SARA Welcomes Emily W. Mims

Emily_W_Mims_2016How did you learn about SARA and what made you want to join?

I heard about SARA through RWA and the meetup groups.  I decided to join b/c of what I saw at RWA.  All my writer friends got such wonderful support from their local chapters and I realized I could have that, too!

What sub-genre(s) of romance stories do you write?

My shorts are contemporary romance.  The longer books usually have an element of suspense.

What made you decide to write romance?

In 1982, I threw a romance novel across the floor and said I could do better.  My husband dared me to!

What do you think is the most misconceived idea readers have about romance writers?

They expect us to all be young and beautiful like our heroines!

What’s the best advice you’ve been given or read about writing?

Nora Roberts said it best.  ‘Just sit down and write’ That’s paraphrased, her version was saltier.

What writer(s) inspired you to try your hand at writing as well?

None in particular. It was the bad one that inspired me and I don’t remember who wrote it.

What is the best book you’ve ever read about the craft of writing?

A book?  None.  I learned the most from Lydia Paglio, a wonderful editor who trained me over the phone.

Are you a pantser or are you an outliner? Why?

I am seriously anal-retentive plotter-that’s how I was trained and that’s my natural inclination with a science background

What is the hardest part of writing for you? Starting? Creating a scene? Dialog? Tension, etc?

Sitting down with a Big Chief and nailing down the plot-that’s serious work.  After that it’s all downhill

What is the biggest surprise and/or frustration you’ve learned in the writing/publishing process?

Thirty years ago the publisher took care of the publicity and promotion.  Now I have to do that for myself.  It’s hard.

Is there a genre you wish you could write in, but never will? Which one?

Paranormal!  I love them but they don’t love me.

We have all experienced rejection. Give me an example of one you’ve had, and how you learned to write past it.

I know the answer to that all too well.  I lost my contract with Dell in 1985 and didn’t sell another book for 28 years.  I would go on with things, but I would on some level always miss it.

It took me eighteen months to find an agent and it took her three years to place my first book.  Getting past it?  I started work on the second book.

What do you see as your writing goals 5 years from now?

More series.  I just finished a 9-book or story series -Texas Hill Country-and am writing a 6 book series-Smoky Blue set in Appalachia.  More of those set around the country.

Any other tips or words you’d like to share about writing?

Don’t let anybody tell you that you can’t succeed!  If a Chemistry teacher from San Antonio can write and sell 28 books and counting, you can too!!