Friday, December 14, 2012

Behind a story: The art of turning fact into fiction.


Congratulations to the grand prize winner, "Jennifer C" and the 10 runners-up, "Pam", "Julie B", "Colleen C", "Virna D", "Tamara H", "DGBC", "Nancy W", "Pam" "Karen C", "Taurus". Thank you to all who participated! 

Hello, my name is Julieanne Reeves. I'm the Amazon's Bestselling author of Razing Kayne (Book 1 in my Walking a Thin Blue Line police series). For those of you who don't know, I'm a former police/fire/911 dispatcher. Working for a small agency afforded me the opportunity to take an intimate look into all aspects of law enforcement. Little did I know that years later I'd be putting that knowledge to use writing Romantic Suspense. But here I am, and I'm hoping to be able to give you a look into the process—well at least my process—of writing romantic suspense. 

           One night, many years ago, my agency received a call of a domestic dispute in progress. Upon arrival, the officers learned that the male suspect was known to them and had an outstanding felony arrest warrant for drug charges. He was purportedly flying high on drugs at the time. When the officers made their move to apprehend him he dove through a plate-glass window to avoid being arrested. A manhunt ensued; there was evidence he'd been seriously injured with the stunt. It took nearly 24 hours, and the help of several police agencies, but the suspect was taken into custody. He'd been nearly 100 miles away, holed up in a hotel room, and slowly bleeding to death.

           So, how am I going to turn that case into fiction? Well I could do it a couple different ways, but lets' try this:

           Undercover DEA agent Timothy Davis stood with his back to the large plate-glass window. The officers—both of them rookies—had no idea who he was. How could they when he barely remembered the answer to that himself? Tim had been living in the underbelly of humanity for so long he wondered if he'd ever see the light again. Standing here staring down the barrel of this officer's duty-weapon he feared that answer was no.
           “Keep your hands where I can see them and get down on the ground!” the officer shouted, but Tim couldn't obey that order. Too many people's lives hung in the balance, including those of the men trying to take him into custody.
           Maybe he could convince these guys they had the wrong man. “Look, there's been some misunderstanding—” 
            The officer's finger tightened slightly on the trigger. “I said get down on the ground!” Damn, the kid was scared; a bad quality that didn't bode well for Tim.
            Apparently he was going to have to do this the painful way. Tim slowly spread his arms wide, keeping his palms open, giving every indication he planned to comply. He'd bide his time and make his move. One way or the other he had to get the hell out of here and catch up with the bastard he'd been chasing for the past five years.
            His chance came far sooner than he'd expected when a door to his left opened and both rookies made the fatal mistake of taking their eyes off him for a split second. Tim took advantage and launched himself through the plate-glass window and toward freedom...

            In this case I decided to make our bad-guy an undercover DEA Agent. That wasn't the situation with the real life incident, but it's a good example of how facts can be spun into a story.             While I don't foresee that incident every making it into one of my books, it is the writing process I used with Razing Kayne.

            Razing Kayne's opening Prologue—well , a variation of it—was the first scene I wrote. A murder-suicide case had been splashed across the media. The mother had purportedly killed her children and then herself. A scenario that is regrettably not an isolated incident. The incident was tragic enough, but then a cameraman captured a momentary glimpse of the father as he was being escorted out of the house and into a patrol car. You see, he'd found his family dead, and called 911. But in that moment the cameraman caught sight of that father and husband and every ounce of pain that possessed him was right there written across his face. He believed his wife had done the unspeakable and he was understandably shattered. Witnessing his anguish was enough to cut someone off at the knees.

            Though I don't remember his name, and did not learn the outcome of the investigation, his image remains indelibly imprinted on my mind. Eventually I gave in to the emotion swirling around inside me and wrote that epilogue. My first attempt at was from the Oksana's—the mother's—point of view. To say I was shocked over what “really” happened in the fictitious version is an understatement. By the time I was done I had a story outline. I knew who was involved, what had happened, and most importantly, why they'd done it: Colonol Mustard in the Library with the Candlestick. ( (c) Hasbro's Clue)  From there I used my experience as a dispatcher and my knowledge of police procedure and before I knew it a Razing Kayne was complete.

            You can read that prologue and the first few chapters by downloading the sample from Amazon.com or your favorite e-readers store.           

The Giveaway: Leave a comment below telling me what your favorite read of 2012 has been.

            One lucky commenter will receive a grand prize of an autographed copy of Razing Kayne along with a custom-made ribbon bookmark. (US/APO mailing address only) **TEN runners-up will receive an ebook copy of Razing Kayne.

            And since it's almost Christmas, I have a special gift the rest of you: The first 25 people to comment will receive an e-copy of Razing Kayne. (Worldwide. You can gift it to someone else or keep it for yourself) All I ask is that you spread the word about this blog post through one of your social media channels (Facebook/twitter/pinterest etc) **The Ten runners up apply to anyone commenting after the first 25.

