Let’s lift our hands and welcome Victoria Vane with a rousing round of applause! Whoot! I LOVE hosting my fabulous author pals on the blog. Today I feel as if I am opening my blog doors to two authors rather than one because I originally came to know Victoria in her previous incarnation: Emery Lee. Together we were Sourcebooks authors, tossed together at various gatherings, and whether as Emery or Victoria, we hit it off, and she is another terrific romance writer I am blessed to be friends with.
Victoria is multi-talented with a diverse body of work. In fact, she has so much happening in the novel biz that she will return in November to celebrate the release of her newest endeavor, a hot contemporary cowboy series. *Whew!
For today, Victoria has been interviewed by moi, answering my lighthearted questions and “Off the Cuff” queries. AND, she is graciously offering one eBook copy of any of her current titles, winner’s choice. Cool! Just comment to be entered.
Victoria Vane is an award-winning author of smart and sexy romance. Her collective works of fiction have received over twenty reviewer awards and nominations to include the 2014 RONE Award for Treacherous Temptations, andLibrary Journal Best E-Book romance of 2012 for The Devil DeVere series. Her works range from historical to contemporary settings and include everything from wild comedic romps to emotionally compelling erotic romance. Look for her hot new contemporary cowboy series coming from Sourcebooks in Fall of 2014.
Connect with Victoria at the following places ~
Chatting with Victoria Vane ~
Q – If you could rewrite any classic novel, and change a plot point or the ending to suit you, what would it be and what would you change?
A – This is a very interesting question since I have already done this with E.M. Hull’s classic, The Sheik. When first published in 1919, E.M. Hulls’ The Sheik was an overnight bestseller with more than fifty printings the first two years of release. The book was also made into a silent film that catapulted its leading man, Rudolph Valentino, to superstardom. I read this novel about eighteen months ago and have never had such mixed feeling about a book as I did The Sheik. It had so much to offer with its strong characters and atmospheric prose, but it fell sadly short for me in so many other ways. I found the narrative repetitive and the pace plodding. There was too much navel-gazing on the heroine’s part, and far too little actual interaction between the hero and heroine for a romance. In sum, I loved and loathed it in equal measure. Nevertheless, this story captured my imagination.
Even though I had a number of other writing projects in progress, The Sheik held me hostage. Once I began fantasizing about alternate scenarios, dialogue, and plot twists, I knew the story was calling to me. I had no choice but to re-tell it the way I envisioned it.
As for my re-telling, the main plot, characters, and descriptive passages are largely unchanged. The biggest changes I made were telling the story from Diana’s POV, taking out the rape, and throwing the bedroom door wide open. Most importantly, however is my portrayal of Diana. Even though she falls in love with her captor, my version stays true to her strong and self-willed nature right to the end. While I did fear some backlash in re-writing a classic romance, my version of this story has been very well received by readers and was nominated for several awards.
Q – Do you have any phobias?
A – Yes! I am claustrophobic, acrophobic and have a strong aversion to pigs and clowns.
Q – Do you have any particular talents? Anything outside of the norm? Any other artistic skills besides writing?
A – Although I have never been able to read music, I am able to play “by ear.” I taught myself the guitar as a teen and now play the Celtic harp.
Q – If you could bring one of your characters to life to hang out with and be your BFF, which one would it be and why?
A – It would have to be Ludovic DeVere. He’s sexy, witty, and everything I love most in a romance hero. DeVere is unique in every way. He began as a secondary character in A Wild Night’s Bride but nearly stole the show the moment he opened his mouth. DeVere is the heart of the series and his character appears in every book. I am now up to eight books in the Devil DeVere series and have many more planned.
Q – If you had a time machine, where would you go? Would you live there or just visit for a while?
A – I am deeply enamored with the 18th century. I love almost everything about it – the music, the manners, the art, and plays. I love the beauty and decadence of the era. As far as living there, it would largely depend on my financial means. Wealth is wonderful and poverty is miserable in any era.
Q – What is the weirdest food you have ever eaten?
A – I am not terribly adventurous with exotic foods but I have tried alligator, snails, frog legs, and pickled octopus. I didn’t care for any of it.
Q – What is your fashion or accessory weakness?
A – I love pretty clothes and big shoes!
Q – Give us five words that best describe who you are.
A – Loving, loyal, Independent, willful, tenacious
Q – If you knew you had only a month left to live, what would you do?
A – Spent it doing what I love with the people I love.
Q – Who are your three favorite fictional heroes?
A – Jamie Fraser from Diana Gabaldon’s Outlander, Damerel from Georgette Heyer’s Venetia and my own Ludovic “the Devil” DeVere.
Q – What are your favorite books to read?
A – Although I do read other genres my first love is historical romance and romantic historical fiction.
Q – What were you like as a youngster?
A – I was a quiet, shy, bookworm from a very early age. I was also a horse lover from as far back as I can remember. My best years growing up were spent with books and horses. In high school I was a true geek. My friends and I always spent our lunch period in the school library.
Q – Where do you live now? What do you like and dislike about your part of the world?
A – Although I grew up in a small town in Maine, I have lived my entire adult life in the south (Florida, Georgia, SC, and Texas). I currently reside in the Upstate region of South Carolina. This part of the country represents the best of both worlds to me and has always felt like home. Due to a job loss in 2008, I spent eighteen months in central Texas. I loved the people there but couldn’t wait to get back home to South Carolina.
Q – If you could live anywhere in the world besides where you now reside, where would it be?
A – I have always loved to travel and think I would enjoy living in Great Britain. I would like very much to spend at least a summer there one day. I would also love to return to Italy. I often fantasize about a Tuscan Villa!
Q – Do you have a “day job” other than writing? If not currently, what “day jobs” have you had in the past?
A – In my “former life” I was a travel agent for five years, worked for Continental airlines for three years and then went into diagnostic medical imaging for sixteen years. I have been writing full time since December 2010.
Q – What hobbies or pastimes do you partake in to relax?
A – Of course I love to read, but I also enjoy riding my horse, walking my dog, and playing the Celtic harp.
Q – Do you have any favorite TV shows?
A – I almost never watch TV but have been looking forward to the Outlander series.
Q – What kind of movies do you like to watch? Can you name your favorite movies of all time?
A – I love epic stories and period dramas. My favorite films are: Last of the Mohicans, Gladiator, Braveheart, and Gone with the Wind. I also adore the outrageous 2005 adaptation of Shakespeare’s Taming of the Shrew (Shakespeare re-told) starring Shirley Henderson and Rufus Sewell.
Q – Do you have a favorite place you have traveled to? Or perhaps a place you long to visit?
A – My hubby and I traveled to Italy in the early eighties. I would love to return.
Q – If you could meet any person living or dead, who would it be and why?
A – WOW. Very tough question! Maybe Thomas Jefferson? He was a true “renaissance man” and the president I most admire. If you asked which author I would most like to meet it would probably be Georgette Heyer or E.M. Hull.
Q – You are forced to live on a desert island for six months. Food and bare survival equipment will be provided but that is all. You can take one person and five items to relieve the boredom and enhance the experience. Who is the person and what are the items? Why?
A – Ooh! I could be so very naughty with this one! Since I love my creature comforts and my darling hubby has no survival skills whatsoever, I would have to choose Bear Grylls as my companion (He’s much better looking than survivor man Les Stroud). As for items, I would take my bed, books, pen and paper (since I have nothing to power a laptop) and chocolate.
What a blast! Now I know Victoria even better! Thanks for joining me today, Victoria, and for answering my silly questions.
Everyone, be sure to comment, and share this interview with others. One lucky winner will be chosen this weekend and notified by email.
And mark your calendars for November when Victoria Vane will return with more Q&A, an excerpt, and release celebrating of SLOW HAND, Hot Cowboy Nights #1