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Inspiration, Favorites, Critics and What's Next

Today’s Facebook questions come from Adelaide Hsu, who asked the following:

What inspires you?

Everything and anything. I am constantly amazed at what offers inspiration. The street names on a freeway sign. A particular reading at mass. A photo in a magazine. An overheard conversation in Starbucks. The characters themselves. I’ve always been the sort of person who can’t stop with one question–I tend to take that kernel of inspiration and start pondering a thousand and one questions about it until a more fully formed story grows around it. Sometimes that turns into a book and other times, the idea gets filed away.

Of all the books you’ve written–which one is your favorite–or if they all are which one is closest to your heart?

Over the years I’ve had several favorites, Stealing the Bride, Something About Emmaline and His Mistress by Morning, which have each in turn stood out as sentimental favorites for a variety of reasons. Stealing the Bride because I find the hero, Temple, infinitely fascinating. I’ve always had a big-o crush on him. I adore Emmaline because I love Emmaline’s audacity. Nothing stops her and that wily determination is admirable and something I wish I had more of. And I loved the complexity of writing His Mistress by Morning–which most people read and don’t realize that the first two thirds of the book are written in one point of view, which isn’t typical of a romance and not easily done–but was a tremendously fun challenge to write. That and I just love the poignancy of that romance.

Who (aside from yourself) is your greatest critic?

You all! Believe me, the reviews on blogs and over on Amazon.com are probably harsher than anything I could muster up. But as a writer you have to realize that you are not going to please everyone with every story. That is just a given. So what you have to do when you read reviews or criticism is look for points that overlap and use that as a starting point to strengthen and improve your writing.

One of my favorite covers. The art hangs in my office.

After you’ve written and published a book do you ever wish there was something you could change about it?

If there is anything I ever want to change, it is usually the cover. But I have little say in those, so I’ve learned to live them with as best I can.

What are you working on next and when can we buy it?

I’ve started a new series, The Kempton Brides, about a village where the ladies are cursed not to marry and there hasn’t been a bride from the village in several hundred years. So my trio of heroines unwittingly fall in love and start breaking the curse. The first book, Along Came a Duke, will come out June 2012. In the meantime, I am going to be e-pubbing the short story I did for the Mammoth Anthology, my Brazen books, and Avon has asked me to do a short story about Kempton, so I have lots of irons in the fire.

3 comments to “Inspiration, Favorites, Critics and What's Next”

  1. Karen H in NC
    August 1st, 2011 at 6:55 am · Link

    First off, thanks for the tidbit about the WIP. I’m always on the look-out for what’s coming down the pike from my favorite authors.

    Secondly, I just started reading ‘Something About Emmaline’ and I’m loving every word of it. I’m about 2/3 of the way done and I can’t wait to see how everything works out. I know it will be with the panache Emmaline deserves!

    And finally, a question about What I refer to as ‘The Marlowe Wish’ series. I have 2 books ‘His Mistress by Morning’ and ‘Tempted by the Night’. I haven’t read either book yet, but will there be anymore books in that series? Somehow I got the idea there would be 5 but I could have gotten some of the Bachelor Chronicles mixed up in that. I guess because the pub dates of these 2 where mixed in with the Bachelors. Ahh well, senior moments abound at my house….sigh…

    • Elizabeth
      August 5th, 2011 at 11:42 am · Link

      I truly hope to finish the Marlowe series! I love those books.

  2. infinitieh
    August 1st, 2011 at 10:17 pm · Link

    Ah, “Tempted by the Night”… I really enjoyed the book and Nathan Kamp was pretty mysterious and hot on the cover.

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