Posted by Marie Lavender
This month’s issue of my author newsletter just went out last night. Here is the full link. Don’t miss the exciting news! ♥
Here’s a guest post that I had to include below because the owner of the blog decided to shut her site down this year.
A Labor of Love
by Marie Lavender
It all started with my love of literature. I recall my mother reading me bedtime stories. I got so lost in those fictional worlds that I didn’t want to find a way out.
My own stories began to formulate in my head whenever I’d play with dolls as a child. As soon as I learned to write, I finally had an outlet. They found their way onto the page. Throughout my childhood, I knew I wanted to be an author. As I grew a little older, I’d stalk the reference section of the library, finding how-to books on writing, as well as writer’s market books, exhibiting lists of publishers I could submit my work to.
This was my dream. I pursued it steadily, did anything I could to accomplish that aim – I kept writing, entered young writer’s contests, I familiarized myself with the industry as well as possible, and took creative writing classes whenever they were available.
In college, I made a goal of finally finishing a novel. In 2002, I had the idea for a historical romance book, which would be set in France. Of course, I didn’t know it would take nearly nine years of organization, writing and perfecting to complete the novel. I was aware of the growing popularity of self-publishing. With this one, however, I wanted to find a traditional publisher.
Still, I was reluctant to let the trend pass me by. I selected some works-in-progress and set to completing them. Between the years of 2010 and 2012, I’d released twelve books in various genres. Yet I maintained my dream of getting published traditionally.
After numerous rejections I finally found a home when Solstice Publishing offered me a book contract for Upon Your Return, book one of the Heiresses in Love Series. In February of 2013, the novel was released. Since then, I’ve submitted six other novels and stories to the same publisher, and they’ve accepted every one. I now have four series published, and many others planned for the future.
Just before UYR was published, however, I quickly realized I’d have to jump on the ‘public presence’ bandwagon. I began to develop my social media accounts. I wrote guest posts for book blogs or writing blogs. I learned how to participate in author interviews, radio spots, author timeslots during Facebook events, placed book ads whenever necessary, and, well…I also launched two blogs (which actually became three later on). I struggled with them at first (i.e. What did I have to say, to offer?). But I eventually figured it all out. By the time Upon Your Return was published for a while, I had official book reviews on blogs as well as sites where the book was sold.
Now? I know I’m never finished learning about this industry, but I can say I’ve made quite a bit of progress. With 5,000 friends on Facebook, 1400 followers on my profile and 2500 likes on my author page, over 3500 Google+ followers and almost 15,000 Twitter followers, I haven’t done too bad.
Additionally, I’ve evolved from a romance author to a true multi-genre author, covering literary fiction, poetry, various types of romance, mystery/thriller, fantasy, science fiction, to wherever this crazy muse will take me. I no longer try to box myself in.
I am also proud to call the Heiresses in Love Series completed, as the final book, Upon Your Love, a full-length historical romance/family saga, comes out on February 28th. The series has been nearly fifteen years in the making, and it quickly became an empire of Victorian maritime drama, suspense and passion. I couldn’t be happier that the series pleasantly surprised me with its twists in development, all the characters coming alive on the page. I am beyond grateful to the wonderful people at Solstice for giving me a chance. I look forward to many more years with them, as they’ve taken me under their wing, and helped me to soar on my own. With my two books coming out soon, that makes a total of 25 published books to date.
And the muse, as always, is tireless, a true blessing for a writer. I just love writing, learning all about my characters, and experiencing their stories.
It’s been quite a journey, and I wouldn’t have changed a thing.
About Marie LavenderMulti-genre author of Victorian maritime romance/family saga, Heiresses in Love, and 18 other books. Reached the Top 10 Authors list on AuthorsDB.com for the last 4 years. Listed as one of TOP 5 Authors Who Write Compelling Romance on Wiki Ezvid. The I Love Romance Blog was listed as one of the Top Novel and Books blogs 2020 on Sparpedia. BLUE VISION made the TOP 10 on the Science Fiction and Fantasy category of the 2019 P&E Readers' Poll, and also reached TOP 10 status in the Romance category. Featured interview in the January 2018 issue of Womelle Magazine. BLOOD INSTINCTS reached TOP 10 status in the Romance category of the 2018 P&E Readers' Poll. DIRECTIONS OF THE HEART reached the semi-finalist round in the 2018 AuthorsDB Book Cover Contest. Voted TOP BLOGGER for 2018 on the Romance Lives Forever Blog. TOP 20 Authors of 2018 on Amy’s Bookshelf Reviews blog. DIRECTIONS OF THE HEART was nominated and made it past the first round in the 2018 Author Academy Awards. UPON YOUR LOVE and THE MISSING PIECE placed in the TOP 10 on the 2017 P&E Readers' Poll. DIRECTIONS OF THE HEART was nominated for the 2017 Reader's Choice Awards. The I Love Romance Blog became a finalist in StartDating DK's Romance Blog Awards of 2017. ILRB landed on Feedspot’s 2017 TOP 100 Novel Blogs and TOP 100 Romance Blogs. DIRECTIONS OF THE HEART placed in the TOP 10 Books of 2017 on Amy’s Bookshelf Reviews blog. TOP 20 Authors of 2017 on Amy’s Bookshelf Reviews blog. Mystery Blogger Award for 2017. A to Z Blog Challenge Survivor in 2016. March 2016 Empress of the Universe title - winner of the "Broken Heart" themed contest and the "I Love You" themed contest on Poetry Universe. SECOND CHANCE HEART and A LITTLE MAGICK placed in the TOP 10 on the 2015 P&E Readers' Poll. Nominated in the TRR Readers' Choice Awards for Winter 2015. Poetry winner of the 2015 PnPAuthors Contest. The Versatile Blogger Award for 2015. Honorable Mention in the 2014 BTS Red Carpet Book Awards. Finalist and Runner-up in the 2014 MARSocial's Author of the Year Competition. Honorable mention in the January 2014 Reader's Choice Award. Liebster Blogger Award for 2013, 2014 and 2016. 2013 and 2014 Amazon Bestseller Ranking for the first edition of UPON YOUR RETURN. Winner of the Great One Liners Contest on the Directory of Published Authors. Marie Lavender lives in the Midwest with her family and two cats. She has been writing for a little over twenty-five years. She has more works in progress than she can count on two hands. Since 2010, Marie has published 21 books in the genres of historical romance, contemporary romance, romantic suspense, paranormal romance, romantic comedy, dramatic fiction, fantasy, science fiction, mystery/thriller, literary fiction and poetry. An avid blogger on the side, she writes adult fiction, as well as occasional stories for children, and has recently started some young adult fiction. She also contributed to several anthologies. Though Marie has standalone titles on the market, her current published series are The Eternal Hearts Series, The Magick Series, The Code of Endhivar Series, The Misfits Series and The Blood at First Sight Series, but she has many others planned. Her Victorian maritime romance series is returning, and the second editions of the trilogy will be released soon. Discover more about her and her work at the following links. Universal Links: https://linktr.ee/marielavender1
Posted on January 22, 2017, in Authors, Books, Contemporary Romance, Fiction, Historical Romance, Paranormal Romance/Urban Fantasy, Readers, Romance, Romance Novels, Sci-Fi Romance, Updates, Writing and tagged author, Blood At First Sight Series, Books, Code of Endhivar Series, collection, coming soon, contemporary romance, drama, family, Fiction, Heiresses in Love Series, Marie Lavender, news, newsletter, novels, paranormal romance, projects, romantic drama, saga, sci-fi, Sci-Fi Romance, science fiction, short stories, Writing. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.
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