I have been reading romance novels since the age of fourteen.
Regency romances are one of my all-time favorite eras (grand ballrooms, dinner parties while sitting next to a grand duke or war hero just returned from fighting against Napoleon and the French, hey I girl can dream, can’t she).
When I am not reading or writing the stories I have visions in my head, I am enjoying the joyful moments with my growing family, the ballet and romantic movies.
Writing has always been a great passion for me, a long road of many ups and downs (and lots of online writing classes) and the years it took to get the craft right, finally, all my time and efforts paid off and now my dream of becoming a published author is now a reality.
It just goes to prove dreams can come true as long as you do not give up on them.
Susana: What is your favorite part of writing?
Diane: The research and having the opportunity to let my imagination run away with me as I go into another place and time while creating romantic stories.
Susana: Your current release, The Rake’s Redemption, takes a slightly different spin on the “left at the altar” storyline. Where did you get the idea for your unique spin on this familiar theme?
Diane: I always enjoyed reading second chance on romance books and I thought I could do this and the hard part was trying to come up with a plot that wasn’t used before. I do hope you like Caroline and Pierce as they found the love they once shared wasn’t lost forever.
Susana: This story also has elements of the difficulties soldiers face when they return home. Who or what was your inspiration for this secondary theme?
Diane: The anniversary of Waterloo and I thought what must it have felt like to be battle, seeing your fellow soldiers and friends die right before your eyes.
Susana: What do you have coming up next?
Diane: January 2016 – A Christmas Regency novella – The Earl’s Christmas Embrace – matchmaking gone astray. First of a series of war heroes coming home and searching for their missing friend.
Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)
While researching for my debut novella The Rake’s Redemption, I stumbled upon PTSD and thought my hero, Pierce Mortimer, just returning from the Napoleonic wars, most likely had suffered this illness on this return home.
In Regency England, they would not have had the name or medical understanding that we have today. It was not until World War I that they termed the condition shell shock.
Research on the condition of PTSD in the 18th century has meant significant digging and piecing together information given to them in bits and pieces. Suffering with PTSD could lead one to re-experiencing experiences through recollections, dreams or acting as if the event is still going on.
PTSD is not limited to just re-experiencing. There are many pieces of the puzzle. There could be attempts to numb or avoid the topic of what he experiences with copious amounts of alcohol. There would be outburst or anger or one might have difficulty in social situations.
The Napoleonic wars were long and drawn out and it is not inconceivable that soldiers did not return with PTSD. They just would had a different name for it.
In regards to the Royal Navy, they were believed to just be melancholy. War and its consequences (death, disease) were so commonplace during the 18th century that those who had symptoms of PTSD were called cowards. The names they had for PTSD were cerebro-spinal shock or wind contusions. The condition was treated with skepticism which had to be difficult for a soldier who had no physical wounds.
About Rake’s Redemption
Rake’s Redemption is a story of love interrupted by a young man’s call to duty…
Pierce, a younger son, realizes that the life of a military officer is far beneath what the woman he loves deserves. Despite her reassurances, he makes a decision to leave her behind, which will haunt him even after he returns from the war.
Caroline, socially ruined by a failed elopement, yearns for a husband and children of her own. Finally deciding to accept the attentions of eligible bachelors, her world is turned upside down once again when her brother in law returns from fighting Napoleon on the peninsula.
When Pierce returns to his childhood home, he and Caroline soon realize they share a sizzling physical attraction. But will the lingering pain of rejection she carries and his dark memories of battle stand in the way of love?
About the Author
Always an avid reader, Diane was introduced to the world of historical romance at the age of fourteen by favorite aunt. From that day, she determined to create her own world of romance, filled with the British aristocracy and the turbulent Regency era, during and after the Napoleonic Wars.
When not reading or writing about dukes, earls, and their ladies, Diane spends her time making beautiful memories with her husband and children, attending the ballet, or watching movies (love stories, of course!).