At Risk with Maggie Robinson
Update: Maggie’s random winner is… Molly. And Terri C. will be receiving an Improper Gentlemen from me. Congrats, ladies!
I’m tickled to welcome my co-author for Improper Gentlemen, Maggie Robinson! She’s suffering from “blog-lag,” after several months of almost non-stop touring through cyber-space. Reminds me of my 50 day/50 blog tour for Vexing the Viscount! I was afraid there were no more words in me after that! But fortunately Maggie’s having no trouble at all finding entertaining things to say. Be sure to leave a comment to enter the giveaway!
Mia, thanks so much for having me back! I’m looking at the end of a million-month blog tour, starting in July with Improper Gentlemen (with the fab Mia Marlowe!) and ending in October with Mistress by Marriage.
I’ve really learned a lot about myself as a writer these past few months. I’m a huge pantser—words just kind of flow and at the end, I have a book. I don’t deliberately sit down to create a specific kind of character, but have discovered from readers that I do anyway—apparently, I’m a risk-taker, writing riskily (and alliteratively. My spell check wanted to change that to illiterately—yes, that too, sometimes. *g*).
This comes as a huge surprise, because I’m the most conventional, shy, risk-averse goody-two-shoes kind of person in real life. I obey speed limits, cook pork till it’s gray, never go bra-less. But when it comes to making up people, I push boundaries. Edward Christie, the hero of Mistress by Marriage is rather cold; some might even say mean. He out-Darcys Mr. Darcy. I know he’s a mass of goo on the inside, but he doesn’t show that right away, and readers can get impatient. His heroine Caroline is worse—she’s got a terrible temper, throws things and generally sabotages her marriage. They cannot get along, except in bed.
He felt the muscle in his cheek jump. “You of all people know I don’t play games, Caroline. But I do set the rules, and you’d be wise to follow them.” He ducked the pillow she threw at his head. “Be careful what you throw next. You wouldn’t want to make me angry.”
“Yes, I would! I should love to see you angry—furious—livid, wild and ungovernable!” She looked wild and ungovernable herself, her eyes flashing, her tangled hair worthy of Medusa.
“I do so hate to disappoint you.” He folded his hands over his member, the act both self-preserving and calming. He was not going to rise to the occasion by temperament or temptation.
They both have perfectly good reasons for being who they are, but it would have been a lot easier for me to make them more “normal” and less idiosyncratic. But you know what? I write flawed characters, who make mistakes but don’t let the mistakes make them.
Andrew Rossiter, the hero of my next book, Master of Sin (April 2012), was abused as a child and has lost his moral compass. I just finished writing Lady Anne’s Lover (Spring 2013), whose hero Gareth Ripton-Jones is a one-armed alcoholic. My current WIP features an ex-soldier with ADD. Remember, I don’t deliberately think of the craziest whacked-out stuff, but there it is in black and white. Risk R Us. Maybe I need therapy!
As a reader, are you along for the risky ride, or would you rather have smooth-sailing? I’ve got a copy of Mistress by Marriage for one commenter!
Thanks for dropping by, Maggie! I’ll sweeten the free reads pot by offering a copy of Improper Gentlemen to a commenter as well. So now it’s YOUR turn! What do you think? Risky ride or Smooth Sailing?
P. S. Since Halloween is coming up, I’m blogging about “Salem in October” at Brava Authors today. Hope you’ll join me there too.