So I’m [slowly] working my way through this historical romance at the insistence of my friend Laura. I’m not having any luck with my YA fantasy that’s being sent around to agents and considering I’ve been working on that project in some fashion for the last 7 or so years while working on nothing else except maybe fanfiction it may have been time for a change. So when she was like, ‘just try it’ I caved fairly easily (I guess not so easily since I hadn’t been distracted by a Shiny New Idea in the better part of a decade) and figured why not? What could it hurt?
I did spend some time last summer doing research for this book but I’m just now starting to write something other than an outline. And I have to say . . . it fits. While it’s hard for me to stay away from the darkest aspects of the story (because it does have vampires; I couldn’t just write a straight historical romance, that’s REALLY not me, I don’t even really like reading those books) the tone is just snapping into place with my regular writing jive to such an extent that it’s actually kind of scary.
I blame Brooklyn Ann for this. Laura was the one who found her Scandals with Bite books first and I just loved them so. Like I said, I don’t normally read historical romance because it really doesn’t interest me but add in vampires and my ears perk up. And these books are just perfection. I love them.
So when I was sitting around commiserating with Laura about what’s being published and how I’m having a hard time getting my work into anyone’s hands it was decided that I needed more sex in my writing. And the plot to write this historical romance was born, thanks in part to Brooklyn Ann’s work because I don’t think either of us would have been able to concoct this creature that’s being brought into this world if it weren’t for her books. So we created an outline. Since Laura’s far better read in these types of books than I am she came up with our basic premise and the major plot points we need to hit. Now it’s my job to bring it all to life.
I still have a pile of research to do because the bulk of what I researched last year centered around pirates and British naval warfare. The daintier stuff like clothing, society, and speech I have nothing for yet so I have A LOT of asterisks and note indications in my writing because I’m just winging some of this right now. I really don’t know the specifics of a wedding dress from the early 18th century so I’m going to have to come back to that in editing. Or time-specific colloquialisms or British titles or anything like that. I got the rough and tumble stuff down (don’t actually need to do any research on vampires, I’ve been a fanger since I was 11). The floofy stuff is still an unknown to me.
And this book is going to have a PROLOGUE. It’s a foreign concept to me; I don’t usually write them because they’re largely unnecessary but this book practically begged me for it. Okay, I said. You shall have one. It’s all I have actually written down and when I sent it to Laura I’m pretty sure I could hear her squealing from here (she’s in Mississippi, that’s a hell of a squeal). Coming from someone who’s big into the genre that makes me rather proud (and no, she’s a REAL friend and would actually tell me if it’s shit).
But it’s clicking in a way that, if I’m being honest with myself, hasn’t happened before. Sure, I clicked with my YA fantasy and I truly do love the book I wrote but this is an eye-opening click. Something new and fresh and because it’s so far outside my writing (and reading) comfort zone that I think the click comes as even more of a surprise. It’s kind of scary.