Long and Short Reviews welcome Dolce, whose contemporary romance Escapade is released today. See the end of the guest post for a way to win a copy of the book.
Hello! My name is Dolce and I’m a fiction writer. My new contemporary romance novel, Escapade, will be released on Monday April 11, 2016 by Dreamspinner Press. I’m very excited to be a guest on Long and Short Reviews!
I wrote Escapade over the course of about five months. It began in a writing challenge where a friend prompted me to write a story about someone needing a date for their ex-boyfriend’s wedding. I didn’t give myself any sort of word count goal per day, though I knew it was going to be novel-length based on the journey I wanted the characters to go on.
I tend to write more at night, but due to my work schedule, I often had to find pockets of time during the day to sneak a thirty-minute writing break in a Starbucks. I think my shoulder is permanently sore from carrying my laptop around. Café workers started to notice that I was always typing things, and I finally earned the honor of baristas remembering my exact order! For the record, I love coconut iced coffee and chocolate chip scones.
I have a background in theatre and music, which makes me moving into writing kind of a shock for family members and friends. They had no idea I was even interested in writing. My writing started very script-like, very barebones, but my style has grown a bit warmer through the years. That said, I still tend to prefer simple. I write in a way that mimics, in my mind, the eye of a camera or the view of an audience. We live in a world where most watch television and films regularly, and I definitely try to tell stories in a similar style.
Escapade was inspired by my own summer reading experiences. When I was younger, I would stock up on romance paperbacks from the library before I went on vacation. There were many different genres and scenarios, but the pairings were only men with women—no same sex couples. I wanted to write a romantic comedy that featured two men falling in love in an exotic, beautiful location with lots of adventure and fun. It might sound silly, but it’s always been a dream of mine to have my book published and available in an airport bookstore. Maybe someone who feels left out by the standard romance novel pairings on the shelf would pick up my book to read on vacation.
Research for Escapade was fun, as it involved beautiful locations and lots of decadence. My family is very much a one vacation per year family, and most of the time our vacation was in-state. It was delightful to have an unlimited budget for accommodations, meals, activities, and wardrobe. Some people who have read it have said they’d love to see it as a movie. If that ever happens, we are going to need quite the budget!
Even thought I’ve never been on a vacation that costs anywhere near what Escapade’s holiday would cost, it was vaguely inspired by that one vacation per year my family takes (which I love with all my heart). We are with other family members the whole time and we usually spend the entire week together in one location, everyone in their own rooms but within walking distance. We eat together, we go to night activities together, we swim together. Some group activities may seem silly, and were even included in Escapade, but it gets to be fun after a while when you can just relax and remember who you truly are. The big group athletic event in Escapade was inspired by something I’ve participated in, though not on the same scale.
Escapade is light and something to read at the beach, but also tackles realistic issues people face. Loneliness, the prick of discomfort you feel when you’re single amongst couples—even if you don’t want a relationship, balancing your personal and professional life, and growing into adulthood with your family.
The main character, Lucas, deals with all of those things. He is wealthy and successful, but in the eyes of his family, he’s still just Lucas. The secondary main character, the charismatic Jack McQueen, deals with the same issues, though he comes from a completely different place compared to Lucas. My hope is that in reading Escapade, readers see both characters growing together to conquer loneliness with love, laughter, and kindness.
Music plays a huge role in Escapade. I love soundtracks and while I wrote Escapade, I listened almost exclusively to music from the eighties. Something about that era of music fit with Escapade. Fun, sexy, a bit silly—songs that when the DJ throws them on, you know all the words (even if you’re a bit tipsy) and want to dance. Here is a link to a playlist I made while writing, that includes lots of songs from my process.
Strangely enough, when I was editing Escapade, I listened to a mix of pieces from the Star Wars soundtracks, especially “Rey’s Theme” “Cantina Band” and “The Imperial March.” I have no idea where that mix came from, but I listened to “Rey’s Theme” for hours on end while editing in a café. Maybe that’s why one of my next planned projects has to do with a futuristic world!
So! What’s your favorite holiday you’ve ever been on? Where would you want to go? I’m in New York and it’s chilly, so I’m dying for a vacation someplace warm right now. Maybe…Hawaii? That sounds good to me!
Leave a comment about your dream vacation for a chance to win an Escapade eBook! I will randomly select the winner in three days.
Thank you for reading my guest post! I hope you enjoy Escapade.
Twenty-nine-year-old Lucas Thompson is at the top of the corporate ladder. But when his lifelong friend and ex-boyfriend invites him to his last-minute destination wedding in the Bahamas, Lucas realizes his corporate success can’t hide his private loneliness. Nor will he be able to escape seeing his family at the wedding—and having to explain, yet again, why he’s rich, handsome… and still single.
Fate and a taxi ride change everything when Lucas meets the charismatic and clever Jack McQueen, who just so happens to be a male escort. Jack’s presence on Lucas’s arm at the wedding keeps questions at bay, but their pretend relationship turns into something more after ten days of sun, sand, and sex. And before the trip is up, both men will discover that what started as a simple escapade in paradise might just lead to their very own happily ever after.
About the Author:Dolce is a thirty year old New Yorker who loves to write, cook, sing, and laugh. She got her start writing fan fiction and is excited, and a touch frightened, to make the jump to original fiction. She is a big fan of the band Muse, who inspired her to choose a single word for her pen name: DOLCE. Plus, Cher has the one name thing going for her, too. Everyone loves Cher.