Why I Quit Writing the Happily Ever After

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My readers know that all my books end in an HEA. You see, I’m not just a writer. First, I’m an avid reader. Therefore, I write books that I would like to read. I suppose you could say I’m selfish. I don’t take into account what the market is doing or what I think other people want. I write what I want. Often I say that I write the story that is speaking loudest in my mind. This method has worked well for me. I rarely suffer from writer’s block and I enjoy every minute of writing my stories (well, almost every minute).

Before I self published, I felt like all I did was write for others. For years I was trying desperately to get traditionally published, so I racked my brain constantly coming up with stories that I felt would attract the attention of editors and agents. The problem was that I rarely felt connected to these stories. Once I started writing for me, I wrote the stories that spoke to me, the ones I felt connected to. And I think my writing is so much better for it.

However, I know this can sometimes be a risk. It’s clear from my sales numbers that my readers prefer my sweet romances. So it stands to reason that I should stick to writing books like TRIPPING ME UP, THE SUMMER WE FELL and WINNING ME OVER.  But sometimes I like to write darker, more suspenseful romances. Sometimes that’s the story that wakes me up in the middle of the night, the one that consumes my thoughts and pesters me day in and day out. And that’s why I wrote BREAK FREE and BREAK THROUGH, which are still my two favorites.

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That’s also what happened with CUTS RUN DEEP. The idea came to me even before writing THE SUMMER WE FELL, but I really wanted to write a lighthearted summer romance so I did. But afterward, I was dying to jump into CUTS RUN DEEP. However, I was nervous about it. This book isn’t like my others. For starters, it doesn’t end in an HEA.

crdteaserSecond, it doesn’t portray healthy relationships. If you read my post last week called Bike Ride Musings, you know that I like to write about true love, about good guys and about healthy, loving relationships. This is an exception to that. I can’t give away the reasons why because that would reveal too much about the story. But trust me, the story wouldn’t work any other way. And I had to be true to the story and the characters. I had to write it the way it was told to me.

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This book is beautiful and heartbreaking. It’s so different from my other stuff, but I love it. And I hope you will too. So give it a shot. Maybe you’ll find that you don’t need the HEA.

But if you do, I have plenty of other books for you. And I promise to write an HEA in my next book….

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