Friday, July 10, 2009


Today I was offered a position at a company, so starting a few weeks from this Monday I will be officially employed! Yay! I can't tell you what a relief it is to be working again. As much as I enjoyed having all the time I want to read, write, and cook, there is just nothing as comforting as a solid paycheck. My husband has been very supportive throughout all this for which I'm more than grateful.

I have very little time left, I've realized, until a full-time job will take up most of my waking hours. In the brief span, I hope to get more writing done in between errands and such (i.e. dry cleaning my work clothes). Future obstacles will be time management. I hope to continue writing. I have a lot of ideas rattling up in my head. Great ideas should they ever materialize into written form. So I will, to the best of my ability, trudge on!

Whoo! Okay.

Page/Word Count:
90 pages
47,657 words

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

On the Twittering Bandwagon

SO! I finally succumbed to the broohaha over twitter and set up an account. What I am digging about it so far? #writegoal community/forum. Writers post their writing progress for the day and chat and support one another. It's nice to see short phrases of success, words of advice, quick notes on frustration all in one communal area.

From the intelligence I've gathered, it appears that the site was started by a romance author - of course!

Please follow me on twitter! @JessCoeWrites.

Page/Word Count:
89 pages
47,213 words

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

All Throughout RomanceLand

The USA Today article: Scholarly writers empower the romance genre. They didn't mention Lisa Kleypas who is a Wellesly graduate either. Who knew about Eloisa James's background. Impressive!

My own writing? Somewhat on hiatus as I had a slew of interviews the past few weeks. I started a contemporary along the way and wrote about 25 pages in one swoop. But, I've reverted back to the historical today as it's all about one project at a time.

Page/Word Count:
88 pages
46,726 words

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Boys vs Girls

A while back, I recommended a few romance novels to a friend of mine. She had never read one before, so I picked out some of my favorites. She liked a few, but she found the others difficult to get into as she found the heroine annoying either in part or in totality. It’s a valid criticism, but one that got me wondering the other day about whether or not my characters were likable or not.

When I read a romance novel, I typically do not read that much into the heroine. If the book is written well, I find the heroine likable and will enfold the heroine into the full account of the story and, of course, find the whole reading experience more fulfilling. However, if the heroine is not someone that I can associate with either because of characterization or bad writing, I can easily dismiss it. That is, of course, if the heroine is not completely obnoxious. For example, I sometimes find the horse-crazy tomboys in regency period romances a bit off putting. I have never been a tomboy nor held an affinity for horses, even My Little Pony (I know!). Silliness aside, for me if the hero is strong and the resolution between the hero and heroine believable, I am able to forgive the small annoyances along the way.

What matters to you? The boy or the girl?

For my own writing, I would like both my hero and heroine to be likable (of course!). But, I find that it is becoming a more difficult task than I thought. As the author, I should like both characters and find a way to develop their characters in a manner that would relay their likability to my audience. At the same time, every reader "reads" romances differently...some read for the romantic storyline, ideal hero, relatable heroine, hot sex scenes, etc., etc. It would be impossible to please them all...or is it?

Page/Word Count:
87 pages
46,106 words

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

It's History!

While reading some of the blogs I follow, I saw the recent blog post on History Hoydens titled "Accuracy or Intelligibility" regarding the historical accuracy of historical novels. Today, there is a similar discussion on Smart Bitches, Trashy Books. As a former graduate student, I am or can be quite a stickler for details and can find inaccuracies, particularly in the fields that I know, to be quite distracting and annoying. At the same time, I can't say that history or facts should be immobile to the flow of the story or voice. Even Thackeray did not adhere to history when writing "Vanity Fair" (check out the introduction of the penguin edition of the book for details).

For my writing, I've done my preliminary research. Though, I must admit a lot of the terms for clothing, housing, transportation, etc. do not come easily to me even with the research and years of built up knowledge based on osmosis. I'm writing the most I can and figure I will work out the details and fact checking in the revisions. If I had to check a fact every time I wrote, it would take forever to write (For example, after reading the History Hoydens' blog, I searched for the word foyer and had to replace it with a more appropriate word for the time period. Thankfully, I don't have many scenes in the foyer).

Page/Word Count:
84 pages
44,424 words

Monday, June 8, 2009


There's no other explanation for the lack of progress but laziness.

Last week, I started working out regularly again. This week, I will write regularly again. At some point in the near future, I'll be able to do both equally well and with equal dedication.

I've updated my "What I'm Reading" list. Jennifer Cruisie was a nice surprise. I've seen her books all over the place and never picked one up as I had imagined it to be a cross between chick lit and contemporary romance. And it is, but I was pleasantly surprised by her writing. The majority of her book centers on quick and funny dialogue; I can definitely take some pointers there.

Yesterday, I reread "The Name of the Wind" by Patrick Rothfuss. He's a sci/fi fantasy writer and "The Name of the Wind" is his first book, and the first book of a trilogy. The second book was supposed to come out in April, but publication was delayed until 2010. Sigh, as I'm eagerly awaiting the next book in the series. Anyway, I liken the story to a grown up, adult Harry Potter, which does neither book full justice but I can't figure out how better to describe it as I don't typically read books in this genre. Regardless, he's a fantastic storyteller and rereading "The Name of the Wind" inspired me and reminded me how completely enthralling certain writers can be.

Back to the writing for me!

Page/Word Count:
83 pages
43,553 words

Monday, June 1, 2009

For Real

It has been a very busy couple of days. I had an interview (fingers crossed!) and had to clean the apt for my friend then had the friend come and stay and now I feel just a bit recovered from such an adventurous few days.

Very little writing but read a few books while in recovery: Julia Quinn's "What Happens in London", Rachel Gibson's "True Love and Other Disasters" and Toni Blake's "One Reckless Summer". All fantastic reads, particularly the last two as they're new authors to me.

Page/Word Count:
81 pages
42,562 words