Here’s where the promises come in. When I wrote The Guardian’s Heart it was supposed to be a short story for an anthology. I over shot the maximum word count by over thirty-five thousand words. When began writing The Guardian’s Heart I didn’t plot out for a series, if I would have Sarah would not have been a lesbian. I might have just left her out all together. Although she’s integral to the story line and now I couldn’t imagine not having her as part of group stepping out of a comfort zone is scary. And writing an f/f book is out of my comfort zone, but at one time writing in third person was out of my comfort zone, but as a writer taking chances and stretching my writing muscles only makes me stronger.
Part of the reason book two took so long to write was because once I wrote Mary Beth’s book I committed myself to writing Sarah and Mandy’s. I wasn’t going to start something I couldn’t finish with the same zeal I did The Guardian’s Heart. People helped me brain storm with some encouraging me while others made suggestions to either not have a Sarah story at all, she does have a loving girlfriend in book one. Or have Sarah end up with a man because she was “going through a phase.”
Here comes promise number two and three really, I wasn’t going to insult my audience that way. Sarah is one of the four owners and part of the best friend group that has been lovingly nicknamed the Growing Strong Mafia. To not have her story would be a slap in the face to my readers. And the second suggestion again is an insult to my readers. I recently read a book in a series where the character was a gay man until it was time for his love story then suddenly “he’d been faking”. Sure the author spun a pretty good tale about why and his love of a woman, but if it wasn’t for the fact I had a long drive and no more Audible credits I may not have finished the book because it was like a spit in my face as a reader.
What scared me you may ask? The love story I wasn’t worried about it was just the lifestyle in general. I hate stereotypes and every subculture has their own way of being. This is where my trepidation came in. Can I accurately portray a lifestyle I don’t live? Other writers can kill people, create horrific beasts or even write about things they don’t live. There are very few writers that are also on death row because they know how to murder someone in cold blood so I guess the answer is yes.
When you start writing it’s all about ‘writing what you know’ then you can expand. I’m a great researcher, heck my Bachelors is in History, but the last thing I would ever want to do in my books is to portray a character unrealistically. Then I bit the bullet because when it came down to it I write love stories. Those stories are about two people that usually have to over come an obstacle to make their love work. That I could do, the other stuff, it like Sarah and Karen’s love, will work itself out and I promise you I will not waiver on the quality or zeal for which I write.