How many of you have read a Steampunk Romance? Am I the only Steampunk virgin out there?
The answer may be yes. It’s not for the lack of trying (every girl’s excuse). I actually have several coming up on my TBR, which makes me even more excited to introduce our next Author Open MIC guest: Lara Nance. Lara is an amazingly talented lady. She has an array of books that range from Steampunk to paranormal romance and paranormal mystery. Her novel, Memories of Murder, won NEC’s Bean Pot Award for Best Paranormal romance in 2012, received a 4.5 star review from Romantic Times, and was awarded Merit for Best Book From a Virginia Writer in 2012 from the Holt Medallion Contest of VRW. Her love of Steampunk has grown into several novels, specifically Airship Adventure Chronicles- Revenge of the Mad Scientist, which we are going to talk about today. So, let me introduce Lara….
Lara Nance grew up and lived in many cities throughout the South. She loves to write in a variety of genres within the scope of women’s fiction. But the basis of all her stories is a tale that will entertain and intrigue.
If you want to escape and lose yourself in a novel, you’ve come to the right place. Choose your genre and settle in to be entertained. From thrilling mysteries and steampunk tales, to paranormal romance and adventure, Lara’s willing to explore a variety of compelling stories full of danger and suspense, with a touch of romance.
Having been on the fencing team in college and now living on a sailboat convinces her that she was a pirate in another life, or possibly kin to Errol Flynn… However, due to the unfortunate demise of the romantic pirates of the past, she lives out her fantasies, thrills and adventures in her stories.
Currently docked in Norfolk, Virginia (until the wind changes) Lara enjoys living on her sailboat and spends time reading, of course writing, indulging a variety of artistic endeavors, cooking and sailing with her husband, Joe and their Yorkie, Rio.
You have an amazing collection of books – paranormal romance, paranormal mystery and now Steampunk adventures. What motivated you to break from your paranormal roots to write Steampunk?
There’s still an element of fantasy to both genres. Plus the Victorian backdrop lends an element of romance I love. I also love the inventiveness of the steampunk movement, the great costumes and wild weapons. I’ve been a Jules Verne fan since I was little, so steampunk is a wonderful extension of that.
What do you find most fascinating about the Steampunk genre?
The creativity of this community is amazing. There are so many directions one can take. Either using an altered Victorian history to incorporate the steampunk elements, or as I did, create an alternate Victorian Universe with new countries, but still keeping the Victorian theme.
For those of us who have never read a Steampunk based novel, tell us what we can expect to see?
For me, I see the novels taking a couple paths, one is more technical and focuses on the gadgets and science fiction. The other, is more romantic and uses the steampunk elements within an adventure or mystery. The latter is what I chose for my novels. It’s a rollicking adventure with rogue heroes and spunky heroines. You’ll see visions of the steampunk clothing, airships, clockwork robots and air-pirates.
Does your Steampunk Airship Adventure Chronicles have elements of romance? Or another theme buried within plot lines that you wish readers to capture?
Apart from the main theme of adventure there is an underlying romance that builds over the course of the three books. Arabella was left at the altar by a man eight years before this novel takes place. She’s forced to accept his help in this adventure as his airship is the only one for hire when she needs to go after her kidnapped father. Against the backdrop of their dangerous mission, she and Rett learn their attraction is still alive and now that they’re older, the spark can be rekindled.
Are the books individual reads or are they linked by a common plotline?
The books are all linked and one picks up where the previous one left off. The whole trilogy is a story of How Belle and friends fight to save the world and she and Rett come to terms with their love.
Tell us about your characters.
I envision Belle as Nicole Kidman. She’s tall, with auburn hair and a British accent. Nothing stops her when she’s determined, and she can be a bit stubborn, too. But her compassion wins everyone over and she had very loyal friends and servants.
Rett is totally like Indiana Jones. A competent adventurer with a streak of vulnerability that endears him to us.
Now for some broader questions…. What is the single, most important element in your writing or life as an author?
As far as my writing, my most important element is to create entertaining women’s fiction that will take the reader away and give them a fun reading experience. As an author, I want to continue to grow and perfect my craft so I offer the best books to my readers I possibly can.
What is the most difficult hurdle you have encountered (personal or professional)? What advice would you give other authors who face the same challenges?
Getting my first book published was the biggest hurdle. It took years of learning and honing my craft as well as studying the publishing business. The advice I have is to keep going. There is so much to learn, it can’t happen overnight. Keep writing because every book you write will be better than the last. Eagerly seeking and accepting critiques of your work is the best way to learn.
What do you are you cooking up next? What can readers expect?
I’m just finishing the third book of the steampunk trilogy. Then I’ll be starting on the second book in my DraculaVille series. So, back to paranormal.
Where can readers find you and your books. (links, purchase and social media)
I’m at www.laranance.com and love to get e-mail from readers.
My books are on Amazon, Barnes and Noble and Kobo. This particular book is only available in electronic format on Amazon, but the print copy is available on the other sites.
Open MIC fav five:
- Favorite hero or heroine – Indiana Jones
- Favorite author – Anne McCaffrey
- Favorite music to write by – Lady Gaga
- Favorite inspiration – Stephen King’s – On Writing.
- Most memorable writing moment – When my first book was accepted by a publisher.
When Lady Arabella Trunkett’s father, the High Lord Minister of Urbannia is kidnapped, all clues point to the mysterious country of Gandiss and the world is thrown into political upheaval.
Arabella is convinced the more sinister nation of Carabarras is to blame, urged on by a mad scientist seeking revenge. So, she sets out on a perilous airship journey across a variety of exotic locales to save him, and halt the potential world war.
But airship pirates, secret assassins and slave traders aren’t her only trials. The fickle hand of fate has made the captain of the only airship available for charter, the man who left her at the altar. For eight years she’s wished him dead. Now he’s her only hope.
January 29-30, 2013
A free copy of Revenge of the Mad Scientist and a unique steampunk necklace.
To ENTER Necklace Giveaway: Leave a comment or question for Lara Nance.
Congratulations, Lara. Stay tuned for more giveaways.