I am a writer and avid reader of romances particularly historical romances. Please join me on my journey through time
Please welcome Wendy May Andrews author of the Reluctant Debutante
Wendy will be awarding $15 Amazon or B/N GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour.
The Reluctant Debutante
by Wendy May Andrews
GENRE: Historical Romance (Regency)
I have been an avid reader since I learned how when I was four or five. My love for words is so strong that I will even read the cereal box over and over. If I’m reading a really good book, the house could explode and I might not notice. My husband doesn’t love this particular trait of mine. In frustration, one day he dared me to write a book before I read another one. I didn’t think I could do it but I accepted his dare. It took a great deal of effort, but that first manuscript eventually became my first published book in 2010.
My ideas come from anywhere, an overheard snippet of conversation, a news item, movies, situations with friends… I write historicals but I often wonder “how would this be dealt with in 1805?” and there I have a story idea.
To write many more J I have recently written the first draft of the first book in two different planned series. Both historical but one will be 1855 American mid-west, the other 1800 England. The Western series is new for me so I’m excited about that, more research (which I enjoy) is required as I’m not as familiar with the time period or setting. The Regency series is based on an historical plaque I read while visiting England last year for research and it has spawned a multitude of ideas. I can’t wait to get to each of them!
The very first book I ever wrote, Tempting the Earl, is about a young woman, Emily, who is running away from her unscrupulous cousin who is trying to get his hands on her wealth after she has been left orphaned. It turns out that some of the titles her father had held could be inherited by either a male or female offspring so she ends up with higher status than the hero which puts her on an equal playing field. So, despite the challenges she faced in her story, I would love to walk a while in her shoes. She was brave and intrepid in the face of what appeared to be insurmountable trials but she prevailed.
I’m sorry to be difficult but I cannot answer this question. I want my readers to picture for themselves what the hero and heroine look like so I don’t want to name anyone specific. That is why my heroine is looking away from the reader on my front cover. All you need to know is that she is a lovely blonde young woman. You must use your own imagination. That is the magic of reading.
I don’t belong to a critique group per se, but I do have brainstorming partners who also write historicals. We get together to bounce ideas off each other from time to time. It’s very refreshing, helpful, and inspiring. I also belong to a couple writing organizations and the online forums are extremely helpful. There is always someone you can ask for any help you might need. From my experience, fellow authors are very ready to lend a hand or answer a question when needed.
After my husband convinced me to write that first book, the next logical step (or so he convinced me) was to try to get it published. Of course, that is much easier said than done but at the time ignorance was bliss. If I had known how hard it would be to get published I probably would have chickened out. Really, my husband was entirely the reason why I am a multi-published author today. I guess I owe him a nice dinner…
The best advice I have ever received was sit your butt in the chair and write the next book J Everyone has an opinion about where the publishing industry is heading and how to sell more books, but the best advice is just how to write the very best book you can and keep producing more books.
The worst advice? I don’t really believe in bad advice. Everyone has something to offer and you can find something to apply in what they have to say.
I do a little of both. I’m not a total pantser but I don’t have extensive outlines. I usually have a pretty good idea of what makes my hero and heroine tick before I start. I also usually know the inciting incident and of course we have to get to happily ever after. But I don’t necessarily know what’s going to happen in between. So my first couple of chapters are slow to write as I figure out all the characters and get into the groove. On the other hand, though, I’m not one of those authors who feel that the characters are in control. I am very much queen of my little writing world J
I love to travel and I’m really into walking. These don’t really translate into my plots but they both really help my writing. I have been to England several times so it helps me with descriptions and having a “feel” for my location even though my stories are set two hundred years ago. Also, when I go for long walks, it’s very helpful for plotting, even in the back of my head. Sometimes, if I’m not sure where to go next when I’m writing, I’ll step away from my desk, go for a walk, and my subconscious has it figured out by the time I come back.
The list is too long! I have read and loved everything by Lucy Maud Montgomery and Louisa May Alcott since childhood. Another favourite author is Georgette Heyer – she was prolific, I haven’t yet read everything she wrote but have loved everything I’ve read so far.
