Jaycee DeLorenzo’s New Adult contemporary romance The Truths About Dating and Mating has an attention grabbing title, a terrific cover, and a fun premise. She tells us a bit about her book as well as its path to publication. She also touches upon the idea that the increased interest in self-publishing (from both writers’ and readers’ perspectives) had a hand in propelling New Adult from a category of fiction no one had ever heard of to one that is now making headlines. Jaycee is also an original founder and contributing blogger for NA Alley. Welcome, Jaycee!
If millions of people were reading young adult books…
Why wouldn’t they want to read about what comes next?
Some of the best advice I ever received was this: “Write the story you want to write. The rest will follow.”
It just so happened that the story I wanted to write was about two college friends who had always been just that – friends. Neither had unrequited feelings for the other, and both were confident and comfortable within the existing dynamic of their friendship. Then, I wanted to flip the switch and send them on a journey where they had to deal with their own insecurities, fears, and doubts while making the decision of whether they should act on their new feelings or try to maintain the friendship they’ve always known. And what could be more ironic than having two people who give advice to their peers on their bi-weekly college radio show, The Truths about Dating and Mating, be unable to follow their own advice when they fall in love with each other?
So, I wrote The Truths about Dating and Mating.
At the original time I finished my first draft, I wasn’t even thinking of publication. But, after a three year break in which I got married and had two children, I started reworking the material and looking into publication options. The overall consensus was that there was no market for a story about college students. Some betas who had read the story suggested aging it down or up, but I didn’t see how I could do that. My characters were still flexing their wings and trying to grow into their own skin and be comfortable with who they were.
So when I saw the contest put up by St. Marten’s press, I was excited. Finally, books about college students might have a place in traditional publishing! And then…nothing really came of it. There was a term for it – New Adult – but it didn’t seem to be going anywhere. For two years, this was the trend; small mentions of it here and there, but no real acceptance or known market for it.
That didn’t make sense to me. If millions of people were reading young adult books, why wouldn’t they want to read about what comes next?
In that same time period, self-publishing was starting to hit its stride. The stigma that came with it was beginning to fade, and books were actually getting recognition and taken more seriously. Better yet, books that would classify as New Adult were starting to make waves and get recognition.
While it may not be the way I always wanted to go, it suddenly seemed like a viable option. I still put out feelers to a few agents and publishers, and had interest in it – even one possible contract if I made changes (that I didn’t want to make) – but in the end, I decided that it made more sense for me to be in complete control of the entire process. And finally, after a long journey, I put my book out there into the wild and sold far-more copies than I ever thought it would. So, like the advice I received, I wrote the book I wanted to write, and the rest has followed; albeit in a different direction than I initially envisioned, but one that has offered what I dreamed of from the beginning: my book is being read.
More About The Truths About Dating and Mating
Spunky Italian coed Ivy Rossini likes to talk and push the boundaries. She gets to do both as she co-hosts Riordan College’s radio program, The Truths about Dating and Mating, alongside her lifelong best friend, Ian Hollister.
Being the only girl who cares to see beyond Ian’s bad boy reputation has its advantages, especially when he’s scaring off the jerks who just want to nail the campus sex-guru. It’s when he’s “protecting” her from the advances she welcomes that she wants to lob him over the head and tell him to butt out. But Ivy feels like she’s the one who’s taken a hit when Ian almost kisses her at a party. She knows she should feel relieved when he pulls away, so why is she disappointed instead?
What’s worse, Ivy’s now getting aroused by Ian’s slightest touch and can’t stop entertaining thoughts of a romantic future. But Ian doesn’t do relationships, and she’s not interested in anything casual. In the end, Ivy decides it’s best to keep her growing feelings a secret and hope they’ll pass. However, when Ian begins hinting at wanting to take things to the next level, she’s forced to decide if a chance at something more is worth risking everything they’ve built.
With their friendship and her heart hanging in the balance, can Ivy follow the advice she and Ian give their listeners – to communicate, be honest, and trust in themselves – or will insecurity, stubbornness, and pride ruin any chance of their relationship getting off the ground?
Where to buy
More About Jaycee
Jaycee DeLorenzo hails from Tucson, Arizona, on the outskirts of the Saguaro National Park – which she believes to be the most beautiful spread of desert in the world. By day, Jaycee is an English language teacher to elementary students. By night, she’s a wife, mother, writer, cover artist, website designer, and blogger. In her spare time, she enjoys reading, cooking, singing (very poorly), catching up on her favorite T.V. shows, and researching.
Where to find Jaycee online
So, readers, what do you think? Is it hard to practice what you preach when it comes to love? Why is that? Is your current beau your former best friend? How did you make the transition? Thank you, Jaycee, for guest blogging today!