Like so many readers I have had dreams of writing my own books. I’ve had stories in my mind since I was a little girl. My mom gets the credit for that… she enabled my love of books. I was a lucky girl. I grew up in a home with parents that loved to read. My Dad had his Louis L’amour books, Reader’s Digests, and Nat Geo’s. And Mom had her Little House on the Prairie and stories of how she read Nancy Drew when she was younger. Mom would take me to the library. And every other week she would let me spend my $10 allowance at the local bookstore “The Little Professor” or at a nearby shopping center that sold Harlequins and other various books. Back in the day books were only $2.50 – $2.99 each and I could always get three books. And then I would wear those three books out in the two week time frame until I got my next allowance or the next trip to the library. It was reading all of these books that triggered my imagination. I remember going into the library and thinking about how amazing it is that someone had to write all of these books. And if all of these other authors could do it then maybe one day I could too.
So around the age of twelve I decided to try. I wanted to write Sweet Valley High books. Because why not? I filled spiral bound notebooks with my ideas and very poorly written dialogue. But I had the dream. Nothing ever came of these stories. I never showed them to anyone, and to be completely honest I think I destroyed most of them, embarrassed because I knew my writing wasn’t good enough. Even then I was my own worst critic.
Fast forward 17 years (10 years ago) give or take a year. I met a wonderful group of Ladies on a reader’s forum. And out of that group I formed a close bond with many, especially two very special women. We just so happened to live within an hour of each other, how lucky! It took several years before one of these two women admitted to wanting to write. We talked about it. I could tell that she was very serious about it. She had stories drafted and been taking some writing classes on the side. I thought okay, if she can do this maybe I can do it too. So I tried, and I absolutely hated my writing. Like, throw the notebook against the wall, can’t stand it, hated it. Her writing was beautiful, and still is, filled with emotion and depth. And I would look at all of the authors that I admire, people like Nalini Singh, and wish that I had that type of fluidity. Because damn, that woman has some amazing skill. So, out of frustration, I gave up.
I watched my friend’s career grow. And I was thrilled, over-the-moon, happy for her. She was working her tail off, still does, to hold a full-time job, take care of her family, and write. Holy crap, right? And here I was still dreaming. Then it hit me about two years ago… I think I may have said something to her on one of our trips… I don’t know exactly what it was, but it was like a light bulb finally clicked. I had to write my stories my way. They may not contain the beautiful writing of the authors that I admire, but that was okay. Not all stories are flowery and eloquent. There were likely thousands of texts about writing, hers and mine, and so many phone calls with our friend, who always offered encouragement, helped with plots, and listened when I needed to complain.
Two years ago I started writing seriously. I wrote so many drafts of a story that I loved but could never finish. So I took a writing course, searching for inspiration. That is when I decided to write a few chapters of a non-existent, random story to work on my dialogue and have it critiqued by a course instructor. And THAT was when Aiden and Kendall’s story broke into my mind and heart and wouldn’t let go. There is an entire series in my head now screaming, demanding to be let out. So that is what I did. I gave up on series one that I was attempting. And jumped right in… It has taken a year, but FINALLY the day is here. A day that has been twenty-seven years in the making, my very first release day.
I owe my thanks to many people for helping me get her. My parents, my husband for the nonstop encouragement, and my two best friends, Amy and Inez. I love all of you with all of my heart.