Ask any Olympic athlete about what they had to do to get to where they are and they'll tell you that it takes not only physical and mental endurance, but the fortitude to get there. Goal setting is a must when you're working to achieve something great and working toward those goals makes you better practiced in whatever it is that you do.
For me, the goal I set for myself several years ago was to some day co-write a book with another romance author. That sounds easy enough, right?
Well, not so much.
After two failed attempts over the years (none of which was anyone's fault but rather due to timing and circumstances), I finally found the perfect "other half" to work with. In January of this year, after I attended a Romance Author Mastermind conference in December, I set out to make the goal a reality. I had become acquainted with S.E. Rose through a Facebook group I manage and we had many mutual friends. I sent her a message one day and asked her if she had any interest in possibly co-authoring a book and if so, perhaps she'd like to chat.
We met via video chat and got to know one another, each reading the other's books to determine whether our writing styles would mesh and I think we decided after our first conversation that we wanted to give it a go. Although most of our catalog and individual backlists are in different genres, with Sarah's being more romantic suspense and romantic comedy and mine focused around sports and college, we thought we could each bring a different perspective to the table.
We began working together in early February, hashing out the details for our book. It's the first firefighter romance that either of us had written so it was a fun experience to research and write realistic settings and background. (Side note: Sarah's mom is a retired fire safety specialist and gave us some great information to use!). As both of us are primarily pantsers when we write our own books (a writing term signifying that we fly-by-the-seat-of-our-pants when we write), we did have to create a simple outline to determine where we wanted our story and characters to go.
Each of us took a character point-of-view and off we went! We ended up writing two chapters every week (one from each of us) and we successfully finished the book in May! It was such a great feeling to know we set out to accomplish a goal - much like Olympic athletes do - and we got there through commitment and dedication to our practice.
I'm so proud of our new book baby, Burned. Now that we know that we can do it and it worked out, we are already in the midst of writing book two in the small-town/firefighter/brothers series, Fanning the Flames. Book 2 (Ignited) is scheduled to release in January 2022.
I'm so excited to continue writing with Sarah and to realize one of my author goals. It may not be an Olympic sport, but I did achieve something that I set out to accomplish. And for that, I feel like I've won gold!