Friday, October 17, 2014

Submit These Seven Themes To The Love Inspired Lines

by Emily Krupin, Assistant Editor for Love Inspired Suspense and Historical

Happy 7th Birthday, Seekerville! Thanks so much for inviting me to guest blog during the big celebration. To keep with the trend, I want to give you the inside scoop on “seven” themes I’d like to continue seeing in Love Inspired Suspense and Historical.

Editors are often asked what type of stories we’d like to see in our inboxes. When diving into a submission, I tend to focus on the connection I feel with main characters and the dramatic conflict between the hero and heroine. But which story ideas will have me racing to draft up your contract?

1. Amnesia stories. A heroine is attacked and left for dead. When she recovers, she can’t remember who or why someone attacked her. Is she still in danger? Maybe a law enforcement hero can step in to help her find some answers. You can see how amnesia stories offer suspenseful, high-stakes plots. Another scenario is a character with dissociative amnesia—no memory of a past traumatic event. And perhaps remembering that past event could now save the character’s life…or help put a criminal behind bars. Amnesia stories will definitely catch my attention.

I call this one: I LOVE COFFEE!!! 

2. Secret/surprise baby plots. Not many can resist an adorable baby. If your manuscript includes a surprise baby on a doorstep, a hero or heroine suddenly taking guardianship of a child, or reveals a main character’s been caring for a secret infant, send it my way.

 3. Amish town settings. It could be about a hero’s return to the Amish community—and former love—he left years ago. Or perhaps a heroine is desperate to uncover the truth about a relative’s murder in her Plain town. “Bonnet books,” as they’re sometimes called, combine the sense of family and faith we seek. The key is to write about the old-fashioned way of life with relevance to today’s readers.

4. Redemption stories. I love a compelling story of redemption. Whether it’s a character that has reformed her previous ways and now seeks a fresh start, or a hero righting the wrongs of his past, I’d like to read it.

I call this one: 99% of my moving boxes are marked this way!
5. Cowboys/ranchers taming the Wild West. I’m sure you’ve noticed we’re big fans of cowboys and ranchers in our Love Inspired Historical books. Well, I’ve got news for you—we can’t get enough of them! I’d like you to cowboy up and send in your stories of characters traveling and taming the Old West.

6. Holiday stories. Nothing escalates tension between clashing characters like the holidays. It can add a deadline to an already extreme timetable. Or make an impromptu proposal that much more romantic. I really enjoy the conflict of a character returning to his hometown for Christmas and being thrown together with the last person he’d want to see—his ex. Besides holiday reunion romances, I’d like to receive stories incorporating Thanksgiving, New Year’s and, of course, Christmas.

And the fight is on!!! Killer Voices 2014!

7. Something completely different! I challenge you to send in your heroes and heroines with quirky careers and fresh stories we haven’t even imagined. Maybe that means a lobsterman stumbling upon a crime ring. Maybe this means experimenting and writing a manuscript with college-age characters. As long as it follows our Love Inspired guidelines and centers on a growing romance between the hero and heroine as they work toward a common goal, I’d like to see your proposal.

Here are a few final notes about my manuscript wish list. Since I hail from a tiny town on Long Island, I always enjoy small town settings in our books. Although, I also appreciate when an author creates the sense of a tight-knit community in a city or foreign location. Give me a secret spy or Witness Protection story any day. And I love when an author can weave humor into a dramatic or emotional story. Most important, I want to read about your unforgettable characters!

Some themes lend themselves toward our Love Inspired Suspense line, and others to our Love Inspired Historical line. But if you write a new spin on a classic theme, by all means—surprise me! Send in that suspenseful cowboy story you’ve had on the backburner.


Thanks again for inviting me to celebrate your 7th birthday! Feel free to ask any questions in the comments below and follow me on Twitter at @EmilyKrupin. 

Ruthy here! FIRST!!!! Thank you Emily for coming on board and celebrating our seventh birthday with us! We love our editorial team(s) at Love Inspired and let me just remind everyone that Love Inspired offers opportunities very few publishers do these days, and that's to look at unsolicited and unagented manuscripts.... so keep writing! Finish the book! Learn the craft and we'll do all we can here in Seekerville to help you do just that.

