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Thursday, June 10, 2010

Guestblog: Carrie Lofty - Carina Press

eBook; 263 pages
Publisher: Carina Press, June 7, 2010
ISBN-10: 1426890024
ISBN-13: 978-1426890024
Genre: Historical Romance
Book: Book One in Napoleonic Series
Main Characters: Arie De Voss & Mathilda Heidel
On sale at: Carina Press

Tormented by guilt. Haunted by scandal. Freed by love.

Austria, 1804
Eight years ago, Dutch composer Arie De Voss claimed his late mentor's final symphony as his own and became an icon. But fame has a price: fear of discovery now poisons his attempts to compose a redemptive masterpiece. Until a new muse appears, intoxicating and inspiring him...

Mathilda Heidel renounced her own musical gift to marry, seeking a quiet life to escape the shame surrounding her birth. Sudden widowhood finds her tempted by song once more. An unexpected introduction to her idol, Arie De Voss, renews Mathilda's passion for the violin--and ignites a passion for the man himself.

But when lust and lies reach a crescendo, Arie will be forced to choose: love or truth?

My latest historical romance, SONG OF SEDUCTION, is released by Carina Press this week, and I know that many writers and readers have had questions about Harlequin's brand new digital-first venture. I can only speak for my experiences, but I also dragged my lovely editor, Deborah Nemeth, to give us her point of view too.

I submitted SONG OF SEDUCTION to Carina on its first day open for acquisitions. The tagline "Where no great story goes untold" really caught my attention. For three years I'd tried finding a good home for my Austrian-set historical romance. Editors loved my voice and the characters, but the Austrian setting was a deal-breaker.

But Carina seemed different, with the full weight of Harlequin at its back to ensure the venture had a fighting chance. When Executive Editor Angela James offered to acquire SONG OF SEDUCTION (ROOB review) and make it part of the initial batch of Carina offerings for the June 7th launch, I was thrilled.

Working with Deborah Nemeth was also a thrill. She adored my story, which had so long been overlooked because of its unusual setting. Her editorial direction helped resolve a few pesky places that had been bugging me for ages. The romance is stronger because of her input.

To be honest, there's no telling how well all of this will go. Carina Press is, at its heart, an experiment. But they've taken a chance on my story and given me the tools to make it a success. If those same chances are being taken across the whole of Carina Press's literary offerings, then, as readers, we'll all in for a treat! I couldn't ask for more.

Now I'll turn it over to Deb!

I was thrilled to become one of Carina Press’s developmental editors. Harlequin is one of the savviest digital publishers out there, and as one of their imprints, Carina Press is fortunate to have a production team with members who have up to ten years of digital experience. I like working for smart people from whom I can continue to learn and grow, and you don’t get much sharper than Angela James, our executive editor.

And as much as I love romance, I enjoy having the freedom to acquire and edit in any genre, from straight mysteries and SFF to love stories that don’t have a traditional romance structure/ending. Carina gives authors this same freedom from genre constraints while enabling them to benefit from Harlequin’s publishing expertise.

With regard to acquisitions, I want to see strong, flawed characters who are passionate about their goals. I like stories to take off from the first page and mount to a grand finale, engaging my emotions, although with a mystery the engagement may be more cerebral. I acquire all heat levels from sweet to erotica, all lengths over 15k words. I'm open to most genres--anything but young adult, inspirational or super-gory horror (but there are other Carina Press editors who'll love to read your inspy or horror ms).

• I like mysteries to be clever, whether cozy or hard-boiled or procedural, with or without romantic elements.
• I'm seeking richly detailed, well-researched historical fiction and historical romance with dialogue that subtly conveys the period flavor while still being readable and natural-sounding. I'm wide open when it comes to time periods, settings and characters--centurions, knights, Saracens, Vikings, princes, artists, explorers, Moguls, concubines, mandarins, privateers, Regency bucks, cowboys, samurai, sheriffs, courtesans, bootleggers, squadron leaders.
• I'm looking for all sorts of SFF, from epic fantasies, space operas, and steampunk to paranormals featuring shifters, vamps, demons, witches, ghosts, psychics, djinn and fae.
• In a thriller/suspense novel I look for fast-paced action and plenty of plot twists.
• I enjoy both angsty women's fiction and lighthearted romantic comedies/chick lit.
• In a contemporary romance I like to see strong, well-structured conflict, something beyond a misunderstanding or a character's determination not to commit.
• I'm seeking multicultural fiction that explores the challenges posed by different traditions. A former resident of Puerto Rico, I'm particularly attracted to Latin cultures, but I'm interested in all types of heritages as well interracial romances and fiction depicting any immigrant experience.
• I'm open to GLBT fiction in all genres and heat levels.
• Genre blends are welcome: historical paranormal, m/m fantasy, paranormal suspense, and so on. I'd love to acquire a space opera, steampunk or historical mystery with a really cool sleuth to base a series on.

