Tag Archives: historical

Faye Hall – Erotic Romance Author

Today I have a guest post from erotic romance author Faye Hall


As authors we all come across challenges when writing our scripts. When you are an author of Historical erotic romances these challenges are no mean feat to overcome.

Historical romances of any genre always presents the task of not only writing a kick arse love story, but also ensuring the numerous historical facts included in the story can withstand the scrutiny of any history buff that turns the pages of your book.

Mistress of Purity, my third release with Red Sage Publishing coming out in August, presented many issues with regards to historical facts for me. Not only was there the historical accuracy regarding the town of Sarina in which the book is set that I had to get right, but also raping every history web page trying to find names of tavern’s (many of which were burnt down and lost in the history pages), and also the types of carriages used in Australia during the late 1800’s.

Passions in the Dust, my fourth release due out in October, was an even bigger hurdle as the story begins back in Plymouth, England before it travels to Bowen, Australia. So I had to try and track down shipping records from the late 1800’s to see if I could find a passenger ship travelling between the two countries at the particular year I wanted to set the story. I was lucky though and with many hours of searching the web and a huge dose of luck, I actually managed to find not only a ship’s name, but also the name of the captain.

Now given that my stories are primarily erotic romances, the accuracy of historical facts may not seem important but because of the country I have chosen to set my stories in I need these accuracies. Australian romances are becoming more and more popular as the years pass but, to many, Australia is still an unimaginable wilderness with a very blank and unknown history other than convicts from the first fleet.

This unfamiliar setting means that as a writer you have to work twice as hard to plant the scenery of the country in the readers mind. You have to describe so much of the townships, and make it as accurate as possible so that it is believable enough for the reader to become engrossed in what they are reading. I also then like adding the extra drama of further scandal, mystery and murder to help move the story along. The challenge here is to try and get inside the mind of the Victorian person, and know what they considered as scandal along with what weapons were available to cause whatever harm was needed.

So why do I torture myself by writing historical erotic romances?

It’s simple really. With each book I write I get transported back in time to a place few were ever told about, and fewer still will ever read about. I hope too that my readers will experience a journey unlike any other each time they read one of my books, and get to sample a piece of Australian history as they delve into the lives of my characters.

The history of Australia is a beautiful and adventurous one, filled with hardships and passions unlike any other.

Mistress of Purity and Passions in the Dust will show you townships of Australia few know to exist, and you will fall in love with the characters from each book as they take you on a passionate journey through their hardships in their still new and most unexplored country.

FIND OUT MORE ABOUT FAYE HALL

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High Sea

Free book time. For a limited time only you can download High Sea by Catherine E Chapman for free from Smashwords.

Samantha, a seamstress, stows away on a ship bound for Australia, disguised as a boy. Discovered by the ship’s doctor, John Seacombe, she becomes his assistant. However, she rapidly finds that her growing feelings for Doctor John mean that her disguise is a hindrance, rather than a help. And when the feisty Estelle McEwan enters the scene, things become even more complicated for Sam.

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Anne

I’ve been speaking to author Carmen Stevens who has been telling me about her historical drama Anne.

Anne is set in 18th Century London, one of my favourite periods in history, can you tell us about this time and in particular about the setting for the book?
 I really like this period in English history as well. I myself love England, although I haven’t been there yet. I’m especially fascinated with its history. I’ve also researched England and its history thoroughly, especially for the background of my novel. And from what my research has revealed to me, I believe that 18th century England was either a great time or a bad time depending on one’s social class. If you were first or second class, I imagine that life was pretty good and others treated you with favor and respect. However, if you were third class, I imagine that life was pretty difficult. I have reason to believe that many poor people were homeless or almost homeless during this time, begged for food from those who were better off, and resided in the dirty slums of big cities like London. And this setting is exactly where my titular character, Anne, finds herself in the beginning of the story. By the time she’s twelve years of age, Anne is homeless and alone on the dark side of London, in the slums. Her mother had died giving birth to her, and because of this loss, her father became insane, hated Anne, and treated her violently. When Anne is twelve years old, her father, an alcoholic, kills himself by burning down their home, and Anne is immediately homeless, poor, and alone.
Anne is the star of your novel, she seems a wilful young woman, can you tell us more about her?
 As stated in the previous question, Anne doesn’t have a very good start in life. She knows this, but instead of letting the fact that she’s poor, homeless, and alone get the better of her and make her depressed, she gathers strength from her sufferings and a strong hope for a better life is rooted within her. However, this isn’t to say that Anne is a cheerful, happy person. She gathers strength from her hard life, but that strength is represented in a highly selfish, egotistical manner. Anne’s sufferings have toughened her, but she cares little for anything or anyone besides herself. The opening pages of my novel help to illustrate this further:

Fourteen-year old Anne Falkman had beheld this all through eyes that esteemed the dire need to be firm and strong, haughty and traitorous. She had always espied the world with beautiful eyes that betrayed their attractiveness but clung fast to life itself and the hope for joy that such a thing as fate could someday bring her.

