"The notion that such persons are gay of heart and carefree is curiously untrue. They lead, as a matter of fact, an existence of jumpiness and apprehension. They sit on the edge of the chair of Literature. In the house of Life they have the feeling that they have never taken off their overcoats."
- James Thurber, My Life and Hard Times

Monday, March 28, 2011

Guess who came to visit?

Author Regan Black is guesting on my blog today. She is a paranormal romance writer, which is very exciting, since I hardly ever get anyone of another genre on my blog. Actually, I don't remember EVER having someone of another genre here. I'd better get out the tea and fairy cakes, or she won't think I'm any kind of hostess at all.

So without further ado, take it away, Regan:

* * * * *

I'm excited to be here today at Gayle's invitation. When she posted a 'cross-pollination' request I jumped on it. Then wondered over how to do it, since humor and paranormal romance are at rather different places on the publishing spectrum.

But Gayle's a brave person with bright ideas. She said, "Well, I could talk about how to write funny (no, not funny peculiar, funny ha-ha), and you could talk about how to write abnormal - I mean PARAnormal. LOL"

In all honesty, I wanted to be Gayle. And not just because she has horses. When I set out to write, I wanted to write humor. But while (folks tell me) I'm hysterical in conversation, the more I wrote, the more I smothered any humor in my writing voice with dark characters, mysterious skillsets, and wicked twisted plot lines.

So here I am, happy to talk about why and how I write abnormal/paranormal.

It took a few years, but I accepted that if I can't write funny ha-ha, I'd better follow my twisted story strengths into the paranormal realms. I tried to fight it, tried to write to the 'standard level of darkness' most publishing houses would accept, but I just couldn't reel it in. During a conference mixer one of the speakers asked me what I was writing when the words flowed effortlessly. I admitted to her (and finally to myself) it was some really dark and edgy stuff. (Yes, I did let loose a rather evil little chuckle just thinking about it). She told me to follow those words, to embrace those scenes, and let it out.

It worked. When I gave myself permission to tell the rather abnormal - I mean PARAnormal - story swirling around in my head, Justice Incarnate was born and became my first sale! Hooray!

Writing paranormal and combining it with romance serves my innate curiosity about storytelling. I love my process when writing the story offers up big and little surprises and connections along the way. For me, writing paranormal romance means combining a great adventure with the discovery of a great love. Fantasy? Sure! But that's the point. The paranormal angle sets my imagination free. When I started out, using real places in real time made me feel obligated to use them correctly, even as I admire those writers who can use a known setting with literary license.

As my writing skills continue to grow and improve with every book and writing effort, I feel readers can expect the same imagination and fantasy escape reading from me, no matter the setting. Though I've put out stories that are more lighthearted (The Hobbitville saga) my imagination still insists on applying a paranormal element. But that's okay, it's my strong suit. When authors find and embrace their strengths (Gayle's humor, my PARA-normalities) they tap into the real magic of writing and readers are in for a treat!

Live the adventure!

* * * * *
Isn't she fun? I urge you, beg you, ask you most politely, to check out her books. I've provided the links above to Justice Incarnate and The Pixie Chicks, but here's the link to her entire list of Kindle titles - http://tinyurl.com/regan-kindle.
If you want to know more about Regan, visit her at http://www.reganblack.com.


Regan Black said...

Oh, Gayle! Fairy cakes! You shouldn't have. (But I'm so glad you did)


E.J. Stevens said...

Lovely guest blog! :)
Paranormal Author E.J. Stevens
From the Shadows

Mary L. said...

Thank you both for sharing this morning!

Regan Black said...

Thanks for stopping by, Mary and E.J.!

night owl in IL said...

Hi Regan -
Great blog! Are there any fairy cakes left? lol

Lea Ellen {night owl in IL}

Laurie said...

Delightful post, Regan! Thanks for sharing a a few cool tidbits about your journey to the dark side!! LOL What a great idea you both had for this cross-post. We, the readers, truly benefit!

Helen Ginger said...

Gotta love a writer who followed her heart or calling. Great post.

Regan Black said...

Lea Ellen, did you find the fairy cake I saved you?

Thanks, Laurie and Helen for the support!

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