I finished Hot Shot in 2001, in time for RWA National in New Orleans, my first National. I had an appointment with Joan Marlow Golan, who then acquired for Desire.

Hot Shot was 58,000 words. That’s what it took to be a Desire, right?

(I told you I was stupid.)

Er, Desire doesn’t buy stories about a reporter and a firefighter running for their lives on a mountain in Montana.

I don’t think she actually said those words to me – she may have actually asked for the manuscript – but I was stupid. SOOOO not a Desire.

But around this time, I started reading Intimate Moments. I loved Virginia Kantra and Karen Templeton. THIS was what I wanted to write. And Hot Shot seemed a good fit for the line. It only needed…20,000 more words.


But I loved this story. It was the best thing I’d ever written. If I couldn’t invest time in this, I wasn’t a real writer. So I read over it again (you can see why I’m somewhat sick of it at this point.)

I’d missed so many wonderful opportunities! For example, I had Peyton, my heroine, sitting in camp waiting for Gabe, my hero, to return from rescuing girl scouts from a camp.


I rewrote it where she went with him, and damned if the book didn’t become the book I wanted to write, the story I wanted to tell from that point on. With that, I had my hero and heroine alone on the mountain (my M.O.), alternately running for their lives and falling in love.

Tomorrow – the flames…

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Kelly Boyce said...

I love reading the progression of how this book developed! Very interesting.

Cindy Taylor said...

Mary, Mary , Mary. You weren't stupid. When we all first started writing, we didn't know anything about the biz. And look how smart you are now. ;)

I just don't understand why this hasn't sold. You must be way ahead of your curve, girl. I'd buy it simply on the partial blurb. It has all the elements of a great romanctic suspence.

Janice Lynn said...

Mary, I agree with Cindy. YOU WERE NOT STUPID. Learning these kind of things are what makes up better writers. With each word you write, you improve. It's natural to be able to look back and see where the story went wrong or how to improve it. YOU ARE AWESOME. AWESOME. AWESOME.

MJFredrick said...

Aww, y'all are too kind.

I was stupid. And unwilling to learn.

But boy, is this blog thing helping! And the collage pictures (I need a board) and the 11 page TNR synopsis I wrote yesterday. I'm all fired up!


M.J. Fredrick's books on Goodreads
Breaking DaylightBreaking Daylight
ratings: 11 (avg rating 3.33)

Beneath the SurfaceBeneath the Surface
ratings: 11 (avg rating 4.00)

Hot ShotHot Shot (Samhain)
reviews: 2
ratings: 10 (avg rating 4.00)

Where There's SmokeWhere There's Smoke
ratings: 6 (avg rating 4.00)

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I'm a mom, a wife, a teacher and a writer. I have five cats and a dog to keep me company. I love bookstores and libraries and Netflix - movies are my greatest weakness.
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