Welcome to Day 10 of the Romancing September Across The World Blog Tour. The question I put out to all of these authors was “What challenges do you face in writing romance in today’s society?”
Don’t forget to go over to Rosie Amber’s page and check out her page too. I’ll put the link at the bottom of this post.
Today my guest author is Annie Acorn and I want to thank her for blogging with me today. Here is a little about Annie and her book A Man For Susan.
What Challenges do you face writing romance in today’s society?
What an interesting question! From my perspective, the biggest challenge isn’t in the writing of the romance. I imagine writing a quality romance that will spark a readers’ imagination is much the same today as it was for Jane Austen or Georgette Heyer – two of the early greats. One could make a case that there are more subgenres today, ranging from sweet to erotic, but once you’ve identified your genre, then all you have to do as an author is stay true to your choice and your readers’ expectations. Oh, and write a really great story!
The real challenge for romance writers today is the marketing. Major outlets for romances such as Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Kobo and iTunes vary widely in the categories they offer to indies and publishers such as Annie Acorn Publishing LLC. This can mean that while you as an author are secure in how you would categorize your work, it may prove to be difficult to denote this to possible readers as they search for your masterpiece on these venues’ websites.
Two other marketing challenges are also making it much harder to achieve real success with a romance, particularly a stand alone volume as opposed to a sequential work in a series.
The first is the sheer number of romances that are now available in the marketplace. Here’s an example, when I published my cozy mystery Chocolate Can Kill, if you searched under Nook books/mysteries/women’s sleuths on the Barnes and Noble website, you would have found approximately 190 pages of volumes from which to choose. When A Man for Susan was published as a romance just a little over a year later, a similar search would have provided a possible reader with over 1200 pages of volumes from which to choose. The pages for Chocolate Can Kill had risen to 236. The mystery genre is not tiny, but the romance genre is HUGE!
The second is the advent of free books for ereaders. I have several friends who read romances almost exclusively. They have individually shared with me that my Captain’s Point Stories romances are the ONLY ONES they have paid for since the advent of free offerings, and they did so only because they knew me personally. True, they tell me, these free books often include erotica they don’t want, bad edits, poor storylines and fewer total pages, but they are willing to sort through the chaff to reach the wheat when the books are free.
As an author, I am deeply concerned about the trend towards free books. Because I was eating, sleeping, indeed living in Captain’s Point in my head while writing A Man for Susan, Juliette and I were able to bring it to publication in a little over two months, thanks to her additions to the text and copyediting along as I wrote. Still, even though I was running on 3-4 hours sleep per night much of time, it took the two of us a fair amount of time working all out in multiple directions to bring a quality, full-length volume to publication.
Annie Acorn is the pseudonym of a prolific, internationally published author, whose readership recognizes her mainly for her women’s fiction, cozy mysteries and richly woven stories with a warm southern flair. She writes her romantic women’s fiction/family saga Captain’s Point series as Charlotte Kent. She is a founding member of From Women’s Pens – A Cooperative of Women Writers.
Annie is the mother of two sons, one of whom is married to the best daughter-in-law in the world. She lives in the Washington, D.C. area, where she has done extensive technical writing as a contractor.
She owned a tri-state medical outsourcing business for a number of years and was the Director of a behavioral healthcare firm. She once flipped a comic book and collectible retail company comprised of five stores, and she has managed cemeteries and funeral homes. She is the owner of Annie Acorn Publishing LLC.
Ms. Acorn has published in The Inspirational Writer, and she edited an in-house publication for the State of Mississippi. She is a contributor of ezine articles.
In her spare time, Ms. Acorn enjoys reading, writing mysteries, listening to classical music, playing cards, and spending time with her family and friends – often at a restaurant serving delicious food.
Annie is the author of the blog at annieacorn.com. You can friend her on Facebook and tweet her at Annie_Acorn. She will respond to your email sent to firstname.lastname@example.org.
A Man For Susan
Publication Date: June 16, 2013
The second novel in the women’s fiction series Captain’s Point Stories, A Man for Susan, written by multi-published, internationally known From Women’s Pens authors Annie Acorn and Juliette Hill under the pseudonym Charlotte Kent, offers the reader romance, humor, and adventure in a story of love and personal growth.
Newly married, Adrianna Montgomery Sheffield feels the need to pay forward the happiness she has found with her Chase, determining that her mission will be to find a man for his law partner, Susan. Recognizing her friend as a beautiful woman inside and out, Adrianna believes the task to be an easy one, but soon realizes the depths of the challenge she has set for herself. Will Susan find the strength to open her heart to the tall, dark stranger who has recently moved to their small town, allowing both of them an opportunity for healing and true love?