the next great “Project”?

So here’s a little secret most authors don’t talk about—I’m currently flying with out a net.  Out of work.  No longer under contract.

The last book I turned in was the last book I was contractually obligated to write.  And while I’m rather enjoying the sensation of not being under deadline for a change, it’s never smart to wait too long before going after that next sale.  The distance between actively published & unpublished, employed & unemployed is entirely to short & precarious in this business, sad to say. :nowait

Luckily, I had a lovely conversation with Editor C yesterday.  After the delightful turn of events that put ON THE VERGE OF I DO on the USA Today bestseller list, they definitely want to see more Harlequin Desires from me.  And I got the feeling “the sooner, the better” was being strongly implied. :adevil2

We batted around a few ideas for what my next USA Today bestselling book should be  :howyoudoin & I’m especially keen on doing some connected books.  My very own author-driven mini-series (think Maureen Child’s “Kings of California” as opposed to an editor-driven, multi-author continuity such as “Dynasties: The Kincaids”), which I’ve never done before with my Desires.  Oh, I’ve done a couple of loosely connected books, but nothing that got its own this-is-part-of-a-series flash on the cover.  And I think I want a this-is-part-of-a-series flash on my cover. :happysun

And while I may not be the fastest writer in the world, I can be a pretty fast thinker.  Once my brain starts rolling in the right direction, I can come up with a story idea fairly quickly.

So here’s something I came up with (& really kind of like—not that I’m biased or anything :patrick ) & just sent off to Editor C.  I’m eager to hear what he thinks, but am curious about what you guys think, too.


Zoe, Lily, and Juliet Zaccaro are three sisters taking the fashion world by storm in this trilogy of passionate, provocative Harlequin Desires by Heidi Betts, set in the high-powered, high-price world of haute couture.

Book 1Project: Runaway Heiress

Her older sisters might think she’s crazy, but Zoe Zaccaro knows something’s rotten in Denmark. There’s no other way a rival fashion house can be scooping her designs before they hit the runway. So without a word to her family, she sneaks off and lands a job as the personal assistant to the CEO of the competing company.

Zoe never expected her new boss to be quite so charming or attractive, though—or that she’d have to spend quite so much time alone with him in very close quarters. And falling for him definitely hadn’t been part of her plan.

Book 2Project: Runaway Bride

After hiring the best of the best private investigator to track down her missing youngest sister, Juliet Zaccaro finds herself engaged to one man, but pregnant to another. And there’s no way she can walk down the aisle carrying a child that doesn’t belong to her groom.

Needing time to think, to figure out what to do, Juliet follows in her younger sister’s footsteps and takes off without a word. But it’s hard to get lost when the best of the best private investigators is on your trail, and when this time, his mission is personal.

Book 3Project: Runaway Groom

Wealthy, bubbly middle sister Lily Zaccaro is known for two things—her Dazzle line of fabulous designer footwear and partying until the sun goes down. She goes through men like allergy sufferers go through tissues. But there’s only one man who’s ever truly captured her heart.

When Lily find out her high school sweetheart is engaged to be married, she knows she can’t let him go through with it. Not until they’ve had a chance to put the past to rest. But since she’s pretty sure he won’t talk to her willingly, she may have to resort to a little something called kidnapping.

I’ve got to admit, I’m a big fan of all those fashion reality shows on TV, like Project Runway (where do you think I got the title ideas?), The Fashion Show, & Fashion Star.  So I think it would be a blast to write some Harlequin Desires revolving around that kind of setting.  I can also see some seriously sexy covers on these books, with heroines blinged out in some seriously sexy dresses & accessories. :eeee

What do you think Editor C will say about that idea, hm? :scratchhead


11 Comments  •  Comments Feed

  1. Donna says:

    I’d buy and read them. And I’ve never watched Project Runway. Keep writing. There is always self pubbing.

  2. Mary Kirkland says:

    I’ve never watched project runway, I’ve seen it on the schedule but wasn’t interested. I do however like the thoughts on these books. I would definitely buy and read them.

  3. Diana says:

    Please keep writing,I’ll read them all if you write them. Include some humor of yours and they will be perfect.

    • Heidi says:

      Thanks, Diana!

      I definitely stick humor in all of my books. In the Desires, it can’t be blatant, over-the-top, LOL humor (like my knitting or vampire books), but I definitely sneak funny stuff in all the time. :happysun

  4. Heidi says:

    You guys don’t watch Project Runway? :happysad Oh, I love it. Mostly for the design challenges & creativity stuff…I love to see each designer’s vision & how outfits come together. Of course, I also end up thinking the judges are crazy half the time. They praise the worse-looking clothes & poo-poo the ones I’d buy in a second. :Cukoo

  5. Kathleen O says:

    And we have a winner… :thumbsup You can bet..when those books come out, I will be in the line to purchase them… :cheer
    Keep those little fingers typing along…. :cool

    • Heidi says:

      Do you watch Project Runway & such? I just know fashion is a hot topic right now, & I like to see the creative angle to all of that, esp. when the designers are forced to think outside the box. :scratchhead

      P.S. I have not forgotten about your Monthly Mystery Prize win from the HappyBooker loop. I’m a little behind, but do have something sitting here for you, so I’ll get it out soon, I swear. :bubble

  6. Ruth Chestnut says:

    Sorry Heidi, just not a Project Runway person. As to your books, I hope Editor C gives you the green light. I would definitely buy them. :chickendance :happysun

    • Heidi says:

      Well, I appreciate that, Ruth! :happysun And you won’t have to be a Project Runway (or any other fashion show) fan to read these. They’d be based on fashion & I’ll certainly be doing *my* research by watching as many of them as possible, but anything you need to know about fashion for the stories, I’ll fill you in on as we go along. :howyoudoin

  7. Debbi S says:

    I do not watch Project Runway but I would definitely buy these books. I love connected books and they sound fun! Plus, I just read another book or two set in the fashion world and I really enjoyed them.

    I just love your books also so more is always good! Keep them coming. :thumbsup

  8. Heidi says:

    Thanks, Debbi! I think it would be a fun setting for some Desires, too. :cheer

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