Today I would like to welcome author Maggi Andersen to RFTC. Maggi is currently on tour promoting her book, A Baron in Her Bed and has stopped by to answer a few questions. Please give Maggi a warm welcome.
Maggi Andersen and her lawyer husband are empty nesters, living in the countryside outside Sydney with their cat and the demanding wildlife. Parrots demand seed, possums fruit, ducks swim in the stream at the bottom of the garden, and the neighbours chickens roam their yard providing wonderful eggs. She began writing adventure stories at age eight. Three children, a Bachelor of Arts degree and a Master of Arts in Creative Writing degree later, her novels are still filled with adventure and suspense, but are also passionate romances. Georgette Heyer among others, brought inspiration to her seductive Regencies and she also writes darker, Victorian novels, contemporary romantic suspense and young adult.
She supports the RSPCA (The Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to animals) and animals often feature in her books.
Places to find Maggi:
First off, can you tell us a bit about you?
I’m an Australian author of historical and contemporary romances. I live in the Southern Highlands of New South Wales with my husband, a retired lawyer, and our cat. I began to write seriously after I’d completed a BA and an MA in Creative Writing and my children had left the nest.
Did you always want to be a writer?
Becoming an author certainly didn’t happen overnight. I began writing at around eight years old and while I always intended to be a writer, life got in the way. When I finally committed to it, the stories just poured out. Discovering my voice, I wrote poetry, a children’s story, a young adult novel, a Regency romance and a thriller, while reading novels and everything on writing I could get my hands on. I also continued to do courses. What I discovered about myself in the process was that I loved a happy ending, but also liked elements of mystery or intrigue in the stories I read. Georgette Heyer brought the Georgian and Regency eras to life in her wonderful novels. I grew to know and love that time in history and many of my novels are set there. Victoria Holt was another writer who inspired me and I write stories set in the Victorian era also.
What kind of writer are you? Panster or Plotter?
I began as a panster, just beginning with an idea and seeing where it would lead me. But it often led me up the garden path or into a corner, so now I do try to plot ahead. The sort of books I write call for it. But I let my characters have their heads and lead me off on tangents as I get to know them. By the end of the first draft we’re old friends.
Where do your ideas come from?
I’ve always had a great imagination. Although a reviewer once likened me to a mix of Austen, Heyer and Cartland, I don’t think you could say I write like anyone. I read many other books in the same genre and have my favorite authors, but I bring to my work my life experience and the characters I want to spend time with. Not the villains though, I have to say. I always enjoy them coming to a sticky end.
A la Twitter style, can you describe your book (or series) in 140 characters or less.
Horatia Cavendish, bored with country life, becomes involved in an intrigue while falling in love with Guy Fortescue, who has returned from France to claim his title.
What are some of your favorite kinds of stories to read?
Usually the kind I like to write. Georgian, Regency and Victorian romance, also contemporary romantic suspense and thrillers.
Do you have a favorite book and if so what is it?
The Black Hawk by Joanna Bourne.
What are the scenes that are the hardest for you to write?
Love scenes require a lot of work to get just right, but they’re fun to write. I particularly love the dialogue between the lovers which just seems to write itself. Action scenes, a fight scene for instance, would be the most difficult to compose. It requires more than just bam, biff and thud. You have to choreograph their movements, show the thoughts of the point of view character and what’s happening around them etc. There’s a fight scene in A Baron in Her Bed. Horatia gets involved in it, much to Guy’s annoyance.
If you could have dinner with any three authors, who would you choose and why?
Eloisa James, because of her knowledge and wit, I think she’d be fun. Julia Quinn, I’m sure she must be charming company, as her books are. Joanna Bourne, she displays a very clever mind for intrigue.
Last question, are you working on anything right now?
I’m writing the second book of the Regency spy series, Taming a Gentleman Spy. Spy, John Haldane, Earl of Strathairn, puts duty before love as he grapples with a dangerous plotter against the crown. Lady Sibella Brandreth, a Marquess’ daughter, has been a little in love with Strathairn for years, but their relationship has never risen above friendship. She managed to avoid marrying any of her suitors since her first Season five years ago, but her luck has run out. Her brother, the Marquess of Brandreth insists she marry and has chosen the man to be her husband.
London, 1816. A handsome baron. A faux betrothal. And Horatia's plan to join the London literary set takes a dangerous turn.
Now that the war with France has ended, Baron Guy Fortescue arrives in England to claim his inheritance, abandoned over thirty years ago when his father fled to France after killing a man in a duel. When Guy is set upon by footpads in London, a stranger, Lord Strathairn, rescues and befriends him. But while travelling to his country estate, Guy is again attacked. He escapes only to knock himself out on a tree branch.
Aspiring poet Horatia Cavendish has taken to riding her father's stallion, "The General", around the countryside of Digswell dressed as a groom. She has become bored of her country life and longs to escape to London to pursue her desire to become part of the London literary set. When she discovers Guy lying unconscious on the road, the two are forced to take shelter for the night in a hunting lodge. After Guy discovers her ruse, a friendship develops between them.
Guy suspects his relative, Eustace Fennimore is behind the attacks on his life. He has been ensconced in Rosecroft Hall during the family's exile and will become the heir should Guy die. Horatia refuses to believe her godfather, Eustace, is responsible. But when Guy proposes a faux betrothal to give him more time to discover the truth, she agrees. Secure in the knowledge that his daughter will finally wed, Horatia's father allows her to visit her blue-stocking aunt in London. But Horatia's time spent in London proves to be anything but a literary feast, for a dangerous foe plots Guy's demise. She is determined to keep alive her handsome fiance, who has proven more than willing to play the part of her lover even as he resists her attempts to save him.
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She supposed he considered England far behind Paris in most things fashionable. Finding herself pressed up against his hard chest produced the memory of how it looked unclothed. Her breath caught, and she wriggled within his arm. “We do not dance this close in England, my lord.”
He let her go in surprise then took up the pose again, leaving space between them. “Merci. I did not know. You have saved me from making a faux pas.”
She suspected he knew quite well, for the devilry in his eyes betrayed him. “You might learn by observing others, my lord,” she admonished him.
At least now she could breathe. But this was unlike the night they had spent together, when her disguise had protected her. Did he find her attractive?
She had no idea if his charm was merely part of his personality. It shouldn't matter, for he would choose a bride from the aristocracy, but somehow it did.
His hand at her waist, guiding her, made her recall their time in the hut and his indecent revelations of lovemaking. Her breath quickened at the thought of such an act perpetrated by him on some woman, and even possibly her. His proximity and the strength and pure maleness of him overwhelmed her.
Breathing in the familiar woody Bergamot scent, intermingled with starched linen and soap, she closed her eyes, but that made her dizzy. After examining his masterfully tied cravat adorned with a sapphire pin the color of his eyes, she raised her eyes to his. “I have not seen a cravat tied in that way before. What is it called?”
He smiled down at her. “I believe it is called Trone d'Armour.” The style hailed from France most likely. He was different from the English in other ways too. The French had a disconcerting way of looking at someone. Was he the real Baron Fortescue or an impostor?
Check out whats up for grabs.
Up For Grabs for entire tour:
- 1 lucky winner win win a $30 Amazon Gift Card
- 2 lucky winners win their choice of eBooks from Maggi's backlist
- Leave a meaningful comment or question for Maggi.
- Please leave your email address along with your comment to be entered.
- Giveaway ends March 15th.
Good Luck =)