I am a writer and avid reader of romances particularly historical romances. Please join me on my journey through time
Please welcome Bethany Michaels author of Nashville Crazy.
Bethany Michaels will be awarding a Naughty in Nashville prize pack(paperback copies of all five Nashville books plus lots of local Nashville goodies, US and International) to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour.
Don’t forget to use the rafflecopter code below to leave a comment for a chance to win.
by Bethany Michaels
I’ve always been a reader and have always written stories, but it wasn’t until I turned 30 and gave birth to kids #3 and #4 (twins) that I started to write romance with the intention to publish. When the twins were born, I already had a 13-month old and a 3 ½ year old at home. Perfect time to embark on a new career! I seriously needed some head space that was all mine, though. Writing time became MY time. I’m convinced that it was just about the only thing that kept me somewhat sane during those years, LOL.
I moved to Nashville in 2006 and instantly fell in love with the city—the people, the creative spirit, everything! People come here to make their dreams happen. I knew I wanted to write about that, and I have, beginning with the first book in Naughty in Nashville series, published in 2009. I love writing actual Nashville places into my books and try to give readers an idea of what it’s like to live and work in Nashville.
I plan to continue self-publishing my Nashville series for at least the next year, though I’m pursuing some traditional publishing opportunities, too. Next up for the Nashville series is Nashville Surprise, which is a full-length book that picks up where companion novellas Nashville Fling and Nashville Flirt leave off (both are currently free at most vendors!). My heroine, Sarah, has some major issues at the end of her novella and in Nashville Surprise, she will really be tested to her limits! I’m planning an August release for that one.
All the Nashville novels are stand-alone books, with some reoccurring characters, but for the next three Nashville books after Surprise, I’m going to do something a little different—kind of a mini-series. It’ll be set in the same Nashville world, but will be more connected, focusing on members of the same up and coming Nashville band. (hint: the band makes a cameo in Nashville Crazy). I already know my hero and heroine for the first book and can’t wait to get started on the series! I’m toying with the idea of publishing those all at the same time or in consecutive months. If so, they won’t be out until the end of 2015 or beginning of 2016.
I’m also planning a novella for Halloween that gives one reoccurring character the happily-ever-after he deserves J
Becca from Nashville Naughty. She is so sassy and confident—I want to be her when I grow up! She was definitely one of my favorite characters to write. I never knew what she was going to say next.
I have a lot of writer friends who swear by the critique group, but that process just doesn’t work for me. I tried it briefly, but found that getting feedback on a work in progress–positive or negative—really messed with my head. I need to feel confident that I can write that crappy first draft, knowing I don’t have to share with anyone until I’m happy with the story. Like Stephen King says in his book On Writing, “Write with the door closed, rewrite with the door open.” Once the book is “done” in my mind, I’m open to suggestions, revisions, etc. I think a lot of newer writers are told that they MUST join a critique group in order to become published. That’s a mistake in my opinion. Some, like me, might find it absolutely paralyzing. Each writer has to find her own way of doing things, and that way doesn’t necessarily involve a critique group. I did, however, enter a lot of contests for unpublished writers when I was first starting out. That’s a great way to get feedback and there are a TON of romance contests new writers can enter through Romance Writers of America chapters. I judge Indiana’s Golden Opportunity contest every year!
I’ve attended a lot of writing workshops through RWA and the best ones are ones in which the presenter prefaces the talk by telling the audience to take from her talk what works for the writer, and to discard the rest. You have to find your own way, as a writer—your own voice, your own process. You can learn from other writers, but ultimately you have to do what works for YOU. There’s no one way to write a book. If someone is toying with the idea of writing romance, I strongly suggest joining RWA—tons of great educational stuff and the membership is crazy supportive.
I used to outline each chapter and scene before I ever started writing, but I’ve become more free in recent years. I don’t’ know if it’s confidence or laziness, LOL. I do like to have a genral plan and even if I don’t make an official outline, I do some pre-writing. I often start thinking about a book months, or even years, before I start writing, so I open a new Scrivener file and make notes about the plot or characters as they come to me. By the time I sit down to start the story, I know who the characters are and basically what’s going to happen in the book. I’m open to the story changing course, though, as the characters start talking to me. That happened recently with Nashville Fling. I thought it was going to be a cute little short about a woman who wins a radio station contest “date” with her favorite country music star, and then the fake date turns into something real. By chapter two, I knew it was going to get a lot more interesting! The twist spawned the companion novella, Nashville Flirt, and the next full-length Nashville novel, Nashville Surprise.
I’m a nature girl—I love being outside as much as possible. I’m a volunteer with my kids’ scout troops, and love to hike and camp with the boys as much as my schedule allows. I’ve written quite a few outdoor love scenes, but haven’t put a lot of the hiking/camping aspect into any books, yet. This is definitely a trait I’m going to give a future character though.
I’m a big reader (obviously) and I was also a lit major in college. While I was writing Nashville Flirt, it occurred to me that the plot was a little bit reminiscent of A Midsummer Night’s Dream, so I played up that aspect in the novella, giving a couple of the characters literature backgrounds, so they could joke about the similarities, too. If you can squeeze Shakespeare into a romance novel, it’s a good thing J
Several! My all-time favorite romance novels are A Knight In Shinning Armor by Jude Deveraux and A Matter of Class by Mary Balogh. I could read both over and over again (and have!) and never get tired of them. I cry at the end every single time! My favorite writing book is On Writing by Stephen King. I read that about once a year and find something new every time.
