A SHORT-BREAK & MOCKTAILS WITH
THE ROMANTIC MUSE (TRM)
AP Castell: Hmm, smell that fresh country air.
Jennie Jones: Thanks for organising this AP. It’s really countrified out here, isn’t it?AP Castell: My pleasure. Yep, though I must admit, I underestimated just how far this place was from the nearest town.
Jennie Jones: It was a long drive but I packed a few chocolate bars,Carolyn Wren: I packed a few dozen chocolate bars because I’m hopeless at reading my GPS. Surprisingly, I only got lost 3 times. It’s a personal record.
have my bottle of bubbly ready to put in the fridge! Happy!
AP Castell: Three times, not bad. My chocolate stash was in the boot of the car. I could have used some after swerving to miss a wallaby. Just about gave me a heart attack. It looks like everyone else found the bungalow without incident?Whitney K-E: I wouldn’t say without incident. Did I mention I am hopeless with directions? And coffee?! I couldn’t find anywhere that sold a good coffee.
AP Castell: Gotta hate that. You know, I’m feeling a little guilty sitting out here on this deck catching rays, while the rest of the world is hard at it. *sighs contentedly*Jennie Jones: Em – nope, AP. I don’t feel guilty at all.
Whitney K-E: Hehe, I agree with Jennie.Carolyn Wren: My poor little fingers are worn down to the bone with editing, I refuse to feel guilty today… hand over a chocolate.
AP Castell: Here catch. Good thing we all brought multiple boxes. *pops chocolate in her mouth & leans back in deckchair* You girls are right, I shouldn’t feel guilty, we all needed this break. The year is flying by, so much has happened in the last six months. *grabs another chocolate*It was only this January that, Whitney was holidaying in Ireland and by the end of February, What Happens in Ireland, was contracted to, Secret Cravings Publishing. Two dreams fulfilled in such a short time. That has got to feel pretty awesome Whitney?
Whitney K-E: Sure does! I miss Ireland so much. Think about it every day which keeps the Muse busy writing and editing the rest of the series. Maybe on our next vacation, I can drag you three to Killarney?Jennie Jones: Count me in!
AP Castell: Yes, please. Ireland is definitely on my, Bucket List. Do you recall what inspired the original idea for your story, Whitney?Whitney K-E: I was planning my trip to Ireland with my best friend and sister. And from there grew my novels. J I had a two year long wait before I could go to Ireland. And I spent the entire time dreaming about it and writing my novels.
AP Castell: I’d be dreaming too.Then there was the release of, The Scientist, Carolyn’s second book early in the new year. And if that wasn’t enough good news, Jennie calmly announces she’s an Escape Artist! I took this literally, thinking you had been taking magic lessons on the side and keeping it from your TRM buddies.
Sorry, couldn’t resist a little teasing, Jennie. Who can blame me? You sing, dance and act. So the magic idea is plausible. *winks*Seriously though, The House on Burra Burra Lane, was published this June with Harlequin (Australia) Escape Publishing. The transition to author happened in a whirlwind. In hindsight is there anything you would have done differently to arrive at this point?
Jennie Jones: Heck, I don’t know. No. Yes – well, sort of, maybe (Whitney, could you pass my bottle of bubbly please?).Actually, AP, yes! I think my stars were aligned but I also recognised that they’d only be in my sky for so long and that I needed to grasp the opportunity and launch myself into the unknown. That meant I had to do some hard graft if I wanted to slide down a rainbow. I’d been writing (in beginning mode) for nearly two years and for me, the learning curve was hard to grasp. Writing fiction didn’t come easily - but I didn’t give up (through tears or smiles). I like to think I took up the challenge for myself and that’s the reason why I got published. It’s not just about writing for yourself, it’s about putting yourself wholeheartedly into the open market of competitions and feedback, which is a scary scenario. (Whitney, pass that bottle again, would you?)
Whitney K-E: Bubbly? I don’t see any bubbly. But I do see a bottle of Bushmills. Hehe, shots anyone? Or a hot totty?AP Castell: I’ll have a shot, since the champers has grown legs.
So what’s your favourite quote/line from, The House On Burra Burra Lane, Jennie? After a couple of glasses of champagne let’s see if you can still recite it off the top of your head. *g*Jennie Jones: This is the start of my second glass – and stop counting would you, AP? My fave line is ‘I want to hold her hand and walk up the hill at the back of town with her. I want to show her the wildflowers and tell her I’ll buy the whole damned field if she’ll only listen.’
