Romance is a genre that doesn’t always get the respect it deserves, but the authors are laughing all the way to the bank. Romance writers are the most prolific in the business, and it’s not unusual for them to make six figure annual incomes.
Recently I attended a weekend writers’/readers’ conference in Palm Springs. As a productivity fiend, always looking for models and inspiration, I absolutely admire these women. (Most of them are women, although some men sneak in using pen names.) It’s not unusual for them to produce 40, 50, 60 novels. And don’t assume “the books are really short, anybody can do them.” First of all, they’re not “really short”, and even if they were, how many 50,000-word books have we produced? (Me: two. In ten years.)
At the conference, I ditched my pride and asked everybody about the Secret Template.
Where was the simple, easy-to-use story structure they all followed that allowed them to crank out so many books? Surely there was one.
Back to the drawing boards for me.
As I reviewed the schedule, I was surprised to see a huge gap where Saturday’s lunch break was supposed to be. There were no classes, no formal anything. Instead, several hours were set aside to get ready for the late-afternoon and evening activities.
I chortled to Bill: “Oh my God, they have a salon! A makeup artist! Costumes to rent! The idea is, you get all fancied up for the evening and then get your picture taken with a cover model.” How shallow, how cheesy!
But then I thought, wait a minute. What if?
- What if you were a romance writer and wanted a publicity photo of yourself and Mr. Pecs?
- What if you made that photo into a lifesized poster for your next book signing?
- What if you just got a nice looking headshot for your portfolio, regardless of your genre?
As with everything about the writing biz, these women are ahead of the rest of us! Next time I’m going to pay for a makeover and get my picture taken.
The conference was new to the area (they’d been in Las Vegas the past two years) so there were some hiccups, but I’d go again, if for no other reason than to rub elbows with these hard-working, professional writers. (And maybe a hunky cover model). If you’re curious about the conference, bookmark this website. Maybe they’ll do it again next year and you can get your picture taken, too! Just for professional purposes, of course.