|Wagers Gone Awry|
Interview with Heath, Early of RavensdaleTell us about yourself, please.
Heath gives a brief bow. “Thank you for your kind invitation to visit with you. That’s a lovely blue gown you’re wearing. It reminds me of Brooke’s eyes.”
He settles into an armchair. “Always a bit awkward, talking about oneself, especially when one has been born into a life of privilege, but cannot boast ancestors one is proud of. I don’t suppose you’d be happy with I loathe kidney pie and flowers make me sneeze?”
“Hmph, I thought not.” He crosses his legs and drums his fingers on the chair’s arm.
“I’m the eighth Earl of Ravensdale and have had to leave the comforts of London to travel to a remote dairy farm I won in a wager. Well, at least I thought I won the blasted thing, but it seems I only won a portion of the place.”
He leans forward a bit. “Have you any idea how smelly a dairy is? And the flies...hoards of the pesky things.” He flicks his hand toward the window. “And this farm is run by a troupe of sassy women. Beautiful women, I might add.”
Authors call what you want but cannot have "the conflict" -- what is yours?
Heath chuckles. “Ah, that’s an age-old question. What do I want? To sell this farm, but if I do, I’ll render the Culpepper misses homeless. Makes me rather a cur, doesn’t it?”
His gaze drops to his lap.
“No, what I really want is Brooke Culpepper, but she cannot abide me, and I doubt an offer of marriage would tempt her. Besides, the Ravensdales, up to now, haven’t exactly exemplified fidelity or marital bliss, so I plan on enjoying a few more years of freedom before buckling under the responsibilities of the earldom and acquiring a wife and producing an heir.”
What can you not do (but need to do) during this story?
“As I mentioned before, I need to sell this parcel of green hell so that I can return to London’s civilization.” Heath shakes his head then winces. “And, after Brooke’s over- zealous servant took it upon himself to crack me on my head, I’m under doctor’s orders not to travel until I’ve recovered fully.”
He shifts in his chair while shooting a look to the parted door.
“Trust me, having Brooke under the same roof is causing me much more discomfort than my aching head is.”
What inner doubt causes you the most difficulty?
Heath gazes into space for a long moment. A small smile quirks his mouth before he shrugs.
“I can barely read, and it’s a secret I’ve kept close to my chest since my youth. I trust you’ll not bandy it about indiscreetly. I also have a terrible sweet tooth.”
In the story world your author created, explain what it is you fear most and why.
“I fear I’ve lost Brooke because of the wager between us.” He glances up. “She lost, you know, and she should have won. Would have won if outside forces hadn’t interfered.”
“I’m also afraid I’m stuck with this farm, and I detest country life.” Heath makes a small gesture with his hand. “It’s a childhood thing, the story much too long and boring to tell.”
What special skills do you rely on?
“Not reading!” Heath chuckles again and taps his temple with his forefinger. “I have quite a memory for numbers, though, and can recall every card dealt in a game.”
Why are you happy (or not happy) with the way your story ended?
Heath grins. “Oh, I’m happy with the ending, even if my author manipulated me. Authors seem to enjoy doing that, pushing us characters around and torturing us a bit.”
His grin slips. “I did end up keeping the confounded dairy farm, and obtained guardianship of the younger Culpeppers. I’m going to have my hands full with that lot. Speaking of which, I need to discover what mischief they’ve gotten themselves into in my absence.”
Heath stands and bows. “I thank you for having me as your guest. I’d be honored to return anytime.”
About the Writer
Bestselling, award-winning author, Collette Cameron, has a BS in Liberal Studies and a Master's in Teaching. Author of the Castle Brides Series. Highland Heather Romancing a Scot Series, and Conundrums of the Misses Culpepper Series, Collette writes Regency and Scottish historicals and makes her home in the Pacific Northwest with her husband and five mini-dachshunds. Mother to three and a self-proclaimed Cadbury Chocolate chocoholic, Collette loves a good joke, inspirational quotes, flowers, trivia, and all things shabby chic and cobalt blue. You'll always find dogs, birds, quirky—sometimes naughty—humor, and a dash of inspiration in her novels.
Her motto for life? You can’t have too much chocolate, too many hugs, or too many flowers or books. She’s thinking about adding shoes to that list.
What was your biggest challenge in writing this book?
I wanted Heath to almost be an anti-hero; you know, a guy who’s not perfect, with some real faults but still comes through as likeable in the end. Creating a character who readers could like despite his obvious flaws, one readers could still find good qualities in, stretched me.
The very nature of what Heath decides to do to solve his situation and Brooke’s dilemma was enough to have many readers slamming the book closed or tossing it across the room. Yet, guys like Heath do exist, and they aren’t all rotten-to-the-core, if you’ll excuse the cliché.
Are any sequels planned for this book?
Wagers Gone Awry is the first book in a five-book series. You’ll see Heath and Brooke again as the adventures of the other Culpepper misses are told. And trust me, some of their capers are going to be a lot of fun.
What genre(s) would you like to write that you haven't tried yet?
I have some story ideas for contemporaries, a young adult series (I hope to start that one in the summer of 2015), a couple of paranormal series, and even a time-travel series.
There just aren’t enough hours in the day to write all the stories I have floating around in my head. I have to jot them down in my story Bible to keep track of all of them.
What would your readers be surprised to learn about you?
I hate mushrooms and peas.
Oh, you want something with a little more substance?
I didn’t always want to be an author. I fact, I didn’t start writing until 2011. That book, Highlander’s Hope, was published in 2013.
Why should readers who haven't picked up one of your books before give this one a try?
Well, they might enjoy a good chuckle or two if they get my sense of humor. Not everyone does, though.
I love history and what I write, and I hope those passions comes through in my stories.
About the Book
Title Wagers Gone Awry (Conundrums of the Misses Culpepper, Book 1)
Genre Historical Romance (Regency)
Author Collette Cameron
Book heat level (based on movie ratings): R
Brooke Culpepper resigned herself to spinsterhood when she turned down the only marriage proposal she’d likely ever receive to care for her family. After her father dies, a distant cousin inherits the estate and becomes their guardian but permits Brooke to act in his stead.
Heath, Earl of Ravensdale is none-too-pleased to discover five young women call the dairy farm he won and intends to sell, their home. Desperate, pauper poor, and with nowhere to go, Brooke proposes a wager. His stakes? The farm. Hers? Her virtue. The land holds no interest for Heath, but Brooke does and he accepts her challenge.
Brooke loses, and her devastation is compounded when the cousin arrives, intending to haul the Culpepper misses off to London. Heath astounds himself and proposes in order to apply for guardianship of the other girls. Does Brooke dare marry the handsome stranger who’d been bent on compromising her? Will Heath regret his impulsive gesture, or will unexpected love flourish?
Buy This Book
Publisher Blue Rose Romance in partnership with Windtree Press
Barnes and Noble http://barnesandnoble.com/w/books/2940151707213
Author Social Media
Amazon Author Page http://www.amazon.com/Collette-Cameron/e/B00CWLYXL2