Stories come in a variety of ways including the urban-myth of a writer who saw dew on a rose one morning and was inspired to write a 400 page best selling novel. Yeah, right.
For me stories come in pieces. As they come I make notes because sometimes I don’t realize it’s the same plot just a different character’s take on the situation.
Hell On The Heart gave me the villain first.
My secret guilty sin is I like to read erotica. But after a few stories, I noticed a trend in the boy meets girl saga. The women had no trouble with the trust factor. To summarize the theme: within five pages of meeting, anything goes.
This has not been my experience in life.
In the books the hero was good looking, had earned a gold metal in the sexual Olympics, was financially successful and had spent his entire life waiting for the green-eyed, red-haired beauty who’s last words before being gagged were: “Let’s do it, daddy.”
What if a man had all those characteristics: looks, charm and wealth, but was intrinsically evil? What if, as contrast, the hero wasn’t pretty, rich or charming? And what if the heroine was the clever one of the three?
Mix in a few other issues like Gypsies, Native Americans, Federal Agents, white slave trading, murder and you’ve got a novel.
Caught In The Middle, on the other hand, began as a standard romance. The heroine had been the mouthy sidekick in Dance of Passion. I understand my characters through writing. About 2/3’s of the way through the story it occurred to me that my forty-four-year-old heroine needed a family.
At the same time, a little girl who was the niece of an employee had been diagnosed with leukemia at about 18 months. We’d spent a year and a half hoping for a miracle as she danced with the disease that inevitably shuffled two steps forward, then bounced three steps back. Eventually we were reduced to watching her die. In my story I gave her a different ending – the one she’s deserved – a chance to grow up in a loving family.
I tear-up when I talk about this story, not because through fiction I saved her, but because real life didn’t follow the script. Which is why I write romance. There are events that need a happily-ever-after ending.
We live in a time of uncertainty. Dangers we never believed existed are now very real. At a recent conference the speaker said romantic suspense sells well when we don’t believe anything bad can happen to us. When threatened we invent heroes that are bigger than life. During the depression and into WWII, superheroes came of age. They could protect us from everything bad that was happening in the world.
We are now seeing a rise in movies of the superhero – Thor, Spiderman, Ironman, Batman, Captain America. But we are also seeing a rise in paranormal books and movies. Why? I think because vampires are stronger than humans and have supernatural qualities. The hero may begin the book as a blood sucking bad guy, but eventually with the love of a good woman they become a blood-sucking good guy. Or at least that’s my take on it.
We need a good story to let us escape the sorrows in our lives, an adventure that lets us travel to a new world, see new vistas and cope with problems other than our own. Books are on the decline and reading on the rise.
If you see it differently, I’d like to hear your ideas.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR…Nancy Brophy grew up reading and writing.
Her imaginary friends have rich, larger-than-life lives with definite beginnings, snappy middles, and above all, happy endings. Her personal life is never as clearly defined. Beginnings are hard to locate. A new job, a school term, a family event like a death or wedding might signal the start of something new, but it’s never heralded with any fanfare. It appears as just another link in the chain.
She lives in the beautiful, green and very wet Northwest with her husband, two naughty dogs, PB and J, and forty rowdy chickens.
Like all marriages they’ve had their ups and downs, more good times than bad. Most recently they spent fourteen nail-biting months living in an apartment while their house was rebuilt from a house-fire in 2010. In the process she have acquired an in-depth knowledge of kitchen cabinets, bathroom plumbing fixtures and leaking roofs. If this writing thing doesn’t work out, she plans to investigate becoming a contractor who specializes in on-time, under-budget remodels. There is a fortune to be made by the builder who can deliver on his promises.
Her stories are about pretty men and strong women, about families that don’t always work and about the joy of finding love and the difficulty of making it stay.
A romantic suspense with gypsies, forensics, mystery, and more…
Hell on the Heart by Nancy Brophy is a compelling romantic suspense that not only delves into the sinister world of human trafficking but also presents a fascinating look at how a community of gypsies keeps one foot firmly in their magical world while mastering the high tech potentials of forensic science. This may sound hard to follow, or overly intense, but it’s wonderfully presented and well paced. The story is strong and the suspense is interesting and creative.
- Terri Patrick (from Amazon reviews)
Agent John Stillwater’s scarred face reflects the life of man dedicated to protecting his country. Currently his team is dealing with a nationwide white slavery ring, but lack evidence to prove it. An unusual set of circumstances in a nowhere town in Texas leads John to investigate.
Cain McIntosh’s career is making him rich. In his chauffeur-driven limo, his tailored suits, his ten thousand dollar watch and his private jet, Cain visits different towns each week and finds the girl of his dreams. Or so he says as he convinces her to come home with him and meet his family. Unfortunately, the girl who agrees to go, knowing she will be the envy of her friends, is never heard from again.
Can a petite gypsy woman bring down a man the FBI can’t find? Agent Stillwater isn’t giving her a chance to find out. Like it or not, Stillwater plans to remain glued to her side. With her family watching his every move, it doesn’t take tarot cards to read the heat between them.