We’re officially kicking off the Month long blog party today! Our first guest is New York Times Bestselling author Phoebe Conn and she is giving away a free pdf copy of FIERCE LOVE! She is also adding a copy into the Saturday Giveaway that Nikki will do. The details on the party, prizes and how the giveaways work are here. You can also enter another contest here by spreading the word about the party!
Now, on to Phoebe’s addition!
Phoebe Conn is a New York Times bestselling author who adores romance. She writes adventure-laced historicals, futuristic books with heroines adept at space travel and contemporary romances with a touch of suspense.
I love to read and belong to three monthly book clubs. Thursday’s group loves mysteries and avoids non-fiction. Monday’s tends to choose what is referred to as Women’s Fiction. The Sunday group picks far more challenging fiction and non-fiction. We’re reading HALF THE SKY by Nicholas D. Kristof and Sheryl WuDunn, a Pulitzer prize winning couple. It’s a riveting account of the plight of women in developing countries and was recently featured as a two night series on PBS.
The Sunday group has the most exciting discussions, and we make a quick check-in of what’s new in everyone’s life. At our last meeting, our one male member was in New York attending his high school reunion, so we felt free to discuss dating, which we don’t usual do when he’s there. We’re all single, some of us looking for love, others quiet about it if they are. My dating stories would make great skits for Saturday Night Live, and when they stopped laughing, my book club thought I really should put my latest memorable date in a book.
Occasionally a man will ask if I date to gather material for my romance novels, and I assure him absolutely never. Frankly, most men aren’t that exciting, but I don’t dare tell them that. I’ve belonged to several on-line dating services, as have my book club friends. One man who came up as a match lived not too far from me, which is a big plus in Los Angeles suburbs. I’m near Pasadena, and he was too, so we got together for coffee one afternoon. He is an attorney, and this is the only time I’ve ever received a note with the word pursuant in it.
He arrived with the hiccups and drank tea with honey to get rid of them. It didn’t work, but that’s a minor problem. Men want to impress women, and let’s face it, their favorite subject is themselves, but this man regaled me for an hour with stories about money. He’d wanted to move, bought a four million dollar house, put two million into renovations and then decided he didn’t want to live there. He was only able to sell it for $5,900,000. “What a shame,” I murmured sympathetically. He assured me it was a loss and tax write-off.
That’s only a tidbit of our conversation, or his conversation, I should say. He spent a great deal of the time talking about a woman he’d been engaged to. He’d bought her a $100,000 diamond ring, but got it for only $50,000 in Los Angeles’s jewelry district. When they broke up, she’d sold it, bought a new car and had her house painted. He didn’t think she’d gotten what it was really worth. I could only nod. He asked if I’d like to go to dinner with him and mentioned a really nice restaurant. I hoped there was something more to him than money, and I said I would, not really expecting him to call.
He did call and picked me up in a new BMW sedan. It was a tax write-off because he needed a car to get to court. He impressed me with his concern for his personal injury clients, but soon after we’d ordered dinner, he finally switched topics and chose politics. I’m as liberal as it’s possible to be, and he asked, “Didn’t I tell you I was a conservative?”
If he had, I wouldn’t have been there. (He’d won $2,900 on a $1,000 off-track bet that afternoon and urged me to order whatever I wanted.) Gag.
After a really uncomfortable dinner, I bid him good night. He sent me an email saying he’d really like to see me again. I was flattered, but pointed out our political views didn’t match. He didn’t care. He liked me. I’d had enough. What particularly bothered me were not only his inane views, but he didn’t care at all what I thought. That was a waving red flag if I ever saw one. The whole interlude would make a good scene for a heroine to suffer through on the way to true love, but I’ll probably never use it. It was a fun story to tell at book club, but not something I’d care to spend more time on writing.
My May 2012 book from Samhain Publishing, FIERCE LOVE, was inspired by a family friend who married a bullfighter’s daughter. When we received the wedding invitation, I wrote A Bullfighter’s Daughter in my idea file. Most editors cringed at a story with a matador hero, even if no bullfights were in the book. My editor at Samhain responded, “I love matadors!” The second book in the series, FIERCE PRIDE, a February 2013 release, is the story of the matador’s son, and I’m working on FIERCE PASSION, the story of the matador’s mistress. These books have really been a treat to write and while the matador’s family is wealthy, they never mention money.
Here’s the link!
Remember, all you have to do to be entered in the Saturday giveaway is chat!