New York Times bestselling author Claudia Connor and Penguin Random House/Loveswept editor Sue Grimshaw talk about paths to success and how they first met.
"When I first started writing, I kept getting the advice to write what you know, and so I did, especially when it came to the settings for my novels..."
"I once went on a forum for romance readers and asked, “So, sports romances?” and got crickets, aside from a couple of NASCAR romances. More power to readers who like those, but I don’t even own a car, so NASCAR’s not really my thing. I read a couple of ex-NFL player romances, but these were mostly heroes with the bodies of linebackers who had retired to become teachers or coaches or whatever, not active players. Nice, but it didn’t really scratch the itch..."
There are many theories regarding the soul and soulmates. The concept of a soulmate originates as far back as Ancient Greek writings. A soulmate was said to be the other half of an androgynous being who had been split in two by a wrathful god and only by reuniting with the other half of their soul would that being experience nirvana. Throughout the ages, its meaning has changed into today’s romantic notions of two souls traveling a number of lives, and in each subsequent lifetime they search, even unintentionally, for the other until they meet once again. In crafting Remember Me, I explored the notion of what if soulmates truly do exist?
Tattoo artist Sia O’Donnell from FULL CONTACT, the third book in the Redemption series of standalone erotic fighter romance novels, shares her top five romance book covers featuring tattooed heroes, and a few juicy tidbits about her own experiences with the love of her life, underground fighter, Ray.
There’s something about a rags-to-riches heroine who stays kind-hearted. This has to be the core appeal, but Disney recently gave the Cinderella romance an update…a really good update. Have you seen the new movie? I love Kenneth Branagh’s stylish take. The vivid colors. The set textures. Secondary characters with depth. And thank you, Mr. Branagh for giving us a prince with some dimension.
Today we welcome astronomer, musician, and author Alan Smale to talk about his debut novel CLASH OF EAGLES (The Last of the Mohicans meets HBO’s Rome!) — and the unique love story at its heart.
Author A.J. Walters joins us to talk about how real life inspired her older, definitely non-virginal, plus-sized heroine...
"My core story is a simple one: Love Conquers All. I still believe that’s essentially what I’m trying to convey, but I often use redemption themes in order to do it. I love flawed characters, those who are challenged by more than just forces beyond their control, because they are far more real to me. I don’t know anyone who has lived a perfect life; regret is something we all face, which is why characters that are pitted against themselves are often the most complex and interesting..."
"If I was writing in my own Memory Book, like the one that Claire keeps in THE DAY WE MET, I’d remember the first time I fell in love, which feels as if it were yesterday, although it’s more than thirty years ago now..."
Laura Trentham stops by today to talk about the perfect marriage of sports stories and romance, and her favorite films that have elements of both.
In my latest release, NEED ME, my characters first meet in college. Caroline knows exactly what her destiny involves—she’s focused on becoming a journalist. Roger, like me, hasn’t a clue about what he wants, but life has other plans for him...
I’ve been asked many times: how do you chose the setting of your stories? And why? I’ll be completely honest: I like to choose settings where I’ve actually been. So that means Texas! The reason is that I know what the cities look and feel like. Knowing where I am makes it easier to actually visualize the story taking place.
Although I try to be disciplined with my writing, the process that gets me from the first page to the last page is sometimes unorthodox. To the dismay of many I don’t necessarily plot in the traditional sense. Usually the characters take control and guide my hand, making me the conduit for the story they want to tell. But what is always consistent with everything I write is the music...
Every romance writer dreads hearing is that her books are fine and all, but they’re just not realistic. That they set up unfair expectations for love. That they’re setting women up for disappointment when they date a Mr. Darcy who turns out to be a Wickham, or a Jamie Fraser who turns out to be…not Jamie Fraser. (And really, are there any men who are Jamie Fraser? Diana Gabaldon, you’ve ruined my love life!)
Scandal here with a quick word about Tessa Bailey: I’ve been reading her books as long as Tessa Bailey has been publishing books. I love a good dirty-talking hero and I am of the opinion that Ms. Bailey writes dirty talkers better than most. Tessa Bailey never ceases to amaze me so I was not surprised when she dipped her toe in the anti-hero waters.
I’m going to tell you a secret (looks over my shoulder warily): I loathe small towns. I’m a big city girl, through and through. Give me sushi and the symphony and traffic. Even driving through a small town gives me hives. Why should you care? Oh, because my small-town romance ALL FOR YOU released this week.
