On December 14th, 2011 Irene Watson and Tyler R. Tichelaar spoke with romance author, publisher, and entrepreneur Donna Winters about writing regional historical romances. Donna Winters and her husband Fred Winters are the owners of Bigwater Publishing. Since 1989 they have released 15 of Donna’s historical romances for ages 12 and up under the Great Lakes Romances imprint. We covered a wide-range of topics from writing to marketing, including:
Historical romances vs. contemporary romances
Donna adopted Michigan as her home state in 1971 when she moved from a small town outside of Rochester, New York. She began penning novels in 1982 while working full time for an electronics firm in Grand Rapids.She resigned from her job in 1984 following a contract offer for her first book. Since then, Thomas Nelson Publishers, Zondervan Publishing House, Guideposts, and Bigwater Publishing have published her novels. Her husband, Fred, a former American History teacher, shares her enthusiasm for history. Together, they visit historical sites, restored villages, museums, and lake ports, purchasing books and reference materials for use in Donna’s research.
Donna has lived all of her life in states bordering on the Great Lakes. Her familiarity and fascination with these remarkable inland waters and her residence in the heart of Great Lakes Country in Upper Michigan, make her the perfect candidate for writing Great Lakes Romances®.
On December 5th, 2009 Irene Watson and Victor R. Volkman interviewed author and editor Debbie Herald on writing for the erotic romance marketplace. Debbie Herald is an author and Editor currently working for Lyrical Press. Her two most recent books are Perfect Game and Sweet Dreams, available from BookStrand paperback and on Amazon Kindle formats under the pseudonymn Jordana Ryan. Among questions which Debbie answered for us were
What makes a good erotic romance?
What is the difference between erotic romance and pornography?
If a writer uses naughty words does that automatically make it erotic romance?
If you write erotic romance can you branch out to difference sub genres with success?
What makes erotic romance so highly successful in epublishing?
Is there a standard for how much sex should go into an erotic romance?
As an editor what do you like to see in a sex scene?
What pushes the boundaries if anything in erotic romance?
Debbie has enjoyed the written word since she was a child and takes a specific liking to Contemporary and Historical romance. Debbie enjoys working with authors to polish their work and see it through to publication. When not writing or editing she can often be found cooking, with her friends, or with her young child doing any number of things.
On Thursday, March 6th, 2008 Irene Watson and Victor R. Volkman spoke with pioneering gay author Victor J. Banis. In his 40+ year writing career, he has learned a lot and shared with us writing techniques for audiences and how they differ between gay and straight fiction, how the writing market has changed in the past decades, advice for new writers, and amazing stories from a life in print in every genre imaginable.
Victor J. Banis is the critically acclaimed author of more than 150 published books and numerous shorter pieces, both gay and straight oriented, in almost every genre – fiction and non fiction, humor, mystery, romance, fantasy, sci-fi and even, recently, a cookbook.
On Thursday, Feb. 21st, 2008 Victor R. Volkman and Tyler Tichelaar spoke with Deborah Herald, the 31-year-old managing editor of Amira Press. She is a published author and enjoys both the process of writing and editing. Debbie shared with us the secrets of writing erotica, the huge demand and advantage of selling erotica in the e-publishing marketplace, the shades of explictness from “spicy” to “sweet” (romance), lucrative sub-genres of erotica, and how the publishing and delivery mechanism works
Although Debbie is relatively new to the writing scene, having spent most of her life working with the dually diagnosed adult and juvenile population, it is her hope that she will continue to work in the world of writing for many years to come. Debbie has been with Amira Press for a little under a year, and is thrilled to work with such a wonderful company! She also uses the pseudonymn Jordana Ryan.
On Thursday, September 6th, 2007 Victor R. Volkman and Tyler Tichelaar spoke with Syvia Hubbard. She has independently published 4 paperback books and over 10 e-books. Her foundation genre has always been romance, but she has ventured into suspense, erotic, mystery, paranormal and inter-racial. Sylvia shared with us essential aspects of the romance genre, marketing techniques for romance writers, and how to build a following of readers outside the bookstore.
Always urban and contemporary styled, her writing is enjoyed all over the world by all nationalities. In the upcoming year, she will be featured in several anthologies & will be publishing another paperback and 4 more e-books. She has a degree in Marketing/Management and minored in journalism, broadcasting (Specs Howard), drama, html programming, teaching assistant, customer service specialist, and commercial art.