Continuing with my Christmas-themed guest blogs from fellow Astraea Press authors, I'm delighted to welcome Patricia Kiyono to the blog today to talk about her Christmas Regency story, The Partridge and the Peartree :)
Though I've always loved to write, I didn't really start writing with a goal of being published until fairly recently. After Astraea Press accepted my story in June of 2011, I started writing in earnest. I'd been working on various manuscripts for about ten years but never completed any. So when the publication of the Legacy gave me the validation as an author, I went back to finish several others and got them on the docket. But I worried that I might soon run out of story ideas.
That notion was challenged when Astraea Press came out with a Christmas call for stories set in Regency period, specifically 1812. The story had to include a duke, as well as a reference to the Christmas Eve Ball at Holly Hall given by Lord and Lady Kringle. The requirements were simple enough. I started brainstorming plot ideas with my critique partners and my family. And then I started to write.
But even though I'd read many romances set during this time period, I was soon caught in a snag. Being an American, the concept of nobility, though definitely fascinating, is quite foreign. Here, no one is born into a title. It was a steep learning curve for me, learning about how one person addresses another depending on the speaker's position as well as the listener's.
It seemed like every other sentence I would have to stop and wonder, "How would this person talk to that person?" I found several websites that helped. But I got discouraged and nearly didn't finish the story. Thanks to some urging and last-minute help from my critique partner, I submitted The Partridge and the Peartree and to my utter surprise it's been far more successful than I ever dreamed it would be!
There is one thing I would do differently. Though I had three people proofread the manuscript before it was submitted, and two different editors approved the story, reviewers' comments show that I should have consulted a Regency expert. There are events in my storyline that would not have happened during this period, and someone well versed in this era would have caught them. Thankfully, most of the reviewers were kind enough to say that despite the inaccuracies, they liked my characters. If I ever venture into this genre again, I would definitely consult one of those people — maybe one of the reviewers!
Phillip Peartree, Duke of Bartlett, dreamed of a peaceful life with a suitable mate until a hunting accident left him scarred and nearly deaf. Resigned to spending the rest of his days alone, Phillip has devoted himself to rebuilding his family estate. But, a chance encounter with a lovely young woman in a dusty bookstore rekindles his almost-forgotten hopes and dreams.
Lady Amelia Partridge has no time for the frivolity of the London social scene. She is much too busy. In addition to her work with the Ladies Literary Society, she has a mission – educating poor children in the city. She also has a secret life, one she fears might drive away the young duke who has become increasingly important to her.
The Partridge and the Peartree is available at Astraea Press, Amazon, AmazonUK, Barnes and Noble, and Smashwords.
Patricia Kiyono can be found on facebook, her blog, and twitter (@PatriciaKiyono).
Thanks for being a guest on my blog, Patricia - The Partridge and the Peartree sounds an intriguing read and I love the way you have worked in the names/title! It has a great cover too :)