Marcia’s Romantically Yours
Issue # 28
marcia king-gamble

Can you believe it’s May already and we’re on the brink of summer? Time does fly and not only when you’re having fun.

Speaking of which, I’m using the next couple of weeks to relax and unwind. It’s been a pretty hectic time for me. After peddling like crazy, I’ve finally finished the fourth book in the Flamingo Beach series. Sex on Flamingo Beach is scheduled to be released in November 2007. You aren’t going to believe how much the town of Flamingo Beach has changed, and all in a few years.

Currently the third in the Flamingo Beach series is in your neighborhood bookstore. If you haven’t already, be sure to pick up a copy of Down and Out in Flamingo Beach, and join in celebrating the centennial of this beautiful beachfront community.


On June 3rd, I will be attending one of my favorite events; Book Exposition America. See for more details. This literary happening is being held in New York at the Jacob Javits Convention Center. Stop by the Harlequin booth on Sunday, June 3rd at 11.00 a.m. where I’ll be co-hosting the Kimani hour, and signing Down and Out in Flamingo Beach. What’s even nicer are that the books are free. It’s a fun opportunity to meet some of your favorite authors.

Now back to business. This month’s exciting author interview is with Ingrid Weaver. Ingrid launches book number one of Harlequin’s Mediterranean Nights Series. Yours truly closes the series with book number twelve. Ingrid’s book is titled From Russia, With Love. If you like mixing it up, and enjoy both romance and suspense, this is one book you shouldn’t miss. I haven’t been able to put it down. I’ll let Ingrid tell you all about From Russia, With Love. Her inspiring interview is below.

Happy writing and have an even happier spring!

Romantically Yours,

Marcia King-Gamble
Editor -- Romantically Yours

p.s. Chat with me on May 30, 2007 at 9.00 p.m. Log onto


Tools of the Trade

Last month’s topic was self promotion. Continuing in that same vein, this month we talk about putting together your own book tour. Want to know how to go about it? Read below.

Once you’ve written that book in your heart you should have a game plan. That game plan should be to market the heck out of that book. Don’t depend on your publisher to do it for you because unless you’re a big name author, it just might not happen.

Keeping that in mind, an author, especially a newbie, would do well to plan his/her own book tour. You might choose to go to places where you already know people but I advocate venturing out of your comfort zone. Use the tour as an opportunity to build your bookseller and reader data bases.

Booksellers can be your biggest allies because they hand sell books. Take the time to make a connection with these personal ‘sales reps;’ the end result can only be positive. Your efforts should go way beyond just sending out postcards. Putting yourself out there gets even better results. Stop into a bookstore, smile, introduce yourself and pump a hand. Transits at airports are another good opportunity to widen your bookselling circle. You’re passing through so visit and leave a business card, bookmark, or newsletter behind.

Once your tour is all set maximize your exposure by planning speaking engagements, book signings, and media interviews. If you’re a member of Romance Writers of America you might try emailing the local chapter presidents for recommendations about romance friendly bookstores, media etc.

Use the Internet to your advantage to research bookstores, local newspapers, radio stations etc. In addition to book signings don’t discount the power of the cold call. It’s a great opportunity to sign any stock (books) of yours the store might have at hand while at the same time making the booksellers acquaintance. One added bonus is that you might get better shelf positioning.

Putting together a tour sends a message to your editor that you are all for investing in your future. Booksellers remember authors who have been gracious and friendly. They’ll do everything in their power to hand sell your book.

Better sales translate to better contracts and that’s what this business is about. So go to it and good luck!





May 31- June 03, 2007

    Book Exposition America
    Jacob Javits Convention Center
    655 W. 34th St.
    NY. NY. 10005

July 11-14, 2007

September 20-23, 2007

September 28-30, 2007

    Moonlight and Magnolias Conference
    Location: Hilton Atlanta Northeast
    Keynote: Linda Howard
    To register visit:

October 26-28, 2007

    Emerald City Writers’ Conference
    Bellevue Hilton
    Bellevue, WA
    Keynote: Jayne Ann Krentz AKA Amanda Quick



Award winning novelist of romantic suspense books, Ingrid Weaver is our featured author this month. Ingrid is a Canadian author who lives on a farm. This talented mother of three is an ex math and history teacher who now writes full time. Log onto her website for more about this prolific author.

