12 December 2006

Hello from Germany

Hi everybody! I'm Sandy and, not surprisingly, I write historical romances with a twist. During my first RWA National conference (2004 in Dallas) I went to a workshop held by a well-known agent, who gave us this big list of No-Nos in romance. Like, "settings that don't work: France and Germany." Well, I had just finished what was to become my debut novel, THE LILY BRAND, which starts in France, and had just started writing what was to become CASTLE OF THE WOLF, which is set almost entirely in Germany. The Black Forest to be exact. As you can imagine I left that RWA workshop feeling pretty depressed. But luckily, I've found both an agent and an editor who believe in me and my stories, however twisted the latter might be. :)

After one of my author friends had read THE LILY BRAND, she e-mailed me, "You do know, don't you, that now you have to continue writing dark and kinky." Ah well, I thought, I'm sure I can do kinky, so dark shouldn't be a big problem either. So I planned CASTLE OF THE WOLF as a gothic romance. With lots of references to gothic novels. And what better setting for a gothic romance than a tumble-down castle in the midst of deep, dark woods in the Black Forest? Incidentally, this is also where I spent part of my childhood, so the writing of that novel would be doubly charming. Or so I thought. I simply hadn't counted on my female characters who refused to behave like proper female players in a gothic novel and instead stomped all the gothicness to dust. Literally! (Which just shows that sturdy boots are a dangerous thing to give to your characters.) So, in the end, CASTLE OF THE WOLF didn't turn out to be quite as a dark as I had originally planned. But the tumble-down castle in the midst of deep, dark woods in the Black Forest remained. As well as the joy of basing my fictitious little town Kirchwalden on the place where I spent the most wonderful years of my childhood...

I now live in Frankfurt on the Main, Germany, with three spoilt cats and alltogether too many books. And I happily write historical romances with a twist. So, lots of thanks to Carrie for letting me join this group of fine authors!

Sandy :)


Jacquie said...

Welcome, Sandy!

I can assure you, on this side of the pond there are authors with houses bulging at the seams with books, too. My office is pathetic, but I love my books, each and every one.

Awesome story and setting for your books! I'm headed over to the links on your blog entry right now. Very fascinating.

I'm glad you're unusual!


Camilla said...

Hi Sandy! I can't wait to read your second book because I love the Black Forest!

Welcome to the group!

Sandra Schwab said...

Thanks for the warm welcome! And sorry for the delay in answering -- thanks to my new anti virus software I had some problems logging into blogger these past few days.