As I mentioned, Nashville Surprise is my current work-in-progress. Sarah, the heroine, is very regimented. She is a PhD candidate, she has a plan for her life. She doesn’t do things off the cuff, like her sister, Emily. But when life throws an unexpected curveball at her, she has to react to the change in plans and figure out what her next move is. It’s uncomfortable for her-definitely far, far, outside her comfort zone. And the guy involved is not someone she’d ever see herself falling in love with—not in a million years! I’m really enjoying this project and hope readers will, too! I’m planning an August release. Readers can visit my website and sign up for my newsletter for latest release date information.
I love reading a series and I love writing a series! Even though all my Nashville novel-length books are stand-alone stories, it’s really, really fun to bring back characters from previous books. The challenge is keeping the history and timeline consistent. I often have to go back to previous books to check the name of a place or a character or the timeline of something. For Nashville Flirt, I had to have Nashville Fling open at the same time, since both novellas take place on the same night—each book is from one sister’s point of view. That was so much fun to write!
13. Anything else you might want to add?
For readers who may not have tried any of the books in my Nashville series yet, I wanted to let you know that I’ve bundled all five of the novels, plus the two novellas, into a special blog tour collection! It’ll only be available for a limited time and is available at all the usual retailers. I’m taking it down after the blog tour ends, so this is your chance to get caught up on the series at a bargain price!
When Harper Perry’s latest Hollywood debacle blows up the internet, the fallen starlet returns home to Nashville…and the man she left behind. She needs someone to make her Tennessee home livable–someone who will be discreet while she lays low and lets all the negative press blow over. Former lover Dan Ryan is just the handy man for the job. With her personal life being primetime tabloid fodder, her career on the skids, and her concert tour facing cancellation, Harper has a lot to figure out. The last thing she needs is the irresistibly sexy handyman working his way back into her life…and her bed.
Dan Ryan has never forgotten the girl who left town the second he confessed his feelings for her ran deeper than the sizzling hot hours they spent burning up the sheets. And with half a dozen women on speed dial, he’s tried! But once he sees Harper again, he knows why no other woman has ever touched his heart–he gave it away to Harper years earlier. Now that she’s back in town, however briefly, Dan is determined not to let Harper get away a second time…even if he has to give up everything he’s worked for to keep her.
“One more thing.”
He moved into her space, crowding her against the counter. His body pressed into hers, making her suck in a deep breath. He looked down at her, stroked the line of her jaw. Her body responded with a delicious shiver.
“What?” she managed to get out, fighting the urge to grab a handful of his tight t-shirt and pull him even closer.
He bent his head slowly, not taking his eyes off hers, giving her a chance to protest, to move out of the way, to tell him to stop.
But she didn’t do any of those things.
Instead, she let her eyelids drift closed and leaned into him. He kissed her softly at first, just nibbling at her lips, teasing her, making her want more. Then he dipped inside and she tasted the sweet pastry. She let out a sigh and prepared to settle into the kiss, but just as quickly as the kiss had begun, it was over.
Dan pulled back. “This is something else we need to discuss,” he said, stepping away.
“How much you want me. And what we’re going to do about it.” He grinned at her. “See you at lunch.”
He sauntered out the back door, whistling, and a moment later, Harper heard his truck pull out of the driveway.
And then she felt him back up a step.
“The bed is ready to go, if you wondered,” he said, his voice huskier than it had been a minute ago. “Mel asked me to buy some bedroom furniture for you and bring it out, since the house was empty. I set everything up in your old room.”
His eyes blazed and Harper knew he was remembering all the nights they’d spent not sleeping in her old bed.
She swallowed hard. “Thanks.”
He nodded once, then took his toolbox and headed out the back door.
AUTHOR Bio and Links:
Bethany Michaels is the author of over a dozen steamy contemporary novels as well as a few Regency-set historicals and light paranormals. The first book in her “Naughty in Nashville” steamy country music series, Nashville Heat, was a finalist in RT Magazine’s Reviewers’ Choice awards for Best Small Press Erotic Romance.
She also creates cover art for indie authors through Dragonfly Press Design (www.dragonflypressdesign.com).
When not writing, Bethany enjoys movies, travelling, the outdoors, volunteering with her kids’ scout troops and visiting the cool places around Nashville where her books are set. A native Hoosier, she now lives in Nashville, Tennessee with her husband and children.
Amazon Author Page (US): http://www.amazon.com/Bethany-Michaels/e/B0035SF1EE/ref=sr_tc_2_0?qid=1423733835&sr=8-2-ent
Amazon Author Page (UK): http://www.amazon.co.uk/Bethany-Michaels/e/B0035SF1EE/ref=ntt_athr_dp_pel_1
Blog: https://biosgraphy.com/#user/2107Paste author bio and any included links here
GIVEAWAY INFORMATION and RAFFLECOPTER CODE
Bethany Michaels will be awarding a Naughty in Nashville prize pack(paperback copies of all five Nashville books plus lots of local Nashville goodies, US and International) to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour,and a $10 Amazon or Barnes and Noble GC to a randomly drawn host.
Please use this rafflecopter code on your post: