First, don’t forget about Operation Auction! Bidding for my book video has been doing great, thanks to all who’ve helped spread the word. But I know we can raise even more money for Fatin and family.
Second, I’m going to be part of this uber-cool event at RT on April 6th, called Romance Live. Six Avon authors of historical romance are going to answer questions and chat with readers, and it will be streamed live on the Internet for everyone to see. (note to self: buy darker lipstick) I hope some of you will be able to join us online, or even in person – I hear there will be wine and cupcakes!
I’m very excited about this, and even more excited to post the ad because it has my beautiful new cover for A Night to Surrender! The one I haven’t been cleared yet to post on this site! But there it is (the pretty purple one), so get out your magnifying glasses and enjoy.
I want to draw everyone’s attention to a huge Ebay auction going on right now, to benefit a special cause. From the Operation Auction website:
Fatin has been an integral part of the romance community for years – she owns and runs the RR@H Novel Thoughts and Book Talk blog, is an administrator of the WriteMinded loop, an author assistant and a tireless advocate for romance novels. She is also a friend to many in this community.
On Tuesday, March 8th, she lost her husband in a senseless act of violence, leaving her alone with four children. You can read more about the tragedy here: http://www.wral.com/news/local/story/9233067/
I can’t even begin to imagine the pain and fear that Fatin and her children must be going through, in the wake of this tragedy. Authors, bloggers, editors, agents, and others have donated a myriad of items to raise money to help the family. You can view the items and bid here. There are signed books, gift baskets, critiques, name-a-character packages, lunches with authors, and much more.
The winning bidder will receive a customized book video shot on location in the Darelings’ bedroom.
Tessa will provide all props, materials, and (admittedly amateur) production. You provide cover art, a manuscript or synopsis for reference, and creative direction, if you wish. If desired, the video will include stock music, which the winning bidder is welcome to help choose. Tessa will upload the finished, approved video to YouTube, so it can be easily embedded on your blog or website, and linked/shared via social media. On request, she’ll also send a copy of the file for you to do with as you please. From project start date, please allow a month for turnaround time.
I’m going to do my darnedest to make the winning bidder a unique and fun video. Making the prize much more valuable, severalA TON of bloggers have committed to posting the video – so the winning bidder will have guaranteed distribution at these sites and possibly more:
A huge thank you to all of those bloggers! And of course, I will post it everywhere I can, too.
Bidding ends at midnight Wednesday (March 30th), so don’t delay! And once again, if a book video’s not your thing – there are dozens and dozens of other great items to bid on. Please bid and help out a family in need.
I got “the call” this morning that Twice Tempted by a Rogue is a finalist in the 2011 RITAs, in the Best Regency Historical category! The RITA awards are presented by the Romance Writers of America each year, at our annual conference.
I am so thrilled and honored, not least because I’m in the most amazingly talented company. Just look at this list of finalists:
His Christmas Pleasure by Cathy Maxwell (Avon Books; Lucia Macro, editor) The Mischief of the Mistletoe by Lauren Willig (Dutton; Erika Imranyi, editor) Nine Rules to Break When Romancing a Rake by Sarah MacLean (Avon Books; Carrie Feron, editor) Provocative in Pearls by Madeline Hunter (Jove; Wendy McCurdy, editor) To Surrender to a Rogue by Cara Elliott (Forever; Frances Jalet-Miller, editor) Twice Tempted by a Rogue by Tessa Dare (Ballantine Books; Kate Collins, editor) When Harry Met Molly by Kieran Kramer (St. Martin’s Press; Jennifer Enderlin, editor) The Wicked Wyckerly by Patricia Rice (NAL/Signet; Ellen Edwards, editor)
Let me preface this with an apology. I’m about to get all deep-thoughty about digital book pricing and so forth. I feel sort of bad blogging about this when a) I blog so infrequently nowadays and b) most of the people who regularly check this blog are, I suspect, not doing so because they want my unsolicited opinions on this topic. Most would probably much rather hear about the next book, right?
So I’m happy to say firstly–I have posted a bit of info about the new series and two–count them, two!–dueling excerpts from A Night to Surrenderhere. Anyone not interested in digital book pricing and libraries and so forth, please do follow that link and never mind what is beneath the fold.
If you are interested, read on… (but don’t say I didn’t warn you!)
I’ve finished most of my revisions on A Night to Surrender–just a few little things to wrap up, hooray! (And I do think that title’s going to stick.) It also looks like the release date will be August 30, 2011. I really hope I have a cover to show you soon! Thank you so much to everyone who left “anxiously awaiting” comments on my previous post. They really mean a lot to me.
