This is a somewhat unique Book Block in that it's actually for an anthology written by six romance authors. Heidi Kneale sent this in on behalf of all six of them, and so I'm happy to share her words with you. Having sold a number of anthologies for John Joseph Adams, I'm always interested in how other editors work to put together their anthologies.
Written by Heidi Kneale
Title: The Enchanted Faerie
Publisher: The Wild Rose Press
Release Date: ebook: 22 November 2008; print: 27 February 2009
When editor Cheryl Wright invited six romance authors (the Romance Spinners) to participate in a themed anthology, she didn't just give us a vague theme and turn us loose. She gave us a detailed challenge in the form of a couple of quandaries--rather risky ones. We accepted, for the higher the stakes, the higher the payoff, which would mean reader satisfaction. And we want happy readers.
Our Book Block was how each one of us would meet that challenge.
Premise: In 1678 Scotland, the Gypsy Alishandra has an Enchanted Faerie that can help a maiden find true love. She will lend this faerie to anyone who can meet her price.
First Quandary: Alishandra demands the price of one hundred gold pieces. This is a prohibitively expensive price. How on earth were our characters going to lay their hands on money like that? None of them were rich ladies, only common lasses who were lucky if they'd ever seen a gold coin in their young lives.
They had to be enterprising and clever. Each story had different ways of gaining the coins: gifted, stolen, earned, borrowed, and even a life was mortgaged. For the price of a hundred gold, the faerie could be had. And some characters paid a dear, dear price.
Second Quandary: After the faerie did its work, Alishandra demanded it back, for the faerie was not bought, only borrowed for a while. Sure, the faerie could help find true love, but unless the faerie was restored to its rightful owner, it could take that love away just as quickly. If the faerie was not returned, madness and death would follow. So, faeries went missing, were stolen, deadlines loomed and curses were about to descend and loved ones about to die. High stakes indeed.
The double-whammy of acquiring the faerie then needing to return her kept our characters on the edge. Just because our heroines found true love was no guarantee they would keep it.
The theme offered us one more challenge: with such specific guidelines, would our stories be different enough from one another? Thankfully, yes. Sure, each character had to get the gold, get the faerie, find love and return the faerie, but each author handled her story with a unique approach, making each short story stand on its own.
Where To Buy The Book: E-book from Wild Rose Press
Romance Spinners' Website: www.romancespinners.com