BOOK SPOTLIGHT ON: The Woman of His Dreams
A voracious reader her whole life, author Susan Payne loves the written word. When reading more than fifty books per month wasn’t enough, she decided to allow her mind to take flight and write all the many stories that kept intruding in her life. She blended her love of history and her love of words to create over eighty stories. All historical and centering on a couple finding love and a happy ever after together.
The author has published a series of stories surrounding fictional Sweetwater Kansas beginning with Harrison Ranch through The Wild Rose Press. Also, contracted through Wild Rose Press this summer was The Persistent Marquess, Forever Kind of Woman, Rescued By a Highlander, Texas Ranger, and the Professor, Regency Christmas Anthology, Three Sisters and Blind Faith.
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BLIND FAITH BLURB:
Lord Hedley, over his better judgement, delivers a young woman to visit her wounded fiancé. He worries he has done the worse possible thing after that woman worms her way into the wounded soldiers’ lives – and into his own heart.
Hello Susan! Welcome to Jeny's TattleTales!
Jeny Heckman 0:00
And welcome to Jenny's tattletales. I'm Jenny Heckman. I'm the author of the heaven and earth series. And this is Andrea Florescu. And she is a marketing manager for a Celtic butterfly publishing and today we are talking with the lovely Susan Payne. She is the author of a standalone book entitled The Woman of His Dreams. And it's a historical romance. And we are so excited to have you here today. Welcome.
Susan Payne 0:27
Thank you for inviting me.
Jeny Heckman 0:29
Ah, so I guess the first question I wanted to know is if this is a historical romance kind of genre, right? So, what genre Have you never written that you'd like to write? And why?
Susan Payne 0:50
Possibly Viking. I don't go back that far. In my, my thoughts. I like to write about strong women, I can't, I can't read or believe in a woman who's you know, sit there when a person says, you know, someone saved me. It goes so against my grain and my four daughters are, you know, I, I find it difficult to believe that. If there were that many women, that week of mine, we would never be where we are right now. As far as how fire human race has come because we raised the children. If we weren't strong, we would not produce strong children, whether male or female. And as I was growing up, of course, a lot of the romance were regencies. And a lot of it was women who seemed to hover in the corner. whimpering, saying to the strong male save me. Yeah. That's so true.
Andrea Florescu 2:01
And I don't think there's too many women that like to read those kinds of books anymore. I read almost 80% of historical romances. And I remember like, 1520 years ago, when I started reading these books, that's what it was. We've been waiting for guys to come and save them. Yeah.
Susan Payne 2:19
Yeah. And a lot of mine, when they say, Oh, what is your, your story? What trope and I'm going, Oh, I don't follow a trope. Very, I mean, maybe, you know, there's some rescue. But there's, I don't follow tropes. And so I can't put an arrow Cinderella or, or, you know, any of the usual, especially for the Regency. Again, there's still, I think there were a lot of women thinking for themselves. There's, there's historical documentation of them being dressed like men smoking, joining the army, you know, being soldiers. So, you know, we may want to think that they wore gloves and kept under a pair of cells, so they didn't, you know, get any freckles and, and always did, as their mothers told them to do. But I don't think that's the truth. You know, I think a lot of whom were pregnant before they got married. I think a lot of them had a lot more experiences than maybe their husband has ever you know, knew about but as a teenage girl, yes. Curiosity is there and the urge to flirt and what have you and, and, you know, if you've got a good looking foot, man, I just can't see him going. Oh, no. Good, right. Oh, yeah. So yes, it's that kind of thing. That that I, I wanted to kind of change. I enjoyed reading the story. Barbara Cartland was, as I love Vegas, you know, author of the time for any of that type of thing. But if you notice, you know, it was a very sweet romance. There was hardly ever an invite.
Andrea Florescu 4:13
She was one of those. I think I saw adaptations of her books, like 30 years ago. There's some really good ones. I think those movies were the ones that got me reading these books. I saw no romance.
