My guest today is Regency romance author, Amy Quinton, whose most recent release is What the Duke Wants. I discovered during her interview that Amy and I have a great deal in common. We both love the Regency and Regencies, both writing and reading them, even doing so in the same place. We both have faith that the romance genre has a secure future. And, we both love needlework, including sewing, crocheting, and knitting, though Amy’s craft activities extend into jewelry-making as well. Yet she still finds time to write delicious romances set in the Regency.
May I introduce the multi-talented romance author, Amy Quinton . . .
Thanks for having me on your blog today, Kat; I’m so excited to be here. I admit, I’m having a bit of a fan girl moment knowing I’m on your blog, so bear with me :-). Thanks for sharing your stories with the world, Kat. I’m sure I can speak for many when I say you’ve provided me with enjoyable entertainment and escapism for a few hours.
Q: What is your favorite romance genre, and why?
A: My favorite genre is Regency. I love the Regency period because I love settings that are quite removed from my own reality. When I read, it is to escape to another world and Regency fills that bill for me quite nicely. I realize it’s a romanticized view of the time period, but hey, it’s fantasy.
However, I must admit I like to see my hero’s and heroine’s take a bit of a modern attitude for the times — it allows me to connect with them in a more meaningful way while still taking me to that fantasy world I adore. I firmly believe there were plenty of sassy Regency women who snubbed the rules.
I also love England. I’ve been there many times… my husband is from there, so reading books that take place in England or Scotland really speaks to my heart.
Finally, I love the clothing of the time period and the way the people connect with each other considering there are no telephones, much less smartphones and Facebook. There’s something to be said for delayed gratification.
Q: When you craft a heroine, is she mostly the real you, the you you wish you were, or is she someone totally different?
A: So far, my heroine’s tend to have a mix of all three — a bit of the real me, a bit of the me I wish I were, and certainly elements that are totally different but not necessarily traits I aspire to have. But my intention is to explore all types of heroines, so I’m sure in the future, I will have heroines that are nothing like me and some that are a lot like me. I hope that all of my heroines have something about them that is worthy for anyone to seek in themselves.
Q: When you suffer from writer’s block, how do you unblock?
A: Usually, when I suffer from writer’s block, it’s because I am unsure of where the story is going. Those are moments when I need to sit back and work on developing plot points. Quite often the best way to get that process moving is to take a walk… what I try not to do (but fail miserably) is allow myself to get distracted by social media when that happens… lol
Q: Other than one you have created, who is your favorite romance hero or heroine?
A: One of my favorite heroines, is Amy Malory from the Magic of You by Johanna Lindsay. Not just because of her awesome first name, lol, but I love how she knows what she wants and goes for it. She’s bold without being annoying, kind, funny, confident, and utterly optimistic. I love that mix of traits; I’ve not seen another character like her and I’ve read thousands of romance novels.
Q: If you could have dinner with one romance author, who would you pick?
A: Without question — Julie Anne Long. First — I love, love, love, love, love her stories. Also, despite her incredible success, she manages to take the time to engage with her readers on social media. I see her as incredibly friendly, so I’m sure dinner would be enjoyable. And did I mention I love her books? Lol As an author, I would love to pick her brain as to how she managed to so successfully weave together the Pennyroyal Green Series. She masterfully developed the series… driving us readers to the point where we cannot wait for that final book — to finally see how the romance between Olivia Eversea and Lyon Redmond will play out. I can appreciate the complexity of pulling it all together, and I respect her for that.
Q: If one of your novels could be made into a movie, which one would you pick and who would play the leads?
A: Well, I’ve only written two — and the second is not out yet, so I don’t have a long list to choose from at this point. But if I had to choose, I’d pick my latest, What the Marquess Sees. I love this story and cannot wait to share it with readers. The characters are so complex. My heroine has been a very bad lady. I admit it. She’s had a rough life, but she’s still witty and smart and surprisingly selfless. She’s a survivor. She’s not perfect, but once you peel back the layers, you see that she’s worthy. You begin to understand her without pitying her. And she ends up learning that she can divorce herself from her past and be the person she has the potential to be. My hero is just sexy, strong, and laid back. But he feels deeply. Still, he has the amazing ability to brush off his troubles and choose to be happy and optimistic. I admire that trait.