We've got a slew of books to give away today, we'll be drawing over a dozen names from the cat dish for two-packs of books to wing their way to you! Stop by and leave a comment to have your name tossed into the cat dish (the cats are getting positively ANNOYED this month, but I just shrugged them off... Seekerville Rocks, Kitties! That's what I told 'em!  :)  Also your name will be put in for our weekly $50 drawing and our end-of-the-month-long celebration i-Pad mini!

Coffee's on and I brought a passel full of New York Bagels, cream cheese, toppings and we're throwin' in some dirty water dogs later. Nothin' like a dirty water dog walkin' along the seaport of Lower Manhattan! 


  1. Emily ... I hope you get those stories. I'm a reader, not a writer, and I'm drooling over those plots! I'll come and give your kitties extra love, RUTHY. They deserve it for being off their feed. Thanks for the chance to win those books.

  2. (A passel! That's impressive, Ruthy!)

    Oh, Emily, I can't begin to tell you how many of my moving boxes have that same marking. And before the moving van left, I personally checked the truck to make sure all my book boxes were off. Much more important than pillows and bedding! It's called priorities.

    Thank you for the post and hope.

  3. Hi Emily, Thanks so much for stopping by and sharing your wish list. It's fun to see that the book I sold to LIS through Killer Voices hits a bunch of those items.

    I totally encourage everyone to give it a try!

  4. So excited to have a Love Inspired editor here today I even cleaned out the coffee pot!

    Welcome, Emily.

    Great tips and wish list. Thank you.

  5. Great to meet you here Emily! Thanks for sharing your list! Happy writing day everyone!!!

  6. @Emily - The oldest LI Suspense novel I've ever read (published in 2005 or 2006) had an amnesia element to the story. I thought it was so different from any other LIs I had read ...

    Definitely hope to see a lot more of #7!

    @Ruthy - OMGoodness, I have to tell you what happened when I came home tonight. Your book came in, so being a nice daughter, I offered to let my mom read it first (since she loves LIs even more than I do --especially contemporaries). She looked at me sheepishly and said, "Actually, I already read it."
    Impossible. The book doesn't come out until December. Turns out she opened the package, read the book and put it back (lucky for her it was an adhesive envelope). She said she was going to call me and let me know, but knew I was in class all afternoon.

    I'm laughing to hard to be offended right now ... There's no question to where my bibliophile tendencies come from! ^_^

  7. I saw 2 and went NO as I don't like secret babies but then I saw an abandoned or someone secretly caring and thought I would like that book. its the ones where the heroine has the baby without the hero (father knowing) I got tired off.
    the amnesia stories sound good to as there are so many possibilities. (even having the person a bad guy waking up not knowing hes bad.)
    the others I agree with. I feel sorry for the cats but want to go in the bowl. well I don't but my name does.

  8. Hi Emily! I love Love Inspired books. All of them. I can't get enough. All the themes you mentioned are the reasons why I love them.

    Boxes of books? Yes, I know what you mean, I've been bringing boxes home from work for a week now so I can do a massive pack up of my keeper books, donate books, and giveaway books. Right now my office is overflowing.

    Thank you again for sharing the themes that grab your attention.

    Have a blessed happy birthday day in Seekerville everyone!

    Smiles & Blessings,
    Cindy W.

  9. a great posting!! and thanks for sharing your 'boxes of books.' :)

    kmkuka at yahoo dot com

  10. Oh, I love these reactions to the wish list!!!!

    Marianne, the kitties would love you! The mama brought her 4 month old kitten a baby mouse the other day, kind of like we buy kids FISHER PRICE TOYS... I left for North Carolina while kitten was still 'playing' with it... Oh my stars, cats are crazy hunters!!!

    I look at these plots and think: YES!!! I CAN DO THAT!!!! :)

  11. Lyndee, I love your priorities!!! Laughing!

  12. Jennifer, I'm laughing! And so honored! Tell your mama I love her so much!

    And I just mailed those on Monday, and to think it got to Hawaii that quickly???? WOW!!!! Maybe next time I'll come instead of mailing a book and mama and I can chat about romance!