Susan Payne 4:31
Yeah, but they were sweet romances. Yeah. I found a place that actually called her books. Costume porn. Oh. They were always written in very much detail on usually they took someone who is poor, have a good family but poor and a richer older lady would take her in under her wing and dressed her and then one of the nephews or something would appear And, and actually, you know, kind of Hawk up on her and, and decide that you know, buy her jewelry and, and pay for all this stuff that was going on and but a lot of the story if you took it out of pages, a lot of it was about the clothing and the hair and the jewels. So, when I read that about the poor, and I thought, Oh yeah, that's okay. A lot of them because the stories were so similar in in actual writing even you know that you sometimes would swear you had just read them. And you didn't Of course, but it was at the time, it was all we had to read along that style. And I've always been a historic golf buff, I guess interested in anything. Going all the way back. I recently wrote that I'd probably do a love story between cave people, you know, caveman woman, but there wasn't a whole lot there to write about. Because they were limited, even in their vocabulary, I'm sure was limited. And you know, other than quacking her over the head and dragging her into the I couldn't see any more of the foreplay or anything going on you know, that was going to be pretty much it for the love story involved in that period of time. So, have you read clan of the cave bear?
Jeny Heckman 6:31
No. Oh, though, yeah, if you if you've never if you want to look, she did amazing. GML is her name. And she wrote a series called clan of the cave bear. And there's a whole bunch I think there are six or seven books in the series. And it's all about that it's all about, about the very earliest stuff, man and the transition into the new man. So, there's like that, that little hitch in evolution that is happening. So, you have the kind of the, they call them the flat hands. Okay. And then there was the new man that was coming that was blond and tall and beautiful and everything and, and it's the older noematic whatever, Neo, whatever it is the Neo man melding with the new modern one. And the new modern one had had things that this one didn't. And it’s a whole series, and it was written quite some time ago. Jean ml is the author, and I'm not sure if she's still alive, I'm not sure. But she's got a whole series on it pretty, pretty popular series. And if you're interested in reading about that, she did a wonderful job at trying to get you into that scene and, and the way they talk and all that stuff. Matter of fact, the talk is a big part of the story. So anyway, that would be interesting for me to read, ran through.
Susan Payne 8:02
my mind to do one, and that was it, I would be basically one done. And of course, no one could say you were wrong. You know, nobody's gonna point out any flaws. We're not around. But there are caves joints that you can, you know, can get a lot of information from. I've always, you know, checked into those kinds of things, too.,
Jeny Heckman 8:26
And, yeah well, that's perfect. Yeah. Okay. So, if you had if writing is your first passion, what is your second?
Susan Payne 8:36
If you're not allowed to antique furniture? Oh, yeah, by the time I was first married, which was at 18 I started collecting old furniture. And that's all you could call it this old furniture, you know, and I still have the original pieces, I rarely get rid of any of them. So, I've had, you know, a goodly number of years collecting them. And I've got originals from 1850 and I'll put it in my books, you know, people will walk into a room and you know, I described my sofa there you know, my table, whatever. And, and, and go from there.
Jeny Heckman 9:28
But what time period are you talking about?
Susan Payne 9:30
I have everything back to Charles the one. Wow. So, this colonial kind of style or earlier than that we're going Rococo, which was, you know, it's kind of what they were using a little bit in the Regency time. But it was their old furniture. Okay, this is my great grandmother's mirror and she always had it so course I have it in my living room, you know?
Susan Payne 10:02
Yeah, that's true. Yeah. Oh,
Jeny Heckman 10:04
Wow. That's cool. That's really cool. What a great side.
That's awesome. It's our second passion. I guess. Very far from the first though, did I? Okay.
Susan Payne 10:19
The hang gliding type of person, I guess.
Jeny Heckman 10:22
I'm not either, believe me, I think your feet should be firmly planted on the ground. But that's just me. My kids want to go skydiving next summer and I'm I won't be watching them. Okay, if you could spend time with a character from your book, who would it be? And what would you do during that day?
