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Read an excerpt from Return to Love
About Denysé Bridger
Canadian born and bred, and a lifelong dreamer, I began writing at an early age and can’t recall a time when I wasn’t creating in some artistic form. My life has had several on-going love affairs that shape much of what I write, the American West, Victorian England, cowboys, a passion for pirates, Greek Gods, and Ancient Egypt. The other endless love affair in my life is Italia and all its magic, beauty, and dazzling culture. That passion spills into all aspects of my life.
My first major fantasy novel is AS FATE DECREES. (Available in bookstores everywhere, and on Amazon’s international sites.) The novel relies heavily on Greek Mythology, and is set in Ancient Greece and modern Athens. If you enjoy a tale of Gods, Destiny, and the battles of an Eternal Champion, this is the book for you! (Less than six months after publication, it was a finalist for the 2008 Aurora Award.) Not surprisingly, there’s a touch of romance throughout, of course!
In the past half dozen years, I’ve signed with over a dozen publishers, and have released books in all lengths and genres, and it’s something I hope to continue to do for many more years. A visit to my website will show the diversity of what is currently available, and the mixing of genres and styles that will be employed in many up-coming projects as well. (All my social site links, etc., are on the About Me page.)
Also by Denysé Bridger
An Interview with Denysé Bridger
By Holly Hewson for The Romance Studio
HH: Denysé, thank you so much for talking with us at TRS. Your featured book is Return to Love. Where did the idea for this thrillingly unique story?
DB: Thanks so much for having me here today to chat with everyone. I’ve always enjoying reading and writing historical westerns, the genre has been a favourite of mine since I was a child. The idea for this short story was born from my love of the television series Lonesome Dove. This is a look at something that could be much, much longer, and I hope next year I’ll be able to perhaps write the novel that this story hints at.
HH: What do you like about his love and what's her greatest strength?
DB: Amber is a strong woman who has been through one of the worse nightmares any woman can survive. Her greatest strength is her love for Clay, she does what is needed for them, despite his objections and her own desire to be with him, she chooses to leave him. Months later, better able to face the past, she returns. Clay, for his part, welcomes her back, but makes it clear he won’t watch her walk away again.
HH: What do you like best about Clay and what makes him different than most heroes?
DB: Clay Butler is a good man who’s survived the Civil War, but like so many, lost everything his family had build. He is well-educated, elegantly mannered, but the war has left darkness in his soul. He’s become a ruthless and driven man who will do anything to protect what he’s gained back. He all but rules the town in Montana when he has settled, and falling in love was never in his plans. Losing that love has left him vulnerable in ways he abhors, and he’s wondering if he really even wants to go on.
I think Clay is a complex hero, and when we meet him in the opening of the story, we’re allowed to see his weakness at war with his strength as he weighs what his life has become without Amber. I believe love brings out the truest strengths in people, and in this case, Clay’s heart is where his greatest strength lives, so when his lady returns to him, his entire world shifts back to where he wants and needs it to be.
HH: How did you go about creating the world where their story takes place?
DB: The American West is a richly documented place, and one I am familiar with after many years writing books set there. Creating the small town was easy, and giving it the feel of the era is relatively simple for a short story. With a novel, I actually map the town, the businesses, and get a proper feel for the place in my mind. I’ve got one set up now for a town called Gold Ridge, and I hope I’ll get that novel done in the coming year. Right now I have a map of the town, the businesses are named, and even the owners have names and history.
HH: What did you enjoy most about writing this story?
DB: I always enjoy getting into the past, for some reason it’s more real than the present often is when I’m writing. Creating something that stands alone, yet can be an introduction to a much larger world is always challenging and fun, too. I also love the two main characters and see so much potential for them, as well.
HH: What else do you have in store for lucky readers?
DB: I’m finishing up several projects at the moment, and with luck next year will see fewer releases, but novel-length stories rather than shorter pieces. That’s the plan at any rate. I have three new paranormal/fantasy themed books in the works, a new historical, and a few novella-length contemporary tales, as well. I don’t think there will ever be enough time to really write all the stories I want to tell! I have notebooks filled with outlines and notes about characters, so there’s no chance of running out of things to write!
HH: What are you most excited about in your career right now?
DB: There are a number of exciting things going on right now, and most of them will be coming into play for next year. I’m going to focus on several new novels that I am really excited about, two of them are paranormals, one involving vampires that is set in Italy, and a second one involving gargoyles that is set partly in a mythical place, deep in Sicily. I hadn’t consciously realized it until recently but three of the novels for 2013 are set in Italy, as well as my debut werewolf tale. I’ve also got novellas planned, but for the most part next year will see fewer releases, but the ones that will be out are going to be full-length books instead of short stories.
HH: What are you looking forward to most in the rest of 2012?
DB: Mostly I’m looking forward to getting the current things finished to start fresh in the new year. At the moment I’m frantically writing the end of a story that will be published as part of a holiday duet called Silver Bells -- and there is a really special promotion already setup for that one, we’ll be giving away the silver bell earrings that are the common bond in the two stories. They’re a handcrafted set of lovely earrings, and I think whoever wins them will be very happy with them. Also, I’m in edits for my next Ellora’s Cave release, which is a Halloween themed thriller, but I hope readers will find it fun at any time of year! I’ve also got a djinn story almost ready to be sent to my editor at New Dawning. There’s only a month left and a LOT to be done!!
HH: What are you reading at the moment?
DB: At the moment I’m reading the last books of the Midnight Breed series, I really LOVE them. I’ve got a couple of Lucy Monroe titles on my table, as well as the newest novels from Kristen Painter, Cynthia Garner, and Kristina Douglas. I want to start JR Ward’s Angel series, too. I’m still finishing up the Mortal Instruments set, too. One of the best sets of books I’ve read this year were Zandria Munson’s gargoyle romances, they were awesome!! I still have the newest Gena Showalter title to read, too. So, LOTS of variety!!
HH: Do you have a writing hero and if so, who would it be?
DB: I kind of have two writing heroes. Sir Arthur Conan Doyle has always been an inspiration, his Sherlock Holmes stories have taught me a lot about small detail and logical progression of a plot. For straight on romance that makes me smile, it’s got to be Lucy Monroe every time. Lucy writes love stories in a way that makes you adore her heroes every time. Margaret Mitchell is another hero Gone With The Wind is timeless, and it is romance on an epic scale, encompassing so much history and richness of passion. These are the people I never tire of reading.
Thank you so much for allowing me the opportunity to chat again with the wonderful readers here at TRS. Happy Holidays to everyone, and here’s to a fabulous coming year for all!!
HH: Thank you!