Thanks for having me at Fresh Fiction. I’ve written over a hundred books. And after writing a hundred romance books, it’s not so easy to keep my storylines fresh. But with some stories, it’s easier than others. Writing contemporary romance can be more difficult, because there’s only so much I can make up in a real city like Seattle, with characters having real careers in real life and death situations.
So here are five ways I kept it fresh with ROADSIDE ASSISTANCE.
- Cynthia Nichols, the heroine of the story, is a big, beautiful woman. Yes, she’s big by society’s conventions. But she’s not a cliché. Cyn is not a hot mess. She’s a strong, independent, successful woman. And like all women, she has insecurities about her looks and relationships. I loved making Cyn confident yet needing what the hero gives her—true love.
- An Italian family—in Seattle. I’m part Italian, and I grew up in the Northeast where it was pretty easy to spot my peeps. (Think Jersey Shore, only with normal people.) Then I moved out West, and I swear, I’ve never seen more Scandinavians in my life! So I wanted to give my characters some of my background. The heroine’s family cooks big and loves big. The louder the better.
- The hero is just a good guy. Period. Foley is sexy, gruff, has tats and muscles, and is well-rounded character. His mother raised him right. Period. No angst, no tormented hero. Yes, he and Cyn have obstacles to overcome, but if anyone deserves some good karma, it’s Foley. Because that’s one guy who treats people right.
- Amazing secondary characters. Yeah, I said amazing–and it’s true. All the characters in my Body Shop Bad Boys books rock. (You never know when you might see them in their own books some day. *wink*) The four book series revolves around the four mechancis working the shop. But everyone who says more than a line or two has a real story of their own, even if I haven’t written it out. Rena, oh, Rena. I love her. So does everyone else. And Sam. Lou. Liam… They make the story better and richer for their presence. And they sure as hell like to give Foley a hard time.
- A secondary romance—for Foley’s mom. So many romances focus on a central set of characters. There’s nothing wrong with that. But love doesn’t stop when you hit thirty. Older people—and by older, I mean those with adult children—can have romances too. Eileen Sanders, Foley’s mom, deserves her second chance. Not that Foley doesn’t still look out for her, but come on. It’s time she got her happily ever after since having raised that hell-raiser Foley.
You can meet the gang at Webster’s Garage on September 6th, when ROADSIDE ASSISTANCE releases.
Thanks for having me!
About Marie Harte
Caffeine addict, boy referee, and romance aficionado, USA Today bestselling author Marie Harte has over 100 books published with more constantly on the way. Writing romance, and in particular erotic romance, across the genres, she’s created stories set on other worlds, among paranormal creatures, and between normal men and women seeking true love.
Marie is a confessed bibliophile and devotee of action movies. Whether hiking in Central Oregon, biking around town, or hanging at the local tea shop, she’s constantly plotting to give everyone a happily ever after. Visit her website and fall in love.
Good To Go | McCauley Brothers | Wicked Warrens | The Works | Ethereal Foes | Best Revenge | Mark of Lycos | Body Shop Bad Boys
Underneath the axle grease and tats He’s a gentleman Foley Sanders figured he’ll always be content with a life of cars and casual hookups. Until a run-in with Cyn, a statuesque firecracker with a hate-on for men, leaves him bewitched and intrigued-much to her annoyance.
Maybe Cynthia Nichols was a little hard on Foley, that muscular, tattooed, super-hot mechanic next door. But she’s tired of feeling defensive about her size and has sworn off men. She’s got a new job, new life, perfect plan. Foley has trouble written all over him-no way is she going to fall for his charms.
Foley might look like a bad idea, but underneath, he’s all gentleman. Too bad Cyn’s not buying it. What’s a bad boy to do when the goddess of his dreams won’t give him the time of day?
Romance Contemporary [Sourcebooks Casablanca, On Sale: September 6, 2016, Paperback / e-Book, ISBN: 9781492630296 / eISBN: 9781492630302]