I accept direct submissions. Send your query in the body of an email and attach a full, polished ms and synopsis in .rtf or .doc files to deborahnemetheditor at gmail.com.

About Carrie Lofty:
Born in California and raised in the Midwest, Carrie Lofty (official website) met her English husband while studying abroad--the best souvenir! Since completing her master's degree in history, she's been devoted to raising their two precocious daughters, managing Unusual Historicals, and writing romance. Also, look for her "Dark Age Dawning" trilogy of hot-n-dirty apocalyptic romances, co-written with Ann Aguirre under the name Ellen Connor. Nightfall kicks it off in June 2011, available from Berkley Sensation. You can catch up with Carrie on Twitter and Facebook.

About Deborah Nemeth:
Since Deborah Nemeth began reading before her fourth birthday and stops only when she absolutely has to, it was probably inevitable that she would major in English literature and eventually become an editor, a profession she's pursued for five years. As an utter bookslut, she loves to read all sorts of things, from SFF to mysteries to historical romance. Over the years she's lived in Ohio, Michigan, Chicago and Puerto Rico, although she spends most of her time in places such as nineteenth-century Bath or Middle-earth. Currently she lives in the Mid-Atlantic with her husband (a candidate for sainthood) and two beautiful daughters. You may follow her on Twitter.

It's giveaway / contest time again! Carrie Lofty is giving away a copy of Song of Seduction to one of our visitors, who'll leave a comment on this guestblog-post, telling us who you think are sexy Dutchmen. She made sure to say that links to pictures are highly encouraged!!!! We all love to ogle some man-candy ;-)

On June 16th, 2010 23.59h CET this giveaway will close and a winner will be picked with a random.org generator.


Leontine said...

Of course I now am on the hunt for some sexy Dutch men and found this one fairly quickly: Gert and Geert http://www.ohlalaparis.com/ohlalaparis/2006/12/deutch_male_mod.html

Leontine said...

He may not have lived in the Netherlands but he has Dutch blood flowing in his veins, that's for sure LOL

BIO: http://www.netglimse.com/celebs/pages/marcus_schenkenberg/index.shtml

PHOTO: http://1.bp.blogspot.com/_iuoJYeuqt1w/SVKw_ciTumI/AAAAAAAAAUs/YgNsF_eNPyU/s400/marcus_schenkenberg_04.jpg

Leontine said...

Quote Deborah: I want to see strong, flawed characters who are passionate about their goals. I like stories to take off from the first page and mount to a grand finale, engaging my emotions, although with a mystery the engagement may be more cerebral.

This is such a huge trigger for me!If anything else, this is what I am looking for when I pick up a book. I love to explore different/unique venues, storytelling and characters but at the core, or perhaps better said, at the foundation of the story I want what you mentioned. I can't wait to read some Carina Press novel and though I might start with Salome At Sunrise you can bet Song Of Seduction is on my wishlist to be purchased this month :)

@Carrie Lofty - I talked to Pearl face to face this week, read her review where both romance and historic setting sounded so good again. I'm so glad that you got a chance to tell this story and lo and behold, a Dutch man for a hero...now that is definitely unique!!

Marissa said...

Just read a historical where the Dutch were the bad guys lol... Dutch heroes... never read about them before, the blurb sounds intriguing! On my wishlist now!

As for sexy Dutch men... Mark v/d Loo of course!!!! Very yummy!


Natascha / Ashleagh said...

I'm so going to fall into repeatance but Arie Boomsma is so doing it for me!!!!


And no Leontine, I will not bring up Jeroen van Koningsbrugge *giggles & winks*
but totally agreeing with you on Marcus Schenkenberg *need a fan here*

Carrie Lofty said...

Oh, that Mark Vanderloo is lovely! He's like a Dutch Brad Pitt.

Thanks for inviting me to stop by today, ladies! And extra thanks for the pictures :)

Ashley said...

I think Alexander Skarsgard is Dutch...and soooo HOT!!!

hewella1 at gmail dot com

Sheree said...

I nominate any and all Dutch male swimmers, for their tall, hot bodies if nothing else. ;)

Pieter van den Hoogenband aka the Flying Dutchman

Sheree said...

Also, Dutch skaters!

That Sven Kramer boy is so adorable and looks so hot in that skin tight skating outfit:

ironss [at] gmail [dot] com

Keri Stevens said...

Louis van Amstel on Dancing With the Stars. When I'm rolling in dough (whenever that is) I'm going to hire him for private dance lessons.

Carrie Lofty said...

Keri, <3 Louis!!

Natascha / Ashleagh said...

@Keri Oh yea I forgot about Louis! he's easy on the eyes!

Mitzi H. said...

I'm partial to Michiel Huisman.


A little young for me....but hey, I like the pictures...Hehehe.

mitzihinkey at sbcglobal.net

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