I would like to welcome the lovely Katie Oliver to my blog. Katie has written an interesting guest post about where she gets ideas for her books from.
What do you do when a handsome, sexy film star wants to spend time with you…but you’re already engaged?
Well…you tell him no. Obviously.
And what do you do if an equally handsome lawyer named Darcy warns you to stay away from the sexy film star or risk a broken heart? Do you listen to his advice?
Well…no, you don’t. Just to prove Mr Darcy wrong, you agree to spend a day with the film star, Ciaran Duncan, on a whirlwind tour of Manhattan (strictly for publicity, of course)…and eventually, you find yourself falling for Ciaran.
Even more problematic – what do you do when your fiancé, successful chef Jamie Gordon, is spending more and more time in his restaurant kitchen with his sexy new sous chef, Catherine…and less and less time with you?
If you’re Holly James, you’re facing a decision – and an unavoidable romantic collision.
In Manolos in Manhattan, three men put Holly into an emotional tailspin – her fiancé, Jamie; mouth-wateringly handsome film star, Ciaran; and the disapproving but undeniably attractive lawyer, Mr Darcy. Can Jamie hold on to Holly’s heart? Or will his long hours and inattention curdle their love like a béarnaise sauce gone wrong?
More worrying still – is Ciaran Duncan the perfect man…or a perfect nightmare?
I’m often asked where I get my ideas when I write a book. The answer is…all over the place!
For me, writing a new book begins with a lot of little things. A television program…a character in a murder mystery…an article in a magazine or newspaper…an unhappy teen I notice as I’m hurrying across the airport to my boarding gate. Why is he unhappy? Why is he traveling alone? Where is his family?
Somehow, these disparate odds and ends eventually coalesce into a story.
For instance, for my newest book, Manolos in Manhattan, I knew I wanted to write about a sexy film star who sweeps Holly off her feet. First, I had to figure out why she was in Manhattan. With her fiancé, Jamie, opening a new restaurant midtown, it made perfect sense that Holly would come along. Her stint at BritTEEN magazine is over; so she offers to help her father launch the first US Dashwood and James store.
Natalie and Rhys Gordon are in New York as well, as Rhys prepares to launch the new store in Greenwich Village. With her husband so busy, Natalie feels a little neglected. She adores Manhattan…but has far too much time on her hands. There are only so many baby clothes, prams, and paraphernalia an expectant mum can buy, after all.
Okay – so far, so good. But the book needed something more. That’s when I remembered a ghost story I wrote several years ago called “Finding Daisy.” I had so much fun writing it and I really loved the character of the intrepid 1920s flapper, Daisy Drayer. But, alas, my publishers felt that a ghost story didn’t fit in with the series of Mr Darcy books I was writing at the time, so – reluctantly – I shelved it.
“Finding Daisy” took place in Manhattan. It featured a couple of the same characters, Holly and Jamie, and could easily be incorporated into the new book. So I ditched Daisy’s ghost and instead told her story through a sheaf of old letters that Holly finds, along with a portrait of the flapper, hidden in the eaves of Dashwood and James’s attic.
Now I was getting somewhere. I had an interesting tale to tell, with a solid plot, a good mix of characters, and an intriguing 1920s murder mystery for Holly to solve.
And to make things even more interesting, Ian Clarkson, the baddie from Prada and Prejudice, pops up in Manhattan to menace poor Natalie once again.
So there you have it. My books are a patchwork quilt of ideas – impressions, observations, things I’ve read, films I’ve seen, and interesting facts I’ve stored away in my brain or scribbled in a notebook. I’m not struck by a thunderbolt from on high, nor do plots fall into my lap in a neat little package. (That would be very nice, though.) It’s a matter of sifting through all of the things that catch my interest and finding a way to turn them into a captivating story.
Actually, I just got an idea for a new book. Come and sit down, and I’ll tell you all about it…
She’s a fiancée of good fortune…
Strutting down Park Avenue in her new Manolos, Holly James looks like a woman who has it all. But beneath the Prada sunglasses, Holly has a mounting list of decidedly unfabulous problems. Right at the top? The fact that since her fiancé Jamie started spending all his time at his new restaurant (with his impossibly gorgeous sous-chef!), Holly has practically forgotten what he looks like…and started to feel a teensy bit paranoid.
…but has Holly found the right Mr Darcy?
So being kissed by film star Ciaran Duncan should have been a much-needed boost to Holly’s ego. But losing herself in the moment is impossible, since she’s still fuming after meeting English lawyer Hugh Darcy. He’s easily the most arrogant man in Manhattan and she’s engaged to be married…so why can’t Holly stop imagining kissing him? Suddenly, Holly finds herself torn between three eligible bachelors…and it’s proving more difficult than choosing between a Manolo Blanik and a Jimmy Choo – especially since men are non-refundable! What’s a New York fashionista to do?
Facebook Author Page: http://www.facebook.com/KatieOliverWriter
Amazon Author Page: http://www.amazon.com/author/katieoliver