writer’s life

Fun Fluff & Other Stuff

0Happy TGIF! 

Helping me celebrate the beginning of the weekend is J.J. Devine, author of The Cheyenne Bride and the newly released Into The Darkness. She’ll tell you more about her work in a moment, but first Zee Questions Pleeze:

 

 

 

Getting to Know You:

 

What did you have for breakfast? I don’t eat breakfast often, when I do it is usually brunch, (bacon and eggs, biscuits and gravy, or maybe pancakes and waffles)

What are you wearing? LOL, in my defense it’s almost bedtime, so jammies

When was the last time you cried? When my granddaughter passed away.

What was your favorite Hallowe’en costume? Well, seeing as this is one of my most favorite holidays and yes, I do dress each year to go out with the grandchildren, my costume is always a witch J

What’s the first thing you notice about the opposite sex? Whether or not they have a sense of humor. I love to laugh.

 

The Good/The Bad

 

BarShot5_color_HRWorst habit: I’m a smoker

Worst movie: Traffic, yuk

Worst food: Liver hands down

Worst alcoholic drink: Beer, gross, I’m a whiskey woman myself J

Worst vacation: I love vacation, even the bad ones, like planning a week long camping trip and it rains the whole time. I’m still up for it J

 

Fav fruit: Peaches (I was born in Georgia and spent a good part of my growing up running in and out of that state)

Fav dessert: Cherry Cheesecake hands down

Fav color: Red

Fav sport: I’m not into sports, but if I had to choose, baseball

Fav flower: Roses

 

This or That:

 

IMG_53911Soup or salad: Salad

Fame or fortune: You mean I can’t have both, LOL. Hmmm, probably fortune

New York or LA: I’ve never been to either, but if I had to choose LA

Jeans or yoga pants: I’m a country girl, so jeans all the way

Mac or PC: PC

Twitter or facebook: Both

Manicure or pedicure: Both

Dogs or cats: Both

Nightie or pj’s: Pjs

Coffee or tea: I’m a southern girl so sweet tea all the way

 

The Really Important Things:

 

ford-mustang-convertible-1What store do you shop at the most? Walmart, because I hate to shop and I can get everything in one place

If you could be any (other) nationality, what would it be? Native American, I love the rich history of their culture.

You own a yacht. What do you call it? The Dreamer

What’s your favorite sports car? Mustang

Do you let your sig other buy jewelry for you on their own or help them pick it out? We’ve been married almost 29 years, so yes I do. He knows my taste and does a very good job at picking out jewelry. In fact the necklace he bought me for Christmas has gotten more compliments than any other piece of jewelry I own J

 

More This or That (Just ‘Cause They’re So Much Fun):

 

Independence DayThanksgiving or July 4th: July 4th

Morning or night: Night

Summer or winter: Both

Chocolate or vanilla: Both

Print or ebook: Both

Rock or pop music: Both

Heels or sneakers: Both

Europe or the Caribbean: Oh oh both for sure J

Wealth or health: Health

Fly or be invisible at will: Fly definitely, couldn’t you see it, me in my witch’s costume, flying around town on Halloween night J

 

More about J.J. Devine:

 

AIbEiAIAAABDCLGchuiIweiwTCILdmNhcmRfcGhvdG8qKGZjOTljZjY4NWYwNGI2MTc0ZjRjNzMxYTUwYTdmMGJmN2VjMGFlOTgwAagIOCaF9NyOqqogU2oP5T9cXoXGJ.J. Devine grew up loving the written word. She spent her days daydreaming and imagining what life would be like if she lived between the pages of the books she read. Today, she still spends her days dreaming. Only now she pens them into the romance novels she enjoys writing to share with her readers. On her down time, she enjoys spending time with her hubby, children, grandchildren, and pets. As well as helping to bring public awareness on the subject of domestic violence.

