Guest blogger: Kallie Lane
People sometimes ask me why I write romance, particularly romantic suspense, when the genre doesn’t seem to be as popular at the moment. The reason is simple. It’s my passion. For me, it’s about doing what I love.
Writing novels has become a bit of a balancing act in recent years. I find myself back in school … scrambling to learn social media and promotion skills in order to reach my reading audience. This is an uphill battle for me, but writing romantic suspense makes the rest worthwhile.
My Shadow Soldiers and Black Force Renegades are my heroes. I have the honour to know real men and women like these; my brother recently retired from the military, and my niece still serves. Over the years, I’ve made military friends in Europe and the US as well. These men and women share the commitment to make the world a better, safer place for all of us, and have the courage and guts to defend what they believe in, above all else.
My heroines are hand-picked to balance out my heroes. They must have internal strength to overcome the conflicts of romancing alpha males, and understand when ‘I can do it myself’ doesn’t apply. They must teach their man the difference between sex and love, when he doesn’t always realise they deserve so much more. Coming off the battlefield and integrating back into normal, everyday life isn’t easy, especially when normal for them means high-octane jobs on the police force, search and rescue, and other thrill-seeking professions. Some of them remain tied to the military in reserve units, are still bounced from one hotbed of horror to the next, in between dealing with psychopaths and sociopaths in their day jobs.
My heroines and heroes are only as strong as their evil counterparts—the villains of my novels. It’s very important to me that fleshed-out villains have some redeeming, human qualities. They must be likeable and fit right in with the rest of us. They must also have goals, horrific goals, and believe their objectives are the highest and most important. The stronger my villains become—the stronger my heroines and heroes. And, yes, my villains often bring me down. It’s downright scary to be inside the head of a monster. But, I think it’s worthwhile, even if it does make for a few sleepless nights.
Defining the seeds—the core goals of my stories—is vital. My novels are character driven, and goals and motivations largely come from them. But, my protagonists don’t always lead me in the right direction, and although I have an overall plan in mind, I sometimes find myself lost and off-course. This is when other writers come into play. Authors are very generous for the most part. We often get together and toss around plot points and strategies for each other’s manuscripts. It’s amazing what discussions over great food and a bottle of wine can do. My support network is both in Montreal and Ottawa. Whenever the call for help goes out, we show up for each other and have a riotous time. Writing is largely a solitary profession, so we welcome the opportunity to see each other, kick back, and dig deep. Before we know it, we’re all heading back to our keyboards with clearer story solutions tucked under our belts. I’d be lost without the camaraderie of these sessions; this group of gals is my writing barometer.
My beta reader also plays a huge role in furthering my novels. She’s absolutely brilliant, a scientist by profession, and a great friend. She often spots areas in my books where I haven’t explained well enough. I have thoughts that I think I’ve transferred to paper, but, in fact, they’re still running around in my head. My readers wouldn’t have a clue if they didn’t have all the info.
All is to say … writing is real life for me. It has its ups and downs, but overall, it’s a dynamite ride. The launch pad for my novels is courage, and the end result is always love between the heroine and hero. We all need happy endings, don’t we? I have the privilege and honour to make my dreams come true. And, I thank God for readers like you, who grant me that opportunity and share in my dreams.
For more information about my books, please visit me at http://www.kallielane.com. I look forward to hearing from you. And please leave a comment on this blog if you’d like a chance to win a digital copy of Deadly Abandon!
Happy reading everyone!
Dark Abandon - A Shadow Soldier Novel #1 – available now
Deadly Abandon - A Shadow Soldier Novel #2- available now
Reckless Abandon - A Shadow Soldier Novel #3 – coming in 2013
Silent Deceit - A Black Force Renegades novella – coming soon
Your can find Kallie at: