Guest Post

Behind The Scenes of ‘What a Wicked Earl Wants’ by Vicky Dreiling

WAWEW VDWhen Melanie contacted me to blog, she mentioned that WHAT A WICKED EARL WANTS differs from many Regency historical romances in that the story features two mature adults. To be honest, I never thought about it that way. However, I realized that Melanie was right. Since I love to discuss the behind the scenes aspects of my books, I’m thrilled to blog about the book.

The first thing I must confess is that I did not plan Andrew Carrington, the Earl of Bellingham. He first showed up as a minor character in HOW TO RAVISH A RAKE. When he stepped on the metaphorical stage, my arms actually tingled. Bellingham had so much presence that I knew immediately that he would star in my next book. Interestingly, my editor had the same reaction. Some characters just leap to life immediately, and he certainly did.

But, there is another interesting tidbit that goes all the way back to 1996, when I HTRAR VDwrote a Regency historical romance that actually won a lot of contests and finaled in the Golden Heart. Alas, that book, THE DUKE BY DEFAULT, didn’t sell (I was heartbroken). But I salvaged something from that buried treasure: a name. Yes, I decided to metaphorically recycle the name ‘Bellingham.’

Something else you might find interesting is that I am a pantser. That means I do very little plotting. It’s a bit scary to write that way, but it also energizes you, because you’re learning about the characters and the story as you write. I knew Bellingham was a total rake, and I also knew a little bit about his background. He had an early tragedy in his life, one that he buried deep inside. Bellingham is a wounded hero who, to use a modern term, compensates for what he refuses to acknowledge and overcome—that he’s never properly mourned. I knew that an alpha male with these issues would need a special heroine who would stand up to him. That meant the heroine not only had to be mature (age 28), but she also needed wisdom gained from her own experiences with grief.

ASTS VDSo I created Laura Davenport, a widow and vicar’s daughter with a rebellious teenage son. Why a widow and teenage son? Well, all of these characteristics add built-in conflict between Bell and Laura. His values as a rake and ruthless politician are miles apart from Laura’s values. Yet, in so many ways, she is the perfect woman for him, because she had to overcome her own grief after her husband’s death.

Her son, however, is a source of worry and conflict for Laura. She’s in the sprawling metropolis of London for the first time, and her son is associating with wild young men. I thought that many readers would identify with a mother who was having difficulties with her son.

Justin’s character is something of a catalyst in the book in that his rebellious actions actually lead Bellingham to Laura’s townhouse for the first time. I won’t spoil what happens for readers, but I will say that I had an enormous amount of fun writing that scene and many others in the book.

Bellingham has a keen sense about others, but like many of us, not necessarily about himself.  That makes sense, given his issues. He’s an über alpha male who takes over any situation, because he’s so confident of how to resolve problems—for everyone else.  Bell was a fascinating character to write, but he and his friends were also a great source of hilarity. The second book in The Sinful Scoundrels series features Bellingham’s friend, Colin Brockhurst, Earl of Ravenshire and Lady Angeline Brenham.  Their story is loads of fun and is set to publish in March 2014.  Cheers!

Vicky DreilingAUTHOR BIO: Triple Rita®-finalist Vick Dreiling is a confirmed historical romance junkie and Anglophile. Frequent business trips to the UK allowed her to indulge her passion for all things Regency England. Bath, Stonehenge, and Spencer House are among her favorite places. She is, however, truly sorry for accidentally setting off a security alarm in Windsor Castle. That unfortunate incident led her British colleagues to nickname her “Trouble”.  A native Texan, she holds degrees in English literature and marketing.

You can find Vicky on: Website / Twitter / Facebook / Pinterest / Goodreads

28 thoughts on “Behind The Scenes of ‘What a Wicked Earl Wants’ by Vicky Dreiling”

  1. I’m currently reading an ARC of Once Upon A Wallflower by Wendy Lyn Watson. Really enjoying it so far. Very well written & when the hero/heroine are together the page fairly smolders!

  2. Oh, how I love characters that weren’t planned out to have their own books!
    But I’m reading Katharine Ashe’s How to Marry a Highlander and am very much loving it! I’m almost finished and it’s like 3 in the morning here! I just can’t (won’t) stop till I’m done! Oh it’s such a great book and witty with lots of fun characters and love going on~ I want Katharine to write a story for all of them (which they do get their own HEA in this story by the way so, Yay, all I have to do is keep on reading) Ha, but why does it have to be so short! Novellas! 😉

  3. I’m reading Avenging Angel by Cynthia Eden right now. I love Vicky Dreiling’s books. She is a really good historical romance author.
    Anyone know how to get a copy of a Season for Sin?
    I can’t buy it on Amazon it won’t let me.

  4. I am finishing up a review copy of Wicked: A Seven Deadly Sins Novel by Jillian Kleine Der Lowe.
    I love your books. I already have a copy of What A Wicked Earl wants.

  5. Vicky, I love this fascinating insight into your characters and the premise of What a Wicked Earl Wants. I love humour in my historical romances and I’m definitely adding your book to my must-have list!

