Today’s readers have so many books at their fingertips, whether you enjoy holding a print book in your hands or love the convenience of storing your library on an e-reader. Books can arrive on your e-reader so quickly, you wonder why you ever left the house to pick up a new book by your favorite author. Or, if you’re like me, I enjoy walking into a store and browsing through the rows of books, soaking in the atmosphere while enjoying the scent of brewing coffee.
As an author trying to keep up with the industry, one of the trends I’ve noticed are book collections. A reader can purchase a collection by a single author, perhaps part of a series, so all the books are together in one package. Then there are the collections by multiple authors, usually with a theme of some sort. These are a great deal and a way to find new authors. I’m a contributor in a new Christmas collection, which I’ll get to in a moment, but my point is, the options for readers are limitless.
Now, some back story about the new collection.
Last year at the RWA conference, I was fortunate to meet fellow authors from the Harlequin Heartwarming line. Heartwarming books are sweet romance stories, a growing genre under the romance umbrella. Not only did I get to socialize with these women, I established new friendships. When you spend so much time alone at the keyboard, it’s such a pleasure to have a network of woman to turn to during the writing process. And we do, by keeping up with each through email loops, joining each other through social media for release parties or announcements of new releases.
While catching up at dinner was a lot of fun, we also get together for the business of writing. Some of the authors gathered for the Harlequin Spotlight on the Heartwarming line. We talked about the line with other interested authors and encouraged those who wanted to write for the line. Afterward, some of us meet to discuss the Heartwarming Authors blog, talking about ways to make it better. When you hear authors talk about the bond between writers, the openness to work together and help each other, it’s all true. I experienced it firsthand. Before I knew it, the weekend had come to an end and I flew home, energized and ready to get started on new projects.
Fast forward about six months. Harlequin had released a Christmas anthology the previous fall for the Heartwarming line, titled Christmas Actually. The three authors enjoyed Christmas Town, Maine so much, they wanted to revisit the charming town with fellow authors. And so, A Heartwarming Christmas collection came to be. What an honor to work with such talented authors. And who doesn’t love a Christmas story?
This is an exciting time to be a writer. The opportunities are out there if you’re willing to work at your craft and write, write, write. If it’s in your heart to be an author, pursue your dream. If you’re as lucky as me, you’ll get to work with some lovely ladies who all have one thing in common, giving our readers a heartwarming romance they’ll remember long after closing the pages of our books.
There are four connected anthologies in A Heartwarming Christmas, 12 novellas sharing characters and story lines! This collection of PG-rated holiday romances are all set in Christmas Town, a location introduced in the 2014 Harlequin Heartwarming release Christmas, Actually. A Heartwarming Christmas will bring you laughter, tears, and happily-ever-after.
Foreword by small town lover and New York Times bestseller Kristan Higgins.
We will be hosting a Facebook party on August 26 and would love for you to stop by. You can check my Facebook page, Tara Randel Books, for details.
Tara Randel is the author of nine books, her most recent releases, Honeysuckle Bride and Magnolia Bride available from Harlequin Heartwarming. She is currently working on new books for the Business of Weddings series for Heartwarming, as well as a new mystery series. You can view her booklist at her website, http://www.tararandel.com or just stop by, pay a visit and leave a message.