by Anna Campbell
..I'll leave you all to finish that title once you've read the post!
We're talking about some hot potato books today! I read MISTRESS BY MISTAKE in manuscript and had to have a cold shower halfway through, it's that tsssss hot!
I've known Maggie what feels like forever. Maggie, I think we first touched base way back with Avon FanLit in 2006. This was a great writing contest that Avon ran and so many published authors are graduates (and wonderful Bandita Buddies like our very own contest queen, Louisa). Maggie is a hoot - funny, smart and witty. And all of those qualities translate to her writing.
You can find out more about Maggie and her alter ego Margaret Rowe at her website: http://www.maggierobinson.net/
Welcome to the lair, Maggie, and congratulations on the release of your debut historical romance MISTRESS BY MISTAKE. Can you tell us about the story?
Thanks so much for inviting me! And special thanks to Anna, who gave me a lovely cover quote for MISTRESS BY MISTAKE. I even have it framed.
MBM begins with a state of very mistaken identity. Sir Michael Bayard expects to find his brand-new mistress in his bed. Instead, it’s Charlotte Fallon, a straight-laced, lace-making spinster who is supposed to making excuses for her infamous sister’s absence. She goes a little beyond that.
I notice it’s part of a series called the COURTESAN COURT TRILOGY. That warms my heart, being an old courtesan fancier myself!
I’ve set the series on Jane Street, a fictional enclave of London’s most exclusive courtesans. My heroines find themselves there against their will, but they soon master their masters. MISTRESS BY MIDNIGHT (Dec 28, 2010) is Heathcliff and Cathy without the crazy and with a secret baby. MISTRESS BY MARRIAGE (out Spring 2011) features an icy hero and a firecracker heroine—a classic opposites attract story. You know who melts. Two novellas I’ve written also use the Jane Street setting. NOT QUITE A COURTESAN will appear in the anthology LORDS OF PASSION on November 30, 2010.
Ooh, sound delicious! Why do you think there’s been an upsurge in popularity in stories featuring courtesans?
If I’m going to be honest—and I do try to be—my courtesans are more or less accidental. But I think most of us would like to be experts at something, and there is a certain mystique about women who possess the charm to drive men mad. Well, except for Tiger Wood’s skanky mistresses.
Snork! In the lair, we LOVE call stories. Can you tell us yours?
It was for Margaret Rowe’s TEMPTING EDEN (more of her below). I worked in a high school library where I ran the after-school library program, and I knew from my agent something was happening after seven long months on submission. I had my cell phone with me all day as I shelved books. When it rang, it was late afternoon and just a few girls were still at school using the computers. I wanted to scream, but I was in the library and the signs I had printed myself told me not to. So I whispered and shook. And cried a little when I hung up. One of the girls was worried.
Great story, Maggie. You also write erotic historical romance as Margaret Rowe (which makes me giggle – MISTRESS BY MISTAKE is one of the hottest historicals I’ve ever read!). TEMPTING EDEN comes out this month from Berkley Heat. Can you tell us about this story?
TEMPTING EDEN is much darker—I’ve tortured my poor heroine quite thoroughly. Eden has to overcome Hell to find Heaven in her hero’s arms. This book is edgier and riskier than THE COURTESAN COURT books, and I fully expect people will have a visceral reaction to it. I’m polishing my body armor even as we speak. I may call on the Banditas for back-up.
Girding on gladiator sword as we speak! Do you find any major differences when you’re writing as Margaret Rowe and as Maggie Robinson?
Margaret writes about things that Maggie has never done, or at least won’t admit to. Margaret can be as bad and hot as Maggie will let her. Maggie is funnier and lighter, but still hot, of course. I feel fortunate I have two avenues to express my demented duality. It’s better than therapy and I get paid too!
Do you have any advice for aspiring writers out there?
Don’t give up. Try to write every day, even if you’re only tweaking what you wrote yesterday. It took five years for me to get an agent, six to sell, seven to publish. I have a totally supportive family, which is a huge help. Most of all, I was lucky to come across wonderful writing friends online who share my dream and keep me motivated and laughing.
Thanks, Maggie! Is there anything you'd like to ask the Bandits and Bandita Buddies?
Twirling black Bandita mustache* Who do you like to see tortured by the evil romance writer—the hero or the heroine? Who’s your favourite tortured h/h?
Hey, who left the mustache cupboard unlocked? I'll see you when I get home, Mr. Sven!
Maggie has very kindly offered one commenter today a signed copy of MISTRESS BY MISTAKE along with some promo goodies. Good luck, everyone!