The Wenches Welcome Jeannie Lin!

Pat here, welcoming back Jeannie Lin, author of Chinese historical romances and soon, a mystery set
Jeannielin_photo_highresduring the Tang dynasty. Jeannie started writing her first romance while working as a high school science teacher in South Central Los Angeles. Her first three novels have received starred reviews in Publishers Weekly and Library Journal and The Dragon and the Pearl was listed among Library Journal's Best Romances of 2011.

Jeannie currently writes historical romances for Harlequin Historical and Harlequin HQN.

 Jeannie, you’re a science teacher! What drew you to writing romance?

When I started my first book, it was actually a “West meets East” sort of fantasy set in a land based on ancient China. Yet as I was creating what I felt was an epic tale – double crosses, love triangles, dramatic deaths – I realized I didn’t feel anything on the page for my characters. I wondered, how do I fix that? How do I learn how to write emotion?

Well, the answer was on the other part of my bookshelf: in romance novels.


What I always loved about romance novels, what really hooked me, was the stories that could give you that tight, achy feeling in your chest when you felt that your heart was truly breaking for these characters. So I started writing that first book as a romance and suddenly everything worked. I knew that I had found a place where I could tell the stories I wanted to tell.

What was your first book, and how well do you think it characterizes your latest work?

My first published work was Butterfly Swords, a tale about a princess on the run from an arranged marriage and the blue-eyed barbarian she encounters along the way. The book was very much the book of my heart, there were sword fights surrounding an angsty tale of forbidden love.

But there was a lot I was afraid of when I was writing Butterfly Swords. I wondered how much cultural detail to include? How much would readers accept?

JLCoverIn many ways, my upcoming release, The Sword Dancer, was a second chance at writing a swordfight adventure. I was no longer afraid of making the story “too Chinese”, no longer afraid of taking more risks in terms of worldbuilding and culture and character. I don’t know if it works at all, but I felt that I didn’t hold back this time around.
 
I adore learning about different cultures and history, but your characterizations are what make your  books so great. Which of your characters is your favorite, and why?

There are two: Ling Suyin and Li Tao from The Dragon and the Pearl. Something about that story really clicked for me. The book itself apparently was quite hit or miss with readers, but I do get the most fan mail regarding Li Tao and I always feel extra special when someone tells me they’ve enjoyed reading him. Ling Suyin is the heroine who was closest to me in age. She was smart and thoughtful (at least I thought so).

Writing the two of them together was just a pleasure. It was the third manuscript I had written (my 2nd published) and it was the first book where I felt I found my voice and my characters found their voice. They had a sort of maturity in their worldviews that really resonated with me.     

You definitely write with the confidence of an experienced author, although I saw that in your first book. Which book, if any, was the most difficult for you to write, and why?

LOL. Whatever effing book is due next. I really hoped that things would start getting easier for me, but every book is a fight which is why every release is such a celebration for me. I’m not a natural writer. I’m not a fast writer.  

Sorry, writing never gets easier! I have over fifty published novels and each one is the hardest I’ve ever written!

In attempting to conquer a book, what do you consider key elements of a great story?

Compelling characters. Characters with an “active inner life” to borrow a term I heard from Donald Maass.  

I totally agree. Characters are the story as far as I’m concerned. Are there any trends you hope to see in romance in the next few years?

I gravitate toward authors who push the boundaries in their stories. I’d love to see more variety in storytelling and settings in historical romance, of course.  I’m also a fan of science fiction, so some great futuristic, space opera type romances would be great.
 
Fantasy romance of an other-wordly sort! Yes! Other than fantasizing, what is the best part about being a writer?  The most frustrating?

The best part is the high you get when you realize that people have read and enjoyed your story. The most frustrating part is trying to guess what will happen in the industry, then allowing it to affect your creative process.
 
Would you like to tell us a little about your book? And about the upcoming mystery series?

The Sword Dancer (ISBN: 978-0373297429 May 21, 2013 Harlequin)
follows an infamous thief-catcher as he chases a suspected thief and rebel (our titular sword dancer) in a cat and mouse game across the province.  It’s an action/adventure story that gives a peek into the world of law and order in the late Tang Dynasty. I wanted to write a romance that was at first full of flirtation and antagonism which eventually leads to respect, passion and love.