    What a great story, thank you for sharing!

  13. Jenny! How are you feeling?

    You know, I love stories with babies and children. I absolutely adore spinning tales where it's a family involved, and not just a hero and heroine because I love having kids around!

    But Jenny, I hear you, it's all in the spin of how that baby comes to be.

    I used a dropped off baby in "Red Kettle Christmas" when it wasn't unusual for young mothers to leave their newborns on church steps. The thought of a baby, suddenly coming into someone's life, is such a huge turnaround that the plot kind of builds itself!

    I love me some babies!

  14. I love the cowboy/western theme the best! Love Inspired books are the best for a quick fix at the end of a long day :)

  15. Thanks for the chance to win books. My favorite thing in the whole wide world. I love cowboy/western themed books, babies, oh I love them all.

  16. Hi Emily,

    Thank you, thank you, thank you for sharing ideas that editor's like to see.

    You mentioned college aged characters, are you interested in middle-aged characters falling in love?

  17. Welcome, Emily! Your insider view on what Love Inspired is looking for is not only great for unpublished writers looking for a home with LI, but also a great reminder for those of us already writing for the line! So glad you can join us today!

  18. Hi Emily,

    Welcome to Seekerville. Thank you so much for sharing. I'm beginning to plot my next novel, and I'm aiming for Love Inspired. You've given me a lot to consider as I create my characters and plot.

    Thanks again for sharing your wish list.

  19. Thanks for the great post! Would love to be entered in the drawings. I love the Holiday stories centered around Christmas. With lots of snow. Thanks for the list of themes you're looking for. My dream is to be published by LI one day, so this post is a definite keeper!

  20. Hi Emily,
    I love the Love Inspired line of books. Suspense, holiday and those with real life issues tend to be my favorite.

    I own at least 200 LI books but I'm always ready to add more.

    Please throw my name in the cat dish Ruthy!(I hope you are having fun with those precious grans :)

  21. Wow, what a great day to stop by at Seekerville. I've missed a whole week!!!!!!!!! That makes me cranky -- but this post perked me up.

    Isn't it interesting how we don't get tired of tried and true themes? Like amnesia? Recently read Covert Christmas by Hope White and just loved it. She put such a different spin on it. So much fun to see the unique twists different authors put on the same theme.

  22. Emily, thanks for being with us in Seekerville today.

    Thanks, too, for the great story suggestions! I'm taking notes and brainstorming ideas for my next LIS. Perhaps an amnesiac with baby (or kittens, to keep Ruthy happy), set in the West at Christmas. YES!!!

    Could I also throw in a lobster fisherman? Hmm...

    This blog needs to go viral. Such great info! I gave a talk about writing for LIS at GRW's Moonlight and Magnolias Conference last week. Need to contact all who attended with an update to ensure they read this post!

    So proud of Love Inspired Books!

  23. Emily Krupin, if you see the other Emily--Emily Rodmell, my wonderful editor--around the office today, please give her a hug for me!

  24. I find myself reading a lot of Love Inspired books. This week so far I have finished two of them. I am also reading a couple more.

    Now I will know what to write.

    Have a great weekend everyone

  25. Ruthy, thanks for hosting Emily!

    She's wonderful!!!!!!! (And worthy of 7 exclamation marks!)

    In honor of Emily, Love Inspired Books and Seekerville's Seventh Birthday, I've brought 7 Pecan Coffee Cake Rings...and a huge pot of grits!



    This blog is GOLD this morning, and I am heading right on over to let people know on FB and Twitter!

    I had a pretty good idea about a number of your preferred categories such as Cowboy stories, Amish, and babies (oooo ... Amish babies must REALLLY do well!! ;)), but you threw me a curve with "amnesia" stories, but it makes sense. Now ... if I can just remember it ... ;)

    Great blog, Emily -- thanks SO much for sharing!!


  27. Emily, love the photos too...especially the Killer Voices conference room shot! A keeper, for sure!

    Mary Curry, are they fighting over your submission that went to sale?

