My director at work has asked us to create proposals for new projects at work.  His one guiding principal: propose something you are passionate about.  Find something that you care so much about you would be heartbroken to hear “no.”  I found one to propose – I think my coworkers are going a bit crazy from my constant “idea bouncing” and yammering about it.  🙂  Hey, the boss wants passion…

Passion for writing is also important.  Every book I’ve read about writing says to write what you know, or better yet, to write the book you want to read.  Find characters that you love, a story that you can’t wait to share, and write it! 

Not counting writing and revising, I’ve read my manuscript three times.  Every time I get to a point where I can’t put it down.  I wrote the thing!  I know what happens!  It doesn’t mean that it will affect others the same way, but at least I succeeded in writing a book I want to read.  As I’ve mentioned before, the secret for me was the characters.  I love my characters.  They are like my children.  I worked very hard to give them depth (although I think I fell short with my antagonist) and to make it easy for the reader to feel connected to them.  When you care about the characters, you want to know what happens to them.  This can carry you through even less-exciting sections, and it definitely creates the drive to keep reading.

I know that when I get into my stories, I always want to know what happens next!