Robin Danner is our guest today! Princes, plots, and protectors, oh my!
Robin Danner writes sweet and sexy historicals and lives in Alabama with her husband and three sons. When she is not writing, she enjoys watching reality television and singing karaoke … quite possibly off-key!
She is a graduate of Troy University and published her first novel not long after earning her degree in Biology. She currently works full-time as a billing clerk and shuffles her time between writing, work, and her family. Find out more about Robin at http://robindanner.webs.com.
I love the idea of having a strong, female captain. What or who inspired you to create Nadia?
Great question, Nulli! I’m a pantser*, so when I set out to write The Princes Bound, I had a general idea that I wanted to write about two brothers, who just happened to princes. Somewhere in the first few paragraphs, I thought it would be neat to have a strong female lead. I didn’t originally set out to write a female soldier, but once I did I sort of had a “Xena, Warrior Princess” character in mind. Nadia pretty much wrote her own story after that!
Mathis’ character doesn’t seem like the typical good guy. Is there a bad boy lurking beneath the surface?
Mathis is the textbook ideal of a “good guy” actually. He is schoarly and moral and everything you would want a prince to be. He’s devoted to his kingdom and once he decides that Nadia is the one for him, he goes after her! The “bad boy” title actually belongs to his brother, Talin.
If I wanted to get Talin to notice me, what should I do? What about Mathis?
Talin is the quintessential “bad boy” as I mentioned before. Beneath his hard exterior though lurks a sensitive soul, a side he hides from most of the world. To catch Talin’s attention, you must be strong and provide a challenge, which Rowena certainly does in his story, The Princes Determined. Mathis is a bit of a loner character, so to bring him out of his shell Nadia was the perfect counterpoint. She is fierce and devoted, two characteristics which immediately attract Mathis’ attention.
If I wanted Nadia to train me in swordplay, what would be the first thing that she’d teach me? On the topic of Nadia, Is she more of a make love, or make war kind of woman?
Nadia’s weapon of choice is the bow, but she is quite talented in the art of swordsmanship as well. She was trained by her father, who is Talin’s chief advisor. She enters the military to avenge her brother’s death and has spent her whole life proving that a female solider can excel in battle. She plays a huge part in the training of her nephew, Hugh, who you will meet in the third book of the series, The Princes Knighted. Nadia has a hand in the training of new recruits for the Noventian army. Despite her desire for revenge, Nadia is an interesting character. She is a dedicated soldier, but she does not set out to partake in battles despite her chosen career path.
You write sexy historicals, does a part of you wish that you’d been born in a different era?
Sometimes I do wish that I’d been around a few generations ago if only for the cool clothes! But I’m a creature of comfort and I’m quite positive that I would not want to give up electricity and running water! Instead I chose to submerse myself in historial literature where I can imagine how the world used to be without giving up the technological advances I depend on.
Did you have to do a lot of research to create the setting and language for this world?
Noventia and Isidor are fictional kingdoms, so I did not have to perform too much research. I loosely based my setting on the mid-fifteenth century England and France, but the setting was a figment of my imagination. It is actually quite difficult to create a “world” that did not exist in the past. I have to keep up with the cites and layout of the countries and there is no easy reference that I could Google. I actually ended up drawing myself a map to keep the cities and countries separate.
From biology major to romance author, there has to be a story there. What made you decide to start writing?
I’ve always loved to write! When I was in high school, my yearbook actually states that to win a Nobel Peace Prize in Literature was my goal. I wanted to a be a family physician, which is why I majored in science. During college, I began to write fanfiction for the entertainment of my younger cousins. When I was a senior, I decided to try my hand at writing an actual novel. I did and that book was actually my first work to be contracted. I gave up my dream of medicine and set about writing instead. Of course, I have a day job and I have to balance my writing with my normal day-to-day life.
A friend comes to you and tells you they want to be a writer. What is the first piece of advice you’d give them?
My biggest problem used to be writer’s block. I would get stuck on a scene for weeks and weeks. Finally I started ending the scene and continuing the story. I then come back and flesh out the scene that I got stuck on. This is what I always tell people when they ask about writing. If you get stuck, just keep pushing through the scene, or if you can’t, just end it and move on!
The world you’ve created is very captivating. Can we expect more in this series?
Thanks, Nulli! Yes, you can actually. The Princes Bound is the first in the series and is being released Oct 15, 2012. The Princes Determined is coming Nov 19, with The Princes Knighted following soon after on Jan 7, 2013. I have plans for a fourth and fifth book later in 2013.
Robin came bearing gifts! Check out the blurb:
Prince Mathis wants nothing but peace for his kingdom, while his brother, Prince Talin, seems determined to align his own kingdom with their family’s sworn enemy through an alliance in the form of marriage. Mathis will be damned if he will witness the ceremony binding his brother to the daughter of the man rumored to have murdered their father.
Talin’s most trusted captain, Nadia d’Arcy, is ordered to abduct Mathis and bring him by force to Noventia for the wedding, a marriage that is not what it seems to be.
Mathis and Nadia’s mutual attraction tests both the captain’s loyalty to her prince and Mathis’ already worn patience. As a rebellion begins to threaten all that they hold dear, Nadia must choose between the life she has always known or surrender to the handsome prince who is determined to make her his.
Is there anything else you’d like readers to know?
I can’t think of anything off the top of my head, but if readers would like to find out more about me or my books, they can visit http://robindanner.webs.com. Shoot me an email (the address is on my site) ! I love to hear from readers!
Thank you so much for stopping by, Robin. Have a burning question or a comment? Post it below!
*A panster may have a title or an overarching idea for a book based on a time period, a concept, or an individual character. They may know one or two of these ideas up front. Or they may start with a single scene that intrigues them. They will rarely know the end of their book. Panster’s may have basic ideas about who their characters are.
Most of the time outlining their books beforehand damages their ability to write. Writing a synopsis of their book beforehand can destroy the muse and create writer’s block.
The opposite of a panster is a plotter. A plotter needs structure when they write. They often need charts, diagrams and outlines to feel comfortable. Many times they need to understand what the beginning, middle, and end of the book looks like before they start writing. Not knowing things ahead of time can create significant anxiety for the writer who is a plotter.