Happy Valentine’s Day!

I am a member of various writing communities on twitter.

A host of one of the writing games came up with an ingenious one, to write a love letter to one’s work in progress.

Here’s what I came up with, except it’s in honor of all my works in progress and books:


Dear WIPs,

You keep me amused, excited, and enthusiastic to be with you and my characters on my journey. You keep my imagination working overtime.



P.S. I love how you have helped me find .


You can find me on Amazon: link.

Copyright Barbara James, all rights reserved.


Music and the Work in Progress

I might have mentioned that I’m currently using playlists on Spotify for my works in progress. In my books, I have tended to include references to the music that inspired me as I was writing. These are the songs that I thought might bring a scene full circle, but that is not always the case.

Sometimes a song inspires a scene, and it’s totally unexpected.

I’m at the gym a lot, I go to my local Planet Fitness. The gym’s management implemented a recent development of broadcasting music videos the patrons can watch on television screens. So when I’m not watching the news, I’m watching videos of the latest pop music.

I just love it. Sometimes I hear a song that draws me in some fashion. Perhaps it’s the name of the song, the melody, or the lyrics. Or all of the above. If the song appeals, I wonder whether it can fit into the Spotify playlist I have set up for each of my works in progress.

But when a song inspires a scene, it is as though I can’t get the song out of my head, because something about the song’s energy fits a scenario I imagine for my characters.

The latest source of my inspiration is one I can imagine will be the basis of the first chapter for the next work in progress. But I do not have the time to work on it now. I can only take notes and listen to Spotify.

My current hero and heroine are depending upon me, then my previous hero and heroine will be getting back to me soon.

I look forward to sharing my future updates.

Copyright Barbara James. All rights reserved.

An Author in Search of her Character

Laurens e book cover resized

The newsletter editors of my Romance Writers of America chapter urged us to submit character interviews. I had fun imagining an interview with the heroine from The Wedding Bet: Lauren.


I get up from my seat in the Starbucks at Penn Station. “Lauren, it’s so good to see you!” I give her a hug and step back to take in her black slacks, red jacket and blue scarf. “I just love the outfit!”

“It’s good to see you as well.” She touches the scarf. “It’s a gift from Annelise (heroine of Starting Over: Rick). She and Rick were in town. Denise (heroine of Going Home: Roger) lives in New London too, so we all got together during the Christmas holidays. Lots of kids running round. Chaotic, but fun. Can’t complain. We’re all doing fine. How have you been?”

“I’ve been fine, the family’s fine. I’ve been getting to know some new characters. And you?”

“That’s great! I like Facebook, it’s good for keeping in touch with everyone, so I’ll check for your updates. Don and I, we’ve been married several years. The babies are getting bigger and I’m doing nursing part time. Gives me more time with them.” She takes out her phone to show me some photos.

I take it and study a picture of her with her children. “I love it, they are so adorable.” I return the phone to her. “They’re with Daddy this afternoon?”

She nods. “I’m sure they’re having some adventures. He’s so busy, it’s good whenever he can have down time with them. We’re still going strong. He’s doing great, getting promotions.” She smiles at a photo of him. “I just love how much he enjoys being a dad. Our family life is such a blessing.”

“It’s like a Hallmark movie.”

“And you made it possible for us!”

“So which television show would most resemble your life?”

“Something like Black-ish, I think.”

“I can see it! So if we made a movie of your life, who would star?

“Idris Elba as Don, it goes without saying! I would love it if Kerry Washington were to play me.”

“She’d be recognizable.” I notice the book she placed onto the table. “What are you reading?”

“Michelle Obama’s autobiography. Her story is so relatable.”

“I agree. She really speaks to so many women’s experiences.”

“That’s what I really like about you as our author! Perhaps it comes from your training as a clergywoman. Whatever it is, you understand us, our experiences and needs. Everything that has been important for us in getting our happily ever after. Like, you’ve always respected our privacy, giving us the closed door bedroom scenes we prefer. Annelise, Denise and I, we call you our honorary auntie!”

“Thank you, sweetie. That’s so lovely to hear.”

She hugs me. “You’re always welcome.”

We get our drinks and continue chatting until it was time for her to catch her train back to Connecticut.

Copyright, Barbara James. All Rights Reserved.