Giveaway ends 11:59pm EST Dec. 14th. Please supply your email in the post. You may use spaces or full text for security. (ex. jsmith at gmail dot com) If you do not wish to supply your email, or have trouble posting, please email maureen@justromanticsuspense.com with a subject title of JRS GIVEAWAY to be entered in the current giveaway. (US/APO mailing address only for grand prize.)

59 comments:

  1. Thank you for the giveaway! The book sounds interesting and am looking forward to reading it!

    jaclynlavigne@yahoo.com

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  2. What a great way to start the day! This book has been on my wish list, waiting for Christmas and the almost guarantee an Amazon GC would be in my stocking! Can't wait to read it. Running off to share now.
    kara9017 (at)sbcglobal (dot) net

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  3. Interesting chat this morning. Thanks for being so good to your reader and congrats on your newest book.
    grandmabkr at yahoo dot com

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  4. I forgot to list my favorites of 2012! Off the top of my head, I'd have to go with TWISTED by Laura Griffin, Marie Force's FATAL DECEPTION, and Eric Blehm's true story of a Navy Seal, FEARLESS. All highly recommended reads!

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  5. Loved this blog! I have to say that Razing Kayne was one of the best, most touching books I've read in a while. I definitely wasn't expecting as much emotion as I experienced when reading it. Love it and can't wait for the next installment in the series :)

    And thanks for the contest too :D

    Jennifer

    jlzeffer at yahoo dot com

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  6. Wow this sounds like a awesome book,I don't get on amazon for books cause I have a nook so I hope barnes and noble has it.I love getting on here and finding new authors.Debra Stolhand (cher123@cableone.net)

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  7. This sounds like a great book. It comes recommended by a friend as well, so I'm definitely interested in it!

    seaellare at charter dot net

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  8. I've been waiting for the holidays to come around to get my hands on this book (what? I'm a poor little postgrad student; if I can get someone else--coughparents&siblingscough--to pay for the crazy amount of books I read instead of reading those pesky science papers I should be reading to write my dissertation, I can afford to feed myself instead of my Kindle every once in a while :P).

    I've read a lot of great books in 2012, but off the top of my head and of the romantic suspense persuasion, I'd have to go with Laura Griffin's SCORCHED (TWISTED was legend too!), Allison Brennan's STALKED, and Marie Force's FATAL DECEPTION. All of them are parts of series, and all those series are highly worthwhile reads.

    Okay, off to spread the word...

    stalkers00(at)yahoo(dot)com

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  9. What an exciting story line! I look forward to reading your book! I love reading and have found all the books I've read this year have been wonderful in their own way! Thanks for adding a new title to my list of must reads!
    Christina

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    1. Christina, can you get me your email address. If you don't want to post it here, then send it to authorjulieannereeves@gmail.com just mention that you're one of the first 25 for the JRS giveaway.

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  10. Ohhh, this book has been on my wish-list since I first read about it!
    Beth

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  11. Ive read so many great books this year its too mind boggling to choose! This book looks amazing! missy.bair80@gmail.com

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  12. Woohoo! I love a good romantic suspense!

    luv2readrom (at) yahoo (dot) com

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  13. Oops forgot my email
    Mom2njee at gmail dot com

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  14. oops, hit the button too fast due to excitement-
    here's the rest
    whartonmicheal(@)sbcglobal(dot)net

    thanks, Beth

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    1. Beth this got kicked back to me as an invalid email address.

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  15. Love the blog and the book! Thanks Julieanne

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  16. This book sounds awesome. Can't wait to read it. Merry Christmas to all and have a great day

    jerigraff@gmail.com

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  17. Sounds like a great read. Would love a copy!

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    1. Got excited and forgot to add...My favorite read of 2012 was...hard to choose but...Breaking Point from Pam Clare is one.

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    2. Helps to add an email...stewartfan14@maine.rr.com

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  18. Sounds like something I would LOVE! I would love a copy :)

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    1. OOOPS......forgot to give my email! It's laurapolz@aol.com THANKS!

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  19. My favorite read so far of this year has been Run The Risk. I've read a lot of books this year, but that one stands out. I am looking forward to reading your book. My bank account however is probably not looking forward to me having found this site. ;)

    Jennifer

    swtpea1974@yahoo.com

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  20. I loved all of H.P. Mallorys books. I would love a copy of your book. Always looking for a new author to read!! Email. goingcrazyinsc@hotmail.com. Thanks!!

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  21. First of all let me say....Razing Kayne is fantastic. It is a must read and one of the best books that I have read in 2012. I highly recommend this book to everyone I talk to, to the blogs I visit, on facebook, etc. This book is just fantastic. My other favorite reads for 2012 are Joan Swan's Pheonix Series - Fever and Blaze. Both Julieanne Reeves and Joan Swan are the best new Romantic Suspense writers of 2012. My third favorite books for 2012 are Julie Ann Walkers Black Knight Inc. Trilogy.