Interview with Ingrid Weaver


Would you describe yourself as a writer of Romantic Suspense? If so what is it about the romantic suspense genre that appeals to you?


Strange as it may seem, two of my favorite authors are Lavyrle Spencer and Clive Cussler, so with a contrast like that, it's only natural that I'd gravitate toward writing romantic suspense. I believe in the "show, don't tell" rule of storytelling, and nothing reveals character quite so readily as placing protagonists in life or death situations. How they react to a crisis not only shows their characters, it shows their true feelings and gives them the opportunity to earn a happy ending through their choices.


Your first published book; a 1994 release was titled True Blue was that also a romantic suspense? What inspired you to write that story?


Yes, TRUE BLUE was a Silhouette Intimate Moments romantic suspense. In the opening scene, the heroine is watching a video of Dirty Harry, and it was the moral ambiguities of Clint Eastwood's title character in the movie that inspired my story. The hero of TRUE BLUE is a tough ex-con who, like Harry Callahan, bends the letter of the law but still does the morally right thing.


It’s a great honor to launch Harlequin’s Mediterranean Series continuity. Book one (your book) is titled From Russia with Love. Tell us a little about it.


David and Marina, the hero and heroine in FROM RUSSIA, WITH LOVE, both want custody of Marina's orphaned nephew, Stefan. But the car crash that killed Stefan's parents wasn't an accident as everyone believes, it was a hit by the Russian mob. While David and Marina spend their Mediterranean cruise debating who would make the best parent for Stefan, the hitman has tracked Stefan to the ship and plans to finish the job. This was another one of those stories where I used impending danger to reveal the true feelings of my characters, and I'm very excited about how it turned out!


Is this your first continuity? Please describe what a continuity is for the reader. What would you say is the most challenging aspect of this type of series?


Continuities are a number of books (often 12) that are stand-alone stories linked by a common plot thread and continuing characters. Because the overall plot is developed over such a large canvas, it can get fairly complicated, which means a mind-boggling number of details for the authors to keep straight. Mediterranean Nights is the sixth continuity that I've participated in, and each one has been a challenge. I inevitably reach a point where I grumble that I'm swearing continuities off forever, but I keep doing more for one simple reason: working on a project with so many talented, creative people generates its own unique energy. Ideas spark other ideas, making the stories richer than they would have been on their own. It's a wonderful experience in what is otherwise a solitary profession.


Speaking of series? Have you written other series that are not part of a continuity? If not would you like to?


I've written two series of linked stories for Intimate Moments. The one in 2003 was Eagle Squadron, three books that featured a team of Delta Force soldiers. Another series in 2005 was Payback, which revolved around former criminals who were given the chance to redeem themselves by righting a wrong. Writing trilogies allowed me to develop larger concepts than I could with one book, and I enjoyed being able to bring characters from one story to the next - it was like visiting with old friends.


How many books do you typically write a year? How many books would you be comfortable writing annually? How many would you say an author needs to write a year to earn a decent living?


I prefer to spend around five months on a book - it's not a straight line kind of progress, since the first three chapters usually take as much time for me as the remaining thirteen or so. The occasions when I managed to write three books in one year were pretty draining, so I like to limit it to one or two. Of the twenty-three books I've written so far, not one has earned the same amount as another so it would be hard to fix on the number of titles needed per year to attain a particular income level. The more relevant number is the size of the backlist, since with a publisher like Harlequin that pursues foreign markets and reissues books, those old titles continue to earn for years.


When did the writing bug bite and how difficult was it to make your first sale?