  28. Yay! Love the Love Inspired editorial team. I too have thousands of books which MUST be packed each time we move... thankful it isn't too often! - Jenna Victoria

  29. I LOVE Love Inspired books....reading 6 this week! And I want to be in that cat dish for more books!

    Ruthy, have a safe trip and enjoy those grans!!

  30. Thanks Emily and Ruthy and thank you for the opportunity to have our names inside the cat dish once more. As an aspiring writer I so appreciate the opportunities Love Inspired offers. As I reader, I feel the same. Great authors and wonderful stories.

  31. I'm an amnesia fan, if I remember correctly. The heroine/hero doesn't know what they're guilty of and I get to hang on for the ride.

    This post makes me want to go write 7 different stories right now.

    Please toss my name into the hat. So excited to have received Down to the Wire by Laura Scott thanks to Seekerville!

  32. Thank you for sharing this inspiring list, Emily. I was especially excited to see the theme of my current WIP on your list. I better get off the Internet now and get back to work. :) And thank you, Ruthy, for the bagels. Someday this West coast girl needs to taste a NYC bagel in real life. :)

  33. I love the Love Inspired books, especially the suspense line! This was an informative post that is sure to be helpful to budding writers.

  34. Emily, I love LI books and most of all when they have a cowboy in them! Thanks for sharing with us. I totally identify with the list of things you do in your free time :)

  35. I have found myself reading more and more of the Suspense and Historical lines recently, and I usually read the "regular" LI line because that's what I want to write for. And boxes of books? You should see our attic, the small bookcase outside our bedroom door, and our bedroom! I hope to get up there to reorganize and--yeah, we'll see. ;-) I get tired of rummaging through boxes and bags, trying to figure out "What am I going to read next?"

    Thank you for the list of what you're looking for, Emily. A handy list, to be sure!

  36. Thanks for sharing the kinds of stories you guys love to get, Emily! I love to read most of those story themes, too.

  37. Emily, it's a delight to have you as our guest today, and thanks for sharing your themes list! I may have to take another look at my idea file and see if anything fits. I've had the germ of an amnesia story in the back of my mind for years but have never gotten around to developing it.

    Hmmm . . .

  38. Thanks for giving us a bit of insider information as to what LI is seeking, Emily. This is great! I loved #7 since I'm always looking to read something totally different.

  39. Emily, welcome to Seekerville. I love that poster about reading books. Thanks for the list of storylines you enjoy.

  40. College aged characters! Now that's a new one. Wow, sort of exciting to think about as well.

  41. Emily, thank you for sharing your SEVEN great themes. I love all of them and especially those with small town warmth.

    I'm grateful that the Love Inspired lines accept unsolicited manuscripts giving HOPE to writers. Yay!

    Ruthy, I'm giving the kittens a pat as I toss my name in the sparkling cat dish. Thank you!

  42. How did a gal from a tiny town on Long Island end up as an editor in New York City???

  43. Hi Emily,

    I love your list! And I definitely see a few themes that intrigue me for future storylines. I've always scratched my head at secret baby storylines, but that makes me want to write one! And I love the idea of coming up with something unique for the line. Those stories always shine.

  44. Hello, everyone. Great to be here—you are all so welcoming!

    In Love Inspired Historical, characters generally marry younger. In most historical periods, someone who was thirty and unmarried would be considered on the shelf! For Love Inspired and Love Inspired Suspense, our readers tend to connect with the idea of someone in the younger stage of life—characters figuring out who they are, what they’re doing with themselves, and having unexpected love be part of that.

    I attribute it to a lot of initial internships and perseverance! 

    Keep those questions coming!!

  45. Good morning, Emily, and thank you for sharing your list us. Many of those are books I enjoy reading too!

  46. Thank you, Emily for this list. Some ideas started swirling around in my mind. Maybe I'll experiment with a couple of them.

  47. Welcome, Emily!! I laughed out loud at your moving boxes photo!! :) :)

    Thanks for the great ideas themes! You got my brain clicking.

