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Digital Subscriptions > Writing Magazine > January 2017 > Subscriber spotlight

Subscriber spotlight

Share your writing success stories. If you subscribe to Writing Magazine and would like to feature here, email Tina Jackson,

Romance clicks

‘I have always been fond of a good romance (which I believe outsells all other genres), and have read many,’ writes subscriber Anna Aysgarth.

‘Over the years, I tried to write contemporary romantic fiction but couldn’t seem to find the right voice.

‘Being a huge fan of Jane Austen, the Regency period and Christmas, once I had decided to put the three ingredients together, A Bride for Christmas emerged. I particularly enjoyed researching the manners and etiquette, which seem far more complicated than they are now. Although manners and fashions change, human behaviour does not, and I believe a love story has a timeless quality.

‘When I finished the book, I almost left it at that. Fortunately, I was leafing through a copy of Writing Magazine and noticed a short article about an American publisher, Melange, which was accepting unsolicited manuscripts. I hesitated before clicking send, but click I did, and then put it firmly out of my mind. I was prepared for rejection, it had happened before, but I decided I had enjoyed writing the book and anything else would be a bonus (though I always wanted to know if I was good enough).

‘The reply came through remarkably quickly; they would like to publish. Never usually lost for words, apart from a squeak, I was speechless. My editor at Melange was fantastic at getting the book into shape and the attention to detail from all the team was tremendous.

‘I hadn’t told most of my friends or family about writing a book because they can sometime burst the bubble of enthusiasm by pointing out the reasons why things might not work out. They do it kindly to manage expectations, but it can lead to loss of confidence. If I was a fairy godmother, that is the gift I would give, especially to new writers.’

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About Writing Magazine

• STAR INTERVIEW WITH LEE CHILD, the multi-million selling creator of the Jack Reacher novels • Writing wisdom from the great Greek thinkers – rules that have stood the test of time • How to make your historical fiction stand out, and top tips on the genre from author Nicola Cornick • Study the short story masters to learn the art of the unreliable narrator • The magazine sleuth - how every magazine tells you exactly what its editor needs

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