I began writing years ago as some of you know. I was always creating characters and personalities with my dolls and stuffed animals at a very early age. Everything that surrounded me had 'life'. It was the way I saw the world. So it was no surprise when I began my journey of writing novels it would be so easy for me, so forthcoming. It's second nature and something that brings me great joy. I just never thought I would write in the romance genre. Not that I didn't like romance books, actually I never read them. Janet Evonovich's plum series is the closest thing to a romance novel that I have read. I guess those classify, but not in the mushy take me now kind of way. I'm a hopeless romantic and just like all the other little girls, my prince charming was very stereotyped too. He was very white horse, sweep you off your feet and highly charming. Hmm. Not any man I dated fit that criteria of course.
After years of being married, when I returned to my pen or as you can say keyboard these days and jumped back into writing, my Hero's in my books were not rescuers, no they were the boy next door, the one who blows you away with the breath of that first kiss, the one who stares at you from across the room and melts your heart. And their situations I felt needed to be identifiable. Something I had experienced or suffered or something I had seen my GFs go thru. But strangely enough I didn't write my first novel over any topic I had ever experienced. No I wrote it about a situation I would never want to find myself in, that I knew I wouldn't be able to deal with. I wrote it about a woman who married her 'first lovers' brother. And how being cast into his family as his sister-in-law with very real feelings for him still, effected her. Even though I had never experienced such a pain I could write it as though I had and I suffered with her. It was filled full of Drama that you could easily get lost in too. A no brainer. An easy thinker.
I was quite thrilled with this book called, "Sailing Alice Marie" but I had no luck selling my precious project. I couldn't find an Agent and countless of publishing companies turned me down. I had set a goal for my self to be published by the time I was forty, but my dreams were dwindling. It was heartbreaking to get those rejection letters so I filed my last re-write of the book and pursued another passion. I was exhausted.
Then one night, years later, I felt the pain of a new idea for a book, "The Allow Factor." I felt wholeheartedly that women were treated a certain way for one very main reason, they allowed themselves too. With that thought in my heart I wrote the book and poured every aha...every idea... every pain I ever felt in my forty plus years into it. I created a beautiful woman and a handsome man named to get my point across. I wanted women to know there is always hope... you have choices.
I polished my pretty piece and had someone read it. "It's good. Not my type, I like erotica." I was told. Hmm...good...hmm. I thought I had something. So a sweet friend of mine thought before I gave up please send it to her literary agency, let them take a look first. "You will love them!" she told me. So I did. And while I waited for a response I submitted my synopsis to other Agents marking each one off my list when the rejection emails returned. Then one day Brenda from GLA (my sweet friends Agent) sent me a rejection. I was crushed. I sent my pretty manuscript to one more friend and asked her to read it. What was I missing? I already heard it was good, right? What is it? Not good enough? It was a good story this I knew and one everyone related too. I didn't get it.
She wasted no time getting back to me. "I don't like your guy or your girl, they bore me." What? "I don't like them, especially her!" Oh my, my girl was adorable, at least in my mind she was, but I took her criticism with a smile and said Thank you for being honest. And I reopened my manuscript. How can I make you fall in love with her? At the time her name was Bella (what was I thinking, not twilight) so I changed it to Sadie. Then I revamped the whole time frame, where she was, what was the source of her pain, how would she survive it. Then I had to make you fall in love with Radley because at the time he was an ASS plain and simple. But you had to love him first right? Just as I had. And it worked.
One night I was Facebook catching up on everyones lives and I received a message in my inbox from Brenda of GLA. She apologized for not accepting my manuscript, what a sweet lady to apologize. She owed me no apology. I told her that it was ok, I understood and added I had changed a few things around, added more detail, and I added "I know someone will buy my book, I know it's good." With that she said to give her two weeks and send it to her again with the changes. She would take one more look. Wow. I had a second chance. Yay!
Back to the manuscript to refine once again then I waited as she had asked me too then I sent it. She immediately offered me a contract. That was October. I CELEBRATED!! Now the real work began...ha...She had to sell it. Nothing was promised. We went back and forth thru the holidays answering request from different publishers. Jan 30, 2014 I received an email stating Solstice Publishing was interested in my book so I CELEBRATED when I signed the contract. I CELEBRATED when I was assigned a cover artist... how cool! Someone else was doing the art work! When the art work was finalized and I saw my pen name Olivia Gracey for the first time I cried like a baby ... then I CELEBRATED! When I was assigned a Editor it scared me to death and made me extremely nervous. This was the point in which all my hard work was going to be dissected and ripped to shreds. The truth comes out at this point if your a good writer, I was a nervous wreck! (btw one round of editing ;) And with this I CELEBRATED! Now the proofreader has her turn... and I'm waiting in the wings to CELEBRATE the final pdf copy of my sweet masterpiece. I plan to CELEBRATE when it hits Ebooks... then I'll probably pass out when I actually hold the printed copy in my hands! A moment I can't wait to CELEBRATE!
My journey has been a sweet one... The Good Lord has blessed me with what I love to do most, write. I plan to reach many women (and some Men) with my book. And I plan to CELEBRATE every little step. Life is worth CELEBRATING!!! Never stop CELEBRATING and never give up on what you love the most!
Olivia Gracey...Mother, Fiction Romance Writer, Realtor, Singer/Songwriter for Just Gracey, Photographer, Consider myself very blessed. I love a good workout and I love to dance in my socks!
"For just a mere time I felt safe, unbroken and loved. Just a mere moment in time I felt loved once again; Loved by the man who broke me."