Anne knew this hope by it growing within her like a tree, and the longer that she forgot about it, when she felt it prick her heart again it had grown taller. She had acquired the seed of this hope through the only years of her life that she had ever known, the most unbearable, heart-wrenching years that no one so young should ever have the curse to possess. They were years that had tested her natural endurance and inner strength, but with poor end results. The compassion and kindness born into her had come to terminate long ago as such characteristics had lost their true shine as the conditions of her tragic life had gripped a sick hold onto them. Never was the girl smiling kind thoughts and words to the passersby on the streets and contemplating compassion for the weeping, but why should she? No one had ever really smiled and sent kind, sympathetic thoughts and words her way through the crude journey that fate had propelled her into. No one had ever really stopped to direct their attention to the neglect that was hers every day of her life. Thus, Anne possessed the knowledge that there was no one in the world who she could trust. She had contracted a vulnerable heart that was, in addition to all of the other negative traits that her personality had taken, sensitive not to offensive words and actions but rather to the uncommon airs of ego and vanity. Daily she paid ignorance and rejection toward many and indifference toward all. She had learned to live in no other way than this, and to only keep watch on herself and the sacred will to live for a life that was to bring her happiness and reason.

As a historical character what can modern women take from a woman like Anne?
 Well like I said, Anne is a tough cookie. Even though she’s egocentric and potentially cruel, even, she’s strong, willful, and doesn’t lose sight of her dreams. I think that modern women can really admire these traits in Anne, and learn not to lose sight of their dreams as well.
Is this a story influenced by the classics and if so what books could you liken Anne to?
 I was greatly influenced by Charles Dickens while planning out and writing this book. I’d read a couple of his novels before even thinking of writing a book. These two novels were “Great Expectations” and “Oliver Twist”. In the former book, the protagonist Pip has a humble life and dreams of becoming a gentleman. He also falls in love with the cruel woman Estella, and I definitely believe that Anne was formed from the character Estella’s negative influence. As for “Oliver Twist”, Oliver goes through many hardships himself before attaining a better life. I think I definitely took something from this book as well in forming my novel.
Aside from Anne herself, who are the other dominant characters in the book and what are they to Anne?
 My novel has a great many characters in the forty-some years that it covers. There’s George, a young man who befriends Anne when they’re children and develops feelings for her, but Anne, though she superficially cares for him, is cruel to him and pushes him away. Rad is another young man who falls for Anne, but Anne, though she reciprocates his feelings at least a little bit, cares more for herself and turns her back on him. Madame Button is a malicious French woman who hates Anne for a reason that’s not revealed to readers until a bit later, and tries to ruin her life. Anne fears her greatly. Guinevere is another young woman who comes across Anne and forms a strong friendship with her; Anne loves her just as much. Anne also bears three children: Henry, who is Anne’s foil, a very strong person who also endures much, Lucifer, a very shy, troubled boy with inner demons, and Grace, a spunky, passionate girl who loves Anne dearly and longs to protect her from a certain person. Anne loves both of her boys, but Grace she is afraid of because of a certain incident that happened before Grace was born. These characters are just a few of the many more that my novel contains.
Is there a particular scene you could share with us?
 Sure. In the following extract, Anne is recalling a time in which Madame Button told her all about her parents from the time they decided to elope together to the moment Anne’s mother dies from childbirth:

Anne’s father had been named William Falkman. He had been a common man of low station when he had fallen in love with an Elizabeth McFarkley, a beautiful, loving young woman of first-class society. She had likewise fallen for William, but was constantly harped upon by her egotist, persistent parents, who always insisted that a daughter like theirs was not about to be united with such a “common boy”. William and Elizabeth, however, loved each other too much to know any kind of negativity, and when the verbal harassing of Elizabeth about her love affairs came to a sufficient point, the two lovers finally decided to escape from such pressure, and elope. Elizabeth especially had treasured such an idea, as the love that she had had for William was far greater than was the love that she had possessed for her parents and their constant injustices.

