SO – WHAT AM I WORKING ON?

Many thanks to Cathy Mansell for inviting me to be a follow-on guest on this blog tour. If you’d like to find out more about Cathy and her work, you’ll do so on

http://cathymansell.com

SO – WHAT AM I WORKING ON?

I’m working on my third book for Choc Lit Lite. My first two, EVIE UNDERCOVER and THE ART OF DECEPTION, are set in modern Umbria. For A WESTERN HEART, however, I’ve returned to the American West of A BARGAIN STRUCK, setting the story in Wyoming, 1880.

Will Hyde and Rose McKinley, the older son and the older daughter of successful neighbouring ranches, have grown up together like brother and sister, knowing that one day they’ll marry and thereby unite their two ranches. Their families and friends know this, too, and are now wondering aloud with increasing frequency why their engagement hasn’t yet been announced.

Rose, too, has started to wonder why. Will loves her and she loves him, so nothing can stop them marrying. Can it?

HOW DOES MY WORK DIFFER FROM OTHERS IN THIS GENRE?

Everyone writes with a voice, and no two voices are the same. My voice and style are a part of me and the way I express myself, just as the subjects I choose reflect my interests. I love strong stories, and I believe in telling the historical truth. My novels, therefore, tell page-turning stories – I hope – that grow from an authentic historical background.

WHY DO I WRITE WHAT I DO?

Because I love a good story, I’ve always been fascinated by history, which is the story of the past. I’m also extremely interested in the way that other cultures live. My novels are born out of these interests.

I have no interest, however, in writing about true people. I prefer to write a fictional story that owes something to a true event, or events, and to set the whole against an authentic background.

HOW DOES MY WRITING PROCESS WORK?

I write every minute that I can.Real life (too) frequently intervenes.There’s nothing I like more than having a whole day ahead of me in which to write.Just me and the laptop.I might research; I might write; I might develop the plan of my story – I always firm up my plan when I’m about a third of the way through the novel.

Well, that’s me.  Following me in this blog tour are Christina Courtenay and Alison Morton.

Christina at an RNA party

CHRISTINA COURTENAYwrites historical romance, time slip and YA contemporary romance, all published by independent publisher Choc Lit.  She is half Swedish and was brought up in Sweden. In her teens, she moved to Japan where she had the opportunity to travel extensively in the Far East.  Christina is the current chairman of the RNA and her third novel Highland Storms won the RoNA for Best Historical Romantic Novel of the year award in 2012.  Her latest novel The Secret Kiss of Darkness is published next week.

Christina’s website is http://www.christinacourtenay.com

Alison at the RNA Conference, 2013

ALISON MORTONwrites Roman themed alternate history thrillers. She holds a bachelor’s degree in French, German and Economics, a masters’ in history and lives in France with her husband.

A ‘Roman nut’ since age 11, she has visited sites throughout Europe including the alma mater, Rome. But it was the mosaics at Ampurias (Spain) that started her wondering what a modern Roman society would be like if run by women…

INCEPTIO was shortlisted for the 2013 International Rubery Book Award and awarded a B.R.A.G. MedallionTM in September 2013. The next in the series, PERFIDITAS, was published October 2013.  Alison is working on the third book SUCCESSIO.

Connect with Alison on her blog  http://alison-morton.com/blog/

Facebook  https://www.facebook.com/AlisonMortonAuthor

Twitter https://twitter.com/alison_morton

  • New book sounds great, Liz. I miss westerns on tv, part of my childhood. There are some things which should never change, so thanks for bringing them back into my life.

    Liv x

    • Liz:

      Me, too, Liv. I’ve always loved westerns. I think it’s a really romantic genre, and even though I know the truth behind the mythology, it doesn’t spoil them for me.

  • Neat, succinct post, Liz. Your stories may be about fictional characters, but I know how much effort you put into your research – and it shows!

    • Liz:

      Many thanks for your comment, Alison. I love the research that comes before starting the book. For example, there’s a real thrill in reading the words of people who lived in the 1880s – perhaps in their letters; perhaps in their newspapers. The old Wyoming newspapers can all be accessed online. Through their words, you gain a far greater understanding of their lives than (almost) any textbook could give you.

  • Another Wyoming story! How wonderful, Liz. I can’t wait!

    I too, love (and miss) the old TV Westerns. My father was a huge fan of them, and from the age of about three, I grew up watching them all with him. I’m sure it’s what started my own passionate love affair with the American South-West deserts and canyons.

    I loved A Bargain Struck, you made everything so real, I was almost sad to finish the book! I am really looking forward to your new book!

    xxx

    • Liz:

      Thank you for those lovely comments about A Bargain Struck, Berni. I do hope you’ll enjoy A Western Heart, too. It was fun writing it. At only a little more than 30,000 words, it’s slightly different in tone from ABS. I used two historical facts that I knew and asked What if?

  • Ooh, another Western, Liz. I can’t wait, having enjoyed A Bargain Stuck so much. I wonder how much I’ll recognise, as in characters. Your setting in ABS was just fantastic. And the characters, too.

    Looking forward to it!

    Beverley

    • Liz:

      Thank you very much for those lovely comments, Beverley.

      I’ve set my novella in Wyoming, 1880, and the two ranches concerned are comfortably off. I didn’t want to risk repeating myself. It’s such a fascinating era that I wanted to focus on another part of it. Being a novella, it’s slightly lighter in tone than ABS, though. Despite that, it’s historically accurate.

  • A great post Liz. And for me great news about Western Heart, because I absolutely loved ‘A Bargain Struck’. I think I must take after my granny, who used to read three Westerns a week. However, she used to say she couldn’t do with that ‘love stuff’ – so that bit’s not like me then!

    • Liz:

      Thank you very much, Margaret. I loved writing A Western Heart, and I very much hope that everyone enjoys reading it.

  • I’m sure it’ll be another great story, Liz!

  • I look forward to reading A Western Heart Liz. Good luck with finishing it!

    • Liz:

      Many thanks, Anita. It was great fun to write. I really love that period- both writing novels set in it and reading those set by others in the same period.

  • Your writing process made me smile. I, too, like nothing more than a whole day of writing – but it happens far too rarely! I’m looking forward to a Western Heart – its sounds intriguing 🙂

    • Liz:

      Thank you for commenting, Kathryn. The sound of my husband closing the door behind him as he goes out for the day, leaving me behind with my laptop, is one of my favourite sounds in the world. 🙂

  • Christina Courtenay:

    Love the sound of your new Western story – looking forward to reading that! And thanks for passing the baton to me 🙂

  • Melanie Brown:

    Hi Liz. Great blog. I love stories that whisk you away. Looking forward to heading to the West in your next one. Mel x

    • Liz:

      I love that period, Mel. I intend to indulge myself and set one more full-length novel in the American West, and then I shall have to (very reluctantly) tear myself away.

  • Well done Liz. This is a lovely post and I enjoyed reading it.
    Another Western sounds wonderful and I’m sure it will be just as successful.

    Good luck with getting on with the writing.

    • Liz:

      Many thanks for that lovely comment, Cathy. It’s a period I find absolutely fascinating, so it’s a joy to immerse myself in it again.

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