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    Just a little Patience
    From Rod Stewart to Guns and Roses... earworms for everyone! hee sorry- syb

    After gentle nudging *g* Lisa Valdez has been kind enough to answer my question... where the heck is patience and what is taking so long!

    From Lisa...

    Hi Everyone,

    Sybil was kind enough to invite me to her blog so that I could have the opportunity to explain what the heck my problem has been with completing PATIENCE. Thank you, Syb, for this opportunity.

    So, here’s the deal: This past year has been really challenging for me. Besides some very heavy intrusions by life, the biggest problem I had with writing PATIENCE was that I was writing it while dealing with the unexpectedly strong response to PASSION. As many of you may know, readers were very vocal about PASSION and they basically fell into two camps—those who adored it and those who despised it. There was very little in-between. And while many of the discussion boards were taken up with long threads about PASSION, my email was also overflowing. Most of the email was wonderful, and some of you made me cry (((hugs))), but there was also “hate mail,” which I could never identify until I’d started reading—and like the compulsion I often feel to watch a bad movie till the end, I had to read those emails to the end. I know, so stupid! Anyway, the force of these two opposing opinions came down on me together and, suddenly, writing got really difficult.

    All at once, I felt a HUGE responsibility to all of you who had loved and adored PASSION. While I was so grateful that PASSION had fallen into your hands, I began to worry that you wouldn’t like Patience and Matthew’s story. I mean, they are very different characters from Passion and Mark, and the sensual angle is different as well. Perhaps, thought I, you just want another PASSION. And while I was tormenting myself with these thoughts, I did a completely ludicrous thing. I allowed the voices of my detractors to influence me as well. Lord, I kept thinking: if they hated PASSION, they’re going to stone me in the streets for PATIENCE. I started holding the characters back—I wouldn’t let them do what they wanted to do, or even think what they wanted to think. And when I did give them some leeway, I did so only with the greatest trepidation.

    But I don’t want to give the impression that I am this over-sensitive, delicate type, with fragile confidence and flimsy sensibilities. I assure you, that’s not me. It went more like this: I wake up excited to write this scene in which Matthew gives Patience this intense spanking that breaks down all her emotional barriers. But, as is my habit, I check my email before I begin to write. Well, there in my inbox is an email from a very angry reader. She calls me a misogynist and rants that I have no business writing romance for women as I so obviously hate women. She goes on to say that Mark is an “abusive rapist,” (I didn’t know there was any other kind) and that Matthew is equally as bad as he “beats” his mother. She ends her email by calling me a “disgrace to modern women.” –Okay, so suffice it to say, I did not write the spanking scene that day. Nor did I write it for many days after. Then, after more garbage came my way, I opted not to write it at all—even though it was a major turning point in the story. And that’s how it went.

    Well, you absolutely CANNOT write a book while afraid of it (especially a book like PATIENCE). You cannot! The manuscript was tepid, and half-hearted. And because I had left things out that I had suddenly feared readers would find too intense, Patience couldn’t even really arc as a character. I had completely robbed her of what she needed. And poor Matthew—I had cut him off at the knees as well.

    Anyway, slowly but surely, I began to face the fact that I had completely lost my way. There were many months of denial before I was able to finally face the truth—that I’d allowed some very sad, unfortunate people to crush me. This was a rather disturbing and painful realization. I mean, how could I have let that happen? But I also got angry about it and, finally, I had this “what-the-heck?/what-is-your-problem?” moment. And in that moment (or two), I got so fed up with myself and the whole situation that I knew I was done. And within a week or two, I felt like myself again—thank you, Jesus!

    So, having said all this, I apologize to all of you who loved PASSION and were generous enough to take time out of your busy lives to tell me so. I ought to have given you more of my trust. I ought to have trusted, as I did with PASSION, that if I loved these characters enough then many of you would too. And most of all, I ought not to have dishonored all of you, and myself, by allowing people who hate what I do to influence what I do.

    So, there you have it—the cliff notes to a very long and surprisingly intense personal struggle. I hope you’ll all hang in there for Matthew and Patience’s romance. I know I’ve tried your patience at this point, but I also know that the book coming out in May is far more passionate and honest than the one you would have purchased earlier. Thanks so much for listening. And thank you, Syb, for offering me the welcoming forum of your blog. Ciao, Lisa —Oh, and the spanking scenes are back! Yeah, there are more than one…

    Labels: ,

    1. Thanks, Lisa -- as one of the readers looking forward to Patience, I'm very, very glad you didn't hold back. That would have been more a disappointment than a delayed book.

      And it's a good lesson. Note to self: don't read hate mail.

      By Blogger meljean brook, at 11/09/2006 02:14:00 PM  

    2. Lisa ~ thanks for being so open and honest about the delays with Patience ~ it's a huge insight into the downside of sucess. Am sooo looking forward to Matthew & Patience's book and glad to read that you are back to self again.

      By Anonymous Willa, at 11/09/2006 03:32:00 PM  

    3. thanks sybil for having Lisa visit. And you too Lisa...thanks for the explanation.
      The only thing I can say is write how you feel. who cares what someone didn't like. As far as I can tell with romance readers, you can't please everyone, so why the heck try? I'm very much looking forward to this book. Loved that excerpt. xina

      By Anonymous Anonymous, at 11/09/2006 04:18:00 PM  

    4. Ditto what the other's have said. I Loved PASSION! And look forward to PATIENCE.

      I'll wait for a good book. No worries. Glad you've shaken off all the negativity and moved on to write your story, your way. :-)

      By Blogger Jaye, at 11/09/2006 04:51:00 PM  

    5. I'm glad you didn't end up listening to the naysayers. Those of us who loved Passion really loved it while those who hated it shouldn't have read it in the first place. It's not a book to everyones taste - as is no book. So you write what you have to write and don't let the negativity distract you from writing the book that you want to write. And thanks for letting us know what you've been going through.

