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Break(Through) The Ice
Genre: Contemporary romance
Publisher: Twenty or Less Press
Writing the Write Perspective
Thanks for having me stop by today. I want to chat with your readers a bit about my latest character, Jasmine Graves, from my new release Break(Through) the Ice and another character I’m working on Liz Clark, from my work in progress, Domestic Discipline Needed.
Now these are two very special ladies. What do they have in common you may ask? Well, I’ll tell ya, it’s not their choice in guys, because their leading men couldn’t be more different from each other, and it’s not their history or their heritage (Jaz is Native American, Liz is Asian American). It’s their profession – they’re both writers.
It’s been a lot of fun crafting these two seemingly different yet sort of similar characters. Writers are a special (some would say crazy) bunch. Statistically speaking we’re more likely to be depressed, use drugs and alcohol, and twice as likely commit suicide. Here’s the link to the BBC article about this (http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/health-19959565).
So it’s no wonder that writers make for interesting characters on the page. Jaz is a writer who’s love of a movie star has spurred her into writing an entire series, which then gets made into a movie. And who’s cast to play the leading man? You guessed it – her dream guy, Vince Demarco. Because this was a novella, there wasn’t a lot of time to really show Jasmine’s regular writing life, but you get glimpses of it when Vince refers to her as a “reported recluse” and the fact that she lives inside her head a lot, even when there’s other stuff going on in the world around her.
This is totally a writer thing! We daydream all the time. And I do mean all the time. Find a writer. Ask them. They’ll tell you. We do it while driving, while showering, brushing our teeth, texting, talking to our significant others or family members, eating, cooking, sleeping. We pretty much don’t go twenty minutes without some kind of daydream in our heads, no matter how exciting real life is when we’re daydreaming. We don’t mean to, honest. It just sort of happens. For all of you readers out there who love a writer, I apologize on behalf of us all for our seemingly disinterested nature. Sometimes it’s easier to quiet the voices in our heads, but sometimes it’s difficult, and all we can think about is our obsessive need to unknot a plot twist or sketch out a series arc. It doesn’t mean we don’t love you.
For Jaz, her creative introverted nature has a direct line to losing her brother when she was a kid. That kind of loss in her past has pushed her farther into her world of words than anything else in her life. It was important in writing Jaz (and Liz) that I was able to give them really authentic writerlyness from my own writer’s life or that of other authors (like making up words, of course).
There’s this scene in Break(Through) the Ice where Jaz has to do something that terrifies her, and so she just pictures herself as a character in a book, doing something completely different, and that helps her get through it. When I’m bored, or frustrated, or anything that I don’t want to deal with, I retreat into a book, usually one of my own. Whether I’m thinking about it, planning it out, writing it, or revising it, escaping into the world I created and have complete control (yeah right) over helps me.
For Liz, I was able to expand a bit more on her writing neuroses. She starts out the book with this scene in her head from a dream and then writes it out without really having any idea what she’s writing consciously. I know that there are times in a book that this happens. My eyes are closed, my headphones are blaring music, and my fingers are flying over the keys. I’m not stopping to think let alone stopping long enough to edit or second-guess myself. Some of the greatest writing comes out of that kind of headspace. Granted, sometimes it’s complete crap, but a lot of the time, this is where the meat of a story can come through.
So these two ladies are near and dear to my heart as all of my characters are, but they’ll always be a little bit more special because I feel like if they were real people (as if they’re not) they would get me better than most or even all of my other characters. J
Thanks for having me by to drone on about writing about writers, and why it was so much fun for me.
When Jasmine Graves is invited to the set of the movie based on her book series, she thinks all her dreams have come true. The Vince Demarco, the man she’s based her hero on for the past seven years, will be there and she can’t wait to meet him. Little does she know that she’ll have to face her worst fears to keep her leading man.
Vince Demarco has never been as intrigued by a character or an author before being introduced to the haunted werewolf he’s been cast to play. So when he comes face to face with its creator, Jasmine Graves, he’s awestruck. But he fears an author who’s a reported recluse will want nothing to do with the paparazzi madness and crazy shooting schedule that comes with dating a movie star.
Neither one can deny the almost animal attraction that overwhelms them at first contact. But can an author and her muse breakthrough the barriers between them, or will the heat between them turn to ice in the winter cold of the Adirondack Camp?
Oh, God, no. No, no, no. Please do not come over here! Her first meeting with Vince couldn’t be while she was face-down in a tangled heap of arms and legs. With another man, to boot. She was supposed to be breaking the ice around Vince, not her ass, damn it.
She pushed her gloved hands into the snow and tried to lever herself up. She attempted to get her knees under her, but the snowshoes were too big in the front, keeping her off balance.
“Here, let me.” Vince’s large hands closed around her arms and he lifted her as if she weighed nothing. At five-nine, and none-too-skinny, she wasn’t used to being manhandled. But when Vince set her upright, steadying her with those strong hands of his, she felt almost delicate.
His shaved head was covered with a fur-lined hood clouding his features with shadows, but she would know what he looked like in the pitch black: Dark skin, a wide-set nose, low eyebrows, and thick pink lips she’d imagined kissing a thousand times. Even within the confines of his coat, she could see the broad shoulders, the thick, corded neck, and tapered waist.
