Michele DeWinton is one of my fellow Indulgence authors at Entangled Publishing. She is fabulous author, a wonderful support for fellow authors and she gets to live in New Zealand . . . sigh. I am thrilled to have her here today.
Pushing a passionate pen – Michele de Winton
I am a writer. The statement only has four words when you lay it out flat like that. But those four words are a world and an ocean. A torment and a release. And sometimes they’re a right pain in the ass because the day off I thought I was having is ambushed by a new idea. I am not a famous writer and I’m a real newbie when it comes to romance, but I do push my pen passionately and I write over a broad range of genres.
I hadn’t dreamed of being an author growing up (unless you count that brief moment when I copied out Where the Wild Things are and tried to pass it off as my own). I was the want-to-be-a-ballerina-when-I-grow-up type. I followed that dancing dream, all the way through law school, until I left and went to teach dance in India. Yep. India. The classically trained Indian dance teacher at the school I was sent to wasn’t impressed. So I ended up strumming a guitar and teaching orphans the words to Beatles songs before I wrote a play and we performed it, with Bengali subtitles, to one hundred and one people. Approximately. Truth is sometimes stranger than fiction.
Turns out that while this white girl can dance, I can write a whole lot better and my ‘break’ came when I was looking for a location for a new dance work. I was flicking through a historical places pamphlet and found a tiny paragraph about the first lighthouse keeper in New Zealand. The first and female lighthouse keeper. How cool. Her story got hold of me, was joined by two other characters and turned itself into a novel. Coupled with the modest success of that book, the support of my husband and a writing fellowship, I kept at it. Writing is the one thing that just seems to ‘fit’ with me. And that suits me fine. I love it.
Living in New Zealand however I’m pretty realistic about what it takes to make a living as a writer. Now I write nonfiction for a variety of clients, still keep up my literary work as well as writing for kids, and of course am diving into the awesome world of romance. Writing full time is a dream really.
Getting into romance was a case of right time, right place. Entangled Publishing had just started seeking submissions for their new Indulgence line. An e-book category series that has turned out some stunning best sellers already —most notably The Marriage Bargain. If it hadn’t been for my background as a writer in other genres, I’m not sure they would have taken me on, as my book The Boss and Her Billionaire, was undoubtedly full of holes. But they did and my happy dancing hasn’t stopped as the book continues to do relatively well.
I guess then the moral of my story is that you don’t know where inspiration will spring from, or from what meagre beginnings your writing star will start shining. But you can keep pushing a passionate pen. You can float your dreams out on paper and let your characters dance with them. You can let the colour of some dark forest haunt your words or the light of morning warm them. And even if you don’t want anyone else to see them, those words will be all yours. Full of poise and personality and passion, you will have created something that no one else has. And you will have made the world just a tiny bit better because of it. Isn’t that fantastic.
If I had any advice for my as yet unpublished self it would be boiled down to four things:
- Write. The discipline to get up every day and make yourself get onto the page even for a short time is the thing that will likely be the difference between you getting published and not. And of course if you only talk about writing your book rather than actually doing it the words won’t ever get on the page.
- Edit. Don’t send off the first draft of anything, short story, play, novel. Even if it is a piece of genius. Let it sit, just for a couple of days if that’s all you’ve got and then re-read. You’ll likely pick up something that could do with tweaking.
- Create a team. I’ve been part of a writing group for the last few years and they are the only people who see my first drafts. Having an objective eye look over your work is invaluable.
- Read. Everything.
But what do you think? I’d love to hear the other sideways routes people have taken into writing. Or the paths they are still walking. Do you still find pushing the pen a driving source of passion?
Thanks so much for having me,
Michele asks some great questions – share your answers or ask any questions you might have.
Tomorrow – we welcome author Gerri Brouseau
The Boss and Her Billionaire
Cruise director Michaela Western has everything she wants—everything except a sex life. But there are no secrets on cruise ships. She risked her job once for a dalliance with the Captain, and won’t do it again for a few minutes of toe-curling pleasure. Until a devilishly handsome new staffer with a body made for sin tempts her to walk on the wild side…
Investment billionaire Dylan Johns always gets what he wants. He is used to giving orders—not taking them—until he’s forced to go on hiatus from his investment company. To bide his time and carry out an old dream, he takes a job on a cruise ship—and ends up taking orders from his gorgeous, but uptight, new boss. He is determined to loosen her up with a fun onboard romance, but their no-strings fling turns serious and Dylan is forced to confess his lies.
When the affair threatens to shatter Michaela’s own career dreams, she finds herself caught between the devil and the deep blue sea.
The Boss and Her Billionaire is available now from
and Barnes and Noble http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/the-boss-and-her-billionaire-michele-de-winton/1112120207
Michele de Winton loves sunshine, chardonnay, (preferably together), beaches, trees, great vegetarian food, steamy writing and happy endings. She’s been known to be an all round arty type and it’s no wonder that her first romance has a little sparkle of the stage tucked into its pages. Being a writer was not was she was supposed to be when she ‘grew up’ but then neither was being a dancer. Sometimes her performing past jumps out of the dress up box and requires attention. But most of the time she’s content to stay in her PJs. All day. And she also thinks that chocolate can solve pretty much everything. Her debut romance The Boss and Her Billionaire hit the top 100 Bestsellers on Barnes and Noble in its first week and continues to do well. You can get in touch with her at
Drop her a line or post a comment on her blog through http://www.micheledewinton.com
- Weekly Lecture Schedule for August 20-24
- “A Night of Southern Comfort” Release Party Giveaway Winners!
- Release Party for A Night of Southern Comfort by Robin Covington! – Giveaways!
- Mills & Boon New Voices – What’s Next?
- Historical Romance Part 2: Hot? Not?