15 April 2009

I'm Delilah K. Stephans and I'm an addict

My name is Delilah K. Stephans and I’m an addict – but I have no desire to beat my addiction. I’m not addicted to alcohol or drugs or sex – well maybe sex as in hot romance novel sex. No, I’m addicted to creating worlds and characters then sharing them. I’m a writer. That’s what I do. I love the “What if…” that every story begins with. I love watching the words fly onto the page – it’s a high for me. I love that moment when the thought crystallizes into the perfect phrase and I even love helping other authors find the phrase.

Did you know that Johanna Lindsey started her writing career because she thought she could write a better book than she was reading? Or that Sherrilyn Kenyon wrote her first book at age 8? In the second grade I used to write stories on the backs of my test papers. Writers must write. It’s an itch that is always there, even when we convince ourselves that being published is impossible.

Why shouldn’t we convince ourselves of that? The world is full of naysayers that are more than willing to tell you that it’s impossible. I used to believe them! Not anymore. I know better and will let you in on the secret.

The secret to getting a publishing contract – Write it, Polish it, and submit it. You may get rejected. Harry Potter was rejected 9 times! Madeline L’Engles A Wrinkle in Time was rejected 26 times. The Diary of Anne Frank was rejected 16 times. Margaret Mitchell’s Gone With the Wind was rejected 26 times. So, don’t let one rejection stop you. Keep trying. Take online courses to improve your skills. Join critique groups. Find a writing partner that will kick you in the butt and not allow you to do one bit less than your best.

The only person who can give up on your dreams is you. I know I had given up on mine – until last year when a friend said “If you don’t submit this – I’m going to kick your ass.” Thanks Mickey! And thanks Antonia Tiranth for being my biggest cheerleader! So I did. Now I’m waiting for my release date.

Writing may never make me wealthy – but that’s ok. Working hasn’t . At least now, I’m enjoying what I do. Believe me – doing something you love and struggling is 1000 times better than doing something you hate and being comfortable.

Oh that book that Mickey convinced me to submit? Sarah’s Story: Time Displacement Corps Book 1 – coming soon from Red Rose Publishing. (That is such a cool thing to say!) http://redrosepublishing.com/bookstore/product_info.php?products_id=462

And I’ll leave you with an excerpt:

“Why did you grab me like that?” My father always said that the best defense was a good offense. Honestly, I hoped he’d jump up and throw a typical male snit fit, anything to keep my mind off wondering what he’d look like out of that uniform. The man didn’t answer me immediately, only stood and dusted the back of his pants off. It was then I noticed the two soldiers behind him with rifles, one pointed at me and the other behind me and to the left. Sam! No wonder he hadn’t leapt to my defense.

Oh shit! My temper and loathing of being grabbed had landed me in hot water—again.

Screw hot water. Think boiling Sarah, boiling.

Luckily, it seemed I had an angel standing next to me, because the man motioned to the soldiers behind him and the rifles lowered. My knees went weak with relief and I fought to remain standing as I brought my racing heartbeat back under control.

“Madam, I apologize for grabbing you so suddenly.” His voice, a sexy baritone rumble set my hormones humming. Then he smiled.

Brad Pitt, George Clooney, and Johnny Depp might make the girls swoon in the future but they hadn’t seen this man! Jeez, I was in trouble. As furious as I had been about him grabbing me, a new emotion raced through me now. Desire.

Damn him for smiling.

Breathe, Sarah. Breathe.


Nerine said...

I know what you mean about writing being an itch that needs to be scratched. My main motivation is to write the kind of stories I'd like to read.

housemouse88 said...

Congrats on your first release. Keep writing for us readers. Have a great day.

Obe said...

Congrats on the release! Yes writers write cause they are forced too. Often its the handsome man with command of the sword or brandishing the pistol. Oh yes, you are so right. Great job, absolutely fabulous post..

Debra Kayn said...

Last night I was working on a rewrite. I sat with my elbow on the desk, my head in my hand, and wondered how the heck I was going to make a sentence that made sense of what I wanted to say. Finally, after writing it over and over again...it hit me. I typed it out, read it, and darned if I didn't have one of those moments. In one tiny simple sentence I stated the most profound thing...it was exactly what I wanted to say. You are right...there is something inside me that has to write.

Great post, and congratulations on your coming soon book. :-)

Betty Ann Harris said...

It's so true what you said about not letting rejection make you give up your dream of becoming published. It's hard to be rejected, but you have to learn from it, and in the long run I think it makes us better writers.

Loved the excerpt!

Alexis Morgan said...


You're so on the mark about writers being driven to write. It's what makes us happy and complete. I love hanging out with the characters in my head--and with the friends I've made in the writing community.

Here's one of my favorite quotes on writing: Good writing is thinking made visible. (Bill Wheeler)

So congratulations on your upcoming release--can't wait!

Alexis Morgan

Caron said...

I looked over on the coming soon page and you are there! It must be so cool to anticipate and then see result of something you love. You know I couldn't be happier for you! And, thank you for all the encouragment!

Bonnie Edwards said...

You're so right about writers writing. And even more right about not giving up.

If you quit, you won't succeed...that's the only guarantee in writing for publication, you know. The only guarantee!

Lovely excerpt...congrats on the release. It's always so exciting!


nightsmusic said...

It's about time!! :) I know, you thought this day would never come. But it has, and it's well deserved. I'm really glad you stuck it out.

Oh...and Delilah? Wipe that *blush* off your cheeks and smile. :P

Great excerpt and post. Writing is an addiction I'll nurture, thanks.

Stephanie said...

Nerine - I'm glad the itch analogy worked for you.

Roberta - thank you - and I plan on keeping writing.

Obe - It's kind of hard to ignore those characters that show up and start talking.

Debra - I LOVE when that happens! It is so nice to see exactly what you wanted to say come out in words... and so hard to do.

BA - Definitely! If I'd given up because everyone told me it was an impossible dream I'd never have met some wonderful friends.

Alexis & Betty - You two are such heroes of mine. Your support and encouragment have meant the world to me.

Caron - Thanks!

NM - I'm getting over the blushing.

Tami said...

Your book rocks the boat girlie! I am so proud of you for writing it and getting a contract! I just love the inspiration you give me.

Shirin Dubbin said...

I loved the line "Writing may never make me wealthy – but that’s ok. Working hasn’t. At least now, I’m enjoying what I do." So true. We write because we must!

Oh and you picked two my favorite romance writers and that made me smile. Johanna Lindsey was my gateway drug into romance and Sherrilyn Kenyon showed me romance and paranormal make a fabulous brew.

Great post!

M-square said...

Should I admit that my motives were just a little self-serving when I nagged you about getting Sarah's Story published? A book that good deserves to be told, and I wanted to share it with others - legally *giggle*