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Monday, August 26, 2013

INSPIRED BY THE PAST: TIME TRAVEL HISTORICALS


Hi! I'm new to Sweet 'n Sexy Divas. I'm a former teacher who has taken up romance writing as a second career. I read all sub-genres and heat levels, but my favorite is historical, and I'm currently writing sweet Regencies. My first short story, Treasuring Theresa, was released in January by Ellora's Cave in their Blush Cotillion line, and my Christmas novella, A Twelfth Night Tale, will appear in the Cotillion Christmas line later this year.

My friend Selene Grace Silver and I are in the initial stages of planning a set of time travel historical romances for Valentine's Day. She's self-published before and I haven't, but am eager to dip my toe in the water after hearing all the hoopla about it at the recent RWA conference in Atlanta.

I've also never written in tandem with someone else, and it's a whole lot more difficult than I ever could have imagined. It's a good thing we're really close friends, because it seems like most of our ideas are polar opposites. However, I do think eventually we'll agree on a compromise and still like each other. Hopefully. :-)

I've never written a time travel story before, but one of my favorite series of all times is Diana Gabaldon's Outlander. Mostly because I've become emotionally invested in the characters of Jamie and Claire, but also because of my love for historical romance—how people lived back then—and Gabaldon's series is loaded with fascinating tidbits about life in 18th century Scotland and America.

For my blog, Susana's Parlour, I have created a time-traveling Regency lady who is a character in the epilogue to my story, Treasuring Theresa (available as a bonus read on my web site). Lady Pendleton shares a secret with a mysterious apothecary that allows her to travel back and forth from 21st America. Miraculously, she ended up at my house in Toledo last winter, and I've had a lovely time picking her brain about life in the Regency period for my blog…and my writing, of course. Lady P is currently back in the Regency visiting her family—she has a new grandson, you know—but she plans to be back after the Little Season and flee with me to Florida for the winter. I wonder how she'll like Bingo Night at the retirement community?

Time travel appeals to me because I've always wanted to know how it felt to live in times gone by. I'm not sure I'd want to give up some of my modern conveniences—like modern medicine—for very long, but wouldn't it be fabulous to go to a ball, ride in a carriage, and visit some of the other places that no longer exist, such as Almack's Assembly Rooms and the Vauxhall Pleasure Gardens?

It's probably a good thing that I can't, though, because I'd be seriously tempted to violate the Prime Directive (yes, I'm a Trekker also, believe it or not) and warn the Princess Charlotte to demand a real physician and not the quack that cost her life and her son's. And if Princess Charlotte and her son had lived, Queen Victoria would likely never have lived…and where would that leave Will and Kate and their sweet baby George?


Of all the clans that supported Bonnie Prince Charlie, Clan Macintosh lost the most men at the disastrous battle at Culloden. Photo from my recent trip to Scotland.
But Jamie and Claire tried to prevent Culloden, and could not, so perhaps there a reason events happen as they do, even when those events seem senseless and cruel. (You see, I'm thinking of Jamie and Claire as real people and time travel as a real possibility. Not an unusual occurrence, I assure you. My mind has always worked this way.)

So…while I mull over the plot for my Valentine's time travel, I'm curious to know if you are equally intrigued with the time travel trope. If you could travel back in time, where would you want to go? What or who would you like to see? Do you think you might want to stay there? What—if anything—would you like to change if you could?

In honor of my first post on this fabulous blog, I'm offering a 2013 deck of Ellora's Cave playing cards to a commenter chosen at random (international). Yep, the back of the cards are covers from a wide variety of Ellora's Cave book covers. Treasuring Theresa's is one of the tamest! Definitely something to inspire interesting conversation the next time you have a card-playing evening! (Here's a deck from 2010 you can order from the EC web site.)

About the Author

A former teacher, Susana is finally living her dream of being a full-time writer. She loves all genres of romance, but historical—Regency in particular—is her favorite. There’s just something about dashing heroes and spunky heroines waltzing in ballrooms and driving through Hyde Park that appeals to her imagination.


In real life, Susana is a lifelong resident of northwest Ohio, although she has lived in Ecuador and studied in Spain, France and Mexico. More recently, she was able to travel around the UK and visit many of the places she’s read about for years, and it was awesome! She is a member of the Maumee Valley and Beau Monde chapters of Romance Writers of America.



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About Treasuring Theresa

She's a country lady. He's a London swell. They have nothing in common. Or have they?

Lady Theresa despises London society. What's worse is that she has to attend the betrothal ball of the young man she expected to marry. To deflect all the pitiful glances from the other guests, she makes a play for the most striking gentleman there—who happens to be her Cousin Damian, who is everything she despises.

Damian, Lord Clinton sees a desperate young lady with no social graces, and it solidifies his opinion that country folk are beneath him. But it so happens that he is the heir to that young lady's father's title and estate, and the time comes when he finds himself obliged to spend some time there. 

Thrown together, both Damian and Theresa discover each other's hidden depths. But are their differences too much to overcome to make a successful match?


4 comments:

Tina Donahue said...

Welcome to SNSD, Susana!! Your books sound delightful. I love regencies and time travel. :)

Denysé Bridger said...

Susana, Welcome to the Divas - Tina's wonderful, and everyone is so much fun, and very supportive. I have to admit, I've read a few time travels, but mostly, I tend to go for straight historical. I'm utterly fascinated with Victorian England, and the American West, post Civil War. I think I could happily live in either.

Congratulations on your new book, and much success with the collaboration!! I've worked with a partner a couple of times, and once you find that magic rhythm of sharing a brain for writing, it's a lot of fun!!

All the best,
Denyse

jean hart stewart said...

Welcome!! Your premise sounds very interesting...Much luck with it. Jean

Susana Ellis said...

Congrats to Denysé for winning the deck of Ellora's Cave playing cards!

And thanks to Tina and Jean for dropping by as well!