Susan Payne 10:45
Well, I think I go back to my first series, I had those self-published because they were not what I would consider commercially viable. They were done. Similar to a spider in the corner is what I call it fly on the wall where something is kind of telling the story and showing the reactions of people to what's happening around them. And then you get the characters themselves, their thoughts, and their reactions to things as, as you know, the story progresses. And I did not know I was building a series at the time. But I found this character that I just she is so sweet. She is so good that I thought she deserved more time to be seen. So, the first story was she was here coming to the dead zone see. She was an orphan from New York founding home, and she took and watched over some orphans on their train ride out west. She was too old herself to be on you know as an option for an orphan. But she got a job. So, they went out as far as St. Louis, she got a job there with a French chef who taught her in his kitchens to be actually a sous chef at the time, that was a rarity for even a woman to be in a professional kitchen situation. And she gets fired because they start rumors about her and the chef who's married and why she's the sous chef rather than her abilities and, and she leaves that situation and takes basically any job she could get, which happened to be cooking for a ranch in the middle of Kansas. And so, she becomes a female ranch cook. And things go from there. But she ends up bringing other orphans from New York State she sees the potential for their job she sees potential for, you know, getting out under the stigma of being an orphan. And that's, I ended up with eight stories going off from her one story and then people who come and they all have a love story basis in the in each of the books. But it's there's a lot more to it. And
Andrea Florescu 13:51
What's her name? Her name is Cassie. Cassie. Yes.
Jeny Heckman 13:56
And what was so if you were to have spent a day with her what would you do? What would you want to go do?
Susan Payne 14:03
I want to just follow her around she had a unique way of thinking about the food she a lot of my people, especially in westerns, there's a lot of food involved. Cooking is another somewhat passion for me. And so, it just most of my people are my characters are normal everyday characters. I mean, it used to be for Regency Oh, they always had to be lady this and Lord that, and many times I will bring that down to that's not who the story is about that. It's not about because, you know, that was such a small part of life. And there are a million people in London and you know, not that many words. aristocrats, so there was a lot more, but they say, you know, downstairs and there were upstairs. And so, a lot of my stories tend to be more about normal people finding love setting up their life, figuring out, you know how it all works. And I tried to set up a background for them. So that when you're done with the book, you have a feeling for those people. Most of the time they are sympathetic, empathetic, the people that you said, Boy, I wish I could be there meet and spend a day with them. So, you know, it's hard to choose just one but because Cassie was my, my first you know, I go with her.
Jeny Heckman 15:51
Yeah, you know, there's a Pride and Prejudice is one of my favorite books and the one really great book called longboard. Have you read that? No, yes, it's basically the server, the servants of the family in private, Brighton prejudice. And I always thought that was such a great take to talk about the service is going on. It's what was happening behind the scenes when the Pride and Prejudice stories going on. It's all the servants and what their story is behind the scenes. And I always thought that was a great take on it. So, I love that you do that. Because you're right, everybody goes to kind of the Lord and the lady. And, and when really, most of the people were not that way. So that's a great take on it.
Susan Payne 16:36
It's really, I do a lot of soldiers, soldiers, back from the war and just, you know, everyday people and for my westerns, it, because America basically didn't have an aristocratic you know, except for maybe Boston had a little bit New York a little bit. Why don't you got the side of the Mississippi, you know, there were no, it didn't care who you know, no one cared who your name, you know, your father was or your, your, your family, you were going to have to stand up for yourself or be trampled, you know, with? Yeah.
Jeny Heckman 17:20
The stories are interesting to me, I mean, you know, that you can sit around and eat grapes all you want. But, you know, the people that went out there and worked in actually established the country and, and, you know, they went in the covered wagons, and they, they, you know, they worked the land, and they did it. I mean, those were interesting lives. And they were actually the ones that built this for all of us. So, it is it's a really, their story is more fascinating to me anyway. So, it's uh, I'm excited actually to read one of your books. I think that will be kind of fun to read one of your books and see Well, I have
Susan Payne 17:52
by next month I'll have 13 published out there. And I've written at five Ah, it counts. I write constantly. I have probably 20 works in progress going what I would do if they kept nagging at me how quickly put them down. I give them a number WAP next to it like so, you know, I have like 30 I'm up to number 35 some of them have already turned into books but yet it lets me free up my mind to finish the book I'm writing or the usually the books I'm usually writing more than one at a time. And it gives me the urgency I guess I always feel the urgency to finish one because I have all these others that I need to get down and on paper. The form is my you know, my preference.
Jeny Heckman 18:55
I love it. Okay, well. Um, so now our last question that we have for you is what would you most like to say to your readers?
