On Writing & Publishing by Robin D. Owens

Personal notes on writing techniques, writing a novel, my writing career and threading your way through publishing a book.

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Location: Denver, United States

RITA Award Winning Author -- that's like the Oscar, folks! Futuristic/Fantasy Romance and Fantasy with Romantic Subplots.

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Wednesday, December 14, 2005


I went walking with my friend Kay Bergstrom (Cassie Miles) for EXCERCISE yesterday and the foremost thing on her mind was plotting her next Harlequin Intrique (out in 2007, the 2006 books are already done). She is a plotter, I am a pantzer, but a problem was really gnawing at her.

Why would a risk-adverse woman knowingly meet with a serial killer? We walked around Washington Park and I threw out angles -- the best thing would be knowing she walked into a trap but planning to save herself anyway. The killer had kidnapped someone -- then I said a pet and we talked about bunnies -- and the killer was going to torture her bunny and kill it if she didn't show up...

Why wouldn't she tell the super-sexy-FBI-hero? Because she's sensible and she doesn't like the way he's handled things so far, and he might not care whether the bunny went to the great carrot patch in the sky.

Kay liked the idea, we finished our walk, went up to her place, she offered tea and I hesitantly accepted (Ok, we can talk for hours and that means less writing time for both of us). We talked about publishing and wondered about how to hit big. My personal fantasy is a TV interview, the title of which is "J.K. Rowling loves reading Robin D. Owens' books!" (I'm sure she doesn't know of me, has never read my work and my work probably isn't in the genres she reads anyway...)

And about an hour later, Kay circled back to the same topic in her book. Obviously, though I liked the pet thing and thought it would add LOTS to her book, it didn't quite fit what she wanted. She decided that it was the hero who was captured ready to be tortured and murdered and that excited us both.

Even if buddies don't give you the exact solution, just talking and brainstorming may lead to your own. And yes, I'm sure we've discussed it before. But another point of this might be that she could have used the bunny thing and made it work anyway OR that she could still use the bunny thing in a completely different book -- OR that if she'd used the bunny idea, it WOULD be a completely different book.

So may plotting come easy to you today,


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