Well Jane, I think I can safely say I just love the past. I always have. The books I read, the films I love best, are usually historical. And it wasn’t all that different in terms of the emotion. Look at how turbulent the big events in history were. Look at how, for example we love the drama of Henry V111 and Anne Boleyn. For all the times that story has been told I still reckon there’s a story there that has not been told.
I chose to write romance because I thought it was possible to get into the industry that way. Obviously when it came to choice of genre, there was only one!
What inspires you to create your dark, sexy, historical romances?
I’d love to say it’s a painting, or an old place. I do love old places and I squirrel them away for use. But all my stories start with a simple image, or premise. I have no idea what’s going to happen next. If only.
Lady Fury your first heroine, if I can call her that, has her own blog ‘Furious Unravelings’. Can you tell us how that evolved?
I reckon you’ve said it there yourself. ‘If I can call her that’. That’s the reason she has her own blog. My second book was coming out and I feared the havoc she would wreak not being centre of attention. So I thought I’d move her. Also, I did think that giving her a pirates’ book club would let me help promote other authors, as well as giving her something to do keeping the guys in about, even if they can’t read.
My experiences at the book club were very memorable you can read them by clicking on the links:
Now onto your other ladies who are also tempted by bright sparkly treasures.
Was there a particular event in history that inspired you to write your London Jewel Thieves series? What can we expect in book 2?
Talking these little flashes, I could see a coach, a woman with a necklace she’d stolen and her planting it on this guy and completely ruining his life. That was it. I started writing, I called her Sapphire and filled in the back story, putting her in this gang of thieves. Then I called her friends Ruby and Pearl. As I was doing this I began to think that some of these other women, I was mentioning could have their own story as part of a series.
Book two which is nearly finished is about Splendor. She’s not a thief, she was their skivvy and now the gang has broken up, she’s living on her wits, calling herself Splendor (as you do, her real name’s Dora) and trying to win a fortune in a chess competition. She’s a sort of Cinderella. But things get badly out of hand. Will she end up with Prince Charming, Buttons, or dead on a duelling field? My lips are sealed.
Can’t wait. If you haven’t read Loving Lady Lazuli yet, the first book in the London Jewel Thieves series, check out my review here.
Your stories are characterised by their wonderful dialogue. Do you find this easy to write? Any tips for writing realistic dialogue?
They are? I’m so glad you got that 20 quid and didn’t ask for more. I’d have been skint otherwise. Dialogue? Well, I guess I have one basic rule. Don’t waste a word. I used to write for Bunty and M+J (girls’ comics). You did it in frames. You wrote the dialogue and the instructions to the artist in each frame, so many frames to a script. You basically had to think in captioned photos. Perhaps because I did that I don’t find dialogue difficult to write. Narrative, yes. In fact I have to stop myself writing dialogue, or there would be a book of it. Tips? Well, I think plays really show you how to advance a scene with no narrative. So read some. Also remember that men and women use very different words and regard things totally differently. Think about your character’s sex and personality as well as their goal in each scene. They are bringing that to the table when it comes to what they are going to say and how they will say it. Also it doesn’t matter if it’s two lines of dialogue between a lesser and a major character. Don’t waste it.
Great advice and would you believe I used to read ‘Bunty’ many moons ago it was a fab comic. 🙂
You are a great supporter of other writers, myself included. How important are the blogging and writing communities to a writer’s success?
Okay, for some that might not be important at all. Obviously there’s writers who make it without that. But I think for those with smaller publishers, who can’t throw any money at promoting their authors, it’s vital. Personally I’m a big believer in supporting other authors. I’ve made some wonderful friends that way in both the writing and the blogging communities, including yourself Jane. These are people I would never have known if I’d stuck to the me, my book and my book mantra. It costs nothing to help someone.
Have you ever wanted to write a story in another genre? If so which one?
I used to write stories for my school pals years ago. They were historical epiccy things. I would like to write in that genre, historical fiction as opposed to romance. I’m considering having a look at them again and thinking about their focus.
I know that you have a new release in the summer with Soul Mate publishing can you share a few secrets about your latest story?
OOH. Well, The Viking and The Courtesan is a time slip story featuring Sin, a sumexy Viking and Malice a Regency lady who runs a marriage wrecking business. The blurb probably explains it best. I’m happy to let you have first sharie.
‘In 898 AD she wasn’t just from another land.
Wrecking a marriage is generally no problem for the divorce obtaining, Lady Malice Mallender. But she faces a dilemma when she’s asked to ruin her own. Just how businesslike should she remain when the marriage was never consummated and kissing her husband leads to Sin–a handsome Viking who wants her for a bed slave in name only? She came from another time. Viking raider Sin Gudrunsson wants one thing. To marry his childhood sweetheart. Only she’s left him before, so he needs to keep her on her toes, and a bed slave, in name only, seems just the thing. Until he meets Malice. One kiss is all it takes to flash between two worlds But when one kiss is no longer enough, which will it be? Regency London? Or Viking Norway? Will Malice learn what governs the flashes? Can Sin? Where worlds collide can love melt the iciest heart?’
It sounds amazing, historical, time slip romance – I can’t wait to read it.
What type of books do you like to read? Any favourite authors?
Hmm. I love the hard boiled writers, Cain and Mcoy. Talking dialogue they never wasted a letter never mind a word. Give me F Scott Fitzgerald. Oh and Margaret Mitchell. Coming more up to date, I loved discovering Kate Furnivall and Kate Atkinson. I will read pretty well any genre, history mainly but I like suspense too. And I’m not just saying it because I’ve met many wonderful authors and some of these authors have become friends, but I do love reading Incy Black, Antonia Van Zandt, Noelle Clark, Catherine Cavendish, Sharon Struth and your good self. I would enjoy these books anyway.
I can’t let you go without mentioning the ‘hamstahs’. They’re an integral part of your blog now. What inspired you to introduce them to us?
Lol! Ok. I was looking at the entries on this pitch comp and some had everything but the kitchen sink flung in. So I thought I’d blog the basic rules of romance writing and I had this person thinking how they would put in the French Revolution, the Druids of Stonehenge and the emancipation of women. At the last for some reason I changed that to hamsters. I think it might have been Antonia Van Zandt who asked what was that about? So next blog I let them on. There is something very expressive about their faces so of course I let them speak. They haven’t shut up since.
I’m now going to but before I do can I just thank you for inviting me to your fabulous blog Jane. I’ve loved being here.
So glad you found time to visit me and I look forward to welcoming Lady Fury soon. If you want to know more about Lady Fury’s unraveling read my review here.