Happy Thursday, RU Crew! I’m excited to welcome author Julie Rowe to Romance University. Julie’s been a wonderful, supportive friend to the university, and we’re ecstatic to be one of her blog tour stops for ICE BOUND.
Please help me give Julie a warm, RU welcome!
Romance is a big genre with a large audience. A long list of subgenres have sprung up to satisfy the many millions of romance readers and their demand for more and more stories, but medical romance is a hard sell…to some.
Harlequin Mills & Boon has been publishing medical romances for over 60 years. Yep, that’s no typo – 60 years. In the late 1950’s, Harlequin Romance began publishing Mills & Boon titles, Doctor-Nurse romances. But while popular in Europe, Asia, Australia and New Zealand, medical romances are difficult to market in North America. The North American audience is used to fast-paced medical thrillers. I decided to target those readers with my medical romance ICEBOUND. I set ICEBOUND in Antarctica to give my characters a huge physical challenge in addition to their emotional conflicts.
I queried agents for months. The most common response I received was, “I don’t know how to sell this.” The setting was too exotic. The story was a romance first with medical elements in a supporting role, and not a thriller. In an effort to write a romance targeting the thriller audience, I wrote a book no one knew what to do with, with no clearly defined market.
When Carina Press opened its doors, my friend and mentor Dianne Drake suggested I submit it there. I received a revise and resubmit letter from one of their editors, urging me to take the story in a new direction, one I hadn’t thought of. I was intrigued and went to work. The result was a story I truly enjoyed and believed in, and sent it off to Carina Press. Three months later Executive Editor Angela James called with an offer to publish.
Medical romance is a hard sell. Authors must walk a fine line between too much information and not enough. The medicine should never overshadow the romance. It should be a stage used to showcase your characters, their emotions, conflicts and goals.
Examples of authors who write really good medical romance are: Dianne Drake, Lynn Marshall, Laura Iding, Wendy S. Marcus and Jessica Mathews. Check them out, you won’t be disappointed.
* * *
RU Readers, have you ever read a medical romance? Have you read any of the authors Julie mentioned? If so, what did you love about them?
Please stop back tomorrow for Christine Hollis’s 5 Smooth Steps to Publication.
* * *
Julie Rowe’s first career as a medical lab technologist in Canada took her to the North West Territories and northern Alberta, where she still resides. She loves to include medical details in her romance novels, but admits she’ll never be able to write about all her medical experiences because, “No one would believe them!” A double Golden Heart finalist 2006, Julie’s writing has appeared in several magazines such as Today’s Parent, Reader’s Digest (Canada), and Canadian Living. She currently facilitates communication workshops for her local city college. Julie enjoys hearing from her readers. You can reach her at www.julieroweauthor.com or on Twitter @julieroweauthor.
- Weekly Lecture Schedule for November 14-18, 2011
- Medical Speak for Writers by Wynter Daniels
- And the hunt begins…
- The Road to an Agent with Adrienne Giordano
- Reader Reviews and What Not To Do, by Wendy S. Marcus