I've got a wonderful treat, and no tricks, for you today! On Monday, I reviewed the newly released SEDUCING MR. KNIGHTLY by Maya Rodale. If you haven't read my review yet, please click on the title and do so but hurry back because Miss Maya is about to join us followed by a fabulous Giveaway!
Maya Rodale is now the author of numerous “dazzlingly sexy and witty” historical romance novels. A champion of the romance genre and its readers, she is also the author of the non-fiction book Dangerous Books For Girls: The Bad Reputation Of Romance Novels, Explained and a co-founder of Lady Jane’s Salon, a national reading series devoted to romantic fiction. Maya is also, what I affectionately call her, my muse for this blog. It was because of her being such a champion of the romance genre and its readers that I was inspired to write a rant that set me on the course of unwrapping romance, romance novels and their authors. I adore this lady and her books aren't half-bad either. *wink*
Please join me in welcoming Maya Rodale to UNWRAPPING ROMANCE,
Maya: Hi there! Glad to be here!
Amy: I have to admit this is a long overdue visit and I'm so thrilled to have you here today. Perhaps you'd like to tell us a little bit about yourself for those who don't know you yet.
Maya: My name is Maya and I’m living the dream! I write smart and sassy historical romance novels. I married an actual Englishman, you know, for research (Just kidding! It’s a love match!). My constant companion is my darling dog, Penelope. We all live in New York City.
Amy: I have to admit that your life certainly does sound like the dream, I know I'd trade places with you in a heartbeat - well, maybe not the domestic life part. I'll let you keep your rogue. *wink*
Maya: Aww! I’m so humbled and happy to know my blogging has been so inspiring!
Amy: I love that! I get a kick out of your mom making you do it but I love that you write because you want that imaginative world to continue. I know that feeling well, as I'm sure many of your readers do.
Maya: I love Loretta Chase and Eloisa James (and many other historical authors). I also love contemporaries by Julie James or Jenny Crusie. I’m always inspired to write and revise an even better book after reading such fantastic, perfectly crafted novels.
Amy: Well, you certainly can't lose with such awesome writing models as inspiration.
Maya: Thank you! I love those girls. They came about when I was living in London doing research for my master’s degree. I was reading a lot of 19th century newspapers and walking around the city and searching for a new series idea. I think I started with the newspaper and thought, what kind of women would do such a scandalous thing? And then, who would their perfect heroes be?
Funny thing is, I found a scrap of paper with exactly the same idea to center a series around the newspaper The London Weekly but it was from, like, 3 years earlier and I had totally forgotten about it. In short, the Writing Girls were an idea so nice I thought it twice!
Amy: Indeed it was and we are very glad you had that idea twice!
Maya: That’s a great question and a lovely way to describe Annabelle! I relate to that aspect of her, too. There’s always something of me in my heroines and it provides a snapshot of my life when I was writing. Eliza’s ambition, for example. Or Annabelle learning to take risks and stand up for herself.
Amy: That's wonderful and insightful. So now you're closing out the series with SEDUCING MR. KNIGHTLY. Derek Knightly and Annabelle have been with us throughout. Was it planned from the beginning to pair up these two and save them for last or was this something that your muse whispered in your ear along the way?
Maya: Oh, I had plans for them from the very beginning! J I knew from the initial pitch of the series that Annabelle would seek advice from her readers and try all those crazy suggestions on how to get a man’s attention. I knew from the start that her hero would be Knightly.
However, I hadn’t fully developed their characters until I sat down to write it and it was a lovely experience for me to really explore them and what kept them from getting together sooner. After all, Annabelle had been sighing over him for three books and everyone else knew. But with Knightly so focused on his business and Annabelle awkward about drawing attention to herself, they never got to know each other. That is, until Annabelle starts making it impossible for Knightly to not see her.
I’ve been so excited to write this book ever since A Groom Of One’s Own (don’t tell the other Writing Girls!) and it was such a pleasure to write it.
Amy: That's so amazing and I think it's probably one of the reasons why this story was so wonderful and touching. And something tells me the other Writing Girls won't mind - they do so love Annabelle, as do we.
Maya: Yes! In fact—here’s some breaking news for you—I will be writing contemporaries in the future! But those stories will be inextricably linked to a new series of historical romance novels.
Amy: Really! Well, can you tell us a bit more about this new direction in Maya's writing world?
Maya: New series! In a word: wallflowers. In two words: wicked wallflowers. I’ll be posting news and sneak peeks on mywebsite and on Facebook.
Amy: Awesome news and I'm sure everyone will anxious to learn more about these wicked wallflowers - I know I will.
Last question and the one I love asking most - IF you could be ANY character in ANY book, who would it be and why?
Maya: Oh my goodness, I have been mulling over this question for days and I simply could not decide, which is probably why I’m author: I can be lots of characters in many books.
Amy: Well, can't ask for a more sensible answer than that. Maya, you've been a wonderful inspiration to me, and I thank you so much for that.
Maya: Thank you so much!!!!
Amy: Maya has graciously provided a print copy of Charlotte's story - THREE SCHEMES AND A SCANDAL - as well as 2 beautiful SEDUCING MR. KNIGHTLY coverflats and they're all signed! So Happy Halloween everyone - you have a chance to win one of these three (3) awesome prizes and Maya will provide a question for you to answer when you enter. Maya?
Maya: Who are some of your favorite and most inspiring Writing Girls? They can be real, fictional, or even unpublished.
Amy: Great question, Maya, thank you. Well, you heard the lady, so what's your answer?
Grand Prize: 1 print copy of THREE SCHEMES AND A SCANDAL by Maya Rodale
Enter the Regency world of the Writing Girls series in Maya Rodale's charming tale of a scheming lady, a handsome second son, and the trouble they get into when the perfect scandal becomes an even more perfect match.
Scheme: A folly, a swan, a little lie . . . a compromising position
Lady Charlotte Brandon is always up to something . . . but somehow her best schemes for matchmaking often end in disaster.
Scheme: A family feud, outrageously false rumors, a shattered priceless vase . . . an even more compromising position
It's no wonder she's considered by at least one devastatingly handsome man to be devious, destructive, and dangerously appealing.
Scheme: A fox, a rabbit, a childhood foe, and a dashing rogue . . . the proposal to end all proposals
It's high time someone turned the tables on the lovely Lady Charlotte, and James Beauchamp is just the man to do it. Even if it means beating Charlotte at her devious game with a scandalous scheme of his own.
2 signed coverflats for SEDUCING MR. KNIGHTLY (they are gorgeous!!)
* In order to qualify to be entered to win, you MUST comment and leave a valid email address so that I can notify you when you win. Remember the formula:
* This Giveaway is open to US RESIDENTS ONLY (void where prohibited)
To learn more about Maya and her wonderful books, please feel free to visit her website, follow her on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and Goodreads.
Happy Reading Everyone!
SEDUCING MR. KNIGHTLY by Maya Rodale, Avon Romance, available now in print and ebook formats.
THREE SCHEMES AND A SCANDAL, a novella by Maya Rodale, Avon Impulse, available now in ebook format and print will be available Nov 6, 2012.
Be sure to check out the other Writing Girl books if you haven't already. : )