My Journey to Fulltime Writing by Amy Jarecki
People often ask me about how I left the corporate mix master, set up my home office and started writing full time:
I had a pretty darned good job...at least it paid well. I earned it too, got an MBA, fought my way up the ladder by working 14 hour days and proving myself capable of doing anything my arrogant male counterparts could do. After nine hours of interviews I landed my "dream job" (yeah right) as a plant manager in the plastics industry, a job in the exclusive men's club.
To make an 11 year journey short, after battling unions, leading a plant to the top in EVERY metric known to man, taking another plant from a $6MM loss to a $6MM profit in one year, I was lumbered with a bad decision. The company I worked for purchased another factory that was making a loss and dumped it in my lap. I had six months to close it down and bring the business into my plant...and start making a profit on sales negotiated with a losing margin. By the end of the six months, we had turned the corner and were making ground, though my margins had not made the miraculous leap that the company had hoped for. All of the sudden this golden girl started getting her ass kicked...for a bad decision from corporate. DON'T MESS WITH ME!
During this horrible time in my life, wondering if I was going to get fired, my (3rd MS) first book, Boy Man Chief, got published. I'd also lived frugally for years and built up my savings. I got another couple of book contracts. About a year ago, my husband and I put our heads together and decided we'd take a chance and become a one-income family while I took the big leap and write full time.
Since then, I’ve received contracts to published four books with a small press, and in 2013, I signed with my agent, MacKenzie Fraser-Bub of Trident Media. Working with her, I have decided to be a “hybrid” author with some self-published titles in the mix. I plan to release five new novels in 2014:
February 17 – Captured by the Pirate Laird
April 28 – The Highland Henchman
June 30 – Beauty and the Barbarian
October 2 – Rescued by the Celtic Warrior
December 18 – Celtic Maid
I couldn't have done this when I was younger, but with an empty nest, I can follow my dreams. I'm still working 14 hour days, but I'm doing something I love.
My advice to you? Find what you love to do and then find a way to make it happen.
~Write on friends!
Quick Summary of Virtue by Amy Jarecki
Sheltered, raised in rural Utah, Zoe Marshall has never heard of the Mayan Prophecy of the Golden Goddess—but she’s about to.
At the moment she’s thrilled to have landed her dream job dancing on a cruise ship where she meets Belizean Gabriel AhKin. The sizzling bartender stirs her passion.
When the ship docks in Belize, Zoe disappears—spirited into the bowels of a Mayan cult led by a reclusive fanatic. When the madman sees her, he divines Zoe is the Golden Goddess. She is “the one” to fulfill the prophecy. Now Gabriel’s driving obsession is to save the woman who’s captured his heart.
Read an Excerpt from Virtue by Amy Jarecki
The first time the hero sees the heroine:
Long blond hair fluttered with the breeze, legs that wouldn’t stop, and a body so well proportioned, he’d only seen the likes in swimsuit editions of Sports Illustrated.
She looked his way and his breath caught. He quickly glanced down, busying himself with the glasses. Gabriel’s heart thundered in his ears as she approached.
“Hi,” she said, her American accent friendly, not bitchy like other incredibly beautiful tourists he’d encountered. “You think I could get a Diet Coke?”
Gabriel looked up. She smiled, white teeth, eyes that reflected the sea, flawless skin. “Ah. Sure.” He reached for a glass, one of the fancy plastic tumblers. He scooped in some ice and grabbed a toothpick umbrella, garnishing it with a lime and a red maraschino cherry. Holding up her special drink, he grinned. “Why diet?”
She lowered her extraordinarily long lashes. “I’m a dancer—always watching my figure, you know.”
“You’re a dancer on the ship?”
She took a sip. “Uh huh. Arrived last night.” When she leaned in, he caught a delicious fragrance like rain falling on orange blossoms. “I’m pretending I’m lost and taking a little self-guided tour on my way to the theater. I thought I’d have a look around before spending who knows how many hours tied to the stage.”
“Off to rehearse, huh?”
“Yep. Had to learn two shows in a week.” She pointed to her white flip-flops. “I’m wearing these to air out the blisters on my toes.”
He glanced down, but only made it as far as her well-muscled, slender thighs. Perfection. “Sounds painful.”
“It’ll be all right.” She leaned closer with the most adorable smile he’d ever seen in his life. “Know what?”
Gabriel hoped drool wasn’t draining out the corner of his mouth. “What?”
“The lead dancer is leaving the show after this tour, and I’ve been picked for the fan dance.”
God in heaven, why did that not surprise him? He’d choose her for any spotlight dance. He’d pick her just to stand center stage for hours on end. You want to drape those pegs across my bar so I can stare at them all day? Holy mother, she could do anything she wanted.Connect with the Author
Before college, I was a showgirl. I toured—singing and dancing my way around the world in a review called Follies on Broadway. Several years later, I dreamed up the plot for VIRTUE after I took a cruise to Belize...
How cool would it be to write a romantic suspense about a dancer who falls in love with a hot Belizean man and ends up in more trouble than Indiana Jones?
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