During one of those unguarded moments scrolling through my newsfeed on Facebook my eye was caught by the phrase, “this sounds like fun!” Uh oh. Weak moment – instant response – “Where do I find out about it?” And so it went. However, I did meet some really interesting people and now I am a guest blogger in places as far off as Wales and Australia. My guest is from right here in the good ol’ U S of A. In fact from New York, I have Ms. Y Correa herself and here is her internet home: http://ycorreafb.blogspot.com/ and http://fatebooks.yolasite.com/
After getting all the rest of us up and running she was a bit stumped for her own piece, I asked her to post something about her current release, Marco Antonio & Amaryllis. After all, there are several posts in the Alcove about historical fiction, a few on research, and a few things on what makes a good story when it’s wrapped around an event in history. This is what she had to say.
Introducing Ms. Y Correa ~
Truly, at heart I am a Paranormal Romance reader. I love all things Paranormal (Alright, maybe except for Vampires and Werewolves…!), yet I’ve also had a lifelong fascination for Historical Romance stories. More specifically Medieval times, Ancient Egyptian and Ancient Greek Mythology.
Those are eras that have always caught my attention. So, upon choosing a story to read, I tend to always lean to those genres.
My biggest issue had always been finding stories that combined all of those elements. They are incredibly hard to find.
I was born and raised in the state of New York, which is a melting pot of culture and diversity. Every day people interact with each other no matter what their race, creed and color. “Multicultural”, is simply a way of life. This is how I was raised – to appreciate everyone’s individuality and respect their differences.
The day I decided to write a story, for me, it was only natural that this every day diversity that I knew so well be incorporated into the story. This is how I developed my style of writing.
The day I started writing “Marco Antonio and Amaryllis”, I played on my own personal knowledge of the Spanish culture (being Hispanic myself), as well as a specific time in history.
Doing some research (which took no time at all) I came across the Anglo-Spanish war of 1585. During this time the English invaded Spain: and I thought to myself that this time in history would be ideal for writing an Interracial Medieval story.
I simply knew that if in THIS day and time there are so many interracial couples, they MUST have existed in that time as well. Only, in that time, it must have been frowned upon and taboo, as most people fear what they cannot understand.
Immediately, upon starting my venture, my natural affinity for the paranormal simply meshed into the story. I played on the beliefs of the people from that time. Many of them lived in perpetual fear of witch-craft and things of that sort.
Just like that, the story simply came to life and “Marco Antonio and Amaryllis” was born. The original manuscript had been written in Elizabethan English, however realizing that many people today have a hard time understanding that method of speech, I changed it to modern English while keeping the Medieval feel and content. There are some Spanish notes in the story, and those were written in Medieval Spanish. Our language too, has changed throughout the years.
Stories like the well know and admired classic “Romeo & Juliet” inspired me, as well as “The Romance of Tristan and Isolde”, “Stardust” the novel, was another great inspiration. Withal, I remained true to my roots and heritage and tried to portray the diversity of the people of that time as best I could.
It may seem odd, but as I was writing (much like it happened with all of my stories prior), my characters took on a life of their own. They came to thriving life, and it very much felt like they were the ones narrating the story to me, and I was the privileged individual whom they’d chosen to write their story.
Following is an Excerpt:
His focus returned to her. What cruelty life offered him, that his one true love was unattainable. Yet, obtaining her was his only conviction – his only mission and obsession. She was in fact the most beautiful woman he’d ever known both inside and out. She’d yet to fully be his. But he was certain, that one day, she would be his – totally and completely. He would fight for her until he exhaled his last breath. Even if that were the very cost.
However, for today, he’d be content (as he always was) with just looking at her from afar. Contemplate her beauty and know – in the depths of his soul – that this was a battle worth fighting.
“Altivo, stop! Para!”, digging his front hooves into the dirt Altivo came to a screeching halt. MarcoAntonio had been so preoccupied in his train of thought, that he’d barely realized that they’d arrived. His body slightly thrust forward with the abrupt stop. He leaped off his horse, checked his hip for his sword and took in hand his ebony shield. Even though it was the middle of the night, time and space was never to be trusted. Things lurked everywhere. In his experience, he knew that the most unexpected things could happen, at any given moment. It was always best to be prepared.
Unhinging a small sack from Altivo’s saddle, he tossed it lightly in his hand. These small jewels were what he used as pebbles, to toss at the balcony of her quarters. What use did he have for them anyway? He owned millions. Yet, he wanted none. So, why not use a precious stone to tap the window of his precious treasure…?
Tossing the first blood ruby, he called – his Spanish accent as natural as the air he breathed, “Psst!” no answer. He tossed another, this time an emerald, as green as the forest, “Psst! Amaryllis! I am here…”, he called out again in a strong whisper. He listened. He heard some rustling around.
The first thing that he caught a glimpse of was her hair as it came floating over the edge of the balcony wall, and grazed the ledge. Then her head leaned over, and she looked down….
There they were! Those eyes! That smile! Enough to melt even the coldest of hearts. Everything about her made his heart skip a beat. Her long luscious, silky hair, that was the perfect combination of fire and ice all neatly intertwined into the most vivid shades of red and gold. Her bright, sea blue eyes which seemed to carry the entirety of the ocean within them. The milky brilliance of her skin. The birthmark that was placed just above her lip, which seemed to be set in just the right spot to accent her lips and all of her beauty to perfection. Her body! That alone was enough to make any goddess jealous. She was not too thin: MarcoAntonio appreciated a woman that looked healthy. Amaryllis was just right, in every way. At least in his opinion.
“You are late…!”, she pointed out.
“Well, that may be true ma’ lady,”
“’Tis!”, she said in a teasing tone, then smiled again, “You cannot stay long. I’m being watched.”
“And?”, he replied with mockery lingering in his voice.
Amaryllis giggled a little, covering her mouth she tried her best to keep quiet. His wit always made her laugh. Then she quickly got serious, “MarcoAntonio, ’tis dangerous. You know this to be true. ‘Tis always a risk to visit me at these hours, my love.”
“And this is precisely why I love her so!”, he stated bravely as if he spoke to an audience, “Amidst everything, my beautiful lady, is always concerned for the well-being of her knight…. Knight, may I remind, ma’ lady!”
“A knight, that appears to be looking for trouble, should our foes become aware of his scrambling.”
“Let them become aware!” he raised his voice, still with lightness and taunting sounding in it, “Should they come, I will slay them…!” he pulled his sword from his hip and began a little dance. Bouncing around, sword in hand, he swung it in the air as if he were fencing against the strongest of men, “I will give them a little of this! Then… a little of that!” He jumped in Altivo’s direction, “And my trusted steed, shall save me, and whisk me away into the darkness of night,” then he turned to look up at her, “of course, never, before first having valiantly saved, ma’ lady.”, then tossing his arm into a whirl in front of him, he bowed at her graciously.
Amaryllis giggled some more, covering her mouth with a hand, “You shall never change: will you?”
“Why should I, ma’ lady? If I change then I shall lose my most precious treasure… your love,”
“Well, I suppose that is true, noble sir.”
“’Tis, ma’ lady.” and he smiled at her.
Now – my blogs are rather diverse in this case. For Rachel Rippon I wrote a blog that was a bit biographical. It tells a bit about my published book, “Who I Am Yesterday,” and described my work in progress “Why Me.” You can find Rachael in all kinds of places, here are a few:
http://rachaelrippon.blogspot.com.au/ (where the post will be).
My second blog was on a much lighter note. Lucinda Elliot has a lovely lighthearted blog that talks of gothic tales and heroes that are allowed to have runny noses and heroines that are allowed to have some strength of character. For her I wrote a bit about one of my favorite authors, Clive Cussler and his series starring Isaac Bell. Staged in the early 20th century, this series has the type of characters I thought would be right at home in Lucinda’s world. A fan of Shakespeare and a citizen of Wales, she can be found on here: http://sophieandemile.wordpress.com/posts-page/ (where the post will be)