I’ve come to the conclusion that life would get pretty dull if there were no surprises, though of course we’d all hope for pleasant ones. I never expected to be an author—especially one published by Penguin. I never expected Sound of the Heart to be written at all. I certainly never expected to start a new life after I’d turned forty, but I sure am glad I did.
Hello Readers! Today I bring you romance author Genevieve Graham. Genevieve graduated from the University of Toronto in 1986 with a Bachelor of Music in Performance (playing the oboe). While on a ski vacation in Alberta, she met her future husband in a chairlift lineup and subsequently moved to Calgary to be with him. They have recently settled in a small, peaceful town in Nova Scotia with their two beautiful daughters. Writing became an essential part of Genevieve’s life a few years ago, when she began to write her debut novel, Under the Same Sky. The companion novel, Sound of the Heart, was subsequently released on May 1, 2012 (review later today).
BLOG TOUR (plus Giveaway!) Readers: I am happy to announce that we are part of Genevieve Graham’s blog tour for Sound of the Heart. See below for more details!
Expect the Unexpected
I guess I figured that after I turned forty, I should kind of expect my life to settle in, be predictable, relax into my post-baby years. After all, I’d already done what I’d set out to do: I achieved a Bachelor of Music from the University of Toronto, attained a Black Belt in Karate, worked for years in marketing and promotions, married the man of my dreams, brought two of the most beautiful, intelligent girls into the world … time to settle down, right?
Wrong. Because my life has been filled with so many surprises over the past few years, I hardly know where to begin.
In 2007 I was forty-three. After reading Diana Gabaldon’s “Outlander” series a whole bunch of times, then following up with Sara Donati’s series, some books by Penelope Williamson and Jennifer Roberson, well, I thought I’d see what I could do with a story, all on my own. Never having written anything before, I had no idea where to start, so I just sat and stared at the computer screen for a while.
I never expected Maggie to drift into my mind and start telling me the story of Under the Same Sky. I never expected her to practically take me by the hand and show me what to type. And I certainly never expected to be thrown onto a battlefield with Andrew. But okay, I went with it. And after that I couldn’t stop writing for 150,000 words (I eventually edited it down by almost half).
Three years later, I received a call from Jacques de Spoelberch, the amazing literary agent of Margaret George, the late Dorothy Dunnett, Joshilyn Jackson, and Sophie Perinot, to name a few. We worked together on some aspects of the story—the guy’s a genius!—then he placed it on Penguin’s desk. Within forty-eight hours, they had come to him with a contract.
I never expected either of those things to happen. Never even imagined them, to tell the truth.
To make things even crazier, the contract requested that I write a companion novel to Under the Same Sky. When Jacques asked if that was possible, I (of course) said “Sure!” After I hung up, my screams of celebration were edged with panic … a second book? I’d never expected to write a second book.
Fortunately, Sound of the Heart enthralled me from its first paragraph. The story has gone through a few different metamorphoses (meaning I rewrote the last half twice, making it completely different each time), and I really enjoy it. I love Dougal’s big, tough personality, softened by love, then tempered to steel when he is forced to rescue the woman who means the world to him.
So, since this story was so unexpected by me, I put a little something in it—actually, it’s pretty major—that I hope will take all of you by surprise. Dougal definitely didn’t expect it.
What unexpected event changed your life—for the better?
More about Sounds of the Heart
Dougal MacDonnell, a fierce warrior from the Highlands of Scotland, is able to hear the thoughts of other men and dream how the future will unfold. Devastated by the loss of his family during the Battle of Culloden in 1746, he fosters a deep hatred for the English. But when Glenna, the love of his life and a Scottish outlaw, is captured and shipped overseas, Dougal is forced to join an English army made of vanquished Scots. Now fighting on the side of his sworn enemies, he embarks on a journey that will take him across the seas to the colonies. There he will risk everything for the chance to find his true love.
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Be sure to stop back later today to read Vampbard’s review of Sound of the Heart!
BLOG TOUR (plus Giveaway!) Readers: I am happy to announce that we are part of Genevieve Graham’s blog tour for Sound of the Heart. The blog tour runs during the month of May. The Grand Prize for the tour is a signed copy of Sound of the Heart PLUS a four cd set of relaxation cds created by her incredibly talented musical friends, Cori Ashley and Ed Franks. Please visit Ms. Graham’s blog tour website for more details and be sure to enter using the form below!