What’s the Next Big Thing Blog Hop?
My friend and critique partner Susana Ellis tagged me. The idea is for me to answer ten questions about my latest project, then tag other authors to keep hop going (kind of a like a chain letter, lol). I haven’t tagged anybody yet, though, so if you’re looking for an excuse to tout your latest work-in-progress or new release let me know :-)
Ten Questions about…The Only Exception
Was The Only Exception always the title of this book, even when it was a work in progress?
No. In fact, it was submitted and was a finalist in a few contests last year under the title From You I Cannot Hide. Now it’s split into a prequel novella (tentatively titled All You Wanted) and the full length novel The Only Exception. Since it hasn’t been published, the title may yet change. Stay tuned!
Where did the idea come from for this book?
Gosh, that’s a hard thing to pin down. I wanted to write something different, and my stories always come from the characters, so I started there. The heroine, Kate, is a bluestocking spinster, but she isn’t a typical wallflower-type. Nor is she the outspoken academic type you sometimes see in Regencies. She hides herself—her soul—very well, even from those who love her (and from me!)…so well, in fact, that they don’t realize it unless they look very hard. The hero, John, Lord Wrexham, has a bit of a Batman complex (yes, as in the super hero). The loss of his father plunges his world into chaos, and he turns into something of a control freak trying to get things to make sense again. That, of course, can only last for so long before a person cracks. Those two issues form the basis for this story.
What genre does your book fall under?
This is a Regency romance through and through. The heat level in the novella is around blush/kisses, while the novel seems like it’s going to have a little more kick to it.
Which actors would you choose to play your characters in a movie rendition?
I couldn’t even begin to speculate! Once when I wasn’t feeling well, I spent several days watching movies and TV trying to cast my favorite historical figures (yes, I’m that much of a history nerd). I decided that Robert Downey Jr. (as Tony Stark in Iron Man) would make a wonderful real-life Richard III (not the Shakespearean one), but that was as far as I got. I have no idea who’d make a good Kate or John.
What is the one-sentence synopsis of your book?
She knows his secrets…he knows her heart.
Will your book be self-published or represented by an agency?
I haven’t finished it yet, so I don’t know. At this point I’m open to either.
How long did it take you to write the first draft of your manuscript?
I wasn’t teaching when I first started writing this story, and I made it about ¾ of the way through in a couple of months…then realized I needed to do a major overhaul. So officially, the first draft never got finished.
What other books would you compare this story to within your genre?
Style-wise, it’s similar to a Julia Quinn novel or a Mary Balogh story, I think. I’ve been immersed in these characters and this plot for so
long now, I’m not sure I can be objective enough to compare it to a published work. Here’s the latest version of the back-of-the-book blurb, so you tell me:
She knows his secrets…
Wealthy and powerful, the Earl of Wrexham commands the respect of the ton—but not the woman who knows his hidden vulnerabilities. He banished Kate from his life years ago, but her sudden return to Town threatens his reputation and everything he’s become. Will she ruin his carefully crafted image and his family’s good name? Will she destroy his chance to find a suitable bride? What is he willing to do to secure her silence…and his future?
He knows her heart…
Bluestocking Kate Sedgley fled to the country after her third disastrous Season, and hasn’t returned to Town since—until her uncle cuts her purse strings. With no talent or trade, Kate knows the only way to support herself is to marry. But who wants a disgraced spinster with no dowry and a frail, dependent mother? Lord Wrexham came to her rescue once. Can she convince him to do so again? How far will she go to ensure his help…and her security?
Who/what inspired you to write this book?
Honestly, my characters just spoke to me. And they got so loud and persistent that I knew I had to write the story…just to get it out of my head :-D
What else about your book might pique the reader’s interest?
If you like learning new things about the era, you’re in for a treat. I’m one of those writers who likes to use actual historical events whenever possible, so the festivities that the Prince Regent planned after Napoleon was sent to Elba play a part in John and Kate’s story. There are lots of quotes and historical references, as well. The emotion behind the story, though, is most often inspired by modern music. For example, Kate’s theme song through most of the book is “The Great Pretender” by The Platters. John’s through a few parts is “Waiting for the End” by Linkin Park.