Archive for April 16th, 2008

Amnesia had stolen millionaire businessman Donovan Keane’s memory. But one look at treacherous beauty Susannah Horton, and Van could picture every delicious detail of the weekend they’d spent in his bed. She’d staged their affair to ruin an important deal—a deal about to go to her fiancé. Not that Van would let that happen. During one hot night, he’d destroy her engagement, take back the deal and walk away with all the memories he’d need. Good thing, because he’d never be able to get her out of his mind.

NT: Hi Bron! Thank you for interviewing with RRAH. Can you tell us a little about yourself?

BJ: My pleasure. I’m ever so chuffed to be here at Novel Thoughts for the first time. A little about me: I’m an Aussie wife, mother and farmer, who loves horses, reading, movies, reality TV and cruising blogs. In my spare time I write sensually rich romance for Silhouette Desire. Most of my 14 books to date have been set in Australia, and whether they’re more at home in a city suit or cattleman’s books my heroes are all tough guys with heart.

NT: When did you know you wanted to be a writer? How long did it take for you to make your first sale?

BJ: Growing up I didn’t know it was possible to make a career from writing (other than as a journalist, which I did work as for a time.) I started writing my first book on my 40th birthday, after reading a magazine article several months earlier on “how to be the next Barbara Cartland.” I didn’t want the pink ruffles, but I loved the idea of making up the kind of stories I loved to read. I fell in love with romance writing that first day but it took me 5 years to make the first sale.

NT: Is writing a full-time job for you or do you juggle another job?

BJ: See question one.

NT: You have TYCOON’S ONE-NIGHT REVENGE out this month. Tell us about it.

BJ: Tycoon’s One-Night Revenge tells the story of Susannah, who runs away on the eve of a very convenient marriage to Mr. Perfect after receiving a mysterious voicemail. Donovan Keane, a blast from her past, is threatening to expose the truth behind her “perfect” arrangement. Susannah and Van spent a torrid weekend together before he disappeared, leaving her hurt and vulnerable to this business merger marriage which will save her business…and also vulnerable to his accusations. When a wild storm traps Susannah and Van at a wilderness resort, she misses her own wedding and is forced to face the secrets of that previous weekend with Van.

NT: What inspired the idea for this book?

BJ: Two things. Firstly, Susannah was a secondary character in a previous book, The Ruthless Groom. I received a lot of mail asking for her story and I wanted to tell it, to give her side of the runaway bride’s story. Secondly, a friend’s son lost a piece of memory after an accident and I always thought that would be a cool element to use in a story. What if the missing memory included a night in a woman’s bed…and he had no recollection? (Not my friend’s son, I hasten to add, but my fictional character.) When I was working out why Susannah ran away and the “mystery man’s” story, the amnesia fit well. Not complete forget-everything amnesia, but a piece of time completely blacked out in Donovan’s memory.

NT: Which of your characters’ story was the hardest to write? Which was the easiest?

BJ: I don’t even have to think about this. Tycoon’s One-Night Revenge is the most difficult book I’ve ever written for a number of reasons, the major one being that I didn’t plan it while writing The Ruthless Groom. I had to write this story around the established events and timeline of that book, and turn Susannah into a heroine in her own book. A lesson learned: plan for sequels, don’t write them as afterthoughts!

By contrast the easiest was The Ruthless Groom, the third book in my Princes of the Outback trilogy. I wrote the 3 brothers’ books back-to-back and by the time I got to Alex’s book I knew the characters so well and the story I wanted to tell — it just flowed. Wish that happened more often!

NT: Do you have a writing routine? What is your average writing day like?

BJ: My routine is to potter around doing a bit here and a bit there before going into a complete panic when I realise I have to write three-quarters of a book in a couple of weeks. I wish I could be a five-page-a-day writer, every day — no, wait, I wish I were a twenty-page-a-day writer, every day — but it seems I need to work my way into a story, to get to know the characters and the essence of their story, before I can write strongly and ever more quickly toward the end.

NT: Is there any plot/setting/character that you’re dying to write but haven’t yet?

BJ: Always. It’s the next one, the one I’m not writing now, and it’s always a brilliant, enticing, shiny new geegaw that distracts me from my current story. Apart from that: I’d like to write a thriller one day, something taut and hot (the story, not the hero.)

NT: What aspects of your life have you found creeping into your stories?

BJ: Mostly that would be the insecurities of my heroines, the fact that they all have secret fears and vulnerabilities beneath the sophisticated or confident or capable veneers. I think a lot of readers relate to that — at least, I hope so. The other thing is my Australian settings, the colours and texture of the Australian way of life, and a bit of the language as well. Readers tell me that enjoy the little quirks of our language, things I don’t even notice when I’m writing.

NT: Is there anyone you use as a sounding board when you’re stuck on a scene?

BJ: I have a couple of very good brainstorming buddies — Yvonne Lindsay and Trish Morey — who I sometimes run a problem by. They’re a fab help; and sometimes just the process of articulating the problem leads to a solution.

NT: Who are some of the authors who inspired you when you were still working towards becoming published? Who are some of your favourite authors to read?

BJ: My inspirations when I started out where the fabulous Australian and New Zealand category romance authors who were (and still are!)huge on the international stage. Emma Darcy, Helen Bianchin, Miranda Lee, Susan Napier, Robyn Donald. They were proof that this was possible, even from this far corner of the world.

My favourites to read are those whose stories I lose myself in time after time: Linda Howard, Susan Elizabeth Phillips, Barbara Samuel, Loretta Chase, Judith Ivory.

NT: What was the most interesting thing you had to research and what was the hardest thing to research?

BJ: Most interesting: the world of diamonds for the Diamonds Down Under continuity series (out now!) link: www.diamonds-downunder.com

Hardest: another continuity project, The Bought-And-Paid-For-Wife, not only because it’s set in moneyed, exclusive Connecticut (a long way from home in every sense) but also because of my character’s backstory which resonated on a personal level; it was difficult to research and VERY difficult to write about.

NT: What was the most memorable reader reaction you’ve received about your books?

BJ: I love every reader letter I receive; it’s hard to single out one. One that does stick in my mind, I think because it was very early in my career, was from a reader who wrote to tell me about arriving home after a particularly horrendous day at a job she hated. She found my book she’d won in a website contest in her mailbox. I’d gift-wrapped it prettily, included a couple of extra little things, and it was like a gift of sunshine on the grimmest day. I love that she was able to walk in her front door that evening with a smile on her face, and then she could lose herself in the fantasy world of my book.

NT: When not busy writing, what do you like to do in your spare time? (If there is such a thing *G*)

BJ: See first question.

NT: What are the latest additions to your TBR? What are you most eager to read?

BJ: I’ve just started Anne Gracie’s The Stolen Princess which I’m enjoying immensely. I’m looking forward to Anna Campbell’s Untouched and also to reading all the books in the Diamonds Down Under continuity. We came up with the original idea, plotted the continuity elements together, put the whole package together, and it’s going to be such fun to see how each book turned out.

NT: Any advice to aspiring authors? What craft books helped you that you would recommend to aspiring writers?

BJ: I suspect I have read half the craft books ever published, but I’m not going to recommend any because what worked for me may not work for the next person. What I will say to aspiring writers is, read the books, read the articles, listen to the workshops, and take from each what works for YOU. There is no rule that says you MUST do things a certain way; I say there are no rules, just tools. Find what works for you; what makes you a happy and confident writer. And I think the best tools are reading widely and voraciously (and reading actively, absorbing the magic but also identifying why the story and the characters work for you as a reader) and writing, writing, writing.

NT: What can your fans look forward to from you in the near future? What are you working on now?

BJ: For 2009 I have a pair of closely connected books, as yet untitled, that involve a sister swap, the wrong brother, a Cinderella makeover, a British billionaire with a James Bond voice and an Aston Martin, settings in Belgravia and Paris and the south of France, a wedding at a glorious country estate, polo and art and opera and shopping. The research was more fun than should be legal and I an now addicted to Tatler magazine! To make use of all my copies, I am thinking of extending the series with two spinoffs.

NT: How can readers contact you?

BJ: Via my website at www.bronwynjameson.com.

**Leave a comment for a chance to win a copy of TYCOON’S ONE-NIGHT REVENGE!

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