I have to thank my grandmother for the big box of books. Without it, I’d never have found Jude Deveraux’s Temptation and devoured it in one sitting. And I’d never have read every single title on her backlist and then moved on to Julie Garwood’s list and then Julia Quinn’s and then Lisa Kleypas’ and Sherry Thomas’ lists, too. I’d have never found my way into my local library and asked a very lovely, chain smoking librarian if she could recommend a fantastic read to me. And she would never have recommended Harlan Coben’s Tell No One and Gone For Good. And I’d never have experienced the pure joy that a thriller could give you. Jude Deveraux made me a reader. Harlan Coben made me a writer. But Grandma King…she gave me Narnia and the Scottish Highlands, she gave me a courtroom in the South and a space shuttle traveling to Mars. She showed me the power of books and changed my life forever. And I’ll never be able to thank her enough.
I was born in Seoul, South Korea but was adopted very young and moved to the United States. I have a huge family and the best mom and dad. My childhood was, in a word, idyllic. I wish everyone could have a childhood like mine. The teen years however, were a different story. Lots of angst, lots of goth makeup, lots of fighting with the best parents in the world. My early twenties were spent unfocused, and it wasn’t until I was about 24 that I began to actually get serious about my life and where I wanted it to go and what I wanted it to be.
Books had always been a safe haven to me. I loved immersing myself in a great story and getting lost there for hours. And even though Harlan Coben made me first put my fingers to keyboard, it wasn’t until I read Stephenie Meyer’s Twilight that I thought maybe I could get published, too. So while I worked on my first book, I also worked on getting myself into the publishing field as much as I could. I answered Craigslist ads and Help Wanted signs on bulletin boards. I cold queried and called newspapers and freelanced freelanced freelanced! And one fateful day in 2007, I answered an online ad for a magazine job in New York (because I was CERTAIN I’d be moving there to live a life a la Carrie Bradshaw). Well, to my surprise, the job was actually in the very city I was already living in. And my first door to publishing officially opened. I became a writer for Lux Magazine.
I felt like my dreams were becoming a reality. I was working in publishing, I was interviewing people and reviewing live theater and I got a picture taken with Fabio! I was writing my very first book and I was sure a publishing contract was right around the corner. I was going to be the next Stephenie Meyer, so help me! But of course, that is not exactly what happened.
At the very least, getting rejected over and over again sucked. I did finally manage to get an agent eventually but it did not work out and so I was back to where I started. Querying. Getting rejections. I consoled myself with cute cat videos and my dogs. I wrote another book while I kept wishing and hoping and praying that the first book would catch the attention of an agent and sell, but the second book took a very similar journey as the first. So I wrote a third book. And then a fourth and fifth and sixth. And even though it SUCKED every time a rejection slip would come through, I wasn’t about to give up.
Instead, I picked myself up, took out a new sheet of paper and started once more. And this time, I was not playing around. I took online courses, I soaked up all the info I could get. I read fiction to help ignite my creativity and nonfiction to keep me accountable and focused. I wrote and deleted So. Many. Drafts.
I learned lessons the hard way.
I became more critical of my work.
I didn’t quit.
I became better.
And the first book of my contemporary romance series, Just The Way You Are, will be on sale soon!
With a newfound passion for writing and an eagerness to share all the lessons I had learned, I began to teach and host small workshops around the city. I taught newbie writers, jaded writers, picture books writers and sci-fi writers. I taught them all and learned something I carry to this day:
Every person I met had a sensational story inside them. Every one. But most of them had something else, too: fear. Fear of failure, fear of the blank page. Fear that an idea is not good enough or fear that they won’t have any ideas left after they write it. Fear that they have nothing new to offer to the genre.
Well let me tell you: you are special! You’re the only one! You’re the only one like you! Not to sound all Barney, but there isn’t another in the whole wide world who can do the things you do.
You are special. And the stories inside you are special. You just have to have the courage to let them shine.
And that’s why I made this site, and it’s probably one of the most important things you can know about me. I believe the world needs more storytellers, more people to shine the light, to walk in the light, to share that light. I believe stories connect us and, to paraphrase one of my favorite authors Tiffany Reisz, words are the fabric of our universe. This site is to inspire and motivate as well as share my own bit of light with my stories, too. So whether you’re here as a newbie with nothing but a pen and an idea in mind, or whether you’re working on your tenth story, I’m here to help you shine brighter than diamonds.
Whew! This is a long little section, huh? Well, thank you for hanging with me this far. I’d like to think it’s because of my witty repartee and my oh so beautiful snapshots, but I have a feeling it’s because you’re wondering how I can help you finally bring your story to light. One of the biggest things you can do is sign up to receive my monthly newsletter which is jam-packed full of writing tips and tricks and other fun stuff like exclusive interviews with big time motivators, contests and giveaways. You’ll also get a free downloadable to help jump start your writing and make 2018 the best year yet.
Thank you again for taking the time to stop on by. Much love, luck and success to you this day and every day.