Authors Terry Spear and Paige Tyler join us today to share how – and why — they combine the three elements of romance, paranormal, and suspense. Terry Spear: I love suspense, love mystery, and the paranormal. And a HEA — the happy ever after — is a must. But mostly, I like the conflict that lends itself to suspense stories, and even better if they’re romantic suspense, and even better if they have some kind of other world—either paranormal or like in my Highland historicals. It just gives the story more…meat. More to enjoy. At least for me, and since I’m writing them, they make it more fun for me. Now, the key is really staying true to three different elements: Romance, suspense, and the paranormal. This is because as the story develops, the… Continue
The hero in my book HIS SMALL-TOWN SWEETHEART is Sam Ward. He was in the previous two books of my Ward Brothers trilogy. In this book, Sam finds his match, but I wondered what it would be like for Sam to have gone on a date prior to his own story. So I went to eHarmony and found a post on 10 First Date Questions You Probably Haven’t Thought Of. Bear with me as this is my first and probably only character interview. (BTW I can’t guarantee much, Sam’s a hard nut to crack.)
One month from today, the movie we have all been waiting for hits theaters! In anticipation, we will countdown with Five weeks of Fifty, celebrating the phenomenon that is FIFTY SHADES OF GREY with weekly posts about how our love affair with the book began, what we’re most excited about with the movie, thoughts from writers on how it affected their careers, and more.
Growing up military, I always envied those people who lived in the same town all of their lives. I craved the continuity of knowing my neighbors and classmates from cradle to grave; or knowing every creak of the stairs and groan of the radiator in our home.
One of the many reasons I love romance is that I like happy endings. I always have. I remember, as a ten-year-old, being so upset by a Sweet Valley High book that ended with Elizabeth in a coma that I never picked up another Sweet Valley book again. (Extra funny because I found out many years later that that was just a lead-in to a story where Elizabeth awoke from the coma with Jessica's personality! But my library didn't own the follow-up.) Sometimes I'm so upset by an ending that I have to fix it...
My newest historical romance, SECRETS OF A SCANDALOUS HEIRESS, features a wily heroine pretending to be someone else: a mixed-race hero hunting his cousin’s blackmailer, and—of course!—a happily-ever-after once Joss and Augusta begin to help each other and reveal their true selves. I’m here to tell you a little about Joss Everett, the hero of SECRETS OF A SCANDALOUS HEIRESS. But in the spirit of a historical romance full of so many secrets and scandals, I’ll fudge the truth a little. Two of these statements about Joss are true, and one is a lie. See if you can pick it out!
I grew up on the South Carolina coast. Since I was a little girl, I’ve been fascinated by the fact that the beach is both the end of the earth, so to speak, and the beginning of the vast, deep ocean. You look down at your bare toes and see where these two opposites meet—how their liquid-solid boundary is constantly changing, never static. And then you look up and see the horizon, far away, its bare curve uniting earth and sky, suggesting endless possibilities for those who dream. It’s exciting. You feel the pull and the push inside you, the clamoring of your spirit to move, to grow…. Yet when you pull back from this scene—leave in your car and come back next time, or imagine it from a soaring gull’s viewpoint—the place where sea… Continue
They say you form your personality, likes and dislikes, and the rules you live by early in life. I think that’s true—even for what appeals when it comes to heroes.
I find magical realism to be the most romantic of all the genres. The idea that there is magic hidden in the mundane, that there are little miracles everywhere in life, is one that seduced me long ago. I love romance. I love fairy tales. I love stories that end in happily ever after. And I also believe that the greatest and grandest love affair we can have is with life itself. As a little girl I investigated every wardrobe looking for Narnia. I hoped to find a rabbit hole that led to Wonderland. I searched my garden for fairies and goblins and gnomes. Everything in life seemed magical and full of infinite possibilities. Children believe that everything is possible. Sadly, adults too often believe that nothing is possible. For me, magical stories remind us… Continue
"Thinking about writing for Romance at Random, I couldn’t help but think how random romance really is. I mean, did you end up with the person you thought you would? I most certainly didn’t."
Inspiration comes to writers in many forms. In the case of FOSTER JUSTICE, I returned to Texas (I was born in Austin) recently after living in the Los Angeles area for twelve years...
We’re pleased to share an extra scene from Jayne Fresina’s new release, Sinfully Ever After, the second novel in her Book Club Belles Society series. The following is an exclusive peek into a meeting of the Book Club Belles that does not appear in the book.
Gina Danna explores why Ancient Rome is the perfect setting for a sexy story.