 

 

UnknownAuthor Links:

Website:

http://definingjjdevine.weebly.com/

Blog:

http://definingjjdevine.weebly.com/ramblings-of-a-writer.html

Facebook:

https://www.facebook.com/JJDevineAuthor?ref=ts&fref=ts

Twitter:

https://twitter.com/JjDevine2010

 

0July 9, 2014 with the help of Soul Mate Publishing I just released the first of my paranormal series, Into the Darkness. It’s a coming into oneself story about a young woman, Raven, who believed for the first twenty-five years of her life she was nothing more than a mortal woman. Imagine her surprise when she not only found out she was part witch, but the man who sired her was a vampire. The story takes you on Raven’s journey from innocence into finding her true self. Of course she has the help of a very sexy vampire, Dragon. You may have met him somewhere out there in the blogging world the last few weeks. He does love to visit the world wide web a bit J

You can grab your copy of Into the Darkness on Amazon:

 

http://www.amazon.com/Into-Darkness-J-J-Devine-ebook/dp/B00LMS9D2A/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1405398961&sr=8-1&keywords=into+the+darkness+j.j.+devine

 

Fridays: Fun Fluff & Other Stuff

The Bride Gift, Soul Mate Publishing

The Bride Gift, Soul Mate Publishing

Welcome!

It’s Friday. It’s July (my fav month) and I’m launching a new weekly feature, introducing an author friend and asking them all manner of unwriterly things.

This week it’s Sarah Hegger, author of The Bride Gift, an Amazon #1 Bestseller.

After this fun & fluffy interview, she’s going to tell you a bit about her next medieval book, Sweet Bea. She’s releasing it September 1st, but you can pre-order it right now.

 

 

Getting to Know You:

 

What did you have for breakfast? Yoplait 100 calorie Greek Yoghurt (to counter the pizza)

What are you wearing? Shorts and a tee-shirt. It’s 100 degrees out there.

When was the last time you cried? On the weekend.

What was your favorite Hallowe’en costume? A sexy witch I made for myself.

What’s the first thing you notice about the opposite sex? Arms, yum!

 

The Good/The Bad

 

UnknownFav fruit: Cherries

Fav dessert: Ice cream (Haagen Dazs), oh and baked cheesecake

Fav color: Green

Fav sport: Cricket

Fav flower: Iris

 

Jason Kelly

Jason Kelly

 

Worst habit: Drinking out of the bottle/carton

Worst movie: Last Exit to Brooklyn (great movie but so depressing I couldn’t shake it)

Worst food: Fish Blech! Yuck!

Worst alcoholic drink: Pretty much all of them

Worst vacation: Montreal at Christmas 16 years ago, freezing cold and no snow

 

This or That:

 

Soup or salad: Soup

Fame or fortune: Yes, please

New York or LA: New York

Jeans or yoga pants: Yoga Pants

Mac or PC: Mac

Twitter or facebook: Twitter

Manicure or pedicure: Pedicure

Dogs or cats: Dogs, dogs, dogs, dogs

Nightie or Pj’s: PJ’s

Coffee or tea: Coffee (when my husband makes it for me.)

 

The Really Important Things:

 

Polly C.

Polly C.

What store do you shop at the most? Nordstrom (I have a shoe thing)

If you could be any (other) nationality, what would it be? Spanish

You own a yacht. What do you call it? Amanzi (Zulu word for water)

What’s your favorite sports car? E-Type Jaguar

Do you let your sig other buy jewelry for you on their own or help them pick it out? He has great taste in jewelry.

 

More This or That (Just ‘Cause They’re So Much Fun):

 

Thanksgiving or July 4th: Thanksgiving

Morning or night: Night

Summer or winter: SUMMER!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Chocolate or vanilla: Vanilla

Print or ebook: ebook

Rock or pop music: Rock

Heels or sneakers: Heels

Europe or the Caribbean: Both

Wealth or health: Health

Fly or be invisible at will: Invisibility.

 

 

Who am I?

 

Sarah Hegger

Sarah Hegger

Born British and raised in South Africa, Sarah Hegger suffers from an incurable case of wanderlust. Her match? A hot Canadian engineer, whose marriage proposal she accepted six short weeks after they first met. Together they’ve made homes in seven different cities across three different continents (and back again once or twice). If only it made her multilingual, but the best she can manage is idiosyncratic English, fluent Afrikaans, conversant Russian, pigeon Portuguese, even worse Zulu and enough French to get herself into trouble.

