Writer Interview: Veronica Scott (Romance & Adventure from the Ancient Nile to the Deeps of Space!)

veronicascott:

Such fun to be interviewed by E. P.! Part of it was a google chat in real time so some of my answers may seem a bit terse – sorry~

Originally posted on E. P. Beaumont:

Veronica Scott’s work ranges from paranormal romances set in ancient Egypt to action-adventure space operas (Mission to Mahjundar, Wreck of the Nebula Dream, Escape from Zulaire). I first met her on Six Sentence Sunday; we have continued our acquaintance on Weekend Writing Warriors.

Her romantic leads are capable and daring with complementary skill sets and attraction that slow-burns to sizzling conclusion, generally with things exploding in the background. Because nothing builds romantic tension like explosions!

She tweets about her nonfictional inspirations (including history, archaeology, astronomy) upcoming work, and feline Muses at @vscottheauthor.

This interview was conducted by e-mail with follow-up by Google chat. We had a far-ranging conversation and look forward to more!

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Cats As Victorian Era People for Wednesday Whimsy

???????????????????????????????Last week I did a post on Victorian trade cards featuring dogs as people so it’s only fair that this week we look at the cats. This demure lady to the left could be in a Jane Austen novel, I think – love her hat.

“The smallest feline is a masterpiece.” ― Leonardo da Vinci

“The way to get on with a cat is to treat it as an equal – or even better, as the superior it knows itself to be.” ― Elizabeth Peters, The Snake, the Crocodile and the Dog (I love her books, by the way!)

But I am a cat, and no cat anywhere ever gave anyone a straight answer.” ― Peter S. Beagle, The Last Unicorn

“I am the Cat who walks by himself, and all places are alike to me.” ― Rudyard ???????????????????????????????Kipling, The Cat That Walked by Himself: And Other Stories

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“No matter how much the cats fight, there always seem to be plenty of kittens. ” ― Abraham Lincoln???????????????????????????????

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The Victorians seemed to enjoy putting three nearly identical animals on trade cards. I’ve seen frogs on bicycles, dogs running…but I liked these three industriously sewing cat-ladies best.

“That’s the great secret of creativity. You treat ideas like cats: you make them follow you.” ― Ray Bradbury, Zen in the Art of Writing

“There are no ordinary cats.” ― Colette

These two at the bottom left and right are my personal favorites among the vintage cards! But of course we mustn’t forget my own Jake….Jake upside down???????????????????????????????003

Dear Author’s Take on WRECK OF THE NEBULA DREAM

Wreck-of-the-Nebula-DreamFinalMedGot up yesterday, had a leisurely breakfast, was drinking my tea and perusing the social media and favorite websites and…..OMG, Jayne of Dear Author reviewed Wreck of the Nebula Dream (my “Titanic in space” scifi adventure novel)!!!! I was thrilled and SO excited that she enjoyed the book overall.  Made my whole day :-)

Here are a few extracts from the review and please go over to the Dear Author website to read the entire review, which received a B rating, about which I’m also ecstatic.

“I was 4 chapters into this story when it dawned on me that I was lost in it and totally concentrating on this created world….The details of the doomed Titanic’s fate are cleverly re imagined in a space voyage…the tension builds, then recedes just a little, then increases, then is countered just a bit, then smacks the reader around some more before smacking the characters even worse. And then when I think this must be it, they’re safe, right? they aren’t. Safe that is….”

Wreck of the Nebula Dream was a 2013 SFR Galaxy Award Winner and a Laurel Wreath Finalist…

The story:

Traveling unexpectedly aboard the luxury liner Nebula Dream on its maiden voyage across the galaxy, Sectors Special Forces Captain Nick Jameson is ready for ten relaxing days, and hoping to forget his last disastrous mission behind enemy lines. He figures he’ll gamble at the casino, take in the shows, maybe even have a shipboard fling with Mara Lyrae, the beautiful but reserved businesswoman he meets.

All his plans vaporize when the ship suffers a wreck of Titanic proportions. Captain and crew abandon ship, leaving the 8000 passengers stranded without enough lifeboats and drifting unarmed in enemy territory. Aided by Mara, Nick must find a way off the doomed ship for himself and several other innocent people before deadly enemy forces reach them or the ship’s malfunctioning engines finish ticking down to self destruction.

