Today, Cecilia Dominic is visiting my blog to talk about her upcoming Steampunk romance, Eros Element. I will be joining Cecilia and other guests on Facebook on August 25th for the Eros Element Release Party, where we’ll be having lots of fun and giving away prizes. Make sure you RSVP to join us!
Take it away, Cecilia!
GUEST BLOG – Cecilia Dominic
Thank you for hosting me today, Megan!
One of the more popular features on my Random Writings blog is Characters on the Couch, which is a way for writers to get help with unpublished characters and/or introduce their published characters to readers in a unique way. Since Eros Element is coming out next Tuesday, I thought it would be fun to bring Edward and Iris in for a session.
1. If your character were to go to a psychologist – willingly or unwillingly – what would bring them in? Yes, a court order is a valid answer.
Edward, looking at Iris: Why are we here? I have work to do.
Iris, patting his hand: We’re here to talk to the doctor. Your chairman thought it would be a good idea.
Edward: About what? I’m not ill. What kind of doctor is she? And why is she wearing trousers? (whispering) I can see her arms and her ankles, and I don’t think she’s wearing a corset. It’s quite shocking, but I bet Johann would like her.
Iris: She’s a doctor of the mind, and she’s probably more comfortable in those clothes. Have you noticed how hot Atlanta is? They’d probably work better on a dig, too.
2. Is the presenting problem one of the main internal or external conflicts in your book? If so, how does it present itself?
Edward, frowning: There’s nothing wrong with my mind. I’ve solved my problems by living according to scientific principles of order and predictability. Being here isn’t part of my schedule, and it’s time for my morning tea. Do you have any tea, doctor?
CD: I have teabags and an electric kettle.
Edward, brightening: Oh, an electric kettle! How fascinating. And why is your tea in bags?
Iris, flexing her hands: It must be hard to listen to people’s secrets all day and know so much about them. Doesn’t it make you uncomfortable?
3. It’s always interesting to see how people act when they first enter my office. Do they immediately go for my chair, hesitate before sitting anywhere, flop on the couch, etc.? What would your character do?
Edward would immediately look out of the window, fascinated by how high up my tenth floor office is. Iris would look at the knick knacks on my shelves, perhaps tracing my jade dragon with a finger, before sitting primly on the sofa.
4. Does your character talk to the therapist? How open/revealing will your character be? What will he or she say first?
Edward: If I’m here because Chairman Kluge wants me to be, then I’m not saying anything. Like I said, there’s nothing wrong with me that I haven’t already fixed. It’s not my fault that people don’t realize how my method is the best one for maximizing productive thought. Doctor, are you interested in knowing how I came to this conclusion?
CD: Yes, very.
Edward: I tried to court a woman once, and she lied to me, thought I was my older brother the duke. I indulged in the silly emotion of heartbreak and got myself back to normal through science. That’s the only way to live.
Iris: I thought you weren’t going to say anything.
Edward: Well, it might help her other patients. I can’t imagine she really knows what she’s doing. A doctor of the mind? Have you ever heard of such a thing?
Iris, looking at CD, tears welling in her eyes: Well, she might be able to help me. I’ve had to keep my father’s death a secret, and it’s eating away at me. I can see why there’s a period of mourning, but what do you do when you can’t have it?
5. Your character walks into the bar down the street after his/her first therapy session. What does he/she order? What happens next?
I can see Edward and Iris going into JavaMonkey, the coffee shop where I’ll be having my physical release party on August 29 (link for more info and RSVP). They’ll probably order tea, although Iris might eye the wine list.
6. When you’re building characters, do you have any tricks you use to really get into their psyches, like a character interview or personality system (e.g., Myers-Briggs types)?
For this series, I typed the characters by taking the Myers-Briggs type indicator as each one and then went through an interview for each of them. It really helped to do that all at the beginning so I could know how their development fit the story and series arc. Consequently, although each book ends with a resolution and not a cliffhanger, they continue to grow throughout the series.
Eros Element will be released on August 25. If you’re not in the Atlanta area and can’t make the physical tea party on August 29, I’ll be celebrating the release virtually on August 25 on my Facebook page. Megan and other authors will be helping me celebrate and give away prizes. Here’s the link with more info and the author appearance schedule (subject to change).
If love is the ivy, secrets are the poison.
Aether Psychics, Book 1
After enduring heartbreak at the hands of a dishonest woman, Edward Bailey lives according to scientific principles of structure and predictability. Just the thought of stepping outside his strict routine raises his anxiety.
Adding to his discomfort is Iris McTavish, who appears at his school’s faculty meeting in place of her world-famous archeologist father. Worse, the two of them are to pose as Grand Tourists while they search for an element that will help harness the power of aether.
Iris jumps at the opportunity to prove her worth as a scholar—and avoid an unwanted marriage proposal—while hiding the truth of her father’s whereabouts. If her secret gets out, the house of McTavish will fall into ruin.
Quite unexpectedly, Edward and Iris discover a growing attraction as their journey takes them to Paris and Rome, where betrayal, blackmail and outright theft threaten to destroy what could be a revolutionary discovery—and break their hearts.
Warning: Allergen alert! This book was produced in a facility that handles copious amounts of wine, tea and baked goods. May contain one or more of the following: a spirited heroine, a quirky hero, clever banter, interesting facts both made-up and historical, and lots of secrets. It is, however, gluten free.
Barnes & Noble: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/eros-element-cecilia-dominic/1121969555?ean=9781619230002
Google Books: https://play.google.com/store/books/details/Cecilia_Dominic_Eros_Element?id=hR51CQAAQBAJ
Samhain Publishing: https://www.samhainpublishing.com/book/5545/eros-element
Cecilia Dominic wrote her first story when she was two years old and has always had a much more interesting life inside her head than outside of it. She became a clinical psychologist because she’s fascinated by people and their stories, but she couldn’t stop writing fiction. The first draft of her dissertation, while not fiction, was still criticized by her major professor for being written in too entertaining a style. She made it through graduate school and got her PhD, started her own practice, and by day, she helps people cure their insomnia without using medication. By night, she blogs about wine and writes fiction she hopes will keep her readers turning the pages all night. Yes, she recognizes the conflict of interest between her two careers, so she writes and blogs under a pen name. She lives in Atlanta, Georgia with one husband and two cats, which, she’s been told, is a good number of each. She also enjoys putting her psychological expertise to use helping other authors through her Characters on the Couch blog post series.
You can find her at:
Web page: http://www.ceciliadominic.com
Wine blog: http://www.randomoenophile.com