Mimicking her globe trotting adventures, Sarah’s career path began as a gainfully employed actress, drifted into public relations, settled a moment in advertising, and eventually took root in the fertile soil of her first love, writing. She also moonlights as a wife and mother.

She currently lives in Draper, Utah, with her teenage daughters, two Golden Retrievers and aforementioned husband. Part footloose buccaneer, part quixotic observer of life, Sarah’s restless heart is most content when reading or writing books.

 

She loves to hear from readers and you can find her at any of the places below.

 

Website

Facebook

Twitter

 

Sweet Bea

 

Lyrical Press

Lyrical Press

Is anything sweeter than revenge?

 

In a family of remarkable people, ordinary Beatrice strives to prove herself worthy. When her family is threatened with losing everything, she rushes to London to save them. Unfortunately, she chooses as her savior the very man who will see her family brought low.

Garrett has sworn vengeance on Sir Arthur of Anglesea for destroying his life when he was a boy and forcing his mother into prostitution for them to survive. He has chosen as his instrument Sir Arthur’s youngest daughter, Beatrice.

Can Beatrice’s goodness teach Garrett that love, not vengeance, is the greatest reward of all?

 

 

Available for preorder on Amazon

 

Thanks so much Sarah. Fun getting to know the author behind the great stories. Please leave a comment below of you liked this feature.

Romance Weekly #LoveWriteChat

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from SoulMate Publishing

from SoulMate Publishing

 

 

 

If you’ve just come from J.R. Richardson, author of the fabulous Cursed be the Wicked, the lady who penned this week’s questions, welcome! If you’ve come from somewhere else, welcome, welcome! This is my stop on Romance Weekly’s author blog tour.

 

 

How often do you write?

 

images-3I want to write everyday. I don’t. I probably get to write 4-6 days a week. Sometimes it’s new words, sometimes it’s editing. If I’m in the new words phase, it varies between 200-2,000 words, depending on whether I have narrations or other demands. If I’m editing, I try to do 2-3 chapters a day. I haven’t figured out how to add up word counts during editing days. And how do you figure time done plotting? Anybody? I dream of spending 6-8 uninterrupted hours a day writing. That’s my goal – so far unattainable, but as the kids get older and my husband gets more and more supportive and understands that I need unbroken quiet, my hope grows. (Because like Elna Rae says, where hope grows, miracles blossom)

 

images-4Do you think it’s important to your craft to write as much as you can, and as often as you can?

When I write more I produce more. But I’ve gone through times when I haven’t been able to meet my word counts. I don’t want to derail myself by thinking if I don’t write as often as I can that I’m a failed writer. You only fail when you stop trying. Life will let you write more sometimes and less others. Sometimes we need to refill the well, so we don’t run dry and that’s part of the process, too.

 

 

Stephanie Gauvin  on Mt Assiniboine

Stephanie Gauvin on Mt Assiniboine

What is your opinion on the saying “if you don’t write every day, you’re not a writer”?

For me it’s similar to acting. I am definitely an actress. What I call a “career” actress, because I’ve been able to live off nothing other than acting for over 20 years. I don’t get an acting gig everyday, but I do land 3-4 of them a week. I acted and practiced the craft for several years before I could “quit my day job”. It’s the same working in any art. You must practice your craft, hone those skills, until you are marketable. I act when I’m not getting paid to act. I notice my own feelings, emotions and those of others. I observe people. A lot. Since I’m primarily a voice actor, I read out loud and “play with my instrument”. In effect, I “act” daily. This is transferable to writing. Or painting. One of my artist friends, who happens to be in Who’s Who in American Art, responds the same way whenever some one asks her, “How long did it take to do that watercolor?” “30 minutes and 30 years,” she’ll say. There’s more to writing than writing. There’s reading and thinking and observing. And social media. Can’t forget that.

 

Ok, hop with me now to Veronica Forand’s blog. She’s a multi-award winner, Veronica is. Including being a Finalist in the Daphne Du Maurier Award for Excellence in Mystery/Suspense.

http://veronicaforand.com

 

 

Romance Weekly #LoveWriteChat

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Welcome!

