Meet My Muse with Virginia Taylor
From the time I began reading I searched for books with happy endings. It took me quite a while to discover Romance but when I did I was hooked. The day came when I could read faster than I could find books I wanted to read.
This led me to write my first historical romance or, as we say, this led to my muse.
My recent release, Starling, picked up by Kensington Books, is the first of an Australian series of three called South Landers. Starling was released last month and is available from:
The same muse swept me to the next book. And the next…etc, because I had conceived in my mind the idea of writing a series of stories about the first generation born after settlement in the new colony of South Australia. I plan to move to the second generation, moving the stories from 1860 to 1890.
My publishing journey came much later than my muse, but did finally halt a couple of years ago, when I had two romcoms published by Random Romance.
However, historical romance is my first love and I have always snatched up stories set in Regency England, Georgian England, Victorian England, France, Egypt, and Ancient Rome, though I preferred those set in the USA. Varying the settings adds freshness to the genre, or so my musing muse said when I decided to set my stories in my own state.
Just the other day I was reminded that the title character in the first of the series evolved when a brown-eyed writer friend dolefully said no one ever used a brown-eyed heroine in romance. Neither had I, through pure laziness, I suspect. Being born a blue-eyed blonde, I used colouring familiar to me for my heroines. And so, challenged, I began to develop Birdie, the orphan who wanted to run her own business.
I changed her name one day when I was looking out the window and saying idly to my husband, “Those starlings on the lawn are so ordinary when you compare them to all our beautiful native birds.”
And he said, “I think they’re rather beautiful. When they move, you can see the glimmer on their wings.”
This was quite a romantic statement from a man I didn’t think had literary leanings. With those words, he gave me Starling, my heroine, a plain, quiet, brown-eyed woman until the man who has hired her to pretend to be his wife sees the glimmer on her wings. She is one of my favourite heroines because she is possibly someone I would like to be, thoughtful, generous, practical, and determined.
The second in the series, Ella, is available by preorder from Kensington.
The third, Charlotte, is on edit row. The fourth is at this time still slowly unfurling on my computer. Slowly is the keyword there, sadly. I’ve discovered that knowing the ending to a story isn’t quite as helpful in writing it as I might have hoped.