Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Crimson Authors Break the Rules, Too!

This week my contemporary romance, BREAKING THE RULES, has been released! In honor of this, I've asked some author friends to answer two questions: 

How did you break the rules? How has your character broken the rules?

Find answers below from some of my fellow Crimson Romance authors. Check back in two days for more responses!

ME! Melinda Dozier, Author of Breaking the Rules
How did I break the rules? 
This is a tough one, because I am a rule follower, just like my character Hope. In fact, I'm a sixth grade teacher and rules are very important in my life -- otherwise I'd end up in a looney house. But, I did break the rules when I was a teenager. I wasn't too bad --  really. In 10th grade, I was signed up for Typing class. Typing? Really? With those old-fashioned type writers and all. I found it pointless, so I skipped class. ALL THE TIME. Unfortunately, my parents got a truancy notice in the mail and I had to come clean. Luckily, it was taken care of and I am one damn good typer!

How did my characters break the rules? 
When you read Breaking the Rules, you'll see that Hope and Colin have to decide to bend the rules a little in order to continue their relationship. Hope is the strict, uptight middle school principal and Colin's eleven-year-old falls into some trouble. After their attraction builds, Hope has to come to terms with her feelings for Colin and the ethics behind dating a student's father. Luckily, Colin's charm and ease tempts Hope into following her heart instead of her rules. You'll have to read to find out how!

Micah Persell, Author Of Consuming Fire (RELEASED YESTERDAY AND I LOVED THIS BOOK!)
How did I break the rules?
When I was in college, I toured two summers with a traveling music group of 5-8 members to fulfill some of the requirements of my music scholarship. There was a strict no-dating rule on these tours; we even had to sign a statement saying we would not engage in a romantic relationship with one of our fellow musicians.  Alas, I am a sucker for a deep voice, and both summers, I ended up falling for the basses of the groups. Clandestine relationships are pretty exciting, especially when you're a college kid.  Unlike the heroine of Breaking the Rules, who also engaged in a clandestine relationship, I did not find true love. My romances ended pretty quickly after the tours, but they were sure fun while they lasted!
How has my character broken the rules?
I love characters who break the rules.  In my paranormal series, Operation: Middle of the Garden, I have a rule-breaker in every book.  The heroine of Of Eternal Life, Dr. Abilene Miller, breaks the rules by falling in love with her patient.  In book two, Of the Knowledge of Good and Evil, my heroine Dahlia breaks pretty much every rule--and law--she can; she likes it that way.   And in Of Consuming Fire, my latest release, my angel, Jayden, breaks the one and only rule that governs angels and ends up Falling.  

Rock HerRachel Cross, Author of Rock Her
How did I break the rules?
Obviously I haven't broken enough rules, since I've passed two pre-employment polygraphs for public safety jobs in the past twenty years. However, I may have broken every unwritten rule for career satisfaction and advancement known to mankind. I've changed jobs a half-dozen times; left a lucrative career to take a volunteer gig and given up a phenomenally fun job to take a miserably boring position. I've failed and been unhappy in more than one occupation but I've been successful and found my passion too many times to count. The latest one is a writing gig and it's a keeper.

How did your character break the rules? 
Alec Sawyer was rock music’s most infamous guitarist. His past was an excess of everything: drugs, parties, rock, sex, and money. His downfall had been long, spectacular, and public. Eventually, he picked himself up, got sober, went back to college and law school and now follows all the rules as an attorney. But love doesn't follow rules, and sometimes you have to take that leap of faith.

Leslie P. Garcia, Author of Unattainable
How have you broken the rules? 
I broke rules by falling in love with an illegal alien which got me kicked out of my family by my father (shades of Unattainable except that I'm not an heiress ;) ).

How has your character broken the rules? 
As far as my character, Jovi Trevino breaks rules by falling in love with the woman he's investigating.  Not original, but it can be deadly!


Christine Feldman, Author of The Bargain
How do you break the rules?
Normally, I do not break rules.  In fact, I'm rather tightly wound, which naturally makes me the life of every party.  (Not.)  But I am breaking the rules now in a big way by taking a huge plunge:  I'm taking a leave of absence from my day job--which provides steady pay and security--in order to pursue my lifelong dream of writing, which does NOT offer steady pay or security unless you're J.K. Rowling.  (And I am not, as you may have already guessed, J.K. Rowling or even a distant relation.)  Does this qualify as breaking the rules?  Not written rules, but sometimes the expectations placed on you by society sure feel a lot like rules, and some of those need to be broken in order to see just exactly what you're capable of doing after all.