Next week, I hope to post a little more about the new series.
In the meantime, I’m moving house on Facebook! I was getting too close to the limit for Friends, so I’ve opened a new Fan page that will eventually house all the updates, giveaways, and such. If you’ve been a Friend on my profile page (or even if you haven’t), I’d love it if you’d come “Like” my new page now. To kick things off, I’ve uploaded a new photo album of some pictures from my trip to England that inspired locations in the new series. You can view it here. And all next week, I’ll be giving away an autographed book every day, so don’t miss out!
I’ve updated my contest page with a new giveaway – and I’m making up for lost time by giving away five hot new historical romances in one bundle!
I recently learned rights to my first trilogy (Goddess of the Hunt, et al) were sold for French translations. C’est magnifique! Finally, a translation I might be able to read…just a little. My high-school French is quite rusty.
And I’m very excited to be a guest of the Friends of Huntington Beach Library for their Romance Authors’ Tea on February 10. Romance and tea and libraries – three of my favorite things! Other authors on the panel will be Patricia Wynn and Carol Snow.
Hope all is well with you and yours, and you are not buried under too much snow, or nursing some horrid winter cold. Cheers!
Quite a few of you lovely, lovely people have asked about the next book, and now that the book is actually written 8) I feel I can post a few tidbits of information. I should say that everything in this post is subject to change, as it’s not yet set in stone. Once I have an official cover, blurb, and release date I will definitely create a proper page for the book in my Bookshelf section. For the meantime, here’s what I can tell you.
The book will be almost probably certainly titled A Night to Surrender. It will most likely be released in early Fall of 2011, like August/September-ish. And it will most definitely have a gorgeous cover, if the preliminary artwork is any indication. I can’t share it yet. Believe me, I want to.
Oh, I am weak. Maybe I can give you a just a teensy, tiny snippet?
The setting for this book (and the entire series) was partly inspired by the trip I took to England this past August. I spent most of my time on the coast of Sussex–Brighton, Hastings, Rye. The hero of the book, Victor Bramwell, is a war hero. He’s been granted a revived medieval earldom, which includes a very un-revived medieval castle. Rycliff Castle, as it exists in the book, was loosely cobbled together from several sites I visited. One of them was Hastings Castle, pictured here.
*siiiiigh* some more. So lovely.
To go along with that, here’s a teensy, tiny snippet from the book (again, all subject to change! Not edited yet), where the heroine, Susanna Finch, is showing the newly arrived Bram to what is now his castle.
Once they crested the sandstone ridge, Susanna pulled to a stop. “Well,” she said between deep inhalations, “there it is, my lord. Rycliff Castle.”
The castle ruins sat perched at the tip of an outcropping, an arrowhead of green heath jutting over the sea. Four stone turrets, a few standing arches…here and there, a bit of wall. This was all that remained. In the background spread the English Channel, now turning a lovely shade of periwinkle in the dimming afternoon.
Silence reigned for a long minute as the men took in the scene. Susanna kept quiet too, as she tried to see the ancient ruined fortress through fresh eyes. As a young girl, she’d be taken with the romance of it. When viewing the castle as a picturesque ruin, the absent walls and ceilings were the best features. The missing parts were invitations to dream; they inspired the imagination. When looking upon this as a prospective residence, however, she could only imagine the missing parts would inspire grave misgivings. Or perhaps hives.
So there are a few tidbits. More snippets (and lengthier excerpts, and full size covers, and complete blurbs) to come…!
Today, I received a very exciting package in the mail – copies of the German translation of Goddess of the Hunt! It prompted me to do some web searching to see if any of the other translations have hit the market while I wasn’t looking. And look, they have! Not only in German, but in Japanese, Russian, and Slovak!
See the pretty covers!
I love the clinchy goodness of the German cover art, and the tender romance of the Russian one. I’m very impressed by the way the Slovak publisher referenced the design of the original US cover. Though I have to admit, that lovely, sweet girl on the Japanese version (the title of which, Google Translate informs me, is something like “Earl and a Fake Kiss”) strikes me as rather innocent-looking to be representing Lucy.
I went to England!
My eldest started first grade! *sob* Goddess of the Hunt came out in Russian! Booklist mentioned me as one of the “new stars of historical romance” – woot! (If you’re looking for new historical authors, be sure to check out that list.)
And I’ve received so much lovely reader mail. I’ve noticed a few common questions cropping up, so I thought I’d go ahead and post answers here for anyone else who might be wondering.
Will Claudia get her own book?
