[Leave a comment for a chance to win a copy! winner to be selected on Sunday, Nov. 4]
As I mentioned the other day, I’m starting a brand new series called “Delectable” at Dreamspinner Press focusing on characters in the food and wine world, and using some of my own experience working in the wine industry for seven years.
The first book in the series will be a novella about an ice cream maker called “Brand New Flavor,” due to be released November 21, the day before the biggest foodfest of the year: Thanksgiving.
When artisan ice cream maker Jericho Brown first meets food writer Cameron Clay at a charity tasting event, they get along like strawberries and chocolate sauce. Jay’s unique flavors thrill more than Cameron’s jaded palate, but after a delicious encounter in Jay’s delivery truck, where extra-creamy frozen treats are not the only delights sampled, Cameron loses Jay’s contact info—and any hope of a real date.
Desperate, Cameron convinces his editor to host an artisanal ice cream contest in hopes of drawing out the elusive genius. But more complications threaten to intervene. Will Jay even enter the contest? Or will the chance of a happily ever after melt away?
This story took quite a long time to make it to being published. It was the very first story I wrote for a specific publisher call for submissions a few years back. It was right after I got my first story and novel contracted and before either had been published. I was really excited to get two contracts on my first two subs, and decided to send my next story to a really big publisher. I spotted the call for subs on their website and wrote my story and sent it off, expecting them to love it as much as I did.
Well, I got a big surprise when they rejected it because they said the liked the story but it didn’t fit for them. I then recruited about a dozen beta readers to help me “fix” it, including a very strict reviewer, but they all said they really liked the story. I was confused. I just dropped the idea of publishing it and posted a free version online instead.
Then one of the beta readers asked whether it was going to be published and it got me thinking again.
What I hadn’t realized was that some publishers (back then, at least) wanted more sex scenes than non-sex scenes. The story just had too much plot and romance for their preferences. It took learning a lot more about the publishing business to realize that there was nothing wrong with the story, I had just tried the wrong publisher. So, I took a new look at it, rewrote about half and layered some of the characters and plot a bit more, with the benefit of a few more years of writing and publishing experience behind me.
And now “Brand New Flavor” is back in a slightly different incarnation, but a much better story than the first time around.
I’ll be posting more about the research for this story and an excerpt in an upcoming post.
Word Counts - Today: 0 | October: 7,000 | 2012: 119,800