How has your character broken the rules?
In The Bargain, Shannon Mahoney isn't exactly someone you'd call a rule breaker.  In fact, this particular tomboy is more of an awkward wallflower, especially when it comes to matters of the heart and the opposite sex.  But in the end, she does break free from certain things holding her back and makes a very bold move that defies the expectations of everyone who knows her--but I can't tell you anything more about it here because it will spoil the ending.  Can't have that!

JM Stewart, Author of Her Knight in Black Leather
How do you / did you break the rules?

--hahahaha. I have to laugh at this one. For the most part, I don’t. I’m a wanna-be rebel, or you could call me a closet rebel. I tend to rebel at the small stuff. For example, when I was first learning how to write, I was told never ever ever switch POVs mid scene. Guess what was the first thing I wanted to learn how to do? Lol I’m afraid, that’s the type of rules you’ll tend to see me breaking.

How has your character broken the rules? 

I modeled the hero of Her Knight in Black Leather in part after my husband, who really was a bad boy. Michael marches to the beat of his own drummer. He’s broken laws as a teenager. Stealing his father’s car. Smoking. Drinking. Spent more than a few nights in jail for all of it. Typical rebellious teenager stuff. He spent most of his teenage years doing everything he could to piss off his overbearing father. At eighteen, he left home and went off on his own, to prove to his father he didn’t have to be who he demanded him to be.

But mostly, I suppose Michael’s a bit like me. He doesn’t follow the crowd. He does his own thing, so for the most part, he’s a loner. Michael’s the type of guy who doesn’t care what people think of him. He isn’t afraid to be different. When people push, he isn’t afraid to push back. So, when being seen with him puts the heroine, Cat’s life in danger, Michael puts himself in front of her. He wears a black leather jacket and rides a custom motorcycle he built himself. He owns a custom bike shop in L.A rather than working for his father in the family business. So, I guess you could say Michael is more of a rebel than an actual rule breaker. The rules he breaks are more society’s “norms,” what people expect of him. Or tell him he has to be.  

Robyn Neely, Author of Destination Wedding
I broke the rules to see Bon Jovi!
 Working for a major university,  my boss and I did a site visit to our newly opened arena. They were setting up for a sound check, and after a little probing (and flirting with the event director - he didn't see it coming) we found out that Bon Jovi was playing a private concert for some big high tech agency.
 We began to concoct our plan - after all it was Bon Jovi on our turf! During our tour, we decided to leave my keys in one of the suites when the event director wasn't looking. Now I was smart and took my house and car keys off the key ring. Phase 1 in Operation Slippery When Wet was complete.
 That evening, we showed up at the arena. It was soooooo chaotic but as the Living On a Prayer gods were looking down on us, we ran into the director on the crowded street. I immediately went into "I left my car keys in the suite" mode. He bought it hook, line and sinker and escorted us in. Then, I took him to every suite BUT the one that I knew my keys were in.
 He finally gave up and told us to have a good time! We sent him a bottle of wine a couple days later. BEST CONCERT EVER!
How has your character broken the rules?  
In 'Destination Wedding', Wedding Planner Kate Ashby can't keep her lips off her client, so she thinks!


  1. Wow! After reading all the other answers here, I'm thinking I need to go out and break a few more rules! Maybe get a tattoo or something--well, maybe a temporary one... :)

    1. Haha! I thought the same thing. Maybe we can just use those temporary ones with water & a sponge -- then we'll look cool without the pain!

  2. Melinda, great premise for your blog - original and filled with promise for many diverse and interesting answers. I loved reading all of the wonderful answers from my fellow authors. And yes, I've broken a few rules in my life and with my writing. And it has always worked out. :)

  3. What a fun Q&A! Thanks for including me! Congrats on your release, Melinda!

  4. Many of you have heard how I am generally a strict rule follower, but under the influence of rock music and sexy lead singers I have been known to go astray. As my best friend and concert buddy says, "You follow the rules when it suits you." Correction, I follow the rules except when it is really, REALLY important not to. Like when the boys in the band are backstage and I'm not.

    I break the rules when I write, too. When it's important. Like in my newest release, ABANDON ALL HOPE. Usually a romance is over when the hero and heroine get together. But Hope needed more than just Chase to get her happily ever after. My editor balked a little about this, but it was important to me that Hope be complete in and of herself, not just completed by Chase.

  5. Oops! Forgot to add, loved the post! Great idea!

  6. What a fun post, Melinda. As someone who wore a navy blue headband and vest during the hippie era--really--my rule breaking was a departure, but when I do--I guess I really do.

    I wish you lots of success with your new release, Breaking the Rules--know it will do well in a major way! Leslie P. Garcia (in case my WP calls me 'anonymous.'!