Just Published. I've known Robin for a quite some time from online communities and I've had the pleasure of meeting her in person. She's such a sweetheart and I couldn't be happier to see her a published author and doing so well. Robin's published with Entangled and I'm interested to see how it all came about.
The basics of Robin's first novel is as follows:
Title: A Night of Southern Comfort
Genre: Contemporary Category
Publisher: Entangled Publishing
Published Date: June 15, 2012
One night of passion...
Detective Jackson Cantrell
never imagined that one night with an irresistible stranger would turn his life
upside down. He’s spent years living in the shadows, but Dr. Michaela Roarke
awakened a passion inside him he'd buried years ago.
He never expected the woman
would turn out to be the governor's daughter...and his next assignment. The
governor blackmails Jackson to secretly watch over Michaela and protect her
from a stalker, or kiss his dream job at the FBI good-bye. Swearing to keep
things strictly professional, Jackson moves in with Michaela. Too bad his heart
can't keep the same promise.
But when the stalker's
attacks quickly escalate beyond mere photographs to bodily harm, Jackson must
race to save Michaela's life. And he’ll have to figure out how to keep her once
she discovers his lie.
So, let's get
started with the specifics! How would you describe what you
I write hot, sexy, books
where the hero and heroine can't keep their hands off each other. They
also think they can fool around and not fall in love and I love to prove them
LOL. Sounds like a great 'core
story' concept. What’s your writing process in a
I think up the first line -
it pops into my head- and then I canoodle on it until I figure out what it's
about and who it's about. Once I have that in my head I figure out the ending
and I write a one-page, bulletized plot outline that looks like the rantings of
a crazy person. The I open up the Word document and start with page one
and write in a straight linear fashion. I cannot jump around - Although I
really wish I could!
And I wish I could write sequentially like that!What has your submission
history looked like? Rejections? Manuscripts written? Number of years ‘seriously
I started wriiting
seriously towards publication three years ago. ANoSC is my second
completed manuscript (the first one was terrible dreck). I had wonderful
success with contests, many requests but was rejected many times for many
reasons - "not a good fit" or "too sexy". But,
still, I firmly believe that contests are a fantastic way to get excellent
feedback, improve your craft and to become acclimated to the submission
process. The comments will toughen you up for the rejections. ANoSc
was rejected twice before it sold to Entangled Publishing.
I totally agree about contests. How did you pick your
I write category romance
and there are only so many cowboys in that rodeo. My choices of publisher
were limted and once I was rejected there was only so much I could do with that
book. When I learned about Entangled starting a category romance line and
that Lori Wilde and Alethea Spirison-Hopson were part of it, I knew I wanted to
be a part of it. I submitted it to them and crossed my fingers and toes.
What’s your ‘call’ story?
I'm a night owl so it was
11:30 pm and I checked my email and saw that I had one from Lori Wilde. It
had only been one week since my submission and I figured that it was a
rejection with that fast turnaround. I opened it up and had to read it
about 900 times before I understood that she wanted to buy my book.
The Main Man was asleep and I woke him up to tell him and he went downstairs
and popped a cork on a champagne bottle and we celebrated with a midnight
toast. He went back to bed and I didn't sleep a wink. ;)
Aw, how romantic! Did you have an agent
when you sold? Now?
Nope. No agent and I
still don't have one. I'm a contract attorney in real-life and I have an
intellectual property attorney at my disposal, so I don't really see the need
at this point. If I ever branch out into single-title, I'll get one.
What’s it like working with a publisher and editor? Are
revisions really as bad as you hear?
My revisions were not so
bad. Now, I trashed an entire chapter - yep, hit the delete key and let
it go- because it just didn't work, I knew it didn;t work and my editor (the
wonderful Ann Kopchik) was honest with me. Revisions were hard but you have to
leave your pride at the door and do whatever you have to do to make your book
the best it can be.
And your ego, right? So, how did you feel the first time you saw your cover? How much input
did you have?
I cried. I didn't see
my cover until the day before release because Entangled keeps them close-hold
but I loved it on sight. I filled out the cover art form and gave descriptions
etc but I actually found the photo and attached it as a "this one speaks
to me" suggestion. I was psyched that my cover artist, Heather Howland,
used it. I LOVE my cover.
Aw, that's so great. What was release day like?
I took the day off and
ended up sleeping a lot because I was sick as a dog. Every couple hours,
I would check Amazon and B&N and then go back to bed. It went live around
6:30 pm and then I was on the computer answering emails, FB messages etc. from
friends. It was an amazing day even with the TheraFlu haze.
Sorry to hear you were sick. At least it was memorable! How did you market
Blogging. Lots of blogging
- thanks Kaily! My publisher has ads on FB and Goodreads and I have them
on different romance review sites. I didn't have a huge fan base but I have
been amazed by the word-of-mouth promotion for my book. The lady/friend
who does my waxing (TMI?) has my cover up in her spa and lots of her clients
have bought the book.
most surprising thing you learned during the publishing
That so many people really
do want you to succeed. We hear so much about evil agents, terrible publishers
etc but I have also met so many people who genuinely want you to succeed.
I try to surround myself with positive people like that and ignore the jerks.
That's a great approach. What do you think were the factors that got you
Timing. My book literally landed on the right desk at the right
time. Entangled was looking for new authors and I pushed send on that
email so fast, I looked like one of the slo-mo characters in the Matrix. I was
ready and didn't hesitate. Cherry Adair talks about working hard so that
you are ready when the opportunity comes to you. I worked hard to improve my
craft and I submitted my book knowing that it might be rejected but also that I
had no chance of getting it published if it stayed on my computer.
Yeah, there is a luck factor BUT a book still has to be good. What’s your 5 year plan look like?
I think I would still like to write category
romance because I just love the genre. But, I think by then I will want
to try my hand at single-title and see how that goes.
Good for you and yeah!
What’s up next for you?
I just sold a Christmas
novella, "Secret Santa baby" to the Flirt line at Entangled. I
have two projects - a paranormal and a super-sexy category - in acquisitions
for the Covet and Brazen line at Entanged. And, right now, I'm writing
the book proposal for the three sequels to ANoSC. Each of the "The
Boys" in that book get their own HEA.
Congrats!! I love series and connected books :). What’s the best advice you can impart to
writers aspiring to be published?
Keep writing. Use contests strategically to ge
your books out of the slush pile and on an editor or agents desk. Finish
the book, polish it and send it out.
Great advice of course. Now for some fun! If you were stranded on a desert
island but could only take 1 thing from each of the following categories, what
would it be & why:
husband. I'd be guaranteed a fun time because he is so hilarious. (and
he;s a former Naval Officer and went through survival training - we would be
chicken. The incredible, edible egg!
caramel chocolate squares. Why not? You gotta have something sinful
After Joe" by Harper Fox.
Bruce Springsteen collection - not including anything post "Tunnel of
Love" He became too preachy after that record . . . Just sing, dude. Don't
preach at me.
Personal Item: A
I hear ya on the razor! Robin, thanks so much for being here on Just Published today. It was so great to learn more about your journey and experience your path to publication with you. I'd wish you much continued and awesome success, but I know you're already well on your way. Big hugs!!
If you'd like to learn more about Robin and her books, please check her out:
AND Robin will be giving away a copy of her ebook to one random commenter through Thursday 5 p.m. EDT. Why don't we make it easy by asking: What makes a book a GREAT book for you?
Patience over the Long, Long Haul
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