Writing Journey

Authors’ Billboard Blog December 6th

A long and winding road…

My journey as a writer/author/story creator hasn’t been put tab A into slot B and success will rain down in the form of money and accolades. I wish 😉

Instead, it was more of a squiggly line and now here I am with 62 published novels. The last fourteen have been in the cozy mystery/mystery genre. I am grateful for the romance community, one of generosity from my first ever Florida Romance Conference when I was, gulp, 34. What does one know at 34?? Well, I always knew I wanted to be a writer, so that part never changed. The genres of my stories were more flexible. As it turned out, that meant that I was writing all over the board rather than choosing a lane, which isn’t the recommended route for “success”. Oops.

After my divorce in 2013, I found, thanks to my dear friend Patrice Wilton, contemporary romance, and Authors’ Billboard. I’d previously been published by small presses in medieval romance and young adult novels. It seemed the YA market didn’t flourish in the ebook market in 2008/2009 and at the time the one thing that was going strong with ebooks was romance. Especially contemporary romance! Readers devoured those stories. The small press that my medieval romances were with went bankrupt in 2014 (I think) so I focused on writing contemporary romances about women who healed their broken hearts by the sea, that I could indie publish with Authors’ Billboard. We hit the USA Today several times!! I was part of my local RWA chapter and Patrice and I co-wrote our first book, a romance titled: Soccer Studs, Brody. Well, we found out that we were compatible writing partners (I plot, she is a pantser who wrote a steady number of pages per day, which is reliable and wonderful) On one FRW cruise, we met our agent and pitched Brody. He didn’t sell the romance but asked us (separately) if we’d be interested in cozies. Patrice answered the call before I did (she’s always been a few steps ahead lol) but she included me when she accepted, and this new direction of our careers was born. That was five years ago, and we have six books together in the Salem B and B series, and two indie Sandpiper Bay mysteries, with a third to come.

I have branched out from my Lauderdale by the Sea contemporaries to the West Coast, which are grittier romances. I do one per year as I focus on the cozies. My Scottish Shire series has been put in large print for libraries and was picked up by a German publisher. I have a new Irish Castle series that will debut as Ellie Brannigan in February. I never could have imagined being here. When I was first published in 2008, I thought that within ten years I’d be making six figures and living a life of champagne and lobster. The publishing industry was knocked on its butt, but we never gave up. We adapted. The truth is that people love stories, whether it’s reading or watching or gaming, the heart is a story of some kind. My journey has had ups and downs, but here I am, twenty years later. I have books in the one remaining bookstore LOL—or so it seems, but Barnes and Noble has been kind. My champagne is bought at Total Wine. I have the privilege of writing stories for my modest but independent living. There are times when the road is rocky, and times when it seems to fly. It’s crazy to be on this particular hilltop and look back to where I’ve come from, appreciate it, and then continue on the journey!

Thanks so much to my writing community! Thanks to the gang at Authors’ Billboard. As I close this, thanks to my nineteen-year-long critique partner, Patrice 😊

Wishing everyone an amazing holiday season, with love,

Traci


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About Traci Hall

From cozy mysteries to seaside romance, USA Today bestselling author Traci Hall writes stories that captivate her readers. As a hybrid author with over sixty published works, Ms. Hall has a favorite tale for everyone. Mystery lovers, check out her Scottish Shire series, set in the seaside town of Nairn, or the Salem B&B Mystery series, co-written as Traci Wilton. Her latest project is an Irish Castle cozy as Ellie Brannigan. Whether it's her ever-popular By the Sea romances, an Appletree Cove sweet romance, or a fun who-done-it, Traci finds her inspiration in sunny South Florida, living right near the ocean. Traci wants to hear from you! Traci@TraciHall.com

6 Replies to “Writing Journey”

  1. Thanks for sharing the story of your writing journey. The one thing I think most of us Authors’ Billboard ‘old timers’ have in common is we’ve written more books than if we hadn’t been hanging out together. I thought I’d stop at five books. Now I’m working towards writing fifty!

  2. Most of us don’t go straight from point A to point B. Life loves to throw in enough twists and turns to make the journey interesting. Like you, many writers take their own writer’s journey that develops like a complex plot, but which just makes the trip more interesting. Your work with your writing partner sounds ideal. Keep the stories coming.

  3. Congratulations Traci on the 62 books, and the continuous success. I witnessed your first steps, and the whole journey. You never gave up and was always an inspiration. A toast to you. Soon you’ll reach 100 books without even knowing it.

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