Let’s Get Healthy: Day Forty-nine (AKA Why Having A Writing Tribe Is Good) #romancefit
Time on Treadmill: 30 minutes.
Productivity level: Surprisingly high.
One of the useful things about belonging to a crack writing group is that 1) you can trust them to tell you the truth about your latest magnum opus, 2) you can rely on them to find ways to help you around stuck spots, and 3) you can brainstorm with them when you just don’t know what to do about a plot.
So, as you know (Bob), I’m working on Uncertainty Principle, which is the second book in my Pacifica Rising series. The first book, Degree of Resistance, was different from all of my other genre romance novels because it contained a hefty amount of SF, so much so that it kinda scared off the romance readers who didn’t understand why I put so much tech in there (and the SF readers said, “Is this a kissing book? Ew”). Mind you, Degree has gotten fantastic reviews from review sites, but it hasn’t sold very well because of that hefty SF element. Even the editor for that book said, “You know, this isn’t a Nicola book, despite the romance. It’s a Melanie book.”
And here I am, noodling around with the sequel. I’ve been trying to shoehorn in more romance (Evie and Ben are still the main couple, but there’s a secondary romance with security guard Rob and a refugee from another protectorate who turns out to be an assassin assigned to kill Ben and his daughter), but it’s not working. I just can’t get the book fired up, even though I know the plot pretty well, because I also have to deal with Ben’s incipient PTSD from being under chancellor control for twelve years and Evie’s discovery about her parents’ relationship with her nominal boss) . So I explained it to my writing group, and they all agreed that once again this is not a Nicola book, it’s a Melanie book, and I shouldn’t worry too much about making it an SF romance novel and just make it a romantic SF novel (where there’s a romantic side plot but the SF is the core of the story). And I think I’m going to have to do that because otherwise it just doesn’t work. Pity I can’t market the series as Melanie Fletcher now, but it’s a little too late for that.