RT Daily Blog

Leann Harris On Her Inspiration For Creating Military Heroes

BY , APRIL 14, 2012 | PERMALINK

Series author Leann Harris is known for writing shorter romances that pack a punch, and writing incredibly strong heroes who readers can't help but fall for. Her latest story, Redemption Ranch, features timid army soldier, Tyler. Today, we hear from the author about where she finds the inspiration to craft such wonderful and heartwarming characters. 

People often ask how do I get story ideas? They are everywhere. The idea for Redemption Ranch came from the Military Channel program entitled Dogs of War, about dogs the US Army used during WWII. Americans volunteered their dogs and they were trained and used in the Pacific. That show was followed by another entitled No Dog Left Behind about dogs American soldiers found in Iraq.  


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Tags: Inspirational
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Inside The RT 2012 Giant Saturday Book Fair!

BY , APRIL 14, 2012 | PERMALINK

With over 300 authors in attendance, today’s annual book fair was a buffet of writers and the thousands of readers who came out to celebrate them. Convention attendees mixed with the general public, and everyone had something to say — and a laundry list of authors to see.

Francine Pascal, Sue Grafton, Susan Elizabeth Phillips and James Rollins were among the headlining authors and the lines to get your books signed by one of these big names snaked around the room. But mixed among the crowd were other reader favorites like J.R. Ward, BJ Daniels and JA Konrath. And this year the “YA Alley” housed over 60 young adult authors all looking forward to meeting fans. Authors of world renown, such as Alyson Noel, Ally Carter and Melissa de la Cruz and Kelly Armstrong, joined new-school writers like Veronica Roth, Amy Plum and Colleen Houck.

For everyone who couldn't make it to the event, we wanted to share some inside tidbits from some of our favorite authors. So we asked a group of writers to tell us something about themselves that readers might not know, and then something about their heroine that they have not shared before.


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Tags: RT Daily Blog, Convention
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We Honor the Outstanding Authors and Books of 2011

BY , APRIL 14, 2012 | PERMALINK

At yesterday's annual awards ceremony RT recognized the authors and books of 2011, which stood out from the rest of genre fiction. The ceremony also celebrated some of the authors who have made a huge impact on the booklover community as pioneers.

Bestselling author Sue Grafton opened the ceremony with her keynote speech (after we surprised her with a room full of people singing Happy Birthday). She chatted a bit about the path that she took to success, and gave aspiring authors (and readers) some rules to live by — including find a good enemy whose misfortunes you can be glad about when you're having a bad day.

Sue Grafton addresses the crowd


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Tags: RT Daily Blog, Convention
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Up Close And Personal With Contemporary Authors Susan Elizabeth Phillips, Francine Pascal And Jodi Thomas

BY Whitney Sullivan, APRIL 14, 2012 | PERMALINK

It’s no secret that I love contemporary romance. The Chicago Stars and Thomas’ Texan heroes are some of my very favorite men of fiction. And I'm pretty sure that you can trace my love of contemporary romance back to the Sweet Valley High books by Francine Pascal that I devoured as a tween. So when I was asked to moderate yesterday's author chat with three of the biggest names in the genre, Francine PascalSusan Elizabeth Phillips and Jodi Thomas, I was positively over the moon!

It was a treat to hear the three authors chat about crafting their stories, get an insider's look at their favorite characters, and talk about how they keep their contemporary tales timeless. 


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Tags: RT Daily Blog, Convention, Romance
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Power of Passion: Keeping Your Enthusiasm Fresh

BY Elissa Petruzzi, APRIL 14, 2012 | PERMALINK

Romance has been a booming genre since it took off in the early 1970s, however, how do authors who have been writing for most of their careers keep the spark of creativity alive? Yesterday, authors Rosanne Bittner, Jennifer Blake and RT’s own Kathryn Falk sat down for a discussion about how writing is as much a business as it is a passion. With a collective (and incredibly impressive) 95 years in the industry, these pioneers of the genre shared essential tips and tricks for not just surviving in publishing, but conquering the business side of romance writing!

Passion is a big part of romance novels, sure, but according to publishing pioneer Rosanne Bittner, it's also the fuel that will power your career. "Passion can help our careers by bringing us new perspective and keeping us at the computer," says Bittner. It was that drive that kept Bittner and her panel mate Jennifer Blake, writing — on manual typewriters, with carbon paper and whiteout, no less — with full-time jobs and children and husbands to feed and clothe.


