Saturday, March 17, 2018

An eclectic group of writing companions

The first time I tried to collaborate on a novel, a friend of mine and I decided to write a quick Harlequin-type historical romance to get our foot in the door of being a published author. I wrote the first and second scene and sent it to her. I said make any changes you like. Silence.
When I saw her at our next critique meeting, I asked what she thought, etc. She said, "I don't like heroine's who cry." (The girl was at her father's funeral.)
That was it. She didn't submit her view of the scene, or write a scene of her own-though I encouraged that. The collaboration crumbled to dust before it even started. I know she liked my writing, so that wasn't the issue. I just let it go. We're still friends.

Years passed. I found a publisher for my first novel. They overpriced their books. Then I was invited to join my current publisher, a wise move.

I have two fantastic critique groups that I run my chapters through on-line, so that's a bit like having partners.
Some will Beta read for me, too.

Last year I was asked to write a novel in the Canadian Historical Brides Series. Very exciting. Author Nancy M. Bell would be my collaborator. I hadn't cyber-met Nancy before, so I wasn't certain how this would pan out. Thankfully, Nancy was wonderful to work with. I couldn't have asked for a better partner.
Nancy M. Bell

I had researched the eighteenth century (mostly England) extensively. But now I needed to search Canadian 18th. c. history, to find an inciting incident. What better than the Loyalists who fled the American Revolution, but seen from the view of the French settlers in a land that was once New France, and an Englishwoman just arrived to marry a soldier, thrown into the mix.
Nancy found rare research documents, contacted the museum in Saint John, New Brunswick for info. And I ran each chapter through her for vetting. She was always there for support in the story. Not to mention, a very nice lady.

In conclusion, my dog, Fritzie, thinks he's my major partner, since he was a pup. Now he's fifteen. Don't tell him but he is more a lap warmer than a contributor to my writing; however, writers need comforting and he supplies that.

Recently released, my collaboration with Nancy- On a Stormy Primeval Shore

In 1784, Englishwoman Amelia sails to New Brunswick, a land overrun by Loyalists escaping the American Revolution, to marry a soldier whom she rejects. Acadian Gilbert fights to preserve his heritage and property—will they find love when events seek to destroy them?

Ebook and paperback is available at Amazon and All Markets

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Diane Scott Lewis grew up in California, traveled the world with the navy, edited for magazines and an on-line publisher. She lives in Pennsylvania with her husband.