I got the Valentine's post, I got the Valentine's post, neener, neener ,neener. Okay and like everything I ever seek and eventually obtain, I don't know what the hell to do with it! So I'm turning the coveted V-day post over to guest blogger and fellow SFR writer Frances Pauli who will thrill and delight you all with talk of one of my all time favorite movies! Take it away, Frances!
I always say I’m a sucker for a happy ending, and in the romance genre that’s never a bad thing. Still, when I think about it, it’s about more than just that happily-ever-after. I mean, happily ever after on its own won’t work. Not for me. Not unless there’s a heavy dose of “true love” attached.
A romance heroine doesn’t just need to end up with someone forever. She needs to end up with the right someone. That’s the ticket for me. That’s the part that gives me shivers.
Take our title, and let’s consider the Princess Bride for a moment. When Buttercup and Humperdink are married, and the priest says, “man and wife,” I am right there with that outraged kid. “Wait a minute, Grandpa. You’re messing up the whole story.” Because it can’t happen that way, can it? It doesn’t take long for us to sort out who should be with whom. We’re savvy that way. “She can’t marry Humperdink. It’s just not right.” We know. We know who she’s supposed to marry. Twuu--true love.
I may be alone in this, but deep down, I almost prefer an un-happy ever after to an ever after with the wrong guy. In fiction, at least, I like my lovers paired properly and permanently. Love triangles give me the willies. I know, I know. A lot of readers like them. They build tension, yes. They also give me anxiety. I feel like that young version of Fred Savage again. “Wait a minute! You’re messing up my—er—your whole story.”
As an author, in particular of a trilogy, it can take me a little while to get to the happily ever after. It can take three books, in fact. Since I’m shooting for a longer series in the future, it could take more. But rest assured, when I get there, the ever-after will be the right one. With the Changeling Race, I never doubted who that would be, but a few of my beta readers did.
I might have messed with them a little. Because, while I was right there shouting, “hang on, she doesn’t marry him,” I still really loved that movie. So maybe, I’m guilty of a little anxiety-inducing as well. I’m a sucker for true love, but I never said it had to be easy.
What about the rest of the readers and movie watchers out there? Do you decide up front who’s the true, true love? If the author veers from the program, do you smile knowingly? Or like me, do you reach for the Xanax and pray they’re just messing with you?
I am offering a free pdf of any book from my backlist to one commenter today, and for each stop on the tour that you comment on, you will earn one entry into the final drawing for print copies of all three books. Follow along and enter to win!
A Moth in Darkness
The boundaries between the worlds have fallen. Forced to integrate the creatures of fantasy into real life, humanity struggles against its disillusionment, prejudice and an inevitable feeling of inadequacy.
Once an agent for the embassy that mediates between the worlds, Elizabeth Larson has abandoned her past and slipped into a world of nostalgic addiction to fairy revels, dancing, and the dark lure of her own memories. But when Lockland Sheen, her former partner and lover, goes missing, she is pulled reluctantly back into service. She must venture once more across the borders, into the land that haunts her, facing a string of gruesome murders, the imposing Sidhe rulers and her own addiction in the process.
While the Embassy’s agents attempt to soothe tensions between the races, Liz and her new partner search the fairy realm for Lockland. Fighting the constant temptation of the revels, they piece together the trail of an unknown enemy. But the longer they follow it, the more it appears that the man they came to rescue is more villain than victim. And the more they rely on Elizabeth’s ties to the fairies, the closer she inches toward the madness that lurks behind her fantasies.
Something’s rotten in the Fey lands. While Marcus Bramble tracks the lunatic who started it all, Elizabeth and the crew at the Embassy sort through the evidence he left behind. With Lockland back, and the revels behind her, Liz’s world is slowly returning to normal. But on both sides of the borders, shadow creatures spring out of nowhere, and the dark legends surrounding the fey take on a whole new meaning.
Now time is against them. On the mortal side of things, protesters rally to close the borders, politicians descend on the Embassy, and something that shouldn’t exist stalks Elizabeth through the city.
In his world, Marcus faces a madman with answers he doesn’t want to hear. The Fey rulers turn a blind eye on forests teeming with imaginary monsters, and the Sidhe tower stands silent amidst the chaos. Will the race to uncover its secrets solve the mystery of the elves’ past or unleash even more horrors on them all?
Liz Larson holds the last remnant of the Seelie Sidhe's power. The elves look to her for guidance, but all she has to offer them is the disturbing story of their origin, the final truth that will turn many of them against her. With her dwindling number of allies, Liz needs to reopen the borders, to find the missing Marcus Bramble, and to avoid the sudden, terrifiying attention of the new Fey ruler, the Unseelie Speaker and new master of the Sidhe Tower.
While her friends in Mundanity race to pry open the gates, and Marcus searches for the answer to a puzzle that could save or damn them all, the Unseelie Speaker marches north, bringing his army and his wrath to focus on Elizabeth. What can one, fairy-touched human do in the face of the Unseelie court's full fury? How can she fight when the enemy's anger is only partly blind, when she can see all too clearly the traces of justice behind it?
Frances Pauli writes speculative fiction with romantic touches. Her books are published through Mundania Press LLC, Awe-Struck, and Devine Destinies, and her short stories are featured in various anthologies. More information on her worlds and writing can be found on her website and blog, and she offers free online stories, web serials, podcasts there as well.