Writer of historical and contemporary romance, today Linda is giving us some insight into her October 2013 release, REKINDLED DREAMS.
Set in a small Montana town, this contemporary romance sees a museum curator getting up close and personal with her teenage crush.
Giveaway – An ARC of REKINDLED DREAMS to one lucky commentator.
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LINDA CAROLL-BRADD on the story behind REKINDLED DREAMS:
My contemporary story, Rekindled Dreams, has taken a winding road to completion. When I first started writing this novel, I worked fulltime and had three children with various school activities and homework. So I researched and wrote in small stolen moments, usually longhand in a notebook and when everyone was asleep. I envisioned the heroine being a romance author who had writer’s block and returns to her childhood hometown for the nurturing it always provided. At first, the hero’s profession was a legislative aide to a state representative. I wanted him to be involved with the history of the state.
An urban girl through and through, I wanted to set the story in a town I’d only read about—one with a population of less than 2,000 where people had lived for generations and their memories were almost as long. These were the books I loved to read (and the TV shows I watched). So I researched Montana, a state I’d only visited once as a child—by reading the Federal Report on the State. This is a dry, factual accounting of the region—including the initial encounters with the original Native American tribes, settlers, mineral strikes, grains grown where, population rises and falls, etc. Lots of facts that gave me a picture of the area without actually seeing it. In the initial stages of plotting and writing, personal computers were growing into widespread use and cell phones were only for emergencies. But the travel guides published by the Automobile Association of America were great for local historical tidbits and pictures.
After writing more than 50% of the story, I joined a critique group and shared my first chapter. I was informed by a multi-published author that publishing houses didn’t buy stories about writers and that a hero should never be anyone’s assistant. Deflated, I drove home in tears and vowed to toss away the whole story. After about a week, the characters nagged at me and I wanted to return to that group with new pages. If I was really a writer (obviously I was just learning how much I wanted to write), I could do this.
So I redrafted both of the main characters’ professions. Vena’s job as curatorial assistant was chosen so writing was still an element of the story but in a different way. In order to keep the scenes involving a writer’s inspiration, I made Vena’s best friend a writer who shared her tips. Finn’s profession changed to a lobbyist who is being encouraged to run for state representative, and he has a grandfather who was active in early Montana government. Plus I went much deeper into their individual family histories to learn how Vena and Finn came to be the adults they are when they meet again after a decade of separation. Toss in a gossipy circle of senior citizen ladies, matchmakers, and a pretend engagement and my contemporary romantic comedy, Rekindled Dreams, became a full-realized novel.
When museum curator Vena Fenton returns to her small Montana hometown, she’s forced to live under the same roof as Finnian Quaid, the star of more than one teenage fantasy. Finnian is now an environmental lobbyist, making a bid for senate, and is as dreamy as ever.
Finnian needs a more settled image if he wants to get ahead in the polls. In order to do that, he needs a wife. With Vena living under his roof, his problem seems solved. As the romantic sparks fly, there’s more at risk than Finnian’s political aspirations. Can they keep their eye on the prize, or will their growing love derail them both?
As a child, Linda Carroll-Bradd was often found lying on her bed reading about characters having exciting adventures in places far away.
Upon reaching a landmark birthday, she decided to write one of those romances she loved so much. Easier said than done. Perseverance paid out and twelve years later, she received her first call from a publisher and a confession story was published.
Now Linda writes heartwarming contemporary and historical stories with a touch of humor, and many have a tie to her previous home of Texas.
Linda enjoys writing from her cabin in the mountains among the cedar and pines with her husband of 34 years and their two much-loved dogs.
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