The Lotus Palace, (ISBN: 978-0373777730 August 27, 2013 Harlequin HQN)
is the start of a new historical romance mystery series. It’s focused around an area of the imperial
Lotus Palace_300dpicapital called the North Hamlet, or the Pingkang li. It was the pleasure quarter where scholars and officials mingled with elite courtesans, creating a unique culture that elevated and immortalized these women, praising them as goddesses, while at the same time enslaving them and making them subservient.

Changan, the Tang Dynasty capital, was one of the most cosmopolitan cities in the world which I felt would make it the perfect setting for a cast of colorful characters and an endless supply of mysteries they could solve. The Lotus Palace features an unlikely pairing between a maidservant and a notorious playboy and failed scholar as they investigate the murder of a famous courtesan. The sequel, The Jade Temptress, is currently in progress. 

I’ve read Lotus Palace and I’m already eager to see more of your notorious playboy and independent maidservant detectives!

Thank you, Jeannie, for being with us today. We're giving away a copy of The Sword Dancer to some lucky commenter, so hop in and talk to Jeannie. What do you think of historicals written long, long ago, in far away places?

Find out more about Jeannie online at http://www.jeannielin.com

 

A portion of Patricia Rice's backlist can be found at backlistebooks.com/

110 thoughts on “The Wenches Welcome Jeannie Lin!”

  1. I love Jeannie’s books and have followed her publishing career eagerly since the first one. I agree, it is so crucial that we vary the historical situations more and get to read more stories, like Jeannie’s that have not been told before. Thank you for this insightful interview!
    Piper

    Reply
  2. I love Jeannie’s books and have followed her publishing career eagerly since the first one. I agree, it is so crucial that we vary the historical situations more and get to read more stories, like Jeannie’s that have not been told before. Thank you for this insightful interview!
    Piper

    Reply
  3. I love Jeannie’s books and have followed her publishing career eagerly since the first one. I agree, it is so crucial that we vary the historical situations more and get to read more stories, like Jeannie’s that have not been told before. Thank you for this insightful interview!
    Piper

    Reply
  4. I love Jeannie’s books and have followed her publishing career eagerly since the first one. I agree, it is so crucial that we vary the historical situations more and get to read more stories, like Jeannie’s that have not been told before. Thank you for this insightful interview!
    Piper

    Reply
  5. I love Jeannie’s books and have followed her publishing career eagerly since the first one. I agree, it is so crucial that we vary the historical situations more and get to read more stories, like Jeannie’s that have not been told before. Thank you for this insightful interview!
    Piper

    Reply
  6. Jeannie–
    As Pat says, writing never gets easier, but what fabulous stories you’ve been producing! And what stunning covers Harlequin has been giving you. THE SWORD DANCER is particularly to die for.
    So keep it up, even if writing never gets easier. That which does not kill us makes us better writers. *G*

    Reply
  7. Jeannie–
    As Pat says, writing never gets easier, but what fabulous stories you’ve been producing! And what stunning covers Harlequin has been giving you. THE SWORD DANCER is particularly to die for.
    So keep it up, even if writing never gets easier. That which does not kill us makes us better writers. *G*

    Reply
  8. Jeannie–
    As Pat says, writing never gets easier, but what fabulous stories you’ve been producing! And what stunning covers Harlequin has been giving you. THE SWORD DANCER is particularly to die for.
    So keep it up, even if writing never gets easier. That which does not kill us makes us better writers. *G*

    Reply
  9. Jeannie–
    As Pat says, writing never gets easier, but what fabulous stories you’ve been producing! And what stunning covers Harlequin has been giving you. THE SWORD DANCER is particularly to die for.
    So keep it up, even if writing never gets easier. That which does not kill us makes us better writers. *G*

    Reply
  10. Jeannie–
    As Pat says, writing never gets easier, but what fabulous stories you’ve been producing! And what stunning covers Harlequin has been giving you. THE SWORD DANCER is particularly to die for.
    So keep it up, even if writing never gets easier. That which does not kill us makes us better writers. *G*

    Reply
  11. Thanks for stopping by, Jeannie! And I’m thinking the writing will kill me soon enough. “G”
    And my answer to my own question is that I love history that takes me to different places.

