We’re so pleased to welcome author Alexa Milne to TNA today on the virtual tour for her newest novel, My Highland Cowboy. Alexa’s here to talk plot bunnies and is also offering a great giveaway, so be sure to check out those details below.
Those Plotting Bunnies
I’m often asked where I get my ideas from, and I usually reply that ideas aren’t the problem. I get ideas every day for plots and characters. Usually a place to set the story pops into my head, or the circumstances of how two people meet, which leads me to musing on who they are, their backgrounds, and what they want from life.
My most recent plot bunny came from a family conversation – a mid-twenties man takes his four-year-old half-brother to football because their father can’t make it, and meets a single dad there with his own son and so on. Another plot bunny in my head might, if I get my mind into gear, turn into a Christmas story of getting stuck at work with the person who gives you a lift every day. I wonder if you can guess the origin of that bunny. I’ve sort of mapped it out with some ideas, so we’ll see. My current WIP came from a few sources, one was a TV programme of someone who was mixed race and adopted very happily by a white family who decided to find his biological mother. I’ve combined this with a minor character from another story who I wanted to write about, changed his name and the place, and got two MCs. I threw in my love of kitten cams and a story emerged.
I keep a file of ideas which one day I hope to go back to. Somehow, it’s comforting to know they are there, which brings me to my newest stories. Although, this is part of the blog tour for My Highland Cowboy, I’m going to mention While You See a Chance which came out 1st May with Manifold Press. Again, this idea came from two sources, a question on Goodreads about the lack of stories with older men, and two minor characters to whom I wanted to give a story. Therefore, Sion and Phil were born. For me, in my mid-fifties, there aren’t enough older characters in romance, let alone gay romance. Sion and Phil meet again after nearly forty years apart. Each has a lifetime of experience, a story to tell. These two have lived very different lives since they were childhood best friends. While You See a Chance explores three couples who, over more than a hundred years, have dealt with their feelings. The story has been through some changes over the last couple of years. I hope to see more older characters in future.
The inspiration for My Highland Cowboy might seem odd as the idea came from an episode of Countryfile several years ago. For those of you not from the UK, Countryfile is a programme that looks at issues involving the countryside and farming, and has been on the TV on Sundays here for a long time. I remember they had a piece on diversification in farming and showed a farm in Scotland that had decided to run cowboy experiences like those in the film, City Slickers. The plot bunny bounced. Immediately, I had an idea for such a ranch with a lonely older owner and someone from a seemingly completely different life, living in London who came to stay there for some reason and two opposites meet. Duncan is the rancher and Drew the clothes designer there to design for his sister, the local vet’s, wedding. Sparks fly when the two meet, and not just in the bedroom. But how can they be together when their lives are so far apart?
Inspiration and plot bunnies can come from anywhere. You need to keep your eyes and ears open because you never know when they’ll bounce up next.
About the Book
Buy Links: Pride (Early Download) | Amazon US (General Release Date: 6th June 2017)
Publisher: Pride Publishing
Length: 69,000 words
Blurb: Duncan McLeish owns a ranch. Unlike most ranches, this one is in the Scottish Highlands. Having inherited a failing farm from his grandfather, he turns it into a successful business. He has friends and he loves his home, but he’s lonely, and not even infrequent trips to Glasgow and Edinburgh slake that thirst to find someone. Then Drew Sinclair walks into his life.
Drew Sinclair is tantalizingly close to getting his clothing brand noticed in the industry. He and his business partner, Joy, create individual dresses, while, on the side, Drew produces a line of men’s lingerie. He visits Scotland to design a bridal gown for his sister, Jenna, who is marrying Duncan’s best friend at Christmas.
Duncan and Drew have nothing except their Highland upbringing in common, but they say opposites attract, and the attraction is immediate. Is this simply a summer fling, or can two men who live such opposite lives miles away from each other find a way to love?
About the Author
Originally from South Wales, Alexa has lived for over thirty years in the North West of England. Now retired, after a long career in teaching, she devotes her time to her obsessions. Alexa began writing when her favourite character was killed in her favourite show. After producing a lot of fanfiction she ventured into original writing. She is currently owned by a mad cat and spends her time writing about the men in her head, watching her favourite television programmes and usually crying over her favourite football team.
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