Monday, October 29, 2018

Interview with Bec McMaster, TO CATCH A ROGUE

Can you give us a brief overview of your latest book? Is it part of a series?
Hi! Thank you for having me!

My latest book, To Catch A Rogue, is the fourth book in my London Steampunk: The Blue Blood Conspiracy series, in which the Duke of Malloryn puts together a highly-skilled team of individuals who call themselves the Company of Rogues, to combat a mysterious threat against the throne.

To Catch A Rogue deals with what happens when the enemy kidnaps one of their own.

When Charlie Todd is tasked with putting together a team to pull off a dangerous rescue mission, he knows he needs the best. Enter Lark, his one-time best friend, and the only thief who’s ever been able to outwit him. But Lark’s keeping a deadly secret and as the stakes rise, it might be the kind of secret that can destroy them.

It’s a little bit Ocean’s 11 meets Dracula, in a sexy paranormal heist.

Do you have a favorite character?
I adore Charlie. He’s been a side character from the start that’s finally getting his own story. He and Lark were best friends throughout their teenage years, until rising sexual tension and a horrific death tore them apart. Now he wants her back, and he’s not afraid to make that clear.

I think I love writing him so much because he’s so uncomplicated. He knows what he wants now, and he’s not afraid to reveal his heart. He’s the charmer, the clever, loyal guy who would kill to protect his own. And with Lark keeping him at arm’s length, he’s got to use all that charm to show her he’s going to be there for her in the long run.

Did you try the traditional route to publishing, i.e. querying agents/publishers?
The original London Steampunk series was picked up by a traditional publisher in 2011. I’d entered an RWA contest in the US with Kiss of Steel, and Leah Hultenschmidt (then-editor at Sourcebooks) was the final judge. She wanted to see the full manuscript, so I sent it in on the Monday, thinking I wouldn’t hear back for months, and in the middle of Thursday night, received a phone call saying she wanted to buy the book. I’d been preparing to query agents, so there was a mad flurry of activity that weekend, and Jessica Faust of Bookends agreed to represent me.

What factors influenced your decision to self-publish your book(s)?
The original London Steampunk sold really well in ebooks, but not so much in print. I wanted to pursue the spin-off series, as there were definitely more characters and parts of the world I wanted to explore, but there was some talk of shifting me into straight historical romance instead. I enjoy the odd historical romance, but fantasy-fuelled romance is where my heart lies, and so I decided to decline and pursue self-publishing the spin-off series myself. The series had a strong fanbase who wanted more, so it’s the best decision I think I have made.

Do you outline your story or just go where your muse takes you?
I am 100% a pantser (flying by the seat-of-my-pants style writer). I know where the series is loosely heading, the characters who will be the main couples, and a rough outline of what is going to happen in each book, but the fun is in digging for those “plot bones”. For me, the plot is driven by the characters and the decisions they make, so I discover the nitty-gritty elements of the plot as I write the book.

Did you hire an editor to review your manuscript before publishing?
Yes. I work with Hot Tree Editing for my copy-editing and proofing before I self-publish. I want the standard to be as professional as my original traditionally-published books, and no matter how many reads it goes through, things are always missed. I need another set of eyes (preferably more).

What have you’ve learned during your self-publishing journey?
That I love the control (: It’s a big job, as suddenly you’re in charge of everything; organizing covers and editing, writing the book, formatting, marketing, ads etc. But it’s a lot of fun if you’re patient. Every book’s a step forward.  

What advice would you give a new author just entering into the self-publishing arena?
There is no right or wrong way to do any of this. Take advice from numerous sources and work out what works for *you*, do your research, and develop your own process. And write. Always write the next book. That’s the best marketing tip you can ever find.

Besides writing, do you have any other passions?
Reading? *jokes* My partner and I have a small farm, and he wants to breed Suffolk sheep, so we’ve recently re-fenced the entire property in preparation. It’s bordered on three sides by National Park and overlooks the Grampians, so it’s so lovely and peaceful out there. If I never see another piece of fencing wire in my near future I’ll be happy, but I love spending time there. I sometimes joke that it feels like we’re actually farming kangaroos, as there are so many of them!

What’s next for you?
I’m delving into the fifth and final book in the Blue Blood Conspiracy spin-off, Dukes Are Forever, which features the Duke of Malloryn and is coming early 2019. Malloryn’s this deliciously Machiavellian character who was trapped in a marriage of convenience by the devious Miss Adele Hamilton. Needless to say he’s not pleased, and she has very secret reasons for her actions, which are all going to come to light. Marriage of convenience between two enemies? Yes, please.

To Catch A Rogue
Bec McMaster
(London Steampunk: The Blue Blood Conspiracy #4)
Publication date: October 30th 2018
Genres: Adult, Paranormal, Romance, Steampunk

An impossible heist. A thief and a rogue. But will she steal his heart, instead?
The Company of Rogues finally knows the identity of the mastermind behind a plot against the queen—but their enemy is still one step ahead of them. When he kidnaps one of theirs, the Rogues plan a daring rescue mission that will lead them into the heart of the bloodthirsty Crimson Court.
It’s a job for a master thief, and there’s nothing Charlie Todd likes more than a challenge. To pull off the impossible, Charlie needs a crew, including the only thief who’s ever been able to outfox him.
He broke her heart. But now she must risk it all to save his life…
Lark’s spent years trying to forget her past, but the one thing she can’t ignore is the way a single smile from Charlie still sets her heart on fire. When he proposes they work together again, it feels just like old times, but she has one rule: this is strictly business.
It’s Charlie’s last chance to prove he can be trusted with her heart. But Lark’s keeping a deadly secret. And as passions are stirred and the stakes mount, it might be the kind of secret that could destroy them all…
Ocean’s 11 meets Dracula, in this sexy paranormal heist by USA Today Bestselling Author, Bec McMaster. If you like sexy paranormal romances, steampunk shenanigans, and plenty of action-adventure (vampires, dirigible flights, and steamy rooftop chases), then dive into this thrilling heist with Charlie and Lark.

Author Bio:
BEC MCMASTER grew up on a steady diet of 80’s fantasy movies like Ladyhawke, Labyrinth and The Princess Bride, and loves creating epic, fantasy-based worlds with heroes and heroines who must defeat all the odds to have their HEA. If you like sexy, dark, paranormal romance, try her Dark Arts series; for some kick-bustle ladies-saving-the-day steampunk romance then check out London Steampunk; and for rocket-fuelled post-apocalyptic romance with a twist on the werewolf theme, then see her Burned Lands series.
Bec has been nominated for RT Reviews Best Steampunk Romance for Heart of Iron (2013), won RT Reviews Best Steampunk Romance with Of Silk And Steam (2015), and Forged By Desire was nominated for an RWA RITA award in 2015. The series has received starred reviews from Booklist, Publishers Weekly, and Library Journal, with Heart of Iron named one of their Best Romances of 2013.
Escape the Ordinary at or follow her on Twitter @BecMcMaster, or
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