But can Nick conquer the demons from his past that tell him he’ll fail these innocent people just as he failed to save his Special Forces team? Will he outpace his own doubts to win this vital race against time?

Amazon  Barnes & Noble  All Romance eBooks iTunes  Google Play   Kobo

Audiobook, narrated by Actor Michael Riffle – Available Now at Amazon and iTunes

Outside Their Existence Weekend Writing Warriors

WeWriWa buttonHere’s the link to the Weekend Writing Warriors central page, so you can visit all the participants sharing excerpts today…A fun way to sample new books and find new writers!

We’re onto a new story of mine, a WIP that still needs a lot of work. Mark, an ex-Special Forces soldier in the Sectors, has been hired by the Outlier Empress to rescue a kidnap victim who’s been taken to the border planet Freemarket, where anything goes and the authorities are usually hands off. Kind of like Las Vegas…he’s broken into the house of  Barent Kliin, the kidnapper, persuaded Alessandra to go with him and fled in a stolen car, pursued by the bad guys and the planetary police. They collided with a cargo hauler…Mark knocked the driver out and assisted Alessandra from their wrecked vehicle, after which the couple flee into the crowded marketplace but are now trapped…until a strange little being showed up, offering to help…having no choice, Mark and Sandy flee with the creature and fall into a tent. Last week the owner of the tent greeted them as being “travelers”.

Mark couldn’t decide if they were in more danger from their pursuers outside or from this uncanny new player. 

            A second group of Kliin’s mercenaries and local police ran by, two men stopping to stare into the tent where Mark stood. Cursing under his breath, he shoved Sandy behind him and aimed his blaster at the nearest man.

            “Do not.”  The woman who’d greeted them was standing at his side, although he hadn’t seen her move. She’d wrapped one slender, seven fingered hand around the barrel of  his M27 , pushing the weapon aside, despite his resistance. “They can’t see us, we’re outside their existence. For now.”

On a totally different note, Dear Author has reviewed Wreck of the Nebula Dream and given it a B! I mention that here because I’ve excerpted that novel for WeWriWa and also so many of you have been kind enough to read it as well….WHEE!!!!!

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SciFi Romance #AuthorTag Continues

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Having been tagged earlier this week by the wonderful Pauline Baird Jones, who also writes science fiction romance, I thought I’d continue the SFR theme and tag three more authors, whose books I’ve enjoyed.

First would have to be Rachel Bach – I totally love Devi Morris, the heroine in the PARADOX Series and regularly tell people this kickass mercenary is the toughest science fiction heroine I’ve seen since Ripley. (Or maybe Aeryn Sun in Farscape.)  Here’s her webpage: http://www.rachelaaron.net/ . She also writes as Rachel Aaron.Heaven's queen Here’s what Rachel said in a recent USA Today/HEA column I wrote, regarding the appeal that science fiction has for her:

I love science-fiction because of its humanity. No matter how farfetched, every SF story is ultimately a tale of our shared future. SF authors get to explore the farthest edge of what humans are capable of, both good and bad, on a universe-sized stage. That’s always a good show, and it’s why SF and romance work so well together. They’re both genres about people exploring new ground, and I think that’s beautiful.

in the blackNext let’s tag Sheryl Nantus, whose TALES FROM THE EDGE series combines the feel of Firefly with some great mystery. I want her to write a lot more volumes in the series! Here’s her website: https://sherylnantus.wordpress.com/ Her quote about science fiction romance from the same column goes as follows:

I believe that humanity will go exploring out far into space and no matter how far we go from our native planet our emotional needs are going to follow — we all want to find that one person who hopefully we’ll end up living happily ever after with. Writing science-fiction romance lets me show that humanity will survive because of, and in spite of, our overwhelming need to want and be wanted, the need to love and be loved. No matter how far we roam from Earth we’ll need those emotions to survive.

And third, for today I’ll tag PJ Dean, whose FELIG CHRONICLES are fun and feisty and I’m so enamored of one FELIGcharacter that I got myself unofficially adopted by the lady (Mattie, the heroine’s mother) LOL.  Here’s her website: http://www.pjdeanwriter.weebly.com PJ is taking time out from SFR to write historical romance at the moment but hopefully there’ll be more FELIG goodness to come! Whaat she had to say in the USAT article:

The thing I find most appealing about writing science-fiction romance is that it is limitless. A writer is only limited by his or her imagination. Unlike other romance genres, that follow a set of established, stale rules, this one is free from those stuffy conventions that could stifle innovation.

Of course there are many other wonderful authors of science fiction romance – thank goodness! – and you can find 18 more of them interviewed in the USAT column, which was written upon the occasion of the SFR Galaxy Awards.

Ok, ladies, TAG, you’re it!

 

Dogs As Victorian Era People for Wednesday Whimsy

???????????????????????????????I thought in honor of the Westminster Dog Show going on this week, I’d make my Wednesday Whimsy about some charming Victorian trade cards I found with dogs portrayed as people. (I already did an earlier Wednesday Whimsy about dogs being dogs, which is here.)

This somewhat wistful gentleman to the left has no advertising on his card but the rest of the group are ???????????????????????????????from a clothing store in Paris…

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She Tweaked the Stellar Display Tuesday Teaser

Tuesday TeaserHere’s the link for the central post with links to all the Teasers: http://on.fb.me/1Dz4BgG

Today I’m in the mood for a scene from the award winning Wreck of the Nebula Dream, my first published SFR, loosely based on the sinking of the Titanic, but set on a spaceliner in the far future. My hero, Nick Jameson, a Sectors Special Forces operator, meets a most unusual fellow passenger:

Wreck-of-the-Nebula-DreamFinalMedIntrigued, Nick decided to explore, following a narrow corridor, then up a winding staircase, all metal and wood anachronism. Wherever else SMT might have cut corners or scrimped on costs, they certainly have been lavish with the elements of the retro decor, at least on this level of the ship. As he climbed the last risers of the staircase, Nick stopped short. He was rarely astonished by anything after all his years in the service, but the builders of the Nebula Dream had created a breathtaking illusion that, on this wooden deck, one was standing completely exposed to the starry heavens.

Slowly, Nick came up the final five stairs and walked away from the elaborate wrought iron guardrail, staring at blazing constellations of stars.

“Amazing, is it not?” came a woman’s voice from the far side of the observatory. The tone was husky, faintly amused.

Surprised at himself, Nick wheeled reflexively. How did I fail to notice I wasn’t alone? Inattention could get a man killed in his line of work. Lucky for him, attack and assassination were not too probable on this luxury liner.

Despite her alluring voice, his anonymous companion proved to be elderly, her pale white skin translucent. Huge blue eyes glowed in the semidarkness, like a Terran feline’s would. Dressed completely in black, she wore layer upon layer of elegant, expensive black lace to the floor, subtly patterned with tiny diamonds and other gemstones he didn’t recognize. Her left hand was curled tightly around a massive carved ebony walking stick inlaid with silver runes. At its top was an enameled knob, some kind of picture painted in delicate tones on ivory. Her hand obscured the details of the artwork. She was seated on a bench, a shawl lying carelessly draped beside her.

And she was unmistakably a native of the planet Mellure.

Realizing he was staring rudely, Nick belatedly saluted her.

“Very proper, indeed,” she said, with only a simple nod, as befitted her far superior rank in the galactic order of things. “You’ve been to my home world?”

“No, my lady, I was raised from the age of nine at the Star Guard Orphanage, which is visited from time to time by Mellurean consultants.” Nick hesitated. Entranced though he was with the observatory, he didn’t wish to intrude on her. It was folly to intrude on a Mellurean. “I’ll leave you to your contemplations, madame. Unless you’d like me to stand guard while you’re here? Ensure your privacy?”

“Outstandingly proper,” she complimented him again, her voice warmer. “No, stay and enjoy the scene with me.” Patting the empty area of the bench beside her, she moved the shawl aside. It fell to the deck in a shimmering cascade of ebony silk. “You may sit, if you would like.”

Nick walked to her but declined the invitation to sit. Picking up the shawl, he carefully set it on the bench. Standing with his head thrown back, staring up at the astounding array of stars, he chuckled. “Either this ship is wildly off course, or else you’ve been influencing the AI ganglion in charge of this chamber.”

“And why would you make such an accusation?” She tilted her head with the coyness of a woman two-thirds her age and gave him a half smile.

“Because that star is Mellure,” he said, pointing at the bright­est light pulsing directly above them, “and her attendant twelve planets. And as they are firmly located in Sector Seven, while we’re cruising through Sector Sixteen, this is not a possibility.”

