Archive for the ‘Stephanie Burkhart’ Category

Author Intro - Exploring the Canvas of Words, Stephanie Burkhart

Wednesday, September 16th, 2009

Me at the LA County Fair, 2009

When I was six, my muse paid me my first visit.  She was a small thing with curly hair, pointy ears, and happy bubbles. I loved hanging out with her.  We used to sit down and watch “The Electric Company” together. Afterwards she would help make Spiderman comic books with box figures.  Ah, the young!  That was my first attempt at writing.

 

My muse took me to the local library where she liked to show me books.  “Read this,” she’d say, or “You’ll like that.”  I developed a fondness for The Hardy Boys, Nancy Drew, and Judy Blume.  My muse said, “Steph, in order to be a good writer, you’ve got to read a lot.”  I was game for that.

 

In high school, I discovered Victoria Holt, VC Andrews, and Anne Rice. I loved Shakespeare. “Romeo and Juliet” was my favorite play. Who didn’t want to be Juliet, so they could find their Romeo? My muse said it was okay to want to be Juliet.  Romeo didn’t die in real life. 

 

In 1986, I decided I wanted a grand adventure and joined the army as an MP.  My muse thought it would be cool to go with me.  I was sent to Germany. In 1988, I went on the Berlin Orientation Tour when I won soldier of the quarter for my battalion.  While my adventure to Berlin was relatively uneventful, my muse recognized its importance. “This is it, Steph - your first novel.” I smiled.

 

It took approximately ten years, but “Destination: Berlin,” became my first novel. It was originally published in 2001.  My heroine, Corporal Sharon Cates, is stranded in Communist East Germany when the duty train to Berlin derails.  She must travel to Berlin on foot with the help of a Soviet soldier, Jr. Sgt. Dimitri Nagory.  The Midwest Book Review called Destination: Berlin “a taunt military action/adventure.”  There’s always an undercurrent of romance in my stories, and in “Destination: Berlin,” Sharon and Dimitri nurture a sweet romance between them.

 

Cover to my novel, published 2001

 

 

 

Next, I tackled contemporary romance with “All That Remains,” and its sequel, “Are Your Dirty Little Secrets.”  Darrin Banning is a handsome, yet troubled widower who meets a feisty lawyer, Kristina Rivera.  She rekindles the flames of love that he thought had been extinguished in his heart.  Darrin and Kristina explore a sophisticated romance in these two books, meeting challenges that might drive other couples apart, especially when their son is diagnosed with hemophilia.  Both novels were well received, and “Dirty Little Secrets” was selected as an Editor’s Choice pick by IUniverse.

 

In “Across The Fickle Winds of History,” I explore time travel and romance. My hero, Paul Kerensky, travels back in time to protect Olga Romanov, the eldest daughter of Czar Nicholas II, when she’s named the heir presumptive to the throne.  The romance in “History,” meets the sweet and sensual criteria for CRR, as Paul and Olga experience the first pangs of true love.

 

My last book, “The Wolf’s Torment,” was a blend of fantasy, paranormal, and romance genres.  Set in Romania in 1866, Crown Prince Mihai Sigmaringen is a boy who must become a man when his best friend, Viktor, is bitten by a werewolf.  Having been hurt by his first love, Alexandra, Mihai slowly falls in love with wife, Theresa, as outside forces conspire to keep them apart.  Lee Gooden from ForeWord Clarion Reviews applauds the sophisticated romance in “The Wolf’s Torment,” which enfolds between Mihai and Theresa. He also makes a favorable comparisons to Anne Rice’s “Mayfair Witches,” and the story’s dark Arthurian undertones.

 

I also like to challenge my short story talents by entering into the Writer’s Digest Annual and Popular Fiction contests.  My short story, “Spontaneous Decision,” won 8th place in the Mainstream/Literary category in the Writer’s Digest 77th Annual Competition.  This was a delight to me, considering I don’t think mainstream/literary is my strongest genre.

 

Recently, I’ve gotten back to my romantic roots which were inspired by Victoria Holt.  My next project is a paranormal romance set in 1901 that takes place in England and Hungary.  My hero, Count Matthias Duma, is a werewolf who finds himself falling in love with a young British woman.  “The Hungarian” is a sophisticated romance and while it deals with werewolves, what I enjoyed the most about writing it, is exploring the more psychological aspect of the transformation on the human psyche.  “The Hungarian” is due to be released by Desert Breeze Publishing in May 2010.

 

I also have a children’s book, “The Giving Meadow,” due out in the spring of 2010 with 4RV Publishing.  I originally wrote it as a play for my church’s “little church” program for the kids.  I was thrilled knowing that Viv from 4RV wanted to publish it, because I didn’t think children’s stories was a strong genre for me.

 

My canvas is full of plots and stories. I try to dab in a little gothic, stroke in a slash of the paranormal, (my preferred paranormal creature is the werewolf) and the canvas I create is a delicate balance of light and dark with stories that exude with the soft sunbeams of sophisticated romance.

 

Bless my muse, she’s a little taller these days, and the ears are more rounded, but she’s still with me.  Her name?  Juliet. She’s still looking for her Romeo…

 

If you want to find out more about my stories, my writing, or my time in Germany, you can visit my website at: http://sgcardin.tripod.com. I put out a monthly newsletter that you can subscribe to on at my official website. You can find my books, “Destination: Berlin,” All That Remains,” “Are Your Dirty Little Secrets,” and “The Wolf’s Torment,” at http://www.iuniverse.com.  You can find “Across The Fickle Winds of History,” at http://www.lulu.com

 

I also blog at http://sgcardin.blogspot.com.  Pop on over when you can. I’d love to see you and say “Hi.”  I don’t think Juliet would mind either. **smiles**

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