How I got started and other helpful tips
There are many ways an aspiring writer can make it into print and I believe every writing credit helps build a career. Be game. Be creative. Be brave.
The first year I joined Romance Writers, a new publisher came to the conference and asked writers for erotic stories for their anthologies. Fired with enthusiasm, although I had never written a sex scene, I sent in my first erotic story Sweet Vengeance. The editor bought it and asked for more, so I sent Astral Ecstasy and the editor bought that too. I don’t know why I had to be good at writing about sex but it’s not something I’m going to complain about, not with so many publishers looking for hot stories.
This unusual success propelled me to write an erotic partial for Black Lace, Virgin Publishing, London, which was then the largest publisher of women’s erotic fiction in the world. They took on three new authors that year and I was one of them. The editor contracted me on a partial and I quickly had to write an eighty thousand word novel full of sex and make it interesting. My book Man Hunt became the best selling erotic book on the Virgin Publishing website in 2006. It is currently selling in England, Australia and America. The more I tell people that they might be offended by the explicit and unusual sex scenes, the faster they go out and buy the book.
I love reading women’s magazines and always fantasized about writing for them. I started by sending in pitches to the magazines I loved but none of them sold, but I didn’t give up. That’s the main lesson a writer has to learn. Never give up.
I’ve found if a writer scratches the surface, people are always doing amazing things that make good stories. I often hear about funny confessional style sex stories from my friends, so I wrote some up and sold them to various magazines. Mind you, I did change details to protect the guilty!
I found that once a writer gets something accepted by an editor it is easier to sell more work.
This success led to editors ringing me and asking would I write stories for products. For example, I was asked to write a story about a new cream that gives women continuous orgasms. Naturally, I rang the manufacturer and asked for a sample. It is important when writing to do ones research. I couldn’t write about a product like that without trying it. Well that’s my story and I’m sticking to it.
I also think it is easier to get published if you are prepared to try to write for the new publishing lines where the editors are actively seeking authors. It helps to go to conferences, meet editors and introduce yourself.
One publishing credit often leads to another, but it is important to get used to rejections to. Learn to get over it and to keep trying. Not everything sells, but for me, there is nothing more exciting than when you get that call from an editor.
Mind you, I haven’t got my hands on that new cream yet.