Tuesday, July 19, 2011

MGOC Contributor: Crystal B. Bright

Crystal B. Bright

EXCERPT from "Write from the Heart" by Crystal B. Bright in Many Genres, One Craft: Lessons in Writing Popular Fiction


That was the very first word I had heard when I shared my dream about becoming an author. Because I wanted to be a part of the writing profession, it was difficult to wrap my brain around the fact that it wouldn’t be easy to get published, and, worse yet, a publisher may not want my stories.

However, I learned that everyone, including publishers, has an agenda. Those agendas are based on what they see as a clear pattern of success.

As an undergraduate, I met with my academic advisor to discuss my educational future. It was my job to convey to her where I saw my future, as a multi-published author, selling my romances to a legion of fans. It was my academic advisor’s job to make sure that I would have a career after college. So when she asked me what I wanted to do when I "grow up" and I told her I wanted to write books, it shouldn’t have shocked me when she immediately said, "That’s nice. Now what will you do for money?"


A self-professed nerd, Crystal B. Bright has been telling stories for as long as she can remember. Not one to give up on her dreams, she was determined to make it as an author after earning her B.A. in Creative Writing from Old Dominion University and her M.A. in Writing Popular Fiction from Seton Hill University. Crystal makes Virginia Beach her home. She enjoys writing, reading, watching movies and spending quality time with her family and close friends. To know more, please visit her website at www.CrystalBrightWriter.com.

MGOC Contributor News: Michael Bracken 's 96 Month Milestone

With publication of "Sparks Fly on Independence Day" in the July 2011 True Confessions, Many Genres, One Craft contributor Michael Bracken now has had one (or more!) short stories published each month for 96 consecutive months!

Congratulations, Michael on your incredible achievement.

posted by heidi

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

MGOC Contributor: Tess Gerritsen

Tess Gerritsen

EXCERPT from "Readers Resent Change" by Tess Gerritsen in Many Genres, One Craft: Lessons in Writing Popular Fiction

Back when I was writing medical thrillers, the genre was still hot. Robin Cook was the brand name in the genre, and he was always near the top of the bestseller lists. My first bestseller, Harvest, was released in 1996, near the height of the genre’s popularity, and I first tasted literary success as a medical thriller author.

But a few years later, I sensed that the genre was fading. A number of medical thrillers by other authors had failed in the marketplace. My own sales weren’t growing. And I myself was getting bored with the same old “good-doctor-caught -in-evil-circumstances” plots. So I wrote a hybrid novel, combining medical themes with a crime thriller: The Surgeon. It introduced detective Jane Rizzoli, and launched my crime thriller series.


Internationally bestselling author Tess Gerritsen took an unusual route to a writing career. A graduate of Stanford University, Tess went on to medical school at the University of California, San Francisco, where she was awarded her M.D.

While on maternity leave from her work as a physician, she began to write fiction. In 1987, her first novel was published. Call After Midnight, a romantic thriller, was followed by eight more romantic suspense novels. She also wrote a screenplay, "Adrift," which aired as a 1993 CBS Movie of the Week starring Kate Jackson.

Tess's first medical thriller, Harvest, was released in hardcover in 1996, and it marked her debut on the New York Times bestseller list. Her suspense novels since then have been: Life Support (1997), Bloodstream (1998), Gravity (1999), The Surgeon (2001), The Apprentice (2002), The Sinner (2003), Body Double (2004), Vanish (2005), The Mephisto Club (2006), The Bone Garden (2007), The Keepsake (2008) and Ice Cold (2010; UK title: The Killing Place.) Her books have been translated into 37 languages, and more than 20 million copies have been sold around the world.

Her books have been top-5 bestsellers in the United States and abroad. She has received the Nero Wolfe Award (for Vanish) and the Rita Award (for The Surgeon) and was a finalist for the Edgar award (for Vanish.)

Her series of novels featuring homicide detective Jane Rizzoli and medical examiner Maura Isles inspired the hit TNT television series "Rizzoli & Isles," starring Angie Harmon and Sasha Alexander.

Now retired from medicine, she writes full time. She lives in Maine.

Sunday, July 3, 2011

MGOC Contributor: John DeChancie

John DeChancie

EXCERPT from "I Write Genre Fiction But Want to Be a Real Writer Someday" by John DeChancie in Many Genres, One Craft: Lessons in Writing Popular Fiction

One day, while flensing a whale, I was interrupted by a phone call from one of my editors at a prominent New York publishing house. He was calling to discuss my next book, owed under contract. Feeling my oats (or should I say blubber?) that day, I limned the contours of a grand new novel I had in mind. Let's call it Gone with the Winds of War and Peace, a saga of love and revolution set against a sweeping historical background, guaranteed to be a blockbuster, and gave my editor a précis of the storyline in the proverbial twenty-five words or less.

His response? Well, he liked the idea, but had reservations, namely, that he could not give me the kind of advance this kind of book would demand—"floor bids" at auction, "pre-empts," that sort of thing—in other words and in short, he had not the budget to spend on what this best seller would fetch on the market—a whale of a lot of money, presumably, under the right circumstances.


John DeChancie is the author of over two dozen books, most of them in the science fiction/fantasy genre. He is best known for his Starrigger trilogy and for the eight-book fantasy series beginning with Castle Perilous. He lives and works in Los Angeles.