The Author Spotlight at Romance Writers of Australia has focused on Stephanie Laurens, one of Australia’s most beloved historical romance author.
Below is an excerpt. Read her full interview with Juliet Madison here – Stephanie Laurens to the RWA Author Spotlight!
1. Welcome Stephanie, can you tell us a little about your latest release?
I’ve actually got two “latest releases” – the back-to-back releases of the first two books in the Cynster Sisters’ Trilogy – VISCOUNT BRECKENRDIGE TO THE RESCUE, and IN PURSUIT OF ELIZA CYNSTER. Both can be described as Errol Flynn rescues Elizabeth Bennet in the wilds of Scotland – lots of adventure, drama, kidnaps and rescues, escapes and pursuits, and, of course, through it all, lots of romance.
2. What do you love most about historical romances, and what do you think makes these stories so popular?
Historical romances were my first romances, and continue to be favourites of mine. There’s just something very satisfying in stepping into a much different world for a few hours of total relaxation – no phones, no internet, everything done at a much more relaxed pace. A much more human pace. I think that in terms of focusing on the emotional crux of an evolving romance, not having so much distraction is boon. There’s various elements that contribute to the popularity of historical romances, but I think the two most important are the slower, more focused, more intimate world, and the glamour of the aristocratic settings that are generally used.
3. Do you have a favourite book that you’ve written, or is this an impossible choice?!
I’ve never heard any career author talk of a favourite book. As Nora Roberts has said, the favourite book is always either the one being released now, or the one we’re currently writing. No other book really has much claim in an author’s mind.
4. Before writing, do you have any rituals or do anything specific to get you in the mood for your story?
Nope. I just sit down and write the next scene. I try to end each writing day having finished one scene and put down just the first line or two of the next, so I know exactly where I’m going – then the next day, I may or may not read over what I wrote the day before and then continue on, or equally may simply pick up right where I left off. My outline helps a lot in keeping me focused on exactly where my characters are going, and most importantly why.
5. What do you enjoy most in the process of creating a novel – researching, plotting/outlining, writing, or editing?
All of the above. I enjoy all of the aspects, but strive to keep focused on the point of it all – writing the next book as well as I can, meaning in the way that will most enthrall and entertain my readers. I guard against over-researching, over-outlining, over-editing – even over-writing! There’s only one goal for me, and that’s creating the best book I can.
6. Do you write detailed plot outlines and character descriptions before starting a new novel, or do you dive straight into the writing and see where it leads?
I started off doing the latter, and after about 10 books realized that…..