Thursday, March 21, 2013

Lost in a Story... Why I love or hate Julia Spencer-Flemming

I wish this blog was going to be about me being lost in my current WIP. How I was so enraptured with my characters I couldn’t stand being away from them so I was writing constantly. How I was so enthralled with the plot and where it was going I couldn’t wait to write the next page and the next page and the next chapter.
This blog is sadly not about that. It is instead about the series of books I’m reading. I heard Sarah Wendell from Smart Bitches in a podcast talking about reading books in a series and reading them all in row without a break. She said the one time she had done this without a problem was the Julia Spencer-Flemming books. Interested I looked up the series of Russ Von Alstyn and Clare Fergusson.
She’s an Episcopalian priest, he’s the chief of police. Strangely they solve crimes together in a way that you actually believe and through the process they fell in love. Deeply irrevocably in love. Small hitch. He’s happily married to a woman he won’t be unfaithful to and of course being a priest she refuses to be the cause that ends his marriage.
This is why straying from romance is always a risk. Because when I say I got sucked in by this couple, so hard and so quickly that’s an understatement. I’ve read four books in six days in this series. I had to buy books in advance, and go to the end, just to see how long and how heartbroken I was going to be. And because it’s not a romance I have no guarantee of an HEA as the series progress which as a romance reader could be catastrophic.
Because I’m lost in this story. This happens every once and while where I get so captured I can’t think about anything else, watch anything else or write about anything else. I have to know what happens to Russ and Clare. I have to know if they can survive the myriad of obstacles being placed in front of them.
I can’t read fast enough. My emotions are dependent on where they are in the story. And currently I’m reading about an absolutely heartbreaking moment in their relationship that I have no idea how Julia is possibly going to allow them to recover from. (But I bought books ahead so I know they do… phew!) I love Julia Flemming for giving me these characters, but I also hate her too because she's breaking my heart. (Not really hate... more like loving hate.)
Anyway I think it’s this experience that made me want to be a writer most of all. The feeling that I could fall so far into fiction that I could sit on a couch for eight or nine hours at a stretch immersing myself in this author’s world.

One day I hope to be able to do that for readers. To write something so emotional, so compelling that they simply can’t put the book down and if they do they’re counting the hours until they can pick it up again.
I’ve got about five and a half hours left of work before it’s back to Russ and Clare.

Five hours… twenty-nine minutes.


Molly O'Keefe said...

I've heard so much great stuff about this series - but my reluctance to try it is summed up in your blog. HOW IS THIS GOING TO WORK OUT!?

But I imagine I will succumb soon. I need a good glom. My last one - Lisa Kleypas' old historicals, has petered out.

Maureen McGowan said...

There's nothing like a series where the characters are so great they pull you along through multiple books. Thanks for the recommendation!

And... it's time to vote for Molly's bracket in the DABWAHA! Go!

Anonymous said...

Blogger hates me today...

Excited to glom a new series and even more excited to talk about them exhaustively over wine!

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