Original Character Novel Ideas

Further to my blog post – leaving aside turning my fanfiction into original character fic – if I were to write a completely new novel, set in a universe of my own devising, which would you be most interested in reading?


  1. jacci

    LOVE the dark angsty type of stories the best and you do it so incredibly well. If you can see into the very souls of these characters, i would love to see just how far you could take it with your own characters. All the stories i have re-read the most are just dripping with angst.

  2. McShepletGirl

    I eventually voted for a new BDSM universe novel…..simply because I just adore the universe so much!
    I.m pretty much certain I’ll enjoy anything and everything you come up with!
    (Oh and you know what I’m really looking for novel wise….and I’m sorely tempted to become slightly ‘stalker-ish’ and place a reply on every forum thread on this site with the same request!)

  3. Amets_Sorgin

    I just adored your NCIS Birth-Day, which as you know I would have loved you to continue, and as an original story I think you could do a lot with this universe. Plus the fact your conception of how vampires are created is new and in my humble opinion more credible than the traditional turning of people in vampires. London of course provides the ideal background.

  4. freak_in_corner

    I’d read all of them but chose the vampire one in the end because I thought your vampires were well thought out and orginal enough you could create your own vampire series : ) esp if there is bdsm undertones in there too

  5. tejas

    While vampires are, I believe, still selling well, I find them boring *except* when done in fic. Just over done for my taste. But, as I say, I think they’re still selling very well, so go for it if that’s what’s drawing you. The BDSM romcom, on the other hand, sounds *wonderful* and I think I’d love to read that one. :-)
    Whatever you choose, I do hope you’ll give traditional publishing a try before going self-pub as you mentioned in your blog. While self-pub can, apparently, be moderately lucrative, it’s not a particularly sound business plan for what you’re looking at. Unless you’re writing on the fringes that traditional publishing won’t touch, you’re in competition with their marketing machinery, not to mention all the other services they provide. You’re trad pub quality and you should go for it.

  6. taylorgibbs

    I couldn’t agree more about traditionally publishing (be it small press or NY/London press) over self publishing, at least at this juncture. I’m both under various pen names and have more books than I’ll admit to out there (Okay, I’ll admit to dozens)–some selling really well, others…well…notsomuch ;) You have so many resources at your disposal with  traditionally publishing, including the reputation of the publisher.
    Unfortunately, self pub has a stigma, which is sometimes unfair, and sometimes warranted, about editing, proofreading, formatting. And there are a lot of "experts" who have weeks of experience in the industry. When some publishers have decades, many have years and years.
    There are a lot of great pubs out there who have their pulse on what is selling and have for a long time (Ellora’s Cave, Loose Id, Samhain, Dreamspinner, Torquere, Total Ebound, Silver, etc.). Heck, Ellora’s Cave has racked up multiple NY Times Best Sellers in Ebook.
    You are most definitely and assuredly in writing style, in talent, in plotting, in pacing, as good as any other erotica/erotic romance author out there, and, quite frankly, heads and shoulders above most.
    Having said that, one of my major weaknesses is law enforcement undercover, so I would lean toward that.
    BUT…there also are not very many BDSM sorts of universe stories out there. Most of the ones I’ve read simply haven’t captivated m or struck a chord in world building.
    And your version of vampires is fresh and new, no easy feat ;)

  7. tejas

    Oh, god, yes. Do beware of “experts” who have *so* much experience you could count it on the fingers of one hand. Newbies tend to think they know all and whatever they did first is the only way it can be. While I haven’t been publishing for as long as TG, I’ve been in the industry for over a decade and in that time I’ve learned enough to know not to burn my bridges. If you do go self pub, please consider doing it under a pseudonym that isn’t linked to your real name. For a writer of your caliber, you can break into traditional publishing and that’s where the big money is. We hear about the odd self-pub person who “makes it big” but that’s the point. They’re the odd man out. Six figure trad pub contracts happen far more often than six figure self-pubs. But being self-pub is not something to put in a cover letter to an agent or editor – it can be the death knell for a career. Which doesn’t mean don’t do it if you want to, but protect your real name from being associated with it. That leaves you open to other marketing opportunities down the road.

