by Frances Housden
The early idea for this blog was something with a humorous vein, but for a dark medieval romantic series that began with a ‘Curse’ you can see the irony. It took me until book three ‘The Chieftain’s Feud’ to come up with any sort of high concept for them—‘Game of Thrones’ meets ‘Outlander’.
So back to book one ‘The Chieftain’s Curse’. That began with Morag Farquhar, her son Rob and our cursed hero, Euan McArthur. Strangely enough I hadn’t intended their story to be the first in a series yet as I wrote, all these interesting but unexpected characters began to show up. Starting off with Nhaimeth, then Jamie, then Gavyn all of whom—now that I’ve finished the series with book six—have had their own happy ending. Like they say about life—one thing leads to another.
Gavyn Farquhar, ‘Chieftain by Command’ who popped up in the last third of the first book as Morag’s long lost brother, took me and my readers on a wild chase in book two. An adventure that incidentally doesn’t end until book six, Chieftain’s Rebel—confused—how do you thinks it felt writing a series that seems to have a life of its own and refuses to tell you what will happen next?
Of course, considering what I put Jamie Ruthven through in Gavyn’s book, I had to fix it by making him the hero in book three, ‘The Chieftain’s Feud’. And I have to admit he deserved a little love after the villainess trampled on his heart in the previous book. As for the other lads, Rob and Nhaimeth, their turns came in ‘Chieftain in the Making’. I will admit I wasn’t particularly easy on Rob, and as for Nhaimeth—a favourite with readers—I always thought he deserved to have his own sweet romance. That said, weaving all their different threads together into one picture was difficult, but ‘very’ satisfying, especially as this book also managed to point me in the direction of a potential second series.
I had to be very careful with the time-line while using historical facts, waiting until my characters grew old enough to fit the plot, which was particularly true of book five, my November release and Maggie McArthur’s story. If you read book one, you will remember she was the baby born to Morag and Euan at the end of The Chieftain’s Curse. I brought her back again as a tomboyish teenager—more interested in swordplay than needlework—in ‘The Chieftain’s Daughter‘. I will admit I’m not always kind to my heroes and heroines, but I did love writing Maggie’s story. Perhaps that’s why I was slightly easier on her—slightly.
In November I will have five books in The Chieftain Series available at all the usual sites through Escape Publishing, with one more book to come ‘Chieftain’s Rebel’, this is Gavyn’s son Rory’s story—‘Chieftain’s Rebel’ out in March. So where do we go from there? I’m not exactly certain but if it’s anything like the other books in my Chieftain Series I’m sure it will be an adventure.