27 September 2009

Guest Author: Michelle Beattie

This week on Unusual Historicals we welcome the return of author Michelle Beattie as she celebrates the release of her second high-seas romance ROMANCING THE PIRATE. Here's the blurb:

Alicia Davidson thought her memory loss and scar were the result of a childhood fall. When she discovers the truth, and that she has a sister she doesn't remember, Alicia will stop at nothing to fill in the missing pieces of her past. Her determination will pit her against a man who not only resents her, but who awakens a flood of desire.

Blake Merritt makes it clear he wants nothing to do with Alicia or anyone bearing the Davidson name. Only when Alicia stows away on his ship does he concede to take her to her sister. His hope is that the faster he gets rid of Alicia, the faster he'll forget her. But he hadn't planned on falling in love with her.

The trip to find her sister is a rocky one filled with fiery emotions, the shocking confession of Blake's anger toward her family, a passion that runs hot as the Caribbean sun and the discovery of a traitor who wields the power to once again take away everything Alicia holds dear.

Carracks the parrot stole the scenes in WHAT A PIRATE DESIRES. Does he come back in ROMANCING THE PIRATE?

Yes, Carracks is back in ROMANCING THE PIRATE, and every other book of the series as well! Funny how something so small can turn into a big deal. Several reviewers, including Publisher's Weekly, commented on Carracks and so of course we had to bring him back!

Alicia, the heroine in ROMANCING THE PIRATE, is Sam's sister from WHAT A PIRATE DESIRES. I thought she was killed in a pirate attack when she was a young girl?

Sam believes Alicia is dead but as we see in the beginning of ROMANCING THE PIRATE, Alicia is alive and doesn't remember anything of her life before she was twelve (which is when the pirate attack took place). She soon learns of Sam and the book is her quest to find her sister.

Who, then, is the hero?

Ah, Blake Merritt. Though not a true pirate, he makes a living as a privateer and he's a man with his own troubled past. He loathes the Davidsons, the family that raised Alicia, and so when Alicia asks for him to take her find her sister, Blake refuses to use his ship to help her. It's an interesting dynamic seeing them together and his struggle not to like Alicia, despite the fact that she is, as far as she knows, a Davidson.

Will there be battle scenes like there was in WHAT A PIRATE DESIRES?

Of course, you can't have pirates and villains without battles!

Any other new characters that were fun to add?

Oh my, yes. Blake has two first mates, a tall gorgeous man named Nate and a tender-hearted dwarf named Vincent. I absolutely love the dynamic and the friendship between these three men and you'll see some more of them in PLAYING THE PIRATE, which comes out fall of 2010.

So each book of the pirate series stands alone but some of the same characters come back?

Yes, my plan is for each book to have it's own characters and plot line, but you will see many of the same faces pop in and out.

WHAT A PIRATE DESIRES was your first release. What fun things came your way with that?

Well, my first book signings which were in my hometown and more like family reunions! Being a finalist in the Bookseller's Best Awards, doing two book signings at the Romance Writers of America's conference in DC this past July. Being reviewed in Publisher's Weekly and seeing all the good reviews come in. It makes all the long hours at the computer and the rejections worthwhile!

What's next for you?

I'm currently revisiting the first book I ever a wrote, a western, and am trying to beef it up a little and turn it into a trilogy.

Which authors inspired you?

Those that did and still do: Nora Roberts, Sandra Brown and Janet Evanovich. Some new authors I've recently read and loved include Cherry Adair, Robyn Carr, Carla Neggers, Susan Mallery.

You write historicals and yet none of those authors mentioned write them. Don't you read historicals?

Not many, no. Because my favorite historicals are westerns, and for the most part westerns have been non-existent in recent years, it forced me to read elsewhere. Now that I'm writing westerns again, I will be reading those again.

What do you do when you're not writing?

I always have a book nearby. I know some people say they're too busy to read, I've never had that problem. I can't NOT read, especially before bed. And reading inspires me to write, so it's also necessary. I also spend time with my kids, I enjoy the company of my friends, lately I've been busy in the garden. I enjoy movies and sadly, I'm addicted to word games on Facebook!

Any suggestions for aspiring writers?

Never give up. If you want this, REALLY, want this, then work hard. Work every day, or as often as you can and force yourself to work when you don't feel like it. Accept that rejections are part of the business and learn to put them aside so that you can keep writing. Not everyone will like your work and that's okay. Write well, write often, never stop submitting. Believe in yourself even when it seems like nobody else does and keep writing.


Thanks so much for visiting us again, Michelle! For readers of Unusual Historicals we have...you guessed it...a giveaway! Just leave a comment or question for Michelle and you'll be entered in a drawing for one free copy. I'll draw a winner next Sunday, so spread the word! Void where prohibited. Good luck to everyone!