Unlikely Merger: Behind the Scenes of the Newest Write Integrity Press Multi-Author Novella
Unlikely Merger is the title of the most recent Write Integrity Press multi-author collaboration novella. While Write Integrity Press has completed two multi-author Christmas novellas (The Christmas Tree Treasure Hunt and A Ruby Christmas) and a stand alone collection of Valentine stories called Hearts Bouquets, Unlikely Merger is the third in a unique series.
What makes these so unique? I’m glad you asked because there are a variety of answers.
The first novella in this series was released for Valentines 2014. A Dozen Apologies was born from my imagination, which is unique in itself. As I have posted many times, I am the least romantic of romance writers. I don’t have a romantic bone in my body. The idea for the first novella actually came from a memory of a game I used to play called The Dating Game. Not the one on television, but some of my generation might remember this game. The board had a door in the middle of it, and when directed the player would open the door and see who her date would be. My favorite guy behind the door was the one referred to as the loser. That tells you how romantic I can be. Anyway, A Dozen Apologies is the story of Mara Adkins, a Southern Belle who was less than a charmer in high school and college. Oh, she was beautiful–on the outside. Inside? Not so lovely to behold. When Christ got hold of her heart, though, Mara changed, and she also felt God’s leading to apologize to a dozen men she’d hurt by playing cruel tricks on them in college.
The stories were also made unique by our publisher who posted the first chapters on Write Integrity’s website one day at a time. This is where the first chapter of Unlikely Merger is posted today. After the readers met each of the heroes of the story, the readers voted on their favorite hero Mara met during her apologies. A Dozen Apologies became a hit. The voters chose the hero, and the readers found out who he was when the complete novella was offered on Kindle. If you haven’t read the book, you’ll have to get it to see what lucky hero won the gal.
Mara’s choice left us with eleven other perfectly fine and handsome heroes to choose from. Our second-runner up for Mara’s heart had been Brent Teague, and he was heartbroken at his loss. That’s when his author, Jerusha Agen, was asked to rescue Brent from a life of total heartache. Jerusha’s answer: she sent Brent on a cruise where he worked as a chaplain in The Love Boat Bachelor. The authors of that collaboration took the readers all over the Caribbean and introduced them to several girls that made Brent’s acquaintance on the cruise. Of course, though, only one could win his heart, and that meant a new heroine needed a story so that she could find the love of her life.
Enter Marji Laine and her heroine, Mercy Lacewell, a nursing school dropout (for a very good reason), who now works for her father’s company. Mercy’s job is to scope out merger prospects for her father’s company, and she travels quite a bit to meet the owners (and sometimes not the owners) of potentially profitable organizations. Yes, Mercy meets some heroes on the way, ten to be exact. And, again, the readers will be able to vote for their favorite.
That brings us to the next unique quality of this series of Write Integrity Press novellas. While the readers might know the names of the authors who collaborated on each novella, we closely guard the identities of the chapter authors until the complete book is released. We do this because we don’t want the readers voting for the author. We want the hero to win on his merits alone.
Beginning today, June 8, Write Integrity Press has posted the first chapter of Unlikely Merger. Today’s post introduces the story, and starting tomorrow through Saturday, June 13, readers can meet five of the stories heroes. Then on Monday June 15 through Friday, June 19, the other five heroes will have their stories told.
Readers can then vote for a favorite hero starting June 20 with the voting closing on June 24, and the winning hero, and that hero’s author, will get the last chapter of the book.
Starting tomorrow, here on Inner Source, I hope you’ll join us as I’ve interviewed each of the guys so that they can tell you a little bit more about themselves and maybe even share some of their thoughts about Mercy Lacewell. On June 25, the day after voting closes, members of this multi-author collaboration will begin to share with you how they brought their heroes to life.
The completed novella, with the winning hero’s chapter will be available on Kindle starting July 1 and running through July 5.
Until then, we invite you to learn more about the project from our various authors. Today’s posts include:
Marji Laine: New Job, New Direction
Julie Arduini: Unlikely Merger Authors Share Their Corporate Experiences
Betty Thomason Owens: Introduction to Unlikely Merger
Carole Towriss: Mercy’s Home The Mile High City