Aleen Davis is the randomly selected winner of ONCE A WALLFLOWER, AT LAST HIS LOVE. I’ll email you, Aleen!
The Jaunty Quills are excited to present USA Today bestselling historical romance author Christi Caldwell, author of a dozen historical romances. She’s consistently on the Hot New Release list and a bestseller. It’s past time we had her as a guest here.
Readers, keep reading to find out how to win your copy of Once a Wallflower, At Last His Love.
Shana: Welcome, Christi! Tell us about Once a Wallflower, At Last His Love, the newest in the Scandalous Seasons series.
Christi Caldwell: Thank you so much for the warm introduction and for having me visit at the Jaunty Quills!
“Once a Wallflower, At Last His Love” is special to me; for very personal reasons. After a series of tragedies befall her family, the heroine, Miss Hermione Rogers takes on the responsibility of caring for her two younger siblings and her eldest sister who has special needs. In order to do so, she writes gothic novels for some meager coins. She’s been tasked with writing the tale of a dark, brooding duke. But the problem (among many) is that she’s never met a duke and is wholly uninspired—until she meets, Sebastian Fitzhugh the 5th Duke of Mallen.
This story is really about those familial bonds and the lengths we go to protect and care for those we love.
Shana: Tell us all about your hero, Sebastian Fitzhugh. I do love a duke hero, and Sebastian sounds delish!
Christi Caldwell: Thanks, Shana! Well, Sebastian is everything that Miss Hermione Rogers’ story doesn’t call for! He’s charming and clever and kind. For years he’s watched all those around him manage to make love matches. Tired of being desired for his title and nothing more, he’s bewitched by Hermione’s total lack of interest in his ducal status.
Shana: I love reading your Facebook posts about your three adorable kids. How do you juggle writing and family?
Christi Caldwell: I’ve had to become very organized and efficient in how I use my time while my son is off at school. My twins take 2 long naps still during the day and in that time, I write uninterrupted. Through the years, I’ve honed my typing skills and can write about 2000 words an hour. But the real secret of how I juggle writing with family is with the support of my husband and parents who give me the additional time I need at night and on weekends. I’ve been blessed.
Shana: What drew you to writing books set in the Regency era?
Christi Caldwell: I began reading Regency romance novels when I was 13 years old. I picked up a Jude Deveraux book and finished everything she’d written and moved on to Julie Garwood and then I found Judith McNaught. I was a voracious reader and something about the era just spoke to me.
Shana: My first historical romance was also by Jude Devereaux and then I quickly fell in love with Julie Garwood’s books too! Finally, tell us what you have coming next.
Christi Caldwell: I have several releases planned in the near future!
Kathryn Le Veque and I are releasing “Dark Deceptions” which is a collection of our darkest pieces on March 15th. My story is titled “My Lady of Deception” and prior to this has only been available in the Limited Edition USA Today Bestselling Box set “From the Ballroom and Beyond” and the “Romancing the Rogue” collection.
I’ll also be releasing Book 3, in my “Heart of a Duke” series. The $0.99 novella “The Love of a Rogue” will be available March 29th, with Book 4 a full-length titled “Loved By a Duke” coming in May!
Readers, now it’s your turn. What author started you reading historical romance (or any romance!). One reader who comments will be randomly chosen to win Once a Wallflower, At Last His Love. The winner will be announced Sunday and contacted via email.
Here’s a joke I love about writing.
Author 1: You know the hardest part about writing?
Author 2: The part you’re working on now.
It’s so incredibly true! When I’m writing a book, I think crafting new pages is the hardest thing in the world. Some days all the words flow and the pages rush out of my fingers as if I’d already written them and just needed to set them down on paper. More often, each page seems to take an eternity as I stare into space and struggle over every single word. For me, this usually happens toward the latter half of the book, which makes it even more frustrating. The beginning goes so well, and then suddenly everything slows. Down. To. A. Crawl.
Recently I was in the midst of one of those manuscript crawls when I had the brilliant idea to pull out an old manuscript, rework it, and publish it. My readers had emailed me for years asking for Ethan and Francesca’s story. I’d actually even written the whole book, but I’d never sold it because it was chronologically before the events of my first published book, WHEN DASHING MET DANGER, and my editor wanted to go forward not back.
I pulled the book out, not even certain if it was salvageable, but after I read it and asked a few readers to take a look, I decided it was publishable with a few changes. I figured fixing WHILE YOU WERE SPYING would be far easier than writing a new book. I only had to polish it to rid it of some of my amateur mistakes.
