Thursday, July 4, 2013
Writing for Mills and Boon
If like me you haven't picked up a Mills and Boon since you were at your grandma's house a quarter of a century ago then you may be forgiven for thinking that Mills and Boon books are mild, slightly stomach churning romance stories. You know the type I mean - the ones with the Milk Tray Men - Strong masculine dominant types wooing and ultimately marrying saccharine sweet, simpering, doormats.
I LOVED Mills and Boon when I was about 13 or 14 and I also loved the Silhouettte Romance series. (I probably wasn't the target age group at the time LOL but I loved them because I loved the idea of being in love. I loved the idea of being swept off my feet by a tall, dark, handsome stranger and getting married and living in perfectville with our perfect kids.But then I grew up!!! Mills and Boon was as UNCOOL as it was possible to be and I started reading the likes of Sweet Valley High.
Why the sudden interest now you might ask??? Well, if you check you my website www.ingridhall.com you will see that I intend over the next year to unleash my alter ego Luna Ballantyne upon the world. I intend to start writing serious, hard core erotic fiction and I needed to start researching the market place and yes, okay a Mills and Boon probably wasn't the most logical place to start however I was in a local charity shop and I happened across MOUNTAIN MIDWIFE by Cassie Miles - Part of their Intrigue series and yes, I was intrigued...because the blurb description certainly wasn't of a Mills and Boon of my youth.. No in this particular book the heroine, Rachel, is a midwife who is kidnapped and driven to a remote mountain lodge and forced to attend a bank robber as she gives birth. So, I bought the book - I read the book - and you know what, I really LOVED the book. The hero Cole is dark and edgy enough to set my pulse racing and Rachel is gutsy, feisty and takes no crap - In spite of the perilous nature of the situation in which she finds herself. Oh yeah, and she ends up marrying the sexy, dark and edgy Cole.
So I did a bit of digging - and OMG the Mills and Boon of today has certainly moved with the times and has evolved into something SPECTACULAR. Covering just about every genre imaginable including EROTICA - PARANORMAL - YOUNG ADULT - CRIME AND THRILLER - as well as a whole host of others. There truly is something for everyone.
I am going over the next few weeks to look closely at several of the books in these genres and see if I think Luna would be suited to any of them - If I am honest I am unsure if I will be able to write to the guidelines that they set as my writing tends to be a little more experimental. However it is definitely worth a closer look and I am not going to look a gift horse in the mouth. Who knows what I can come up with an open mind, bit of practice and a willing husband...
Swiftly moving on before you all start throwing up - Writing for Mills and Boon has added benefits. They publish your books for you - They have editorial teams - So no formatting to amazon's specifications - No need to have sleepless nights worrying about whether you have put your commas and your full stops in the right places. They also PAY YOU. REAL MONEY. Something which a lot of aspiring authors can only dream about...
So first of all to all READERS out there go pick up a Mills and Boon, see how great they are for yourself and to all indie authors out there - Whatever your genre - Don't look down your noses at them - Don't presume it's not for you. Check them out...You might be pleasantly surprised...
You can find full details as to how to submit your manuscript to Mills and Boon as well as detailed guidelines as to their requirements at: www.millsandboon.co.uk/aspiringauthors.asp
Ingrid Hall is the author of Granny Irene's Guide to the Afterlife Revenge. She offers free reviews and interviews at www.ingridhall.com