Jan 13, 2017

Kelli A. Wilkins - Guest Post

Think Historical Romances Are Boring? Think Again!
By Kelli A. Wilkins

Hi Everyone,
A woman recently told me that she loved romances, but didn’t read historicals because they were boring. I replied, “Some of them might be, but not mine—far from it.” I’m not sure if I convinced her to try historicals, but our conversation got me wondering, why do some romance readers think historicals are dull?
Maybe they were turned off by boring history lessons in school, or they think nothing exciting happened in the days before electricity and the Internet. Perhaps they tried a historical romance ages ago and it was weighted down with hard-to-read language or endless “boring” details.
I write historical, gay, paranormal, fantasy, and contemporary romances. People often ask me how I can switch genres so easily. “What’s the trick?” they want to know. Well, the trick is… there is none. Writing historical romances is pretty much like writing contemporaries. I use the same basic storytelling techniques—an interesting plot, sympathetic characters, and the right mix of backstory, setting, and details that draw readers into the story and keep them there.
Just because historical romances are set in time periods before cars and cell phones, that doesn’t (or shouldn’t) make them boring. There is plenty of action, adventure, intrigue, danger, comedy, and sensual love scenes. And these are the same elements that go into making a compelling contemporary romance.
The key to writing an appealing historical is to create characters who are engaging and lively. I don’t have “stuffy shirts” making long-winded speeches about politics, law, or anything not crucial to the storyline. You won’t find me (or my characters) giving anyone a history lesson!
I bring my historical romances “out of the history books” and into the everyday lives of my characters. I focus on how the hero and heroine meet, fall in love, overcome their obstacles and challenges, and eventually live happily-ever-after. And they are far from shy when it comes to having fun in the bedroom! The heat levels in my romances vary from mild to super-scorching hot—depending on the characters and their storylines.
Some of my heroines are virgins waiting to meet the love of their life (Michelle from Loving a Wild Stranger), while others are curious and want to explore their sexuality (Odaria from The Viking’s Witch). Other heroines are far from virginal (Shauna from Dangerous Indenture) and aren’t shy about giving in to their desires, despite the so-called impropriety of the times.
As I’m writing, I only include the historical details and descriptions that are integral to the story. I don’t bog down the plot with a step-by-step procedure for churning butter, or go into an endless description of how to unfasten a corset (unless it’s befuddling the hero who’s eager to remove it!).
For example, when I wrote my western, Lies, Love & Redemption, I researched what life was like on the Nebraska prairie in 1877, all about general stores, and other elements of the Old West. I added some of the interesting things I learned into the storyline or weaved details into the background, but I didn’t use everything. It was important for me to convey the flavor of the time period while keeping the reader hooked and the plot moving.
Every romance genre has its fans. Some people like to read contemporary romances, others live for paranormals, and there are those who switch up genres and read anything that sounds appealing. I like writing historicals—but I also write contemporary, paranormal, fantasy, and gay romances, too. Why? Because I enjoy writing about interesting characters that fall in love, whenever and wherever that may be.
If you’ve never read historical romances, why not give them a try? You might just find yourself swept away into the past…
I hope you enjoyed this inside look at writing historical romances. I welcome comments and questions from readers. Be sure to follow my blog for the latest updates and visit me on social media.
Happy Reading,
Kelli A. Wilkins
Here are the descriptions and links to my two newest historical romances,
Loving a Wild Stranger and Lies, Love & Redemption

Loving a Wild Stranger

A woman running from her past… straight into the arms of an untamed man


In a moment of desperation, Kathleen Stanton flees her pampered life in Kingston, New York and ends up stranded in a small town in the Michigan Territory. Out of money and forced to rely on her instincts, she impersonates a handsome stranger’s mail-order bride.

Committed to her deception, Kathleen calls herself Michelle and starts her new life with Luther in an isolated cabin in the wilderness. Luther can’t believe his luck when his beautiful bride arrives, but something doesn’t feel right about his new wife. Michelle has terrifying nightmares involving a man named Roger and is reluctant to talk about where she came from.

Luther’s friend, Redfeather visits and tries to convince Luther to send Michelle back east. Distrusting Michelle, he warns Luther that his bride is not what she seems. But Luther is in love with Michelle, and he is harboring a secret of his own—one that might force Michelle to reject him when she learns the truth.

Michelle falls in love with Luther and adapts to her new way of life. Together, they face off against brutal townspeople and overcome harsh living conditions. When they finally give in to their desires and agree to become a proper man and wife, a dark figure from Michelle’s past resurfaces and threatens to destroy everything.

Order your copy of Loving a Wild Stranger here:

Lies, Love & Redemption
Shot and left for dead, Sam Hixton stumbles into a general store on the Nebraska prairie and collapses into the arms of Cassie Wilcox.
Cassie’s world is turned upside down when the handsome stranger drops into her life. Sam is another complication she doesn’t need: her business is dying and her trouble with the townspeople is escalating. Yet she’s determined to keep the store open — no matter what the cost.
As Sam recovers from his injuries, he hides the truth about his identity and convinces Cassie to let him work in the store. He’s attracted to her and admires her independent nature but quickly realizes Cassie’s in way over her head. They fight their growing attraction, and Cassie questions whether she can trust her fragile heart to a mysterious stranger. Will he accept her once he knows about her troubled past?
Cassie resists Sam’s advances and represses her feelings until one fateful night when they give in to their fiery passion. Together, they work out a plan to save the store but find their efforts are thwarted—and their lives endangered—by the locals.
Sam’s secret returns to haunt him and pulls him away just when Cassie needs him the most. Will he regain her trust when she learns the truth?
Cassie has everything invested in the store—can she save it and find true love with Sam before it’s too late?
Order Lies, Love & Redemption on Amazon:



Read more about the book and get links to other platforms here:



ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Kelli A. Wilkins is an award-winning author who has published more than 100 short stories, 19 romance novels, and 5 non-fiction books. Her romances span many genres and heat levels.
Loving a Wild Stranger was released in January 2017. This historical/pioneer romance is set in the wilds of the Michigan Territory and blends tender romance with adventure.
Kelli's third Medallion Press romance, Lies, Love & Redemption was released in September 2016. This spicy historical western is set on the Nebraska prairie in 1877.
In 2016 Kelli began re-releasing her romances previously published by Amber Quill Press. Visit her website and blog for a full title list, book summaries, and other information.
Her writing book, You Can Write—Really! A Beginner’s Guide to Writing Fiction is a fun and informative non-fiction guide based on her years of experience as a writer. It’s filled with writing exercises and helpful tips all authors can use.
If you like to be scared, check out Kelli’s horror ebooks: Dead Til Dawn and Kropsy’s Curse.
Kelli posts on her Facebook author page: https://www.facebook.com/AuthorKelliWilkins and Twitter: www.Twitter.com/KWilkinsauthor. She also writes a weekly blog: http://kelliwilkinsauthor.blogspot.com/.
Visit her website, www.KelliWilkins.com to learn more about all of her writings, read book excerpts, reviews, and more. Readers can sign up for her newsletter here: http://eepurl.com/HVQqb.

 

CATCH UP WITH KELLI

Here are a few links to find Kelli & her writings on the web
Newsletter sign-up: http://eepurl.com/HVQqb
Medallion Press Author Page: http://medallionpress.com/author/kelli-wilkins/