Romantic Suspense and Thriller

Dance Away, Danger By Alexa Bourne

Friday, January 10, 2014

When the world around us starts to close in and crush us, most of us do something to take away the stress. Some people exercise. Some people play sports. Others watch sports and have a few drinks. Even more people might go to the movies or just grab a book and read. Which do you do?

I do a lot of those activities, but what calms me like nothing else is writing. I don’t mean revising and doing edits. I mean actually putting a pen to a blank piece of paper and just writing. That simple act brings me such satisfaction and truly calms my heart. (And yes, you read that right. I handwrite all my books during the rough drafts. The more I revise the more time I spend on the computer.) Now, this may sound cheesy, but honestly, playing with ideas and discovering new secrets about characters brings so much excitement to my soul. Ask anyone who really knows me! They’ve told me once or twice that my eyes light up and my silly laugh is infectious.

Of course, I do write romantic suspense most of the time so what does it really say about me that I get so tickled with my writing? I’m excited to kill people off? Actually, yes. If I’ve had a bad day I can come home and explore various ways to torture characters. I might consider giving one of the victims the name of someone who gave me a hard time. If I’m angry, I might be in the perfect mood to write a fight scene or a chase scene. Another way writing eases my soul is by being my version of therapy. Last fall I had some medical issues arise that were a bit frightening. Rather than freak out and panic, I would often sit down with my notebook and write out my emotions. I would keep them pretty vague so that I could turn them around and later on add depth to a character. For these two ideas I don’t always have a character in mind. I just write scenes with whatever I’m feeling and then tuck those pieces of paper away in my folders. Eventually those scenes (or revised versions of them) end up in books.

I recently got depressed in the middle of December with all the holiday hoopla, a kazillion papers to grade and other school activities, and finishing up edits for my next book. The few times I could sit down to continue working on a brand new story, it calmed me and pushed the stress from my bones. I can’t really explain it any better than that.
In Dance Away, Danger, both the hero and heroine have activities that usually relax them like writing does for me. The heroine, Tessa, is a dancing instructor. She is most confident on a dance floor. The fluid motion of her body relieves whatever stress she faces…usually. The hero, Matt, is a carpenter. He mostly keeps to himself, but when the world tries to knock him down he retreats to his workroom and makes some piece of furniture. The rhythmic movements of creating something new and knowing he’s in control fill him with a peaceful feeling.

Unfortunately in Dance Away, Danger neither one of them can rely on their activities for comfort. They’re more concerned with staying alive.

What about you? Do you have an activity that gets you as giddy as a kid and always brings a smile to your face? What about it makes your world complete?

I hope you’ll follow me this coming week. I’m touring several blogs and sharing something different about Dance Away, Danger each day. If you leave comments anywhere along the way, you’ll be in the running for a Dance Away, Danger prize pack! You can even find out more about my 2014 Danger Challenge, which asks YOU to step out of your comfort zone this year to make a difference in other people’s lives and your own.

1/7-8- Just Romantic Suspense
1/9- Get Lost in a Story
1/10- RomCon
1/11- JF Ridgely’s Blog
1/12- Happily Ever After Thoughts
1/13-SJ Maylee’s Blog
1/14- Gretchen Rix’s Blog
1/15- All Romance Ebooks