Thanks to the fillies for inviting me back to guest blog with some of my favorite authors. It’s always a pleasure. When I was last here in May my daughter was on the verge of graduating high school. Now, she’s nearly finished with her freshman year at the University of Kentucky. I’ve had the joy of moving her into the dorm, agonizing over her first sorority rush, flying her home for the holidays and sending her back for yet another round of school and fun. By the way, I’ve decided to call her college, Camp UK. If she wasn’t pulling a solid 4.0 (Yay!) I might think she was having too much fun. Instead, I miss her dearly.
But I’m not here to whine about my empty nest. I’m here to talk about my latest release, Book Four in the Charity House series, THE LAWMAN CLAIMS HIS BRIDE.
For those of you who have read any of the other books in this series you already know that Charity House is no ordinary orphanage, but rather a unique home for the by-blows/mistakes of prostitutes and gunslingers. By its very nature, Charity House lends itself to unique stories.
Because my hero and heroine have been around from the beginning of the series I found myself faced with a large problem. Logan and Megan met and fell in love back in Book Two, HANNAH’S BEAU. But Megan was too young and Logan wasn’t ready to be a family man. Well, that’s what everyone said anyway. But no matter what they’re told, they can’t help loving one another.
The reader finds out in Book 3, LOVING BELLA, that Logan has taken a job in San Francisco to make a living worthy of his beloved. He plans to marry Megan as soon as he returns home. There is no doubt these two will end up together.
But therein lays the heart of the problem.
What fun is a romance novel where the hero and heroine are already in love before the book even begins? More importantly, how was I supposed to accomplish the daunting task of writing a full-length novel with zero romantic conflict? Can you say: Boring?
Under the circumstances, I did what any self-respecting writer would do. I started playing the “what if” game.
What if one or both of them is only in love with the idea of being in love? What if they’ve each built up the other in their minds to impossible proportions? What if a newly appointed US Marshal comes home to marry his one true love, only to find her in jail for murder?
Now I had the makings of a story.
But wait. There’s more. Another issue I wanted to tackle was the touchy subject of intimacy between newly married Christians. We in the church tell our youth that a strong physical attraction will translate into a strong sexual connection once vows are spoken, but not before. Never before. Christians, especially Christian women, are taught from a very early age that intimacy is bad, bad, bad. Unless, of course, inside the sanctity of marriage.
But isn’t that sending our girls a confusing, dare-I-say mixed message? For a bride’s entire life she’s taught that intimacy with a man is something to be avoided at all costs. “Don’t even think about it, much less do it,” she’s told. But then, on the night of her wedding, she’s supposed to flip some invisible switch and suddenly intimacy is a good thing.
Leave a comment today or tomorrow and you’ll be eligible to win a copy of THE LAWMAN CLAIMS HIS BRIDE, book 4 in my CHARITY HOUSE series. I’ll be giving away three copies today. An additional grand prize winner will receive a copy of all four of the CHARITY HOUSE books.
Renee Ryan writes for Love Inspired Historical and Love Inspired. Her fabulous editor is Melissa Endlich. For more information, you can visit Renee at