Wednesday, September 22, 2010

New Voices - entered!

Well, I did it! My entry is up: Secrets & Speed Dating.

I would love to hear what you think!

Writing at the beach in Croatia
Thank goodness that's done :) It was written over the past week, while I've been in Vela Luka, Croatia. However, it turned out to be a little frustrating to write. My first version, I liked. After writing the first 2000 words, I happily emailed it to my amazing crit partners, confident that I was on the right track. I kept on typing, and by the time I heard back from them the next day, I had a good 3500 words down. For me - Captain Slow Writer - this was super sonic speed!

Sadly, what I'd written was crap. This took me a few hours to digest, as I'd been told in the nicest possible way :) But basically I'd lost my voice, it just wasn't "me".

Where had I gone wrong? I think the problem was I was trying to write what I thought Mills & Boon wanted. I think I figured that with the changes from Sweet/Romance to Cherish and Riva, that I was more a Cherish writer, so I need something a bit gentler than my normal style. Clearly, this was a stupid mistake - I'm not capable of this style, and my chapter featured a neurotic, unlikeable heroine and a plot that was going nowhere.

So, I started again. I was able to salvage much of the first scene, but the rest - thrown out. Almost 3000 words! And only three days to go before the deadline!

But, I managed it. I know it isn't perfect, but it's me. It is in my voice. So if it crashes and burns in the competition, and least I've got that.

At the beach with my own hero :)
Due to lack of consistent Internet (I need to buy it in 24 hour blocks) I've been lurking a bit on the New Voices web site, but there are some very impressive entries there. Including the work of some of my favourite bloggers! Here are their excellent entries:

Sorry if I've missed anyone!

Also, I must mention how sad I was to lose all of my (possibly overused) italics when I pasted in my entry. Poor italics :)


  1. Hello - I just read your entry, fab my dear! I had to LOL at your speed dating opening cause mine opens at one too, albiet a v different set up. Good Lock, hope you go through to round 2!

  2. Hey Leah! Glad to have you on board the New Voices Entrants Boat, thank you for the shout out.
    Have read and commented over on NV - love it!
    You have a sparkly unique voice, wishing you lots and lots of luck.
    At least you've managed to avoid the two weeks of sick-bag inducing ratings by going in towards the end - a wise move, I tell ya! It's a nightmare!

    Hols look fab - very jealous if that sunshine. x

  3. Yay Leah!! Although I think you are too harsh to yourself - i quite liked your original version :)
    Nice pics too. x

  4. Haha - Janette, I know!! I've read yours too (fab!), but fortunately they are totally different. Phew!

    Joanne - For once my terminal disorganisation paid off! I don't envy you two weeks of this, after only a few hours I'm over it :)

    Rach - Thank you :) It's all so hard, I tie myself up in knots second guessing myself! But I am happier with my final entry. Thanks for all your help xx

  5. Congratulations Leah, read your chapter and gave you lots of roses, well done!

  6. Leah, your chapter was awesome! Such a great opening line! Very jealous. :-) Anyway, thanks for the mention - you're fabulous!
    BTW, isn't Croatia beautiful? I was there years ago. We went to Korcula and Dubrovnik. So cool.

  7. Wow gorgeous pictures! I mourned the loss of the italics too! Oh wow I just double checked my comment turned up on your NV and Nikki Logan's commented! Congrats Leah!

  8. Thanks Susan, Jackie and Lacey!

    Jackie - I adore Croatia! My mum's family is Croatian but I've never been before. We were staying in Vela Luka, which is on the opposite side of Korcula island to Korcula Town. We went to some amazing pebble beaches, but it felt like drove down a side of a cliff to get to them! We also went to Split, will go to Dubrovnik next time, I've heard some amazing things.