Great question! First, I write up a proposal, say, the first three chapters and a synopsis (much shorter summary of the story), which I send to my agent. She in turn sends it to my publisher (or submits it for me to a new publisher). In the best case, the publisher comes back with an offer to buy the book, which is always reason for champagne or at least sparkling water. After I sign the contract, I finish the book if I haven’t already. Then I turn the book in, and my editor and a copy editor go over the book with a fine tooth comb. The edited version comes back to me to review and add/delete scenes. Often the timeline has to be reviewed, or I have to correct mistakes I made with eye color (I’ve been known to change the hero or heroine’s eyes a few times). A funny edit to me involves pets. I have a habit of mentioning a dog or cat and then…forgetting about them for a while. Fortunately I have incredible editors who catch my mistakes! After my editor reviews my changes to the line edits, I get to look at the book one more time to clear up any remaining questions she may have. Then it goes back and eventually becomes the book you get to hold in your hands and read. As you can tell, it’s a team effort all the way!
FAQ Category: About Geri's Books
Besides the news portion of my website, my newsletter is always going to release when I have a new book out. Please make sure you’re signed up. I don’t want you to miss one bit of my news! And I often share favorite recipes and have giveaways included, like a chance to win a signed book.
To date, I have three series. The Whidbey Island series is set on the seventy-mile long island in Puget Sound. This Navy-inspired series was inspired by my editor asking me to come up with a book that showed an authentic slice of Navy life (with romance and suspense added in!). The Silver Valley PD series is set in south central Pennsylvannia with very edge-of-your-seat thrills, and sexy romance. The heroes and heroines are mostly from prior military or US government law enforcement experience. It’s a combination of real-life law enforcement issues along with a super-secret agency, the Trail Hikers. The Bayou Bachelors series is set in New Orleans, Louisiana and is my hottest series yet as the Boudreaux siblings find love against the odds of failed careers, financial ruin, international espionage, and the biggest un-wedding in New Orleans history (I may have exaggerated this a bit).
It depends—if it’s written as top-secret in my Silver Valley PD series, for instance, it’s fictional because the super-Secret government shadow agency I invented, Trail Hikers (called this as a cover in the Appalachian Trail community, see Her Christmas Protector, book one of the series), is completely fictional. In the Whidbey Island series I drew more on my actual Navy experiences, like the prologue for Navy Rescue. I’ve never been in a P-3C or other aircraft that had to ditch (thank God!) but I have earned my own flight hours as a Naval Aviation Observer and I spoke to aircrew who’ve been involved in ditches.
What is always authentic in all of my series is emotion—because we all have those, and they’re universal, right?
Yes and no. Silver Valley is based on the beautiful, picturesque part of Pennsylvania that my family has settled in after years of moves. But there is no town in Pennsylvania called Silver Valley. As you read the Silver Valley PD series you’ll notice several geographical points of reference that are in fact, real, and nearby my actual town. The Appalachian Trail, Gettysburg (historic Civil War battleground), Hershey, Harrisburg—and many more places are described. All persons, businesses, schools and the like are of course fictional and completely made up by my overactive imagination.
I’m so glad you asked because Christmas is my favorite time of year, aside from autumn when I can’t resist pumpkin anything. I’ve been lucky enough to have Christmas books for both my Whidbey Island and Silver Valley, PD series.
Navy Christmas is about a Gold Star family finding their way back to love over the holiday season.
An anthology, too! Coming Home for Christmas is an anthology with the novella Navy Joy, another Whidbey Island series story. An extra gift with this book is that it has three stories, all written by military vets to include Lindsay McKenna and Delores Fossen.