Friday, January 22, 2010

Dreams, dreams, glorious dreams...

I want to write a book!

I can't remember the statistics now, but I heard once that the proportion between people who want to write a book and people who actually do is microscopically small. I looked for numbers on-line, but all I could find were advertisements for ghost writing and websites offering to show you how to write a book in 3 months. As soon as you start telling people that you are a writer (published or not) people say to you, like the cashier at Wal-Mart, "Oh, I've always wanted to write a book." I always find this odd because for me if you want to write a book, you generally end up on a journey to eventually writing one. I've never not wanted to be a writer, so it's just part of me. But this statement that comes from random people would be like me, upon meeting a doctor saying, "Oh, I've always wanted to be a doctor."

So why is writing so different? Why do we all feel as if we can all be writers simply by the act of writing? All good questions, and I'm not sure I know the answers, but I can give you my take on things. I think people assume that simply because they've been reading books their whole lives that they could put one together. I know that when I sat down and started my first book, I just started making stuff up. (which I realize is what you do with any sort of fiction, but there are times when it feels more like you're making stuff up and the rest of the time it feels as if you're telling a story – big difference) It didn't take me long to figure out, I had no idea what I was doing.

There is a great deal of talent involved with telling a good story and creating believable and memorable characters, but more than talent, there is hard work. And just as watching the Discovery Health Network doesn't prepare me to do surgery on your appendix, being a life-long reader doesn't prepare you to write a book. At least not entirely. Writing requires learning and honing just as any other profession. But once people realize this, the majority abandon their dreams of writing.

Sounds sad, but in reality, it mostly means they were just nice thoughts about wanting to be a writer, you know like, "Wouldn’t it be cool if I were a rodeo clown." But most people don't actually become rodeo clowns. Not to disrespect any rodeo clowns who might be reading this blog. But when it comes down to it, you have to want this so badly that you'll put up with a lot to achieve it. No different than my husband working his tail off to earn his Ph.D – hard work and perseverance.

But for those of you who haven't walked away, who have been bit by the writing bug and can't seem to shake the little critter loose, I say to you... Don't give up. Don't be afraid to want it all. Don't be afraid to reach for the stars. (Que: Disney music) Excuse my sappiness, but it's true. And frankly, it's really better advice for the non-writers out there. Chances are if you're on this journey, at whatever stage, you're a big dreamer. And I don't mean that in the, "If you actually think Johnny Depp is going to leave his wife for you…keep dreaming, sister!" I mean simply that, for whatever reason, being a writer seems as attainable to you as being an attorney or a school teacher. It might not always feel like this on the outside, but on the inside, it's all there. And the majority of people are not like this. Which is sad.

Case in point. One of the things that surprised me the most when I first sold was the reactions of non-writers. They were simply astounded that I'd had a dream and actually worked it into reality. They would say, "Wow, you've always wanted it and you just worked hard until you got there." Up until this point, I'd never really considered any other way. I guess I just had good parents because being an author never seemed like an unreachable goal. There were times along the journey where I was uncertain of whether or not I would succeed. I even quit twice (for one day each), but it never occurred to me that this was about dreaming big. It never occurred to me that wanting to be an author was like wanting to be the lead singer of a rock band. To me, that sounds far-fetched, yet some people achieve it because we do, in fact, have rock bands.

(The other thing that surprised me, and still does, was to have someone, upon learning that I'm an author, ask, "Where can I find your books?" To which I always want to give them a snarky reply. Seriously, where do you buy your books? But that's neither here nor there.)

Okay, now I'm just rambling. Blame it on the fact that I've been up since 4:15am and can't seem to go back to sleep. I just love mornings like this! In any case, I hope this makes some sense.

So what are your big dreams? (and did you see that beautiful cover at the top of the post? isn't it so pretty?)

Thursday, January 14, 2010

New Girl, Checking In...

Hi, everyone! My name is Cynthia Eden, and I'm the new girl. :-)

I currently write paranormal romances for Kensington Brava, but this August, I'll be taking the leap into romantic suspense with Grand Central Publishing. And--look! I've got my first romantic suspense cover! (Love it, btw.)


I'm used to writing about monsters--the creatures that can haunt our nightmares. But, for this book, the monster isn't a vampire or a demon. He's a serial killer. And, for me, it's those real-life monsters--those bad guys who *could* live down the street from you--well, those are the truly scary ones.

In DEADLY FEAR, my villain uses fear to torture his prey. He makes them face their worst fears, and they usually don't survive that face-off.

Do you have any deep, dark fears? Or perhaps some not-so-dark fears? Tell me about them. I'll pick one commenter to win an Cynthia Eden book of her/his choice.

And, in case you were curious about DEADLY FEAR, here's the blurb for the book:

TWO BRILLIANT AGENTS

FBI Special Agent Monica Davenport has made a career out of profiling serial killers. But getting inside the twisted minds of the cruel and the sadistic has taken its toll: She’s walled herself off from the world. Yet Monica can’t ignore fellow agent Luke Dante, the only man who ever broke through her defenses.

ONE DREAM TEAM

Luke has the unique ability to put victims at ease…professionally, he and Monica made a perfect team. Now they’re reunited to catch a murderer who uses his victims’ deepest, darkest fears for sport - but their investigative skills aren’t enough. Luke and Monica will have to face the secrets from their past, the ones that terrify them the most, if they are to have a future together.

But can they catch a killer whose weapon is…DEADLY FEAR

***

Happy Reading!


Cynthia Eden

www.cynthiaeden.com

ETERNAL HUNTER--available now from Kensington Brava