Santa Cruz, California, October 28th, 2014

Santa Cruz, California, October 28th, 2014

Tuesday, April 7, 2015

I have a guest! Her name is Jill Kemerer!

This hottie is none other than my friend Jill Kemerer. 

Her new book, Small-Town Bachelor releases today with Love Inspired.

I asked her to tell us about what she wished she'd known when she started writing. Take it away Jill...

What I Wish I Knew When I Started Writing

By Jill Kemerer

I’ve been writing for over twenty years, but I didn’t get serious until my youngest headed to Kindergarten. I laugh about it now, but at the time I believed I would get a contract within a year. It seemed reasonable. What can I say? I was clueless.

Well, I did get requests for my books, but after two form rejections from editors, I knew I had to figure out what I was doing wrong. I studied writing craft books, devoured blogs geared toward writers and worked hard to improve my manuscripts.

One thing I wish I knew then?

I’ll never write a perfect first draft.

In fact, I’ll never even write a nearly perfect first draft!

Some people revise as they go and won’t continue writing until the current section is perfect. I am not that person. I try to get the draft down without overanalyzing it. At the beginning of each writing session, I quickly review the previous day’s work and tweak any obvious issues. After I’ve written the first three chapters, I go back and read them, reworking them if necessary. I do this again when I hit the midpoint. Then I don’t look back until I’m finished.

My first drafts don’t always feature enough sensory details. Parts are heavy on backstory. Other parts are packed with too much dialogue. Some scenes need more of a transition. You get the point! I always, always find plenty of things to fix when I start revising.

Another problem with my first draft? Repetition. These people smile, shrug and frown more than mimes! I have a weird habit of repeating one word in a book. It’s different each time. A few books ago, I used the word “perk” over and over. Why? Why?? I will never know.

But that’s the thing--a mediocre first draft isn’t a big deal. I can fix a draft. I revise in layers, using a series of questions and techniques to improve the story. When I’m confident the story is solid, I send it to my critique partners. They are a tremendous help to me. Wendy Paine Miller and Jessica R. Patch always find things that make no sense or could be improved! I’m grateful for them.

What do you wish you had known when you started writing?

Thank you so much, Jennifer, for hosting me today!


About Jill ~

Jill Kemerer writes inspirational romance novels with love, humor and faith. A full time writer and homemaker, she relies on coffee and chocolate to keep up with her kids’ busy schedules.

Besides spoiling her mini-dachshund, Jill adores magazines, M&M’s, fluffy animals and long nature walks. She resides in Ohio with her husband and two children.  Jill loves connecting with readers, so please visit her website and find her on Facebook and Twitter.


Small-Town Bachelor ~

A Place to Call Home
When Reed Hamilton arrives in Lake Endwell for a family wedding, he expects to do his part as best man then head back to the big city. But when a tornado postpones the wedding, the town is in shambles and Reed is injured. Thankfully maid of honor Claire Sheffield offers him one of her cottages to recuperate in.

Dedicated to her family and her dream job at the zoo, Claire is all about roots. She's this city slicker's opposite, yet as they help the town rebuild, Reed is captivated by her stunning looks and caring ways. He can't ask Claire to leave the life she loves for him, but he also can't imagine ever leaving her behind…

Interested in buying Small-Town Bachelor? Click on for links to purchase!


  1. Thanks so much for having me today, Jennifer!! What is the one thing you wish you'd known when you started writing?

  2. Thanks for visiting! The one thing I wish I knew? THAT I KNEW NOTHING!!! Learning the art and craft of writing is hard work, and it never ends!

  3. I still know nothing! Ha! I'm revising today, and it's a disaster. I want to curl into the fetal position and whimper... :)

  4. Well, if I knew now what I didn't know then, I probably never would have attempted publication. So I don't know if that's good or bad. :) There really needs to be a warning label on the career path that says AUTHOR.
    Congrats on the new release, Jill!!

  5. Catherine, I was too stubborn to believe the horror stories! I'm glad I didn't let them stop me, although it's been a rough road! Thank you!!

  6. Jill, I love this! Thank you, Jennifer. Yeah, I saw someone write the other day that they were sending their work off to their critique partner after only one edit. I thought she must be a really good writer. Because mine take at least 10-15 edits. I'm sure I'll speed up in time ... but there are so many small details that I don't catch until that 10th review.