BEHIND THE SCENES
It’s a strange experience to come to the last book of a series. Now, here’s a secret. When I conceived of the Wild Ride to Love series, it was “planes, trains, and automobiles”—and it was going to be three novellas in one anthology, about three older sisters coming home for their baby sister’s wedding. But my editor at the time, whether by mistake or design, said something about four books. And I thought, “Sure, I can make it four books!”
After all, there were four sisters. Now all I needed was another mode of transportation that’s romantic and sexy, and what better than “the love boat” – i.e., a cruise ship?
But conceiving of four books led to an interesting challenge. My initial premise was that baby sister Merilee was the one Fallon sister who’d always been lucky in love. I thought that, when her big sisters came home for her wedding, some of that lucky magic might brush off along the journey and they, too, would find the loves of their lives.
Well, yes, that did happen, as those of you who have read Sex Drive (Theresa’s “planes” romance), Love, Unexpectedly (Kat’s “trains” seduction), and His, Unexpectedly (Jenna’s “automobiles” journey) well know.
But what was I going to do about Merilee? We all know that a good story needs conflict, and that in a romance novel we like our heroines and heroes to have to struggle to win their “happily ever after.” Having M&M get married and go off on their honeymoon might be fun and sexy, but it wouldn’t be particularly interesting.
So then I thought about couples who’ve been together forever. Anyone who’s been in a relationship for many, many years knows that it’s hard to sustain the love and the magic. Things change. And how about if you met the love of your life when you were little kids and grew up together? At what point does friendship turn into lust, romance, love – and how do you sustain them?
All very interesting questions! And if you know my writing, you know I love questions like that. So I thought, how’s Merilee, who believes that her one triumph over her sisters is being lucky in love, going to feel when those sisters come home with incredibly sexy, exciting, romantic new relationships? Might she not think, “I want what they’re having!”
So, that’s the premise of this story, and I did enjoy torturing poor M&M as I challenged both of them to truly leave childhood behind and figure out who they are as adults. Sexy adults! Adults who still care about each other, but need to figure out exactly how they care, and whether that’s enough to build a future together.
I hope you’ll join them for their own Wild Ride to Love.
I've loved Mexico since I was a kid, so it was fun "visiting" again with M&M. Here's a flavor of Puerto Vallarta, one of the locations in Yours, Unexpectedly. (Photos by Susan Lyons)