Thanks to Amy Jarecki author of the Highland Force series for the invitation to land here on the Romance Weekly blog hop.

These questions are from author Jeanne McDonald, who releases The Certainty of Deception today. (Join her facebook release party—Woot! 3p.m.-11p.m.Eastern Standard)

 

How did you go about choosing the names for your characters?

 

images-2Sometimes I go on baby naming sites, like http://www.20000-names.com/ or http://www.sheknows.com/ Most of the time, however, the names just come to me along with the character. Sometimes a main character begins with one name and changes names on the third or fourth re-write. Ruby in Stolen Kiss started life as Vero (pronounced the French Canadian way- rhymes with arrow). Arabella in Stolen Heart began as Annika. But the character that developed in the story didn’t match the name and kind of insisted on switching. People I know can influence name choices. Tukie Cohen was inspired from awesome women in my town with unusual names like Twinkle, Honey and Cookie. The names of the hero and heroine in my WIP came to me very quickly. Dane and Eva. They are such opposites and so much fun!

 

Where did the inspiration for your current book come from?

7784174530_e8da0fc255_mNineteen years ago in March I was holed up in a Norwegian hutel (not a hotel) during a white out, while my husband skied the tops of the Jotunheimen mountain region. After failing the “check-out” I was unable to cross-country ski the distances to go hut-to-hut and stayed put. My newly weaned (for aforementioned trip) ten-month-old daughter (home with grandparents) and I cried about our separation. The story poured out over three days and I tucked the notes away for posterity. (19 years—that’s a generation, right?) P.S. It has nothing to do with snow.

 

What methods do you use to ensure you have no plot holes (journal, storyboard, outline, editor, etc.)?

 

Unknown-1I’m too superstitious to use a word like “ensure” regarding no plot holes, but the method I follow is three fold. The story kernel gets a page. I run this page through the Late and wonderfully generous Blake Snyder’s Save the Cat 15 Beats system. At this point, I usually spin a journal or two for my main characters, so I get to know them, their voices and their problems better. Lastly, (my most recent development) I use Lisa Miller’s Plot Safari guidelines (from the Margie Lawson school) to really develop the plot. By this time, I have a good solid 40 pages to use as a guideline. At any point during this process, I may send off notes to my incredible Critique Partner, the inimitable Sarah Hegger for eyes, Yeas, and Nays. I also have two other really talented CP’s who I hope to continue working with who tell me where I went wrong after the ms or parts of it are completed: Brenda Margriet and VC Monroe (Vicki Mixon). I’m extremely fortunate to have their input. And am open to new ideas to help keep the writing organic and fresh.

 

UnknownI am really curious to see how Regency Romance author Collette Cameron answered these questions. (especially if she reveals how she came up with the hero and heroine’s names for The Earl’s Enticement – swoon) Join me in checking her out by clicking here:

http://blueroseromance.com

 

Romance Weekly #LoveWriteChat

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thursdaysatcoconuts400x600Welcome!

Thanks Beth Carter for the hand-off. (Watch for her release of Thursdays at Coconuts—don’t you love this cover?—in August)

Happy you landed here. It’s the Romance Weekly blog hop where twenty plus romance authors answer the same 3 interview questions and you get insight into the (sometimes) zany minds behind the stories you love. Thanks to Tessa Gray for this week’s questions.

Do any characters you’ve written into your books remind you of yourself? Explain which ones and why?

Ruby the main character in Stolen Kiss reminds me of my inner people pleaser. Like with Ruby, people pleasing was a good coping strategy for a chaotic childhood, but in her/my twenties became the biggest roadblock article-2161071-13AABF42000005DC-283_306x341to mature (lasted longer than a couple years) love. Arabella, the heroine in Stolen Heart is a manifestation of my inner geek. Though I love sciences, I went into arts. Ara took the other direction and became a renowned shark biologist who doesn’t see how she could ever balance a long term relationship with her work. Also, something I struggled with. And Mari, the heroine of Stolen Love is my nurturer, who must draw clear boundaries (like I have to with kids, husband, expectations of others) or lose her sense of herself to love.

