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Book out today!

Aug. 23rd, 2010 | 12:01 pm

My debut novel, The Sergeant's Lady, released today and is available just about anywhere ebooks are sold, including:

Directly from my publisher's site

Amazon's Kindle store

Barnes & Noble

Powell's

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An excerpt from my novel!

Jun. 23rd, 2010 | 10:26 am

The Sergeant's Lady is just two months from its release day, and I've posted an excerpt on my blog:

http://authorsusannafraser.blogspot.com/2010/06/two-months-to-release-dayand-excerpt.html

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My Susanna Fraser blog

Apr. 14th, 2010 | 08:35 am

Please stop by my new author blog! Today I talk about casting my novel, and I've got pictures of Nathan Fillion and Sean Bean...

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I am an AUTHOR!

Apr. 12th, 2010 | 07:21 pm

I am thrilled to be able to announce my first sale! Carina Press has offered to buy my historical romance, THE SERGEANT'S LADY, and I've decided to accept. I'll be writing under the pen name Susanna Fraser--Susanna because I've always wished my parents had chosen it instead of Susan, and Fraser because one of my 18th century ancestors was a Fraser, and I decided anything on the family tree was fair game!

I don't have a release date yet, but I just couldn't sit on the secret any longer. I've established a blog under my new name, and I'm going to get to work making a name for my alter ego.

More about my first book:

In the spring of 1809, Scottish heiress Anna Arrington married in haste and followed her husband to the battlefields of Portugal and Spain, hoping that life with a dashing cavalry officer would bring her the adventure and significance she always longed for. Two miserable
years later, she’s had ample leisure to repent. Her husband falsely believes she has betrayed him, and he blames her for failing to give him a child.

After he dies, Anna wants nothing more than to return to the sanctuary of her ancestral home and never seek adventure again. But fate has other plans for her.

She joins a wagon convoy of wounded bound for Lisbon, where she plans to take ship for home, but along the way they are ambushed and captured by the French. When a half-mad enemy officer assaults her, she is rescued by Sergeant Will Atkins, a common soldier of uncommon intelligence and bravery. Will has always had a chivalrous streak, but little does he suspect that this time his warrior’s instinct to protect a woman in peril will change his life forever.

Will and Anna escape into the countryside to take word of the ambush to their army. On the four-day journey, after fighting off bandits and French cavalry together, they discover that they are kindred spirits and yield to the passion that has grown between them. But their world does not allow a mere sergeant to raise his eyes to a wealthy viscount’s daughter. Falling in love will challenge them to take on the greatest adventure either has known.

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Looking for a few good faces...

Feb. 10th, 2010 | 11:30 pm

I'm in the early brainstorming phase of a Brand! New! Novel! and am looking for some faces to help me envision my characters, maybe do a little collage. Problem is, I can't think of the right actors/celebrities/etc. for two of the major ones. So...

I need a very fair, blonde young woman who's more cute than beautiful--you know, dainty/delicate features rather than classic or regal. Sort of an old-school Disney princess brought to life, but with a faint hint of melancholy.

I also need a young man, preferably in his 20's or early 30's. Black or dark brown hair, preferably blue or gray eyes. All-around strong features, and if he could have sticky-out ears and a big nose, but in a sexy way, so much the better. Should look like he's capable of being a badass. Ioan Gruffudd is fairly close, now that I think of it, if I just make his eyes blue in my imagination. ::checks Hornblower icon:: Yeah, that's real close, but I'm open to other suggestions. I haven't been in the Brand! New! Novel! stage in YEARS, so why not have a little fun shopping for hotties?

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Can't believe I'm asking this, but...

Jan. 15th, 2010 | 06:52 pm

...anyone know where to find good Castle fanfic?

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My favorite books of 2009

Jan. 2nd, 2010 | 08:47 pm

Crossposted with my blog...

2009 wasn't my best reading year ever. While I didn't keep a tally, I think I finished fewer books than normal, quite possibly falling short of 100. Partly that's because I was busy with work and writing, but I also started more than my share of books that I couldn't bring myself to finish. I've become entirely too picky. If there's a historical error, a cliched plot device or character, or more than a handful of awkward phrases in the opening chapter, that's it.

