A few words about my writing:
Why romance? And what is that, anyway?
Remember reading under the covers with a flashlight when you were a child, simply because you couldn't wait to find out what happened next? Those books were almost always stories driven primarily by imagination, tales of self-discovery through adventure, where justice triumphs over all odds. When the adventure is for adults and true love is the reward, that, simply put, is romance!
Thus the most important ingredients in my stories are always a to-die-for hero and his passionate romance with an interesting heroine. Yet my novels are never simplistic.
My writing is often described with words like intelligent, passionate, sexy, and sophisticated, but it's also rich in humor and intrigue. I like to involve my characters in situations of real danger and high emotional stakes, where they're forced to grow and change. (So, though I promise to keep you turning the pages, you wont find an extremely light read to skim through in an hour.)
My books also tend to echo some of the myth and history that I absorbed in my childhood in England. I love languagejust the rhythm and sweep of itand stories where love triumphs over adversity, and good wins the day.
Above all, my goal as a romance writer is to have glorious funyet also to create a novel with enough depth to be worth reading over and over again. It's the hardest work I've ever done in my life, but when you tell me that I've moved, pleased, thrilled, or entertained you, it's all worthwhile.
My first six books are not-quite-traditional Regency romances, known as "The Rewards" and written as Jean R. Ewing. They are shorter than my later historical romances and have a different style, taking you into the story more gently, perhaps. They're also more discreet about what happens in the bedroom, though they're still full of adventure, passion, and intrigue.
My next eight novels are longer, more complex, sexy historical romances set in either the Regency, or the flamboyant world of Georgian England in the 1760's. Berkley/Jove was so excited by my first long Regency-set historical romance, Illusion, thatin an unprecedented move for themthey released it as a lead title.
Illusion was followed by a sequel, Flowers under Ice (a double award-winner), then My Dark Prince, my first book written as Julia Ross. Beginning with The Seduction, Berkley released my next five novels as gorgeous trade paperbacks, each later reissued in mass-market size.
After Clandestine, my eighth historical romance, my editor at Berkley asked me to write a different kind of novel, one about a real English queen. At first, the opportunity to try something new was exciting. My editor, agent, and I spent some fun hours tossing around ideas.
Yet my muse refused to share in all the excitement. Whenever I tried to work one of these "great ideas" into a new novel she wouldn't cooperate, as if she were secretly entertaining thoughts of rebellion. I started to feel a bit panicky. This had never happened to me before. Instead of the joy and pleasure I'd always found in writing, I began to dread sitting down at the keyboard.
Meanwhile, my editor was looking forward to my next proposal. My agent was ready to negotiate my next contract. My readers were writing to tell me how much they'd loved Clandestine and how they couldn't wait to see what was coming nextand I had nothing! If I didn't come up with a good idea soon, I was going to let down a lot of people, and I especially couldn't bear the thought of disappointing my fans.
So then I began to feel very guilty, as well. I'd invested over twelve years of my life in my writing career and never been without a contract. I'd published fourteen novels and two novellas without taking a break. Because I'd sold the first traditional Regency I'd ever written, I had no backlog of unpublished manuscripts to draw from when the pressure was on.
Yet each new idea had seemed to come magically from nowhereuntil now!
I don't mean that writing a novel wasn't always hard work. Of course it was. Nevertheless, I've always been an essentially intuitive writer. Each story was sparked by some burning idea that announced itself with a lot of power and insistence, and now there simply wasn't one.
The more I tried to force it, the less it worked, until in the end I hit a wall of creative exhaustion. I didn't have much choice except to quit writing to give my muse a chance to recover her enthusiasm. Unfortunately, publishers must work with absolute deadlines. Production schedules are locked in sometimes more than a year in advance. And I still had a living to make. So I plunged into other projectsand somehow many years rolled by.
Yet I hope you won't forget me. I'm proud of every book I've written, and I'm still finding new readers. I value each and every one of you, just as I'm truly grateful to all of my loyal fans.
Though I have no idea what or when it will beand I never talk about work in progressone day I'm sure I'll write another novel. In the meantime, there's been a revolution in publishing. So I'm thrilled to be able to begin making my books available as E-books, starting with Scandal's Reward. (I secretly hope, of course, that revisiting my novels as I do this will inspire me to write again.)
Meanwhile I was touched to the heart when one of my fans learned what was happening and e-mailed me: "Enjoy your break -- you deserve it! I think you put a lot into your books, much more than others! PLEASE write Historical Romance after your break -- same time period please, maybe bring in some Russian? I can see the prince on his large white horse with his Russian Wolfhounds running at his side..."
And who knows? Maybe I will!
Thank you, readers!
"Brilliant! The best book of any genre I have read in a long, long
while. I am in awe." -
"If you enjoy exciting, entertaining, wonderfully-written romance, read this book." - Jo Beverley
|"Your books are too clever, too intelligent, too perceptive, and too beautiful for the average romance reader. They require the reader to think while they ravish the senses...." - Personal letter from a top reviewer|
"Darkly passionate ... will surprise readers with its intelligent plot and complex themes." - *Starred Review*, Publishers Weekly"A breathtaking story with simply outstanding characters. You will laugh, you will cry, you will feel the pain and the thrill of adventure. . . . bold, real and complex . . . and the passion. Oh, the passion! I was totally entranced." - Heart Rate Reviews "Heart Beat Award"
"Powerful ... compelling... The definition of a "keeper." - The Romance Reader "Five Hearts"
"Outstanding . . . breathtaking and mesmerizing historical romance." - The Romance Journal "The Keeper Shelf"