  48. LOL, Jen/Artist Librarian!! Your mom is so sneaky. I love it!! :)

  49. Kav, we've missed you! Glad to see you.

  50. Yeah, Tina. The college age characters got my mind clicking, too since I'm such a huge fan of YA and new adult. I'm curious if they'd be interested for contemporary LI.

  51. Sherida, I agree! That's how I sold to LI before I had my agent. It was through a contest! :)

  52. Emily, wonderful to have you in Seekerville today! Thanks for sharing seven themes you like to see in stories! You've given me some great ideas. I'm proud to write for Love Inspired Historical and excited to work with you!


  53. Hi Emily, it's always nice to get a refresher on what LIS is looking for. :) I get asked that question quite frequently so it's great to be able to post the website and say, "Here, go read this. An actual Love Inspired Editor wrote it!" :)

    I love the fact that LIS is open to quirky and different careers. The story I just finished and am getting ready to send off to Emily R has a bullrider hero and a rodeo clown (bullfighter) heroine. It was super fun to write that. So, all of you who were wondering--quirky is good! LOL

    Thanks again for stopping by and sharing.


  54. Hi Emily,

    That's a great list! If I wasn't already busy with revisions for my next LIH (cowboys, orphans and a crusading school teacher), and thinking up my next LIH (Amish), I'd want to try one of your suggestions. :)

    By the way, I love writing for Love Inspired. I hope every aspiring writer reading this is encouraged to submit a story to you!

    And Ruthy, please put my name in the cat dish!

  55. Emily, thanks for sharing the fun photos! And the list of things you like to do in your free time. Must be fun to be on the other side of the desk and buy books. Almost as much fun as selling them. ;-)

    Any themes you don't want to see?


  56. Lynette, your story sounds like great fun! I can just picture these the hero bullrider and the heroine clown. She has to save his life, right?


  57. New York bagels and grits for breakfast--only in Seekerville! I brought apple fritters, my favorite carbfest.


  58. Happy Friday, Emily! It's always wonderful to hear directly from LI. I'll chime in with the other writers here -- you have ideas swirling in my mind. Love the amnesia idea! And I've always wanted to write a holiday book. Of course, Amish is terrific.... :-)

  59. Emily what a great list.

    I wrote a book where the heroine had amnesia once.


    Seriously it's not what she says, it's what she THINKS. I just kept letting her KNOW things and REACT to things as herself...with all her prior life experience affecting her actions.
    But that was WRONG of course, at least in a conscious sense, maybe she could Unconsciously react as herself but consciously she can't tap into any old hurts, old anger, old loves, her taste in anything, food, clothes...I kept FORGETTING.

    Ironic in an amnesia story, huh?

    So finally I just gave her her memory back to clear that off my plate.

    ps I LOVE amnesia stories.

    But they're TRICKY.

  60. PS my heroine with amnesia story has never been published.

    I LOVED IT TOO. Gothic.

    Very fun.

    Now why would she go up in the attic when she knew one of the people in the house was a KILLER> And yet I needed her in that attic, but I couldn't bear to have her be an idiot either.

    I sat and played with it and laughed. My family thought I was insane.

    They pretty much still do.

  61. Hi Emily, I'm happy to meet you here today. Thanks for sharing your wish list, I'm with you, I love those cowboys and amnesia stories.

  62. This comment has been removed by the author.

  63. On the road! Emily I'm intrigued by the college aged H/H too... I'm thinking grad school and mystery virus in the lab...

  64. JANET:
    Hi--Great to see you here, and to be working with you more in the future! For Love Inspired Historical we’re most interested in acquiring Westerns and Americana right now. We’ll consider other time periods but they might be a harder sell. For Love Inspired Suspense, I recommend avoiding terrorism plotlines.

  65. By the way, I’m very eager to acquire my first brand new author, so please feel free to submit directly to me!

  66. Thanks Emily! Americana is where I feel at home.


  67. Hi Emily, Thanks for great list of themes. I'm a reader, reviewer, and a want-to-be writer. I appreciate Ruthy saying that the LI accepts unsolicited manuscripts from people that don't have agents. I probably read that before but it's a nice reminder.

    For now, Ruthy put my name in the cat bowl. If you happen to see a piece of paper moving around, it'll probably be the one with my name. I am allergic to cats. Achoo!