    Reply
  12. Thanks for stopping by, Jeannie! And I’m thinking the writing will kill me soon enough. “G”
    And my answer to my own question is that I love history that takes me to different places.

    Reply
  13. Thanks for stopping by, Jeannie! And I’m thinking the writing will kill me soon enough. “G”
    And my answer to my own question is that I love history that takes me to different places.

    Reply
  14. Thanks for stopping by, Jeannie! And I’m thinking the writing will kill me soon enough. “G”
    And my answer to my own question is that I love history that takes me to different places.

    Reply
  15. Thanks for stopping by, Jeannie! And I’m thinking the writing will kill me soon enough. “G”
    And my answer to my own question is that I love history that takes me to different places.

    Reply
  16. I’m all for variety in romance historicals so long as Regency, Georgian, and Victorian settings are included in the mix. I’d love to see the range extended, but I don’t want my favorite periods to be forgotten.:)
    The Lotus Palace sounds wonderful. I especially like the description of the hero; “playboy and failed scholar” is an intriguing combination.

    Reply
  17. I’m all for variety in romance historicals so long as Regency, Georgian, and Victorian settings are included in the mix. I’d love to see the range extended, but I don’t want my favorite periods to be forgotten.:)
    The Lotus Palace sounds wonderful. I especially like the description of the hero; “playboy and failed scholar” is an intriguing combination.

    Reply
  18. I’m all for variety in romance historicals so long as Regency, Georgian, and Victorian settings are included in the mix. I’d love to see the range extended, but I don’t want my favorite periods to be forgotten.:)
    The Lotus Palace sounds wonderful. I especially like the description of the hero; “playboy and failed scholar” is an intriguing combination.

    Reply
  19. I’m all for variety in romance historicals so long as Regency, Georgian, and Victorian settings are included in the mix. I’d love to see the range extended, but I don’t want my favorite periods to be forgotten.:)
    The Lotus Palace sounds wonderful. I especially like the description of the hero; “playboy and failed scholar” is an intriguing combination.

    Reply
  20. I’m all for variety in romance historicals so long as Regency, Georgian, and Victorian settings are included in the mix. I’d love to see the range extended, but I don’t want my favorite periods to be forgotten.:)
    The Lotus Palace sounds wonderful. I especially like the description of the hero; “playboy and failed scholar” is an intriguing combination.

    Reply
  21. Thank you for the lovely interview. I have been eying Jeannie Lin’s books for some time, and now I am ready to jump on The Sword Dancer. (Why, oh why, is the kindle publishing date later than the print date?) Oh, and I am also very excited about this failed scholar dude. Some of us need role models, you know?
    I am rather sorry that the world has lost a cool high school science teacher. I have such fond memories of mine. But I guess authors (especially historical fiction authors) are all teachers as well as storytellers.

    Reply
  22. Thank you for the lovely interview. I have been eying Jeannie Lin’s books for some time, and now I am ready to jump on The Sword Dancer. (Why, oh why, is the kindle publishing date later than the print date?) Oh, and I am also very excited about this failed scholar dude. Some of us need role models, you know?
    I am rather sorry that the world has lost a cool high school science teacher. I have such fond memories of mine. But I guess authors (especially historical fiction authors) are all teachers as well as storytellers.

    Reply
  23. Thank you for the lovely interview. I have been eying Jeannie Lin’s books for some time, and now I am ready to jump on The Sword Dancer. (Why, oh why, is the kindle publishing date later than the print date?) Oh, and I am also very excited about this failed scholar dude. Some of us need role models, you know?
    I am rather sorry that the world has lost a cool high school science teacher. I have such fond memories of mine. But I guess authors (especially historical fiction authors) are all teachers as well as storytellers.

    Reply
  24. Thank you for the lovely interview. I have been eying Jeannie Lin’s books for some time, and now I am ready to jump on The Sword Dancer. (Why, oh why, is the kindle publishing date later than the print date?) Oh, and I am also very excited about this failed scholar dude. Some of us need role models, you know?
    I am rather sorry that the world has lost a cool high school science teacher. I have such fond memories of mine. But I guess authors (especially historical fiction authors) are all teachers as well as storytellers.

