For the second book in the series, HOT, SHOT, AND BOTHERED, my biggest challenge was making an existing relationship as much fun as characters meeting for the first time. This is no small task. I'm sure any reader of genre fiction can rattle off a long list of series that declined because the core romance fizzled.
To avoid that fate, I needed to create conflict between the lovers. Lilly, a TV news photographer, is covering a deadly wildfire. In the midst of the fire and evacuation, a body is discovered in the local lake. Lilly is increasingly drawn to investigate what she thinks is a murder. Her boyfriend, also a journalist, believes they have a duty to focus on the wildfire, which is both a public safety issue and something that their friends and co-workers are depending on them to do. They clash over which story to cover.
This worked okay in my first draft, but for the second I decided to add more depth to their conflict. Instead of the dead woman being a stranger, I made her someone Lilly used to know during her wild-teenage years. Lilly is reluctant to confide in her boyfriend because she's not proud of that time in her life. She also feels an obligation to the dead woman, who helped her at a pivotal moment. This one change explained both Lilly's need to investigate the murder and her reluctance to explain why.
But conflict is just a small part of a good romantic subplot. What I adore as a reader isn't seeing how characters in love are broken up, but rather how they come back together again. Lilly Hawkins is flawed--she's prone to cynicism and afraid of getting hurt--but for me this makes the times when she overcomes her flaws all the more meaningful. And what is love, if not the triumph of our better selves over fear and cynicism?
41 comments posted.
the only romance that i will read has to have a little mystery in them
Sounds like a fun read!
Like you, I also love romance books with a hint of mystery!
I do enjoy mysteries with some romance in them and adding tension to the relationship makes it more realistic to me.
Lilly Hawkins is flawed, afraid of getting hurt? Well, who isn't it? I definately enjoy mysteries with romance in them. The more realistic (and hot) the better!
your books sound great. i love mystery with romance added to the mix.
I really enjoy mysteries with some good relationships added in!
Romance and mystery =- what more could a person ask for.
I like the extra depth you added to the conflict. I look forward to reading more. Thanks for visiting.
When you're a child, and you read your first mystery, you can't get enough. Then you read your first mystery with a romance sub-plot. You've got your feet wet with a taboo book your Mother warned you about, and not only do you hide the book, you thirst for more!! I like the sub-plots tastefully done, and to flow along with the storyline. Congratulations on your latest book. It sounds like a good read, and I'll be looking forward to it very much.
A really good mystery will not need the romance aspect. Just my 2 cents.
I have loved mystery-romance combo's since I discovered them as a teenager.
All humans and their pets require love and excitement, so novels of romance and mystery provide just that. Of course, this novel hits that mark.....need fulfilled!
Mystery and romance! This is my type of book.
What's a mystery without romance!
Romance is #1 and a mystery is an added interest.
I love romance with mystery added in. Your books sound like fun reading.
Mystery and romance... what a great combo! Your books sound like something I would love to read!
I love mysteries and love romance books - so having both in one book is great!
I must have romance with most of my books, if not all of them........mystery books a big YES!
ystery and romance equals a great read.
Mysteries go down best when they have a romantic interest and flaws makes them more human.
A little romance is always welcome, and while character driven stories always do well, in a mystery, the mystery must rule!
I love mysteries with romance which makes the story of much greater interest. My favorite books to read are mysteries and contemporary romance stories anyway. Love books with a storyline that gets you so involved that it seems real and true (even when it's fiction)! Your book covers are bright and cute.
I love the romance with mystery. I love the twist and turns of the story and the chemistry between the heroine and hero.
Love to win Nora McFarland"s 2 books.....they have all the ingredients that I love in a book....mystery and romance....firstname.lastname@example.org
I love all of it the conflict, the getting back to the love. I love it all, but sometimes, I admit, I like the conflict a little bit more, depending on the conflict of course.
This sounds like a great book and would love to win and read. This is a new author for me and would love to win and read this book. Thanks for the giveaway and the chance to win.
This is the type of book I like read, a bit of romance mixed with some
Mysteries and romance go hand and hand in my reading list so finding a new author is like getting a gift. Your books sound interesting and fun and I'm looking forward to reading them. The best of luck to you and I'll spread the word to watch out for you.
have never read any of your books...looking forward to it.sounds very promising!
I'm an Agatha Christie fan from way back. The books look amazing.
Love mysteries with romance in it.... My favorite Agatha Christie books always have a bigger romannce element...
I read all the Agatha Christie books when I was younger. I need to reread them. I love a little romance mixed with my mysteries, too.
The books sounds great. Thanks for giving me a chance to win it.
I'll read most anything that's got a little romance mixed in.
Thanks for the great post! I can read both separately, but I have no real preference. If they are mixed, the more the better!
Mystery with a little romance makes for a better story. I
Definately going to get my hands on this story!
After historical novels, my favorites are definitely romantic suspense/mystery.
LOVE mysteries, a bit of romance spices things up.
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