IT'S LIVE!!! Elementary Romantic Calculus is officially in the world! Today is the day you can finally start your binge read!
Get it here: https://books2read.com/ERC
This is it. The last Chemistry Lessons book. The end of an era. I’m having a lot of feelings about it. Some sadness and nostalgia to be saying goodbye, but also a lot of excitement for what’s coming next.
When I wrote Remedial Rocket Science, I wasn’t planning for a series. I was just trying to write one really good story. I just wanted to see if I could do it—actually write a whole book good enough to publish.
There are a lot of things I probably should have done differently at the beginning of this series. But I’m glad I didn’t, because I love each and every one of the Chemistry Lessons books with all my heart. I took some risks and made some choices that went against common advice. Like my titles (not romancey enough!) and my covers (only man chest sells!), to name just two. Turns out, those risky choices were two of the best decisions I made. Because they helped my books stand out in a crowded marketplace, and they appealed to exactly the readers who were most likely to enjoy these stories. Also, I happened to get in on the leading edge of the illustrated cover boom, which was probably 50% intuition and 50% sheer blind luck.
I made some other questionable decisions, like making book two about the unlikable loser the heroine goes on a blind date with in book one. But as you’ve probably noticed by now, I like redemption arcs and characters who aren’t easy to like. My favorite kinds of people to write about are the ones who grow beyond their mistakes or are better and more complex than what they present to the world. The one thing I’ve always done consistently is write the kind of stories I’d want to read. I think that guiding principle has helped me write stories that connect with readers, but it’s also helped make all this hard work enjoyable on a personal level.
The only thing I really regret is that I’ve never planned very far ahead in the Chemistry Lessons series. Only when I finished writing one book did I start thinking about the next one. Who is my heroine going to be? What STEM field should she work in? How can I connect her to the characters in the previous books? I was so consumed by the task right in front of me that I couldn’t think about what was coming after that. I wish I’d introduced the knitting group in book one, and I wish I’d introduced six books’ worth of characters through that Antidote group instead of just four. Did you know I originally thought to stop after Applied Electromagnetism? But then I realized I wasn’t ready to let it go yet.
Now, though…now I am ready.
I’ve grown as a writer enough that I can look farther ahead. And that’s what I’ve been doing. Looking ahead to the next series, which I’ve approached in a completely different way. I knew I wanted Elementary Romantic Calculus to set up a spin-off series, and I knew I wanted that spin-off series to be about a family living in a small town in Texas. I knew I wanted those books to feel more interconnected and the characters’ stories to be deeply intertwined across the series. So I sketched out that whole series—the town, the ice cream company that put it on the map, the six siblings who’d be getting their own books, and the tangled family they came from. Only then did I sit down and plot Elementary Romantic Calculus and come up with the characters of Mia and Josh.
I have to say, I wish I’d been writing like this all along. It’s been SO FUN to create this fictional town and dive deep into the complex interrelationships that drive the characters. I guess that’s why I don’t feel more heartbroken about the end of the Chemistry Lessons series. Because Elementary Romantic Calculus isn’t an end.
It’s a beginning.
I can’t be sad, because I’m too excited about where I’ve ended up. Crowder, Texas, is a place I LOVE visiting in my head, and I hope you’ll love it as much as I do.
Thank you for coming on this journey with me. Thank you for reading my books, loving my books, recommending my books, and supporting me in so many different ways along this journey. I hope this book is everything you want it to be. I hope Elementary Romantic Calculus becomes one of your favorite books. I hope you fall in love with Mia and Josh just like I did while I was writing them. And I hope you fall so in love with Crowder and everyone who lives there that you’re as excited as I am for what comes next.