Social networking for romance readers
Hi, I'm Mike Moran and I've written a relationship novel set in the period 1965-72 i Sussex, an airport on the Surrey-Sussex border, London, and North-west England. Contemprary fiction it is not and I've been advised it's too recent to be regarded as historical fiction. So, what is it?
I have had parts of it(i.e the usual first three chapters, first three pages, first two chapters etc) examined by agents at the Winchester Writers Conference with varying degrees of positivity. At present I've put it on one side and will return to make the-very-necessary changes and have started on a sequel, cvering the years 1974 to 1983.
I would like some discussio about genre, as it not an area which is 'cut and dried.'
Strictly according to Genre(horrible term) it's not contemporary, set the 1990s, yet its roots lie in the war years as they have, as far as I can tell, amajor influence on the direction of the novel I think it's historical, being set pre-1961, which is what agents and publishers use as the cut-off date for that genre.
Is that any good?
It is confusing. How about this: it's set in the 1990s, which gives you liberty to say it's contemporary, as it's ony a little over a decade ago, but drawing on events, via journals, from the war years which influence the story. After all, no story can exist in a vacuum: the 'contemporary' element had to come from somewhere.
Thanks v much. How about yours - is there a book it's similar to or where the readers would like yours?
I really need to do more research on this area, but I have been busy writing the book; I'm two-thirds through the first draft and I ought to think about it.
It is a relationship novel in that two people have met but carry a lot of baggage; he is teacher in North London; she works for an airline on the Surrey-Sussex border and when the novel starts they have set up home in small Sussex town in the early 1970s, close to where he was born and they have two small children.
The story is about their relationship and the pressures they face: high inflation and interest rates; a banking crisis; urban terrorism and other, more sinister happenings, from out of their pasts and involving a person who bears a long grudge.
It might betaken as family saga, as both characters have relatives nearby but I wouldn't want push that. Nor is it really regional, as I'm toldthe setting is too close to London and the central male characterworks there.
It is love story, but at the festival of romance I was told it was too dark. There is also a political element in it(the two central characters are spied on by the security services); but it is not, of itself a spy story, since they are the innocent victims of knowing the 'wrong' people.
I'll settle for it being a love story, which it certainly is, with one of the characters killing for love, set in an era of crisis and some paranoia, that was the 1970s.
Sounds like an interesting story, can't think of what market it would be- is it aimed at men and/or women? Is it a bit like early Dick Francis which I and husb think are great? (although sounds darker) How much of the plot is taken up with the love story? Are the hero and heroine together at the end of the book- think that's what defines a love story apparently. A lot of Thrillers have a love story in them - The Godfather has a love story running through it. (one of my favourite films as love all the Italian stuff) Maybe it will all become clear when you've finished drafting it? Good luck with it. I'm just putting together my submission for agent, trying to print labels etc - going to send off tomorrow. Hope you have a good Sunday,
It's aimed at both men and women and, yes, they are together at the end of the story; in fact the central female character is expecting another baby, which both characters regard as symbolic of the future: if she had not saved him there would be no future.
I resaeached the era of the 1970s and it's a bit different from Dick Francis,whose novels I enjoyed also, though conspiracy and jealousy abounds.
I find,disturbingly, that what's going on with News International is close to what happens to my heroine and hero at the hands of the security services, most of which is in the public domain, thanks to the Thirty Year Rule and the Data Protection Act, for which we must thank Brussels when everybody else is slagging off the EU.
Good uck with your book.