Thursday, February 5, 2015

Wildfire Creek by Shirleen Davies ♥ Fun Facts, Book Tour & GIVEAWAY ♥ (Western Historical Romance)

“A passionate story of rebuilding lives and working to find a place in the wild frontier during the years following the American Civil War. A rugged, heartwarming story of choices and love in the continuing saga of Redemption Mountain.”

Luke Pelletier is settling into his new life as a rancher and occasional Pinkerton Agent, leaving his past as an ex-Confederate major and Texas Ranger far behind. He wants nothing more than to work the ranch, charm the ladies, and live a life of carefree bachelorhood.

Ginny Sorensen has accepted her responsibility as the sole provider for herself and her younger sister. The desire to continue their journey to Oregon is crushed when the need for food and shelter keeps them in the growing frontier town of Splendor, Montana, forcing Ginny to accept work as a server in the local saloon.

Luke has never met a woman as lovely and unspoiled as Ginny. He longs to know her, yet fears his wild ways and unsettled nature aren’t what she deserves. She’s a girl you marry, but that is nowhere in Luke’s plans.

Complicating their tenuous friendship, a twist in circumstances forces Ginny closer to the man she most wants to avoid—the man who can destroy her dreams, and who’s captured her heart.

Believing his bachelor status firm, Luke moves from danger to adventure, never dreaming each step he takes brings him closer to his true destiny and a life much different from what he imagines.
The Challenges of Writing a Series


Authors are an adaptable group. We write wherever we happen to be when inspiration hits, we change our personality to fit the character we are penning—an introverted author may become an extrovert through their writing, we write short stories and long tomes, and we pen stand-alone stories or plan out a series ranging from three to ten books or more. All writing presents challenges. For me, I encounter the most challenges when writing a series, such as the MacLarens of Fire Mountain.

Series creation requires the author to look toward the future and identify characters for books that may not be penned for months. The author builds a family or community where readers make a connection through the stories. Readers are encouraged to become a part of this community and get to know the inhabitants.

Most important, the author must create characters that readers like and want to follow over a long period of time. An author once told me that readers of romance inhale them like air—romance books aren’t a long-term commitment, but a short-term ‘story fix.’ This may or may not be true, but I do believe the opposite is true of romance books that are part of a series.

Characters in a series become a group of friends the reader relates to, commiserates with, and roots for. If written well, the reader is able to visualize themselves as a part of the community and not an outsider watching from afar.

The challenge for me is developing characters that are interesting, engaging, and project different personalities that complement the story and not detract from it. For book one, Tougher than the Rest, I knew the oldest brother needed to have a stoic personality, a somber demeanor, and a no-nonsense approach to his responsibilities. He didn’t have the luxury of being anything else. The protagonist in book two, Faster Than The Rest, didn’t have the same accountabilities and could afford to be more of a rebel. Both characters appeal to me but in different ways, much like a family. At the same time, the women in their lives must fit into the family and not make the reader want to disengage from the series.

Even though I write both stand-alone books and ongoing series, in the end, I much prefer writing a series. Why? Because I get to become a part of the family and experience their heartbreaks, troubles, and triumphs. And isn’t that what romance is about?

I’d love to read your comments about the difference between stand-alone or series books, or which you prefer to read.

“Hold it right there.”

Ginny froze, not recognizing the deep growl coming from behind her.
“Put your hands up and turn around.”

She did as he asked, her heart pounding, wondering if someone had slipped by Hank to come in the front door. Slowly she turned, raising her eyes to meet those of the man holding a gun on her. Her breath caught at the sight of Luke, his face hard, his mouth in a thin line. She could see the instant recognition dawned. He lowered the gun in a quick motion and slammed it into the holster.

“What the hell are you doing here? And why are you dressed like that?”

She swallowed the hard lump in her throat and took in a shuttering breath, anger replacing the fear she’d felt.

“You scared the daylights out of me,” she hissed and pulled the hat off her head, exposing soft brown wisps of hair which had escaped the loose bun.

He held his ground, taking in the sight of her in men’s trousers, a too big shirt haphazardly tucked inside and held together by a wide leather belt. The coat he’d given her covered the ridiculous outfit. He let his gaze wander over her, his eyes softening at the same time his body tightened—a reaction he was powerless to control.
“I asked what you’re doing here, sneaking around the house. Stealing?”

“I am not stealing,” she threw back at him. “I work here.”

“What?” His voice took on a hard edge as his eyes narrowed, signaling his disbelief.

“Dax and Rachel hired me to take on Bernice’s job.”

He took a step forward, then thought better of it, crossing his arms over his chest, planting his feet shoulder width apart. Frustration warred with the desire he felt toward her. This was not what he’d expected to come home to—Ginny living at the ranch. It slammed into him that he’d see her every day, obliged to be around her, and forced to fight his constant attraction toward her. His jaw hardened as he processed the implication of her new position. He didn’t like it. Not one bit.

“We’ll see about that.” He turned and stormed from the room, walking into the study, slamming the door behind him.
      
♥ Click on the image to learn more ♥
Shirleen Davies writes romance—historical, contemporary, and romantic suspense. She grew up in Southern California, attended Oregon State University, and has degrees from San Diego State University and the University of Maryland. During the day she provides consulting services to small and mid-sized businesses. But her real passion is writing emotionally charged stories of flawed people who find redemption through love and acceptance. She now lives with her husband in a beautiful town in northern Arizona.
         
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1 comment :

  1. Thanks so much for hosting Wildfire Creek on your blog.
    I welcome comments or questions from your readers. They may reach me at shirleen@shirleendavies.com.
    Enjoy your week and your reading!
    Shirleen

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