    Reply
  25. Thank you for the lovely interview. I have been eying Jeannie Lin’s books for some time, and now I am ready to jump on The Sword Dancer. (Why, oh why, is the kindle publishing date later than the print date?) Oh, and I am also very excited about this failed scholar dude. Some of us need role models, you know?
    I am rather sorry that the world has lost a cool high school science teacher. I have such fond memories of mine. But I guess authors (especially historical fiction authors) are all teachers as well as storytellers.

    Reply
  26. I’ve been meaning to read Jeannie Lin’s books for quite a while now, and have a few in my (monstrous) TBR pile. I think I’ll move them closer to the top now.
    I have what is probably one of the stranger problems with reading books set in China, though. The names of characters usually don’t have tones, so I’m lost as to how to pronounce them! Surnames are easy enough, since there are only so many of them, but given names? Is it supposed to be ī, í, ǐ, or ì? And then I get so caught up trying to figure this out it distracts me from the story. After a while I usually just pick one and go with it, but it takes me a while. (I suppose this is what I get for actually speaking Chinese.)

    Reply
  27. I’ve been meaning to read Jeannie Lin’s books for quite a while now, and have a few in my (monstrous) TBR pile. I think I’ll move them closer to the top now.
    I have what is probably one of the stranger problems with reading books set in China, though. The names of characters usually don’t have tones, so I’m lost as to how to pronounce them! Surnames are easy enough, since there are only so many of them, but given names? Is it supposed to be ī, í, ǐ, or ì? And then I get so caught up trying to figure this out it distracts me from the story. After a while I usually just pick one and go with it, but it takes me a while. (I suppose this is what I get for actually speaking Chinese.)

    Reply
  28. I’ve been meaning to read Jeannie Lin’s books for quite a while now, and have a few in my (monstrous) TBR pile. I think I’ll move them closer to the top now.
    I have what is probably one of the stranger problems with reading books set in China, though. The names of characters usually don’t have tones, so I’m lost as to how to pronounce them! Surnames are easy enough, since there are only so many of them, but given names? Is it supposed to be ī, í, ǐ, or ì? And then I get so caught up trying to figure this out it distracts me from the story. After a while I usually just pick one and go with it, but it takes me a while. (I suppose this is what I get for actually speaking Chinese.)

    Reply
  29. I’ve been meaning to read Jeannie Lin’s books for quite a while now, and have a few in my (monstrous) TBR pile. I think I’ll move them closer to the top now.
    I have what is probably one of the stranger problems with reading books set in China, though. The names of characters usually don’t have tones, so I’m lost as to how to pronounce them! Surnames are easy enough, since there are only so many of them, but given names? Is it supposed to be ī, í, ǐ, or ì? And then I get so caught up trying to figure this out it distracts me from the story. After a while I usually just pick one and go with it, but it takes me a while. (I suppose this is what I get for actually speaking Chinese.)

    Reply
  30. I’ve been meaning to read Jeannie Lin’s books for quite a while now, and have a few in my (monstrous) TBR pile. I think I’ll move them closer to the top now.
    I have what is probably one of the stranger problems with reading books set in China, though. The names of characters usually don’t have tones, so I’m lost as to how to pronounce them! Surnames are easy enough, since there are only so many of them, but given names? Is it supposed to be ī, í, ǐ, or ì? And then I get so caught up trying to figure this out it distracts me from the story. After a while I usually just pick one and go with it, but it takes me a while. (I suppose this is what I get for actually speaking Chinese.)

    Reply
  31. Enjoyed the interview very much, thanks, Pat and Jeannie.
    Jeannie I was there in the audience when you won your Golden Heart and announced that Mills and Boon/Harlequin had bought you. I really cheered — as a former M&B historical author, I’ve always said that M&B are the most open-minded historical publishers out there, publishing good books, regardless of setting and time periods. I love varied time periods and enjoyed Butterfly Swords very much. Looking forward to the new books.

    Reply
  32. Enjoyed the interview very much, thanks, Pat and Jeannie.
    Jeannie I was there in the audience when you won your Golden Heart and announced that Mills and Boon/Harlequin had bought you. I really cheered — as a former M&B historical author, I’ve always said that M&B are the most open-minded historical publishers out there, publishing good books, regardless of setting and time periods. I love varied time periods and enjoyed Butterfly Swords very much. Looking forward to the new books.

    Reply
  33. Enjoyed the interview very much, thanks, Pat and Jeannie.
    Jeannie I was there in the audience when you won your Golden Heart and announced that Mills and Boon/Harlequin had bought you. I really cheered — as a former M&B historical author, I’ve always said that M&B are the most open-minded historical publishers out there, publishing good books, regardless of setting and time periods. I love varied time periods and enjoyed Butterfly Swords very much. Looking forward to the new books.

    Reply
  34. Enjoyed the interview very much, thanks, Pat and Jeannie.
    Jeannie I was there in the audience when you won your Golden Heart and announced that Mills and Boon/Harlequin had bought you. I really cheered — as a former M&B historical author, I’ve always said that M&B are the most open-minded historical publishers out there, publishing good books, regardless of setting and time periods. I love varied time periods and enjoyed Butterfly Swords very much. Looking forward to the new books.

    Reply
  35. Enjoyed the interview very much, thanks, Pat and Jeannie.
    Jeannie I was there in the audience when you won your Golden Heart and announced that Mills and Boon/Harlequin had bought you. I really cheered — as a former M&B historical author, I’ve always said that M&B are the most open-minded historical publishers out there, publishing good books, regardless of setting and time periods. I love varied time periods and enjoyed Butterfly Swords very much. Looking forward to the new books.

    Reply
  36. Katherine — I miss teaching quite a bit which is probably why I always jump at the opportunity to do workshops when I get the chance. I fear I’m a lot better at teaching Chemistry than I am at teaching writing though. But teaching is also part of learning, right? (And at least it’s only a week until the ebook date!)

    Reply
  37. Katherine — I miss teaching quite a bit which is probably why I always jump at the opportunity to do workshops when I get the chance. I fear I’m a lot better at teaching Chemistry than I am at teaching writing though. But teaching is also part of learning, right? (And at least it’s only a week until the ebook date!)

    Reply
  38. Katherine — I miss teaching quite a bit which is probably why I always jump at the opportunity to do workshops when I get the chance. I fear I’m a lot better at teaching Chemistry than I am at teaching writing though. But teaching is also part of learning, right? (And at least it’s only a week until the ebook date!)

    Reply
  39. Katherine — I miss teaching quite a bit which is probably why I always jump at the opportunity to do workshops when I get the chance. I fear I’m a lot better at teaching Chemistry than I am at teaching writing though. But teaching is also part of learning, right? (And at least it’s only a week until the ebook date!)

    Reply
  40. Katherine — I miss teaching quite a bit which is probably why I always jump at the opportunity to do workshops when I get the chance. I fear I’m a lot better at teaching Chemistry than I am at teaching writing though. But teaching is also part of learning, right? (And at least it’s only a week until the ebook date!)

    Reply
  41. Ella – All the books can be read as standalone, though I’d suggest Butterfly Swords be read before The Dragon and the Pearl. The other two – My Fair Concubine and The Sword Dancer – are unconnected

    Reply
  42. Ella – All the books can be read as standalone, though I’d suggest Butterfly Swords be read before The Dragon and the Pearl. The other two – My Fair Concubine and The Sword Dancer – are unconnected

    Reply
  43. Ella – All the books can be read as standalone, though I’d suggest Butterfly Swords be read before The Dragon and the Pearl. The other two – My Fair Concubine and The Sword Dancer – are unconnected

    Reply
  44. Ella – All the books can be read as standalone, though I’d suggest Butterfly Swords be read before The Dragon and the Pearl. The other two – My Fair Concubine and The Sword Dancer – are unconnected

    Reply
  45. Ella – All the books can be read as standalone, though I’d suggest Butterfly Swords be read before The Dragon and the Pearl. The other two – My Fair Concubine and The Sword Dancer – are unconnected

    Reply
  46. Margot – How wonderful that you speak/read Chinese! I have at times used accents or tonal marks on names, but I think more readers get distracted by that, plus I know some ebook readers would get the names mangled in their reader. Thief-catcher Han’s name is actually the characters for “hao han” that mean heroic — Tee hee. Yes, my hero’s name is “heroic”…but Asians like names like that, even in modern times. In Li Feng’s name, Feng is the character for phoenix. It does, however, make for an interesting blog post down the line. Occasionally, I get organized enough to list the characters for anyone interested. These are for Butterfly Swords and The Dragon and the Pearl: http://www.jeannielin.com/trivia-character-names-in-mandarin/

    Reply
  47. Margot – How wonderful that you speak/read Chinese! I have at times used accents or tonal marks on names, but I think more readers get distracted by that, plus I know some ebook readers would get the names mangled in their reader. Thief-catcher Han’s name is actually the characters for “hao han” that mean heroic — Tee hee. Yes, my hero’s name is “heroic”…but Asians like names like that, even in modern times. In Li Feng’s name, Feng is the character for phoenix. It does, however, make for an interesting blog post down the line. Occasionally, I get organized enough to list the characters for anyone interested. These are for Butterfly Swords and The Dragon and the Pearl: http://www.jeannielin.com/trivia-character-names-in-mandarin/

    Reply
  48. Margot – How wonderful that you speak/read Chinese! I have at times used accents or tonal marks on names, but I think more readers get distracted by that, plus I know some ebook readers would get the names mangled in their reader. Thief-catcher Han’s name is actually the characters for “hao han” that mean heroic — Tee hee. Yes, my hero’s name is “heroic”…but Asians like names like that, even in modern times. In Li Feng’s name, Feng is the character for phoenix. It does, however, make for an interesting blog post down the line. Occasionally, I get organized enough to list the characters for anyone interested. These are for Butterfly Swords and The Dragon and the Pearl: http://www.jeannielin.com/trivia-character-names-in-mandarin/

    Reply
  49. Margot – How wonderful that you speak/read Chinese! I have at times used accents or tonal marks on names, but I think more readers get distracted by that, plus I know some ebook readers would get the names mangled in their reader. Thief-catcher Han’s name is actually the characters for “hao han” that mean heroic — Tee hee. Yes, my hero’s name is “heroic”…but Asians like names like that, even in modern times. In Li Feng’s name, Feng is the character for phoenix. It does, however, make for an interesting blog post down the line. Occasionally, I get organized enough to list the characters for anyone interested. These are for Butterfly Swords and The Dragon and the Pearl: http://www.jeannielin.com/trivia-character-names-in-mandarin/

    Reply
  50. Margot – How wonderful that you speak/read Chinese! I have at times used accents or tonal marks on names, but I think more readers get distracted by that, plus I know some ebook readers would get the names mangled in their reader. Thief-catcher Han’s name is actually the characters for “hao han” that mean heroic — Tee hee. Yes, my hero’s name is “heroic”…but Asians like names like that, even in modern times. In Li Feng’s name, Feng is the character for phoenix. It does, however, make for an interesting blog post down the line. Occasionally, I get organized enough to list the characters for anyone interested. These are for Butterfly Swords and The Dragon and the Pearl: http://www.jeannielin.com/trivia-character-names-in-mandarin/

    Reply
  51. Margot – I wrote out a long reply that must have gotten eaten. (I suspect a kidlet hit the keyboard)
    How great that you can read/speak Chinese! I pondered about whether to include accents or tonal marks in the romanization, but think that it’s more distracts readers who don’t know how to pronounce it. Plus I had heard of some names where I had included accent marks getting mangled by ereaders, so I tend to leave them off. It does make for potentially a fascinating blog post down the line!
    “Hao Han” is actually the characters for “heroic”. Tee hee…my hero’s name is “heroic”, but from what I can see, Asians do like names like that, even in modern times. (I have a whole long story about how my mom constructed my real name and my sister’s name to be a couplet, even though we’re four years apart. She also made sure our full names follow a certain meter so they sound very melodic to the ear). In Li Feng, “feng” is the character for phoenix.
    Once in a while, I get organized enough to provide the Chinese names. Here was the list for Butterfly Swords and The Dragon and the Pearl: http://www.jeannielin.com/trivia-character-names-in-mandarin/