AP Castell: Aw, lovely, very romantic. Ethan is so gorgeous, poor tortured soul. *accepts shot-glass from Whitney* Thanks. *downs it*Carolyn, you’re looking very relaxed over there in the hammock. We’re not keeping you awake are we?
Jennie Jones: It’s okay, AP – she’s editing in her head. She’ll come right out of it when necessary (she can multi-task like no woman I know).AP Castell: Ha! So true.
Carolyn Wren: Hmm? What? Oh sorry, I was visualising Simon Winters wet, with a very small towel wrapped around his waist…AP Castell: Oh, my God!
Carolyn Wren: Can someone pick AP off of the floor, please?AP Castell: Has it suddenly gotten hotter out here or what? *fans face with empty chocolate box*Ahem. Yeah, well it would be safer if you were asleep, if you’re going to randomly drop one liners like that!
Actually talking of hot, this month (1st August) saw the release of, The Widower’s Child. Book five in The Protector Series. This comes less than twelve months after you won, RWA’s Emerald Award for, The Hostage. It was shortly after, that you secured a contract with, Secret Cravings Publishing for the entire seven book series. That’s an amazing achievement, Carolyn. (Clearly a workaholic as well as a chocaholic.)With a book released every two months; you’re working to an incredibly tight schedule. What has surprised you the most about the whole process?
Carolyn Wren: My ability to do it! This is a dream, but not a pensive -stare into the distance with stars in my eyes- dream. It’s a head down, fingers working, brain spinning, 3D roller coast ride sort of a dream. And, of course, I’m loving every minute of it. When I started this, when I entered the Emerald, I didn’t even know how to set a margin. Fast forward twelve months and I’m pretty good at separating my POV to avoid the dreaded head hopping, clearing out those nasty over repeated words, structuring my chapters…you know, all the stuff a real writer does.AP Castell: Aha, and what advice would you give new writers just beginning their journey?
Carolyn Wren: Write, write, write. It doesn’t matter if you think what you’re writing is dreadful, and should never be read by anyone. Keep going. If necessary, walk away and come back to the story later. You might find one idea, one chapter, or even a single line that feels ‘right.’ Take that line and run with it. Don’t write for a publisher, or for an editor, not initially anyway. Write because you love it, and worry about all the other stuff later.AP Castell: Great advice. *struggles with the plastic wrapper on a new box of chocolates* What’s everyone working on at present?
Jennie Jones: I’m trying to catch up with Carolyn Wren! And I can’t even think straight when I see what Whitney K-E is coming up with next.Whitney K-E: I’m working on Deceive Me in Ireland, book two in my Irish series. And a warning ladies. Jack was gorgeous, loveable and well... irresistible. But his brother William is an utter heartthrob. :P
Jennie Jones:: Like I said, Whitney – don’t leave me out of your next Ireland trip.Carolyn Wren: I’ve read some of Deceive Me in Ireland, trust me, William is gorgeous I’m hoping Jennie is working on a certain book containing a character called Ella because I’m dying to read the rest of it! Don’t think you escape, AP, there are a number of your WIP I want to read too.
AP Castell: *pretends a great interest in choosing a chocolate*Carolyn Wren: What am I working on?
Hmm let’s see. I just did pre edits on Protectors book 6 coming out in October, and my Christmas Ghost story Ghosts Of Grace Cottage, coming out in December. I am planning pre edits for Protectors book 7, also released in December, polishing my full length paranormal story called Empathy, and my modern day fairy story Tail of Winthrope Hall (not a typo) and my mammoth 3 book vampire series called The Stolen Ones that I wrote for a friend for her birthday (just for fun.) In my spare time, I’m sleeping.AP Castell: You mean plotting scenes starring half naked men.
I’ve put my fantasy, Dawn of the Sorcerer aside for the moment to concentrate on, a contemporary about a couple who are complete opposites in just about every way. It’s a fun story to write, though there is a more serious plot underlining the quirky side. The other day I went back and read the first chapter, surprisingly I really enjoyed it. *g*Are you ever tempted to read over previous chapters of your WIP? If so, how do you prevent yourself from tweaking/editing?
Jennie Jones: Oh that’s hard for me. I love to edit as I go, but have learned to find a better medium that allows my creative self to just write regardless of content – just get it down on paper. (Then I sneak back and edit.)Whitney K-E: Nope. The first draft is spat out in whole for me. I don’t make any changes until I edit. I’m one of those writers who writes in the moment. No going back until the dirty draft is complete!