 

Was there a teacher or mentor in your life who helped nurture your writing?

 

Apart from the hundreds of published authors I’ve read and the tight clutch of critique partners who inspire me by letting be part of their own process? Yes. I’m learning now from Margie Lawson how to revise my images-5work using her incredible (patented) Deep EDITS method. It’s really helped the anal plotter in me have a security blanket of techniques to trim, tailor and tighten my finished product. She’s going to be at the RWA conference in San Antonio and I’m doing an Immersion class with her in October in Colorado. Can’t wait!

 

Every author has the moment when they doubt their ability to write. When that happens to you, how do you pull yourself up by the bootstraps and continue? What do you do to inspire yourself?

 

images-30Read the work of others. If it’s good writing, it inspires me to emulate. If it’s bad writing (and we’ve all know that’s out there), I’m motivated to create something better. Sometimes I take a movie or Netflix break and absorb the stories of others. Having had success as an actor helps because I really believe in transferable skills, especially when the subject matter—capturing human emotion and growth—is the same. Connection with others, with life and nature (especially water) all help build the fire and itch to plot and stitch words together.

 

661f92_ff2541fde8b1431982d0f47354f3954e.jpg_srz_156_234_85_22_0.50_1.20_0.00_jpg_srzWhat fun questions! Please keep the blog hop going. Next stop, the award winning (and very loveable):

http://veronicaforand.com

 

 

(This is Veronica’s October release)

 

Romance Weekly #LoveWriteChat

1609641_3842918449588_1676216610_n Unknown

Welcome to Kim Town. My part of the blog hop of talented romance authors responding to a weekly set of questions. This week’s questions come from The Blue Rose Romance authoress, Collette Cameron. If you haven’t done so, scoop up her latest Regency Romance The Earl’s Enticement for a great summer read!

 

How do you respond to someone calling your writing smut or demeaning your work in some other way?   I think it’s more a reflection on them than on me. They either haven’t read the genre, in which case they are pre-judging. Prejudice is a transferable trait (if one is prejudiced in one area they can be in others) so I would infer from their comment the naysayer is a person who takes shortcuts and doesn’t necessarily indulge in independent thought. If the person 4945217075_a8f47b38c5_zmattered to me in some way or another, I might attempt a debate (for example, “romance novels are modern revisions of patriarchal fairytales, plus women like sex – get over it,” – for some specific good references raid Jenny Crusie’s arsenal i.e.: http://www.jennycrusie.com/for-writers/essays/glee-and-sympathy/ she puts Nathaniel Hawthorne in his place) but more likely than not, I’d decide to keep my pearls rather than cast them.

When critiquing or beta reading, do you ever find the voice of the other author creeping into your writing? images-2Yes. But only in a phrase here or a suggestion there. And only in the early phase of a book/chapter. Usually by the time, I’ve done the number of re-writes it takes for me to be satisfied with my work, (enormous – which is part of the reason why I’m still unpublished) those phrases/suggestions have been filtered, molded and otherwise touched into my words/ideas/voice again.

What’s one quirky thing you do or must have around you while writing? imagesI don’t like to write at a desk when I’m creating or revamping. Then I must be on a couch, lounge chair, rocking chair (with feet up) or the stairs of my back balcony. But when I’m critiquing my own work, that’s when I need that flat table or desktop and hard wooden chair. (I think it harkens back to Sister Mercedes and the other nuns I try to channel from part of my childhood) To plot, I must have a crystal cat given to me wonderful authoress Sarah Hegger nearby. Kitty’s kind of a talisman.

 

 

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Next stop on the blog hop: Susan Scott Shelley, whose book Tackled By the Girl Next Door, on Wild Rose Press I can’t wait to read. It’s out in October. Isn’t her cover gorgeous? http://www.susanscottshelley.com/#!blog/c1cod

Lucky 7

lucky7

 

The infinitely fun and slightly wicked Rhenna Morgan pulled a fast one on me this morning and tagged me in The Lucky 7 game.

http://rhennamorgan.com/playing-lucky-7/#.U57iNgiRGUA.facebook

 

The rules:

Go to page 7 or 77 in your current WIP.