    Reply
  52. Margot – I wrote out a long reply that must have gotten eaten. (I suspect a kidlet hit the keyboard)
    How great that you can read/speak Chinese! I pondered about whether to include accents or tonal marks in the romanization, but think that it’s more distracts readers who don’t know how to pronounce it. Plus I had heard of some names where I had included accent marks getting mangled by ereaders, so I tend to leave them off. It does make for potentially a fascinating blog post down the line!
    “Hao Han” is actually the characters for “heroic”. Tee hee…my hero’s name is “heroic”, but from what I can see, Asians do like names like that, even in modern times. (I have a whole long story about how my mom constructed my real name and my sister’s name to be a couplet, even though we’re four years apart. She also made sure our full names follow a certain meter so they sound very melodic to the ear). In Li Feng, “feng” is the character for phoenix.
    Once in a while, I get organized enough to provide the Chinese names. Here was the list for Butterfly Swords and The Dragon and the Pearl: http://www.jeannielin.com/trivia-character-names-in-mandarin/

    Reply
  53. Margot – I wrote out a long reply that must have gotten eaten. (I suspect a kidlet hit the keyboard)
    How great that you can read/speak Chinese! I pondered about whether to include accents or tonal marks in the romanization, but think that it’s more distracts readers who don’t know how to pronounce it. Plus I had heard of some names where I had included accent marks getting mangled by ereaders, so I tend to leave them off. It does make for potentially a fascinating blog post down the line!
    “Hao Han” is actually the characters for “heroic”. Tee hee…my hero’s name is “heroic”, but from what I can see, Asians do like names like that, even in modern times. (I have a whole long story about how my mom constructed my real name and my sister’s name to be a couplet, even though we’re four years apart. She also made sure our full names follow a certain meter so they sound very melodic to the ear). In Li Feng, “feng” is the character for phoenix.
    Once in a while, I get organized enough to provide the Chinese names. Here was the list for Butterfly Swords and The Dragon and the Pearl: http://www.jeannielin.com/trivia-character-names-in-mandarin/

    Reply
  54. Margot – I wrote out a long reply that must have gotten eaten. (I suspect a kidlet hit the keyboard)
    How great that you can read/speak Chinese! I pondered about whether to include accents or tonal marks in the romanization, but think that it’s more distracts readers who don’t know how to pronounce it. Plus I had heard of some names where I had included accent marks getting mangled by ereaders, so I tend to leave them off. It does make for potentially a fascinating blog post down the line!
    “Hao Han” is actually the characters for “heroic”. Tee hee…my hero’s name is “heroic”, but from what I can see, Asians do like names like that, even in modern times. (I have a whole long story about how my mom constructed my real name and my sister’s name to be a couplet, even though we’re four years apart. She also made sure our full names follow a certain meter so they sound very melodic to the ear). In Li Feng, “feng” is the character for phoenix.
    Once in a while, I get organized enough to provide the Chinese names. Here was the list for Butterfly Swords and The Dragon and the Pearl: http://www.jeannielin.com/trivia-character-names-in-mandarin/

    Reply
  55. Margot – I wrote out a long reply that must have gotten eaten. (I suspect a kidlet hit the keyboard)
    How great that you can read/speak Chinese! I pondered about whether to include accents or tonal marks in the romanization, but think that it’s more distracts readers who don’t know how to pronounce it. Plus I had heard of some names where I had included accent marks getting mangled by ereaders, so I tend to leave them off. It does make for potentially a fascinating blog post down the line!
    “Hao Han” is actually the characters for “heroic”. Tee hee…my hero’s name is “heroic”, but from what I can see, Asians do like names like that, even in modern times. (I have a whole long story about how my mom constructed my real name and my sister’s name to be a couplet, even though we’re four years apart. She also made sure our full names follow a certain meter so they sound very melodic to the ear). In Li Feng, “feng” is the character for phoenix.
    Once in a while, I get organized enough to provide the Chinese names. Here was the list for Butterfly Swords and The Dragon and the Pearl: http://www.jeannielin.com/trivia-character-names-in-mandarin/

    Reply
  56. If the wenches were really organized, we’d give our guests a welcome how-to guide for the mysterious depths of Typepad. Howsomever, we’re not too cool on organization, sorry! Your workshops are just fine, better than most of us introverts can do!

    Reply
  57. If the wenches were really organized, we’d give our guests a welcome how-to guide for the mysterious depths of Typepad. Howsomever, we’re not too cool on organization, sorry! Your workshops are just fine, better than most of us introverts can do!

    Reply
  58. If the wenches were really organized, we’d give our guests a welcome how-to guide for the mysterious depths of Typepad. Howsomever, we’re not too cool on organization, sorry! Your workshops are just fine, better than most of us introverts can do!

