I’m excited to be here today to talk about my favorite part of writing, “Where in the World are your Characters.” As an international traveler to exotic locations, I turned to sharing my romantic adventures by writing travel features for many of the major cruise lines, as well as travelogues for smaller presses. As an avid romance reader, I realized I could share my travels with romance readers like myself. When I started writing Amazon Connection (my first romantic suspense adventure), it started out as a contemporary romance. It was like eating milquetoast. Something was missing.
Have you ever read a book where you’re ‘told’ your characters are in another country? They mention the country, a town, or city maybe once or twice in the book, but that’s all. There is never any other mention of the country, or any description of the location throughout the entire book to give you an idea of where in the world your characters really are. Maybe it’s the travel writer in me, but I suddenly realized I was trying to write like other writers. I needed to enhance my stories by having my characters not only pit themselves against each other and the villain, but their environment as well. Damn. I’ve done that walk in the rainforest. Path? What Path? I did the alligator hunting at midnight with a full moon and glistening water hibiscus scene where the small outboard motor conked out leaving me stranded. I’ve seen those bird-eating spiders crawl out of their nests in the ground, anacondas stretched to full length, and the small villages and indigenous people in the back of beyond close up and personal. I decided that Amazon Connection would be much more interesting to have my heroine have to deal with all this, especially if she’s afraid of things that go bump in the night!
So, I asked myself, why in the world would I not share all these wonderful, exciting, romantic experiences with my readers, while revealing my character’s inner strengths and weaknesses through their interaction and reaction to their surroundings. Give them a chance to overcome some of their insecurities, weaknesses, become more humble, and even fall in love against all the odds. And, let the reader know just where in the world their characters are.
Featured title: Amazon Connection
Shanghai Connection coming soon!
Available: The Wild Rose Press
Author Web site: www.carolhenry.org
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