So one of my resolutions for the new year is to try to offer other authors the same grace I hope to be granted once I'm finally published. I'm not going to read a book that bores or offends me, or one whose flaws outweigh its virtues. Life is too short to read bad books. But during that all-important opening chapter, I'm going to look for reasons to keep reading a book rather than reasons to cast it aside.

That said, here are my ten favorites of the books I finished last year, listed in reverse order of completion.

1. Carbonel: the King of the Cats (Barbara Sleigh, 1955). One of many children's books I never read as a child, since I skipped straight to the adult section of the library when I was 9 or 10. Set in post-WWII England and stylistically reminiscent of the Chronicles of Narnia.

2. Refuse to Choose (Barbara Sher, 2007). Self-help for people with too many interests to focus on just one.

3. An Echo in the Bone (Diana Gabaldon, 2009). Being the further adventures of Jamie and Claire Fraser in the American Revolution. What's not to love?

4. The Unlikely Disciple (Kevin Roose, 2009). A Brown student spends a semester at Liberty University. My favorite of the half dozen or so outsider accounts of the evangelical subculture I've read over the past few years.

5. Naamah's Kiss (Jacqueline Carey, 2009). First book in a new sexy epic fantasy trilogy set in the same world as Carey's two Kushiel trilogies.

6. The Graveyard Book (Neil Gaiman, 2008). Just a beautifully written and moving single-volume fantasy.

7. Quiverfull: Inside the Christian Patriarchy Movement (Kathryn Joyce, 2009). I write alternative history, and the quiverfull movement feels like MY alternative history, since 15 or 20 years ago some of the people I was around preached male headship in the church and marriage, eschewal of birth control, etc. I never liked the ideas, but some of them made a semi-convincing case it was what God wanted for us...so the part of me that believes in parallel universes wonders if somewhere out there there's a version of me in a patriarchal marriage raising a brood of 10 or 12 children. So I've developed a strange fascination with the life I might've lived if I'd made different choices. This book is a good intro to the movement.

8. Wellington: Pillar of State (Elizabeth Longford, 1972). Longford's is the best Wellington biography out there, IMO. This is the second volume, recounting the Great Duke's post-Waterloo life and work, and while Wellington the politician is much less appealing to me than Wellington the commander, this is still a lovely biography...and a useful reminder in an overly politicized world that those with whom I disagree can still be honorable, well-meaning, and decent individuals.

9. The Sharing Knife: Horizon (Lois McMaster Bujold, 2009). Final volume in a thoroughly delightful romantic fantasy series. Maybe 2010 will be the year I finally try the Vorkosigan books.

10. Forever Princess (Meg Cabot, 2009). OK, I admit it. I love the Princess Diaries series. Pure well-executed fun.

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Crosscultural fantasy and historical fiction done right?

Nov. 23rd, 2009 | 09:15 am

My muse has provided me with plot bunnies for two series both involving interaction between European and Asian cultures circa 1800. One is the type of fantasy where every nation has an obvious real-world equivalent (think Jacqueline Carey's Kushiel series), the other is straight historical adventure fiction. I really, really love both ideas, and I've never liked to limit myself to writing what I already know, but I'm aware that crosscultural stories, particularly by white authors, are often packed with offensive stereotypes.

So...given that I'm not planning to tackle either idea for a few years yet, any recommendations of authors who do such stories well? Obviously I'll do plenty of proper nonfiction research, but good fiction is a useful inspiration, too.

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Talking Firefly with a 5-year-old

Nov. 21st, 2009 | 09:07 am

Annabel, responding to something on TV: A story about a cowboy?

Me: Why not? I've even seen a story about space cowboys.

Annabel: What would space cowboys do?

Me (realizing the futility of explaining Firefly's set-up to AB): Herd cows in space, I guess.

Annabel: Well, that would just be the cow that jumped over the moon.

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If only more people did this...

Aug. 7th, 2009 | 11:56 am

Hillary Clinton demonstrates the appropriate response to John Bolton's opinions

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