I honestly could not tell you who could play these characters as I’m not up with the times on current actors. For the male, I’d need someone big and blonde who is sexy, strong, yet laid back. Maybe Chris Hemsworth? For my heroine, I can see someone like Vivian Leigh as Scarlett O’hara in Gone with the Wind… but blonde.
Q: Where is your favorite place to read romance novels?
A: I read romance novels anywhere and everywhere I can. Lol. My favorite is in my recliner in my living room or on my back porch if the weather is nice.
Q: Where is your favorite place to write?
A: My favorite place to write is on my laptop either outside or at a café. I put on my headphones and go for it.
Q: Are your friends and family supportive of your craft?
A: OMG, yes. My kids and husband were unbelievably supportive… they constantly ask me about my writing. My youngest son, who is 8, ran to the bus stop screaming "My mom’s an author! My mom’s an author!" like the town crier on the day my business cards came in. I hadn’t even published my first book yet, but that didn’t matter…. I had a business card that said I was an author and that’s what counts, right? Who knew it was that easy?
My friends… I honestly believe they are the reason my first book was a phenomenal success on the market. They talked about it on Facebook. They left post cards at their places of work. Let’s face it, when you’re starting out, word of mouth is the name of the game. In addition, they’re always willing to read my work ahead of time and give me their honest thoughts on it. And finally, they’re always on my case if I haven’t provided them with something new to read in a reasonable time frame… lol. They make great bosses and a great street team.
Q: If you were not a romance author, what other creative activities would you pursue?
A: I’m always doing something creative. I knit and crochet, sew, make jewelry, sing… If I didn’t write, I would spend more time making jewelry. I have a friend who has a kiln. She regularly invites me over to ‘play’ and we make copper jewelry that we cover in ground glass that we then melt and fuse to the copper. The work is very organic, you never really know how it’s going to turn out until it comes out. Here’s a pic of the last piece I made: I designed and hand cut the shapes out of copper sheet. I hammered and shaped them so they weren’t flat. Then, I covered them with the ground glass and fired them. There are more steps involved, especially to make the bubbling which allows the copper to burst through the colors, of course, but that’s the gist of the process. It’s fun and the pieces come out beautifully.
Q: Will romance still be as popular a hundred years from now as it is today?
A: Without a doubt.
Writers in the genre are really pulling together to abolish the misconceptions about the genre, which helps people be more open about their love of the genre and encourages new readers to give the genre a try. I also think that people are becoming more accepting of other people’s different opinions and tastes. The breadth of the subgenre is exploding. Even the traditionally extreme subgenre’s are becoming more main stream and are more accepted… guaranteeing that no matter your preference, you’ll find something to your taste. I think we, in the romance industry — with our penchant for working together will run with this and drive our genre into the future. Sure it’ll change and expand, but it’ll be there. Social inertia is a slow thing, so it may take a while, but it’ll happen.
What the Duke Wants Blurb
England 1814: Upstanding duke desperately seeks accident-prone wife from trade…
She is from trade. He is a duke and an agent for the crown with a name to restore and a mystery to solve.
Miss Grace (ha!) Radclyffe is an oftentimes hilariously clumsy, 20-year-old orphan biding her time living with her uncle until she is old enough to come into her small inheritance. Much to her aunt’s chagrin:
- Reserved — not with her shocking! tendency to befriend the servants…
- Sophisticated — highly overrated if one cannot run around barefoot outside…
- Graceful — she once flung her dinner into a duke’s face… on accident, of course.
But she is:
- Practical — owning a fashion house is in her future; unless someone foils her plans…
- In love… maybe… perhaps… possibly…
The Duke of Stonebridge is a man with a tragic past. His father died mysteriously when he was 12 years old amid speculation that the old duke was ‘involved‘ with another man. He must restore his family name, but on the eve of his engagement to the perfect debutante, he meets his betrothed’s cousin, and his world is turned inside out… No matter:
He is always:
- Logical — men who follow their hearts and not their heads are foolish…
- Reserved — his private life is nobody’s business but his own…
And he isn’t:
- Impulsive — it always leads to trouble…
- Charming — that’s his best friend, the Marquess of Dansbury’s, area of expertise…
- In love… maybe… perhaps… possibly…
Can he have what he wants and remain respectable? Can she trust him to be the man she needs?
What the Duke Wants Buy Links:
Barnes and Noble: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/what-the-duke-wants-amy-quinton/1121008848?ean=9781622101849
On Amy’s website: http://amyquinton.net/published-works/
Find Amy online at: