal wants and needs at the moment.
All of this is tumbling through my head as I plot my next book. It will be another romantic suspense. It might not sell, but I’ll keep writing. I know I picked a competitive genre to write in. I also know at some point my persistence is going to pay off. I hope so, at least.
What do you guys think? Do you have a Plan B?