New post: Blurb Thursday #2 (Blurb critique)
Hello and welcome!
Who I am (for skimmers)
I’m Maria Messini, penning under MM Jaye, a bilingual Greek, translation instructor by day, mom, wife, blogger and writer throughout the day (and night). I write romances because I love anything HEA and because, well, if you need tough reality, just look around you.
Who I am (for readers)
I live in Athens with my worked-out husband and 5-year-old daughter, or rather with a teenager and a toddler. In terms of self-realization, motherhood has been a real eye-opener, but with it the notion of “quality time for myself” was tossed in the bin along with the first diaper.
As a reader, I’ve always been voracious. At the age of four, I taught myself how to read all the nursery rhymes I could get my hands on. By my late teens, I was done with the classics. My twenties were all about modern classics, and later, I went through a long and dark thriller phase. Then my appetite for reading just waned. Poetry sounded pompous, literary fiction smacked of self-serving arrogance and dark fiction brimmed with unnecessary violence. I read the occasional humorous book and stayed clear of any work endorsed by highbrow critics.
One day, while on my honeymoon in Lisbon, I found a book in a drawer at my hotel room. It was Rhonda Nelson’s The Specialist, a Harelquin Blaze. Reading it was a jaw-meet-floor situation for me. Did people actually write like that? After the initial shock, I realized that the book had “worked” on many levels (apart from the obvious), and that’s how I discovered romance. It took me a while to come out, but now I’m an unapologetic romance reader, happily jumping from one sub-genre to the other.
My next tentative step was to put pen to paper (or rather fingertips to keyboard) and write a story from scratch. It took me four years to convince myself that I had it in me, but there’s no stopping me now. My first novel, a contemporary romance entitled Fate Captured, set in the beautiful island of Alonissos where my husband proposed (see Gallery below–my own photography, thank you very much), will be published this spring, followed by Fate Awakened, Book Two in my Greek Billionaires series.
I briefly tried the traditional publishing route, querying ten agents, and I’ve had a couple of partial requests (yes, my query letter worked!) but it didn’t go any farther down that road. Since I can’t have anyone dictating deadlines, and I want free creative and artistic rein, I gave up sending queries in favor of trying out self-publishing.
Platform-building, blog writing, book setup and marketing, dos and don’ts…the road to self-publishing is windy and treacherous and needs careful mapping, so I created this space where I’ll log my experience and host other writers willing to share theirs.
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