Tag Archives: Book Writing

Romance Weekly: Take Away


This week’s questions are from Julie Abdinoor. If you like romance, and want to know how writers think, follow the links and see how everyone else answered.

1. What are the ages of your characters?

In Highland Deception, Isobel is twenty-two, and Malcolm/Kenneth is almost thirty. Because it was set in 1725, it made more sense to have him be older than she.

2. What special things or places inspire you to write?

Music inspires me always. I do best when I’ve assigned a song to a character–that way, when I’m writing a scene, I can listen to a song and it helps me really get into the character’s head. It’s weird though, how music chooses to inspire me. For instance, for my latest WIP, Devil of Dunmoor, the song Counting Stars  by One Republic makes me think of my hero, Ethan. Which is so weird, because I really thought The Last of the Mohicans sound track would be my inspiration.

Places that inspire me? Well, I finished my first three or four books in Fort Bragg, California, in a little motel near the water. The place is rink-dink and as fantastic as a 1970s leisure suit–all the tile is cracked in the bathrooms, and the decor is… um… dated, but I love that place. The showers are hot (and I mean really hot) and it has a great little path down to a private beach, and that makes it totally worth it.

The last book, though? Not so much. We got a little trailer over the summer, and now, instead of our trip to Fort Bragg, we’re going to new and different places. I actually plotted Devil of Dunmoor in Valley of Fire State Park, in Southern Nevada. I still love the ocean, and I think it would be great inspiration for the Scottish moors (because there really is something about that place–especially if you go north toward Eureka–that reminds me of the Irish Sea. It’s more of a feeling I get when I’m there as opposed to actual physical similarities, though).

3. What is one message that you hope women will receive when they read your stories?

Well, I’ve already talked a little about how the one thing I want people to take away from my stories is a sense of hope. That there is hope that things will work out for the better, and that everyone will get their happy ending. That there is hope that we will all find the love and the happiness we deserve.

But more than that, I think what I want women in particular to take away from my books is that they deserve the fairy tale. We deserve a man who will love us with his dying breath, who would move heaven and earth for us. We deserve to feel loved, to be wanted, and to have great sex. We deserve our own heroes. They may be imperfect, they may have crummy days and be crabby, but at the end of the day, the men in our lives should be heroic.

I know mine is.

Follow the link to find out what SC MItchell has to say on the subject!


I Got a Clencher!

I got my cover for my book today.

It’s a really nice cover. I’m excited and freaked out and thrilled beyond belief. I still can’t believe this happened to me.

You’d think, being a writer, that I would have something to say about this, but I don’t. There are no words to describe the feeling that comes from seeing the cover of your first book for the first time.

I thought, when this moment came, I’d be giddy, and I am. But I think, more than that, I saw this cover and my brain… stuttered.

For a moment–okay, for a period of time somewhat longer than a moment–in the space between my ears, there was only the sound of crickets. It sounds like I’m kidding, but sadly, I’m not. Crickets.

And after that, all those little crickets started singing in their little cricket voices… Oh. My God. It’s actually real.

I knew it was real before–after all, I signed a contract. But it all felt very academic. I made jokes about getting published, but I’m not sure I believed it until I saw the cover with my name on it.

I worked really hard to get here. I have stayed up to all hours of the night working on my  various manuscripts, and gotten up the next morning and gone to work, coached soccer, taken the kids to swimming and done all those things I have to do as a responsible adult. And then, in the wee hours of the morning, I wrote and I wrote and I wrote some more, even though there was no tangible reward at the end of that journey, just the prospect of querying and writing, entering contests (sometimes finaling, sometimes not), getting rejections and feeling like a failure and a hack.

I queried two places with this book, and neither of them were the original publisher I’d hoped to land when I started it (mostly because, by the time I finished it, the book no longer fit the guidelines specified by the original publisher). I only queried this particular publisher not that long ago.

So it all felt unreal when I got “The Call.”

It felt unreal when I got the contract.

And now… uh… it’s real.

Welcome The Marker, my debut novel, coming out in December of 2011 from Soul Mate Publishing.

This cover does a really nice job of encapsulating my entire story, from the couple at the top to the saloon at the bottom. I think that’s what good covers do.

What are some of your favorite book covers, and what do you think a cover should portray?