Thanks for stopping by today, Elizabeth! We are thrilled to be able to talk to you today about your Tricks of the Ton series. For readers unfamiliar with it, could you please tell us more about the series?
Thank you so much for hosting me here today on Under the Covers. I’m Elizabeth Michels, author of the Tricks of the Ton series. It’s hard to believe that almost exactly one year ago my first book, book one of this series was released. It’s been a fabulous year of fun with these crazy characters. Tricks of the Ton is a 3 book series set in England’s Regency Era and consists of MUST LOVE DUKES, DESPERATELY SEEKING SUZANNA, and HOW TO LOSE A LORD IN 10 DAYS OR LESS. As you may be able to guess from the movie takeoff titles, these are fun stories of 3 ladies who go in disguise to find happiness and love in life. But, when they put on masks they don’t realize the trouble they’re starting. Oh, and there are swoon-worthy gentlemen, let’s not forget them. *grins* I loved writing these books, and it’s so exciting to share them with readers.
What would you say was the biggest obstacle in writing your first book? How did you overcome it?
Well…there’s a story there. Want to hear it?
I was about halfway through writing MUST LOVE DUKES when I came across the opportunity to pitch a book to literary agents and editors at a writers’ conference. I only had half of a book, but how often did this sort of chance come around? It was my dream to have a book published. I’d heard that agents only ever asked for the first few chapters anyway, so no one would know the book wasn’t complete. What did I have to lose? I planned what I would say, what I would wear, how it would all transpire.
What I didn’t plan on was my mom’s heart related hospitalization the day before the conference or the fact that a literary agent would ask for the entire book as soon as I could send it. This is why lying is bad, folks, even if it is in the pursuit of a dream. When I left the conference that my mom insisted I attend in spite of her illness, I drove straight back to the hospital where I’d left her. The next two weeks passed in a haze of hospital waiting room visits and words that would become my first book. I wrote the end of MUST LOVE DUKES while in the ICU waiting room and sent it off to my (now) literary agent the week before my mom passed away.
I’m not sure if my biggest obstacle in writing that first book was the state of my life at the time, or the fact that I bluffed and said I had a complete manuscript. But, I do wonder if everything would have fallen into place if it hadn’t happened that way. As for how I overcame those obstacles, I wrote. I dug my claws into an opportunity to reach my dreams, and I didn’t let go no matter what. I still try to do that today.
Out of all the books you’ve written so far, which has been the most pleasure to write?
The next one that’s still a jumble of ideas and characters in my head. I love the possibilities the next book holds, the promise of it being realized, and one day being able to hold it in the palm of my hand. My favorite part of the writing process is plotting out the story on the giant cork board in my office and dreaming of what could happen within the pages.
But, if I have to choose between my existing books, then it would have to be DESPERATELY SEEKING SUZANNA. I love the cast of characters that fill that book and I’m so excited to be revisiting them with what I’m working on now.
What’s the best advice you can give a writer about writing Historical Romance novels?
Tell the story. It’s really easy to get caught up in historical research, fine tuning the craft of your writing, and the day to day drama of your life, but the answer to the majority of writer problems is to write. Just write! There’s a story you want to tell or you wouldn’t be writing a book, so tell it. Let your characters run wild on the page, and write!
When not reading, writing or researching, what would we find you doing?
Laundry! LOL Actually, I spend most of my non-writer time with my family. My husband and little boy expect crazy things of me like my assistance with homework after school and dinner together at night. It’s madness! Just kidding, I love my home life. Our house is in an ongoing state of renovation since we purchased it last year, so most of the free time is spent painting cabinet doors or planting flowers in the yard. And, we’re about to break ground on an addition and do some major repairs to our dock so I don’t think the construction will end any time soon. It’s a good thing I enjoy projects around the house, because I have an endless supply around here. Come visit sometime, and I’ll put you to work.
What’s your favorite thing about being a writer?
