Little Gems 2012 Author – Carmen Gowans

Meet Carmen Gowans, Diamond Edition author of:

Diamonds In The Sky

We asked Carmen what challenges her most about writing a short romance story and to share her tips.

Hmm… hard question. I never know what to write until my fingers start tapping the keyboard. But that applies across the board, not just for short stories. That’s one reason why I think short story competitions are great, because they usually provide a word limit, a time limit and a theme. Just the thing for writers who like a prompt!

My tips: It should resonate with your soul; you should have fun with it; and cut Cut! CUT!!

Do you have a favourite line/short piece from your short?

Not sure if it’s what you meant, but I’m fond of this paragraph:

“She fell asleep dreaming she was thirteen again, dreaming of the high field and stars like diamonds, dreaming of Luke Walsh, the boy with the lopsided smile and adorable face. He had kissed her that last night, his lips sweet and smooth and tasting of oranges. And she had floated in starlight.”

What was you inspiration for the story?

I’m drawn to sparkly things 🙂

What are you working on now?

I’m working on Not Running Out of Steam, which can happen if I don’t eventually stumble on a clear goal for a story. That wasn’t a book title, BTW 🙂

What are your writing goals for the future?

This question made me smile because I find the writing process so therapeutic. Yes, even revision and editing. I don’t mean in a cathartic way, just that the actual creative focus is very soothing for me. So while I’m thrilled and honoured that my entry will be published (Yay!), I wouldn’t want any undue pressure to negate that lovely, calming effect. Having said that, I would like to complete my latest project – I’m reluctant to call it a book / novel until the first draft is finished – and then see about submitting it. But that’s a long way off.

Anthology Orders Now Open

Would you like to order the anthology for yourself, as a special gift or a Christmas (yes I said Christmas) stocking filler?

Orders are now open and we are taking pre-release orders until the end of June, so plenty of time. Use the order form on our RWA website.

 NOTE: Pre-release ordering means you are ordering and paying but the anthology will not be available until August (launched at the national conference).
Leave a comment


  1. Hi Carmen,
    Sparkly things are rather alluring! I’m a bit like you with story ideas – I have a vague idea of what’s going to happen, which evolves as I write.
    Best of luck with your latest project and I can’t wait to read your story.

    • Carmen

       /  May 29, 2012

      Thanks, Shayne! I’m looking forward to reading yours, too. It’s a great feeling to have made the anthology, isn’t it? 😀

  2. Hi Carmen,
    Congratulations on your entry in the anthology. As a past LG author I know how much it means when you finally see your words in print.

  3. Cath Evans

     /  May 29, 2012

    Hi Carmen,
    I’m like you too, no idea what the story is about until it’s written and if it takes too long, yep, I run out of steam. Fickle process we have 🙂
    Good luck with your writing!

  4. Carol H

     /  May 29, 2012

    Hi Carmen! I really did think that Not Running Out Of Steam was the title of your book. I immediately then thought it was Steam Punk. I can feel a story coming on already …
    Your approach to writing is so very different from mine. I plot everything (mostly) first – including my Little Gems. But then I certainly don’t get that therapeutic and calming effect you mention in the writing. I’m going to be very curious to read the result of your approach in the anthology. Congrats!

    • Carmen

       /  May 30, 2012

      Haha, Carol! Glad to be of assistance 🙂 And thanks!
      The pressure of having to write the story before I know what it is makes me feel trapped. But I do plot… kind of. Just not to begin with. It happens during the rough first draft and consists of jotting down possible subsequent steps at the bottom of the page as connections come to me while I’m writing. I also bookmark them as they occur, so I can locate them easily. I find I’m able to chart more of the course as the story develops. I do spreadsheets when the story is finished (not for short stories, though) so I can track and change things around. Apart form style, voice etc., I doubt there would be any obvious difference in the end result. Cheers!

  5. Vanda Vadas

     /  May 30, 2012

    Hi Carmen
    I too thought that Not Running Out of Steam was the title of your story. Am looking forward to reading your Little Gems entry, and regarding your favourite paragraph…I like that his kiss tasted like oranges. Mmmm…

    • Carmen

       /  May 31, 2012

      Thanks, Vanda. Can’t wait to see all the different takes on the theme!


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