Carolyn Wren: I write, then I edit. I can’t do both at once. When I finish the entire story, then I go back, find the weak bits, and try to fix them.AP Castell: What about a new story idea?
In my case, inspiration for a story begins with a clear picture of the hero and heroines physical appearance. This includes accents, injuries/afflictions, habits etc. attributed to each character. The plot is revealed in a similar way, the characters communicating their motivations and goals through their actions. How do your stories/characters come to be?Whitney K-E: Hmm. I started with an ending for What Happens in Ireland, a beginning for Deceive me in Ireland and Back to Ireland begins in the middle of Deceive me in Ireland hehe. My heroines are somewhat a part of me, exhibiting some of my personality traits, yet blown out of context. And my heroes...*takes a moment to wipe drool from mouth* they are self-made men hehe. They create themselves.
Carolyn Wren: I need a prologue, an epilogue and a love scene. My characters often don’t have names or any physical traits in the beginning, but they need a strong connection. I think that’s why I go for the love scene first. Not necessarily an erotic love scene. It could be just a kiss, or a simple touch on the arm, or a look across a room…or a hostage tied up in a room and the covert operative watching him in the darkness, wondering how she will get him out. Once I feel that spark between my hero and heroine, then I create the story around them.Jennie Jones: I start with a scene that pops into my mind. The characters appear in that scene/scenario and I take it from there.
AP Castell: While writing your story did you ever reach a point where you questioned whether the obstacles/challenges you set your hero &/or heroine were too great for them to overcome? (Was their HEA ever in jeopardy?)Whitney K-E: No. I had trouble with conflict to begin with. But it’s something I’ve overcome. I’m a plotter these days and it helps to avoid writerly pitfalls.
Jennie Jones: Yes! And no. My problem to begin with was not giving the characters enough to overcome. The HEA was never in jeopardy but how to get them from start to HEA was definitely in jeopardyCarolyn Wren: Nope. I love putting my heroes and heroines as much in jeopardy as physically possible. The advantage of Romantic Suspense is being able to throw everything at your characters and forcing them to get out of trouble. If I put them into a pit with fire breathing dragons, I have to think of a way to rescue them, no wimping out.
AP Castell: Talk about getting all deep and meaningful. *g* It’s getting late and I’m feeling cold now that the sun is setting. Why don’t we head indoors, light the fire and make a round of mocktails?Jennie Jones: Mocktails? (Whitney, I haven’t finished that whole bottle of bubbly yet, have I?)
Whitney K-E: Again Jennie, what bubbly hehe. :PJennie Jones: You’re teasing – right?
Carolyn Wren: Mocktails for Carolyn! I don’t drink alcohol due to an allergy I inherited from my dad, (gee, thanks dad), so Jennie can have the rest of my bubbly.AP Castell: Oh, you know what would be fun? If you each read an excerpt from the book you’re giving away in, TRM Triple E-Book pack.
Twenty minutes later the girls are all lounging around the fireplace with their drink of choice within reach.
To read excerpt click the link below
To read excerpt click the link below
To read excerpt click the link below
AP Castell: That was fantastic, what a marvellous day it’s been. We’ll have to do this again at the end of the year.Carolyn Wren: We need to do this a lot.
Jennie Jones: Oh no, is it over?Whitney K-E: Christmas in Ireland? hehe.
AP Castell: Absolutely Whitney, we’ll all be there.Jennie Jones: Next time, I’m bringing two bottles of bubbly.
AP Castell: I think a toast is in order. Everyone charge your glass.Jennie Jones: If you’re not going to drink that champers, Carolyn – I’ll have it.
AP Castell: “To, The Romantic Muse and another six months of success. Cheers!”Whitney K-E: To TRM! *swigs from bottle with an indistinguishable elegance*
Carolyn Wren: *hands over the champagne to Jennie and picks up her mocktail* To the Romantic Muse!
A SHORT-BREAK AND MOCKTAILS COMPETITIONFor a chance to win, TRM Triple E-Book Pack, comprising of; The House On Burra Burra Lane, What Happens In Ireland and The Hostage (available in either; e-pub, pdf or html format).
Simply answer the question below correctly to go into the draw.
Q. In what country do, TRM plan to spend Christmas?
Entries will be drawn 31st August 2013, using www.random.org/lists/Good luck, everyone!