      By Blogger Kristie (J), at 11/09/2006 09:17:00 PM  

    6. Hi Everyone,

      Thanks so much for your words of support! xoxo

      Meljean, NEVER read hate mail! Seriously--it will serve you not at all. I already have a deal with my husband that when PATIENCE comes out he's going to preview my email and delete anything horrid. One must protect oneself. :-)

      Hi, Willa. You're so welcome--I wasn't sure I should confess all my trials and tribulations. I hate whining, and revealing one's weaknesses is always dicey. But--what the heack--now that I've done it, I'm glad.

      Hey, Xina. I actually don't mind if some readers hate my book, I just wish some of them didn't feel the necessity to tell me so! I mean, sheeesh! :-) And you're absolutely right about not being able to please everyone. When I did a discussion of the Berkley Jove Author site, one of the comments was from a reader who appreciated the fact that Passion wasn't a virgin. This reader wasn't a big fan of "deflowering" scenes. Anyway, the very day that she posted her comment, I got an email from a reader who really enjoyed PASSION, but wanted to know if Patience could please be a virgin, because she really liked to read about a character who was experiencing sex for the first time. And, besides, "scenes with virgins (were) very sexy." She was actually very cute. Anyway, so there ya go...

      Hiya, Jaye! Yeah, me too! Thanks, doll.

      Ciao bellas,

      By Anonymous Anonymous, at 11/09/2006 09:26:00 PM  

    7. Finally. I'm so happy! Cannot wait for this book. It's been too long! I could scream! So happy!!!

      By Blogger romancelover, at 11/09/2006 09:38:00 PM  

    8. I'm glad that you have explained what happened and just know that it's okay. It's a lesson learned and now you have your husband who can weed out the e-mails that are negative.

      I actually find it weird that people feel the need to send their negative energy to someone else.

      So now you know, trust yourself!

      I will be buying Patience when it comes out.

      Hey, before your first book published you were writing alone in your home, now you have all these voices coming at you thinking they know better ;) Don't listen to them!

      Good Luck!


      By Blogger CindyS, at 11/10/2006 01:32:00 AM  

    9. I am so disappointed that there wont be a spanking scene. Not that I enjoy spanking scenes (actually I dont at all) but the way LV was going to use it sounded interesting.


      By Anonymous Anonymous, at 11/10/2006 11:20:00 AM  

    10. seton you didn't read all the way to the end...

      lisa sez:
      "Thanks so much for listening. And thank you, Syb, for offering me the welcoming forum of your blog. Ciao, Lisa —Oh, and the spanking scenes are back! Yeah, there are more than one"

      By Blogger sybil, at 11/10/2006 11:40:00 AM  

    11. Lisa, Love all your books, can't wait for Patience to come out.

      Happy Thanksgiving.

      By Anonymous Danielle D, at 11/10/2006 12:38:00 PM  

    12. Hi All,

      Romancelover--I'm so happy you're so happy! xoxo

      Hi Cindy--I find it very wierd, too. I also find the magnitude of anger that was leveled at me wierd--very wierd (and disturbing, to tell ya the truth). I mean, I NEVER intended to anger people. It never even occured to me that I would. And, while I've tried to draw some of my own conclusions about why this occured, I don't think I'll ever truly understand it. Which is probably for the best... --Anyway, like Rapunzel, I'm back in my tower, and I'm not letting my hair down for anyone! Unless, of course, it's my prince. :-) Maybe I'll just place a sign--Witches Need Not Call...

      Hi Seton--Syb's correct, the scenes are back!

      Ciao again bellisimas,

      By Anonymous Anonymous, at 11/10/2006 01:12:00 PM  

    13. Lisa,

      Thanks for the background and don't let the naysayers get you down. As another poster said, those people probably never should have read the book in the first place. I remember when I read the excerpt at the end of PASSION, I thought to myself how brave you are to go from the initial shock (for some readers) of PASSION to a decidedly darker (or so it seems) tone with PATIENCE. I, for one, like to read the occasional dark around the edges (though perhaps "dark" is not the correct word) sexual relationship and am looking very much forward to PATIENCE. As for the reader who was outraged that Matthew had hit his mother, well, she was so hateful that I wanted to hit her too!

      Anyway, can't wait for May and I'm so glad the spanking scene is back ;-)


      By Anonymous Trish, at 11/11/2006 07:12:00 PM  

    14. Hi Lisa,

      As you know I loved Passion and I am so glad you didn't cave in under pressure and not write Patience the way you wanted it to be! Listen to your heart and not your critics.

      Love and hugs, Beki K.

      By Anonymous Anonymous, at 11/11/2006 07:35:00 PM  

    15. I have a real problem with readers who want to stifle or control a writer.
      Why take a "salsa" flavored book and try to turn it into "vanilla" flavored!!
      If they want vanilla..then BUY vanilla.

      Best of luck to you Lisa

      By Anonymous Sheila in GA, at 11/13/2006 08:19:00 AM  

    16. Just wanted to say ... YIPPEE! to the May release date :) Can't wait for it. Also wanted to add I applaud your courage ... it took a great deal of it to explain your experience and the insight into the book delay is appreciated (and IMHO understandable). I will anxiously await Patience and Matthew's story.

      BTW - WOOHOO to the spanking scene or scenes as the case may be :)

      By Anonymous Anonymous, at 11/16/2006 09:07:00 AM  

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