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Fighting For Love

Burlesque on Bourbon Carlos
Burlesque on Bourbon

A chance encounter in a voodoo shop in New Orleans has Bridgette breathless when she meets a mystery man who charms her like no other.
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Carlos

After being in self-exile for years, famous artist Carlos Fernandez emerges to a new life and a new love.
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The Summer We Skipped Woodstock A Secret Gift
The Summer We Skipped Woodstock

The summer of 1969 was filled with all sorts of marvels: music, riots, unbelievable sorrow, and incredible acts of bravery, the biggest one being Leon taking a chance on love.
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A Secret Gift

When a mysterious benefactor offers Halley the opportunity of a lifetime, she grabs it with both hands hoping the sexy contractor who’s driving her crazy is the best part of living out her dreams.
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Writer's World

Tips & Answers to Qs

A NOD TO THE MASTERS OF THEIR CRAFT ON WRITING

Kazuo Ishiguro

The first draft of the Man Booker Prize for Fiction, Remains of the Day,

was written in a four-week sprint. Ishiguro described the process that he and

his wife created to help him complete the first effort:

“So Lorna and I came up with a plan. I would, for a four-week period, ruthlessly clear my diary and go on what we somewhat mysteriously called a “Crash.” During the Crash, I would do nothing but write from 9am to 10.30pm, Monday through Saturday. I’d get one hour off for lunch and two for dinner. I’d not see, let alone answer, any mail, and would not go near the phone. No one would come to the house. Lorna, despite her own busy schedule, would for this period do my share of the cooking and housework. In this way, so we hoped, I’d not only complete more work quantitatively, but reach a mental state in which my fictional world was more real to me than the actual one.”

Here’s the origin story The Remains of the Day:

“It started with a joke that my wife made. There was a journalist coming to interview me

for my first novel. And my wife said, Wouldn’t it be funny if this person came in to ask

you these serious, solemn questions about your novel and you pretended that

you were my butler? We thought this was a very amusing idea. From then on

I became obsessed with the butler as a metaphor.” (Paris review)

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From the Editor's Desk

Editor's Desk

LET’S FIGHT

True story (condensed): At a seminar where authors were sharing how they started their stories, one author said, “My book starts with the H/H in bed, and everything is lovey-dovey.” *Buzzer noise* After making the buzzer noise, the presenter said, “They should be fighting. Really tearing into each other.” The author looked startled. Presenter: “Always best to have the characters do the unexpected, especially when being in bed all lovey-dovey seems so romantic. Everyone writes that. Stand out. Shake things up.” The next day, the author approached the presenter in the breakfast buffet line and said, “Thank you. You really made me think. I was up all night rewriting.”

Even in Regency stories, you can write an insurrection of emotions with a few well-chosen savageries.

When characters fight, they’re not guarded. Or, if they are, having them behave aberrantly, or saying things they’d never say, expresses a world of feelings. Frequently, when people fight they say the things they’ve been holding on to, or things they can’t believe they revealed. Sometimes, they say things they can’t take back, and what they’ve said may be the last straw.

No matter how you craft the argument(s) – the fierier the character, the more likely they’ll fight often – your job is to throw as many emotions out there as you can. Create a maelstrom so mighty the characters and the readers feel as if they’re drowning in feeling.

People who love each other fight for their love. People who don’t know they love each other fight to find that love. People who have stopped loving each other fight over the loss and assign blame. In the spectrum of emotion, there’s ten thousand shades of anger, bitterness, regret, yearning, frustration, hope, and desire. Don’t be afraid to mine those feelings. Even characters – especially characters who are invested in maintaining their cool, lose it. When they do, it’s a wonderful chapter to read. We’ve been waiting for the tipping point, knowing all along there’d be that one thing that pushes the character over the edge. How the other MC reacts is equally juicy.

Angry sex, make-up sex, goodbye sex...that’s a lot of veins in need of tapping.

Readers want to cry ugly over your characters. Readers want to get pissed-off at a character’s stupidity and willful blindness. Readers want to come away from your books feeling dizzy from the rollercoaster of emotions they’ve had to endure to get to the HEA you made them wait for until the last few pages of the last chapter.

*Smack*

Ah, c’mon. That was playful.