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Archive for August 19th, 2011

The mate he never wanted may be the woman he can never have…

After a series of murders is discovered along the trail of the Shifter Underground, wolf soldier Jensen Tate is assigned to find and protect a missing stray. But Lia Crawford doesn’t seem to want his protection. When she eludes his watch and returns with mysterious injuries, Tate knows she’s hiding something. To discover her secrets, he’ll have to win her trust…and get closer to the woman he thinks may be his mate.

Lia has reasons to keep her distance. The killer is haunting her steps, determined to claim her. He will come after them both if he sees how drawn she is to Tate, though it becomes increasingly difficult to deny her attraction to him. Protecting Tate is vital – but will her deception cost her his love?

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I’m on Twitter quite a bit and while there, a few of us (winks at Lillie) had a fun conversation because one of us was writing against her “natural grain”—or, you know, what we’re used to from her characters. At first, it was fun just to mess with her because she was having a grand time with this new kind of character. But then, I starting thinking (always dangerous)…

What is my natural grain?

I know I write cranky heroes. The kinds of guys who brood and grumble and—most important—do what needs to get done. I love those kinds of men. I married one of those kinds of men. But what about my heroines? Do I have a grain? Aren’t they all totally different and wonderful?

As it turns out, apparently not. There are several types of heroines and while I do write a few types, there are some that are outside my grasp. For one, I’ll never be able to write a sweet, innocent type. Even when I was sweet and innocent, I wasn’t sweet and innocent. Pollyannas need not apply. And I can’t stand a girl who can’t take care of herself, so I have to scratch those chicks off my list too. Also, I have yet to write a hippy, a treehugger or anyone who doesn’t have a formidable temper. That was when I realized…my heroines are just as cranky as my heroes.

It was about here that I started to wonder if maybe this is saying something a little too revealing about yours truly.

Even if it does, the thing is, I like writing heroines that need their coffee in the morning. The ones that snarl, whether they’re shifters or not. There’s something more real, more three dimensional, about these types that just fits with my story types. I write a little dark, even in my romantic comedies. Give me a murder mystery and it gets even darker. Much, much darker.

And you know what, I kind of like that about my work. Hi, I’m Dee and I write cranky people. Then I make them happy. Well, Happy, cranky people. I’ve decided to call this a skill.

I mean, writing a broody heroine isn’t just about her ability to be cranky. She’s gotta have a good reason to be surly. Her prickly persona has to stem from somewhere and that somewhere needs to be someplace believable. I don’t like the bitter characters who are bitter because they were cheated on once by someone untrustworthy. I want them to be wary for that reason, but not bitter. I’m also big on juicy sarcasm. Nothing says “Dee wrote me!” louder than a one liner inviting the hero to pull his head out of the vast cavern of his own rump.

So, I guess you could say that I’ve been brooding on this topic, trying to grasp if knowing this about myself is a good thing. Is this to say I’ll never write a tap-dancing, lollipop-guild singing heroine? You never know. It could happen. But if I did, I guarantee you, she’ll be evil when deprived of sugar.

How about you? As a reader or a writer, what’s your natural grain? Do you prefer sweet and sassy heroines or dark and passionate?

Dee

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A big thank you to Dee for joining with us today! To find out more about Dee and Deceiving the Protector, please visit www.deetenorio.com.

For a chance to win a digital copy of Tempting the Enemy, book 1 in the Resurrection series, just leave a comment answering Dee’s question. Good luck!


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