Go to line 7

Post on your blog the next 7 sentence or 7 lines—as they are!

Tag 7 people and do the same

You can choose between page 7 or 77.

images-4So, from my WIP Stolen Kiss, page 7

 

Ah. This was her code red hottie. Shock of unruly hair, cobalt blue eyes, tall. It fit.

“Listen.” His eyes intense like lasers. “My brother is in danger. Help me save him by pretending to be my girlfriend for a few minutes. If they start asking questions, let me do the talking. Please.”

Ruby was about to protest, but his hand trailed up and down along her spine spreading a warm shiver down the backs of her legs. More delicious than devil’s food cake.

 

Voila!

 

Now I have to tag 7 others, so

 

September-21-2011-22-10-21-cat044Vicki Mixon

Susan Petersen Wisnewski

Liz Berquist

J.J. Devine

Jami Gold

Debbie Robbins

Kristen Lamb

 

Tag! You’re it!

xoxxo

 

Friday 13th & the Feminine

81f551274210531ef94de3b03dbb836abf1dd550_mPerverse creature that I am, I always thought Friday the 13th should be lucky. Turns out, I’m right!

13 is a lucky number at least it used to be.

Why? Societies used to track time by the moon. We have 13 moons in a year, so all the lunar calendars (Jewish, Egyptian, etc) were based on thirteen. And the age of thirteen is when kids are called to the Bar for their Bar Mitzvah.

 

When I was a kid in Sunday school class, I remember one of my teachers saying 12 was lucky, because that was the number of Disciples. But it was thirteen if you counted Jesus. Or if you counted Mary Magdalene, who some say was the thirteenth disciple.

images-3 22-00-41Then there’s the connection with the feminine.

You now, women + moon = menses. I don’t know about you, but there’ve been times when it felt like the moon was pulling my insides out on a monthly basis.

freyaHow many women in a witch’s coven? 13. Because it’s a power number.

And Friday is a feminine power day too. Named after Frig or Freya, the most powerful feminine Norse goddess. She also had ties to Venus—another feminine symbol.

There’s only one Friday the 13th this whole year, but she’s a doozy. Today is also a full moon and if you consult you astrological calendar, you’ll see today Mercury is retrograde, which basically means communications do not go as planned. Contracts should not be signed today. It’s a good day to generate ideas though. Brainstorm!

How else can you take advantage of Friday the 13th and harness some of its power?

images-29Revel in the feminine today. Pamper yourself. If you’re a guy, connect with your inner female. Go with the flow. Celebrate beauty, home, love, passion and sex. Get with your loved one, or hey, read a romance novel. 😉

#LoveWriteChat

 

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images-8Ever wonder how the minds of authors tick? Welcome to Romance Weekly, the blog tour where we unscrew the watch face and let you see the inner workings. If you’ve come from Rhenna Morgan site, welcome! This week’s questions come from moi, with a little inspiration from Ryan.

 

What’s your ideal: alpha or beta and why?

RYAN-GOSLING-MEME-2In life, my first love was an alpha male and that didn’t work out so well. My first husband was a beta and that sucked too. The man I’ve been married to for 20+ years is a beta with a nice slice of alpha on the side. And I think that’s the kind of hero in fiction I’m most drawn to as well. I need that kind of rev in the girl parts a good alpha hero triggers, and the gooey marshmallow center he eventually reveals, but fervent feminist that I am, the beta has appeal that speaks to the staying power required of a happily ever after. (in my humble opinion) And apparently some people call this combo kind of guy a gamma. Others say a gamma is indifferent to the heroine (thus my reluctance to use that term) and why I prefer to call him Combo Man. Ooh. Then we’d have the A,B,C’s of heroes, right? Alpha, Beta, Combo. Purrrr.

Do you have a male buddy or mate you use for confirmation or inspiration when crafting your heroes? 80-best-ryan-gosling-hey-large-msg-136752204773

I absolutely talk to my darling husband, Edward for references on all things male. Underwear preferences. The male nipple arousal myth. All the naughty stuff. I have to keep in mind he has a very developed Yin. So not all his answers may apply. Other inspirations may come from movies, billboards, people on the street, observations. Then there’s the heroes themselves. Once they’re fully formed in my imagination. I talk to them. Ask them. What would you do Matt? Gus? Seb? And of course, they talk back. As long as no one consults the DSM IV criteria (of Mental Disorders), I’m still good.

What does any hero have to do to win your heart?

tumblr_lytzrqtBOc1r9ggz7o1_500Love the heroine. Be her rock. Be willing to humble (not humiliate) himself in front of her. Be willing to listen. Treat her right. Those are the most important things. In the not necessary, but-it’s-kind-of-like-topping-on-ice-cream category, he needs to be able to tick off one little attribute from my hero check list: he’s a good cook, OR he brings home lots of money OR he can fix anything OR he gives killer massage.

 

 

 

This was fun! Let’s hop on to Heart’s Ease series author Victoria Barbour’s site and see how she answered these questions.

http://victoriabarbour.com/blog Heart's Ease Banner

Comments make my day! ❤

#LoveWriteChat

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Blog hopping with fabulous Authors. That’s what we do here on Romance Weekly. If you’ve just come from Collette Cameron’s site, (author of The Earl’s Enticement) welcome. If you’ve popped in from fb or Twitter, welcome, welcome. This week’s questions are from Victoria Barbour, author of The Heart’s Ease series, set in breathtaking Newfoundland.

Have you always written Romance?

 

No. I started writing when I was 11. So, sci fi, adventures for girls, mysteries. In my twenties, I was a journalist. Strictly the facts ma’am. Although I was an avid reader of Romance (and multiple other genres) I didn’t really understand Romance until my thirties.  Had to build up enough life experience and sort out my own peccadilloes, I suppose. By then I grasped that Romance was more than a story about falling in love—‘cause falling in love may happen a few times in life. But it’s about how two people fall in love and problem solve together, how each inspires good in the other and how they discover not that one can’t live without the other, but that ‘my life is better with you in it than without you.”

 

How do you deal with critiques about the romance genre?

 

1992 Book Cover

1992 Book Cover

Chuckle, chuckle. I have a number of academic family members and many friends infused with cynicism borne of a life in media, so critiques abound. I refer some to a favorite Jayne Ann Krentz tome of mine, “Dangerous Men & Adventurous Women,” which features interviews and essays from writers of the genre on how Romance is the inversion of the power structure of a patriarchal society and how it celebrates the courage, strength, gentleness, and intelligence of  women and the joyous integration of both sexes. That often shuts them up. I might also add, ‘Romance novels were borne of the suffragette and women’s movement in the 19th century and celebrate one of equal right’s first freedoms: the ability to marry for love.’  Other tidbits I’ve been known to say in defence of my chosen medium: ‘No other genre consistently casts women in the main role’. ‘Romance novels feature one of the things women are fascinated with: relationship.’ ‘It’s the only genre where a woman literally brings a man to his knees.’

 

What’s the one thing about our genre you’d like people to know?

 

From The Big Bang Theory

From The Big Bang Theory

As you may be able to guess, I’m pretty good with justifying and promoting Romance when comparisons are made to other genres. To those who argue ‘Oh, but it’s so formulaic,’ I’d counter, “No more than mystery: someone dies, someone figures out who did it.” Boom. Romance novels are popular entertainment. And should be treated and admired as such. You could compare them to television series, films or popular music. Spectator sports, for that matter. (Btw: How many of us pull out a romance novel while significant other is engrossed in a game on TV?) Some romances delve into serious themes, like the TV series Heartland, some are on the lighter side, like The Big Bang Theory. They are not and never will be literature, in the same way foreign film festivals are apples to Hollywood’s oranges. To answer the question: Romance novels are valuable popular entertainment.

 

UnknownI hope you had fun. I did. And I ❤ your comments. The blog hop isn’t over! Next up: Meggan Connors who’s latest book, Highland Deception, I loved.   Check her out:

htttp://megganconnors.wordpress.com/blog/