Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Why I Write Historical Romance

Every writer has a central theme that resonates in their writing. For some, it's redemption; for others, it's hope or love conquers all. But it took me a long time to figure out what mine was. After writing six novels, I still didn't know. When I complained about this to a brilliant author friend of mine who is familiar with my work, she didn't hesitate. "It's betrayal," she told me. "All your books deal with betrayal."

She was right. I tend to write about characters overcoming betrayal and learning to trust someone who has become untrustworthy. Sometimes it's my hero who breaks the heroine's heart, and sometimes it's the other way around, but nearly all my books deal with this issue.

Of course, once I figured this out, it led to a lot of self-examination. Why is this subject the one that captures my creative juices? Why do I spend so much energy playing with themes of betrayal and forgiveness?

I decided it was because I have been both the betrayer and the betrayed in my personal life and have discovered that all relationships have times of adversity. But I believe adversity can burn through all the shallow reasons most people get together and reveal the truth about what lies beneath.

In today's society, it's far too easy to walk away from love when the going gets tough. When someone hurts us, it's easier to start again with someone new than to try and rebuild something that's been damaged. But odds are that sometime during that new relationship, you'll be hurt again. Too many people go from one relationship to the next, bailing out whenever things get dicey and never find the depth of love that only comes when you've walked through some fire together.

Up until about fifty years ago, it was much harder to walk away. Divorce was almost unheard of. I'm sure that made for a lot of very unhappy people. Men were controlling and women had no rights. But I also wonder how many people were able to forge long and lasting love affairs because they were forced to deal with their problems.

I've tried to write contemporaries, but I can't seem to do it. Let's face it, when your sister or best friend comes to you and tells you some guy cheated on her or lied to her, what is your first reaction? Leave the son of a bitch! LOL Women today have so many choices and resources that it often doesn't make sense to stay.

But put that same girl in a medieval castle or the old west, and what other choice does she have? She can either forgive the guy and try to rebuild the relationship, or hate him for the rest of her life but still have to deal with him every day.

I have to clarify that the characters in my books are good people put in bad situations. They do everything they can not to hurt the ones they love. But sometimes people make bad decisions and deserve a second chance. I try to give it to them, because someone once gave me a second chance. The same someone I've been happily married to for twenty years. J

Sexy Man of the Week!

This is how I picture Kieran from A KNIGHT IN HALCYON!


Cool Graphics and More

Monday, March 26, 2007

Atlantis!!

My new release, A KNIGHT IN HALCYON centers on the Atlantis myth and I had a blast writing it. In fact, it almost wrote itself and I finished it so quickly it was done before I had a chance to read all the Atlantis reference material I'd gathered. But when I stumbled across something which tied the Atlantis myth to the elves of Britain, my mind went into overdrive. But since I'd already come so far with AKIH, I decided to write another, bigger, historical fantasy with this new premise. I wanted to start the book with a fairytale feel, yet encorporate the entire premise, so it took me almost a month to write these two pages. LOL I'd love some input!!

We were here long before you.

For thousands of years our civilization flourished. Our great island city grew rich on trade and shipping. We ruled the world, and thought our reign would never end.

But nothing lasts forever.

The first time fire fell from the sky, the ground shook, and the ocean rose up in a terrible wave, killing thousands, but our city survived. When it was over, we rebuilt, and became stronger than ever.

For another fifty years, we continued as though nothing had happened, but the great fire snake continued to circle above, biding its time and waiting. A handful of our greatest minds - scientists, architects and philosophers – read the portents and realized that the end was near. We began to plot and plan, determined that our culture and knowledge would not die.

Over the next decade, we pillaged the great libraries of the world and recruited the best and brightest to our cause. Darkness and destruction were coming, and it would take all of our combined skills to defeat it.

We left our island home for the frigid northern climes, settling in the great, underground caverns of Britain. Deep in the bowels of the earth, we learned to harness the power of our subterranean water supply and channeled it to light our settlement. We found ways to grow crops in this false light and then waited for the inevitable.

This time was much worse than before. The tail of the comet dissolved in the earth's atmosphere, bits and pieces exploding across land and sea alike, causing untold death and destruction. As feared, our beautiful city sank beneath the sea. The skies turned black and the very air became a poisonous fume. The water was unsafe to drink, and crops and livestock died.

We were safe in our cavern, but had never imagined how long the blight would last. Generations lived and died below the surface, while the earth tried to recover from the mighty blow she'd been dealt. For nearly a hundred years, we taught our children history and philosophy and made new scientific breakthroughs, safe, if not content, in our underground home.

By the time the sky cleared and the ground became green and fertile, we had advanced light years. But when we finally returned to the surface we found that the rest of humanity had not been so lucky. Millions had died, and those who hadn't had been too busy with the business of survival to worry about preserving their knowledge or culture. The great civilizations of Egypt and Samaria, Greece and others had fallen, leaving behind men who were mere steps above the apes, so full of hysteria and superstition that they looked upon our lordly blond scholars with terror and suspicion.

At less than five hundred in number, we were forced to return to the caverns, venturing out less and less as we became hunted and persecuted. And so we became myth and then faded into legend.

We were called fey, and elvish and spoken of in whispers until we knew we were not even safe beneath the ground. Fearing for our lives, we were forced to go even deeper, beneath the sparkling waves of the north Atlantic, where we built a crystal city, completely self-contained and indestructible. We left the green shores of Britain with no little regret. For two thousand years we have waited for those on the surface to advance enough to accept us, so that we may walk in sunlight once again.

But some of us grow weary of the wait...

Morel Sales!!!

Since my last post I've made a few new sales! I sold A Knight In Halcyon, which is my first fantasy/historical to Cobblestone Press and The American Heiress, a Victorian historical to The Wild Rose Press! The American Heiress will be my first book in print, and I'm VERY excited about that!!