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Tags: Aspiring Authors, RT Daily Blog, Convention
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Part(y)ing Thoughts: Twenties-style Talent!

BY , APRIL 14, 2012 | PERMALINK

At tonight's nighttime convention party, the Gangster Cafe Talent Quest, we did it up Prohibition style! Feathers, crystals and pearls adorned the necks of guests, but it wouldn’t be a party hosted by author Heather Graham if there wasn’t a paranormal twist. Flappers, flyboys, tycoons (and even some teetotalers) with a supernatural spin were all in attendance so there was a great mix of fangs and fur along with fringe and glitz. 

Host Heather Graham and cohorts entertained the crowd with a musical play inspired by the Jazz Age


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Tags: RT Daily Blog, Convention, Paranormal/Urban Fantasy
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Series Romance Fans Unite

BY , APRIL 13, 2012 | PERMALINK

This morning we started the day singing the praises of all that is excellent in the world of series romance. These short format stories capture our imagination (and are quick reads, perfect for fitting into our already-busy lives) and today we got to hang out with some of the readers that supply us with these fantastic tales. At the “Celebrate the Passion and Power of Series Romance” reader event, we met authors from several of Harlequin’s series romance lines. These popular writers included Zuri Day, Caitlin Crews, Lynn Raye Harris, Jade Lee (aka Kathy Lyons), Kimberly Lang, Lisa Renee Jones and Maisey Yates.

Before the event started each of them introduced themselves and gave readers a bit of an insider's look at their new covers.

Zuri Day revealed that it is actually actor Christian Keyes who is on the cover of her new book, Diamond Dreams.


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Tags: RT Daily Blog, Convention, Romance
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The E-Book Expo At The 2012 Booklovers Convention Exposed!

BY , APRIL 13, 2012 | PERMALINK

When it comes to e-book publishing, there’s no denying that change is the name of the game. Digital formats allow authors to push boundaries and write between genres, creating truly unusual characters and scenarios. At yesterday's fifth annual E-Book, Indie Publisher And Graphic Novel Expo, we chatted with some of our favorite e-book authors to find out the trends they are noticing in e-books and what type of story elements they would love to see taken to the extreme in upcoming digital releases. 

Joely Sue Burkhart, a 2011 RT Reviewers' Choice Award nominee for her story Lady Doctor Wyre, told us that she's thrilled by the recent blending of genres. As for a story that hasn't been told that she would like to read, Burkhart responded that an interesting mix would be romance and horor. Perhaps, even, some kind of serial killer romance. If she wrote one, the author revealed the title would probably be "Killer Of My Heart."

Joely Sue Burkhart


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Tags: RT Daily Blog, Convention, E-Book
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Part(y)ing Thoughts: A Night Of Scottish Delight!

BY , APRIL 13, 2012 | PERMALINK

Tonight the Clan McFae, a magical author collective, helped us channel the aura of days gone by with their Magical Scottish Fling. We partied like it was 1622, as booklovers turned out in their Scottish best (complete with brogues). There were bagpipes playing, kilts swirling, and more than a few lovely ladies all dressed up for Highland goodness. The evening began with a costume party that gave us a chance to “ohh” and “ahh” over everyone’s stylish garb, but it wasn’t long before the music came on and we were all filling up the dance floor!


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Tags: RT Daily Blog, Convention
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Up Close And Personal With Three Of Our Favorite Paranormal Writers: Frost, Harris and Singh

BY , APRIL 12, 2012 | PERMALINK

Today RT convention attendees got a bit of insight on the process that authors Jeaniene Frost, Charlaine Harris and Nalini Singh go through as they write some of the most popular paranormal series on the market. In the Paranormal Chat this afternoon these genre headliners let us inside of their worlds (both the fictional and real ones) and, of course, talked about what readers can expect next!

The discussion started off quickly, as the authors spoke about their favorite character transformation over the course of their series. Frost said she has been very pleased at the changes in her “Wicked Witch-y” character Justina. While for Harris, it is Sookie who has changed the most as she has really come into her own despite the enormous paranormal responsibilities piled onto her young shoulders. And Singh said it was Nikita, Sascha’s mother, who has the most interesting character development because we still don’t know Nikita's motivations for rejecting her daughter.  

No chat between these three ladies would be complete without discussing those fanged heroes and heroines we all love so much. The authors all talked a bit about why they chose to write series about relationships with younger women and not just older men, but much, much, much older men.


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Tags: RT Daily Blog, Convention, Paranormal/Urban Fantasy
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