Historical romance author Theresa Romain has joined us today to answer five questions about herself, and her stories, that you probably don’t know. Her newest novel, Secrets of a Scandalous Heiress, debuts on January 6th, and her holiday story, A Season for Desire, is out in stores now!
1) How do you pick the names of your Heroes/Heroines? I write Regency-set historical romance, so I need to make sure my characters have names that existed (or plausibly could have existed) in the early 1800s. One way I find names is through contemporary novels—that is, contemporary to the Regency! If a book was written during or before the 1810s, then the characters’ names are ok for the Regency. I also like to skim the names in the crew credits of British-made movies. I’ve come across some surnames I’d never have thought up on my own.
2) Do you celebrate when you finish a book and what you do? Of course I celebrate! I use finishing a book as an excuse not to make dinner, even though I’ve usually been playing the deadline card for the same reason. One of my favorite celebrations is for Mr. R to pick up my favorite takeout on his way home. Then he and I and our daughter watch a movie together, stress- and guilt-free, and I sleep like a drugged person that night. The next day, I start catching up on email, paperwork, and cleaning. That might not sound super-exciting, but I really love being organized. So it’s relaxing for me to get organized, no matter how temporarily.
3) Since romance authors always write about falling in love, when and how did you discover you were in love? Honestly, I didn’t think about it when I was dating my future husband, because I had decided I was NOT going to say the l-word first. But then came a date when Mr. R admitted that he “more than liked me.” He sort of side-eyed me to see if I’d flip out, and when I didn’t, he said he loved me. Out popped my own reply: “I love you, too.” Upon which he told me he didn’t want me to say it just because he had, and I realized that I hadn’t. That I had, in fact, meant every one of those four words.
4) Where do you go for inspiration when the creativity well is running a little dry? I tend to seek out books and movies that don’t seem to have anything to do with writing historical romance. I really enjoy documentaries about how random stuff is made, or Food Network competitions (Chopped! Cutthroat Kitchen!). And I that’s when I pick up nonfiction books that have nothing to do with Regency history. Anything in the Malcolm Gladwell or Bill Bryson vein—bring on the recommendations!
5) What is the most embarrassing song/app on your ipod? I’m pretty unembarrassable when it comes to music by other people; the music library on my computer includes everything from Leadbelly to Lady Gaga. But I would crumple with humiliation if anyone listened to the carols I recorded with the GarageBand software program about 10 years ago. For some reason I thought my grandparents needed a Christmas CD of me singing. In hindsight, I really doubt I was correct about that.