Thursday, February 3, 2011

Author Elizabeth Hoyt Visits

Please join me in welcoming USA Today bestselling author Elizabeth Hoyt back to Thoughts in Progress as the special guest blogger as she makes a stop on her virtual book tour.

Elizabeth’s latest release is NOTORIOUS PLEASURES, the second installment in the Maiden Lane series. Here’s a brief synopsis: Their lives were perfect . . .
Lady Hero Batten, the beautiful sister of the Duke of Wakefield, has everything a woman could want, including the perfect fiancé. True, the Marquis of Mandeville is a trifle dull and has no sense of humor, but that doesn't bother Hero. Until she meets his notorious brother . . .

Until they met each other.
Griffin Remmington, Lord Reading, is far from perfect - and he likes it that way. How he spends his days is a mystery, but all of London knows he engages in the worst sorts of drunken revelry at night. Hero takes an instant dislike to him, and Griffin thinks that Hero, with her charities and faultless manners, is much too impeccable for society, let alone his brother. Yet their near-constant battle of wits soon sparks desire - desire that causes their carefully constructed worlds to come tumbling down. As Hero's wedding nears, and Griffin's enemies lay plans to end their dreams forever, can two imperfect people find perfect true love?

Thanks to Elizabeth, Anna, and the good folks at Hachette Book Group, I have 3 copies of NOTORIOUS PLEASURES to giveaway. Please see the guidelines for the giveaway at the end of the post.

Elizabeth stops by today to answer some questions about her writing and her series.

Mason - Love the cover of NOTORIOUS PLEASURES. Do you get to have any input into the cover design?

Elizabeth - It’s a great cover, isn’t it? ;-) I don’t have a whole lot of input into my covers. Usually my editor asks for a couple of scene ideas and picks one she likes. The scene on the cover of NOTORIOUS PLEASURES is when the hero and heroine visit a pleasure garden. I think I may’ve asked for a few more fireworks in the background, but that was about it.

Mason - In doing your research for this book, what was the most unusual bit of information you found that you couldn't use in the book?

Elizabeth - I’m always getting sidetracked by odd bits of history
that don’t have anything to do with what I’m researching at the moment—Wikipedia can be addictive! Somehow I started reading about Cromwell’s head recently—don’t ask me how I got on that subject. Apparently his head fell down from where it was posted on a pole and then showed up later in a museum…or maybe not. Some people claimed it was the wrong head!

Readers can find more sidetracked research on my website:

Mason - You include dogs in your stories, why not cats?

Elizabeth - Well, I’m a dog person. But wait! I included a cat in WICKED INTENTIONS—the orphanage cat Soot who gets a dramatic rescue at the end of the book by the hero who doesn’t even like cats! ;-)

Mason - Names of characters are always intriguing in your books. How do you select the names for your characters? Do you keep a list for future books?

Elizabeth - I’m very careful when I chose the name of my characters—not only do they have to “fit” the character, but they have to be period appropriate, can’t be too close to other character names, etc. I do have some name books, but mostly they simply give me ideas. Hero, the name of the heroine in NOTORIOUS PLEASURES, is from Shakespeare and I felt it fit her personality—elegant, aristocratic, a bit reserved.

Mason - What is the most difficult part of writing historical romance?

Elizabeth - Getting the voice right. If the book doesn’t “sound” historical, then the reader can’t get into the story.

Mason - In the Maiden Lane Series NOTORIOUS PLEASURES is second after WICKED INTENTIONS. Does the series have to be read in order or is each book a stand alone?

Elizabeth - There is a continuing thread between the books, so I think you’ll get the most out of them by reading them in order.

Mason - What can readers expect next from you?

Elizabeth - In November the third Maiden Lane book will be out. SCANDALOUS DESIRES features Silence Hollingbrook as the heroine. I hope you enjoy it!

Elizabeth, thanks for blogging here today. It’s interesting how quickly you can get sidetracked when doing research. Wonder how they could prove it is or isn’t Cromwell’s head.

For a bit of background on Elizabeth. She is an author of historical romance and also writes deliciously fun contemporary romance under the name Julia Harper. Elizabeth lives in central Illinois with three untrained dogs, two angelic but bickering children, and one long-suffering husband. For chapter excerpts, book extras, and author appearances, check out her websites at and

Click on this link to hear an excerpt from NOTORIOUS PLEASURES.

Now the giveaway guidelines. To enter this giveaway, send me an e-mail ( Your subject line should read, “Win NOTORIOUS PLEASURES.” Your message should include your name and mailing address. The contest is open to residents of the U.S. and Canada only and no post office box addresses can be accepted. In addition, Hachette is advising winners that they will be subject to the one copy per household rule, which means that if they win the same title in two or more contests, they will receive only one copy of the title (or one set in the case of grouped giveaways) in the mail. (Winners here have always be great about letting me know if they have already won the book somewhere else so another winner can be selected. However, this announcement is something that has to be passed along from Hachette). And, just so you know, I don’t share the mailing information or use it for any other purpose. The deadline to enter this giveaway for a chance at 1 of the 3 copies of the 400-page NOTORIOUS PLEASURES (ISBN: 9780446558952) will be 8 p.m. (EST) on Saturday, Feb. 19.


  1. Elizabeth, thanks for guest blogging today. I enjoy how you get so involved in your research. Research can really make a story. Wishing you much success.

  2. Aww I love that she included dogs and a cat :) I do that too!! I would so enter the contest... cept I'm pretty sure NZ isn't part of USA ;p oh well.. is it coming to Kindle??

    The Arrival, only .99c on Amazon/Smashwords

  3. Interesting post! I hadn't thought about the historical voice before, but I can imagine the challenge that would pose, as would naming characters. Thanks for getting me thinking and best wishes for your books, Elizabeth.

  4. Mason - Thanks for hosting Elizabeth.

    Elizabeth - I like historical fiction, so I was really interested in the points you made about research. And I agree; naming characters is always an issue. The really do need to be period-appropriate, interesting and stand out. I wish you much success with the Maiden Lane series.

  5. Mason, thanks for hosting.

    Elizabeth, Your cover is very pretty. The historical element of any novel is so intriging. The research into the era is so important. We need to feel we are there.

  6. I like the idea of choosing and using character names to really fit the character, and help develop them too, in a way. Thanks for sharing.

  7. "I’m always getting sidetracked by odd bits of history" – me too!

    "If the book doesn’t 'sound' historical, then the reader can’t get into the story."- So true. How do get into the right frame of mind?

  8. Interesting to hear about the ´tricks´ of writing historical fiction. I agree that naming characters is extremely important; even in my modern stories I check that a person of a certain age could really have been called that.

  9. I love Elizabeth's books and can't wait to read this one. Thanks for the interview.

  10. Congrats to Elizabeth on the new release. I hope to see more of the ghost in "Notorious Pleasures."

  11. Looks like a great book.....Thanks for the contest!


I'd love to hear your thoughts on today's post. Thanks for dropping by.