Behind the Scenes and Plans Gone Awry

The Insecure Writer’s Support Group

The question for this month is:  Have any of your books been made into audio books? If so, what is the main challenge in producing an audiobook?

Because none of my books have been made into audiobooks yet, I’m unable to answer this question.

Instead, I’m bringing you up-to-date on what I’ve been working on considering I went silent in publications for a couple years.

In the beginning, there was going to be an anthology with seven authors, each writing a separate story. The continuing thread was going to be a car that is fished out of the community’s lake in Book 1 and then appeared in every book in some way.

We had planned on the characters being friends, former sweethearts, and classmates with a few newcomers who would become involved in new relationships.

At the time, only a few of us had published a novel-length romance. An editor told us that because we were all relatively unknown, no one would publish the book. The internet was relatively new and online publishing was not yet born. Writers were dependent on agents and traditional publishers.

Moving forward two decades later, I was cleaning and culling my electronic files and came across my story contribution that had been shelved.

That’s when I had a Eureka! moment. What if *I* wrote the entire series?

Hence, the Laurel Ridge Novella series was born. I kept the car thread, made the time period 15 days for the entire series, kept a few of the careers, and created my own characters and storylines.

The stories take place 12 years after high school graduation. Shattered Dreams, a second chance at love story for high school sweethearts Mason and Shelley who broke up right after graduation, was published in 2016.

Working on the entire series before publishing the second book to ensure there weren’t any timeline snafus took longer than I had planned, plus life got in the way multiple times and in multiple heart-wrenching ways.

Also, while working on the series, I was publishing other books, too:  an anthology I edited and published through Amazon for a writer’s group as a fund-raising event, reprinting three romances, publishing a screenplay, a cookbook, and most recently the first of a series of how-to books, Finding Your Fire & Keeping It Hot: Discover Your Why, Your Passion, Your Purpose in Life. I began teaching again, too.

But now, I’m happy to report that Burning Desire, Book 2 in the series is available for pre-order!!! To be published May 3, 2022.

Hopefully, if all goes well, Arrested Pleasures, Book 3 will be published two months after that, with a new book in the series published every other month, taking us into 2023.

I’m crossing my fingers!

Wish me luck!


Purpose: To share and encourage. Writers can express doubts and concerns without fear of appearing foolish or weak. Those who have been through the fire can offer assistance and guidance. It’s a safe haven for insecure writers of all kinds.

Posting: The first Wednesday of every month is officially Insecure Writer’s Support Group day. Post your thoughts on your own blog. Talk about your doubts and the fears you have conquered. Discuss your struggles and triumphs. Offer a word of encouragement for others who are struggling. Visit others in the group and connect with your fellow writer – aim for a dozen new people each time – and return comments. This group is all about connecting.


About Diana Stout

Screenwriter, author, former English professor
This entry was posted in #IWSG, Laurel Ridge novellas and tagged . Bookmark the permalink.

13 Responses to Behind the Scenes and Plans Gone Awry

  1. nancygideon says:

    Woo Hoo!! About time! Can’t wait to get that second installment and all the stories that follow. Way to hang in there, Diana!!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Beth Camp says:

    Perseverance furthers. Congratulations on your books in progress and those you’ve published. Yes, life gets in the way, but often, writing keeps us grounded as we face down challenges. Keep writing!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Diana Stout says:

      Thanks, Beth. You nailed it saying that writing keeps us grounded. I don’t know where I’d be mentally had I not been writing all these years!


      • Beth Camp says:

        Your love of writing, yes, keeps you connected in unexpected ways! I also enjoy writing challenges — for example, for National Poetry Month, write a poem a day. This keeps me writing while waiting for beta comments on my latest story. Be well and keep writing!

        Liked by 1 person

      • Diana Stout says:

        You, too, Beth! May both of us have more writing challenges as it keeps us growing, right? 🙂


  3. Congratulations on the second in the series! Aren’t you glad you kept that story?

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Kim Lajevardi says:

    Congratulations on the story!

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Diane Burton says:

    Congrats on not throwing away (or deleting) that story. So glad to see you’re keeping busy writing and publishing.

    Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s