Friday, January 28, 2011

FRIEND FRIDAY: JENNY SCHWARTZ

             Djinn and angels, angels and djinn. My guest today is Carina Press author, Jenny Schwartz, author of delightful paranormal novellas and master world-builder. Check out her "Out of the Bottle" series for Carina Press: The Price of Freedom, Angel Thief and, coming May 23, Three Wishes.

             Jenny is also a thoughtful blogger with great ideas.  You can read her take on the Gothic Romance Heroine updated at eHarlequin.com Community. It's well worth it!

             Jenny's got some ideas about the next great thing. I'm pleased to have her as today's blog guest, so you can hear all about them!

             Here's Jenny:


I predict disaster.

No, don’t head for the hills yet. You haven’t heard why I’m making this grand prediction.

As a long-time romance and fantasy reader, I’m very happy writing paranormal romance, but I can’t help wondering what the next-big-thing will be in the romance genre. Vampires might be immortal, but they can’t lead the hit parade forever. So what, or who, will take their place?

*crystal ball gazing*

It all begins with the alpha hero.

Alpha heroes have to be lassoed and tamed by love. Now, what situation would put an alpha hero on a pedestal of unattainability (which is great for story conflict!)?

Vampires have immortality, blood-sucking and that inconvenient habit of turning to dust in sunlight. Soldiers go to war. Surgeons are busy saving lives. With all these traditional romance alpha heroes, love has to battle for their attention.

So here’s my prediction of the new battle: DISASTERS

Ahem. I apologise for shouting.

Who else remembers the Mad Max movies of the 1980s. They were made at a time of economic gloominess. Sound familiar?

Currently we have the hangover of the great financial crisis. We have climate change and its associated increased-intensity weather events. We have wars and dictatorships. And lurking at the end of the calendar, we have 2012, the End of Time according to the Mayans.

We are in a situation where people/readers have expectations of disaster. The romance genre will pick up and reflect back those fears, and do what it does best: Provide a happy ending.

Because in a disaster situation, alpha heroes rock.

A disaster subgenre in romance will sell because it promises that when the worst happens, survival and happiness are possible. Love still triumphs. Values are starkly revealed: loyalty to friends, personal honour, self-sacrifice.

Samhain Publishing currently has a call out for Post-Apocalyptic novellas (http://www.samhainpublishing.com/submissions), but I imagine other publishing houses will pick up the disaster theme and run with it in different forms. It doesn’t have to be science fiction or tinged with the paranormal. I could see a medical slant with disaster response units or romantic suspense in the chaos of military disaster.

So there you go. Taryn nicely lets me come and visit, and I start screaming, “disaster”. Sorry, Taryn. But you heard it here first: I predict disaster.

I wonder what they’ll call the new subgenre?

***
Angel Thief is available from Carina Press

She’s breaking the rules. Again.

An archivist in the heavenly library, Sara must follow protocol when it comes to curating the knowledge of the universe. But "liberating" an ancient text from the collection of a human—an Australian drug lord—could save a boy’s life. Sara has no way of knowing that one of the man’s other treasures is a sexy-as-sin djinni, bound by a wish to guard the estate.

He’s only following orders.

Filip is compelled to turn over intruders, even celestial ones, to his master. When he catches Sara in the library, he isn’t above indulging in some sensual kisses with her, or using her to trick the mobster into wasting a wish. It’s what he must do to preserve his facade of freedom and protect his heart.

But the kidnapping of the drug lord’s daughter forces Sara and Filip to work together—bringing out the hero that lurks within the soul of the djinni, and the passion within the angel.
***

You can find Jenny:

At her website http://www.blogger.com/goog_988730720

Blogging at  http://www.acquiring-magic.blogspot.com/

Or on Twitter: http://twitter.com/jenny_schwartz

20 comments:

Liz Fichera said...

Disaster romance? Has a nice ring to it. ;-)

Taryn Kincaid said...

Hey, if we can have disaster movies (all those Days After, Towering Infernos, Poseidon Adventures, Outbreaks) why not disaster romance?

Thanks for being my guest blogger, Jenny! And thanks for stopping by, Liz!

heatherthurmeier said...

I think Jenny's right. There is a big movement to dystopian novels in all genres, romance shouldn't be any different. Everyone is worried about what our future holds, so it's nice to believe that even in dark days, people will still come together and fall in love. Post-apocalyptic romance just makes sense!

Eleri Stone said...

I would read a post-apoc romance. What else you got in that crystal ball Jenny?

Caridad Pineiro said...

Thanks for the prediction! I love those kinds of stories. Your release sounds great and I can't wait to read it.

Jennifer Probst said...

I think that's a great prediction. I agree about the alpha males - this is where they can shine and I LOVE my alpha males! Your story sounds great - really enjoyed your post.

Janni Nell said...

Interesting ideas, Jenny. I've always enjoyed a good post-apocalyptic story.
LOL Liz. Disaster romance. (I'll be chuckling all day over that.)

JL Walters said...

Interesting idea and perhaps one that will take off. Enjoyed your post.

Jenny Schwartz said...

I feel like I'm living the lead-up to disaster at the moment -- nothing serious, I hope -- we have a cyclone (hurricane) coming down the coast and in front of it the weather is hot, humid and awful. I just hope when the storm comes inland, there's no damage. But the oppressive weather has sure scattered my thoughts.

Thanks for your comments, everyone. They've made my morning. And thanks, Taryn, for letting me post at your blog -- and so disastrously, too ;)

Taryn Kincaid said...

Interesting comments, ladies. I'm currently imagining a plague of frogs, requiring the plucky but beleaguered heroine to kiss her way to her prince.
Thanks for getting that disaster idea rolling, Jenny!
You never know when a little snowball (that's the current disaster around here)will spark an avalanche!

Kylie Griffin said...

Post-apocalyptic romances are already appearing on bookshelves. And they're brilliant reads (totally biased here, I'm afraid *grin*)

* Joss Ware's (aka Colleen Gleason) The Envy Chronicles series (Abandon the Night, Embrace the Night Eternal, Abandon the Night, Night Betrayed)

* Jessica Anderson's The Novels of the Final Prophesy series (Night Keepers, Dawn Keepers, Sky Keepers, Demon Keepers, Blood Spells)

* Eve Kenin aka Eve Silver (Driven, Hidden)

* Michelle Maddox (Countdown)

*Katherine Allred (Close Encounters, Close Contact)

* Jory Strong (Ghostland)

They're just a few appearing over the last few years.

I'm looking forward to seeing what else eventuates because it has such a wide scope.

Patricia Preston said...

We've had it made in this country for a century and even more so since the 50's. So, it's time and it is scary to think about that.

Liz said...

I think you are right.
and I LOVE the cover or your book!

Jenny Schwartz said...

Taryn -- a plague of frogs! I laughed, then ewwed. Is Prince Charming worth it?

Kylie -- thanks for the fantastic recs. I think you're right, this subgenre could go anywhere!

Patricia -- it does seem there's a general sense in the air that the good times are ending/over.

Liz -- isn't the cover the best? It captures the romance of Australia's Outback. Monica (ugh, I can't remember the spelling of her last name...) from Spin Studio is responsible.

Maria Zannini said...

Ha! Sick minds think alike, Jenny.

I wrote Touch Of Fire, a post-apocalyptic romance back in 2008. The sequel, Apocalypse Rising comes out this May. Just in time for all the great end-of-the-world parties. Woo hoo!

I love apocalyptic stories!

Maria Zannini said...

And bad maria for not saying hi to Taryn first. Hi darlin'. Nice to be here.

Taryn Kincaid said...

Welcome! And thanks for playing!

Taryn Kincaid said...

And...not that the good old, bad old days were anything to write home about (I happen to think we are living in the best of times...where would I be without my Kindle, my Blackberry, my DVR...)but I wonder if, along with post-apoca stories (which are not always my cuppa, I admit)we might see the resurgence of historicals? To let readers look back, with a gauzy, rose-colored eye, to times we envision as...safer?

Shoshanna Evers said...

Oh this made my day, since I just wrote an erotic romance set in post-apocalyptic NYC, lol! It's too long for Samhain's call for novellas since it's full length, so I'm going to try and find an agent with... I *really* hope your prediction comes true! :D

Great excerpt and post!

Jenny Schwartz said...

Maria -- "sick" minds? I'm going with the cover story, "inquiring minds want to know". I think authors really can't help thinking, what if? and apocalyptic situations are huge what ifs.

Taryn -- I'm reading "London" by Peter Ackroyd and the social history of that city convinces me that today really is pretty good, compared to what's gone before. A third of the population lost to plague? Now, that's apocalyptic! But what you're saying about historical romances is totally true. Despite reading about all the negative aspects of London history, it's still coloured by romance! Very escapist/reassuring.

Shoshanna -- Post-apoc NYC sounds great! I love how landmarks places and buildings can be woven into the devastated setting/story. Good luck!!! with the agent hunt :)

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