Taking over the blog for today: Mia del Socorro, author of Love Under Cover, a #buqosteamyreads story
Sumali ako sa steamyreads seminar quite by accident (o destiny ba?) because I was quite eager to join other writers who I hoped would get me back on stream after I found myself experiencing dryness as I approached what I thought were the closing chapters of a novel I began to write more than a year ago.
When I started writing the novel, I was pleasantly surprised to find myself writing again after a long, long period of absolute aridity insofar as fiction writing is concerned. And I felt so happy and fulfilled. Until I found myself stalled again. Was I going to stop short of completion? Was I going to bail out somehow? So I signed up to join the group, despite the intimidating name it had given to itself, “steamyreads seminar.”
Why should I be afraid, I told myself. I’m a mature, married woman, quite advanced in years, with four grown children to boot.
The seminar was quite an eye opener for me. Quite obviously, I was the oldest. Many of the participants were younger than my youngest son. And I saw a glimpse of the world my children live in today.
To start with, I am not a romance novel reader. In fact, the last complete novel I read was probably “The Joy Luck Club”, several decades ago, and I don’t think you’d classify that as a romance novel.
When I was a teenager myself, I wrote romantic short stories, quite advanced and intensely disturbing for that time. Now, in the steamyreads seminar, I found myself almost infantile and ignorant, out of my depth it seemed, in terms not only of knowledgeability and inner poise not only about sexual matters but also of an even more basic view of life and of the world. This world. The world of the here and now. The world of the so-called millenials.
Thankfully, I did not have a problem thinking of a storyline for the trope I was assigned to do. In less than two weeks, I was able to come up with my first draft, which included what I thought was a satisfying sex scene which I gave a heat level rating of 3.
I wanted to get editorial assistance but found myself having to deal with several pressing domestic emergencies so I didn’t have time to explore options. So I showed my story to a seventy-nine year old aunt, a published writer herself, but not of fiction works. I also enclosed Mina’s description of the heat levels we were supposed to incorporate in our stories.
My aunt shocked me when she said I had an interesting story line but that my heat level was definitely ZERO. I was in a quandary. Do I raise the ante, and by that I meant the heat level of my story, or do I just bail out?
Ultimately, I decided to take on the challenge. I am a professional, I told myself, and I should regard this as a commissioned work. I have to meet my “client’s” expectations. I have to fulfil my TOR. BUT – I will never do it again. Hindi na ako uulit.
With that resolve, I was able to come up with an expanded sex scene that I think anybody would say should pass for a heat level 3. And I do like it. I am proud of what I came up with. In fact, I’m beginning to rethink my novel and wondering if I shouldn’t add more spice to my almost finished novel.
I’m still thinking.
Love Under Cover is part of the Passion #buqosteamyreads bundle. Get it on buqo for iOS and Android, or at buqo.ph.