Writing Tip #1: Write What You Like

Hot Romances were beginning to establish new authors and selling a whole lot of books when I decided to try writing seriously.  I went to a meeting of women writers.  This group was very excited about the new romance categories.  This was a great way to break-in to publishing.  I could do this, I told myself.  I bought several of these new, sexy romances and started reading.  When I got to the steamy parts I laughed out loud.  Making love on a running horse???  In a hot air balloon??  It was pretty obvious I wasn’t the person for whom they were writing.  And if I wasn’t part of the audience why would I think I could write one?  

I thought a lot about what I liked to read.  I read a lot of books in a variety of genres, but what I enjoyed most were children’s books.  I’d been an elementary teacher.  I’d started a preschool.  Children’s literature and how children learn to read was a large part of my Master’s Degree.  So I started a middle grade novel about a girl who moves from the bustling city of St. Louis to a remote ranch in New Mexico in the 1930s.

I think each of the women who met that day wrote and sold at least one romance novel.  I read theirs and admired the writing.  That group eventually became SouthWest Writers and encompassed all genres.  The group is alive and well in Albuquerque.  I never sold my ranch story, but writing it felt good.  It was my place to start.  I’ve had nine books published, all for kids.  I’ve written two books for adults from true stories.

Before you write what’s hot, popular, in the news, think about how the writing makes you feel.  Choose what you love.




About Penny

Penny Durant is the award-winning author of CHILD OF EL SALVADOR, narrative nonfiction set in the late 1980s in civil war-torn El Salvador and New Mexico. She has also published nine childrens books, and is a frequent workshop provider, novel writing teacher, editor, and critiquer. She has written two adult novels, "true life stories." Two of her pieces have been put to music by composer Michael Mauldin and performed in the region.
This entry was posted in Writing tips. Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *