Wench Susan’s New Venture

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Pat here, proudly announcing:

Susan King's first historical romance, The Black Thorne's Rose, originally published by Topaz/Penguin–is finally available in e-book form in an "author's cut" — to be followed soon by The Raven's Wish, Angel Knight and several of Susan's earlier historicals.

First, to whet your whistle, here’s the official blurb:

  The Black Thorne's Rose
A high-born lady…a mysterious forest outlaw … a daring deception

With her castle and lands forfeit, gently bred Lady Emlyn refuses marriage to a cruel lord and flees into the greenwood–where she falls for a bold forest outlaw, the Black Thorne, who courts danger in King John’s England. Caught in a game of passion and daring deception, Emlyn learns too late that the mysterious outlaw and the ruthless lord she despises are one and the same man. Now, for Thorne and Emlyn both, the greatest risk of all exists in the truth…and love.

“Excellent…filled with mythical legends, mystery and mayhem… an extremely powerful story.” — Black thorne Rendezvous

"Magnificent!" — Virginia Henley

Now, here’s Susan!      

Pat: Your debut historical romance, The Black Thorne's Rose is now finally available! Tell us something about the book. Why did you choose to begin your career with a medieval romance?

Susan: A lifelong love of forest outlaws and Robin Hood tales, and bookshelves (and a brain) filled with medieval research sources — what better reasons to write a medieval romance? Seriously, at the time I didn't realize that writing historical fiction was about to become a career for me. I was on an academic track, and took leave from that because I had three sweet little guys at home who needed a full-time mom for a while. And writing fiction was my guilty pleasure then. It was something I loved doing in my little bits of free time. So I was curious to see if I could really write good fiction and actually finish a novel, maybe even see a book published before I resumed the PhD work and teaching.

I had been playing with this particular story idea while working on my dissertation (medieval manuscript illumination and a study of iconography). During my leave, I wrote the story of Lady Emlyn, an English medieval lady (and manuscript illuminator in her spare time!), who loses her family castle to one of King John's barons. Fleeing  English forest an arranged marriage, she meets a forest outlaw who has hidden ties to the man she has refused to marry. Emlyn and her outlaw are soon caught up in danger and vengeance, while love develops unexpectedly between them–though not unexpected to the reader!

In Black Thorne's Rose, I wrote the sort of story that I wanted to read myself — an adventure-romance, a Robin Hood sort of tale, with a passionate and layered romance developing between the heroine and her mysterious hero — and a lot of old-fashioned adventure too. The excitement and danger of hiding in the forest, practicing archery, escaping the baddies, jumping off cliffs, risky rescues, mixed with legend and mystery, and even touches of humor (well, I laughed, but hey, I wrote it!). And there's a certain last-minute escape at the end that may still be unique in romance!

Pat: Did you find that the story held up after several years? You've obviously changed and grown as a writer–what was it like to go back to that very first book and bring it out again?  And what exactly is an “author’s cut”?  

Susan: Reading it again myself, years later, I found that I still loved this story, still had that sense of excitement and anticipation and great fun that I had felt while writing it. So bringing this book back–which received fabulous reviews when it first came out, and for which I'm still grateful!–has been a wonderful experience for me. I look forward to going through my other early romances to get those ready for ebook publication.

Though this ebook version is not quite the same book that was published years ago. This is a new version–the "author's cut," I call it — meaning that the author has cut, trimmed, edited and vastly improved the book! When I sat down to read BTR again a Glasses few months ago, it was no longer as a newbie writer, but as an experienced author. Here was my chance to improve on a book I still truly loved. Some of that extraneous language had to go. Out came the red pencil and the "delete" button… I got rid of the "'tis twas, 'twere" contractions sprinkled liberally throughout; cut extra description (how many times do we need to describe the hero's gorgeousness?); and a lot of exclamation points bit the dust. I trimmed language — but the story, the events, the characters, all remained. I'm happy to say that The Black Thorne's Rose is fresh, lean and trim in its new incarnation, and still a fun story. 

Pat: Why did you decide to e-publish your earlier books, and what has that experience been like?

Susan: I've been planning to get my Susan King historical romances out in ebook form for a while now, and finally all the aspects came together — the time to review and edit, and the right company with the expertise to prepare and handle the ebooks. Not to mention my own understanding of the whole complicated process – trying to grasp what needed to be done and the best alternatives to choose. The learning curve on getting these books out in this form is very big, and I've been fortunate t
o have the advice and expertise of some wonderfully talented and knowledgeable people. My ebook publisher is ePublishingWorks!, a company run by Nina Paules, one of our own Word Wenches readers.  Nina is doing a beautiful job with all aspects of the e-pub process, and with the help of her company, I'm very excited to get these early books out there and into reader's hands again!

Black Thorne's Rose is now available for Amazon Kindle, Barnes and Noble Nook, Kobo, iBook, and several other venues, with more options appearing all the time. And I'm happy to announce that my second historical romance, The Raven's Wish, will Raven be available very soon. Raven's Wish was my first Scottish-set historical. Here's a sneak preview of the cover!

Susan has a new Facebook author page – click here to see Susan's page, and be sure to "like" it!  

 

How many of you are eager to see the return of medievals? Raise your hand! Have any of you been straying from historical romance lately? Do you have any idea why?

 

Update! Nina has offered to give three Amazon gift versions of BLACK THORNE'S ROSE to random commenters. These versions can be read on your computer as well as other devices. I'll call the cut-off time as midnight Thursday, April 28th. Drop a line and say hi and you may be a winner!

140 thoughts on “Wench Susan’s New Venture”

  1. I am looking forward to seeing more medieval historical romances! I know that the time period was probably nothing like what I think it is when I read (smellier, dirties) but there is just something about medieval times that draws me in – the whole chivalry thing. I haven’t been straying from historical romances at all lately – I can’t seem to get enough of them – but I will admit that I am pickier as to what I read/buy and tend to only read certain time periods/locations or if there is a really good review that piques my interest.

    Reply
  2. I am looking forward to seeing more medieval historical romances! I know that the time period was probably nothing like what I think it is when I read (smellier, dirties) but there is just something about medieval times that draws me in – the whole chivalry thing. I haven’t been straying from historical romances at all lately – I can’t seem to get enough of them – but I will admit that I am pickier as to what I read/buy and tend to only read certain time periods/locations or if there is a really good review that piques my interest.

    Reply
  3. I am looking forward to seeing more medieval historical romances! I know that the time period was probably nothing like what I think it is when I read (smellier, dirties) but there is just something about medieval times that draws me in – the whole chivalry thing. I haven’t been straying from historical romances at all lately – I can’t seem to get enough of them – but I will admit that I am pickier as to what I read/buy and tend to only read certain time periods/locations or if there is a really good review that piques my interest.

    Reply
  4. I am looking forward to seeing more medieval historical romances! I know that the time period was probably nothing like what I think it is when I read (smellier, dirties) but there is just something about medieval times that draws me in – the whole chivalry thing. I haven’t been straying from historical romances at all lately – I can’t seem to get enough of them – but I will admit that I am pickier as to what I read/buy and tend to only read certain time periods/locations or if there is a really good review that piques my interest.

    Reply
  5. I am looking forward to seeing more medieval historical romances! I know that the time period was probably nothing like what I think it is when I read (smellier, dirties) but there is just something about medieval times that draws me in – the whole chivalry thing. I haven’t been straying from historical romances at all lately – I can’t seem to get enough of them – but I will admit that I am pickier as to what I read/buy and tend to only read certain time periods/locations or if there is a really good review that piques my interest.

    Reply
  6. Since I adore Robin Hood tales, I think it’s the mystique of the forest medieval that calls to me. Glad to hear that you’re sticking with historicals. With so many available, one has to be picky!

    Reply
  7. Since I adore Robin Hood tales, I think it’s the mystique of the forest medieval that calls to me. Glad to hear that you’re sticking with historicals. With so many available, one has to be picky!

    Reply
  8. Since I adore Robin Hood tales, I think it’s the mystique of the forest medieval that calls to me. Glad to hear that you’re sticking with historicals. With so many available, one has to be picky!

    Reply
  9. Since I adore Robin Hood tales, I think it’s the mystique of the forest medieval that calls to me. Glad to hear that you’re sticking with historicals. With so many available, one has to be picky!

    Reply
  10. Since I adore Robin Hood tales, I think it’s the mystique of the forest medieval that calls to me. Glad to hear that you’re sticking with historicals. With so many available, one has to be picky!

    Reply
  11. Hi Prof Pat! Hi Wench Susan! Great blog. Beautiful covers. And thanks for the plug!
    As a reader, The Black Thorne’s Rose was new to me as I didn’t “do romance” when the print version came out. But I can speak for BTR in the Special Author’s Cut version. Its an intriguing roller-coaster ride, full of twists and turns and an HEA to die for. Well done Wench Susan. Could not put it down. Goodness, but I do love a good Robin Hood tale.
    On the publisher side, the number of Medieval and Scottish historical romances being put out there in eBook format is amazingly delicious. And by tell of the Starz new Camelot series (which I haven’t seen), and BBC’s Merlin Series (which I love!) it looks like the genre is here it stay. Hurray!

    Reply
  12. Hi Prof Pat! Hi Wench Susan! Great blog. Beautiful covers. And thanks for the plug!
    As a reader, The Black Thorne’s Rose was new to me as I didn’t “do romance” when the print version came out. But I can speak for BTR in the Special Author’s Cut version. Its an intriguing roller-coaster ride, full of twists and turns and an HEA to die for. Well done Wench Susan. Could not put it down. Goodness, but I do love a good Robin Hood tale.
    On the publisher side, the number of Medieval and Scottish historical romances being put out there in eBook format is amazingly delicious. And by tell of the Starz new Camelot series (which I haven’t seen), and BBC’s Merlin Series (which I love!) it looks like the genre is here it stay. Hurray!

    Reply
  13. Hi Prof Pat! Hi Wench Susan! Great blog. Beautiful covers. And thanks for the plug!
    As a reader, The Black Thorne’s Rose was new to me as I didn’t “do romance” when the print version came out. But I can speak for BTR in the Special Author’s Cut version. Its an intriguing roller-coaster ride, full of twists and turns and an HEA to die for. Well done Wench Susan. Could not put it down. Goodness, but I do love a good Robin Hood tale.
    On the publisher side, the number of Medieval and Scottish historical romances being put out there in eBook format is amazingly delicious. And by tell of the Starz new Camelot series (which I haven’t seen), and BBC’s Merlin Series (which I love!) it looks like the genre is here it stay. Hurray!

    Reply
  14. Hi Prof Pat! Hi Wench Susan! Great blog. Beautiful covers. And thanks for the plug!
    As a reader, The Black Thorne’s Rose was new to me as I didn’t “do romance” when the print version came out. But I can speak for BTR in the Special Author’s Cut version. Its an intriguing roller-coaster ride, full of twists and turns and an HEA to die for. Well done Wench Susan. Could not put it down. Goodness, but I do love a good Robin Hood tale.
    On the publisher side, the number of Medieval and Scottish historical romances being put out there in eBook format is amazingly delicious. And by tell of the Starz new Camelot series (which I haven’t seen), and BBC’s Merlin Series (which I love!) it looks like the genre is here it stay. Hurray!

    Reply
  15. Hi Prof Pat! Hi Wench Susan! Great blog. Beautiful covers. And thanks for the plug!
    As a reader, The Black Thorne’s Rose was new to me as I didn’t “do romance” when the print version came out. But I can speak for BTR in the Special Author’s Cut version. Its an intriguing roller-coaster ride, full of twists and turns and an HEA to die for. Well done Wench Susan. Could not put it down. Goodness, but I do love a good Robin Hood tale.
    On the publisher side, the number of Medieval and Scottish historical romances being put out there in eBook format is amazingly delicious. And by tell of the Starz new Camelot series (which I haven’t seen), and BBC’s Merlin Series (which I love!) it looks like the genre is here it stay. Hurray!

    Reply
  16. I love historical romantic adventure stories. I’ve always liked something going on besides the romance, and lately, most of the romances seem to be relationship stories only. I hope the adventures come back.
    I always read historicals. I don’t care for contemporaries. I want a break from real life.
    The cover is gorgeous. Did Nina’s company do the cover?

    Reply
  17. I love historical romantic adventure stories. I’ve always liked something going on besides the romance, and lately, most of the romances seem to be relationship stories only. I hope the adventures come back.
    I always read historicals. I don’t care for contemporaries. I want a break from real life.
    The cover is gorgeous. Did Nina’s company do the cover?

    Reply
  18. I love historical romantic adventure stories. I’ve always liked something going on besides the romance, and lately, most of the romances seem to be relationship stories only. I hope the adventures come back.
    I always read historicals. I don’t care for contemporaries. I want a break from real life.
    The cover is gorgeous. Did Nina’s company do the cover?

    Reply
  19. I love historical romantic adventure stories. I’ve always liked something going on besides the romance, and lately, most of the romances seem to be relationship stories only. I hope the adventures come back.
    I always read historicals. I don’t care for contemporaries. I want a break from real life.
    The cover is gorgeous. Did Nina’s company do the cover?

    Reply
  20. I love historical romantic adventure stories. I’ve always liked something going on besides the romance, and lately, most of the romances seem to be relationship stories only. I hope the adventures come back.
    I always read historicals. I don’t care for contemporaries. I want a break from real life.
    The cover is gorgeous. Did Nina’s company do the cover?

    Reply
  21. >>>the “author’s cut,” I call it — meaning that the author has cut, trimmed, edited and vastly improved the book<<<< This sounds so cool. Like going back an editing the past. I used to travel around the world a lot. Before I left to do this, we put huge amounts of household stuff in storage. Twenty years later, I came back to the US and pulled it all out. It was like getting Christmas presents from somebody eccentric, who knew you really well. Lots of wonderful things I'd forgotten all about. But sometimes I'd pick stuff up and go, "What was I thinking?

    Reply
  22. >>>the “author’s cut,” I call it — meaning that the author has cut, trimmed, edited and vastly improved the book<<<< This sounds so cool. Like going back an editing the past. I used to travel around the world a lot. Before I left to do this, we put huge amounts of household stuff in storage. Twenty years later, I came back to the US and pulled it all out. It was like getting Christmas presents from somebody eccentric, who knew you really well. Lots of wonderful things I'd forgotten all about. But sometimes I'd pick stuff up and go, "What was I thinking?

    Reply
  23. >>>the “author’s cut,” I call it — meaning that the author has cut, trimmed, edited and vastly improved the book<<<< This sounds so cool. Like going back an editing the past. I used to travel around the world a lot. Before I left to do this, we put huge amounts of household stuff in storage. Twenty years later, I came back to the US and pulled it all out. It was like getting Christmas presents from somebody eccentric, who knew you really well. Lots of wonderful things I'd forgotten all about. But sometimes I'd pick stuff up and go, "What was I thinking?

    Reply
  24. >>>the “author’s cut,” I call it — meaning that the author has cut, trimmed, edited and vastly improved the book<<<< This sounds so cool. Like going back an editing the past. I used to travel around the world a lot. Before I left to do this, we put huge amounts of household stuff in storage. Twenty years later, I came back to the US and pulled it all out. It was like getting Christmas presents from somebody eccentric, who knew you really well. Lots of wonderful things I'd forgotten all about. But sometimes I'd pick stuff up and go, "What was I thinking?

    Reply
  25. >>>the “author’s cut,” I call it — meaning that the author has cut, trimmed, edited and vastly improved the book<<<< This sounds so cool. Like going back an editing the past. I used to travel around the world a lot. Before I left to do this, we put huge amounts of household stuff in storage. Twenty years later, I came back to the US and pulled it all out. It was like getting Christmas presents from somebody eccentric, who knew you really well. Lots of wonderful things I'd forgotten all about. But sometimes I'd pick stuff up and go, "What was I thinking?

    Reply
  26. LOL, Joanna, that’s what I’ve been saying as I work my way through some of my old material. The stories are strong, but wow! I think computers may have actually improved my writing since I’m now able to edit better.
    Interesting point about the medievals, Nina! I would certainly like to see historicals painted on a broader canvas that we’ve been seeing lately.
    I believe Nina’s company produced the cover. Isn’t it gorgeous?

    Reply
  27. LOL, Joanna, that’s what I’ve been saying as I work my way through some of my old material. The stories are strong, but wow! I think computers may have actually improved my writing since I’m now able to edit better.
    Interesting point about the medievals, Nina! I would certainly like to see historicals painted on a broader canvas that we’ve been seeing lately.
    I believe Nina’s company produced the cover. Isn’t it gorgeous?

    Reply
  28. LOL, Joanna, that’s what I’ve been saying as I work my way through some of my old material. The stories are strong, but wow! I think computers may have actually improved my writing since I’m now able to edit better.
    Interesting point about the medievals, Nina! I would certainly like to see historicals painted on a broader canvas that we’ve been seeing lately.
    I believe Nina’s company produced the cover. Isn’t it gorgeous?

    Reply
  29. LOL, Joanna, that’s what I’ve been saying as I work my way through some of my old material. The stories are strong, but wow! I think computers may have actually improved my writing since I’m now able to edit better.
    Interesting point about the medievals, Nina! I would certainly like to see historicals painted on a broader canvas that we’ve been seeing lately.
    I believe Nina’s company produced the cover. Isn’t it gorgeous?

    Reply
  30. LOL, Joanna, that’s what I’ve been saying as I work my way through some of my old material. The stories are strong, but wow! I think computers may have actually improved my writing since I’m now able to edit better.
    Interesting point about the medievals, Nina! I would certainly like to see historicals painted on a broader canvas that we’ve been seeing lately.
    I believe Nina’s company produced the cover. Isn’t it gorgeous?

    Reply
  31. Joanna — love the eccentric Christmas gift perspective. How fun! And with so much coming back in style so quickly, the re-decoration possibilities are endless.

    Reply
  32. Joanna — love the eccentric Christmas gift perspective. How fun! And with so much coming back in style so quickly, the re-decoration possibilities are endless.

    Reply
  33. Joanna — love the eccentric Christmas gift perspective. How fun! And with so much coming back in style so quickly, the re-decoration possibilities are endless.

    Reply
  34. Joanna — love the eccentric Christmas gift perspective. How fun! And with so much coming back in style so quickly, the re-decoration possibilities are endless.

    Reply
  35. Joanna — love the eccentric Christmas gift perspective. How fun! And with so much coming back in style so quickly, the re-decoration possibilities are endless.

    Reply
  36. Joanna sez …
    >>Lots of wonderful things I’d forgotten all about. But sometimes I’d pick stuff up and go, “What was I thinking?”
    LOL, that’s what editing the book was like… nice to be able to clean up some of those early-enthusiastic-writer touches. Luckily I found that the stories are solid and I still adore the characters. Just a few too many words in those early books!
    Susan

    Reply
  37. Joanna sez …
    >>Lots of wonderful things I’d forgotten all about. But sometimes I’d pick stuff up and go, “What was I thinking?”
    LOL, that’s what editing the book was like… nice to be able to clean up some of those early-enthusiastic-writer touches. Luckily I found that the stories are solid and I still adore the characters. Just a few too many words in those early books!
    Susan

    Reply
  38. Joanna sez …
    >>Lots of wonderful things I’d forgotten all about. But sometimes I’d pick stuff up and go, “What was I thinking?”
    LOL, that’s what editing the book was like… nice to be able to clean up some of those early-enthusiastic-writer touches. Luckily I found that the stories are solid and I still adore the characters. Just a few too many words in those early books!
    Susan

    Reply
  39. Joanna sez …
    >>Lots of wonderful things I’d forgotten all about. But sometimes I’d pick stuff up and go, “What was I thinking?”
    LOL, that’s what editing the book was like… nice to be able to clean up some of those early-enthusiastic-writer touches. Luckily I found that the stories are solid and I still adore the characters. Just a few too many words in those early books!
    Susan

    Reply
  40. Joanna sez …
    >>Lots of wonderful things I’d forgotten all about. But sometimes I’d pick stuff up and go, “What was I thinking?”
    LOL, that’s what editing the book was like… nice to be able to clean up some of those early-enthusiastic-writer touches. Luckily I found that the stories are solid and I still adore the characters. Just a few too many words in those early books!
    Susan

    Reply
  41. I love medieval stories and always have and would love to see more of them, as for straying from historicals I do now read all the romance genres there are just so many great stories out there although for many years historicals were all that I read and they will always be my favourite of the genres.
    Have Fun
    Helen

    Reply
  42. I love medieval stories and always have and would love to see more of them, as for straying from historicals I do now read all the romance genres there are just so many great stories out there although for many years historicals were all that I read and they will always be my favourite of the genres.
    Have Fun
    Helen

    Reply
  43. I love medieval stories and always have and would love to see more of them, as for straying from historicals I do now read all the romance genres there are just so many great stories out there although for many years historicals were all that I read and they will always be my favourite of the genres.
    Have Fun
    Helen

    Reply
  44. I love medieval stories and always have and would love to see more of them, as for straying from historicals I do now read all the romance genres there are just so many great stories out there although for many years historicals were all that I read and they will always be my favourite of the genres.
    Have Fun
    Helen

    Reply
  45. I love medieval stories and always have and would love to see more of them, as for straying from historicals I do now read all the romance genres there are just so many great stories out there although for many years historicals were all that I read and they will always be my favourite of the genres.
    Have Fun
    Helen

    Reply
  46. I’m a long time fan of the midieval romance (I blame fairy tales about knights on white horses during my impressionable youth 😉 It’s nice to see them still being release regularly as I enjoy switching btween them and regencies. But sometimes, a good about knights, maidens & castles is the only one that appeals.

    Reply
  47. I’m a long time fan of the midieval romance (I blame fairy tales about knights on white horses during my impressionable youth 😉 It’s nice to see them still being release regularly as I enjoy switching btween them and regencies. But sometimes, a good about knights, maidens & castles is the only one that appeals.

    Reply
  48. I’m a long time fan of the midieval romance (I blame fairy tales about knights on white horses during my impressionable youth 😉 It’s nice to see them still being release regularly as I enjoy switching btween them and regencies. But sometimes, a good about knights, maidens & castles is the only one that appeals.

    Reply
  49. I’m a long time fan of the midieval romance (I blame fairy tales about knights on white horses during my impressionable youth 😉 It’s nice to see them still being release regularly as I enjoy switching btween them and regencies. But sometimes, a good about knights, maidens & castles is the only one that appeals.

    Reply
  50. I’m a long time fan of the midieval romance (I blame fairy tales about knights on white horses during my impressionable youth 😉 It’s nice to see them still being release regularly as I enjoy switching btween them and regencies. But sometimes, a good about knights, maidens & castles is the only one that appeals.

    Reply
  51. I never had much chance to read fairy tales when I was young, although I dearly wanted to. So maybe that was an influence on wanting to read about ladies locked in castle towers! But I think it was the research for my one medieval that finished me off on writing them. “G”

    Reply
  52. I never had much chance to read fairy tales when I was young, although I dearly wanted to. So maybe that was an influence on wanting to read about ladies locked in castle towers! But I think it was the research for my one medieval that finished me off on writing them. “G”

    Reply
  53. I never had much chance to read fairy tales when I was young, although I dearly wanted to. So maybe that was an influence on wanting to read about ladies locked in castle towers! But I think it was the research for my one medieval that finished me off on writing them. “G”

    Reply
  54. I never had much chance to read fairy tales when I was young, although I dearly wanted to. So maybe that was an influence on wanting to read about ladies locked in castle towers! But I think it was the research for my one medieval that finished me off on writing them. “G”

    Reply
  55. I never had much chance to read fairy tales when I was young, although I dearly wanted to. So maybe that was an influence on wanting to read about ladies locked in castle towers! But I think it was the research for my one medieval that finished me off on writing them. “G”

    Reply
  56. I’ve read EVERYTHING I can get my hands on, Susan! Thanks for creating and crafting such wonderful books. Am happy for the chance to read the updated version(s!)

    Reply
  57. I’ve read EVERYTHING I can get my hands on, Susan! Thanks for creating and crafting such wonderful books. Am happy for the chance to read the updated version(s!)

    Reply
  58. I’ve read EVERYTHING I can get my hands on, Susan! Thanks for creating and crafting such wonderful books. Am happy for the chance to read the updated version(s!)

    Reply
  59. I’ve read EVERYTHING I can get my hands on, Susan! Thanks for creating and crafting such wonderful books. Am happy for the chance to read the updated version(s!)

    Reply
  60. I’ve read EVERYTHING I can get my hands on, Susan! Thanks for creating and crafting such wonderful books. Am happy for the chance to read the updated version(s!)

    Reply
  61. Thank you for your post, Susan. Your information about e-publishing is most helpful. Among its important advantages is the fact that it brings out-of-print material back into print—if I can use the word “print” in this context!
    What’s more, it allows for “author’s cuts”. Though that might be a double-edged sword. Does this mean an author is never finished with revisions?
    About medieval romances—well, I don’t just love to read them. I love to write them!
    But I rarely read them because it’s hard to find those that focus on aspects of romance during the Middle Ages that interest me, namely courtly love and chivalry. These give romance in this era its special flavor. That, and tragedy, more often than not. Of course, romance editors don’t allow that. So I can hope to find only the first two aspects.
    But I rarely can. Most historicals set in the Middle Ages follow the same themes as those set in any period. Lord Alpha-Male and Lady Feisty are forced into a loveless marriage of convenience. Or he kidnaps her. Or both.
    They’re locked in an intimate power struggle, fighting when they’re not having sex. Terrific sex, of course, against all logic. Though he’s more powerful than she is, she always wins. She tames this unruly super-male, and the inevitable HEA follows.
    I can’t deny that this sort of romance is the most popular kind. But it’s not my idea of romance. And it has absolutely nothing to do with courtly love and chivalry.
    On the other hand, readers who dig power-fantasy romances, in any setting, no doubt believe these ARE real romances. And they’ve got the sale figures to back up their argument.
    If there’s a trend toward medieval romances in the immediate future, and I certainly hope there will be, it would do the market good and serve the readers better if we see more diversity. No doubt readers who go for romances that revolve around the usual premises will keep getting them.
    But those of us who have a different vision of romance, who want to read about the power of love rather than power fantasies, who prefer heroes and heroines who are readily able to give love and receive it, who fight obstacles to their love rather than each other—I think we should have a niche in the market. And what more suitable place to start than in medieval romances?
    Good luck with your e-publishing!

    Reply
  62. Thank you for your post, Susan. Your information about e-publishing is most helpful. Among its important advantages is the fact that it brings out-of-print material back into print—if I can use the word “print” in this context!
    What’s more, it allows for “author’s cuts”. Though that might be a double-edged sword. Does this mean an author is never finished with revisions?
    About medieval romances—well, I don’t just love to read them. I love to write them!
    But I rarely read them because it’s hard to find those that focus on aspects of romance during the Middle Ages that interest me, namely courtly love and chivalry. These give romance in this era its special flavor. That, and tragedy, more often than not. Of course, romance editors don’t allow that. So I can hope to find only the first two aspects.
    But I rarely can. Most historicals set in the Middle Ages follow the same themes as those set in any period. Lord Alpha-Male and Lady Feisty are forced into a loveless marriage of convenience. Or he kidnaps her. Or both.
    They’re locked in an intimate power struggle, fighting when they’re not having sex. Terrific sex, of course, against all logic. Though he’s more powerful than she is, she always wins. She tames this unruly super-male, and the inevitable HEA follows.
    I can’t deny that this sort of romance is the most popular kind. But it’s not my idea of romance. And it has absolutely nothing to do with courtly love and chivalry.
    On the other hand, readers who dig power-fantasy romances, in any setting, no doubt believe these ARE real romances. And they’ve got the sale figures to back up their argument.
    If there’s a trend toward medieval romances in the immediate future, and I certainly hope there will be, it would do the market good and serve the readers better if we see more diversity. No doubt readers who go for romances that revolve around the usual premises will keep getting them.
    But those of us who have a different vision of romance, who want to read about the power of love rather than power fantasies, who prefer heroes and heroines who are readily able to give love and receive it, who fight obstacles to their love rather than each other—I think we should have a niche in the market. And what more suitable place to start than in medieval romances?
    Good luck with your e-publishing!

    Reply
  63. Thank you for your post, Susan. Your information about e-publishing is most helpful. Among its important advantages is the fact that it brings out-of-print material back into print—if I can use the word “print” in this context!
    What’s more, it allows for “author’s cuts”. Though that might be a double-edged sword. Does this mean an author is never finished with revisions?
    About medieval romances—well, I don’t just love to read them. I love to write them!
    But I rarely read them because it’s hard to find those that focus on aspects of romance during the Middle Ages that interest me, namely courtly love and chivalry. These give romance in this era its special flavor. That, and tragedy, more often than not. Of course, romance editors don’t allow that. So I can hope to find only the first two aspects.
    But I rarely can. Most historicals set in the Middle Ages follow the same themes as those set in any period. Lord Alpha-Male and Lady Feisty are forced into a loveless marriage of convenience. Or he kidnaps her. Or both.
    They’re locked in an intimate power struggle, fighting when they’re not having sex. Terrific sex, of course, against all logic. Though he’s more powerful than she is, she always wins. She tames this unruly super-male, and the inevitable HEA follows.
    I can’t deny that this sort of romance is the most popular kind. But it’s not my idea of romance. And it has absolutely nothing to do with courtly love and chivalry.
    On the other hand, readers who dig power-fantasy romances, in any setting, no doubt believe these ARE real romances. And they’ve got the sale figures to back up their argument.
    If there’s a trend toward medieval romances in the immediate future, and I certainly hope there will be, it would do the market good and serve the readers better if we see more diversity. No doubt readers who go for romances that revolve around the usual premises will keep getting them.
    But those of us who have a different vision of romance, who want to read about the power of love rather than power fantasies, who prefer heroes and heroines who are readily able to give love and receive it, who fight obstacles to their love rather than each other—I think we should have a niche in the market. And what more suitable place to start than in medieval romances?
    Good luck with your e-publishing!

    Reply
  64. Thank you for your post, Susan. Your information about e-publishing is most helpful. Among its important advantages is the fact that it brings out-of-print material back into print—if I can use the word “print” in this context!
    What’s more, it allows for “author’s cuts”. Though that might be a double-edged sword. Does this mean an author is never finished with revisions?
    About medieval romances—well, I don’t just love to read them. I love to write them!
    But I rarely read them because it’s hard to find those that focus on aspects of romance during the Middle Ages that interest me, namely courtly love and chivalry. These give romance in this era its special flavor. That, and tragedy, more often than not. Of course, romance editors don’t allow that. So I can hope to find only the first two aspects.
    But I rarely can. Most historicals set in the Middle Ages follow the same themes as those set in any period. Lord Alpha-Male and Lady Feisty are forced into a loveless marriage of convenience. Or he kidnaps her. Or both.
    They’re locked in an intimate power struggle, fighting when they’re not having sex. Terrific sex, of course, against all logic. Though he’s more powerful than she is, she always wins. She tames this unruly super-male, and the inevitable HEA follows.
    I can’t deny that this sort of romance is the most popular kind. But it’s not my idea of romance. And it has absolutely nothing to do with courtly love and chivalry.
    On the other hand, readers who dig power-fantasy romances, in any setting, no doubt believe these ARE real romances. And they’ve got the sale figures to back up their argument.
    If there’s a trend toward medieval romances in the immediate future, and I certainly hope there will be, it would do the market good and serve the readers better if we see more diversity. No doubt readers who go for romances that revolve around the usual premises will keep getting them.
    But those of us who have a different vision of romance, who want to read about the power of love rather than power fantasies, who prefer heroes and heroines who are readily able to give love and receive it, who fight obstacles to their love rather than each other—I think we should have a niche in the market. And what more suitable place to start than in medieval romances?
    Good luck with your e-publishing!

    Reply
  65. Thank you for your post, Susan. Your information about e-publishing is most helpful. Among its important advantages is the fact that it brings out-of-print material back into print—if I can use the word “print” in this context!
    What’s more, it allows for “author’s cuts”. Though that might be a double-edged sword. Does this mean an author is never finished with revisions?
    About medieval romances—well, I don’t just love to read them. I love to write them!
    But I rarely read them because it’s hard to find those that focus on aspects of romance during the Middle Ages that interest me, namely courtly love and chivalry. These give romance in this era its special flavor. That, and tragedy, more often than not. Of course, romance editors don’t allow that. So I can hope to find only the first two aspects.
    But I rarely can. Most historicals set in the Middle Ages follow the same themes as those set in any period. Lord Alpha-Male and Lady Feisty are forced into a loveless marriage of convenience. Or he kidnaps her. Or both.
    They’re locked in an intimate power struggle, fighting when they’re not having sex. Terrific sex, of course, against all logic. Though he’s more powerful than she is, she always wins. She tames this unruly super-male, and the inevitable HEA follows.
    I can’t deny that this sort of romance is the most popular kind. But it’s not my idea of romance. And it has absolutely nothing to do with courtly love and chivalry.
    On the other hand, readers who dig power-fantasy romances, in any setting, no doubt believe these ARE real romances. And they’ve got the sale figures to back up their argument.
    If there’s a trend toward medieval romances in the immediate future, and I certainly hope there will be, it would do the market good and serve the readers better if we see more diversity. No doubt readers who go for romances that revolve around the usual premises will keep getting them.
    But those of us who have a different vision of romance, who want to read about the power of love rather than power fantasies, who prefer heroes and heroines who are readily able to give love and receive it, who fight obstacles to their love rather than each other—I think we should have a niche in the market. And what more suitable place to start than in medieval romances?
    Good luck with your e-publishing!

    Reply
  66. Ah, Mary Anne, you’re a woman after my own heart. I don’t much care for those powerful, obnoxious, alpha males who are so popular. I can’t stand a “hero” who treats his lady like dirt, but it’s OK because he “loves” her (I don’t believe it) and the sex is great.
    Conflict between the hero and heroine is one thing, but a power struggle is a different matter. Is this so popular because some women find power an aphrodisiac? Like most of the heroes are filthy rich because money is also an aphrodisiac? Neither floats my boat. I want my hero and heroine to be equal partners, who fight for something together and walk into the sunset together, not with one following the other.

    Reply
  67. Ah, Mary Anne, you’re a woman after my own heart. I don’t much care for those powerful, obnoxious, alpha males who are so popular. I can’t stand a “hero” who treats his lady like dirt, but it’s OK because he “loves” her (I don’t believe it) and the sex is great.
    Conflict between the hero and heroine is one thing, but a power struggle is a different matter. Is this so popular because some women find power an aphrodisiac? Like most of the heroes are filthy rich because money is also an aphrodisiac? Neither floats my boat. I want my hero and heroine to be equal partners, who fight for something together and walk into the sunset together, not with one following the other.

    Reply
  68. Ah, Mary Anne, you’re a woman after my own heart. I don’t much care for those powerful, obnoxious, alpha males who are so popular. I can’t stand a “hero” who treats his lady like dirt, but it’s OK because he “loves” her (I don’t believe it) and the sex is great.
    Conflict between the hero and heroine is one thing, but a power struggle is a different matter. Is this so popular because some women find power an aphrodisiac? Like most of the heroes are filthy rich because money is also an aphrodisiac? Neither floats my boat. I want my hero and heroine to be equal partners, who fight for something together and walk into the sunset together, not with one following the other.

    Reply
  69. Ah, Mary Anne, you’re a woman after my own heart. I don’t much care for those powerful, obnoxious, alpha males who are so popular. I can’t stand a “hero” who treats his lady like dirt, but it’s OK because he “loves” her (I don’t believe it) and the sex is great.
    Conflict between the hero and heroine is one thing, but a power struggle is a different matter. Is this so popular because some women find power an aphrodisiac? Like most of the heroes are filthy rich because money is also an aphrodisiac? Neither floats my boat. I want my hero and heroine to be equal partners, who fight for something together and walk into the sunset together, not with one following the other.

    Reply
  70. Ah, Mary Anne, you’re a woman after my own heart. I don’t much care for those powerful, obnoxious, alpha males who are so popular. I can’t stand a “hero” who treats his lady like dirt, but it’s OK because he “loves” her (I don’t believe it) and the sex is great.
    Conflict between the hero and heroine is one thing, but a power struggle is a different matter. Is this so popular because some women find power an aphrodisiac? Like most of the heroes are filthy rich because money is also an aphrodisiac? Neither floats my boat. I want my hero and heroine to be equal partners, who fight for something together and walk into the sunset together, not with one following the other.

    Reply
  71. I am excited to hear about another author bringing back her older novels in ebook form. I never tire of historical romances, but it is difficult to find titles that are on my favorite authors’ backlists since many are out of print. Thank you and I will be looking forward to reading this book.

    Reply
  72. I am excited to hear about another author bringing back her older novels in ebook form. I never tire of historical romances, but it is difficult to find titles that are on my favorite authors’ backlists since many are out of print. Thank you and I will be looking forward to reading this book.

    Reply
  73. I am excited to hear about another author bringing back her older novels in ebook form. I never tire of historical romances, but it is difficult to find titles that are on my favorite authors’ backlists since many are out of print. Thank you and I will be looking forward to reading this book.

    Reply
  74. I am excited to hear about another author bringing back her older novels in ebook form. I never tire of historical romances, but it is difficult to find titles that are on my favorite authors’ backlists since many are out of print. Thank you and I will be looking forward to reading this book.

    Reply
  75. I am excited to hear about another author bringing back her older novels in ebook form. I never tire of historical romances, but it is difficult to find titles that are on my favorite authors’ backlists since many are out of print. Thank you and I will be looking forward to reading this book.

    Reply
  76. Mary Anne… you’ve made some excellent points here. Courtly love and chivalry are more about discipline and inner strength than releasing the “hounds”. 🙂
    I do hope that, in time, epublishing can bring back true romance. We sure could use it in this world where a young man would rather stare a co-ed’s arse than help her on with her coat. Of course, the poor fellow has been conditioned that the later is less than acceptable (if not unwelcomed), while the former is basic instinct.
    I am a firm believer that fiction writers (romance, especially) are in a unique position to change that – perhaps not the boy, but certainly the girl, who will then then teach the boy. 🙂

    Reply
  77. Mary Anne… you’ve made some excellent points here. Courtly love and chivalry are more about discipline and inner strength than releasing the “hounds”. 🙂
    I do hope that, in time, epublishing can bring back true romance. We sure could use it in this world where a young man would rather stare a co-ed’s arse than help her on with her coat. Of course, the poor fellow has been conditioned that the later is less than acceptable (if not unwelcomed), while the former is basic instinct.
    I am a firm believer that fiction writers (romance, especially) are in a unique position to change that – perhaps not the boy, but certainly the girl, who will then then teach the boy. 🙂

    Reply
  78. Mary Anne… you’ve made some excellent points here. Courtly love and chivalry are more about discipline and inner strength than releasing the “hounds”. 🙂
    I do hope that, in time, epublishing can bring back true romance. We sure could use it in this world where a young man would rather stare a co-ed’s arse than help her on with her coat. Of course, the poor fellow has been conditioned that the later is less than acceptable (if not unwelcomed), while the former is basic instinct.
    I am a firm believer that fiction writers (romance, especially) are in a unique position to change that – perhaps not the boy, but certainly the girl, who will then then teach the boy. 🙂

    Reply
  79. Mary Anne… you’ve made some excellent points here. Courtly love and chivalry are more about discipline and inner strength than releasing the “hounds”. 🙂
    I do hope that, in time, epublishing can bring back true romance. We sure could use it in this world where a young man would rather stare a co-ed’s arse than help her on with her coat. Of course, the poor fellow has been conditioned that the later is less than acceptable (if not unwelcomed), while the former is basic instinct.
    I am a firm believer that fiction writers (romance, especially) are in a unique position to change that – perhaps not the boy, but certainly the girl, who will then then teach the boy. 🙂

    Reply
  80. Mary Anne… you’ve made some excellent points here. Courtly love and chivalry are more about discipline and inner strength than releasing the “hounds”. 🙂
    I do hope that, in time, epublishing can bring back true romance. We sure could use it in this world where a young man would rather stare a co-ed’s arse than help her on with her coat. Of course, the poor fellow has been conditioned that the later is less than acceptable (if not unwelcomed), while the former is basic instinct.
    I am a firm believer that fiction writers (romance, especially) are in a unique position to change that – perhaps not the boy, but certainly the girl, who will then then teach the boy. 🙂

    Reply
  81. Very interesting insights. I hadn’t thought about medievals being about the powerful alpha males, but I suppose in that particular society, men did have all the power, and I mean ALL the power. Women were limited to what they could do around the house, although an intelligent woman can do a lot with that. Interesting. So perhaps that’s part of the romance affinity for Regency, because women had a lot of control in the courting relationship. Good points!

    Reply
  82. Very interesting insights. I hadn’t thought about medievals being about the powerful alpha males, but I suppose in that particular society, men did have all the power, and I mean ALL the power. Women were limited to what they could do around the house, although an intelligent woman can do a lot with that. Interesting. So perhaps that’s part of the romance affinity for Regency, because women had a lot of control in the courting relationship. Good points!

    Reply
  83. Very interesting insights. I hadn’t thought about medievals being about the powerful alpha males, but I suppose in that particular society, men did have all the power, and I mean ALL the power. Women were limited to what they could do around the house, although an intelligent woman can do a lot with that. Interesting. So perhaps that’s part of the romance affinity for Regency, because women had a lot of control in the courting relationship. Good points!

    Reply
  84. Very interesting insights. I hadn’t thought about medievals being about the powerful alpha males, but I suppose in that particular society, men did have all the power, and I mean ALL the power. Women were limited to what they could do around the house, although an intelligent woman can do a lot with that. Interesting. So perhaps that’s part of the romance affinity for Regency, because women had a lot of control in the courting relationship. Good points!

    Reply
  85. Very interesting insights. I hadn’t thought about medievals being about the powerful alpha males, but I suppose in that particular society, men did have all the power, and I mean ALL the power. Women were limited to what they could do around the house, although an intelligent woman can do a lot with that. Interesting. So perhaps that’s part of the romance affinity for Regency, because women had a lot of control in the courting relationship. Good points!

    Reply
  86. Interesting discussion! Having written many medievals, romance and otherwise (along with other time periods) I’m proud to say I’ve never written an alpha male hero in any of my stories. In fact, the alphas are usually the baddies… 😉
    I don’t think the “alpha” personality is a necessary part of the territory in medieval-set fiction. I’m not fond of alphas and I don’t write them, and yet I think my heroes are very true to their various eras and settings – and heroines as well – and I’m always careful to set characters as convincingly as I can within their time frame. There were plenty of men in the medieval centuries who would qualify as “beta” or more balanced male personalities, and there were plenty of legitimately feisty women. Part of the fun of writing medievals, I think, is finding models in history with these more sympathetic qualities, and wrapping them into fictional characters that appeal to the modern reader and yet still come across as medieval people.
    Black THorne’s Rose was my first romance, first medieval, and I’m proud to say – nary an Alpha in it! Well, ok, the bad guy . . .
    Susan 🙂

    Reply
  87. Interesting discussion! Having written many medievals, romance and otherwise (along with other time periods) I’m proud to say I’ve never written an alpha male hero in any of my stories. In fact, the alphas are usually the baddies… 😉
    I don’t think the “alpha” personality is a necessary part of the territory in medieval-set fiction. I’m not fond of alphas and I don’t write them, and yet I think my heroes are very true to their various eras and settings – and heroines as well – and I’m always careful to set characters as convincingly as I can within their time frame. There were plenty of men in the medieval centuries who would qualify as “beta” or more balanced male personalities, and there were plenty of legitimately feisty women. Part of the fun of writing medievals, I think, is finding models in history with these more sympathetic qualities, and wrapping them into fictional characters that appeal to the modern reader and yet still come across as medieval people.
    Black THorne’s Rose was my first romance, first medieval, and I’m proud to say – nary an Alpha in it! Well, ok, the bad guy . . .
    Susan 🙂

    Reply
  88. Interesting discussion! Having written many medievals, romance and otherwise (along with other time periods) I’m proud to say I’ve never written an alpha male hero in any of my stories. In fact, the alphas are usually the baddies… 😉
    I don’t think the “alpha” personality is a necessary part of the territory in medieval-set fiction. I’m not fond of alphas and I don’t write them, and yet I think my heroes are very true to their various eras and settings – and heroines as well – and I’m always careful to set characters as convincingly as I can within their time frame. There were plenty of men in the medieval centuries who would qualify as “beta” or more balanced male personalities, and there were plenty of legitimately feisty women. Part of the fun of writing medievals, I think, is finding models in history with these more sympathetic qualities, and wrapping them into fictional characters that appeal to the modern reader and yet still come across as medieval people.
    Black THorne’s Rose was my first romance, first medieval, and I’m proud to say – nary an Alpha in it! Well, ok, the bad guy . . .
    Susan 🙂

    Reply
  89. Interesting discussion! Having written many medievals, romance and otherwise (along with other time periods) I’m proud to say I’ve never written an alpha male hero in any of my stories. In fact, the alphas are usually the baddies… 😉
    I don’t think the “alpha” personality is a necessary part of the territory in medieval-set fiction. I’m not fond of alphas and I don’t write them, and yet I think my heroes are very true to their various eras and settings – and heroines as well – and I’m always careful to set characters as convincingly as I can within their time frame. There were plenty of men in the medieval centuries who would qualify as “beta” or more balanced male personalities, and there were plenty of legitimately feisty women. Part of the fun of writing medievals, I think, is finding models in history with these more sympathetic qualities, and wrapping them into fictional characters that appeal to the modern reader and yet still come across as medieval people.
    Black THorne’s Rose was my first romance, first medieval, and I’m proud to say – nary an Alpha in it! Well, ok, the bad guy . . .
    Susan 🙂

    Reply
  90. Interesting discussion! Having written many medievals, romance and otherwise (along with other time periods) I’m proud to say I’ve never written an alpha male hero in any of my stories. In fact, the alphas are usually the baddies… 😉
    I don’t think the “alpha” personality is a necessary part of the territory in medieval-set fiction. I’m not fond of alphas and I don’t write them, and yet I think my heroes are very true to their various eras and settings – and heroines as well – and I’m always careful to set characters as convincingly as I can within their time frame. There were plenty of men in the medieval centuries who would qualify as “beta” or more balanced male personalities, and there were plenty of legitimately feisty women. Part of the fun of writing medievals, I think, is finding models in history with these more sympathetic qualities, and wrapping them into fictional characters that appeal to the modern reader and yet still come across as medieval people.
    Black THorne’s Rose was my first romance, first medieval, and I’m proud to say – nary an Alpha in it! Well, ok, the bad guy . . .
    Susan 🙂

    Reply
  91. Susan, I read your Sarah Gabriel books, and one of the best things about them were the heroes. They are all decent men. They’re strong, they’re capable, they’re devastatingly attractive, but they’re also nice. Now, I maintain “nice guy” does not automatically equate to “wimp”. Your heroes are nice guys, but they’re certainly not wimps.

    Reply
  92. Susan, I read your Sarah Gabriel books, and one of the best things about them were the heroes. They are all decent men. They’re strong, they’re capable, they’re devastatingly attractive, but they’re also nice. Now, I maintain “nice guy” does not automatically equate to “wimp”. Your heroes are nice guys, but they’re certainly not wimps.

    Reply
  93. Susan, I read your Sarah Gabriel books, and one of the best things about them were the heroes. They are all decent men. They’re strong, they’re capable, they’re devastatingly attractive, but they’re also nice. Now, I maintain “nice guy” does not automatically equate to “wimp”. Your heroes are nice guys, but they’re certainly not wimps.

    Reply
  94. Susan, I read your Sarah Gabriel books, and one of the best things about them were the heroes. They are all decent men. They’re strong, they’re capable, they’re devastatingly attractive, but they’re also nice. Now, I maintain “nice guy” does not automatically equate to “wimp”. Your heroes are nice guys, but they’re certainly not wimps.

    Reply
  95. Susan, I read your Sarah Gabriel books, and one of the best things about them were the heroes. They are all decent men. They’re strong, they’re capable, they’re devastatingly attractive, but they’re also nice. Now, I maintain “nice guy” does not automatically equate to “wimp”. Your heroes are nice guys, but they’re certainly not wimps.

    Reply
  96. Thanks, Linda! I’m very glad to know that you a) read the Sarah G. books and b) love the heroes! I like to think of them not just as “nice” guys — which does sound kinda wimpy! — but as good, kind, decent men on the inside with tantalizingly crusty exteriors. Mary Jo and I and another writer, Eileen Charbonneau, once gave a workshop where we dubbed this type the “warrior poet” or “M & M hero” — a guy who’s crusty and crunchy, i.e. a little difficult to break through, on the outside – and just heavenly yummy on the inside. Men who are caring, decent souls who have a need to hide how MUCH they care about something or someone, not only the heroine, but a cause, a child, something close to his crusty yet sensitive heart. Vulnerability and power – a great dynamic balance for a hero.
    The warrior poet description expresses the same sort of contrast, the yin/yang of warrior toughness and strength with inner strength and the innate capacity to love. Not all Alphas are convincingly capable of loving and caring, and for me, that’s an issue when writing a “strong” hero. Physical and social power are important aspects for a romance hero. I also love to weave into them a different, deeper kind of strength and substance — and those are also the kinds of heroes I love to read about in romance and fiction. I can get into those guys, I can understand those heroes.
    The heroes (or male protagonists, to be more of a “fictionist” about it) in my mainstream historicals also have these characteristics, and it’s not out of their medieval context at all. For example, the actual Macbeth was known, in his own time (not Shakespeare’s), to have overseen notable years of great peace and prosperity in Scotland, and he did some things that indicated traits beyond the plain ol’ Alpha medieval warrior – he never set his wife aside though she never gave him children; he left Scotland in her care when he went to Rome; and he entrusted his kingdom to her son (his stepson). And yes, he also pounded the daylights out of warriors and kings when it was needed. But a deeper, decent man probably existed in him, even in 11th c., as hinted by history.

    Reply
  97. Thanks, Linda! I’m very glad to know that you a) read the Sarah G. books and b) love the heroes! I like to think of them not just as “nice” guys — which does sound kinda wimpy! — but as good, kind, decent men on the inside with tantalizingly crusty exteriors. Mary Jo and I and another writer, Eileen Charbonneau, once gave a workshop where we dubbed this type the “warrior poet” or “M & M hero” — a guy who’s crusty and crunchy, i.e. a little difficult to break through, on the outside – and just heavenly yummy on the inside. Men who are caring, decent souls who have a need to hide how MUCH they care about something or someone, not only the heroine, but a cause, a child, something close to his crusty yet sensitive heart. Vulnerability and power – a great dynamic balance for a hero.
    The warrior poet description expresses the same sort of contrast, the yin/yang of warrior toughness and strength with inner strength and the innate capacity to love. Not all Alphas are convincingly capable of loving and caring, and for me, that’s an issue when writing a “strong” hero. Physical and social power are important aspects for a romance hero. I also love to weave into them a different, deeper kind of strength and substance — and those are also the kinds of heroes I love to read about in romance and fiction. I can get into those guys, I can understand those heroes.
    The heroes (or male protagonists, to be more of a “fictionist” about it) in my mainstream historicals also have these characteristics, and it’s not out of their medieval context at all. For example, the actual Macbeth was known, in his own time (not Shakespeare’s), to have overseen notable years of great peace and prosperity in Scotland, and he did some things that indicated traits beyond the plain ol’ Alpha medieval warrior – he never set his wife aside though she never gave him children; he left Scotland in her care when he went to Rome; and he entrusted his kingdom to her son (his stepson). And yes, he also pounded the daylights out of warriors and kings when it was needed. But a deeper, decent man probably existed in him, even in 11th c., as hinted by history.

    Reply
  98. Thanks, Linda! I’m very glad to know that you a) read the Sarah G. books and b) love the heroes! I like to think of them not just as “nice” guys — which does sound kinda wimpy! — but as good, kind, decent men on the inside with tantalizingly crusty exteriors. Mary Jo and I and another writer, Eileen Charbonneau, once gave a workshop where we dubbed this type the “warrior poet” or “M & M hero” — a guy who’s crusty and crunchy, i.e. a little difficult to break through, on the outside – and just heavenly yummy on the inside. Men who are caring, decent souls who have a need to hide how MUCH they care about something or someone, not only the heroine, but a cause, a child, something close to his crusty yet sensitive heart. Vulnerability and power – a great dynamic balance for a hero.
    The warrior poet description expresses the same sort of contrast, the yin/yang of warrior toughness and strength with inner strength and the innate capacity to love. Not all Alphas are convincingly capable of loving and caring, and for me, that’s an issue when writing a “strong” hero. Physical and social power are important aspects for a romance hero. I also love to weave into them a different, deeper kind of strength and substance — and those are also the kinds of heroes I love to read about in romance and fiction. I can get into those guys, I can understand those heroes.
    The heroes (or male protagonists, to be more of a “fictionist” about it) in my mainstream historicals also have these characteristics, and it’s not out of their medieval context at all. For example, the actual Macbeth was known, in his own time (not Shakespeare’s), to have overseen notable years of great peace and prosperity in Scotland, and he did some things that indicated traits beyond the plain ol’ Alpha medieval warrior – he never set his wife aside though she never gave him children; he left Scotland in her care when he went to Rome; and he entrusted his kingdom to her son (his stepson). And yes, he also pounded the daylights out of warriors and kings when it was needed. But a deeper, decent man probably existed in him, even in 11th c., as hinted by history.

    Reply
  99. Thanks, Linda! I’m very glad to know that you a) read the Sarah G. books and b) love the heroes! I like to think of them not just as “nice” guys — which does sound kinda wimpy! — but as good, kind, decent men on the inside with tantalizingly crusty exteriors. Mary Jo and I and another writer, Eileen Charbonneau, once gave a workshop where we dubbed this type the “warrior poet” or “M & M hero” — a guy who’s crusty and crunchy, i.e. a little difficult to break through, on the outside – and just heavenly yummy on the inside. Men who are caring, decent souls who have a need to hide how MUCH they care about something or someone, not only the heroine, but a cause, a child, something close to his crusty yet sensitive heart. Vulnerability and power – a great dynamic balance for a hero.
    The warrior poet description expresses the same sort of contrast, the yin/yang of warrior toughness and strength with inner strength and the innate capacity to love. Not all Alphas are convincingly capable of loving and caring, and for me, that’s an issue when writing a “strong” hero. Physical and social power are important aspects for a romance hero. I also love to weave into them a different, deeper kind of strength and substance — and those are also the kinds of heroes I love to read about in romance and fiction. I can get into those guys, I can understand those heroes.
    The heroes (or male protagonists, to be more of a “fictionist” about it) in my mainstream historicals also have these characteristics, and it’s not out of their medieval context at all. For example, the actual Macbeth was known, in his own time (not Shakespeare’s), to have overseen notable years of great peace and prosperity in Scotland, and he did some things that indicated traits beyond the plain ol’ Alpha medieval warrior – he never set his wife aside though she never gave him children; he left Scotland in her care when he went to Rome; and he entrusted his kingdom to her son (his stepson). And yes, he also pounded the daylights out of warriors and kings when it was needed. But a deeper, decent man probably existed in him, even in 11th c., as hinted by history.

    Reply
  100. Thanks, Linda! I’m very glad to know that you a) read the Sarah G. books and b) love the heroes! I like to think of them not just as “nice” guys — which does sound kinda wimpy! — but as good, kind, decent men on the inside with tantalizingly crusty exteriors. Mary Jo and I and another writer, Eileen Charbonneau, once gave a workshop where we dubbed this type the “warrior poet” or “M & M hero” — a guy who’s crusty and crunchy, i.e. a little difficult to break through, on the outside – and just heavenly yummy on the inside. Men who are caring, decent souls who have a need to hide how MUCH they care about something or someone, not only the heroine, but a cause, a child, something close to his crusty yet sensitive heart. Vulnerability and power – a great dynamic balance for a hero.
    The warrior poet description expresses the same sort of contrast, the yin/yang of warrior toughness and strength with inner strength and the innate capacity to love. Not all Alphas are convincingly capable of loving and caring, and for me, that’s an issue when writing a “strong” hero. Physical and social power are important aspects for a romance hero. I also love to weave into them a different, deeper kind of strength and substance — and those are also the kinds of heroes I love to read about in romance and fiction. I can get into those guys, I can understand those heroes.
    The heroes (or male protagonists, to be more of a “fictionist” about it) in my mainstream historicals also have these characteristics, and it’s not out of their medieval context at all. For example, the actual Macbeth was known, in his own time (not Shakespeare’s), to have overseen notable years of great peace and prosperity in Scotland, and he did some things that indicated traits beyond the plain ol’ Alpha medieval warrior – he never set his wife aside though she never gave him children; he left Scotland in her care when he went to Rome; and he entrusted his kingdom to her son (his stepson). And yes, he also pounded the daylights out of warriors and kings when it was needed. But a deeper, decent man probably existed in him, even in 11th c., as hinted by history.

    Reply
  101. I love medieval. I have a family’s story that is set in medieval Ireland. I love the setting and go to Grace’s “cottage” when this world becomes a little too much. Good luck with the ebook!

    Reply
  102. I love medieval. I have a family’s story that is set in medieval Ireland. I love the setting and go to Grace’s “cottage” when this world becomes a little too much. Good luck with the ebook!

    Reply
  103. I love medieval. I have a family’s story that is set in medieval Ireland. I love the setting and go to Grace’s “cottage” when this world becomes a little too much. Good luck with the ebook!

    Reply
  104. I love medieval. I have a family’s story that is set in medieval Ireland. I love the setting and go to Grace’s “cottage” when this world becomes a little too much. Good luck with the ebook!

    Reply
  105. I love medieval. I have a family’s story that is set in medieval Ireland. I love the setting and go to Grace’s “cottage” when this world becomes a little too much. Good luck with the ebook!

    Reply
  106. Susan I read The Black Thorne’s Rose when it was first released and it was one of the first historical romances that I read and the reason that they are my focus now. I’m so glad you are going to be re-releasing in ebook format! Our local bookstore closed but fortunately my husband bought me a Kindle for Christmas.
    When I first read the book I didn’t question how it was written and instead focused on how much I enjoyed the historical aspect. I don’t think that the “’tis twas, ’twere” contractions bothered me that much when I first read them because years ago in high school we had to read the Canterbury Tales in middle Englsih! Today after reading so many books of the historical genre I think that I’ll really enjoy the author’s cut version even more.
    Several years ago my husband and I visited England and Scotland and he was amazed at how much historical information I had learned from reading historical romance. We feel in love with some locations we wouldn’t have thought of visiting if it wasn’t for my “historical information reading.
    Did either you or Pat ever visit somewhere and know immediately that you had to write a story that was focused on that particular place or in that type of setting?

    Reply
  107. Susan I read The Black Thorne’s Rose when it was first released and it was one of the first historical romances that I read and the reason that they are my focus now. I’m so glad you are going to be re-releasing in ebook format! Our local bookstore closed but fortunately my husband bought me a Kindle for Christmas.
    When I first read the book I didn’t question how it was written and instead focused on how much I enjoyed the historical aspect. I don’t think that the “’tis twas, ’twere” contractions bothered me that much when I first read them because years ago in high school we had to read the Canterbury Tales in middle Englsih! Today after reading so many books of the historical genre I think that I’ll really enjoy the author’s cut version even more.
    Several years ago my husband and I visited England and Scotland and he was amazed at how much historical information I had learned from reading historical romance. We feel in love with some locations we wouldn’t have thought of visiting if it wasn’t for my “historical information reading.
    Did either you or Pat ever visit somewhere and know immediately that you had to write a story that was focused on that particular place or in that type of setting?

