Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Book Giveaway and Interview with Romance Writer Donna Hatch

Hello, my lovely readers! I have a special treat for you today. Donna Hatch, the talented author of The Stranger She Married, has kindly agreed to answer a few questions. (To see my 5-pearl review of Donna's fabulous book, click here.)

Me: The first question is one I always ask, even if it's been answered before. Did you always want to be a writer?

Donna: Yes. And an actress. And a ballerina. I tried to do it all; I took ballet and I was in theater in school, not to mention I'm a drama queen in real life, but desire doesn't always equal talent. I've been writing stories since I was about 8.

Me: You certainly have tried to do it all! I know you have a large family. How do you find the time to research, write, and network without neglecting them?

Donna: What? You mean six children is considered a large family? ;-) At first I wrote either during nap time or late at night after everyone was in bed. Or when suffering from insomnia. Then I got really crazed about writing and started doing it instead of housework, or scrapbooking, or ... well, pretty much everything else. It did get easier when my youngest started school. Now I have a few hours in the morning that I can write before I have to leave for work.

Me: I only have two children and find it a bit overwhelming at times. I congratulate you on developing a schedule that works. You are a bit of an expert in regard to Regency England. What started you off on this obsession?

Donna: I don't consider myself an expert by any stretch, but I have extensively researched it. I had stories in my head demanding to be told, but I didn't know precisely which period to set them in. I vacillated between Regency and Victorian. It wasn't until I really started delving into the differences between them that I fell in love with this unique and short time period. I ruled out the Victorian Era because the strictures became more rigid and the clothing more extreme. However, I mostly love Regency because there's something fleeting and magical that captures my interest. By then, people began bathing on a regular basis - the rich even had indoor plumbing, men were dressing more manly and less foppish than earlier eras, they had gotten rid of those ridiculous wigs, and it was a time of revolution; education, science, the beginning of the industrial age. Also, it was right after the war, which creates the perfect situation for returning war heroes with wounds both seen and unseen. I love nothing more than a wounded hero who needs a woman to heal and save him.

Me: Who doesn't love a battle-scarred hero? What are the best reference materials that you have come across?

Donna: Anything by Jane Austen or the Bronte Sisters are great for getting the facts and the feel of the era. As far as research books here are some of the best:
Our Tempestuous Day by Carolly Erickson
The Half Mad Lord by Thomas Pitt
Georgette Heyer’s Regency World
Regency Etiquette: The Mirror of Graces, 1811, by a Lady of Distinction
The Regency Companion, Sharon Laudermilk and Teresa L Hamlin

Also, Georgette Heyer is considered the Queen of Regencies, although some of hers are Georgian. Frederica and The Grand Sophy are excellent for Regency feel. But beware; she deliberately threw in some things that we now call "Heyerisms" because she was trying to expose other authors who were using her as a source rather than doing their own research.

My favorite source is my Regency writer's group. I can go online and ask for help on anything Regency and either get a quick answer from an expert or a recommendation for a good source.

Me: Well, since I have only read a couple of Ms Heyer's works at this point, I guess I don't have to worry about falling into the trap. One last question, and this is the most important. How soon can we expect the next book in your "Rogue Hearts" series? LOL

Donna: The second in the series, The Guise of a Gentleman, which is about piratical Jared, will be out in April 2010.

Me: Excellent! I can hardly wait for its release. Thank you so much for joining us today, Donna!

Now for the giveaway!

Donna has graciously agreed to award two copies of her short story e-book, Troubled Hearts, to a couple of very fortunate readers.

How can you enter to win?
  1. For 1 entry, comment on this post. Tell us what you love about the Regency period. If you are unfamiliar with the period, tell us that.
  2. For 1 entry, follow Donna's blog,
  3. For 1 entry, follow Donna's group blog, Historical Hussies.
Multiple entries are allowed, so do all three if you want. Deadline for entering this contest is October 25, Midnight Eastern Time. The winner will ONLY be announced here so check back on October 26 to see if you've won. (I suggest subscribing or becoming a follower of this blog to avoid missing the announcement.) If you're the winner, contact me at jaimeygrant(at)yahoo(dot)com with your email.


Becki said...

Great interview and I can't pass up the chance to win an e-book! I am not particularly familiar with the regency period.

Rachel Rossano said...

I absolutely loved "The Stranger She Married," and I am eagerly awaiting her next book in April. I also cannot resist a wounded hero. :)

Brenda said...

I love the Small Pink Daisy
Flower Hair Clip

dancealert at aol dot com

Christy said...

I love the male costumes of the period. Something about a guy in Hessian boots!

And I already follow Historical Hussies.


mindy said...

i love the romanticism of that period thanks minsthins at optonline dot net

The romantic query letter and the happy-ever-after said...

I love this blog so much I can hardly stand it. You know there is something to be said of a passion expressed well, sadly I’m not the one to say it but I’ll say this, well done.

Kitty J said...

I love Regencies! Probably my favorite romances...

Brooke said...

I do love historical romances but I am not too familiar with regency period.. However, I must say the period dress was quite interesting


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