Monday, February 20, 2012

Anyone for an Anthology?

My Decadent book, Mid-Winter Magic, is part of the anthology, A Passionate Christmas. I love anthologies; they are the perfect excuse to buy a whole load of books in one go. And I especially like anthologies where the characters are intertwined. I love it when the people from one story pop up in another. 
All the authors of The Passionate Christmas Anthology are part of a fabulous online critique group, Passionate Critters, which gave us the name of the anthology. I’ve been a member for two years now and joining was one of the best writing decisions I’ve ever made.

Anyway, around August time, one of the members came up with the idea of writing a group of Christmas themed stories based in the same place and with intertwining characters.

We all loved the idea. That was followed by a few weeks of frenzied online activity. Passionate Critters has members from all around the world, English, German—I actually live in Spain—but as the majority are American, it seemed natural to base the stories in America. And so the town of Five Oaks was born. Quickly followed by a whole load of characters and places.

At Passionate Critters, we’re all romance writers, though we write across the spectrum of the sub-genres, contemporary, paranormal, suspense… So the anthology contains a mixture of stories. Mid-Winter Magic has a Vampire hero and a witch heroine. But others contain angels, werewolves and even some real “ordinary” people.

I came in quite late to the process. I wanted to tie in with the other stories and there was one secondary character that I had my eye on – Edna Carruthers, crazy old cat lady and town busybody. Obviously, as she stood, she wasn’t going to be too hot as a romantic lead, so what if Edna wasn’t really Edna at all. Instead, she was somebody else entirely, someone in disguise, hiding out in Five Oaks. You get the idea.

So who was she hiding from? Once I’d worked that out, I had my hero and my heroine.

I think we all enjoyed writing our stories, and coordinating our characters and timelines, though it’s also fair to say that there were a few strained moments during the process.

So do you enjoy anthologies, and how closely linked do you like the stories to be? Let me know for a chance to win one of the Passionate Christmas anthology stories of your choice.

Mid-Winter Magic – Blurb
Fifty years ago, vampire Tynan Steele loved Dina and believed she loved him. Instead, she turned out to be an assassin using him to get close to her latest target. Bitter at the betrayal, Ty swore he would make the witch pay.

Dina has loved her time in Five Oaks, living an ‘ordinary’ life—not killing anyone. But the past has finally caught up with her. Fifty years ago, she was scared to let herself love Ty, now she’s willing to take the risk. But Ty isn’t interested in love—he’s after revenge.

Can Dina use the magic of a white Christmas in Five Oaks, to convince Ty that she’s changed and deserves a second chance at love?


Barbara Elsborg said...

I do like anthologies that link characters because it's fun to see how different writers tackle stories with a lot in common. I've read a few historicals that do this, ones with stories by Mary Balogh who I LOVE! But having to think of Christas in August - I bet that was fun!!

Jennifer Probst said...

Anthologies are so much fun to discover more authors and really dive in. Great post!

Beth said...

I loved your story in this anthology, Nina!