    Reply
  108. Susan I read The Black Thorne’s Rose when it was first released and it was one of the first historical romances that I read and the reason that they are my focus now. I’m so glad you are going to be re-releasing in ebook format! Our local bookstore closed but fortunately my husband bought me a Kindle for Christmas.
    When I first read the book I didn’t question how it was written and instead focused on how much I enjoyed the historical aspect. I don’t think that the “’tis twas, ’twere” contractions bothered me that much when I first read them because years ago in high school we had to read the Canterbury Tales in middle Englsih! Today after reading so many books of the historical genre I think that I’ll really enjoy the author’s cut version even more.
    Several years ago my husband and I visited England and Scotland and he was amazed at how much historical information I had learned from reading historical romance. We feel in love with some locations we wouldn’t have thought of visiting if it wasn’t for my “historical information reading.
    Did either you or Pat ever visit somewhere and know immediately that you had to write a story that was focused on that particular place or in that type of setting?

    Reply
  109. Susan I read The Black Thorne’s Rose when it was first released and it was one of the first historical romances that I read and the reason that they are my focus now. I’m so glad you are going to be re-releasing in ebook format! Our local bookstore closed but fortunately my husband bought me a Kindle for Christmas.
    When I first read the book I didn’t question how it was written and instead focused on how much I enjoyed the historical aspect. I don’t think that the “’tis twas, ’twere” contractions bothered me that much when I first read them because years ago in high school we had to read the Canterbury Tales in middle Englsih! Today after reading so many books of the historical genre I think that I’ll really enjoy the author’s cut version even more.
    Several years ago my husband and I visited England and Scotland and he was amazed at how much historical information I had learned from reading historical romance. We feel in love with some locations we wouldn’t have thought of visiting if it wasn’t for my “historical information reading.
    Did either you or Pat ever visit somewhere and know immediately that you had to write a story that was focused on that particular place or in that type of setting?

    Reply
  110. Susan I read The Black Thorne’s Rose when it was first released and it was one of the first historical romances that I read and the reason that they are my focus now. I’m so glad you are going to be re-releasing in ebook format! Our local bookstore closed but fortunately my husband bought me a Kindle for Christmas.
    When I first read the book I didn’t question how it was written and instead focused on how much I enjoyed the historical aspect. I don’t think that the “’tis twas, ’twere” contractions bothered me that much when I first read them because years ago in high school we had to read the Canterbury Tales in middle Englsih! Today after reading so many books of the historical genre I think that I’ll really enjoy the author’s cut version even more.
    Several years ago my husband and I visited England and Scotland and he was amazed at how much historical information I had learned from reading historical romance. We feel in love with some locations we wouldn’t have thought of visiting if it wasn’t for my “historical information reading.
    Did either you or Pat ever visit somewhere and know immediately that you had to write a story that was focused on that particular place or in that type of setting?

    Reply
  111. I like historicals…whatever the time period.
    I’ve downloaded “The Blackthorne’s Rose”.
    It’s at the top of my TBR pile.

    Reply
  112. I like historicals…whatever the time period.
    I’ve downloaded “The Blackthorne’s Rose”.
    It’s at the top of my TBR pile.

    Reply
  113. I like historicals…whatever the time period.
    I’ve downloaded “The Blackthorne’s Rose”.
    It’s at the top of my TBR pile.

    Reply
  114. I like historicals…whatever the time period.
    I’ve downloaded “The Blackthorne’s Rose”.
    It’s at the top of my TBR pile.

    Reply
  115. I like historicals…whatever the time period.
    I’ve downloaded “The Blackthorne’s Rose”.
    It’s at the top of my TBR pile.

    Reply
  116. Ah, the Warrior Poet talk! We tossed out tiny packets of M&Ms to the audience at the end. No wonder that talk was popular. *g* Even better were the magnificent Pre-Raphaelite paintings you found to illustrate the characteristics of the Warrior Poet.
    I’m SO glad these Susan King historicals are going to be available again! We can never have too many good books to read. *g*

    Reply
  117. Ah, the Warrior Poet talk! We tossed out tiny packets of M&Ms to the audience at the end. No wonder that talk was popular. *g* Even better were the magnificent Pre-Raphaelite paintings you found to illustrate the characteristics of the Warrior Poet.
    I’m SO glad these Susan King historicals are going to be available again! We can never have too many good books to read. *g*

    Reply
  118. Ah, the Warrior Poet talk! We tossed out tiny packets of M&Ms to the audience at the end. No wonder that talk was popular. *g* Even better were the magnificent Pre-Raphaelite paintings you found to illustrate the characteristics of the Warrior Poet.
    I’m SO glad these Susan King historicals are going to be available again! We can never have too many good books to read. *g*

    Reply
  119. Ah, the Warrior Poet talk! We tossed out tiny packets of M&Ms to the audience at the end. No wonder that talk was popular. *g* Even better were the magnificent Pre-Raphaelite paintings you found to illustrate the characteristics of the Warrior Poet.
    I’m SO glad these Susan King historicals are going to be available again! We can never have too many good books to read. *g*

    Reply
  120. Ah, the Warrior Poet talk! We tossed out tiny packets of M&Ms to the audience at the end. No wonder that talk was popular. *g* Even better were the magnificent Pre-Raphaelite paintings you found to illustrate the characteristics of the Warrior Poet.
    I’m SO glad these Susan King historicals are going to be available again! We can never have too many good books to read. *g*

    Reply
  121. Love the comments! Mary Jo, I forgot about the M&Ms we handed out – we had fun doing those warrior poet presentations!
    Louis, I hope you love the book. We Wenches know that you are definitely a warrior poet!
    And Jeanne, thank you SO much! Wow. That means a great deal to me.
    Mary Anne, the term “M&M hero” is something Mary Jo and Eileen and I came up with years ago to describe the heroes we write, and we’ve been referring to them that way for a while. If other writers get something out of it too, we’re happy.
    Susan

    Reply
  122. Love the comments! Mary Jo, I forgot about the M&Ms we handed out – we had fun doing those warrior poet presentations!
    Louis, I hope you love the book. We Wenches know that you are definitely a warrior poet!
    And Jeanne, thank you SO much! Wow. That means a great deal to me.
    Mary Anne, the term “M&M hero” is something Mary Jo and Eileen and I came up with years ago to describe the heroes we write, and we’ve been referring to them that way for a while. If other writers get something out of it too, we’re happy.
    Susan

    Reply
  123. Love the comments! Mary Jo, I forgot about the M&Ms we handed out – we had fun doing those warrior poet presentations!
    Louis, I hope you love the book. We Wenches know that you are definitely a warrior poet!
    And Jeanne, thank you SO much! Wow. That means a great deal to me.
    Mary Anne, the term “M&M hero” is something Mary Jo and Eileen and I came up with years ago to describe the heroes we write, and we’ve been referring to them that way for a while. If other writers get something out of it too, we’re happy.
    Susan

    Reply
  124. Love the comments! Mary Jo, I forgot about the M&Ms we handed out – we had fun doing those warrior poet presentations!
    Louis, I hope you love the book. We Wenches know that you are definitely a warrior poet!
    And Jeanne, thank you SO much! Wow. That means a great deal to me.
    Mary Anne, the term “M&M hero” is something Mary Jo and Eileen and I came up with years ago to describe the heroes we write, and we’ve been referring to them that way for a while. If other writers get something out of it too, we’re happy.
    Susan

    Reply
  125. Love the comments! Mary Jo, I forgot about the M&Ms we handed out – we had fun doing those warrior poet presentations!
    Louis, I hope you love the book. We Wenches know that you are definitely a warrior poet!
    And Jeanne, thank you SO much! Wow. That means a great deal to me.
    Mary Anne, the term “M&M hero” is something Mary Jo and Eileen and I came up with years ago to describe the heroes we write, and we’ve been referring to them that way for a while. If other writers get something out of it too, we’re happy.
    Susan

    Reply
  126. The book looks & sounds lovely but it looks like it’s not available from my fav bookstore (The BookDepository) 🙁
    Looks like my only chance is to win a copy here *grins*
    Keeping my fingers crossed…..

    Reply
  127. The book looks & sounds lovely but it looks like it’s not available from my fav bookstore (The BookDepository) 🙁
    Looks like my only chance is to win a copy here *grins*
    Keeping my fingers crossed…..

    Reply
  128. The book looks & sounds lovely but it looks like it’s not available from my fav bookstore (The BookDepository) 🙁
    Looks like my only chance is to win a copy here *grins*
    Keeping my fingers crossed…..

    Reply
  129. The book looks & sounds lovely but it looks like it’s not available from my fav bookstore (The BookDepository) 🙁
    Looks like my only chance is to win a copy here *grins*
    Keeping my fingers crossed…..

    Reply
  130. The book looks & sounds lovely but it looks like it’s not available from my fav bookstore (The BookDepository) 🙁
    Looks like my only chance is to win a copy here *grins*
    Keeping my fingers crossed…..

    Reply

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