Tuesday, February 02, 2010

Feelin' Good



There's a song I've always loved called Feeling Good. I first heard Sammy Davis Jr cover it(yes, I am giving away my age) when I was a teenager. It's about changing, about starting again. The refrain goes as follows:
It's a new dawn
It's a new day
It's a new life for me
Feelin' good.

Kind of says everything about my first blog for Grand Central Cafe. Anybody who recognizes my name might know I've written a few forensic suspenses, some short stories and one romantic fantasy with Jen Cruise and Anne Stuart. If you know I also have a pseudonym, Kathleen Korbel, you'll know that I've also spent the better part of twenty years in contemporary romance, romantic suspense and again, romantic fantasy. Now, it seems, I'm moving off into another new direction. I'm wading right into historic romance.
It isn't a new story in publishing. We're always reinventing ourselves. Our muses have been known to skip around like toddlers in a park. Muses are like that. Certainly mine is. It might be because I'm a trauma nurse. We tend to be impatient and restless. It might be because I have ADD. It might be because I've always read every genre and wanted to write in them all. I guess it was only a matter of time before I stepped back in time.

So how did I arrive here? To tell the truth, I've been flirting with it forever. I love historical romance. I love the challenge of writing what is reallly a modern heroine within the limits of historical constraints. Okay, I even like the clothes. And my favorite period has always been the Regency era. Not just the Georgette Heyer and Austen Regency, the Richard Sharpe and Horatio Hornblower Regency. It's actually how I discovered the period. I'm from a family of 10, 7 of us men. I never knew who Shirley Temple was til she was a delegat to the UN. On the other hand, I know every movie John Wayne died in. So, yes, I love a little action. A bit of battle, a nefarious spy or two, a race against time. My problem was that I stunk at research.

It's only taken me twenty years to figure it out. Not only that, I learned to travel for research. Okay, maybe it's an excuse. But tell me what other job would encourage me to ride elephants in India and track fairies in Ireland. I can't think of anything I enjoy more, except writing the stories those experiences inspired.

So here I am, and my first book for Grand Central comes out in July. Entitled BARELY A LADY, it begins the DRAKE"S RAKES series with the story of Olivia Grace, who stumbles over her estranged husband on the battlefield of Waterloo...in an enemy uniform. After that, things get complicated. Yes, there is a battle, and there are nefarious spies, and a couple who has been apart for four years, but never really stopped loving each other. It's about survival and loyalty and okay, it's about the undying passion one man has for the woman he loved. It moves from Waterloo to the ballrooms of Mayfair, and introduces some of my favorite characters I've ever written. And it has given me an excuse to return to England and Ireland this spring, and hopefully, soon, India, where I plan to climb the Himalayas and discover more characters.

So it's a new dawn, it's a new day, it's a new life for me, and yes. I'm feeling good. As for the photo, you're just going to have to settle for that until I can get my cover up. But I figure that if you aren't already in love with Regency adventure, Sean Bean should get you there.