Blatant Promotional Spotlight Presents:
The Word Wenches Author Interview!
(whose initials are perfect for a little, er, shameless PR!)
July 5, 2006
"(A) superb tale and magnificent series." –TheBestReviews.com
New York Times bestselling author Patricia Rice enchants readers with the finale to her "Magic" series—the story of Aidan Dougal, whose need for the love of one amazing woman is as great as his towering physique and turbulent emotions….
A man of mystery, estranged from his family, Aidan Dougal is convinced he brings disaster wherever he goes. Asking for help is out of the question, let alone relationships or marriage…until he is forced to accept the assistance of a gentle young woman whose beauty and strange enchantments turn his cool composure to passion….Mora Abbott is not the meek vicar’s daughter she appears to be, for she yearns to discover more about her inborn magical talents. Aidan stirs her soul in every way, and presents a formidable challenge…but first he must be willing to explore with Mora the potential and passion of their combined magical powers, and willing to open his heart to love….
WW: Hi, Pat, thanks for answering a few questions. Can you tell us how long you’ve been writing?
PR: Since my chubby hand could hold a crayon. Okay, maybe those first stories weren’t real comprehensible to anyone except me… But my father worked at IBM, and he brought home a used Selectric when I was in fifth grade. I never looked back. I’d been scribbling in notebooks well before that, but within a year I’d taught myself how to type and was writing dramatic tragedies of love gone wrong and mysteries about ten-year-old girls and haunted houses.
You didn’t ask how long I’ve been writing anything publishable. <G>
WW: How did you become interested in writing romance?
PR: I’m an introvert, a bookworm, one of those children who would sit in an apple tree and read all summer if little brothers weren’t such a nuisance. Ripped from my comfortable nest in upstate New York when I was nine, I never quite learned to fit into my Old Kentucky Home, so I buried my isolation in the lives of people in books. For whatever reason, I fell in love with the stories of Jane Austen and the Brontes at a very early age, and when I read books like Cherry Ames and Nancy Drew, I often read them more for the relationships than the mysteries. So I’ve been a romance sucker from the very start.
WW: What was your first book, and how does your latest work differ from it?
PR: My first published book was one of those sensual early 80’s historical romances. I drew a lot from what I knew of the area I was living in at the time and used relationships I’d seen in my life and just mixed and matched and made things happen as I wrote. I was fascinated by steamboats and the early railroads and California, so all that research ended up in those 150,000 + words. It was similar to being given a huge wild lagoon to splash around in and explore, and I loved it. I knew utterly nothing about the market except what I liked. I did figure out that Zebra was a new publisher and they liked descriptive sensuality, but that was pretty much the limit of my knowledge. I didn’t know about RWA or RT and thought NYC was an unreachable distant land filled with brilliant wizards of publishing.
I know better now. <G>
MAGIC MAN was written as the sixth of a series of related books, so there wasn’t a lot of flying off on a magic carpet ride as I did with my first one. I had a hero whose exterior character had already been well developed, and a heroine whose background had already been established. I had an entire cast of characters just waiting for my hero to finally stumble and fall. I had a set of circumstances limiting the direction of my story, and the historical research already firmly in mind. And I still have my passionate desire to fly into the mist to see what happens. So instead of swimming madly about that lagoon, exploring my parameters, I already knew the lagoon, where I wanted to go, and how to get there. The fun part was diving down and discovering all the layers hidden beneath these two wonderful characters. I think the experience I’ve gained over these last twenty years has given me a richer well to draw on and a stronger ability to put the characters and their dreams down on paper. I hope.
WW: Are there some trends you hope to see in romance in the next few years?
PR: I absolutely love that romance has spread into all other genres and all other genres are appearing in romance. I want to see our horizons broadened so that anything goes, and I’m hoping that will come about with our explorations of fantasy and paranormal and mystery and suspense. And I think I’m seeing a trend for American westerns finally reappearing…I’m really rooting for that one.
WW: Where does your fascination for the supernatural and magical come from?
PR: I believe in ghosts. I believe in a spirit world. I believe our brains are not used for all the things they’re capable of doing. I believe aliens live on other planets. Just because no one has ever proved any of these things scientifically doesn’t mean they don’t exist. If you’ve read any of my Magic series, you can see where this is going. <G>
When I started the Magic series, I just used basic instincts that many of us possess without knowing how to use them. It has actually been scientifically proven that dogs can use their noses to detect cancer, that smells effect many areas of the brain, so I really wasn’t reaching very far with the first books. But as my editor realized that I wasn’t crazy, that people want to read about these things, I started pushing the limits further. I live inside my head and I have a vast capability to say “What if?” So when I reached Aidan’s story–what if he really could move mountains?
Wait until you see my next historical series! My “what ifs” have conjured an entire magical island of superpeople. I want a reason for standing stones like Stonehenge, and in my new series, I’ve found one. Our world is filled with magic and mystery, more than I can write about in my lifetime. To balance out the fantasy, I’ve set them in a very real and graphic historical time period—that of the French Revolution. Think “the Scarlet Pimpernel” meets Superman. Or maybe Little Mermaid and the Pirates of the Carribean, but substitute “English Channel…”.
WW: Of the wonderful heroes of the MAGIC books, Aidan Dougal will be a favorite for many fans. Did you always have Mora Abbott as his soul mate in mind, or did those two surprise you?
PR: Mora appeared about half way through the series, a disapproving, mysterious female with her own agenda. I had no idea what that agenda was. I had no idea that she would be Aidan’s heroine. At the time, I was dabbling with the idea of continuing the series with the Ives half-brothers and vaguely thought she might work with one of them, but they were all too young. And then Aidan decided he was looking for a mate, but it couldn’t be one of those harum-scarum Malcolm women because they would drive him mad. So, naturally, being the troublemaker that I am, I had to find him a Malcolm woman. I’d already had the notion that Mora was probably a witch or the daughter of one since she made potions. And obviously, she was strong enough to keep Aidan occupied and entertained for a lifetime. From there, it was just one tiny leap forward…
WW: MAGIC MAN is the finale for your MAGIC series…is there a chance that you’ll bring back the Ives and Malcolms in future books?
PR: There’s always a chance. As I said, I was toying with ideas for the half-brothers. And there’s all those wonderful children. And now that I think of it, many of them would be just about the right age to be interesting in 1789, when my next series starts…
Nah, not yet. But the ideas are there.
WW: Thanks, Pat — good luck with the new release!
To read an excerpt from MAGIC MAN, go here: http://patriciarice.com/magicmanexc.htm