2015 Marks the start of a whole new adventure for me. After thirteen historical romances, I am entering contemporary romance in a big way with seven contemporary Western romances. Slow Hand (Sourcebooks, Nov. 2014) is the first release in a four book series from Sourcebooks, to be followed by Rough Rider (Feb. 2015), Sharp Shooter (Jun 2015) and Silver Tongue (Nov. 2015). I then have a three book series coming from Kensington. (Hell on Heels, Two to Wrangle, Beauty & the Bull Rider) in early 2016.
It seems this jump from 18th century rakes to 21st century cowboys has surprised a lot of readers. To be honest, I’ve surprised myself. The story behind the story is that a good friend of mine who loves my erotic historicals but also enjoys contemporary romances, urged me for almost two years to write a hot contemporary story. Although we brainstormed ideas for months, none of the ideas bore any fruit until I settled on cowboys.
Since I know a quite a bit about horses, having owned, trained, and shown, writing a contemporary Western seemed a logical direction for me. The only problem was I’d never been to Montana, the main setting for my series, and knew almost nothing about cattle ranching. It was only when I sat down to actually write it that I realized how little I actually knew about my subject!
My solution was to go about writing in the only way I knew how—by following exactly the same process I would use if I were writing a historical. I started digging. I studied maps, googled places for my settings. I then went about learning all I could about cattle ranching and stock contracting, discovering quickly that my best possible source was– the actual ranchers and contractors!
Last year I spend almost three weeks in a guest cabin at a private ranch in Three Fork, Montana. I made a similar trip to Wyoming last May for the same purpose. Over the past eighteen months, I have met and spoken with ranchers, rodeo cowboys, stock contractors, and wild horse trainers. I’ve learned about raising and breeding cattle, wolf conservation, and wild horse gathering (all of which is part of this series).
This has been one of the best experiences ever because I found the inspiration for my stories and characters by getting to know many people who actually live the life I am writing about.
Although this new endeavor marks a distinct departure from my historical romances, my readers will find that my trademarks still remain—well-researched, scorching hot, emotionally compelling, character-driven stories.
Wade spun toward his office. “Help yourself to the phone and anything else while I get cleaned up.” He paused again on the threshold. “Of course, you’re welcome to use my office if you need greater privacy.” He added over his shoulder with a look of devilment. “Or in the event any wild impulse overtakes you while I shower.”
He went to work on his shirt buttons. His collar was soon wide open revealing a generous show of muscular chest that make her hands itch to rip it off him. She diverted her gaze and curled her itchy hands by her sides.
“Have no fear, cowboy,” Nikki replied in a tone meant to disguise the warm flush that had come over her. “I corralled all my wild impulses long ago.”
“Did you, now?” He still stood in doorway, head cocked. “Somehow, I think you may have missed a few strays.”
“Maybe I need to make myself clearer. I have an aversion to cocky cowboys.”
Just keep telling yourself that, Nikki. Maybe if you repeat it often enough it’ll become true.
“Is that so?” His brows flew upward. “I can’t say I ever met a woman with an actual aversion to me.”
“Don’t take it personally. It’s nothing against you in particular, but to your type.”
“And what do you think you know about my type?”
“Since I don’t have a pole handy, enough to keep you at arms-length. Besides that, this whole line of conversation is entirely inappropriate in light of professional ethics, don’t you think? You are my attorney, after all.”
“Well, darlin’,” he scratched his unshaven jaw, “there’s a little hitch to that.”
“What do you mean? You said you’d help me.”
“And I will, but you can’t engage my professional services until I know who you are.”
“I’ve told you who I am!” she insisted.
“Sweetheart, I’m a lawyer, and according to the law, your claim don’t weigh without authentication.”
“So what are you saying? That you don’t believe me?”
“I’m not saying that at all. Only that our professional relationship will commence once you get your I.D. In the interim,” His gaze slid over her in a way that threatened to melt her insides, “you’d best find yourself a nice, long, sturdy pole.”
Victoria Vane is an award-winning author of smart and sexy romance. Her works range from wild comedic romps to emotionally compelling erotic romance. Victoria’s books have received more than twenty awards and nominations to include the 2014 RONE Award for Treacherous Temptations and Library Journal Best E-Book romance of 2012 for The Devil DeVere series. She lives the beautiful upstate of South Carolina with her husband, two sons, a little black dog, and an Arabian horse.
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