I love this question. I love that so many readers have cared about her, asked about her, and want to see her happy in life and love. She was definitely a character who came alive for me. I hope I do get to write her story someday, but it won’t be happening right away. For one thing, she is still pretty much a teenager in my mind. I need some time to think about the kind of woman she’ll become, and how her life experiences will have shaped her. Second, right now I’m busy with other projects. Which brings me to the other question I’ve been fielding a lot lately…
What are you working on next?
I’m thrilled to report that I’m working on the first book in a brand new Regency historical series. This one has an alpha hero and an alpha heroine mixing it up in a fun, flirty battle-of-the-sexes. Regency-style, of course! Because I caught up to myself with that back-to-back schedule, this next book won’t be out until we’re well into 2011. Once I have a release date (not to mention a title and cover!), I’ll be sure to share them with you! Watch this space for more details.
This weekend, I’ll be in Sacramento, speaking at the Sacramento Valley Rose chapter of RWA. Really looking forward to it! Hope you all have a great weekend, too.
So, I did not win the Regency Historical RITA on Saturday night – that honor (most deservedly) went to Julia Quinn for What Happens in London. I was so elated to see her get her third RITA and instant induction into RWA’s Hall of Fame, I honestly didn’t feel the least bit disappointed. What I felt was hungry, and, in the absence of any lingering nerves, finally able to enjoy my dessert.
The conference was wonderful, on the whole. Both of my panels seemed to go okay (even if mostly on the strength the other panelists!), and the book signings were amazing experiences. Last year, I was mostly signing books for my friends. This year, I had actual readers! Ones I didn’t know! Seriously, that was beyond thrilling.
Of course, there were parties. The swanky Avon party at Epcot’s Living Seas pavilion was one highlight, as was the rockin’ party we held in our suite. I had fun hanging out with old friends and meeting new ones, had productive meetings with my agent and editor. Good times, good times.
Oh, and Nora Roberts gave an unforgettable keynote address. Inspiring, hilarious, and, in several places, delightfully profane.
So that was conference. Now let’s get to the important part: Harry Potter!
As a long overdue birthday gift, Carey Baldwin and I took our beloved friend and CP, Courtney Milan, to the brand spankin’ new “Wizarding World of Harry Potter” at Universal Studios Islands of Adventure. We’d been hearing all week that the lines and wait times were insane, so we printed out tickets the night before and woke up at the cracklimp, humid flap of dawn to get in line. Which worked beautifully, because we were among the first to get into the park. Sara Lindsey also happened to visit the park that day with her mother and sister, so the more/merrier quotient only increased.
The centerpiece of the HP area is Forbidden Journey ride, which is housed in Hogwarts. I mean, really. They built Hogwarts and put the ride inside! Just waiting in line was awesome. We passed through Dumbledore’s office, saw the mirror of Erised and pensieve, walked through Mrs. Sprout’s greenhouse and the gallery of talking portraits, and more. SO cool. (I mean, it’s cool to a Harry Potter geek like me. But even Carey, who isn’t into HP so much, thought it was pretty neat.)
The ride itself…eh. I get motion sick *really* easily, and the ride used a lot of those surround screens, where the combined visuals and ride motion are supposed to make you feel like you’re flying on a broomstick with Harry and friends. Yeah, I couldn’t handle those parts. Had to close my eyes. But I gleefully opened them for the live-action spiders and dementors and Whomping Willow.
Then it was on to Hogsmeade, where we watched a wand fitting at Ollivander’s, poked around the Owl Post, Honeydukes and Zonko’s, and ate at Three Broomsticks. Courtney and Carey rode a fiendish-looking Dragon Challenge roller coaster while I watched the Frog Chorus and enjoyed some anti-nausea medication.
I would say this was the best part of the Harry Potter theme park experience: simply soaking up the atmosphere of that beloved fictional world. But really, the best best part was spending a few more hours with good friends. Here are the three of us, enjoying a frosty butterbeer. (Which tasted to me sort of like old-school Tab, topped with sweet whipped cream. Yum!)
Hooray! Three Nights with a Scoundrel, the final installment in the Stud Club trilogy, is in stores today! I wish I could be online more, but I’m traveling today from California to Florida for the RWA conference, so I’ll be in transit for most of the day. But I want to say thank you to everyone who has been reading this trilogy and looking forward to Julian and Lily’s story–I hope you enjoy it!
If you want to read an early review, check out this one at The Romance Dish. Reviewer PJ was a Julian skeptic, and she’s now one of his biggest fans.
I’ll be tweeting and updating Facebook from conference, so if you follow me on either of those social networks, look out for news and pics!