On Writing Romance

Almost two years have gone by since I joined my local chapter of Romance Writers of America. It’s been a journey through three manuscripts and a decision to indie publish. Many guests have come and offered their expertise to club meetings and I’ve soaked it up like a sponge. I began looking for tools I could use. I read a lot of books. One of the books that I read was put out by my chapter and was just the kind of book I like to read. It’s an anthology of several writers in our group, offering their words of wisdom. The book is called Writing Romance The Ultimate Guide on Craft, Creation and Industry Connections. One article in particular by Doreen DeSalvo helped me decide to indie publish. She share’s five reasons you might want to e-pub yourself.

  • When your book is Stranger than a palm tree on Mt. Everest.   She says that e-pubbers blaze new trails. Traditional publishers won’t touch certain genres or styles. Blaze your own trail.
  • When you want a personal touch.  When you want questions answered, e-pubs will be more approachable than the big NY firms.
  • When you’re almost – but not quite – ready for New York.  You’ll get more attention, whether that comes at revision time or with your craft, they are there for you.
  • For the money.  You don’t get as large an advance but you get paid more promptly and at a larger pecentage rate.
  • When you crave instant gratification.  DeSalvo explains that it is not “instant” per se but it is much faster than the tradional publishing route.

Read the rest of the article in the Writing Romance The Ultimate Guide on Craft, Creation and IndustryConnections  for more information on e-pubbing and other great information like goal, motivation and conflict and how to feed your muse. For more posts on this great book check out the following blogs Karysa Faire’s Way  , Reina Williams  and Beth Barany.



Six Sentence Sunday is here again! Six Sentence Sunday is all about sharing six sentences of your work in progress with the world. Click on the link to take you to a hundred plus other authors who are doing the same thing I am. It’s a great way to find about about authors and get a taste of their writing.

For my selection this week I am taking six sentences from my book Stained. It will be released digitally in September. It’s still technically a work in progress as I am in the final edits right now. The heroine is a natural-born Irish witch named Thorn who is also a tattoo artist. She lives in Berkeley, California. The hero is a homicide Detective named Se. It’s pronounced Shay. His name is Gaelic for Raven. Thorn’s clients start turning up dead and the police suspect her of being a serial killer. Se has to prove her innocence. Enjoy!

Now she was skyclad, having tossed her clothes off for the rest of her ritual. Twirling and moving in a carefree manner, she was
focused on her magick. She chanted and danced. She felt secure knowing that no one would be around to see, but he was watching in the dawn. Silently he moved closer, the soft bare earth of the Berkeley hills beneath his feet.

A set smile was on his lips but his eyes were dead pools of black as he walked right through her circle.

The Art of Irezumi Tattoo

Irezumi  is a form of Japanese tattooing. Literally translated it means piercing or stabbing the skin with blue or green. Irezumi may possibly go back to the paleolithic times, as far as 10,000 BC. Simple cord like markings on paleolithic man are thought to be tattoos. There is still much debate about this. In the Yayoi period, 300 BC to 300 AD Irezumi was prevalent and talked about by Chinese visitors. The tattoos of this time period were thought to have spiritual and status meanings.  By the Kofun period, 300 AD to 600 AD the symbolism behind tattooing or Irezumi had started to turn. As in Rome, tattoos were now beginning to be used as a punishment on criminals to mark them.

It wasn’t until the end of the Edo period 1868 that decorative tattooing really flourished. Mythical creatures like dragrons and  ferocious tigers were popular. Woodblock artists started tattooing their clients using the same tools like chisels and gouges and most importantly Nara Ink that turns blue green under the skin.


Soon it became a criminal offense to get tattooed. Irezumi went underground. In 1945 the onslaught of Armed forces legalized tattooing and once again you could get a tattoo but it still had a criminal element as it was favored by the Japanese mafia and still has that stigma at present.

Today’s Japanese youth get more of the Americanized tattoos that can be easily hidden, but some very wealthy and very dedicated get an Irezumi. It can take up to $50,000 and 30 years according to one source, to get a full body done. Many tattoo artists have traveled to Japan to learn the art of Irezumi for example Thomas Lockhart, legend in the tattoo world,  has gotten tattooed himself by famous Irezumi artists.

You may ask how this all applies to writing or to me? In my book Stained, which will be released digitally in September, the heroine is a tattoo artist who has studied Irezumi. She also happens to be an Irish natural born witch. She’s opened a tattoo parlor on Telegraph Avenue in Berkeley, California where she weaves her art and spells into unique tattoos for her supernatural customers who start to turn up dead.

A newly inked tattoo.

For those who can endure the pain or for those who equate tattoo pain with the pleasure of the art the world is a much more colorful place because of them.

I'm just starting out; leave me a comment or a like :)