Every writer starts out as a reader. I’m eternally grateful to some of my favorite authors not only for hours of entertainment, but for educating me about other countries, cultures and eras, for delighting me with mystery, magic, adventure and romance—and for inspiring me in many, many ways to write stories of my own.
At the moment, I’m especially grateful to Arthur Ransome, a British author of children’s books. His Swallows and Amazons series was published in the 1930’s and 40’s. They’re about some children who spend their summers sailing, mostly in the Lake District in England. The children get to camp by themselves—no grownups—and have all sorts of fun adventures. (My personal favorite is The Picts and the Martyrs, but they’re all wonderful stories.)
I’m thanking Arthur Ransome today because it was his books about the Lake District that inspired me to write a story that takes place there. I’ve visited the Lake District, although not for long enough to get a true feel for the region—but I got it another way, from reading Ransome’s books over and over as a child. Writing Lord Quickthorn’s Bargain, my novella in the anthology Passionate Promises, was a true joy, because I could put myself into that beautiful natural environment about which I’d read so much. Of course, my story is for adults, but the lakes and becks and fells are a perfect backdrop for a love story. And for a bit of magic, too!
Here’s the blurb:
Sensible Gwen Appleby is aghast when her foolish sister vows to pursue the notorious rake, Lord Quickthorn. To save her sister from certain ruin, she turns to her friend, the custodian of the fairy well. A simple spell, making Lord Quickthorn indifferent to her sister’s beauty, is all that’s required.
But Gwen’s friend is no longer at the well, and the new, mischievous, very male custodian agrees on one condition: Lord Quickthorn will turn his seductive wiles on Gwen instead. To save her sister’s virtue, must Gwen sacrifice her own? Worse, will the promise of passion make her long to do so?
Passionate Promises isn’t out till next week, but since I love doing giveaways, I’ll give the choice of another of my books to one lucky commenter. Here’s my question: Is there a particular author or authors for whose books you’re especially grateful? Why? Is it the story itself, or what you learned, or how it inspired you, or how it comforts you? I would love to know – and hope to get some reading recommendations, too!
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PASSIONATE PROMISES: An Embracing Romance Anthology
Nine Promises to Stir Your Passions from award-winning, bestselling authors. Enter the dazzling world of brawny Vikings, Regency rogues, and dashing scoundrels as they take you on one romantic journey after the other in historical novellas filled with betrayal, intrigue, and passion.