    I’ve just started reading The Lady and the Laird by Nicola Cornick. It’s the first book in her new The Scottish Brides series.

  6. I have been waiting for Bell’s book for what seems foever!. I knew he’s make a stunning hero just from How to Ravish a Rake, one of my all time favorite romances. I am saving this book for vacation, so I can savor it! I just began Anne Stuart’s To Love a Dark Lord and it’s looking very juicy, what with a murder right on the first page… Tweeted

  7. I’ve just started three different books (paper, Kindle & audio): Darkness Everlasting by Alexandra Ivy, Midnight Awakening by Lara Adrian, and The Edge of Desire by Stephanie Laurens.

    1. OH. MY. GOD. Almost everyone that stops by today is managing 2-3 books at once! WTH? I’m a total looser, man! I just can’t do it! All of these sound great so off I go to search them out 😉

      1. I know, Mel. I’m jealous because I’m on deadline & have to wait to read.
        Thanks everyone for sharing your reads & for the kind words about WHAT A WICKED EARL WANTS. I forgot to mention that I dreamed about this book every single night that I wrote it. It was literally a dream book. 🙂

  8. I’m currently reading The Dom Who Loved Me by Lexi Blake, Shattered by JoAnn Ross, and The Cool Part of His Pillow by Rodney Ross.
    Thanks for that peek of What a Wicked Earl Wants.

    1. I don’t know how you do it! THREE books at once?! How do you do it, I wonder? Do you read each on a diff. days, or some in the evening and some at night? I tried something like that and just couldn’t manage to enjoy them like that!

  9. There are 2 that I’m reading — one which I’m not sure will have any romance — it’s a fantasy–called Raziel’s Shadow by Joseph Robert Lewis. There are moments of ‘maybe’. The second book I’m reading is by Katharine Ashe, In the Arms of a Marquess. It’s a delicious historical romance and if you haven’t read any of her books, you should.

    1. OMG! This month is the first time I’m doing a multiple ‘read’. One is an audio of OUTLANDER [gotta get ready for the STARZ series in March] and the other is Anna Campbell’s ARC of “A Rake’s Midnight Kiss” and I’m not liking it [NO! Not the books but this multi-reading]. I fall asleep on the audio then need to back up to the part I last remembered 🙂 I’m enjoying AC’s book very much and the rev is coming up shortly 😉

      1. I try to read books at the same time that are very dissimilar, that way I can pick up the story line easier when I move between books. I’ll do audio, too. That’s reading when my hands are busy doing something else. But no more than three in different time settings or genry work best.

  10. I’m currently enjoying Nicola Cornick’s latest book, The Lady and the Laird. It’s a Scottish-set Regency which isn’t what I usually read. I love Cornick’s books, though, and this one is no exception. I’m also listening on audio CD to Jillian Hunter’s The Duchess Diaries read by the incomparable Justine Eyre.

  11. I’ve been reading Shana Galen’s Son’s of the Revolution series and am almost finished and loved every bit of it!! I am looking forward to starting another one of her series soon.

    1. OMG! Don’t start me on the SONS! Just LOVED them all and now SG is writing a Dowager’s story! Can’t wait!

  12. We’re do I start lol I read a book maybe two a day. Today I just read rule by Jay Crownover, nothing better a tattooed boyfriend :). Yesterday I read bent by H.B Heinzer, great childhood gets screwed up gets back together story. I haven’t read a historical romance in awhile and looking into yours, Sophia Jordan, and shana Galen’s.

  13. I was hoping Andrew would get his own story and he did! 🙂
    I was one of the ones who was hooked by his presence from the get-go. Vicky, your books always pull me in and grab not only my funny bone but my heart as well.

    Right now I’m reading the Highland Guard series by Monica McCarty and I am loving them all! I recommend them to anyone who loves medieval Scotland.

  14. I’m actually about to reread Sarah Mayberry’s Suddenly You, which is my favorite romance novel ever (so far at least). It’s super romantic, and Mayberry always writes fantastic story lines. I haven’t read a historical romance in awhile, but I’ve been meaning to pick up something by Vicky for quite some time!

  15. Thank you leahluvsmedieval! I’m writing Colin & Angeline’s book now. What a pair LOL. Awe, but they both have been through some tough times, but there’s plenty of laughter – it will be out in March 2014!!! Then it’s Harry’s book. I gave my editor the high concept pitch & she loves it- yay!

  16. I love the book covers and the stories sound really great to read Vicky. I realize I am a bit late with a comment but better late than never. I haven’t read any of your books before but I most definitively put them on my TBR pile. I know that sounds sad as you probably have your own and know how high that one is and how many good books are waiting to be read. Why can’t we all stay home and get paid for reading books, LOL. Sad, we all cannot be proof readers or editors or bloggers, there have to be the base of readers who work to pay for the books they devour. I haven’t been well the last week but the latest romance books I read were “Highlander most wanted” by Maya Banks and “Lord of wicked intentions” by Lorraine Heath. Both were wonderful and easy to read. Now I will take myself off to see if I can get my hand on your books. Cheerio 🙂

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