How I Write A Harlequin Special Edition--#Family Themes by Karen Rose Smith





We all come from families who impact who we are, how we think, how we grew, played and learned.
I was an only child but descended from large Italian families. My dad had nine brothers and sisters and my mom had six. Weekends were filled with time with uncles, aunts and cousins. Relationships always fascinated me so I watched the interactions between and among relatives with interest. When I met my husband, I realized our marriage would never just be about him and me. It would be about how the two of us as a couple and later with our son as our own family unit fit together with both sets of our parents.

When I began writing, I had this rich, relationship background to draw on. Not so much specific situations, but the overall feel of how a hero and heroine fit in with their community and the people around them. Love doesn't happen in a vacuum. We bring our past and our present to the one we love. Somehow after the blush of first love, a couple must figure out how their lives and the friends and family in them mesh together. That's important in raising children. 

In writing a Special Edition, I give my hero and heroine center stage. But friends and family provide conflict, character revelation, reasons for opening up about the past, as well as humor. The hero and heroine are the center of the wheel and the focus for each scene. The cast surrounding the wheel provide support, sounding boards and opportunities for secrets to be revealed. Balancing the cast is easy. The book is always about the hero and heroine's thoughts, feelings and journey to loving each other. The other players form the scenery along the way. 

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USA TODAY Bestselling Author Karen Rose Smith is an only child who delved into books at an early age. She learned about kindred spirits from Anne of Green Gables, solved mysteries with Nancy Drew and wished she could have been the rider on The Black Stallion. Yet even though she escaped often into story worlds, she had many aunts, uncles and cousins around her on weekends. Her sense of family and relationships began there. Maybe that's why families are a strong theme in her novels, whether mysteries or romances. Her 95th novel will be released in 2016.

Readers often ask her about her pastimes. She has herb, flowers and vegetable gardens that help her relax. In the winter, she cooks rather than gardens.  And year round she spends most of her time with her husband, as well as her four rescued cats who are her constant companions. They chase rainbows from sun catchers, reminding her life isn't all about work, awards and bestseller lists. Everyone needs that rainbow to chase.

Karen looks forward to interacting with readers. They can find her at the links below. 


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