Sunday, December 18, 2016

"Saving Sophia" and What Inspires Romantic Suspense? by Suz deMello (#Romance #RomanticSuspense @NaughtyLiterati)
My latest is Saving Sophia, which is part of A Fortune to Win, a miniseries I'm writing. The story appears in the Naughty Literati's winter 2016 collection, Naughty Flames.

What the story's about:

“It doesn’t matter” is cynical Sophie Fortune’s motto. Then her best friend is killed and Sophie herself is attacked. Can Detective Inspector Nick Wendell keep her safe and heal her heart?

Sound fun? It is. In fact, romantic suspense may be the greatest genre ever. Why?

No other genre supplies as many thrills and chills, ups and downs. Romance is great, but romantic suspense adds an edge of danger to the flame of love.

But how does this come about? How does an RS writer ply her craft? Where do they get their ideas?

I hear this question often and usually answer flippantly, “From Sears. They sell them by the dozen in the basement, between the bikes and the barbecues.”

Tower Bridge, Nov 2016
More realistically, ideas can pop in from anywhere. I travel a lot, and the cool places I’ve been often inspire my books. Aspects of Saving Sophia were inspired by London, my favorite city. A couple of scenes take place in a charity shop on Marylebone High Street, but the shop was patterned after one that my Auntie Roberta used to work at in St. Johns Wood. Sophie lives in Hampstead, an area where other family members of mine have lived. And the hospital where she was treated after she was attacked looks very much like the Wellington, in London's West End--where, unfortunately, one of my uncles was treated ten years ago.
The romance part of RS is often inspired by people we meet or experiences we have. The heroine in Gypsy Witch is a composite of the many Wicca practitioners I've met (I do live in California, you know). And her cop lover is an amalgam of the officers I've known--i used to be a trial attorney, so I met a number of policemen.

The suspense part—well, that’s something else. I tend to
 write RS from the victim’s point of view. I ask myself, “How would it feel if I was being stalked? What would I do? What would happen?” The answer is in Fashion Victim, in which my heroine, a couturier, is harassed by very determined tormentors.

Romantic suspense touches our hearts, grips our gut and takes us on thrill rides unlike anything else.