You’re laughing now, aren’t you? You probably realize what I didn’t at the time. Sometimes it’s far harder to fix something flawed than to start all over again. And so for seven months—twice as long as I would have spent writing a new book—I labored over my “finished” book. I’m proud to announce it will be out next month. If you enjoyed WHEN DASHING MET DANGER and PRIDE AND PETTICOATS and ever wondered about Ethan and Francesca’s story, you’ll want to read this one.
Or if you just want to see what a book that doubles as an instrument of torture reads like, you’ll want to grab it as well.
Cover reveals and pre-order links and all that to come soon, but in the meantime, how about I give away the first two books in the series? They’re only available digitally because they came out in 2005 and 2006 (Throwback Tuesday!).
If you have a Kindle, and you’d like copies of both books, just comment below. Tell me your favorite thing to fix up—cars, houses, recipes—or maybe you prefer to watch other people fix things up on HGTV or Overhaulin.
The randomly chosen winner will be announced and contacted Sunday.
One of the hardest things for me as an author is balancing the promotional requirements when a new book releases. Usually about a month before the book comes out, I’m given a list of 25 or so blogs, a dozen or more which will require me to produce original content.
I don’t mind writing blog posts at all. I actually enjoy them for the most part. The problem is that I’m writing posts about a book I’ve usually finished about a year before. By the time I’m writing those posts, I’ve not only begun another book, but I’m probably doing revisions or copyedits on a third book. Sometimes I open my laptop to work, and I can’t remember what book I’m writing about!
That said, I’m always impressed by the creative topics my publicist and/or the bloggers come up with. Two of my favorite stops for the Earls Just Want to Have Fun blog tour are Saph’s Book Blog and Bitten by Romance.
At Saph’s Book Blog, I blogged on my favorite historical gowns. I must tell you this involved hours of research. Oh, the torment of having to look at gorgeous gown after gorgeous gown. Actually, the real torment was having to pick only 5 of my favorites.
Which gown is your favorite? And do you know which movie or TV show it comes from? I love all of these gowns, but I’d most likely wear Daisy’s dress from The Great Gatsby. In fact, I have a 1920s dress, and I love wearing it with the sparkly head piece.
At Bitten By Romance, I blogged about my favorite noblemen from film. In recent years I haven’t seen a lot of films, so once again, I had to search the web for fabulous noblemen. Of course, Mr. Darcy was at the top of my list, but which one? Colin Firth or Matthew McFadden? And I love so many of the Disney princes. Should I go with Prince Phillip, Prince Eric, or someone else?
How does my list of movie noblemen measure up to yours?
So now worries about this test. You can’t have a wrong answer!
In the writing world we all know that “the call” is when an editor calls you and offers to buy your book. Getting that first call is exhilarating and scary and a myriad of other emotions. For many of us it’s a long time coming. For me, personally, I waited 7 years and in those years wrote 5 manuscripts before that first book sold (Courting Claudia) In any case it’s about as exciting a phone call as you can ever receive. But I’ve received a different kind of phone call. It was nearly 4 years ago and I’ve been thinking about it a lot lately as I’m preparing to speak to a group of moms soon about my experience with foster-care adoption.
The Professor and I had been through classes and all the licensing rigamarole you must go through in order to be approved as foster-to-adopt parents. Our social worker (for lack of a better thing to call her) had been in touch with me several times, presenting kiddo options. We’d said no to a few due to some issues we felt we weren’t prepared to handle and some we said yes to. Basically when you say yes they submit your home study and then a handful of people read through that and make a decision based on that. But back to the story…so our social worker called me to tell me about these two little girls and did I want to submit our home study. Well, The Professor was actually in class, but I didn’t need to consult with him, it seemed a reasonable enough situation to say yes to.
And then the waiting began. I knew we would be working on a fast time line because the girls’ social worker wanted them placed like two weeks later. So we waited for what seemed like FOREVER and then we got THE CALL. Selling a book was damn exciting, but getting this call was way cooler. We were picked to be the girls’ parents. Of course we had some issues to deal with over the ensuing months (that’s another blog) but they would be ours. And we had exactly 7 days to get ready. Now most of you get a good 9 months to plan and prep for a baby. We had to plan and prep for a baby and a toddler in just a week. I didn’t get a shower, but plenty of my friends gave me gifts and hand-me-downs to help get me set-up (including my fellow Jaunty sisters!) Much shopping ensued and we were ready when they got here. Okay, let me rephrase that, their room was ready, there was really no readiness (emotionally speaking) for us (but again, that’s another blog).
Tell me, how did you plan for your little ones? I’ll pick two commenters to win my first book, Courting Claudia. You can pick whether you get a ebook or paperback.