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What to Read

I have been absent, and my apologies. I am deep into writing right now and settling down to write more just isn’t on the agenda right now. But I took the weekend off to go to my aunt’s memorial service in Idaho, so I feel ready to type again and thought I would put something, anything up here quick before the glow wore off.

MBO Regency Romance coverI blogged last time about looking for something to read, and not long after that, lo and behold, you would never believe what came in the mail. Yes, something cool to read. Finished copies of The Mammoth Book of Regency Romance. Cool, huh? If you have never read one of these Mammoth volumes, they are a collection of short, short stories by authors in a specific genre, such as Regency romances.

And yes, I have a story inside. Yes, a story for this summer when you thought you would have to wait until the end of September. My little summer time gift to you.

When I was invited to do this, I already had a story in mind that I wanted to write for an anthology–a little twist on a familiar fairy tale, which you will find inside as, Cynders and Ashe. My version of Cinderella is a little more, shall we say, romantic and risque, and she leaves behind more than her shoe. Actually, she leaves her wings. You thought I was going to say something else, didn’t you? Mind. Out. Of. The. Gutter. Besides, I only had 50 pages.

But let me say that telling a romance in 30-50 pages is challenging–but in a fun way. What helped was the simple fact that I’d had over a year to plan the story. During that time, I’d been putting ideas, tidbits and thoughts for the story in a file. So when it came time to write, I pulled out all those little scribbled bits of inspiration, shuffled them around on a storyboard, came up with all the characters’s names/descriptions/motivations beforehand (something I never do) and had everything all mapped out and pinned up around my desk before I sat down to write a single line.

When I did, the story flew out and I wrote it in this creative burst of energy. I didn’t even write the scenes in order, which is another thing I never do. Sometimes just getting out of the usual can bring new energy to the process. And I hope you like the results.

Now for the delicious part of this volume: there are stories from some of my favorite authors inside. Loads of them. Candice Hern, Anna Campbell, Barbara Metzger and Lorraine Heath, just to name a few. As I’ve been dipping my toes between the pages, so to say, it turns out that these Mammoth books are a great way to find new authors or if you have just a little bit of time and really need a story, there is one inside just for you.

The Mammoth Book of Regency Romance publishes in the UK on June 24th, and in the US and Canada on July 27th. If you cannot wait until July, I will give you a little hint: Order it from Amazon.co.uk. Just saying.

Have you ever read a Mammoth volume? What did you like about it?

2 comments to “What to Read”

  1. Tracy M.
    June 7th, 2010 at 2:39 pm · Link

    Hi Elizabeth! I have never read a “Mammoth” book before but I am so glad that you posted the information so that I can pick myself up a copy. Maybe this book will tide me over until your new book comes out in September. I hope you have a wonderful summer!

  2. Julianne MacLean
    June 7th, 2010 at 3:14 pm · Link

    Hi Elizabeth – I must try to get my hands on this volume. I am writing a story for the Mammoth Scottish anthology which comes out next year, and it’s due July 1. I’ve never written a short story before, so I hope it goes as smoothly as yours did. I finally have a plot figured out (though it feels strange calling it a “plot” when it’s so short. I hope I don’t try to turn it in to a 400 page novel.) Wish me luck. I still feel totally out of my element, and I keep procrastinating. I was supposed to start writing it today, but I fiddled with my pencil and stared at the wall.

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