Susan Payne 19:05
Um, I think it's read everything you can all genres. You don't like one, skip it. Go light on it, whatever. But don't deny yourself I keep reading myself. I always I got books going all the time. My Kindle is full of little things that I can stop and read. Because of that, I've been doing a lot of anthologies because they're shorter for me to read. I'm a fast reader. I'm a fast typist. So, I can do it. You know, do multiple things. And still, have plenty of time. I usually watch TV with my husband. Four to six hours every evening. I sleep 10 hours a night. At a minimum, so, you know, the rest of the time is basically right. My writing time or my reading time. And yeah, so I, I tell them don't you know, even if you're a writer, don't stop reading. Don't you know, it's too It's too much information out there that you don't want to let pass you by. Yeah,
Jeny Heckman 20:25
that's great advice. Really great advice. Okay. Well, I would like to say thank you so much. On behalf of Andrea myself, I'd like to say thank you so much for joining us today, Susan. It has been such a pleasure getting to know you and getting to know your writing style. And all it sounds intriguing. I mean, I'm really excited to read you. And I just wanted to say that Susan will be on our tattletale’s page, so you can get going to Jenny, Jenny heckman.com. And you can read more about Susan and all of her books that she writes. And if not on her webs website, go to her website, which is author Susan payne.com. And that's about it. That's what we have. And I'd like to say thank you again, so much for coming on. It's
been such a pleasure.
Susan Payne 21:16
Thank you to you. Both of you made it painless.
Jeny Heckman 21:19
Okay. All right. Okay, well, you have a great day, and we hope to talk to you soon.
Susan Payne 21:30
Thank you very much. Bye
Jeny Heckman 21:31
ABOUT THE BOOK
THE WOMAN OF HIS DREAMS
Release Date: December 9, 2020
Publisher: The Wild Rose Press
Cover Artist: R. J. Morris
Genre/Sub-Genre: Regency Romance
Cassie took in his pallor, his despondent pose, and his breakfast still waiting to be eaten sitting next to him on a rough wooden table.
Hesitantly, she said softly so as not to startle him, “Christopher, it’s me, Cassie. I’ve come because you asked for me.”
Christopher’s head snapped up, facing where she stood and he seemed paler than even before. “Oh, Cassie. I-I’m sorry. I’m so sorry. I didn’t know what to tell them. I-I was having a bad time and they asked for my fiancée’s name, and I didn’t want to tell them, you know… I didn’t know what to say so I finally gave them your name.” By this time there were tears running from under the bandage and Cassie went to the bed sitting on the edge. Trying to give him comfort.
She bent to put her cheek against Christopher’s, getting as close as she dares without hurting him, to let him know where she was and that she wasn’t upset he called for her.
“Shush. Shush. It’s going to be all right. I’m here with you now. It’s all right, anything you said, it’s all right. I don’t care. I’m here now and that is all that matters. Oh, my poor boy, what have they done to you?” she whispered. Cassie found herself rocking, holding the little brother she always wanted, crying in her arms.
“Lord Hedley, would you care to join us?” she asked loud enough for all to hear.
“No, I’m afraid I couldn’t add anything to the discussion since I have not read the book in question,” he answered. “Simply checking on whether you wanted me to take Rex back before he destroys something by chewing it to bits.”
“Were you missing him?” she queried.
“No, I was missing a grandfather clock, but then I found it residing in the east wing,” he said dryly.
“Well, yes. I knew you wouldn’t mind. When one is without sight, it always seems like night. The chiming will help to keep one on a normal routine, my lord.” Again, she wore that unfathomable smile. “As for Rex, I wouldn’t wish to disturb him. He’s resting beside Corporal Beals, newly arrived from the Peninsular, and they both need to stay quiet for a while.”
At that, Beals swung his one leg over the edge of the bed with eyes staring blankly. Colorless eyes that Quinn still couldn’t get used to. The young man said, “I much appreciated the use of your dog, m’lord. He reminds me of a setter I left at home. He was old when I left so I can’t believe he’d be waitin’ for me. It was good to feel a furry head again, I guess.”
“Don’t disturb yourself or Rex for me. I find him too distracting, always wanting to be played with or taken outside. It’s best he stays here with you. Then I can get some work done,” Quinn told the young man.
“We’ll watch him for you, m’lord. No problem there.” And the very young soldier unconsciously petted the now fawning dog next to him.