Thursday, September 19, 2013

Team Boy!

I was trolling through Facebook and ran across my friends post. Like me, she has two boys. Unlike me she is pregnant with twins, more boys! Apparently people keep asking her if she wants a girl. As if it’s a choice.

Personally,  I wouldn't know what to do with a girl.

Case in point: My niece came to me one day with several hair things and was like "fix my hair!" I just stared at her dumb founded. Mornings are easy at my house, with boys, a couple of swipes with a brush and you’re good.
This was more challenging. Not only did I have to brush through the tangled mop on my niece’s head, but to construct some kind of topiary with it. How did it end up in brambles anyhow? It was quite straight and tidy when she went to bed.
Perhaps there were fairies frolicking in it during the night. Nonetheless, I bravely grasped the brush and attempted to tame it. A half hour later, she ended up with almost straight pigtails. And I was pondering if it was too early for wine.
It has come to me, that not only are there cat & dog people, there are girl & boy people. Take my mother for instance. She raised two lovely, delicate girls. So when my fist son was born, she was very dotting but naïve.

One day when Nicholas was three, we were talking in the garage. Nicholas walks up to Grandma with his grubby fist outstretched where he had been digging in the dirt. She automatically held out her hand to receive whatever treasure he had found. His fingers open and a brown spider drops into my mom’s hand and immediately runs up her arm. There was much screaming. *sigh*

And with boys, come boy scouts. I had never been camping in my life, but being a mom of a boy, you have to escape your comfort zone. So I became adept at putting up a tent, and changing clothes inside a sleeping bag. I still have scars from chigger bites, but good memories as well. A bad boy scout memory:  running a weekend concession stand at Nascar, but therapy has helped.

Speaking of therapy, boys are harder to potty train than girls. My youngest son, was almost four before he managed both tasks. After discussing my potty training woes with his doctor, he recommended a therapist for my son. So… he would get to play in a play room with his brother; while I discussed poo for an hour with a stranger. She explained that boys don’t have as many nerve endings ‘down there’ as girls and that boys don’t always pick up on the subtle clues. (This has also explained a lot of my dates.) We made up a poo chart with a Gameboy as the grand prize. Bribery works every time.

Shopping for clothes is fairly easy, no accessories needed. My oldest son is ‘sensitive’ so I shop for him by feel. My youngest would wear anything. I do have a major complaint of clothing stores. Most unisex stores have three racks for boy clothes and 20 for girls. Really?

My boys are older now, and my sister has one of each. Recently, my mom came back from a shopping trip exhausted from chasing after my nephew.

I just smiled, I’m Team Boy.

My Character is Gay

My Character is GayAs a Historical Romance Author, Imagine my Surprise When I Realized That my Character was Gay.

As a Historical Romance Author, I put much depth into my characters. Even the minor ones. I like to create a background for them, who they are, where do they come from, why are they there?
Imagine my surprise when I realized that my character was gay.

You would think I would have noticed it before.
The subtle clues, their reactions to each other, and certain situations.
But no.
I was oblivious until my main character, Sarah, caught him sneaking out of a man’s room in the middle of the night.
To complicate matters, War of Hearts is set in 1776, even women were oppressed back then. Much less a gay man. So it seems to reason that it would be kept a secret.
From everyone.
Even me.
Sure they tried to keep it quiet, but after that night, I was more aware. And more than a bit shocked. And then quiet acceptance, the character hadn’t changed. But my view of the character had. And I needed to let them know that it did not matter.
That this new realization did not harm our relationship. That I still saw them as a moral, devoted human being. One with strength and feelings. One that fought more desperately, and risked more for love than perhaps any of my other characters. Later on, as our trust deepened, the gaps were filled in: how they met, became companions, built a relationship of trust, as well as love.
And it was okay.
And their secret became mine.

Of course this isn’t the first unusual relationship in my stories. In Run into the Wind, my main character is a cross dresser. And the man of her dreams, battles with his emotions, as he is still attracted to her/him.
Perhaps, people aren’t attracted by the persona, but by their soul. I have often contemplated there being a soulmate for everyone. And who are we to say what color, creed, or sex they should be?
So whether it is 1776 or 2013, Tory or Rebel, hearts should have no bounds.

Thursday, September 12, 2013

Devil's Brae- New Release by Faith Mortimer

Synopsis for Devil’s Brae

Imagine a warm autumn afternoon in a remote village in the Scottish Highlands. Cassandra  Potter, fleeing from the memories of two traumatic deaths, goes walking alone on Devil’s Brae.

