UTC: How do you ensure that your books continue to be historically accurate?
When I wrote these books a decade ago, I did extensive research. For instance, One Wicked Night, my Regency historical, was greatly influenced by an expert in the period. I also read a great number of books about everything from clothing to money to one of the pillars of the book's backstory, the hero's past divorce. With Strictly Seduction, I read a great deal about the beginnings of railroads in England. I’ve kept all of these books I’ve collected in both rare bookshops and in the UK and double check them as needed before re-releasing a title.
UTC: What would you say is the easiest part of writing historical romance? The most difficult?
One of the most difficult aspects of writing a historical, for me, was balancing dialogue appropriate for the period while keeping in mind a modern reader's sensibilities. Some colloquialisms and turns of speech aren’t always things today’s reader understands. It’s also challenging to think about every aspect of a character’s life in a historical perspective. More contemporary ways of looking at life or problems will sometimes creep in, and you have to weigh how a person of that era would truly view a situation versus what your reader now will be able to relate to. The easiest part is just the pure love of history, conveying the sweeping, swirling drama of a budding relationship in the midst of historical happenings.
UTC: What are some of your favorite historical romance books?
I have some favorite titles by Lisa Kleypas, Sandra Brown, Elizabeth Lowell, Laura London, Robin Schone, and Jennifer Haymore. Some are very old titles, but they are comfort reads that resonate with me today.
UTC: What can you tell us about Strictly Seduction?
Here’s the official blurb:
PURELY PASSIONUTC: Would you say you prefer a rake or virgin hero?
As an innocent girl, Madeline Sedgewick learned that nothing comes without a price—even desire. Five years later, now widowed and deeply in debt, she’s certain that the stranger who bought her last husband’s notes of credit will demand swift, steep repayment. But she never imagines her creditor will be Brock Taylor, her baseborn former stable-hand turned newly wealthy entrepreneur—the man who stole her virginity and her heart. She’s even more stunned when he says that he’ll forgive her debts only if she becomes his wife.
Brock’s memories of their parting are no less bitter than Maddie’s, and his plans for their future are hardly a rekindling of their blissful first love. But seeing Maddie again—just as spirited, strong, and beautiful as ever—reawakens a desire he thought long dead. When she refuses his proposal, they strike a dangerous wager, with Brock’s self-made fortune and Maddie’s treasured independence at stake. It’s a wager only one of them can win—as long as they resist the other’s passionate seduction . . . and falling in love again.
There were a lot of elements to this book that I thoroughly enjoyed writing. A sensual wager. A self-made man. A single mother desperate to give her child the best. As I edited this book for re-release, I remembered why I loved writing this book so much.
Definitely a rake. I’m a big fan of the bad boy. I like the idea that he comes to the heroine, confident and prepared to sweep her off her feet and steal her virtue or her heart, whichever applies, but finds that for all his experience in the ways of the world, he is still felled by a woman who’s far less worldly, but sweeps him away with her pure heart.
And now, we have an exclusive for you! An excerpt from Strictly Seduction! 18+ Warning! ;)