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Tag Archives: Romance Writers of America

R is for Romance – In Every Genre

Kindle version here.

Kindle version here.

Inspired by the A to Z Blog Challenge.

Check out my Goodreads “Read” list and you’ll find a lot of romance. Maybe it’s my favorite genre or at least quick read genre. I do like every book to have a bit in it. While enjoying a sci-fy like Ender’s Game, dystopian like Divergent, or post-apocalyptic like Glimmer of Hope, I can’t help imagining where a romance might be or where the hints of one is going. (Did anyone else think Petra liked Ender? And by “like” I mean like-liked.) 😉

Sometimes I even get to influence the making of romance. While I write Romantic Suspense, my husband’s stories are more graphic Adventure. Glimmer of Hope is the first novel in his Land of Tomorrow series and the main character is married. Nathan loves Bethany…that’s great, BUT they also have two teenage sons. (Spoiler Alert) As the family treks across post-nuclear North American, the sons help rescue a group of female slaves.

Read Divergent here to see what the movie missed.

Read Divergent here to see what the movie missed.

In my mind that is the perfect opportunity for budding romance. Unfortunately, Glimmer of Hope was already huge (2  books in 1 essentially), so the romance had to wait till Book Two, Children of Wrath, and even then it takes a sideline. At least it is there, though.

Then in No Kinda Life, hubby’s Texas Ranger rides into town and finds a beautiful woman under the thumb of the suspect Mayor (kinda Book of Eli-esque), and I see the opportunity for romance. Again, it’s a sideline and doesn’t turn out the way one expects, but somehow I am very proud for encouraging this extra element in the story. The battles he creates are terrific, there is just this one thing that was missing and now isn’t as often.

Visit the post-apocalyptic Republic of Texas.

Visit the post-apocalyptic Republic of Texas.

What I learned when I joined Romance Writers of America is that the genre is defined by the lovers getting together in the end (see RWA genre elements here). But is that the end of the first book or the end of the series? RWA seems to say the end of the book. I can’t quite get on board with that, although I see the importance of drawing the line.

Still I tend to want to see the barest hint of romance in whatever I read, and indeed do see it when it might not even exist. The possibility of romance improves every genre, in my opinion. It is an element that even hard-core action writers should consider including. Why is it important in the larger scheme of life and literature? Check out Wild At Heart to find out.

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Kristin and Ryan King are married authors who hope to someday meld their writing strengths in a zombie romance with great battles.

Click photo to connect with me on Goodreads.

Click photo to connect with me on Goodreads.

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“That’s My Book She Wrote” RWA

The Romance Writers of America January Report was an instant must read for me. The article that caught my eye? “That’s My Book She Wrote!” by Erin Quinn and Kris Kennedy. What would they say about stolen inspiration, similarities in fiction and too much of the same?

See, I had a friend who wrote a vampire romance about 12 years ago. It had a love triangle, good and bad vamps, and old order group who lived in a little town in Italy my friend had visited numerous times and absolutely adored, Volterra. My friend didn’t get her book published, that didn’t stop her from feeling as if Stephanie Meyer stole her town in Italy (Images here). What sort of crazy coincidence is that?

Apparently, it’s the kind that happens every few minutes. It remind of me of the time I went to a writers critique group that never had vampire pieces except mine. That night there were three, and one of them even featured a blind a character, just like my new novel.

Or there was the time I finished my first novel and was doing edits, at which point I decided I was inspirationally safe enough to watch my first Vampire Diaries episode on TV, only to discover one of my vampire brothers shared the same name as one in the show. Rats! I spent a long time researching lore before choosing that daggone name. So what did I do? I went back to the drawing board (research from another angle) and changed it.

Now I refuse to read (or watch) whatever genre I’m currently writing. Changes may still need to be made, but I feel true to my story.

Thanks RWA for an in-depth article on this common phenomenon and to romance authors Quinn and Kennedy. I’m sure many share the relief and interest this piece inspired.

 
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Posted by on January 9, 2014 in On Writing

 

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Tis the Season Reading: Poem 4 Gifts

Christmas in the post-War United States

Christmas in the post-War United States (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Holidays are meant to be special, and one thing I like about my Maryland Writers Association critique group is that I get to see what folks creative with words do for these special events. For instance, our group once edited a contract with the devil for a soul.  That writer was going to a party as Satan and carrying a quite detailed, LOL funny, and a touch scary contract. Yikes!

 

As our December meeting, one participant brought us each a Christmas Tree cookie from Panera’s (yum!) to which she attached a poem about the season. Her name is Brenda Elmore, a poet, humorist, and essayist whose work you might catch in Baltimore/Annapolis area publications. She graciously allowed me to share the poem with you (i.e. used by permission).

 

Christmas © Copyright 2013 by Brenda Elmore.

 

It’s always the same thing, every single d***ed year;

I think Christmas is far off, then it’s suddenly here!

And nothing is done, not the shopping, the baking,

the cards, nor the wrappings, the cleaning! It’s taking

me all by surprise though I knew it was coming,

an I’m panicked and stressed, yet I find myself humming.

It’s the carols, the music that soothes as it chimes

through my heart, through my mind–

How I love Christmas time!