The wild country is empty, stretching for miles in every direction, it is then she sees him. A dark brooding figure, standing and watching as Cassandra climbs the brae. Apart from a lingering uneasy feeling she ignores the watcher, until the next time and it is then she realises her mistake. Someone wishes her gone from the village – at all costs.

Cassandra’s life is plunged into danger. Who is threatening her existence and her sanity? Who is the mysterious stranger? An inhabitant of the village of Inverdarroch? Or a person from her clouded past?
Above all, why is this happening to her?

Author Q&A

What attracted you to writing in the first place?
Loving literature as I do, I’d always wanted to write – whether it was novels, plays or poetry. As a child I used to write stories for my sisters and then as I grew older, my short stories became much longer until they resembled novellas. But it wasn’t until the early 2000s that I started writing my first full-length novel 

What genre are you most comfortable writing?
There’s more than one and I like to switch from one to another making sure I don’t become stale with my writing. I love crime writing; murder mystery suspense, but I don’t do real hard core violence – I prefer to let the reader’s imagination take over after I’ve laid down some hints. I love writing adventure and action mixed in with romantic suspense. Finally I’ve recently begun writing pure romance and I’m enjoying writing in an entirely different vein.

How has your upbringing influenced your writing?
I’ve lived an amazing life – and God willing I’ve got a lot of living still to do!  Since the age of five I’ve been fortunate in visiting many countries and six of my tender years I spent living in Malaya and Singapore. I think living abroad and mixing with different cultures and class has enriched my life and hopefully my writing.

Where do you get your inspiration and ideas from?
From all sorts of places. It could be a simple snippet from an overheard conversation, talking with friends, reading an article in a magazine or something from the television. I have an antenna that turns towards interesting themes and I log on – especially if the subject is unusual!

Do you have any writing rituals or listen to “mood music” when you write? Where is your favorite place to write?
I try and write in the morning for a few hours, then break and do something else. If I have time and the inspiration I’ll pick up and carry on. The next day I go over the previous day’s work and edit it. I rarely listen to music – I need quiet and I write in our ‘snug’.

What’s your favorite place in the entire world?
Being with my husband and family.

Fame or fortune, which would you prefer?
Can I have both please?!!

If you couldn’t be an author, what would your ideal career be?
Either a surgeon or an actor/singer

Chocolate, vanilla, or strawberry?
Chocolate! Every time. Even when I diet I save room for a tiny piece as a reward!

If you were stranded on a desert island what 3 things would you want with you?
Unlimited supply of water and food. My reading glasses and books. My mate.

Please tell us in one sentence only, why we should read your book.
My editor is pretty excited about this book – she says I improve with each one! This is the first of a new ‘Dark Minds’ series and I enjoyed writing it - I’d love you to share the experience with me.

So what’s next for you as an author? Any last words?
I’ve finished writing a new romance this one is set around Christmas so aptly names, On Christmas Hill. I love it and made my husband cry when he first read it! On the thriller side of things, fans are demanding another Diana Rivers Mystery…so I’ve already started a new novel and this is set in Portugal.


Now let’s talk a little about, ‘Devil’s Brae’.

When asked about the inspiration for, ‘Devil’s Brae, I immediately think of my fans and followers. ‘Devil’s Brae is the first in a new psychological thriller series – the Dark Mind series.
My first series, the Diana Rivers series, currently has five books with a sixth planned. The books are:  The Assassins’ Village, Children of the Plantation, The Surgeon’s Blade, and Camera Action…Murder! and Childhunt– My followers keep asking when the next book is coming out and I’m doing my best to keep up! So either last in 2013 or early 2014 there will be a sixth added to the collection!

Mystery suspense thrillers are fun to write, perhaps because there are so many little threads which need to be absolutely correct. I enjoy thinking up little clues to keep the reader guessing and a few red herring to throw them off the track. As well as pitting my wits in writing the story I have to remember that my audience is often very skilled in working through the mystery, so there has to be lots to keep everyone interested right through to the final page.

I’m so lucky in that I love what I’m doing and feel privileged because I have some amazing followers. I sincerely hope I never forget that it is my readers who have helped get me where I am today. Thank you.

Get it Here:

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Faith Mortimer is a wife & mother, dividing her time between Hampshire, UK & Cyprus. Since childhood, she dreamt of writing novels which readers would love, & spent many hours writing short stories which she read to her sisters.
Later her dreams were put on hold while she focused upon her family & careers as a nurse & later overseeing a string of travel & sport related companies.
Born in Manchester & educated in Singapore, Malaya & Hampshire, England. A Registered nurse & in later years changed careers to oversee a number of travel & sport related companies.