Jasmine looked into those dark eyes and forgot everything around her, even the fact that not thirty seconds ago, he’d been telling another woman he loved her.“Uh… I’m…” Coherent thought left her completely.
“Jasmine Graves.” The deep rumble of his mildly-accented voice caressed her name, sending a shiver skittering down her spine.
He knew her name? She’d entered an alternate universe where movie stars knew authors’ names, not the other way around. She nodded like a fool.
“Are you all right, Ms. Graves?”
“Jaz,” she said.
His hood slipped back, revealing that devastatingly handsome face. He looked momentarily confused, and if she didn’t know any better, she’d think his face looked as star-struck as hers felt in that moment. She blinked, trying to make sense of the situation and regain her equilibrium, but as soon as her eyes opened, they were captured again by his gaze. What did he see when he looked at her?
She’d pulled a soft multi-colored knit hat low over her ears. her long hair flowing out behind her in the wind. A rib-knit scarf covered her chin and neck. Only a bit of her face was visible in the night, but Vince’s attention didn’t waver an inch. She’d imagined this day a thousand times, a thousand ways, but this instant physical reaction hadn’t been part of the equation. He still held her arm, and he was standing closer than was necessary. But she sure as hell wasn’t going to complain.
“You’re taller than I expected.”
He’d anticipated this meeting too? Out of all the fantasies she’d ever had, his knowing who she was immediately and making some comment like that hadn’t been one of them. She swallowed. Not even in her worst bouts of writer’s block did words desert her so completely. “Thanks,” she managed to squeeze out, then remembered to smile at him and at least attempt to be flirtatious.
“For saying you’re tall?”
She laughed. “No. For picking up my sorry, klutzy ass from the snow bank.”
“Yeah, what the hell happened?” Brian asked from beside her. His voice broke the spell and Vince let go of her. The separation was like a physical blow and she shivered in the sudden coldness.
She turned her attention to Brian. “Sorry. I was… admiring the scenery. I didn’t realize you had stopped until I looked back toward the path and was nose to back with you. I couldn’t stop in time. You okay?”
“Yeah, I’m fine.” He brushed some snow from the front of his coat. “As I was saying, up ahead is the main lounge. It’s where all the meals will be served. There’s always hot chocolate, coffee, and tea on tap, as well as bottled water and all that. You’ll be sharing a cabin with a few of the crew. It’s over there.” He pointed to a set of cabins next to where the blonde actress was staying. Damned if Jaz could remember the woman’s name. After Vince had stepped down off the porch, Jaz had gotten a good look at Vince’s latest co-star.
Out of the corner of her eye, Jaz saw Vince staring at her. That same look of wonder was in his eyes, but she didn’t turn her gaze back to his. He’d just been professing his love to someone else. It was one thing to fantasize about a man, create a character around him, and fall in love with him in her dreams. It was another thing entirely to interfere in his real-world relationship with someone else. She would keep her distance.
“I’ll show you the rest of the way to your cabin if you’d like,” Brian said.
Damn. The man had taken the words right out of Vince’s mouth. He wanted to be the one to show Jaz to her cabin. It was a stupid reaction, but one he couldn’t quite quell. She was almost as tall as he was. When she’d posed with those wolves for her author photo, she’d been kneeling in the dirt. He’d had no idea that she was so tall. Her thick, dark hair ruffled in the night breeze, adding an ethereal quality to her looks. A chill climbed over his bare head, but he couldn’t quite bear to put up his hood yet and restrict his view of her.
Jasmine’s Native American heritage was apparent in her tan skin, breathtaking square face, and dark, slightly almond-shaped eyes. Together, the effect was mesmerizing. Though right now he couldn’t see most of her face beneath her hat and scarf, he knew what she looked like. She glanced at him and he smiled.
“Thank you, again…”
“Vince. You can call me Vince.”
“Okay then, Vince. Thanks. I suppose I’ll see you around?”
God, he hoped so. He nodded and she turned away. It would be entirely too awkward for him to stand there another second, so he headed for his own cabin to reread tomorrow’s scene.
“I’m actually starving, is there still food about?” she asked Brian as they walked toward the other end of the camp.
“Great. I’ll just drop my bags, and then could you show me over to the lodge?”
And if Vince happened to be there, having another cup of hot chocolate and Jasmine happened to come in to have a late dinner, there’d be nothing wrong with that, right?
“I’d be happy to,” Brian said. By the man’s voice, he really hadn’t minded being pancaked into the snow by the lovely Ms. Graves.
About the Author:
Rachell Nichole is a contemporary erotic romance author. She currently writes what she likes to call Sizzling Romantic Entanglements. She loves creating memorable characters and putting them through the paces on their discovery for and journey to love.
Rachell holds two undergraduate degrees, one in Professional Writing and the other in French. She also received a Master of Fine Arts in Writing Popular Fiction at Seton Hill University. She is the author of The Marietta Hotels Series, Spicy with a Side of Cranberry Sauce, and Queen of Hearts.
Rachell lives in New York with a mountain of books, a loving family, and an evil cat named Godiva that she adores.