Why I Write Romance: Abby Gaines

One oft-repeated piece of advice to writers is “Write what you know.” And, sure, writing what you know puts your expertise on the page. But I prefer to say, “Write what you believe.” And that’s not just because I don’t know much! Writing what you believe puts conviction on the page, and with conviction comes passion. And what romance novel can’t benefit from plenty of passion?

I write romance because I believe in it. I believe everyone has a perfect “someone” out there. Not perfect-perfect (how tedious would that be?), but perfect for them. I believe love does overcome fear and weakness and prejudice and selfishness. I believe that even though our perfect someone loves us as we are, the magic of love and romance is that we become better people under their influence. And when you believe all that, writing romance is the only logical thing to do!

Check out my website at www.abbygaines.com for more information on my books.

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Comments ( 5 )
  1. Ellen Hartman
    November 5, 2010 at 12:17 pm
    Reply

    I’m with you on this one, Abby. One of the things that helps me unlock a story is figuring out what unique thing about this hero is attractive to this heroine and what makes her special to him. They’re not perfect-perfect, as you say, but perfect together.

  2. Isabel Roman
    November 5, 2010 at 3:11 pm
    Reply

    I love it! If I had to write what I knew, I’m afraid it would be a very depressing story. I prefer the writing what you believe. Because I believe in everything I read in a romance. Thanks, Abby!

  3. Kelly
    November 5, 2010 at 3:21 pm
    Reply

    Abbey
    How many books have you had published?
    Have you been rejected before?
    How long does it take you to write a book?

    Thanks Kelly

  4. Abby Gaines
    November 5, 2010 at 4:08 pm
    Reply

    Yes, Ellen, finding that unique connection between the characters is a really satisfying part of writing a romance novel.

    Isabel, I know what you mean re depressing – the older I get, the less I know, it seems!

  5. Abby Gaines
    November 5, 2010 at 4:19 pm
    Reply

    Hi Kelly,
    thanks for your questions, all good ones

    1. I have sold 16 books to Harlequin, across the Superromance and Harlequin NASCAR lines. Book 15 (One in a Million, Harlequin NASCAR) is in stores this month), so there’s still one in the pipeline.

    2. Have a I been rejected? More than I care to remember! The manuscript that became my first book, Whose Lie is It Anyway?, was the fifth one I wrote, but in fact I had nearly seven complete manuscripts written by that time, plus a completed novella. Most of those haven’t see the late of day, apart from Married by Mistake, which was published by Superromance as my second book.

    Most of those manuscripts had many rejections, by agents and by editors at Harlequin and elsewhere. By the time I sold, the sting of rejection had become something I could brush off after ten minutes rather than ten days, and I think that’s useful!

    Those rejections made me a much better writer, and when I started getting personalized feedback, I knew I could make it if I just worked hard to understand what the editors meant and to implement it.

    3. I write the first draft of my books quickly, in about a month. But they are very bad first drafts! After that it takes me a couple of months (working long-but-normal human hours) to revise it. If I work seven days a week, all hours of the day and night, I can be faster, but both I and my family prefer it when I don’t do this!)
    thanks for stopping by
    Abby

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