I began writing in 1989, when my youngest child was in school full time. I decided I'd like a job I could do at home, and I liked to read, so how hard could it be to write a book? Uh-huh. At the time, I hadn't yet heard of Romance Writers of America, which might have been a good thing or I would have realized what a competitive field I had chosen. Instead, I bought a copy of THE WRITER'S MARKET, learned through that about romance publishers, query letters and manuscript format, and then simply started writing. Blissfully ignorant of the odds and in total isolation from any other authors, I wrote one manuscript after another and just kept sending them to publishers. After four years, eight rejected manuscripts and three worn-out manual typewriters I finally made my first sale to Silhouette.


As a Canadian author growing up in a mining town, did that have an effect on the kinds of stories you felt compelled to write about? What about now. Does the remoteness of farm life influence your writing?


To clear up the confusion, I am indeed Canadian but I didn't grow up in a mining town, I was born and raised in Peterborough, a picturesque community in an agricultural and cottage/tourism region near Toronto. I lived in a northern Quebec mining town with my husband for a while, but now we're back in the South (for Canada, that is.) Where I've lived has definitely influenced my writing, since I like to use characters who have a small town feel to them, down-to-earth people with strong ethics and an independent streak. Being out in the country now is a mixed blessing - it's quiet, less stressful than the city, with fewer distractions, but somehow there's always so much to do.


On your website you mention having a degree in English yet you taught high school math and history. Would you then say you’re both right and left brained (the right brain being the creative side)?


Absolutely. I've always enjoyed numbers. In math an answer is either right or wrong, unlike in literature where every answer is open to interpretation. Of course, it's that wide open, anything-is-possible aspect that makes creating stories so satisfying, but my analytical side comes in handy when I work through plot tangles.


I noticed you Blog. How difficult is it to keep up with blogging? Do you blog every day or just when you feel you have something worthwhile to say? Has blogging been a successful marketing tool for you?


I seldom venture onto the Internet, so I take a casual approach to blogging, posting something new on my website only when the mood moves me. It's mostly just mind-dump trivia, which likely provides some scary insights into how my brain works. So whether or not that's a good thing... I'm not sure.


What words of advice would you like to share with those attempting to get published?


Focus. The only way to become a writer, to find your own particular voice, is to write. That means write through the rejections, the criticisms and the crises of your real life. And though writing groups can offer great advice, remember that if your goal is to get published, in the end the only opinion that counts is that of an acquiring editor.


Finally, what’s next for Ingrid Weaver? Do you have a big book in you, or a big idea that you want to develop?


I've been writing big ideas all along, they're just in small packages.



Who’s Acquiring

Kensington Publishing:


Erotic romances and very sexually explicit. Acquiring contemporary, historical, futuristic, paranormal, multicultural etc.

Novels - Approx 80,000 words
Novellas – Approx 20,000- 30,000

Send to: Audrey LeFehr, Hilary Sares, John Scognamiglia

John Scognamiglia is also looking for romantic suspense, paranormal, urban fantasy. Word count 80,000.

African American and Women’s fiction submissions should be sent to Selena James.

New Publisher:

Update on Agencies

Artists Literary Group
27 West 20th Street
10th Floor
New York, NY. 10011

Agents accepting Romance Fiction Queries:
Joe Veltre
Diane Bartoli

Bradford Literary Agency
10353 San Diego Mission Road
Suite 333
San Diego, CA 92108
619 521-1201

Laura Bradford

Crichton & Associates, Inc.
6940 Carroll Avenue
Takoma Park, MD 20912
Phone: (301) 495-9663
Fax: (202) 318-0050

Sha-shana Crichton

Imprint Agency, Inc. 5 West 101st, St, Suite 8-B NY. NY. 10025

Stephany Evans


Did you know?

Series romance is on the upswing. Harlequin reports an increase in sales over their 2005 numbers. Now that’s good for me and you.

Put your heart in a book and continue writing.


Romantically Yours is a FREE monthly newsletter. I would love to hear from you. Please send comments, news, research, or story ideas directly to Marcia King-Gamble at