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  22. I just discovered your book. Absolutely loved it. You're an author who's definitely going on my list.

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  23. Would love a copy of your book!

    eliseandtegan@gmail.com

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  24. Great post! Would love to read Razing Kayne. Happy Holidays! :)
    calstephanie@yahoo.com

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    Replies
    1. Can't really pick a favorite read for 2012. I've read so many great books by some wonderful authors!

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  25. Ill take him under my tree! ;) if not the book in my stocking ;)

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    1. Dive Witch, would you please post, or email me your email address? Thanks.

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  26. Looks great! julie1224@gmail.com thanks!

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  27. sounds intriguing .. always nice to be introduced to a new author that I haven't had the privilege to read yet.. thanks for the possibility ..

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    1. Story Dreamer, can you please post your email address or email me directly authorjulieannereeves@gmail.com. Thanks!

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  28. Sounds like an awesome book. Too bad I'm a little late for the giveaway. My book habit has gotten very expensive!

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  29. ATTENTION: Everyone please continue to leave your contact information. I've sent a message to Maureen. We'll randomly pick an additional (to be determined - say 10 or more) people from this point forward for copies.

    Merry Christmas!

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  30. This sounds like a fabulous series. I love that your background will add authenticity to the plot and characters. My email is virna@virnadepaul.com

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  31. Hi

    Your book sounds wonderful. I love this type of genre. I have read so many books this year that I am not sure what my favorite is. I enjoyed the books from Jillian Stone, Maya Banks and I also found Elaine Levine's books. Such fun finding new to me authors.

    Thanks for the chance
    Pam
    tpibrew@msn.com

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  32. Looks like a great book to rad!

    nancywalters2714@aol.com

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  33. I would love to read your book. Your book sounds great.

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  34. To late for the giveaway but definitely going to buy....

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  35. Will love to read this book. Eneida8a@gmail.com

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  36. I "discovered" the Tara Janzen Steele Street Series this year and thoroughly enjoyed making my way through all the books. Thank You to the commenters on Book Blogs for steering me in Tara's direction.
    jmkbuddy@yahoo.com

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  37. Sounds like a great read.
    this usually isn't my thing, i am normally a para-romance type of girl but it sounds like something i could become interested in.
    julienailz@aol.com

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  38. Sadly I'm not in time for the giveaway (very generous of you!), but Razing Kayne is now on my wish list (love the bookmark, too). I love finding new authors. There isn't any way that I can select one favorite book this year. I was in a position to do a lot of reading this year and it would be a great disservice to all of the authors to just pick one.
    kacbooks at hotmail dot com

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  39. Nice post. I liked Lover reborn by JR Ward.

    bn100candg(at)hotmail(dot)com

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  40. Gee... my fav book of the year. That is a hard one... I read so much and from so many genres... okay I will lean towards a new author that I found from this very blog... Carla Swafford's Circle Of Desire.
    Thanks for sharing & Happy Happy Holidays!

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  41. I know today's tragedy in CT has hit everyone hard. I went and picked up my own children from school early. I just couldn't stand to be away from them any longer. Heck every time I look at them I about burst into tears, so thankful that it wasn't at our school, and my children's class room. Of course then I want to cry for thinking that. :/
    My heart goes out to the victim's parents, and families; to the officers, firemen and medics, and support staff working this horrible, senseless crime scene.

    So, if you'd rather share something you're thankful for,I'd love to hear about that.

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  42. The Secret Keeper by Kate Morton.

    jtcgc at yahoo dot com

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  43. I read so many wonderful books in 2012!Just a few of my favorite, Enforcer's Redemption, Carrie Ann Ryan, Forbidden Hero, Laura Kaye, Hereafter, Joya Fields,Always a Marine series, Heather Long,and so many more!
    Sugerlady@aol.com

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  44. Scorched by Laura Griffin, The Penton Vampires by Suzanne Sandlin, 4th Grave Beneath My Feet by Darynda Jones, just off the top of my head! I know I read many more that I call favorites in 2012. Your book sounds awesome and I can't wait to read it. Thanks for the chance to win it.

    mlawson17 at hotmail dot com

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  45. Thanks for the fun post and fantastic giveaway! This has been an awesome reading year for me. I have so many favs :) I guess the first ones that comes to mind was Ride With Me by Ruthie Knox and The Witness by Nora Roberts

    efender1(at)gmail(dot)com

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    1. This is definitely a hard day. Sad for the families and sad for our country's spirit. Definitely makes me appreciate friends and family so much more and selfishly I'm glad that I only have fur babies to worry about in times like these. My thoughts and prayers go out to all tonight.

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  46. The sounds like an amazing book to read. I would love to win a copy.

    Janet B

    jkbsfsd at msn dot com

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  47. Thanks for sharing this offer, n it look like a very interesting. Of course, I would like to have a copy too...

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