Today is the birthday of Book 4 in my Murrells Inlet Miracles series, Capsized! If you enjoyed the previous books in the series, I hope you'll love this one too. However, if this is the book that led you to me as an author, you should be able to enjoy this book as a standalone as well. I’ve created quite a library now of inspirational romance novels and I’m enjoying it so much. It’s only because of you guys who love what I’m doing, and wait for each one, that I am able to live my dream.
I began writing Capsized in a hotel in Tennessee when my parents and I had evacuated our homes in Pawleys Island and Murrells Inlet, SC in the throes of Hurricane Florence. We were staying in beautiful Kodak, TN while our beach communities were getting pummeled with wind and rain. To fill the long days, I started writing. With the plotting help of some of my closest writer friends, I came up with this plot about Sadie, who you met in Book 1: Sanctuary, and her eventual hero, Jett. I made Sadie a daredevil, an extreme sport athlete, so of course, she needed someone with similar interests to give her a run for her money. I wanted an extreme sport that is beachy and settled on competitive yacht sailing.
Great! Except I’ve never sailed a sailboat. And I knew I would have to learn or else the story would fail. Errors in a fiction storyline pull an informed reader right out of the story. Some small “errors” are forgivable if they don’t affect the plot or the storyline. But writing a book about sailing and making mistakes about sailing basics is definitely not acceptable.
So I reached out and connected with three fantastic sailing experts. All three of these generous sailors were “volunteered” by people I know to help me with their sailing expertise. When I reached out to them for help I had already written about twenty pages with sailing content. I explained what I wanted from them – to correct all my technical errors. They read the sailing pages and wrote back with corrections, suggestions, ideas.
Consolidating all their feedback, I went back through the pages and made updates and sent them out again. I still hadn’t gotten it completely right, so they sent me back feedback again. Now, I feel confident that the sailing content is “right enough” not to be disruptive to the storyline. If there are still errors that remain, first of all, they’re entirely mine. And second, they don’t hurt the story.
So, my great thanks to my three sailors: Charity Monroe, Tim McKenney and Paul McNamee. I truly could NOT have written this book without you!
Another expert I need to mention is Tricia Martin. Tricia was my inspiration for Sadie’s character from Day One when I decided she would be a dedicated extreme athlete. I used to work with Tricia in my previous career, and one Monday she walked into work, full of her normal energy, and revealed to me that she’d just ran a marathon the day before. Instead of limping down the hall, or better yet, taking the day off to recover, she breezed in just like it was any other day. After expressing my shock at her physical fitness, she shared that she had made a goal to run a marathon in all fifty states. AND she was well on her way to completing it.
I called Tricia after I’d created Sadie. We talked about what is inside a marathoner’s brain and spirit to make her keep running, keep training, through the pain and the discomfort. I hope I did justice to Sadie’s marathon scene. A lot of it incorporated Tricia’s input.
So, sometimes it takes a “village” to write a novel and I’d like to thank the knowledgeable peeps from my village of dedicated athletes who helped me get this one right. Enjoy “your” book. And readers, hope you enjoy it too.