Shannon here: Historical romance author, Shawna K. Williams shares her insight into her real life and fictional romances. Comment on any post dated July 30th – August 3rd for a chance to win a copy of her book, No Other. Deadline: August 11th, 11:59 pm central time. Here’s Shawna:
- What’s the most romantic present your spouse ever bought for you?
When Desert breeze first offered me a contract for No Other, I was a little unsure because at the time they were an e-press only. I respected several other authors published by them, and I just had this feeling it was the direction I was supposed to take, so I signed. Even though I knew their plans were to expand into print, it was a risk and I questioned myself a lot.
Ebooks were just starting to catch on. At the time, Kindles were still $300. Money was tight for us, so in my mind it simply wasn’t an option. I vaguely mentioned to my husband that some day, when the price came down, I’d like to get one. Then I put it out of my mind. Don’t know where hubby found the extra $300, but he ordered one. He was so cute. He wanted it to be a surprise, but he was so excited for me to get it that one night while we were watching tv, he just blurted out, “I got you a Kindle!” I was shocked, surprised, elated, and utterly melted.
- What’s the most romantic present you ever bought your spouse?
Before we moved to Arkansas we lived in Houston, TX and used to come to Arkansas and vacation at Devil’s Den State Park. Seasonal changes in Houston are mostly just variations in the level of humidity — summer time meaning you sweat just by taking a single step outside, and in winter that you can take four or five steps before breaking into a sweat.
The cool mountain air in Arkansas was a huge relief, and we frequently caught ourselves saying, “I love it here.” There was a T-shirt in the gift shop with that exact phrase that I wanted to buy for hubby and I, but all they had were children’s sizes.
So… fast forward a couple of years to when we decided to take the plunge and just move. Same response. It was fall, the leaves changed color, most mornings there were deer in the pasture behind the house. For everything we marveled at, one of us would utter, “I love it here.” For hubby’s birthday I found a T-shirt shop, designed shirts for our whole family and had that phrase printed on them.” It was great watching hubby pull each shirt out of the box.
- Who said, “I love you” first, you or your spouse?
Hubby did. Six days after our first date. Kinda freaked me out, actually. I took a few more weeks before I came to the same conclusion.
- What’s the most romantic thing your hero ever did for your heroine?
He gives her a family heirloom — a locket that belonged to his grandmother. His and Meri’s relationship is complicated and kept secret out of fear of what may happen if their discovered. He didn’t have pictures of them, so he wrote their names in tiny letters and put them inside the locket instead.
- Where is the most romantic place your hero and heroine have ever been?
There is a scene in which Jakob takes Meri out to see the house he was raised in. It had been confiscated by the government when his parents (who are German) were interned at Crystal City during WWII. These properties were often sold at auction in real life, and in the story his family’s land was bought by an oil company for future expansion. At the time he and Meri go there to explore, it’s still vacant farm land with a house that’s been abandoned for several years. I know that doesn’t sound like a romantic location to visit, but it very much is. If you read the book, you’ll see.
- What simple gesture does your heroine do that melts your hero every time?
This isn’t really a gesture. It’s a quirk. When Meri gets emotional, her ears turn red. She’s always trying to hide it under her hair, but Jakob thinks it’s adorable.
- What simple gesture does your hero do that melts your heroine every time?
She loves watching him with his niece, Beth. She’s a six month old baby whom Jakob dotes over. What girl doesn’t like seeing a man with a baby?
About Shawna: Having never considered becoming a writer, Shawna K. Williams’ path changed in a single night all because of a dream. Her early writings were a mere attempt to fill in gaps within the dream and satisfy her curiosity, but later became the inspiration for her first two novels. She is a content editor for Desert Breeze Publishing and Solstice Publishing, acquisitions editor/social media specialist for The Wordsmith Journal Magazine, speaker, homeschooling mom and multi-published author of twentieth century historical fiction. Shawna enjoys books in almost any genre as long as they contain strong characters tackling real-life grit. She also has a thing for dogs and pygmy goats, and believes the world would be a better place if people aspired to be the person their pet believes them to be.
Shawna’s books: No Other, In All Things, The Good Fight, Orphaned Hearts, and coming in Dec. 2012: A Hand to Hold. All books are available as ebooks. No Other is also in print, In All Things releases in print in November 2012, and all other books will be available in print in 2013. Learn more at http://shawnakwilliams.com/, http://shawnawilliams-oldsmobile.blogspot.com/, https://twitter.com/shawnakwilliams, and http://www.facebook.com/pages/Shawna-K-Williams/236629884245.
About the book: In the aftermath of WWII all Jakob Wilheimer wants is to get over his pain, get on with life, and if at all possible, forgive those who’ve wronged his family — including himself. But it’s hard to do when there are constant reminders. One of them being his former schoolmate, now teacher, Meri Parker — Miss Port Delamar Pearl, Mayor’s daughter, Belle of the town — Meri Parker.
After enduring the stigma and isolation associated with the internment camp, the awkwardness of going back to school should’ve been a cake walk. But Jakob didn’t expect to find himself inexplicably drawn to Meri. Or to discover that the pain and loneliness of her life surpassed his own. She needed to be rescued from the wretched people seeking to control her life. And more than anything, he needed to be the one to save her.
Come back August 1st for Shawna’s romantic excerpt!