Can you introduce yourself to my readers a little?
When I told everyone I was getting a PhD in English history in order to write more accurate romance novels, they all assumed I was joking. I wasn’t. While avoiding working on my dissertation, I began a light-hearted romp about spies during the Napoleonic Wars, with a modern framing character who just happened to be a Harvard PhD, doing her dissertation research in London (not like there was anything autobiographical going on there!). The academic job market being what it is, I wound up switching over to law school, and, by an even stranger quirk of fate, got my first book contract my first month at Harvard Law. I wound up writing three books in law school and another while practicing at a large law firm before abandoning doc review to hang out with my imaginary characters full time.
Can you introduce us to the world that you have created?
My books have been described as “Pride and Prejudice meets Bridget Jones” and as “The Scarlet Pimpernel meets James Bond”. In other words, there’s romance, there’s intrigue, there’s espionage, and, yes, there are men in knee breeches. As England battles against France and Prinny eats his way into a large size of corset, a new floral spy has taken up the fight against Bonaparte: the Pink Carnation. But who is this demmed, elusive Pink Carnation? Will grad student Eloise Kelly be able to figure it out? And will Napoleon ever get a good night’s sleep again?
The Pink Carnation novels: The Secret History of the Pink Carnation, The Masque of the Black Tulip, The Deception of the Emerald Ring, The Seduction of the Crimson Rose, The Temptation of the Night Jasmine, The Betrayal of the Blood Lily, The Mischief of the Mistletoe and The Orchid Affair
Will this be your first RT or are you a veteran? Any advice for those who are going for the first time?
This is my very first RT and I’m absolutely terrified! I’ve made my way through a few RWAs (and lots of other initials), but I’ve heard that RT is an experience unto itself. Any advice for a newbie?
Are you speaking on any panels during RT? Are there any you are looking forward to?
Since this is my first RT, I figured it was best to dip my stiletto gingerly into the waters before plunging into a panel, but I am very much looking forward to hearing Carole Nelson Douglas talking about plotting mysteries and Victoria Dahl talking about the Purple Prose taboo. And, of course, all the mixers!
If someone were wanting to meet up with you at RT, who should they look for?
I recently volunteered to meet some readers at B&N in DC, and was told that they figured me out from the Starbucks cup in my hand! Not like I have a caffeine problem or anything…. I’m the bouncy little blonde person in three inch heels gesticulating too emphatically, occasionally with the hand holding the coffee mug. If someone wants to meet up with me, they can follow the trail of spilled caramel macchiato or check in on my website, www.laurenwillig.com, or my Facebook author page, http://www.facebook.com/#!/pages/Lauren-Willig/10504674644, where I’ll be charting my peregrinations. I’ll also be doing a reading from my latest book, The Orchid Affair, while I’m in LA, on April 7 at 7:00 at Vroman’s, so you can absolutely find me there!