Today Robin Covington joins in the party with a guest-blog and a giveaway!
You know, when people learn that I write hot, steamy romance novels I often get mixed reactions. Most are intrigued, some are unsure about how to react to that news, and many more ask questions. Everything from, “Where do you get your ideas?” (everywhere) to “Are you going to quit the evil day job?” (I wish). But, the most common question I get is whether the books I write are about me.
I am a forty-three year old mother of two (9 & 7 years old), a wife, attorney, girl scout volunteer, school volunteer and PTA member. Oh, and I don’t write women’s fiction.
So, the answer is no.
And that begs the question: How do I get my ideas and how do you keep it real?
One word: Research.
Now, my research for ideas and ways to get under the skin of my characters is fun. Of course it is! Why would I do this if it wasn’t fun? For my current novel, I got to pick the brain of my local undercover vice cop to see what my hero, Jackson, would have to do in order to be good at his job. I read Perez Hilton to get an idea of what it must be like for the children of famous and ambitious people to live in a fishbowl – just like my heroine, Michaela. I watched episodes of “Gossip Girl.” For other books, I’ve talked to sex phone operators (not by the minute), convicted felons, and the former assistant director for big Hollywood movies. Rough job, huh?
And, then there is my standing research into all that is young, hip and sexy. (Remember – I’m a forty three year old PTA Mom and while I am still mind-bogglingly sexy, I am not as young or as hip as I used to be.) For that, I have a subscription to Cosmopolitan magazine which I use to stay on top of the current dating and relationship scene (Seriously more complicated than when I was out there). And, I use Apps to stay on the cutting edge of today’s twenty-something. One of my favorites? Urban Dictionary. It gives me a word-a-day, allows me to create a favorites list for future reference, and makes me laugh out loud. A recent favorite:
“Splenda Daddy: A man who strives to be a Sugar Daddy but just doesn’t have the funds to pull it off.”
Love. That. Stay tuned, it will show up in a book sometime.
So, while the stories I write are not about me, I can dig into some fun research and learn enough to make the people and the settings believable. But, the most important part of touching a reader with my story is the emotional truth of my characters and I have that in spades. I have been in love. I have been heartbroken. I have been jealous and afraid. I have given someone up because I was not the one for him and I loved him too much to stay. I have stood in the white dress and known that I was looking at “The One.” Life has been one big research project when it comes to love.
I’m still working on the happily ever after . . . .
This is an exciting time for me. My debut novel, A NIGHT OF SOUHERN COMFORT, from the Indulgence line at Entangled Publishing releases on June 15th and my dream to see my work in hands of readers is finally coming true. (GIVEAWAY=>)For one commenter, I will give you a digital copy of the book when it comes out!
Thanks for stopping by Robin! See more from her on:
Twitter (@RobinCovington): http://www.Twitter.com/RobinCovington