Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Off the track and into the bushes - Elizabeth Hoyt

So, I went off the tracks again today.

There I was, happily typing along, minding my own business, secure in the knowledge that I knew exactly what was going to happen next in my manuscript, when zzzzrreeeet! my heroine picked up a straight edge razor. I know. I was thrown for a loop, too. It’s not like I write romantic suspense or even paranormal where a straight edge razor might possibly be a matter of course. Nope. I write historical romance. My heroines are much more likely to pick up a fan, or—push comes to shove—maybe a scone. Definitely not a razor. And what was worse, she was holding it to the hero’s throat.


Up until this point, it had not occurred to me that my heroine might have anger issues with my hero. Really, it hadn’t. I fall into the plotter category of writers. I make lovely little lists about my characters (eye color, hobbies, tics,) I have deep and meaningful discussions with my critic partner about the underlying themes and motives in my books, and I write a detailed, scene by scene outline of my book, all this before ever setting fingers to keyboard. And yet . . .

And yet here my heroine stood on page 123 with a razor against my hero’s throat.

Here’s the really sad part. This isn’t the first time. Well, I guess the razor bit is a first. But the going off the tracks of my carefully plotted book and wandering into the bushes of surprised confusion? Happens with far too much frequency. Have you read my second book, The Leopard Prince? Remember the scene where the heroine invites the hero for an intimate dinner? That was supposed to be a love scene. You probably don’t remember the sex in that scene. That’s because there wasn’t any. My hero refused. Set his heels and absolutely refused to get it on. Still makes me a little irritated when I think about it.

So, the next time you pick up a book and a character makes a really interesting turn and you’re thinking, “Boy, howdy, wasn’t expecting that.” Keep in mind: the author may not have been expecting it either.

I’m off to try and figure out how to get my heroine to put down that razor.



Karen H in NC said...

Well, Elizabeth, you know what they say about best laid plans and that sounds exactly like what happened.

This scene sounds pretty good...would like to hear more.

Lily said...

Elizabeth, very nice post and I am really wanting to read your new book!

peggy said...

your new book looks interesting.
i really enjoy historical romance

Maureen said...

Well, now I want to read it because I am wondering what she's going to do.

Diana Holquist said...

Hey...I just read that scene where Harry storms out. LOVED it!

Of course, now I'm on to the scenes where he doesn't storm out... those too.


Lily said...

Just finished reading it... Loved it :)