    Emily, thanks for the work you do with the LI authors to make their books even better. I love LI books. Take care! God bless!

  68. Hi Emily and welcome to Seekerville, What an interesting list. It always amazes me how those themes trend in and out. I'm happy to see them in. :)

    Thank you for taking the time to join us today in our celebration. We have some terrific LI authors among us. Have fun today.

    And thanks for all the book giveaways. You folks are always so generous.

  69. Hi, Emily! Hi, Ruthy!

    How fun! Love the pics!

    I do have a question.

    Are there any plots you're definitely NOT looking for? Any overused?

    Thanks for sharing your awesome wishlist with us!! :)

  70. Hi Emily! Thanks for sharing your list. It's always fun to see what different publishing lines are looking for. I personally love coming up with quirky careers for people in my stories. Gives me an excuse to research!

    Have a wonderful day!

  71. Hi Emily!
    working on my Killer Voice ms edits Shana suggested before I resub - but I do so enjoy seeing this list to jump start a future idea once I polish this one. The heroine in my ms is college age.hmmm... better get crackin' on Shana's suggestions.

    If a road pit-stop (as you travel to NC) brings you remotely close to the Virginia Beach area, I would LOVE to try to find a way to actually meet you in person and give a big hug. So close, and yet - so far... *sigh*

    Great info post. Golden!!!

  72. Hi, Emily!!

    Thanks for your interesting post!! Loved reading about the books the Loved Inspired lines are interested in.

    Thanks for the opportunity to win some wonderful books!!


  73. Hi Emily,

    How fun to see what types of stories you're looking for! I can't remember the last time I read an amnesia story. Sounds interesting!

  74. I'm late, I'm late.

    Went to bed early last night. Then internet has been hateful today.

    But there's fresh coffee.

    Thank you for, Emily, for sharing the kind of stories you are particularly interested in seeing. That's good info for published and unpublished alike.

  75. Thanks for giving us the scoop on what you like to see. Please enter me into the drawing for the books. Sounds like a great giveaway.

  76. So many ideas. Thank you.

    I'm really grateful for the e-Readers--lots of books without the storage issues. Plus, I can file them, buy at will, and read in the dark!

    A little piece of reader heaven.

  77. Hi, Natalie! I mentioned in an earlier comment that for Love Inspired Historical we’re most interested in acquiring Westerns and Americana right now. We’ll consider other time periods but they might be a harder sell. For Love Inspired Suspense, I recommend avoiding terrorism plotlines. As for themes we’ve seen a lot of lately, we have a great inventory of search and rescue stories at the moment. They’re fantastic! But I also encourage you to shake things up and surprise me.

  78. All right, everyone. So glad we could spend the day together. It's been fabulous!

    Remember--Feel free to submit your manuscripts directly to me. I can't wait to read all of your amazing stories!

  79. Hi, Emily.

    Great tips for all of us! Thanks for sharing. Your openness to unique ideas is exciting. As a reader, I can't wait to see what others send. As a writer, I'm sticking to my guns...and cowboys. ;)


  80. Emily, thanks for coming to Seekerville today! Your tips for LI are really helpful.

  81. Thanks again for all of your comments! You sure know how to make an editor smile.

  82. Emily, I loved reading all the different types of stories you're looking for. Very fun! It's so easy to get caught up in the types of stories that I write that i forget there are all kinds of other stories out there. Thanks for listing some of your faves!

    And Ruthy, thanks for providing the bagels. Since I eat GF in real life, I'll enjoy a couple New York bagels. With cream cheese (another no-no for me). :)

  83. Ruthy feeling a little discouraged. the trip to the neurologist im still digesting he thinks it could be muscular and wants me off one of the meds. This scares me as this is the one that keeps the pain down. the other med didn't help much before. I am scared to go back to pain at 8 out of ten with the nail gun feel. He is writing to my dr so he may have ideas for her to try will see if she has it by Wed. I over did it yesterday and the pain is up today but I have a few new clothes I needed a pair of sandles and runners also for summer so am fairly well set now unless I see another pretty dress.

