We most heartily welcome contemporary romance author Annette Bower to today’s Writer Wednesday!
It’s a joy and pleasure to have her here on what is a rather chilly spring day in Virginia. I hope the weather is better where you are. But wait – who cares about the weather when there’s romance to discuss?? So read on…
Thank you, Margaret, for hosting me today on Writer Wednesday.
You ask what inspires me to write and my answer is relationships.
Recently while on a trip, I captured this couple that provided story questions.
In this picture both people are looking in the same direction. His hand is on her thigh. Her hand is covering his, her knee is pointed toward him, and her dangling shoe indicates she’s relaxed and if she thrusts her foot in and out of the shoe, it provides a phallic sign. Therefore, she may have more invested in this relationship right now. She seems to indicate that she’s feeling all loving and ready for love. Other than his hand on her thigh, his knee is pointed away from her toward what is happening. He seems removed for the moment. My question to myself is what happened before this moment and what is happening now and what will happen in the next hour? (Reference: The Definitive Book of Body Language by Allan and Barbara Pease.)
As you can tell by what inspires me to write, it is also gaining knowledge.
Another question you asked is one interesting thing I learned in researching/writing my soon-to-be released novel.
Tiffany George in Fearless Destiny is a fresco artist. This art form was first discovered in 1500 BC in Crete and is found all around the world. Because of the chemical makeup of the plaster, the pigment becomes a part of the art. And the mural becomes integral to the wall. Tiffany is a contemporary artist who uses this old technique in a new way. I relate fresco painting to our experiences in life which become part of who we are. You can learn more here: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fresco
Margaret, advice I wish I had when first starting out was to keep at it.
It’s hard when the story doesn’t find a publisher or agent. Or my experience in my first group pitch to a Harlequin editor who threw her hands in the air and said, “I don’t know how I’d market something like that.” Or when you keep revising and you feel as if you’ve lost the story.
As many writers have said, you have to show up so your muse can. Keep your faith. Believe in yourself. If you sell to millions or hundreds, someone has shared your story, had a brief reprieve from life, and perhaps has taken something away with them making up part of the fresco of their life. That is something for a writer to be proud of.
I know I’m proud that Moving On helped readers find their way back to reading. I know I’m proud that readers think before they judge people by their outer appearance because of Woman of Substance. I know I’m grateful that readers have joined me between the pages of my novels.
My favorite romance novel of all time is inside out girl by Tish Cohen. It has everything I love. Contemporary fiction, with an extra-ordinary problem, two people given a second chance at love and family. My most favorite kind of life romance. I’ve read it often.
I like to recommend Jeanne Ray. I enjoyed her books Julie and Romeo and Julie and Romeo Get Lucky because they were about an older couple having another chance at love and life together as a couple. I also enjoyed Jeanne Ray’s recent novel, Calling Invisible Women. Sometimes I want to read closer to my own age, with my experiences, and know that if I should find myself single that there is hope for another relationship. Some younger readers may be interested in reading about the older women in their lives with sensitivity and humor.
Thank you, Margaret, for the opportunity to participate in Writer Wednesday.
And now, an excerpt from Fearless Destiny, soon to be released by Soul Mate Publishers:
Turning onto the highway that led into Apex, Tiffany George saw an abandoned gray compact car. Her father’s voice rang in her ears, Don’t drive by stalled cars on the highway. You never know who needs you. Slowing to a stop, she grabbed her flashlight and tucked her cell phone into her pocket.
She expected to see an empty vehicle. Tiffany felt like an unprepared Girl Scout when the light illuminated dark eyes. A hand pushed through black hair. His discomfort was obvious. His shoulders braced against the seat.
“Can I help you?” she called through the window.
“I’m not sure.” His jaw muscles tensed, while he shaded his eyes against the flashlight.
“I’m going to open the door.” Her forearms and biceps bulged, her sandals skidded on gravel but the driver door wouldn’t budge.
“Locking system jammed.” His speech was slurred.
“That doesn’t happen. Have you been drinking?” She sniffed for alcohol.
“What kind of pain?” She watched him with first-responder alertness. “Heart attack?”
“No.” He bent down toward the floor.
Growing up as her father’s helper in the family plumbing business, Tiffany knew her way around vehicles.
His head slumped onto the headrest. “Okay, Mister, tell me what’s happening.”
“Muscle cramps in both legs.” He sucked air through his teeth. “Need to get out of this sardine tin.”
“Push on your knees,” she said calmly.
“Thanks, Nurse Nancy. I’ve tried. I need out.”
Tiffany rolled her eyes. “Pull the hood latch.”
She stomped across the highway. Thanks, Dad. Just what an act of kindness needs, a jerk. She parked her car bumper to bumper, broke a nail clipping on booster cables, and started her car. Then she was back at his window. “Turn on the ignition.”
Links to two previous novels:
Woman of Substance: Amazon
Moving On: Amazon
A bit on Annette:
Annette Bower’s day-to-day experiences as a nurse, administrator, town councillor, teacher’s assistant and student means that her stories are the real thing because they are about you and your neighbours. Her short stories and novels are read around the world. Her romance novels are set in Saskatchewan because she believes home is as exotic as anywhere else in the wide world she has visited.
Want to connect further with Annette? Find her here:
Thanks so much for joining us, Annette! It was a delight to host you.