Special thanks to Brenda and to all my writers group pals. You guys keep me going and improving in terms of writing, editing, and reading for skill all year round. I hope my input is of benefit to you as well.

 

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Kristin King is a member of The Maryland Writers Association and the Romance Writers of America. Her imprint Three Kings Publishing can be found here. Three Kings is a Mom & Pop publisher of Christian writers (not necessarily Christian books).

 

 
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Posted by on December 23, 2013 in Christmas, Freebies Alert

 

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The Next Big Thing Blog Hop

One aspect of writing I enjoy is getting to know other authors and aspirants. There is a terrific community of support, encouragement and sharing. My own interactions in that community began when I attended the Unicorn Writers Conference last spring, and now branch through FB groups, indie writers networks, Linked-In and beyond.  A blog hop is one way to share and support one another’s creative endeavors.

So when Cynthia P. Willow, author of a recent holiday hit entitled Hell’s Christmas, asked our FB group for authors interested in doing a blog hop, I jumped on board. These leaps along my author journey force me out of my comfort zone, force me to learn. For instance, I have no idea how to embed links in this blog, by the time it’s due I’m hoping I’ll have it figured out. That skill will improve my blog and ebooks as well as provide valuable support to other authors I interact with.

The Next Big Thing asks a few simple questions about the author’s WIP. I have linked to Cynthia’s blog and fellow Hop author Brad Francis‘s.

Title?

Death Taint: Begotten Bloods Book Two

Where did the idea come from?

A dream about an older woman attacked by a vampire as she walked home from her waitressing job kick started the series. Another vampire descends on them and tries to save the woman mid-attack. That particular scene is not in this book but in the next one (Book Three) in the series.

Genre?

It’s paranormal suspense with a romantic core. Romance is a centerpiece of my works across genres, but according to the Romance Writers of America (Yes, I am a member), you can’t call a book romance if the couple doesn’t end up together in the end. Usually my couples have happy (for now) endings, but it’s not guaranteed.

What actors would play your character in a movie version?

Jennifer Lawrence (Hunger Games and a fellow Kentucky native) would make a great female lead and probably enjoy the challenge of portraying Desta Hamilton, a blind but fiery red head.

Jennifer Lawrence

The male lead is harder for me to peg. In my mind a Chris Hemsworth (Thor)/Dwayne Johnson (Fast & Furious) rolled into one would do it.

Hemsworth

Dwayne Johnson

Chess Cain is an intimidatingly large, confident flirt in the first book who gets the proverbial rug pulled out from under his life in this second installment of Begotten Bloods. Hemsworth put on 20 lbs to play Thor, so maybe he could put on more, but how would he look with Chess’s dark Italian locks?

Short Synopsis

Navigating life with a long white cane means Desta Hamilton always stands out, but she’s left the city to pursue a normal life out from under the watchful eyes of personal security. When Chess Cain arrives on her doorstep with a delivery, his rich voice charms, and her future takes a detour into danger.

Chess won his battle with self-control over 200 years ago only to find it raging anew in the presence of Desta. Vamped out, amped up, and on edge, Chess struggles for restraint little realizing that Desta’s greatest peril approaches in the form of an ancient messenger who is laying a trail of death straight to Cain.

Agency Representation

My own indie press, Three Kings Publishing

How long did it take to write the first draft?

That’s complicated since I’ve been writing three books in the series simultaneously. It’s taken well over a year, though.

What other books in the genre compare?

In the genre? Not much. Yes, there are good and bad vampires like Twilight, but nobody glistens and sensitivity to daylight is tied to age in my vampire mythology. I’ve always enjoyed the history Anne Rice built into her vampires’ back stories, so I try to get some of that in there as well. For instance, Justice Cain fought in the French Revolution and Chess was a painter’s apprentice in Renaissance Italy.

Any other in this genre?

I think the suspense and romance combination are reminiscent of The Guardian from Dee Henderson‘s O’Malley series.

Who or what inspired this WIP?

So many places and experiences inspire my work: first job at McDonalds, visiting friends back home who owned an auto repair shop, the best bachelorette party I ever attended, bowling with friends at Penn State. The list goes on and on. It doesn’t hurt that I spent 10 years living in Europe or that I go on extended road trips a couple times a year.

As for who, my inspiration and motivation for pursuing writing as a long career continues to be my husband, best friend and fellow author, Ryan KingAuthor Ryan King

Anything else to add?

Indie authors today can take their work(s) in any direction. The Begotten Blood Series will have at least three novels, two novellas, and a collection of short stories before it’s done. Where else can you do that? It’s simply a fabulous time to be writing.

Also, social media is a part of what makes this all possible. Networking with fellow authors like David van Dyke, who started a science fiction action series in 2012, and Mary C. Findley, who has homeschool books to her credit, producing a fund-raising book (Living WaterWorks) with young writers to provide clean water in Africa, giving a portion of sales to promote great causes like Future Hope Africa, Water of Life, and the 30-Hour Famine, and raising awareness in our digital world community is a great privilege and blessing for which I thank God every day.

 
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Posted by on January 2, 2013 in Book Promotion

 

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