What am I working on?
I’m writing a Romantic Suspense for Entangled Publishing that will be due out later this year. It’s book two of a continuity that I’ve set up with two other authors. The series starts off at The Great Exhibition of London 1851 and centres around the company Steel Hawk—who are asked to bring their secure locking device so that famous diamond - The Pasha Star of Zarrenburg, can be safely exhibited.
What happens at the exhibition sends ripples through Steel Hawk and the Royal family of Zarrenburg—entwining their destinies forever.
My book is set in present day, in a world of high-tech security, a royal coronation, a missing diamond and a man who threatens to destroy Steel Hawk’s reputation. It features alpha-geek Head of Research and Development for Steel Hawk, Adam Steel, and his reformed-rebel personal assistant, Honeysuckle Hawk.
There’s a tremendous amount of plotting involved across the three books but writing Adam and Honeysuckle’s story is delicious fun.
I’ve also just turned in book two for HarperImpulse – working title: The Love List. This contemporary romance is the second in a series of three and focuses on the story of Nora King (sister of Jared King – the hero of Her Best Laid Plans, which came out last week!).
With my romantic suspense I love writing some of the story from the villain’s POV. It’s very important to write believable characters—not
everyone is one hundred per cent evil! Or if they are for the purposes of fiction, then any “bwahahaha” needs to be balanced by relatable flaws and multiple layers to their character.
With my contemporary romance I use a little more humour and get to focus completely on the relationship between the H/H.
Why do I write what I do?
It makes me happy. I love storytelling, and, in a world where it’s far too easy to settle back, opt out, and be cynical, I like to feel that reading romance can redress the balance a little. And because people sometimes struggle when the
world does turn serious, I like feeling I might be able to offer some entertainment and escape.
How does my writing process work?
I think I’m part plotter, part pantser! I’m definitely learning that some books I have to plan to the nth degree and some seem to simply unfold.
I always start out with a scene which pops into my head and just refuses to let go so that I end up mulling over “what if” scenarios as the
characters start telling me things about themselves. I tend to write a loose outline because I like to leave myself a little wiggle-room for the plot to breathe and take unexpected turns.
Next comes the choosing of the notebook! Finding the right one is a ritual that requires considerable thought and…a lovely shopping trip. The notebook must be both beautiful and practical and contain four sections for:
Characterisation, Research, Plotting Journal and Edits.
I take this notebook everywhere with me when I’m writing the book and by the time I press “send” on the manuscript, it has about three different colours of ink in it, neat writing,
illegible writing and post-it notes stuck in it and to it which never seem to mean a thing to me when I get around to reading them!
I use my plotting journal section to write the number of words I’ve written that day, a VERY loose plan for what I want to write the next day
and any light-bulb moments that come to me that feed into the main characters’ motivation. Yes – I really do use an actual “lightbulb” symbol!
The plotting CHART makes an appearance when I’m about a third of the way through the first draft and all the different threads are starting to come together and I want to make sure I don’t leave any loose ends.
At the end of it all—somehow – through much pondering, problem-solving, writing, charting, spreadsheeting, procrastinating, angsting and yet more writing, my book is born!
And now I’m going to let you in on who I’ve tagged to share their Writing Process with you all next week….
It’s the uber talented author Charlotte Phillips
Follow her post on the 17th March on her website here: