LoveCats DownUnder are delighted to welcome the wonderfully talented Lilian Darcy to our Legends segment today.
1/ Please tell us a little about your journey to first getting published?
In two words, short and clueless. The very first romance I wrote was accepted by Mills & Boon in
81 category romances, 3 women’s fiction novels, 2 on-line serials, so I’m going to say 86.
3/ The world of publishing is ever evolving, how have you stayed on top of trends and continued to give your readers what they want?
By caring about what I do and focusing on what I love. You can’t please everybody, so I think you just have to write stories and characters that you find gripping and engaging yourself, and hope that enough readers feel the same way.
Receiving two Rita nominations in two different categories in 2003 was pretty cool. Also, embracing the brave new world of self-publishing has been very exciting. I obtained the rights to my Mira Australia novel “Cafe du Jour” and re-published that, and since then have also published another women’s fiction novel “All Dressed Up” and a historical women’s fiction novel, “Saving Gerda.”
5/ Which of your books is your favourite, and why?
That’s a hard one. “Cafe du Jour” and “Saving Gerda” are both very much books of the heart. One reader email or positive review for these books will make my whole day. Of my more recent romances, “A Marriage Worth Fighting For” is one I’ve especially loved, as it’s such an unusual story, with a heroine who doesn’t sound all that likeable on the face of it. How often do you have a romance heroine who admits to herself that she married her husband for his money? I love that readers have seen beyond this to what Alicia is really like, because I adore her.
6/ Are you a plotter or a panster?
A horrible, messy mix of the two. I dive right in, then realise I don’t know where the story is going and plot for a bit, then write again and the story goes off in a way I didn’t plan so then I have to revise my ideas on where it was heading, etc, etc.
7/ What’s the one piece of advice you would give aspiring authors?
Pay attention to your process. Understand it, nurture it, track what you need to do to make it work at its best. Don’t neglect it, and don’t neglect to re-fill the creative well, or you will burn out sometime down the road and have no idea what to do about it.
8/ What do you love most about being a romance author?
Making a living on the stories in my head is a real privilege. It has it’s downside, but the freedom and flexibility, the celebration of creativity, the thrill of knowing that I’m reaching and touching readers. The other huge plus is the friendships with other writers - gorgeous, funny, warm, fabulous women.
Lilian's most recent release is “Saving Gerda” available through www.backlistebooks.com
Thank you Lilian for visiting LoveCats today and sharing your wonderful journey . . .