Elle Chardou - The Trials and Tribulations of being a Romance Author
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I often believe romance writers get the shaft because so many people don’t respect our work and feel like it is easy to make up a comprehensive story line about two people—although there are sometimes polyamorous relationships discussed at length—falling in love. What is often left out of the conversation is the amount of emotion we have to conjure up from ourselves to bring our characters to life on the written page (or the electronic page if you are an e-book/tech gadget lover).
It isn’t easy and that is why many readers complain about “insta-love”, “wooden” or “one-dimensional” characters who don’t feel real. I have read many reviews in my time and the number one complaint seems to be “I can’t actually picture this story ever happening in real life”.
I am a huge believer that real life is indeed stranger than fiction but although it is engrained in my psyché, I also try to keep my stories as realistic as possible. At the moment, I am working on two very different series’: one is geared toward those who were crazy about 50 Shades called The Ties That Bind Trilogy and the other is a New Adult romance four-novel collection titled The Atonement Series.
How do I juggle? Well, for one, with them being such completely different series, I can admit that someone who reads The Ties That Bind Trilogy with all of its action, mystery and intrigue will feel a bit put off by the slower pacing The Atonement Series.
Then again, The Ties That Bind is a romantic suspense trilogy with lots of different aspects going on and it actually wraps this month when the final book in the trilogy, Killing Me Softly, finally premieres (this novel is preceded by Killing Time and Killing Desire).
The Atonement Series is just getting started. The first book, Atonement, was released at the end of November and the second book, Only Love, is due to be released in February of 2013.
It’s been very hard slowing down the pace and focusing on the story itself since Atonement and the series is character-driven. Although there isn’t any insta-love, there is plenty of drama but the intrigue and suspense is lacking because it isn’t that type of book.
I believe the best advice I can give to any romance writer and what I have learned the hard way is don’t be afraid to experiment. I will never regret doing The Ties That Bind Trilogy though I wouldn’t recommend it to my New Adult readers who like The Atonement Series unless they are willing to enter a completely different world where romance is not so cut and dry and the gritty underbelly of the BDSM world is exposed and not in a faint-hearted way.
I absolutely love to write and I know this year will bring many trials and tribulations for me as a romance author but funny enough, I look forward to them.
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Elle Chardou is a world traveler and author of several different series. Ms. Chardou is the author of The Ties That Bind Trilogy, The Atonement Series, The Hart Family Saga, The Vamp Saga, The Supernaturals, Beginnings: Book I (The Plague) series.
She is currently working on Killing Me Softly, Only Love, Undertow and several other novels for her continuing paranormal series, The Vamp Saga.
Ms. Chardou has lived abroad in Stockholm (Sweden), Manchester (England), Los Angeles, the San Francisco Bay Area and Portland. She currently resides in Las Vegas, Nevada.