    Just remember, writing is an art, until you finish the story. Once it’s finished, you have to take of your paint-stained beret and put on your three piece suit and sell that sucker.

  8. Xanthe

    I like dark and angsty too Jacs! LOL! Although I dunno – i like all the genres I write in really. I think I’d cover the entire spectrum eventually with OC novels – even if I started out with a lighter one, I’d inevitably go dark at some point.

  9. Xanthe

    Thanks McShepletgirl! I love the BDSM universe too – that’s why this is such a hard decision!

  10. Xanthe

    Thanks Amets :-)
    I’m never sure WHAT the traditional means of turning folks into vampires is – I always get quite confused by it and often it isn’t really shown. I just liked the idea it involved feasting and sexy times *g* as well as an exchange of blood!
    I really like what I have in mind for that novel – in fact it’d probably be three novels *g*. Especially the London stuff which I’m quite excited by. It would be very different to the Birth-Day short story though – hugely different. I think I’m slightly daunted by the scope of it but maybe i just need to put my head down and plough on.

  11. Xanthe

    Thanks freak! I’m loving hearing people’s opinions on this :-) . I’m keen on the vampires too ;-). They’re not a ‘thing’ of mine particularly but they are FUN to play with! Mine tend to be quite BDSMy vampires too, obviously!

  12. Xanthe

    I’m going to look at what I’ve done so far with both the vampires and the BDSM romcom and see which one is calling to me most, Tejas.

    I must admit I’m not a vampire fan particularly – I don’t seek out those novels. Having said that, I’d quite like to have a go at my own take on them!

    I’m really interested in your opinion on trad publishing versus self publishing as I thought I’d go the self pub route but maybe not. I’ll have to ponder that – but first I need to write something! LOL!

  13. tejas

    The thing to remember is you lose nothing by trying to go traditional first. You *can* lose out on that avenue, or at least complicate it, if you’re known for self-pub first. Some publishers will go ahead with a self-pub author someone discovers and everyone’s happy. Others, however, won’t touch someone who’s gone self-pub first. That wall is slowly coming down but the “back away slowly” mentality is still pretty strong. Plus, I can’t stress strongly enough the value to *you* to jump through the trad pub hoops first. You learn a *lot* about the industry along the way and that puts you in a better position to make informed choices about your career path.

    And as someone else mentioned either here or on your LJ, if you self pub YOU are the marketing department, editorial department, art department, legal department, distribution and so on. If you’re going traditional publishing, all you have to do is write and then work with the editor (and your agent for novels) on making your work the best it can be. The publisher handles the rest (though you’d still want an IP lawyer to review your contract if you can afford it).

  14. ttregear

    Not that anyone navigates through the creative minefields without being influenced in any number of ways by what

  15. Xanthe

    It’s good to know people will follow me! I’ve decided against changing my fanfic stories to OC – for now at least. I really have too many OC fic ideas that I want to explore. I’m so glad to know that there are folks like you who are prepared to come with me into new territory, even if it’s just new fandoms, but hopefully OC fic too :-)

  16. tejas

    One thing that you might find yourself doing is “re-exploring” certain themes in original universes. But only, of course, if it draws you. So many of your fics have dealt with themes that would be kick ass in original work and likely sell like hot cakes. I do understand the lack of interest in going over old ground, though. I run into the same problem. “Been there, done that” means constantly wanting to cover new ground and push new boundaries.

  17. Xanthe

    I have to admit that is an issue for me. I also resent the fact that I’ve got a huge oeuvre of work but any OC fic I do will be judged alone, without that, as if that’s all I am. Because I know I won’t stay in one genre or style – I never have. I guess I’ll just have to build some work up gradually, over time.

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