To coincide with the release of her fifth novel in the Stolen Brides Series, The Highlander’s Triumph, and her first release of a contemporary romance novel, The Rebound Pack, Eliza Knight was kind enough to take some time out of her busy schedule to answer several of our questions.
Thank you, to Eliza!
Eliza Knight is the award-winning, multi-published, Amazon best-selling author of sizzling historical romance and time travel erotic romance. She runs the award-winning blog, History Undressed. When not reading, writing and researching, she likes to cuddle up in front of a warm fire with her own knight in shining armor. (via Amazon.com)
As a fan of classical romance novels, i.e. Jane Eyre and Pride & Prejudice, are there any aspects of these favorites you try to incorporate into your stories? What have you learned / taken away from them, that has helped in your own writing?
I think the fact that the heroines were strong and independent is something that stuck with me. Besides being beholden to society edicts, they tried to forge ahead and make their own paths. I loved that. I learned from reading classics that characters a reader can fall in love with, characters we want to be, are essential, and I’ve tried to carry that over into my own writing.
As demonstrated by the many Workshops you host, you are clearly dedicated to writing historical fiction, and helping others write in the genre. What advice do you have for authors who are looking to write historical fiction?
I have always tried to pay it forward. Helping other writers succeed is such a joy of mine, plus as a reader, I want there to be more books to read! The best advice I can give, besides writing at least five days a week, is to be true to your era. Do the research, immerse yourself in that time period. If you bluff your way through, the readers will know it. They won’t “feel” like they are there.
You have spent a lot of time exploring historical sites, which have been your favorites and how have they inspired your novels?
My favorite sites are always castles. I love walking through them and imagining what happened, good, bad, ugly, all of it. Imagining myself back in the time period I’m writing, being physically there, and taking those memories with me has helped the stories to come alive. The more detail I have the better I write. If I can’t actually go to a place, I will extensively research it so I feel as though I’m there.
We have always thought that it would be difficult to write the steamy love scenes in romance novels. What was it like to write your first love scene? How did you plow through it?
It really is plowing! They are still sometimes hard to write, because it can’t just be a universal love scene, it has to be those characters, their mannerisms, likes, dislikes. It has to mean something, to change them, to help them grow. I like to play music, make sure its quiet wherever I am, and think about how they would start. What they would do. I close my eyes and imagine them. Hear them, see them. And then the words flow. The first time I wrote a love scene, I’m pretty sure it was a lot of purple prose and insert tab A into slot B. I think I’ve gotten better over the years 🙂
Your Stolen Bride Series deals with repressed heroines who go against society’s norms, fall in love and marry men who were not chosen for them, something scandalous for the time period. Why do you think this narrative hold such great appeal to your readers? Is it difficult creating these strong female characters? Which bride do you admire the most?
Oh, great questions! I think it holds appeal to readers, because readers want heroines who can rise above the situations they’ve been dealt–and get their happy ending too. They are strong, independent, and willing to fight for what they want, what is right. They are women I want to be, or at least be friends with, and I hope my readers feel the same way. It isn’t always difficult creating them, it is difficult to reign them in! My heroines want to hit the ground running, and I do have to pull them back a little, remind them that if they go all out, the reward in the end won’t be as sweet. Hmm… this is a tough one! I admire them all! I will always have a soft spot for Arbella in my heart, because she is my first, but if you were to make me choose one, it would be Mariana from THE HIGHLANDER’S TRIUMPH, because she has had to endure so much more than anyone else, and still she’s strong, sane and gets her man.
You have created many delicious leading men, which one is your favorite, and what are some key traits you believe they should possess?
Thank you 🙂 Another toughie! Magnus is my all time fav–he is such an alpha, but so incredibly sexy, loyal, loving. I think a hero should fight for what is right, be loyal, powerful, intelligent, protective, possess a sense of humor, love his woman with a passion and make love to her like there is no tomorrow. (Magnus is Kitty’s favorite as well!)
In your novel Behind the Plaid, Emma gets sucked back into 16th Century Scotland; if this happened to you what is one modern convenience you’d miss the most?
Oh! I don’t know… Its a toss up between toilets and the internet… I love the internet… I think I could deal with using a chamber pot or garderobe, but if I couldn’t communicate with the world, I might go crazy.
What are some of your favorite historical novels, that you would recommend to our readers?
I am a huge fan of all Julie Garwood’s, Jude Devereux’s, Ken Follett’s and of course the classics.
What novel would we be surprised to find on your kindle?
Maybe Sylvia Day’s Crossfire books… I am a sucker for a hot, domineering hero. (so are we!)
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