A fascinating guest this week, with a wide portfolio, including a hint of Fantasy, Historical Romance and Mystery.
Over to you, Meredith,
Writers are told, when they’re trying to figure out how to market their work, to find their audience. Once they find their audience, once they know who it is who would be interested in reading their work, they’ll know where and how to sell to those people.
That’s great advice!
After writing for twenty years, publishing for more than ten, I definitely know who I’m writing for.
I write to please myself. I write what I love to read. The problem is that I love to read a lot of things. I read across genres. One day I’ll pick up a mystery and devour it. The next day it’ll be a vampire romance. On another day all I’ll want to read is historical fiction. Non-fiction, yes! Classical literature, count me in! There’s hardly a genre that I don’t read and enjoy (horror being the only one I can think of off the top of my head).
So when I write for myself, I’m really writing a number of audiences or strange people like myself who read just about anything as long as it sparks the imagination and captures a sense of adventure.
What that means is that I write historical, romance, fantasy, and a touch of mystery—and sometimes all at once! I’ve never written science fiction, although I enjoy reading that too. I just don’t have the science background to be able to write it believably.
So, I appeal to you Dear Reader, to expand your horizons with me.
Take a strange journey with me in this world of my creation. I won’t ask very much of you, just that you open your mind and let me in for a brief time. You might be amused.
I bet you’re wondering about that historical-romance-fantasy-mystery story I alluded to earlier, aren’t you? How could anyone shove all that into one book? Easy!
Imagine, if you will, the Regency times in England—that would be the early 19th century when King George III was declared mad and his fun-loving son took over as Prince Regent. You know it. It was when everyone who could afford it aped the prince, his love of clothes, theatre, dancing and fantastic dinner parties. (We’ll set aside our discussion of those who couldn’t afford all that for another story.)
Onto this fun-loving historical background, we place a man. Well, but he’s more than a man, isn’t he? He’s magical, or, at least he should be. But our poor hero was born the wrong sex. He was supposed to have been born female. He’ll have to overcome this deficiency; his magical powers depend on it (hint, that’s where our romance comes in).
Because he was born a ‘he’, his mother hated him from the moment he slipped from the womb (she has reasons which you would need to read the preceding book to learn—it’s also a historical, fantasy romance, but there’s less mystery involved). Her hatred led her to shunning the child, which meant that she never taught him who he should have been, what he was destined for (greatness, naturally, as the most powerful of his people, the Vallen). Instead, the poor boy—now a young man about to turn twenty-one—has to figure this out all on his own (and here is our mystery).
Here is the “official” book description:
Destined for power…
Prophecy foretold the coming of one who would be the most powerful of the Vallen, destined to renew their magical energies. Born male, instead of the anticipated female, Morgan Vallentyn is outcast from birth, banished to the forest by his own mother. His magic weakened and caged by unknown forces, one goal drives Morgan: if he can’t harness his powers by his birthday, another will take his destined place.
Bound by convention…
Adriana Hayden paints with rare passion and vision. But Regency England is no place for such an unconventional woman. Fleeing from a proposed marriage arranged by her domineering guardian, Adriana escapes to the forest and into the arms of a mysterious man with strange powers. A man who unleashes forces she never suspected existed.
A coming storm…
As the summer solstice approaches, the electricity crackling between Morgan and Adriana is only a prelude to the building tempest crackling across the skies. There’s magic in the storm they create together, but to fulfill their destinies, each must find the key to unlock the powers in the other and claim the most powerful magic of all.
So, where is my audience? Is it readers of fantasy? Readers of historical romance? Mystery lovers? Is it all three? Surely there are people who are like me and love a good historical-fantasy-romance-mystery? I live in hope because that book was incredibly fun to write. So much fun that after writing it, I went back and wrote two prequels and then a sequel, making it a four book series! I’ve written a number of short stories in the world I created with this series, and then yet another three book series showing the beginning of the world—The Children of Avalon.
If you love fantasy… if you love history… if you love Arthurian tales…you’ll love these books because they’re light and fun and filled with magic: here’s the link where you can find it (it goes to my website where you can choose from different e-retailers). But also tell me where you are because I’m having trouble finding you.
About Meredith Bond
Merry grew up in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. She was introduced to Regency romances at a young age by her mother, who had a secret passion for Georgette Heyer.
After graduating with a bachelor’s in Communication from the University of Pennsylvania, Merry worked in fundraising for a number of non-profit organizations. When this didn’t prove as fulfilling as she would have hoped, she went back to school for a master’s degree in secondary education where she shared her love of history with inner-city teenagers and tried to instill the same love in them — the jury’s still out on whether it worked. Marriage and the birth of two children interrupted her second attempt at a career.
In order to keep her sanity while raising her children, Merry began living in a fantasy world filled with dashing, noble heroes and beautiful heroines. Desperately searching for an excuse to put the children into daycare, Merry decided to write down her fantasies and call it “working”. She was amazed when someone other than her husband actually liked her writing.
In 2002, Merry was one of the three winners of the Royal Ascot Writing Contest and was offered a two book contract with Kensington Publishers. Miss Seton’s Sonata, Merry’s first book, was released in January 2004 from Zebra Books. Her second book, Wooing Miss Whately, came out in June ’04. The last two books of the Merry Men Quartet, Love of my Life and Dame Fortune were published in June and September 2005, with her last book having the esteemed honor of being one of the last traditional Regency romances published by Kensington. Miss Seton’s Sonatawas the winner of the 2004 Golden Leaf Contest for best Regency Romance; Love of my Lifewon second place in the Write Touch Reader’s Award, 2005; and Dame Fortune was a finalist in the National Reader’s Choice Award, The Beacon Award and the NJ Golden Leaf.
Merry hasn’t let the “death” of traditionally published Regencies affect her. Instead, she turned to self-publishing. In the past two years she has published a book on writing, Chapter One; a Regency-set paranormal romance, Magic in the Storm, a prequel novella to go with her paranormal romance, Storm on the Horizon, and a short story, “In A Beginning” which originally appeared in the anthology Tales From The Mist. She’s currently working on a New Adult Medieval Fantasy series, the “Children of Avalon”, set in the same world as her two Storm books.
Merry also loves helping other people attain their writing and publishing dreams. To that end, she teaches other people how to write at the Writer’s Institute at Frederick Community College, formatting and self-publishing at both Frederick and on-line, and formats books for other self-published authors through her company Anessa Books.
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Don’t miss next Thursdays Showcase post, next Monday I’ll be on tour with a book review.
Have a great week,