So Much to Choose From!

Now that The Simulacrum is finished and out making the rounds (one publisher has asked for the full manuscript. Squeee!), I find myself without a project. Or maybe with too many projects. Or just the right number–who knows? Having several ideas is a good thing, right? I usually have two going at a time, but now I wonder: Which two?

I have four manuscript ideas, a couple of which you may be familiar with. One of the first things I do when I get an idea that excites me is to find a picture for it. So, here are the general descriptions and their “covers”:

Corporate LadderCorporate Ladder

Genre: Women’s Fiction

Current word count: 14,119

Debra Chandler is on a mission to save her mother from an abusive man. She needs money. Lots of it. And she’ll do just about anything to get it. If she can climb higher on that corporate ladder, she’ll have everything she needs. Or will she?

But how much is too much? When should she stop? How?

When a noble goal becomes an all-consuming fire, Debra finds herself teetering atop a heap of ruined relationships.


Glenna Petting Wet Cats: A Glenna Galloway Mystery

Genre: Cozy Mystery

Current word count: 1808 (but that’s deceptive. This is the revival of an old manuscript I had “saved” on a disk. If I had burned it on the disk, I’d have around 30,000 words)

When Glenna finds Bessie Hampton’s skittish cat licking rain off her coat on her front porch, she has to investigate. The cat would never leave Bessie’s house–would never step a foot out the door.

Sure enough, her surrogate grandmother is missing, and the law won’t do anything about it. “No signs of a struggle here,” Sheriff Tom Brewer says.

But something is wrong, and it’s up to Glenna to figure it out. When the one person she suspects is found dead on the highway, the only clues she has left are an antique kaleidoscope and a stack of crocheted baby blankets.


Southern ChallengeSouthern Challenge (Book 1 in the Family First Series)

Genre: Contemporary Western Romance

Current Word Count: 25,622

Southern belle Kayla Mullins escapes her father’s critical eye in Georgia to come to Texas and live her dream of raising, training, and selling horses. Cutting horses, to be exact, because these work beasts are in demand by both competitors and ranchers.

But she knows virtually nothing about horses.

Enter Jared Carmichael, the best trainer in the county. His father sold Kayla a three-year-old, untrained Quarter horse.

The Carmichael’s ranch is in trouble because of a seven-year drought, and Jared has a plan to save it. But his father won’t listen. Jared makes a bet with him: If he can get the stallion ready for the big cutting horse challenge in December, his father will let him begin implementing his plan.

Now Jared has everything riding on this horse. Can he and Kayla train it in six months?

Others in the series include:

Roping Venus Book 2 in the Family First Series

Roping Venus
Book 2 in the Family First Series

Ain't No Cowgirl Book 3 in the Family First Series

Ain’t No Cowgirl
Book 3 in the Family First Series









Genre: Historical

Current Word Count: 0

Still in the research stage is a Biblical historical I don’t even have a name for. I found a picture, but the site’s watermark across the front is unmistakable: “Thou Shalt Not Steal: Exodus 20:15” Okay, I did anyway, for my own personal use and it won’t make it’s way here until I can buy it. If I can buy it. The organization has some stringent rules pertaining to its use, so I doubt I’ll get to buy it or anything similar until it becomes the actual book cover. (And, yes, I realize the irony of stealing a pic for a Biblical historical. If it matters at all, I felt guilty the whole time it was downloading.)

The idea for this came from a verse in Mark. I read it, and suddenly an entire story plot developed in my head. My computer wasn’t fired up at the time, so I scribbled out several pages for the opening scenes, and jotted a general outline for the next few chapters.

In my research, I discovered I’d made certain assumptions that were just plain wrong, so I have to go back and change those when I type my opening in the computer. But I’m still excited about this one.

The Historical genre scares me. Researching another place and time is fascinating, but people who read these regularly will ding ya if you step out of line with a word or phrase that doesn’t fit the era. What’s been fun, though, is finding that some of my ideas are actually feasible.

For an easily-overlooked verse, it has tons of follow-up in the Bible and in history, if you just know how to look for it. And I guess I do, because I can’t write my notes fast enough.

I’m playing this one close to the vest for now. I don’t know if I can pull it off–I never know if I can, but this one will be particularly difficult because I don’t write Historicals. And this one may be the last one I do, if I get to do it at all. We’ll see.

Meanwhile, I can’t decide which one I’m most excited about, so I’ve kinda been working on all of them. I have a friend who has six active manuscripts at a time and daily writes two thousand words in each. Good for him. Not sure I can do that.

So I guess we’ll know which one really grabbed my attention when I announce which one is finished and ready to hit the publication trail. Since I want at least one new release per year, we’ll look for this one in 2015. I’m hoping both The Cat Lady’s Secret and The Simulacrum release in 2014, since I was too sick in 2012 to have one out either then or now.

Sad. My last novel came out in 2011. I’m so far behind!

About Linda W. Yezak

Author/Freelance Editor/Speaker (writing and editing topics).
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10 Responses to So Much to Choose From!

  1. Linda, one important piece of advice I was given by agents that I spoke with at conference is that an author who is still relatively new to the published side of things needs to pick a genre and stay with that genre, not change from one to another to another. After you’ve established yourself and have a strong fan base you can flex a little bit.
    I first had two contemporary cozy romantic mysteries come out by one publisher, and following the release of the second of that two-book series, my historical romance from a “big-name publisher” was released. I was advised to decide which genre I wanted to write for the foreseeable future and stay with it. Did I want contemporary or historical?
    Since my current project is a three-book historical romance series, and most of my story ideas for the future are historical, the choice was relatively easy, despite a couple of my fave contemporary projects that are partially done.
    My suggestion to you is to decide now which genre you want to say with and stick with it. I figure three out of three agents can’t be wrong LOL.


    • Linda Yezak says:

      I’ve heard that too, Pam, and I’m certain it’s true. It’s one of the reasons I wanted to have a pen name for a different line of novels (actually, “Glenna Galloway” was supposed to be my pseudonym for cozy mysteries). But everyone talked me out of it. Right now, my two genres are Romance and Women’s Fiction, but I still want to play around a bit and find my niche.

      I guess that’s the fun of being with small publishers. I can try the different genres until I find one that really works for me. If ever I hit a big publisher, I’ll stick to the genre that won the prize. Well, except for one: The Simulacrum is a conspiracy thriller I co-wrote with a friend. I’d have to continue that genre with him, because I don’t think I could write it without him. He’s the idea man!


  2. joannesher says:

    Personally, I am most intrigued by Petting Wet Cats. The biblical (I LOVE Biblicals!) would probably be at the top if you weren’t keeping it “so close to the vest.” 😉 Praying for wisdom and direction for ya – would love similar prayers for yours truly 🙂


    • Linda Yezak says:

      I’m excited about the whole Glenna Galloway series. I give her the kind of job that’ll carry her anywhere and everywhere, so there’s no telling what sort of mischief she can get into! I got that little tip from a Writer’s Digest interview of Lee Child. His “Jack Reacher” character can go everywhere, which gives him a variety of settings to choose from.

      As for the historical, the idea for it would be so easy to snatch up that I’m hesitant to publish it right now, but I’m excited about it. And I’m surprised how much I’m enjoying the research. I enjoy research anyway, but this is so extensive I thought it would be overwhelming, but not so! It’s actually fun!


  3. K.M. Weiland says:

    Southern Challenge, Southern Challenge, Southern Challenge! I *loved* the first chapter you wrote for this and have been hoping you’ll get back to it. I’m currently project-less myself, and while I take a break to let my brain reboot after Storming, I’m mulling my own options. It’s a hard choice! You want to pick the one that’s not going to have you pounding your head against the keyboard in three months. :p


    • Linda Yezak says:

      At some point, they *all* have me pounding my head against the keyboard! 😀

      I do love Southern Challenge. I may end up working on all of them at once, like Michael does.

      You need to get back to work soon. Your adoring fans need you!


  4. Delia Latham says:

    You’re a busy lady! 🙂 Petting Wet Cats gets my vote.


  5. Wow. At least you have a treasure trove of ideas to choose from. It will be interesting to see which one or ones, float to the top. I guess I would chose the one I can’t keep thinking about, and then if that’s all of them, well, I guess I’d work on them all. I have several author friends who do just that. I can’t. I have to focus on one at a time. Good luck!


    • Linda Yezak says:

      I seem to be focusing on the romance and the mystery. I’m still stuck where the WF is concerned, and it’ll be awhile before I can start the historical. But it’s fun to have different ideas to juggle!


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