Message From The Author

LuAnn McLane

Genre: General Contemporary Romance, Contemporary Romance

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Author's Message


"When I first pitched this series of books, I called them my G.R.I.T. lit: Girls Raised in the (S)outh," LuAnn McLane says.
The author's love of spunky Southern characters -- and the television show Dancing With
the Stars
-- inspired her latest book, Dancing Shoes and Honky-Tonk Blues (Signet Eclipse).

"What I really loved about the show were the underdogs," McLane says. "The idea came to me to have a spoof where regular Joes would be the contestants."
She chose to set the book in a small Kentucky town because "[they] are full of quirky characters ... like the Jeff Foxworthy jokes but in a fun, warmhearted way."

The book takes place in Misty Creek, Ky., where waitress Abilene Harper decides to compete on the reality television show Dancing With the Rednecks, despite having two left feet. She ends up cha-cha-ing her way into the audience's hearts -- and the arms
of sexy dance instructor Rio Martin.

Her editor loved the idea so much that she pushed back McLane's scheduled release, The Real McCoy, so Dancing Shoes could be released at the same time as the second season of the real ABC television show.

McLane has always loved to dance but needed to brush up on her ballroom skills before she started writing, which she did by checking out instructional videos from her local library.

"I'm sure I looked silly dancing solo in my family room, but I had to learn the basics in order to write the dance sequences," she says.

In addition to making sure the dance steps ring true with readers, writing characters that are true to life is important to the author. "I've been told by readers that they 'know' my characters and feel as if they are real people.

"I wanted these books to resonate with small-town girls, for them to feel as if these books were about their lives. I hoped for the reader to become the heroine and to fall in love with the hero, not in a fantasy, but in a very real way." -- Stephanie Klose

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