Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Voice, edginess, and a brand

I just finished J.R. Ward’s Lover Revealed. I love her books. I love her voice. She nails her characters. She’s edgy and irreverent. She doesn’t just brush against the darker side of love. She nose dives right in.

Her heroes include a reluctant and blind (literally) king, a man with a temper that rages so badly he’s monstrous (also literal), a man who spent so many years as a sex and blood slave that he’s unable to feed himself properly or even sleep on a bed, and a man who doesn’t belong and had a drug addiction and has a savior complex.

Can anyone say wounded hero?

Then she goes and …. Ah, I shouldn’t tell you. Read the books. No spoilers here.

Not only do I love her books, but I admire her, too. Get this: She has a law degree and was Chief of Staff of one of the premier academic medical centers in the nation. Now she follows her dreams of writing romances. She has a multi-multi book deal. She’s been nominated for a RITA. She’s one of many doctors, lawyers, research scientists, and academics who have retired their original career to pursue what they love. Writing. Romance. Novels.

I might just have to stalk her for an autograph at Nationals.



I like edgy writers. I have always. I think my writing is a little edgy. I’m still working on my voice, but it has to be a bit edgy. (I think.) I consumed Laurell K. Hamilton, Sherilyn Kenyon, J. K. Rowling, Michael Crichton, and James Patterson. Eclectic list. Yes. Edgy list. Oh yeah.

I’ve been reading about having a brand. I’ve got a few examples of brands to post.

CJ Lyons: No one is immune to danger. (Her books aren’t out yet, but I’ve taken one of her classes and this tag fits.)

Stella Cameron: Mystery that chills – Passion that thrills.

Jenna Mills: The heart of suspense.

I have no idea what mine might be. However, I’ve been told that you want to figure it out and then market yourself that way. Hmm.

Alyson’s might be “Sweet romance with a rough edge”. (Sweet is the wrong word, but it’s a start.) Maybe “Tender romance with a rough edge.” (Tender is wrong, too.) Perhaps, Head Over Heals Romance with a Rough Edge.

Katrina’s might be “Magic and romance. More to it than meets the eye.”

Yes, yes. I know these could be much better, but the point is that I thought those up in less than 5 minutes. I’ve been thinking about mine for several days and still have zilch.

Maybe you just need another pair of eyes to really see what you’re writing.

Hmm. Food for thought. Maybe thinking about all this extra stuff will give me some ideas for a brand.