Someone asked me an interesting question once. If I could spend time with any author, living or dead, who would I choose? There are so many storytellers I admire and whose work I enjoy, it was tough to decide on only one. Finally, though, I settled on Phyllis Whitney. My heroine, if you will, when I was younger, and I remain a huge fan. She started out writing short stories, selling well over a hundred, and wrote books for both adults as well as children. The author of more than seventy novels—thirty nine of them with a Gothic twist—she was a true pioneer in the romantic suspense genre so popular today.
She was even dubbed by The New York Times, Queen of American Gothics, a title she reportedly hated, saying instead she wrote romantic novels of suspense.
As I understand, her scheduled time to write was from eight to eleven in the morning, sitting at her desk. According to her biography, she was a diligent plotter, creating notebooks full of information about character, plot and setting before she wrote the first actual word of any manuscript.
The major accomplishment of her lifetime, in my humble opinion, was the fact she wrote continually for eighty of her one-hundred and four years. One thing I remember reading about her was she claimed to like writing, but she loved having written. That’s my kind of writer.
I remain in awe of her extraordinary talent and incredible output.
Though I haven’t even come near to achieving the eighty novel mark, my anthology, Saturday In Serendipity is a compilation of three novellas which revolve around a twentieth high school reunion in Serendipity, Vermont. Serendipity is a mid-sized town located on the shores of Lake Champlain.
Three Strikes Thursday, leaves Barry Carlson, professional baseball’s former golden boy, with some serious making up to do. A love ‘em and leave ‘em attitude of his youth has finally caught up with him. Older, maybe wiser, he’s eager to catch up on what’s important in life. A home and family, someone to love who loves him back just as deeply. Amanda Marsh is the one he foolishly pushed away. He has his work cut out for him if he hopes to ever win her back.
Two On Tuesday, has Serendipity High School graduate Blane Weston viewing her upcoming class reunion as a chance to renew a former, but not forgotten, love. As she gets ready to attend the week-end festivities, enter Matt Durand, someone she’s recently considered then rejected as a potential business partner. Turns out he won’t take no for an answer and has other ideas for her activities at the reunion. Things go from bad to worse in light of his current involvement with some of the people from her past.
One Fateful Friday, a holiday story of forever friends Jake and Bethany, takes place between Halloween and Christmas Eve, after the reunion. Soul mates through high school, Jake and Bethany went their separate ways after graduation. Brought together twenty years later while both are involved with careers in healthcare, they assume they’ll re-establish their relationship with flawless compatibility. Except, they now hold different philosophies that might jeopardize their chance at a happy future.
These three different couples with common pasts take very different passages to find their own happily ever after futures.
Purpose: To share and encourage. Writers can express doubts and concerns without fear of appearing foolish or weak. Those who have been through the fire can offer assistance and guidance. It’s a safe haven for insecure writers of all kinds!
Posting: The first Wednesday of every month is officially Insecure Writer’s Support Group day. Post your thoughts on your own blog. Talk about your doubts and the fears you have conquered. Discuss your struggles and triumphs. Offer a word of encouragement for others who are struggling. Visit others in the group and connect with your fellow writer – aim for a dozen new people each time.
Let’s rock the neurotic writing world!
Twitter hashtag is #IWSG