  84. I'm also a reader, not a writer but I enjoyed those plots. I liked the list and could add a couple of my own!! I hope I can win some of those extra books you are giving away :) I love, love, love LOVE INSPIRED books!!!!!

    So glad you guys are having a birthday party here on Seekerville!

  85. I love a good amnesia story! Haven't found an idea that will work yet...One of these days :)

  86. Sherri, I used to have a good amnesia story. But I forgot what it was. (I just couldn't resist!)

  87. Loved this post! Good to see the tried and true themes are still popular!

    Fitting that I got my Love Inspired cover today and I LOVE, LOVE it.
    Here's a link to my Facebook page. It should be the latest status update if you want a peek. (I'm not sure if this will be a live link. If not, cut and paste!)

  88. Great post! And since I'd love to be an LIS author I'm taking notes. Thanks for sharing.

  89. Now that everyone is gone I can admit...I have no idea what a dirty water dog is and frankly, I don't want to know.

  90. Thank you for sharing this with us, Emily! I'm late chiming in today in Seekerville, but am on a weekend trip to our coast (thankfully brought my laptop along, LOL).
    Great theme suggestions---a few in particular really have my mind rolling!
    Thank you again!
    Blessings, Patti Jo

  91. @ Ruthy - Will do --and yes, if you're ever in Hawaii, let us know. =)

  92. Thanks for the list of what you like to see, Emily. Most of the items on it weren't too surprising, since I see those elements in the wonderful stories the LI lines publish. I liked your last item best. Surprises can be such fun for readers, but they're fun for writers, too. We get the thrill of dreaming up the stories, writing them and hoping the faithful LI readers enjoy them. We also have the privilege of working with the LI editors. You ladies are awesome! Thanks for all you do to make sure our stories are the best they can be.

  93. Emily, thanks for the list of what you'd like to see!
    Ruthy, put my name in the kitties bowl, and give them some extra lovin'. They may turn their noses up at first, but they'll get over it.

  94. As a reader I love coming across story lines that constantly surprise & delight.

  95. As usual, I find the blog a day late...slow computer? Dunno. Whatever. I gained so much "Inspiration" from the seven suggestions, I just had to copy and print them out for future reference. Now I know where to start sending my Speedbo 2014 story. Thanks so much, and please put my name in the drawing.

  96. Emily, I was so excited to see that you're interested in stories set in foreign locations. In fact, I backed up and read the sentence again just to make sure I had it right. I love books set in foreign locations and set my first one, partially, in Ireland. You made me happy this morning!

  97. Oops. I didn't mean to post the last post anonymously! I'm Hope Toler Dougherty.

  98. Would love to have my name thrown in the cat dish ! What a great birthday present!

  99. Have some Love Inspired in my TBR pile. Will have to pull them out to see if they fit my writing style. Thanks for the tips, Emily.

  100. I am with you, anything books with a coffee! I would love to win more though, like a box full... :)

  101. I read these posts and it makes me want to write. But I feel like I don't have the time. Thanks for the encouragement and the giveaway. Happy 7th Year.


  102. This is what I was trying to communicate on Tina's post.

    As you can see this editor loves amnesia stories. But at conferences I heard amnesia stories were out. Editors and agents got tired of them like the editor who previously visited here and hated stories that started with someone coming back home on a train, etc.

    So it's not about which plot device you're using, but it's all about how well it's written then finding an agent who enjoys it as well.

    As much as I enjoy stories that start with characters coming back home, I don't enjoy amnesia stories.

    But it shouldn't be made into a new rule since people enjoy different things.

    That's what I was trying to communicate.

    Unless you are targeting a particular agent or an editor, you should follow your heart and write a great story. :)

  103. By the time you finish your book, editors will be looking for something else.

    I wouldn't follow trends.

  104. What a great list!!! I resemble #1, #4, #5, #6, #.... lol

    So glad to have you in Seekerville, Emily!

  105. Thanks for the fabulous list. I attended a Storycrafter's Retreat this weekend with Susan May Warren - My Book Therapy. I've got new tools to help with character and plot development. So excited to get writing on the ideas that have been in the pages of my journals.