Friday, May 29, 2015

ANNE STENHOUSE: Heart's Desire

Today we welcome Anne Stenhouse

I’m really pleased to be offered the chance to post on our RNA blog, but I won’t pretend it’s easy because I’m very conscious of all the distinguished folk who’ve gone before and the thousands of words of wisdom they’ve written.

When I was puzzling what I could bring to this, I had in mind the difficulties I experienced when writing Daisy’s Dilemma, my new book from MuseItUp, as an unplanned follow-on. That was fairly miserable, but I can’t think anyone wants to read about incompetence. You’re here to find out what works.

What works for me is drama as I used to write plays. I like to hear the words. I like to craft a scene. I once went on courses…Screenwriting courses are keen to impress that in a good story the central character may be pursuing something they want desperately, but the resolution will be them arriving at something they need desperately. And so it often is in life.
I remember desperately wanting my mum to buy a packet of Cornish wafers when we were shopping one Sunday morning. She rightly sussed that what I wanted was the elaborate concoction pictured on the side, but pride made me deny it. Then I had to eat my way through a packet of Cornish wafers which did not have slices of cheese and olives neatly piled thereon. Of course what I really needed was something different. I was curious about the foods that were increasingly arriving in the newly established supermarkets. My poor mother must have been so caught between the different demands of the generations as my dad had very conservative taste.

Daisy’s Dilemma, e-pub 16th June, is my third book from MuseItUp and has the want/need conundrum at its centre. Mr John Brent is Lady Daisy’s heart’s desire. She has plotted, manoeuvred and fought for the right to marry this man. She wants him so much, she can’t think sensibly. She wants him so much she’s made everyone else’s life miserable and they are very happy to oblige her. Is betrothal to Mr Brent as good as she imagined? Will the heroine have to lie in the bed she’s made?

Real life in earlier times meant that young people thought long and hard before defying their ‘friends’ when it came to choosing a partner. Hence the wonderful romantic and dramatic possibilities for the novelist of a desperate ride to the Scottish border when that became the only way to secure one’s heart’s desire. Of course, the repercussions inflicted by irate parents when such a ride was successful or the emotional mayhem when the scales fall from the heroine’s eyes are both rich sources for the author. Pity this poor author, then, when Lady Daisy’s dramatic needs are frustrated by success. What next? What is truly her heart’s desire and was this author be able to understand what her needs were so she in turn might, too?                                                                        

About Anne
Multi-published historical romance author, Anne Stenhouse, lives and writes in Edinburgh, Scotland. She shares her house with her husband and dancing partner of over thirty years and enjoys having children and a grandson in fairly close proximity. When not plotting Regency style mayhem, Anne enjoys Scottish country dancing, theatre and the company of good friends. She plays badminton poorly and reads a lot of books. Anne has recently joined the RNA committee and expects to read even more books as a result.

Thank you for joining us, Anne, and good luck with Daisy’s Dilemma


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Anonymous said...

Loved your post, Anne. I'm intrigued to find out what happens to Daisy. She's created a dilemma for herself that could occur in the present day equally well. Good luck with your release!

anne stenhouse said...

Hi Helena, well, yes, she has. Not long to wait. Anne

Kate Blackadder said...

I'm not sure that I even heard of olives before I was grown up but my children loved them from a young age. The generation gap!

anne stenhouse said...

Hi Kate, I'm not sure I knew what they were then, but I knew I wanted them. My mum's kicking over the traces food was capers. I still love capers. anne

Gilli Allan said...

Olives and capers were far too sophisticated for me when I was 9. To depart from the food theme, there was one thing I always wanted and I couldn't understand why this item was never asked for when characters in fairy stories were offered three wishes. A magic wand.

anne stenhouse said...

Gilli, that made me laugh. I don't know why, but I didn't ever think of having my own. so much missed opportunity, Anne

Rosemary Gemmell said...

Enjoyed your post, Anne, and looking forward to reading Daisy's Dilemma.

anne stenhouse said...

Hi Rosemary, thank you. I hope you will enjoy the book. I feel it's been a long time in gestation. Anne

Jill Barry said...

It's lovely to learn about your life, Anne. I very much enjoyed visiting Edinburgh a while back when I attended sessions at the Traverse Theatre - Kirsty Gunn was one of the speakers and everyone made me feel very welcome. It's fascinating to see what other authors are writing and what inspires them so thank you for an interesting post. Good luck with your writing. Sandra x

anne stenhouse said...

Hi Sandra, thanks for dropping in. I've done workshops at the Traverse, too. It's a wonderfully supportive organisation for writers. Anne