Eloping was a bad decision. The sweet and naive Elizabeth never imagined that her own family would break ties with her because of her personal wants and dreams, but that was exactly what had happened. Elizabeth McFarkley, the gorgeous daughter of a wealthy politician, had made the choice to marry a man of much inferiority, and the consequence was the cessation of any further communication between her family and herself. When the surrounding areas became informed of such a consequence, they were heartily surprised to learn of how indifferent Elizabeth continued to act, in spite of such shame. This was because she finally had what she had always ached and prayed for-the perfect man to be her husband, and there was absolutely nothing in the world that could bring her down. Others did not know this, though, and they talked about Elizabeth secretly amongst themselves, calling her a “thankless, shameful braggart”.

No matter the cold, vulgar thoughts and feelings of these members of society that Elizabeth had grown up with, she and William, after marrying, decided to purchase a large, luxurious house near London. The home was bought with the sale of a number of quaint items that Elizabeth had run away with. As inconvenient as it had been for Elizabeth to run off with such special belongings, she had loved them too much to leave them behind, and furthermore, her intelligence had prompted her to bring them along directly after she had made the decision to elope with William. She had had a certain instinct that had told her that the money produced from the selling of those objects would prove to add up to a sufficient amount of money. As companionable as this house had been for the star-crossed lovers back then, it was the same house that Anne violently abhorred with a fierce retribution that coursed wildly throughout her being, as it had been the nightmare of hell for her, hell produced by the purest paternal abuse of every kind.

According to Madame Button, Anne’s parents had had a flawless first year of marriage, but Anne had already guessed that. She was well aware of the ugly life that she lived and wondered how a person like she, with a pain-filled life, could otherwise have come into the world but with sufficient pain on the part of her parents.

Indeed, the story thus continued. William had not been able to find a doctor in the time before Elizabeth had gone into labor with Anne, even as he had run through the whole of London on the foaming back of a horse. His youthful heart had been filled with terror for his poor wife, who had been screaming and crying in utter anguish for hours from her labor pains. He feared that Elizabeth was too frail to give birth to a child, and those fears were only to be confirmed a couple of hours after William had returned from his harried journey with no success whatsoever.

When midnight struck on that chilly night of April 4, 1754 Elizabeth did, with tears and trembles harassing her delicate body, give birth to Anne. The child, if anything, had appeared to be even healthier than her mother. William had performed the whole delivery of the infant on his own, vacant of the availability of a doctor, or even a midwife. He had certainly performed his best, considering how difficult it had been for him to ignore his wife’s continuum of heart-breaking screams and sobs. They had shattered parts of his heart and perhaps his composition as well, had he not forced himself to concentrate on every particular event that was folding out before his eyes.

When William had returned to Elizabeth after cleansing the baby, he happily announced what gender it was. When she heard that she had given birth to a daughter, Elizabeth smiled laboriously, and then, extending a shaking hand to rest it lightly upon her girl’s head, she turned with tear-filled eyes to her husband, stretching another difficult smile upon her destroyed face. She then began to speak, so quietly at first that William could scarcely hear her.

“W…William, name her…Anne. Anne…Elizabeth. A lovely name…do not mourn for me, darling…Love…Anne. She will be all that you have now. I…I love…you…”

Her last words said, Elizabeth fell instantly against the pillows, throwing a wild look all around her, as if she knew that William would break after she was gone. Plump tears once again began to fall before she slowly sank down into the bed in death. With his great love gone, William screamed a terrible yell of complete agony.

What is your favourite part of the story?
 My favorite part regards the very last scene of the novel, which is quite powerful, I think. It’s also thought-provoking. I won’t say anything else about it because I don’t want to spoil anything, but I recommend people to read this novel and find out what exactly this scene is about.
And finally what is next for Carmen Stevens?
 Right now I’m simply focusing on promoting my novel, though I may write another book in the future. But I try to set aside at least a few hours a week for promoting. I work hard every week and I hope for the best.
You can download Anne from Amazon now.

Scott Skipper

I’ve got an exciting post today. This is a totally exclusive character interview from Scott Skipper’s Face of the Angel, enjoy!

 

In 1984 independent German journalist, Ingrid Dorffmann, contacted fugitive Nazi, Josef Mengele, through his son, Rolf. Through a convoluted series of messages, Mengele agreed to be interviewed. Andreas, the son of Mengele’s friend Wolfram Bossert, led Frau Dorffmann to the clandestine meeting place in a São Paulo café of Mengele’s choosing.

