For today’s (and next Monday’s) post, I’d like to introduce you to fiction writer Darlene Franklin. Darlene has only been writing for a few years and has had some devastating personal challenges along the way, yet in that time she has written several books as well as short stories and devotionals. I talked to Darlene about her writing career as well as her advice for getting through tough times while you’re trying to write.
First of all, Darlene, how did you break into writing, and how did you find your current niche?
I was fortunate to have a short devotional published after I’d been writing for two years. After that, publications were fairly few and far between until my first book, Romanian Rhapsody, came out in 2005.
As far as finding my niche, let’s just say that romance found me. At first, I wrote about personal struggles. I’ve never had much success selling personal experience stories–only a few. Then I tried my hand at fiction, a prairie romance; and I discovered my natural voice. I give the credit to God; the only insight into human love this divorced mother has comes from the God who loves us!
I’ve tried a lot of genres, but romance (contemporary and historical) and devotionals seem to be the best fit. That’s been mostly a matter of trial and error.
What, to date, has been the most rewarding part of your writing career?
Well, I love getting paid to make up stories! I also love teaching other writers. I have had a few special reader responses as well.
Talk a little about Beacon of Love and how that book came about. What was your inspiration for it?
In Beacon of Love, a doctor afraid of the water and a lighthouse keeper’s daughter fight to keep the light burning throughout a hurricane. It’s the first book of three historical romances set in Rhode Island; the three books are being repackaged this summer as Seaside Romance.
I’m a native New Englander, and in fact my parents lived on the Maine coast for almost 30 years. So when I read about a lighthouse destroyed during the Great Gale of 1816, I knew what I wanted to write about!
Where do you see yourself in the future as a writer? What goals have you developed for yourself?
My immediate goal is to have enough books in print and under contract to make a full-time living. That includes moving into writing trade-length books.
In the future, I’d like to be both a recognized writer (not necessarily best-selling, although that would be nice) and someone who helps train the next generation of writers.
Next Monday, I’ll be discussing with Darlene how God has guided her through her writing and her challenges to get her where she is today. Please stop back!
In the meantime, you can get to know Darlene better by visiting her blogsite. and, I understand she is having a book giveaway contest during the month of April for anyone who leaves a comment on her blog!
See ya next time!