Friends of mine adopted a little boy several years ago which prompted me to do some research about adoptions. I read all sorts of fascinating and horrifying things, but I also came across an interesting tidbit that is going to result in a new series. I already have the first draft of the first book done. There will be at least three books in that series. It’s my first truly planned series and I’m pretty excited about it. I won’t be releasing the first one until I have the second at least in first draft form, but hopefully it will be ready to go by early next year.
I must not be a very decisive person, this is a tough question to answer! I loved Robin Williams. I love movies with Mark Wahlberg, Matt Damon, Dwayne Johnson, and so many more. For actresses, I love Reese Witherspoon, Emily Mortimer, Anna Kendrick, and Julia Roberts. Have you seen Hidden Figures? That was an amazing movie! The movie RV with Robin Williams made me laugh until my sides hurt! And San Andreas? Kept me on the edge of my seat.
This is a great question – the black moment is always the best part of the book. It’s hard to write but I love reading it. In The Reluctant Debutante’s black moment Victoria has found out that her uncle has been defrauding her and she believes that the man she has fallen in love with was only using her to seek revenge against her uncle. She decides to leave her home and join a convent.
The Duke of Wychwood seeks retribution from the Earl of Pickering. When he finds out the earl has a beautiful young niece, the duke thinks to involve her in his feud, but is shocked to discover he is attracted to her.
The orphaned niece of the earl, Lady Victoria, serves as governess to four of his children and is made to feel like an interloper in her own home. A chance encounter with the duke affords her the opportunity to enter Society, but to take it means risking what little security she has.
Revenge and love don’t sit well together, to have a future can they learn to give up the past?
Opening page – first time hero sees heroine
“Who is that ravishing creature entering the devil’s lair?” Bryghton Alcott, the fifth Duke of Wychwood, asked his friend, his gaze arrested by the slender figure climbing the stairs to a midsize townhouse as they rode past.
Turning in his saddle to gape at the young woman, Lord Lynster grinned, thrilled to know something his powerful friend did not. He turned back to face the duke. “You don’t know who that is?”
“Would I be asking you if I knew?” Bryghton said, with a wry twist to his lips.
His left eyebrow tilted at a somewhat haughty angle, the young baron finally answered with a touch of dramatic flair, “That, my good fellow, is the devil’s niece, Lady Victoria Bartley.”
“Really?” the duke asked, incredulity now echoed in his voice. “How did I not know that the devil had a niece? Surely this information could be used to my advantage.”
“I have no idea how you could have researched your enemy so thoroughly and yet not know that he is living in his niece’s house. I never thought to mention it since it seemed to be a matter of common knowledge. Of course, the lady was a child when the devil inherited her father’s title, so I suppose you took no note of her existence.”
Alcott’s face held a far-away expression for a few moments before his gaze sharpened on his friend’s face. “You said the devil is living in her house. What do you mean?”
“The earl only inherited what was entailed. The previous earl doted on his only child and left everything that was unentailed to his daughter, including the London townhouse we just rode past. The new earl, the young lady’s uncle, is her guardian until she gains control of her own fortune. As such, he and his family live with Lady Victoria when they are in Town. She lives with them in her former home when they are in the country.” Alfred, Lord Lynster, “Fred” to his friends, looked at Bryghton with a touch of anxiety, unsure of how his friend would use this information to his advantage. “The young woman faced much tragedy at a tender age, losing both her parents in that terrible carriage accident that made the devil the earl.”
“Yes, and no doubt she could use a friend, being stuck in the same house with Bartley and his family as she is,” concurred the duke, his handsome face darkened by a sinister cast.
AUTHOR Bio and Links:
Best-selling author, Wendy May Andrews, has been in love with the written word since she learned to read at the age of five. She has been writing for almost as long but it took her some time before she was willing to share her stories with anyone other than her mother.
Wendy can be found with her nose in a book in a cozy corner of downtown Toronto. She is happily married to her own real-life hero, who is also her best friend and favourite travel companion. Being a firm believer that every life experience contributes to the writing process, Wendy is off planning her next trip.
She loves to hear from her readers and can be found at her website (wendymayandrews.com), on twitter, Instagram or Facebook.
Website & Blog: http://wendymayandrews.com
GIVEAWAY INFORMATION and RAFFLECOPTER CODE
Wendy will be awarding $15 Amazon or B/N GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour.