15 April 2012

Guest Blog: Kate Rothwell

This week, we're welcoming historical romance author Kate Rothwell, (who also writes as Summer Devon). Her title, SOMEONE TO CHERISH, (formerly published as The Rat Catcher) features a heroine down on her luck in 19th-century New York City.  Kate is here to talk about the novel and give away a copy. Here's the blurb:
The death of Callie Scott’s fashionable father left her with nothing—except an inquisitive mind not even her grandmother’s puritanical upbringing could quash. An adventurous spirit doesn’t help the sheltered young lady in 1884 New York City, and she must accept an abysmal position as a companion.

Things are looking up when she lands a trial job in a “special” library. Her benefactor’s offer of wine before noon should have signaled something amiss—not to mention the heated text she’s asked to translate. The more she reads, the more wine she needs to cool her blush.

Detective Cutter can’t quite place the tipsy young woman he encounters in a notorious brothel, but when she plants a dizzying kiss on his lips, he’s sure she doesn’t belong there. The resulting scandal of the police raid leaves Callie on the street, and Cutter feels responsible for her welfare.

Despite the cruel knowledge that he will never be part of her world, Cutter impulsively offers her a job in his home, where she turns out to possess more than the face of an angel. She has an irresistible, innocent sensuality—and an insatiable curiosity that could bring her one step too close to a murderer.

**Q&A with Kate Rothwell**

Where do you get your ideas?
I don’t have a clue. Usually I have far too many stories rolling around in my head and have no time to capture them all. For the first time in years, I’ve got a blank brain. There are some manuscripts hanging around that I should edit, but I like having a new project started. So I put out a call on my Facebook page for five word contributions to Start Up the Plot Bunnies.  https://www.facebook.com/kate.rothwell  Here are the words my Facebook friends gave me:

Melvin felt his heart die.
And so it begins. :)
Step up to the plate~~~
The ticket's hidden at McDonald's.
The gun's in your purse.
I lied about last night.
The plot rabbit was fox-snatched.
She plummeted from the dream
I can't do just five words..."although I understand the intent".
Little did he know, his death was closing in on him.
disgrace, religion, pharmacy, ice cream, tow truck
disparity wormhole leverage framework sacrificial
"What the hell IS that?!"
the nutella killer has escaped

I have no idea how.
She never wanted a goat.
…I love writing exercises. Maybe you could use some of these?

You write about 1880s New York. What about that era has vanished that you wish still existed?
I’m not sure that we’re so far removed from that world.  I guess I’d bring back the push-carts (anyone read The Pushcart Wars, a kids’ book by Jean Merrill? I loved that story) and I love reading the descriptions of the esoteric businesses that filled the city. But if you go only a couple of blocks away from the less touristy parts of New York, you’ll still find the strange little shops and restaurants. It isn’t all Saks and Olive Garden.
From the primary material I read from the era, I get a sense of exuberance and zest for growth that isn’t inhibited with the fears we have now. Because I mean well-founded fears, such as damage to the environment or disregard to personal safety, I’m not sure I’d want to bring back that recklessness. 
I’d love to see the clothes! I’m not so sure I’d want to wear them. Oh, here’s something I’d bring back with no reservations: the milkman delivering bottles every morning. I’d prefer it if he’d drive a horse-cart, too.

You’re Kate Rothwell and Summer Devon. Why do you use two names for your writing?  
Summer used to be responsible for the hotter titles. These days, I’m not as certain which name goes with which sorts of stories. The only thing I’m sure of: Summer will always be the name I use on the m/m stories and the stories I write with Bonnie Dee.

What are you working on?
I should be editing a couple of stories. One’s set in 1880s New York and features a heroine based on Nelly Bly and a newspaper publisher who’s determined to get her to work for him (think His Girl Friday). I think I’ll go play with that right now.

Bonnie Dee and I have a contemporary coming out at the end of this month. I’m looking forward to seeing that in print—and it will also be a recorded book. That’s a first!

Is that New York historical about a journalist a romance?
Everything I write is! Next up: taking those words my Facebook friends gave me and wrestling them into something fun.

Thank you, Kate, and best of luck with Someone to Cherish, available now! The first full chapter of the book is included in Kate's FREE read, a novella, Seducing Miss Dunaway. Get your copy of Someone to Cherish at Amazon and Barnes & Noble.