She laughed outright now, her amusement rich and genuine. “I doubt anyone else would have caught the change. I am Lady Damais Niklaeson.” She introduced herself as if it were a reward for his cleverness. “Yes, I’ve tweaked the stellar display of which SMT is so proud.”

The Story
Traveling unexpectedly aboard the luxury liner Nebula Dream on its maiden voyage across the galaxy, Sectors Special Forces Captain Nick Jameson is ready for ten relaxing days, and hoping to forget his last disastrous mission behind enemy lines. He figures he’ll gamble at the casino, take in the shows, maybe even have a shipboard fling with Mara Lyrae, the beautiful but reserved businesswoman he meets.

All his plans vaporize when the ship suffers a wreck of Titanic proportions. Captain and crew abandon ship, leaving the 8000 passengers stranded without enough lifeboats and drifting unarmed in enemy territory. Aided by Mara, Nick must find a way off the doomed ship for himself and several other innocent people before deadly enemy forces reach them or the ship’s malfunctioning engines finish ticking down to self destruction.

But can Nick conquer the demons from his past that tell him he’ll fail these innocent people just as he failed to save his Special Forces team? Will he outpace his own doubts to win this vital race against time?

 

 

Travelers to Where? Weekend Writing Warriors

WeWriWa buttonHere’s the link to the Weekend Writing Warriors central page, so you can visit all the participants sharing excerpts today…A fun way to sample new books and find new writers!

We’re onto a new story of mine, a WIP that still needs a lot of work. Mark, an ex-Special Forces soldier in the Sectors, has been hired by the Outlier Empress to rescue a kidnap victim who’s been taken to the border planet Freemarket, where anything goes and the authorities are usually hands off. Kind of like Las Vegas…he’s broken into the house of  Barent Kliin, the kidnapper, persuaded Alessandra to go with him and fled in a stolen car, pursued by the bad guys and the planetary police. They collided with a cargo hauler…Mark knocked the driver out and assisted Alessandra from their wrecked vehicle, after which the couple flee into the crowded marketplace but are now trapped…until a strange little being showed up, offering to help…having no choice, Mark and Sandy flee with the creature and fall into a tent:

           Mark stood and reached to help Sandy regain her feet, relieving her of the heavy bag. She staggered as soon as she put her weight on the knee she’d twisted escaping the wrecked groundcar. 

          “Welcome,” said someone from deep in the recesses of the tent.

           Still supporting Sandy, trying to shield her from whoever was behind them, Mark turned.

            A veiled woman, dressed head to toe in shimmering lavender, was standing a few feet away, as if guarding the entrance to the second, larger room Mark glimpsed.

            “I’m sorry we’re intruding,” Sandy said breathlessly in between panting breaths. “The little – the sentient thought you could help us.”

            “The Nelafinari are never wrong in their assessment of travelers,” their hostess answered, putting a special emphasis on the last word.

Note from me: Life changing decisions to be made by Mark and Sandy shortly. We’ll keep going with the scene next week.

WitchesBroomNebula

Romance In A Glance Valentine Whimsy

010As I collect my Victorian era trade cards, the romance novelist in me is most fascinated by the ones that seem to encapsulate an entire romance in a single glance. I’ve been saving these cards for my Valentine’s Day whimsy post. Before we get to those, I think it’s amusing that the 1880’s had their version of “Victoria’s Secret Angels” (some concepts are timeless, apparently) even though these ladies to the left here are advertising cigarettes…and for this post I’m considering them to be Cupids…

This first card to the right is my very favorite and for some reason it reminds me of ???????????????????????????????Georgette Heyer Regency novels (which I love with a passion…). I realize it doesn’t seem to be depicting the Regency (and I’m no expert) but something about it really appeals to me. Probably the man in uniform with the broad shoulders and her very demure face.

Moving along, this next one could be an entire novel I think. My take is that the dashing musketeer or cavalier is trying to make his case with the maid, while the eager lady of the house is just now coming through the door. (Of course, he is bringing the maid starch, which considerably reduces the romance  factor and could indicate he wants her to starch his small clothes just so, but I choose  to go with the more interesting romance plot.???????????????????????????????Then we have some more conventional moments of romance to share….

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I love the elderly couple depicted below – romance doesn’t pay attention to age!
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And here’s a beautiful pigeon in the center, below, who’s clearly delivering a love letter, don’t you think? Happy Valentine’s Day!
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