As I went through the process of updating this blog and adding book pages, I found myself thinking about my back list and why I wrote the books I wrote. I used to have a feature I call “Behind the Book,” (which are now posted on the book page) which tells about my adventures in writing each book, but these don’t delve into the “why this book.”
It is possible that no one cares but me. O.O
When I got the idea for Pig in a Park (which was later renamed The Spy Who Kissed Me), I just wanted to write A book. I had written some short stories and articles, but had yet to finish a novel. There are some milestones that tell you that you’re progressing with your writing. Finishing is one of those milestones. Even crappy books are hard to finish. Seriously, it’s a WHOLE book. Pages and pages of words. Thousands of letters and symbols.
So yeah, we give ourselves a high five for that first finish.
For me, Pig in a Park was my first high five. Thankfully it was more than just a stagger across the finish line. I had a great time writing Pig. At the time I wrote it, I didn’t know about all the “rules” I was breaking with such glee. Yes, I staggered across the finish line and fell on my face in exhaustion, but then I rolled over and laughed out loud. (This was before LOL.)
Because I could. Because no one told me I couldn’t. (I later met all those people and I still think they were wrong. Grin)
Other things you may not know about my Pig:
- I wrote it in first person because I didn’t know it Wasn’t Done Anymore. It was also 5oo typed pages. Also not done. (Later edited down to more manageable length, then some of it added back in when I re-released it in 2011.)
- I wrote it while the first Gulf War was appearing daily on TV (1992-ish). This was NEW.
- At the time, I was ambivalent about computers and used to switch back and forth between writing by hand, on the typewriter, and on the computer.
- One day, I typed for so many hours that the tips of my fingers went numb.
- I got my first agent because of this book. And my second.
- At the time I started marketing it romantic-suspsense-women-in-jeopardy-etc books were considered DOA by New York. Especially if they were funny. Multi-genre was a dirty word in publishing back then because it made a book hard to market.
- My Pig was the first digital-only book to be nominated for an RT Book Reviews (then it was called Romantic Times) Reviewers Choice Award. It was nominated with six NYT bestselling authors. It also received a Dorothy Parker Award of Excellence.
- It was released for the first time in 1998 and has “traveled” through four publishers before being released as an indie by myself in August of 2013. Which makes the book officially 15 years old in publishing years and 20 years in writing years.
- Pig in a Park was renamed to The Spy Who Kissed Me because my first print publisher thought the title wasn’t romantic enough.
- Pig in a Park was produced in audio back in 2000 and was very popular on cassette tape in truck stops. I even have some copies of it on cassette. O.O As The Spy Who Kissed Me it released again (with a new narrator) in audio last December. I have no idea how it is doing in truck stops this time. It’s a different world.
So there you are. More story behind the story. Possibly more than you wanted to know. If you’re still with me, is there anything else you’d like to know about my somewhat whacky first novel? Ask and I will try to answer. Do you have a first novel story? Readers, what was first book you read that you didn’t want to let go? Comments are both loved AND entered into my monthly drawing for an AnaBanana gift basket. It will help you smell yummy while you’re reading. Winner is announced the first blog post of the new month.
Pauline has now finished 13 novels and is trying to finish #14, just in case. Her latest new release is a short story called “Family Treed: The Big Uneasy 1.5.” It is the next installment in her new romantic suspense series The Big Uneasy. It can be read alone, but your enjoyment will be increased by reading Relatively Risky: The Big Uneasy Book 1. I wouldn’t kid you about this. For more information about all her novels and short stories, visit her website or check the books link here on this blog.