I’m happy to introduce award-winning author Gwyn Cready as the special guest blogger here today at Thoughts in Progress.
Gwyn’s newest sexy time-travel adventure, “Flirting With Forever” goes on sale tomorrow. An ambitious writer discovers that bad boy painters are as timeless - and irresistible - as their art in “Flirting With Forever.”
Thanks to Gwyn and Ayelet with Pocket Books of Simon & Schuster, I have two copies of “Flirting With Forever” to giveaway to visitors commenting on this post between today and 8 p.m. on April 5. Be sure to include an e-mail address in your comments if your profile doesn’t include one. Gwyn will be stopping back by to answer any questions you might have and respond to comments.
With the release of her new book Gwyn has graciously agreed to answer a number of questions for me concerning her writing and this unique plot.
How would you categorize your latest release? Is it filled with romance, suspense, intrigue, a twist of humor, and a touch of science fiction?
Yes, yes, yes, yes and yes! But most of all it's romantic. It's the most romantic story I've ever written. There's one scene in it that makes me cry every time I read it. Poor Peter and his dark secrets. Don't these heroes realize that until they can open up to a good woman, they can never be happy?
What inspired you to write about a time traveling art historian?
I love art and I especially love the art of Peter Lely, who was a real-life painter and the royal portraitist to Charles II in the seventeenth century. Very little is known of his life, and the parts that are known are very touching. But my real inspiration came from Tracy Chevalier and her wonderful novel, The Girl with a Pearl Earring. Chevalier made no bones about the fact that most of the book was fiction--fiction in the "made up" sense of the word--and I had the most entertaining vision of Vermeer up in heaven, sitting in his bathtub with the book in his hand saying, "What the...?" From that it was an easy transition to Peter Lely coming back to earth to stop the art historian who's writing his sexy, tell-all biography.
How does one do research on time traveling?
What? You don't know the secret?
Seriously, the great thing about time travel is that's very little research to be done. I think once you know the basic tenets, which you can pretty much pick up by slipping Back to the Future into your DVD player, you're good to go. I like genres where fewer rules apply. I think I'd have a hard time writing Regency romances because there seem to be so many rules.Of course, that was the same trouble I had with the corporate world : )
Is there a 17th century painter you'd like to meet and why?
Peter Lely or Vermeer would be lovely (especially if they looked as much like Colin Firth as I'm imagining.)
You say this is the most romantic story you've ever written. Did you start out to write a romance novel or did it just evolve?
Well, all my books are romance novels. Flirting with Forever just seems especially heart-tugging. Given Peter's dark secrets, I knew the book would have a more traditionally romantic tone to it than Seducing Mr. Darcy and Tumbling Through Time. Which isn't to say it isn't funny, of course. Cam, the heroine, has a few very entertaining scenes.
Is there a sequel in the works for Cam Stratford or will the next book have all new characters?
Well, anything could happen, but at present I think Peter and Cam have earned their right to a little down time. My next book, Aching for Always, involves maps, one map in particular. A woman in the present has it; a man in the past wants it.
What advice would you give a novice writer trying to decide in what genre to write?
Write what you like to read. You'll have a better understanding of how that genre works. I'd also recommend reading Stephen King's On Writing, which is both an entertaining memoir and a helpful guide to better writing.
If you were snowbound in a lodge with four book characters, who would you select, why and what would you want to talk about?
Well, I hope my husband isn't reading this because they'd all be men and there wouldn't be a lot of talking. Jamie Fraser, Harry Bosch, Jack Aubrey and Fitzwilliam Darcy--Fraser for his sword, Bosch for his badge, Aubrey for his ship and Darcy for his boots.
What do you want readers to come away with after reading "Flirting with Forever"?
A smile and a huge crush on my hero. And if they Google Peter Lely, I'll be pretty happy, too.
Anything about you, your writing, and/or your books you want readers to know that they might not already know?
My big, dark, dirty secret is that I have no time to read. I'm usually working on a deadline, and if I'm clear-thinking enough to be reading, I figure I'm clear-thinking enough to be writing. Which means no book. I still "consume" a few books a year by listening to them while I'm driving. I really can't chide myself for not writing while I'm driving, and a girl's gotta get her Jamie Fraser somehow (I'm listening to An Echo in the Bone now). I don't think I've read a book by scanning words since the first Harry Potter came out.
Gwyn, thanks for blogging here today. You've given us a different outlook on time-travel with a little twist. I love the book cover and the shoes, oh my now those I'd love to have a pair of.
For more on Gwyn and her writing, check out her website. Now here's a brief synopsis of the book and remember to comment for a chance to win a copy of "Flirting With Forever."
Art historian Campbell Stratford has piqued more than readers’ interest with her salacious, tell-all “fictographies” of seventeenth-century painters. But she is more intimately familiar with her subjects than anyone can imagine. Thanks to a time portal she accidentally discovered, Campbell has been visiting— and causing quite a stir in— the Great Beyond.
When Campbell sees the breathtaking and provocative portraits of half-clothed noblewomen produced by Sir Peter Lely, she dons her period travel garb, determined to dig up a great story. But Lely, portraitist to the king, has been recruited by the Guild protecting dead artists to save their reputations by sabotaging Cam’s latest project.
After a few hours of posing on Lely’s chaise—and a night of seductive passion—Cam returns home and discovers Lely’s betrayal. But before she can turn her angry pen on her lover, Sir Peter makes a surprise visit to the future and transforms Cam’s twenty-first-century life into chaos of classic proportions.
Would you like to time travel? Where would you go, who would you visit and why?