Thursday, January 10, 2013

Welcome Guest Blogger Susan Meier!

Susan Meier is the author of 50 books for Harlequin and Silhouette and one of Guideposts' Grace Chapel Inn series books, The Kindness of Strangers. Her books have been finalists in RWA Chapter contests and National Reader's Choice Awards and have been nominated for Romantic Times Reviewer’s Choice awards, including her December 2011 release KISSES ON HER CHRISTMAS LIST. She is a recipient of several Reviewer's Choice Awards.

 Susan loves to teach as much as she loves to write and is a popular speaker at RWA chapter conferences. Can This Manuscript Be Saved? and Journey Steps, No Frills Guide to Plotting! are her most requested workshops. Her article “How to Write a Category Romance” appeared in 2003 Writer’s Digest Novel and Short Story Markets.  Susan also gives online workshops for various groups and her articles regularly appear in RWA chapter newsletters. In 2012 she debuted four new online workshops, Let Conflict Tell Your Story for You, Conflict and the Category Romance, Sweet Romances: Moving the Relationship Forward Without Sex and Self-Editing.

Her popular Monday morning blog, Dear Writers, weekly writing lessons taken from her experiences with submissions, revisions and successes.

 Good morning, everyone!

As you can see, I’ve been a fairly busy writer! I’m also a writer who can boast that she’s earned her living from writing. One of the reasons is that I chose a genre which sells very well: Romance. Women are voracious readers and lots like romance novels. So I’ve been happily employed for twenty-five years.

But I wasn’t always published, and back in the day before ebooks it wasn’t easy to get published. So let me take you back to the beginning of my story.

I knew I wanted to write from the time I was old enough to hold a pencil. J But I lived in a poor, rural community in the Appalachian Mountains. Men weren’t encouraged to go to college but to work in the coal mines. So you can imagine a woman certainly was not encouraged to develop any talent she might have.

I ended up doing what everyone expected I would do. I married a steelworker and began a family. But one month before my thirtieth birthday I awoke incredibly depressed. I wasn’t doing anything I wanted to do with my life and I felt as if my soul was being suffocated.

My husband said, “So what did you want to do with your life?”

I said, “Write.”

And he said, “So write.”

In that moment, I realized that we are all the masters of our own destinies. I didn’t have to aim for superstardom or even publication. All I had to do was buy a typewriter and some paper and write. Thirty years later, I’m not just published, but I’ve provided my share of the income for twenty-five years through my books. I’ve traveled all over the United States talking about my journey and helping others who want to write to live their dreams. I’ve lived a blessed life! J

I think the problem most of us encounter when we try to live our dreams is that we always connect it to money. The poetry of your soul doesn’t respond to dollar signs. That doesn’t mean that you won’t someday make a living from your writing…but don’t start out to be rich. Begin your journey with something you want to tell the world.

I always believed love made the world go around and I write about that every day. I’m enthralled by how finding the right mate can (and does) change a person’s life.

What do you want to say?
That’s what you need to write about. In fact, take a minute right now and write a page or two about the theme or life truth you’d like the opportunity to explore in a book or blog or essay. Really let
yourself go. Don’t think about who might read it or what they might think. Just write the truth that comes out of you.


  1. Wonderful advice, Susan. Write what you believe, and what you want to share with others. Very few writers are blessed and able to make a live from their books, but all writers have one thing in common--a passion for writing.

  2. Great post, thanks, Susan, for sharing about your early beginnings as a writer. Great advice, too.