I can’t choose just one, so here’s a list:
- When I’m writing a scene and I’m laughing right along with the character or crying with them. And, I walk away from my laptop unable to wait to share the magic that just happened there.
- The shoes. Yes, I’m serious. I get to live in yoga pants and fuzzy slippers and then go to events and put on glitzy heels. It’s the best business ever!
- The readers, writers, and industry professionals I’ve gotten to meet through writing romance are amazing. I feel like I’ve found my people, and I just want to go around hugging everyone. No, really. If we ever meet, I will most likely hug you. Brace yourself.
- Having someone, and it only takes one someone, read a story I wrote and connect with the characters like they’re old friends. I love the knowledge that in some way, my book brightened their day or comforted them during a troublesome time. I would continue to write books even if it was just for that one person…maybe I should have started with that since now the shoe thing seems kind of shallow. *shrugs and smiles*
What’s next for Elizabeth Michels?
I’m currently working on a new 4 book series called the Spare Heirs, the first of which is set to release in January, 2016. I’m really excited about these new stories, and I can’t wait to share them with the world! These books are centered on a secret group of second, third, and fourth sons of aristocratic families who band together for survival in London society. They are a wild bunch of gentlemen to be sure. And the heroines? Well, I think you’ll recognize them from Tricks of the Ton. In fact, I’m working on Evangeline Green’s book now. Evangeline first made an appearance in DESPERATELY SEEKING SUZANNA, her sister Sue’s story, and I’m so happy to finally give Evie her day to shine now.
Look for THE INFAMOUS HEIR, THE REBEL HEIR, THE WICKED HEIR, and THE UNSUITABLE HEIR beginning in January 2016!
We can’t wait for all those to come out!!!!
She Can’t Resist a Dare
Lillian Phillips could not imagine how her quiet, simple life had come to this. Blackmailed by
the Mad Duke of Thornwood into accepting one wild dare after another…all because of a pocket watch. Desperate to recover he beloved father’s pawned timepiece, Lily did something reckless and dangerous and delicious—something that led to a night she’d never forget.
He Has a Reputation for Scandal
When Devon Grey, Duke of Thornwood, runs into the mesmerizing, intoxicating, thieving woman who literally stole from his bedchamber—along with his new pocket watch—Devon plots his revenge. If the daring wench likes to play games, he’s happy to oblige. After all, what’s the
use of being the Mad Duke if you can’t have some fun? But the last laugh just might be on him.
Her Cinderella Moment
Sue Green just wanted one night to be the pretty one. But a few glasses of champagne and one wild disguise later, she’s in some serious trouble. Who knew the devastatingly handsome face of Lord Holden Ellis would get in the way of her foot? And how exactly did all that high-kick dancing start in the first place? At least she blamed it all on her new persona—Suzanna. So Society’s most eligible bachelor will never find out the truth.
All Holden wants is the truth. Who was that vixen who seduced him so thoroughly, then disappeared? The only one who seems to have any answers about Suzanna is Miss Sue Green. She’s promised to help him find his mystery woman, but in truth she’s not being all that helpful. And in truth, the more time Holden spends with Sue—witty, pretty, and disarmingly honest—the more he realizes he may have found exactly what he’s been looking for all along…
Katie Moore, a head strong lady, was more likely to be found in the stables than a ballroom, until the accident. After being thrown from her horse she is left injured and filled with bitterness, yet still the foremost expert on equine in the area.
Andrew Clifton, Lord Amberstall spent the past two years escaping the London gossip, while living in the wilds of Scotland. Meanwhile, there is trouble on his southern estate, trouble that follows him to Scotland, forcing him to return home.
On his journey south, his horse is injured and he becomes the unintentional house guest of the Moore’s home. While Katie tends to his horse the two are at odds about everything from the proper care of animals to how to behave at a dinner party. But, when danger finds him, his only hope of survival is a love he doesn’t understand.