posted on April 14, 2017 by Lyn Cote

Rules–to follow them or not to? Hmmmmm.

Any author’s first book–even published years late–is the dearest to her heart and this is mine, La Belle Christiane.

When I began writing my first manuscript, I literally ran after my two toddlers with a clipboard in my hand and wrote whenever they paused. 🙂 I wrote that story without knowing anything about the fiction market. In fact, I told myself just to write the book and then I’d think about marketing it. The thought of that was overwhelming at that time. It took me three years of writing to finish my first manuscript-1,000 handwritten pages. Whew!

Then on to marketing. And while it garnered interest from agents and editors, it never found a publisher. I think that’s because there are “unwritten” rules for both inspirational and romance fiction and I didn’t know them or follow them. I broke the rules!

I still think it’s a good story and I’ve revised it and polished it so that it is of the same quality as my present writing. But it still breaks the rules for romance and inspirational fiction. I am a rule-breaker. Who knew?

In the end I didn’t want it to sit ignored on my shelf forever unread. My heroine is a unique character and I thought she and Major John Eastham deserved to have their story told. So now that authors can publish their own books, I did so.

Still I decided I should warn my usual readers that this book while mine is different.

Note to My Readers: I want you to know that Christiane is not my “expected” heroine. And while my books are usually G rated, this book would be a PG 13. Christiane comes from a background far different than say, my Quaker heroines and she is trying to find her way to the truth and true love. So if you want my regular heroine, I suggest you try my novella, “Where Honor Began” and read my Quaker Brides series. Christiane is different and yet very much like my heroines now. But I wanted you to know upfront–she’s not my usual. Thanks–Lyn

So what’s La Belle Christiane about anyway?


Can the beautiful daughter of a French courtesan find a love that will last a lifetime?

In the early 1770’s, Christiane flees France with her renegade father. Through many changes, she moves into the heart of the American rebel elite, becoming companion to Lady Washington. But one man in her life can never be forgotten. Once he was her friend. Now he has become her enemy. Will he become her destiny? Only God knows.

WHAT DO YOU THINK–will readers be able to detect the “rules” that I broke? Or is it just something agents and editors worry about?–Lyn

This book will be free on kindle April 27 through May 1st.


Lyn Cote

Lyn Cote

USA Today best-selling author of over 40 romances, Lyn Cote writes award-winning contemporary and historical romance. Her brand is "Strong Women, Brave Stories." Her books feature a strong heroine, often a multi-cultural cast of characters and authentic history or contemporary life. She lives with her real life hero in a lakeside cottage in the northwoods with two fun cats. (She loves dogs too. :-)

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2 thoughts on “Rules–to follow them or not to? Hmmmmm.”

  1. I think it depends on the reader. I, for one, like unusual settings and h/hs–broken rules. Case in point, I once told an author at signing how much I liked her historical set in Singapore. She smiled and replied, “Oh, you’re one of the six people who bought it.” An exaggeration, but… I also enjoyed LaBelle Christiane because it’s different–for one thing.

    1. Avatar Lyn Cote says:

      Yes, Jean, being different is risky. But I wasn’t willing to let Lady Sarah or La Belle Christiane sit in my drawer unread. Glad you enjoyed LBC>

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