Today we're getting to know a little more about historical author Heidi Hamburg.
1) What genre(s) do you write and what attracts you to that genre?
For the past few years I’ve been writing historical romance, set in the Regency period. This may have something to do with the way I came to romance.
Years ago I had a winter when the only thing I read for fun was British-set murder mysteries.
|Author Heidi Hamburg|
Agatha Christie had been up to the same thing- half a dozen contemporary romances, that, like Jane Austen’s contemporary romances, read like historical romances now. I was hooked, and love them still, as I do so many of the writers of the past twenty years or so who have managed to emulate the originals so well. May I someday be one of them.
2) What’s your writing strength? What do you think separates you from other authors?
I think, and have been told quite often, that my world-building is very strong, that readers feel they are a part of the time and place where the story is set.
I don’t really subscribe to the advice that you must write very dark or very funny or very emotionally charged. I want it all. I like to have a chapter of absolute misery leavened by a good belly-laugh a few pages later. Hey, it worked for Shakespeare. And it works just fine for some of my favourite historical authors. Let’s hope it works for me.
3) What’s your writing kryptonite? What is always tough for you to tackle?
I hate hurting the characters I like. I always have to grit my teeth and just do it. I know perfectly well that if they don’t have obstacles to overcome they won’t grow, like pampered children who never hear “no”. I know that, I believe that, but I still hate it.
4) Do you work with critique partners?
My critique partner and I go in fits and starts, sometimes giving each other big chunks of work to deal with, and then having longish periods of nothing. I also have a couple of beta readers who only look at finished things. One of them never reads romance. She is very strong on story and style, with none of the expectations a romance reader might have. I like that separation.
5) Where are your favourite places to find inspiration for new ideas?
I have no idea- they just come, and flutter around until I do something about them. Often they come as I write, before I even know I need them. Sometimes they arrive in the shower, and I need to scribble fast, damp and towel-bedecked, or the best ones might escape.
6) What piece of advice has stuck with you most since joining RWAC?
Never give up!
7) Can you tell us what you’re working on now?
Oddly, it isn’t romance. A long time ago my grandfather’s friend was lost in the woods for two days during hunting season. I have thought about his experience often over the years. Before Christmas I wrote a short story about a man who is lost, but this is not my grandfather’s friend’s story. The central character has aspects of seven different men. Some are alive and some are gone, but all of them loved that patch of central Nova Scotia woods, no matter how cruel it can be.
Since I wrote it I’ve decided that I want to expand it, so that’s the next project. The camp in the story is based on the one below.