So many of us reinvent ourselves in the New Year, so we're asking authors who are rebranding themselves - through choice or necessity - how they go about a writerly reinvention.
As part of our special PHS Rebranding Edition, Callie Endicott is talking about adjusting to telling stories for a new imprint...
When SuperRomance announced its departure from publishing (sad news), I was pleased to learn the remaining books in my contract would be published by Harlequin Heartwarming. So far the adjustment has mostly been personal, as edits and comments are pending on my first Heartwarming manuscript and the proposal that follows. Both lines are close in length, giving the opportunity for subplots and deeper exploration of the characters.
I do know the romantic tension in Heartwarming focuses less on physical attraction. This clearly changes how a story is told and I’m still climbing the learning curve. Obviously I’ve read more Heartwarming novels as part of my research and I’m also looking forward to editorial feedback as a valuable resource.
My move to Heartwarming came in the middle of a series, Emerald City stories. The first book, Moonlight Over Seattle, is a January 2018 release by Superromance. Timing was interesting with the second book, since half of it had already been written. While the manuscript needed to be refocused midstream, it was great being able to include even more family interaction than first planned. In fact, the title of the second book will be A Father for the Twins. I don’t have a confirmed publication date, but I think it will be early summer 2018.
The original concept for my characters was placed in a small town, but the stories were re-crafted at editorial request to the city and a different business, which are good backgrounds for Superromance. A helpful author summit presentation with Heartwarming editors indicated more rural settings are particularly popular with readers, so for the last three books of the series I’m taking my characters out of the city or into family scenes as much as possible.
I actually began telling stories in oral form. In oral storytelling much is conveyed through tone of voice, pauses, and body language. It was necessary to learn how to tell a story in words only.
Some of my adjustments to a different romance line have a similar challenge. Yet it’s a creative challenge, and challenges are good. In particular, the language of attraction has changed because less emphasis is placed on the physical. In other ways the transition is easy because I love telling stories with kids and animals, which have a strong place in the Heartwarming world.
While some of the untold stories in my head won’t work with Heartwarming, new ones will be possible. I’m still exploring the social networking in this line, but I still have my own Facebook page . I love to hear from readers and look forward to hearing from the Heartwarming audience.
Callie's latest release, Moonlight Over Seattle, is out now. For more information about her and her writing follow her on Facebook.