The interview began over coffee:

Dorffmann: Thank you for meeting me. I know that it takes courage for you to do this.

Mengele: Not at all, to spend a few moments with someone so charming as you brings a little joy to an old man.

Dorffmann: Thank you. So, why do they call you the Angel of Death?

Mengele: That is a lie perpetrated by the malignant Jews. At the camp I was called the “Angel of Auschwitz” because I tried to help people.

Dorffmann: How could you stand on the platform and decide who lived and who died?

Mengele: Liebchen, I was sent to Auschwitz to do a job. I was simply instructed to select those who were physically capable of working. You want to know about the gassing. That was not my decision. It was going on long before I got there, and in fact, it ended before I left.

Dorffmann: Is it true you removed the eyes from living people trying to learn how to change eye color?

Mengele: It was impractical to retrieve the bodies from the gas chambers and I had my orders. I thought it was a silly waste of time, but the Führer had brown eyes and wanted them to be blue.

Dorffmann: Could you not have anesthetized them?

Mengele: Ach! There was no anesthetic.

Dorffmann: Then you could have shot them.

Mengele: Do you take me for a monster?

Dorffmann pauses, slightly stunned.

Dorffmann: Then what about the other experiments on live subjects?

Mengele: Experiments? That was scientific research for the betterment of the German race. I did not invent Auschwitz. It was created to support the war effort by exploiting an inferior race. My research was only a small part of that effort.

Dorffmann: But attempting to force twin births your idea, wasn’t it?

Mengele: Yes, it was my idea, and I later succeeded, but only with cattle. The twins owed me their lives. I saw to it that they were treated well.

Dorffmann: But what became of the twins?

Mengele: I did all I could to save them. It was the Russians who caused their deaths. All I could do was flee to the west fully expecting to run into the arms of the amis.

Dorffmann: Did you ever meet Hitler?

Mengele: Yes, but only to salute and shake hands. He once toured my family’s factory in Bavaria, but I was away at university at the time.

Dorffmann: What did you think of him?

Mengele draws a deep breath and looks at the ceiling.

Mengele: He was the man of the century—another Alexander or Fredrick the Great—but he was poorly educated and he surrounded himself with weak men who filled him with bad advice. In the end, he simply could not win the war by himself.

Dorffmann: Let’s get back to your assertion that the German race is superior. What evidence do you have that one race is superior to another?

Mengele: It is obvious. There is scientific proof. It can be proven by studying the prehistoric migration routes of the Aryan race as compared to those of the mongrel races. It can be further proven by genetic studies. We are superior mentally, physically, morally and genetically.

Dorffmann: You have been living in Brazil for many years, how do you rate the Brazilians?

Mengele: They are subhuman.

Dorffmann: Do you not think there are any intelligent Brazilians?

Mengele: Ach, some are brighter than others, but it is like teaching a monkey to do clever tricks. The monkey can learn to do amusing things but it cannot understand its own motivation. It is driven not by lofty thoughts, only greed for the treat it will receive.

Dorffmann: How do you account for all the scientific breakthroughs made by non-Aryans?

Mengele: Plundered German science.

Dorffmann looks exasperated.

Dorffmann: One last question, how have you managed to avoid capture for the last forty years when every Nazi hunter on earth is looking for you?

Mengele: Most of them are Jews of course, and so not very enlightened. When they grabbed Eichmann in Buenos Aires I was very nervous naturally, but I had many good and generous friends who understood the wrongness of the Jew led witch-hunt. I suppose by now there must be fifty people who know who I am and where I am and are willing to help me. I only wish they would send more money.

Ingrid Dorffman’s interview was never published and Mengele was never captured.

Read the whole remarkable story.

Face of the Angel

See all of Scott Skipper’s work at:

http://www.scottskipper.com/


Cobbled Life

I’ve been speaking with HM Flath and he’s been telling me all about his novel set in Russia. Here’s what he has to say.

1. Cobbled Life is a story about a conscripted soldier in 1908 Russia. How much of this story is fictional and have you used any events from this time, or interpreted other historical accounts that you can tell us about?

Real:

* The Tsar’s desire to modernize and build up the Russian army in 1908 is real as he did not want to be embarrassed in battle.

* The battles on the Eastern front between 1914 and 1915 along the Gorlice-Tarnow line are real.

