Thursday, September 6, 2012

Guest Post from Kate McGuiness, Author of "Terminal Ambition"

Remember the book promotion/giveaway I posted yesterday?  Check out this fantastic post from the author of Terminal Ambition by Kate McGuiness.

I’m delighted that Ruth asked me to write a guest blog. It’s great to be in the company of readers who enjoy romance. I’m a big fan of the genre.  Terminal Ambition had a much larger romantic subplot when it was first considered by traditional publishers.
The title of the novel then was Remaining Silent. The common thread in the rejections it received was that book sellers like Barnes & Noble wouldn’t know where to shelve it. Did it belong with romances or with legal thrillers?
I took that as a challenge and decided to write a traditional romance. The genre was very familiar to me. I still have many of the “keepers” I’ve read (and re-read) over the years. I can’t imagine parting with LaVyrle Spencer’s Separate Beds, Sandra Brown’s Above and Beyond or Judith McNaught’s Paradise.
Once I decided to write a romance, I was determined to do it correctly. That meant research. Dangerous Men and Adventurous Women, a collection of essays edited by Jayne Ann Krentz, was incredibly helpful.
Perhaps too helpful. When I submitted Riding for a Fall, my cowboy romance, to Harlequin, it was rejected as having too many of the genre’s conventions. 
I decided it was time to return to the “book of my heart” − the story of a woman lawyer fighting sexual harassment and discrimination. It was also time to embark on a serious study of the craft of writing. I took a number of invaluable classes at UCLA Extension.
Remaining Silent has been through countless revisions and titles since then. Now I think of it as the Neanderthal ancestor ofTerminal Ambition. Maggie Mahoney’s name and essential character survived. Sam Forte kept his name but he’s a bit tamer – less of a rake than Rhett Butler.
Readers have asked if Maggie and Sam will get together. They’ll have to read the sequel Erotic Capital to find out!


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