    Reply
  59. If the wenches were really organized, we’d give our guests a welcome how-to guide for the mysterious depths of Typepad. Howsomever, we’re not too cool on organization, sorry! Your workshops are just fine, better than most of us introverts can do!

    Reply
  60. If the wenches were really organized, we’d give our guests a welcome how-to guide for the mysterious depths of Typepad. Howsomever, we’re not too cool on organization, sorry! Your workshops are just fine, better than most of us introverts can do!

    Reply
  61. Typepad is having some hiccup problems this morning. I’ve just released a few of Jeannie’s comments and even Anne’s (!) from the bowels of the spam commode. No idea why registered users would end up there.

    Reply
  62. Typepad is having some hiccup problems this morning. I’ve just released a few of Jeannie’s comments and even Anne’s (!) from the bowels of the spam commode. No idea why registered users would end up there.

    Reply
  63. Typepad is having some hiccup problems this morning. I’ve just released a few of Jeannie’s comments and even Anne’s (!) from the bowels of the spam commode. No idea why registered users would end up there.

    Reply
  64. Typepad is having some hiccup problems this morning. I’ve just released a few of Jeannie’s comments and even Anne’s (!) from the bowels of the spam commode. No idea why registered users would end up there.

    Reply
  65. Typepad is having some hiccup problems this morning. I’ve just released a few of Jeannie’s comments and even Anne’s (!) from the bowels of the spam commode. No idea why registered users would end up there.

    Reply
  66. I love historical fiction set in China. It’s fun to read how the author brings to life a story set in a time that had more rules to follow than the Regency Era.

    Reply
  67. I love historical fiction set in China. It’s fun to read how the author brings to life a story set in a time that had more rules to follow than the Regency Era.

    Reply
  68. I love historical fiction set in China. It’s fun to read how the author brings to life a story set in a time that had more rules to follow than the Regency Era.

    Reply
  69. I love historical fiction set in China. It’s fun to read how the author brings to life a story set in a time that had more rules to follow than the Regency Era.

    Reply
  70. I love historical fiction set in China. It’s fun to read how the author brings to life a story set in a time that had more rules to follow than the Regency Era.

    Reply
  71. Great interview, Wenches and Jeannie! Jeannie, I loved Li Tao and Ling Suyi! And I’m embarrassed to admit that I read The Dragon and the Pearl before I read Butterfly Swords, but it did completely work as a standalone as well, so there’s that 🙂
    And I love stories set in historical China–I’m thrilled to have been introduced to your work and am even more thrilled to know that you’re continuing to write more 🙂

    Reply
  72. Great interview, Wenches and Jeannie! Jeannie, I loved Li Tao and Ling Suyi! And I’m embarrassed to admit that I read The Dragon and the Pearl before I read Butterfly Swords, but it did completely work as a standalone as well, so there’s that 🙂
    And I love stories set in historical China–I’m thrilled to have been introduced to your work and am even more thrilled to know that you’re continuing to write more 🙂

    Reply
  73. Great interview, Wenches and Jeannie! Jeannie, I loved Li Tao and Ling Suyi! And I’m embarrassed to admit that I read The Dragon and the Pearl before I read Butterfly Swords, but it did completely work as a standalone as well, so there’s that 🙂
    And I love stories set in historical China–I’m thrilled to have been introduced to your work and am even more thrilled to know that you’re continuing to write more 🙂

    Reply
  74. Great interview, Wenches and Jeannie! Jeannie, I loved Li Tao and Ling Suyi! And I’m embarrassed to admit that I read The Dragon and the Pearl before I read Butterfly Swords, but it did completely work as a standalone as well, so there’s that 🙂
    And I love stories set in historical China–I’m thrilled to have been introduced to your work and am even more thrilled to know that you’re continuing to write more 🙂

    Reply
  75. Great interview, Wenches and Jeannie! Jeannie, I loved Li Tao and Ling Suyi! And I’m embarrassed to admit that I read The Dragon and the Pearl before I read Butterfly Swords, but it did completely work as a standalone as well, so there’s that 🙂
    And I love stories set in historical China–I’m thrilled to have been introduced to your work and am even more thrilled to know that you’re continuing to write more 🙂

    Reply

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