So today, many of us romance writers will be registering for the 2015 RWA® Nationals conference being held in July in New York City. Even though it’s only February, it’s a good time to begin thinking about what I want to achieve before then and what steps I need to line up to make it happen.
The “steps” part of my plan will come next week, but first, I need to identify what I want to do.
The biggest goal I have is to complete Three Proposals in its entirety and send it to the agents/editors who asked for it last summer BEFORE I get to RWA®. Well before I get there. By Memorial Day at least. I’m close. I have to do the final clean-up on it, work on a high-concept idea, tweak my synopsis, put together queries, and send them out.
My next goal is to get a head-start on Isabelle’s story (Susannah’s sister). This means a decent plot outline and/or synopsis, a high-concept idea, and ideally the first two or three scenes (or more).
Lastly, I want the plan/high concept for Susannah’s other family members (blood relatives and those by marriage), including her missing brother (gasp! Didn’t know about him, didja?). They are:
- Sir Guy Tradwick (Nate’s spy friend) – I already know the high concept for this story and have started writing parts of it (mostly as an exploratory exercise than stuff I’ll actually use in the book)
- Sean (Susannah’s Scottish cousin) – he’s relatively new to the scene. As with Guy, I have the high-concept idea for his story and I know the basic plot, but not much else.
- Jeanne, Juliana, and Jessica (Nate’s triplet sisters) – I love writing these girls. They’re different, yet the same, all special and smart in their own way. For these ladies, I’ve actually planned a Christmas story (but I’m keeping quiet on the details). I know Jeanne’s story for sure. The other girls, not so much. These ladies will each be featured in a novella-length story.
- Susannah’s not-dead brother (who didn’t exist before the 8 Lady Writer’s Retreat) – he’s the blank page right now. I always wanted Susannah to have a brother, but I couldn’t figure out how to make it work in her story without running into conflicts over who her guardian was. Then some plotting with Jilly at our retreat led to some great ideas about where he could come from and how he got where he was. And yes, Susannah’s uncle had a hand in all of it.
- The basic story conflict behind Susannah’s great uncles — four brothers who are forced to take sides…two become Revolutionaries in colonial America, two become Loyalists, who eventually return to their mother country. Obviously, this will be a departure from my Regencies (I’ve always loved Revolutionary America).
So, my next task (after I register for Nationals, haha) is to begin working on a timeline for all of this. My priority is Three Proposals. I’ll have to figure out what’s next in order of importance after that.
Are you planning to attend a national conference? Which one? What are you doing to prepare?