* The Russian Revolution of 1917 is real.

* The existence of Pokovnik Constantine Vasiletvich Zaharoh is real.

* The description of the immigrant ship and train are real.

* The Flath family settlement in Saskatchewan is real.

* Many of Otto’s personal experiences while in Russia and then also in Canada are real.

* The dates are all real.

Fictional

– The conversations are fictional.

* Some of the characters are fictional, ie. the Pokovnik’s family.

* Clara’s family, the Jungs, and their background contains much conjecture on my part as I had only snippets of information.

Events that are utilized:

-World War I – Eastern front battles

-The Russian Revolution of 1917

* The existence of the Spanish flu epidemic and its consequences

* The Great Depression of the 1930’s

2. Obviously 1908 Russia was a very tumultuous time, what does your leading character Otto, face as he travels on his perilous journey?

Upon entering Russia, Otto was confronted with prejudices of language, ethnicity, cultural and social status which were underlying themes through the whole book. The dramatic tumultuous time for Otto began in 1914 with the outbreak of WWI. He faced danger, the horrors of war and the possibility of physical harm and/or death, loyalty in the face of danger, escape from Russia during the Russian Revolution, the tragic death of his mother and then the difficulties of life as an immigrant during the Great Depression.

3. What type of man is Otto and how does he develop throughout the story?

Otto begins as an immature, inexperienced, nineteen year old who has had a fairly easy life until the time he was conscripted and where the story begins. His character grew much stronger as he lived and learned from personal experiences, from living with the Pokovnik’s family, from

being on the front during WWI, escaping from Russia, immigrating, etc. He grows into becoming a loyal devoted family man – strong and committed.

4. Are there any other significant characters in Cobbled Life you can tell us about?

* Martin is Otto’s father and the man responsible for the first Flaths to emigrate to Canada.

* Constantine Vasilevich Zaharoh, Pokovnik of a cavalry regiment in Russia’s third army, was Otto’s boss and mentor (father figure) for 9 years. Otto went to the battle lines on the Eastern front as the valet to Pokovnik Zaharoh.

* Anya Oleshenko was Otto’s secret love who played a major role in several of Otto’s decisions.

* Clara Jung became Otto’s wife. She provided strength and loyalty to their marriage and family and eventually became the mother to their nine children.

* Gustav Jung, Clara’s father, was a strong, ambitious, solid patriarch of the Jung family whose choices lead to the emigration of that family.

5. What is your favorite part of the story? (You can use a snippet of it if you like.)

There are several. One of my favorite scenes is in Chapter 6 when Otto takes the Pokovnik’s daughter to watch the ice break-up in the spring.

She fell backwards onto the bridge deck and lay there. Otto only had heard a small cry for help and quickly turned his attention to Natalie who was lying on the ground. Instantly, Otto fell to his knees and peered into Natalie’s face. He then sensed another presence. His eyes gazed up and not a foot away, he found his eyes locked to another set of the most beautiful soft blue eyes he had ever seen.

Another of my favorite scenes is found in Chapter 11 when the Pokovnik spoke to Otto prior to their departure for the battle fields.

This is total madness. What is there to gain? A few pieces of land? For whom? We are going to kill each other and for what reason? Because someone else speaks a different language? Because others worship God in a different way than we do? Because others wear their clothing differently? Because others have skin and hair colors that are different from ours? It makes no sense to me, Otto. All that every one of us just wants, is to be happy…… to have a family ……. to be safe ……. to live without fear. Look at yourself and the other two million men in our army …… what do they want? Do they want to lose their lives just because the Tsar wants to prevent Franz-Joseph of Austria from ruling this pathetic piece of ground? Of course not! This is sheer madness. It makes me sick. I have been in battles and I know what is coming.”

6. Who is your target audience – who will love this book and who should read it?

My target audience is anyone and everyone who has emigrated or has family which has emigrated, experienced war, poverty, prejudice and/or bigotry. I especially hope that young people who often don’t appreciate their heritage would read and reflect upon the many messages interwoven in the fabric of the story.

7. What do you want readers to come away with once they have finished Cobbled Life?

I want the reader to leave with an appreciation of their own situation, an appreciation of the Canadian way of life and a debt of gratitude to their forbearers and to those who made Canada, as a nation, possible.

8. What is next for you HM Flath?

I am presently working on a second manuscript. All that I would like to say is that it too, is historical fiction.

 

Download this book now from Amazon