Today Harlequin Presents author Lucy King joins The Pink Heart Society to discuss her favorite means of escape.
Hello, PHS, and thank you so much for having me here. I’m such a fan, and a huge lover of little books with lots of heart – just check out my Kindle!
One of the main reasons I adore reading fiction – and romantic fiction in particular – is the escapism it offers. TV I can take or leave (although I am rather loving The Code at the moment), computer games, nope, not my bag, and films dubbed into Spanish somehow just aren’t quite right. A book, however, is a wonderful thing, and if it’s gripping enough, well, who needs sleep?
While life is generally pretty OK, I do find it deeply banal at times. All the washing and ironing, sweeping up Lego and trying to conjure up something interesting/different for supper makes me occasionally wonder why I bothered to go to university (cheap booze and fab social life aside). Supermarket shopping has to be one of the most soul-destroying activities on the planet. And while being asked by my four year old to make up a story about, for example, a shark, a dinosaur, a beach and a broken window exercises my creative muscles, it can get a bit wearing after the tenth request.
Then there are all the things that need doing around the house. The hole in the plaster in the sitting room wall which I made when I mis-hung a picture a year ago and still needs filling, for example. Or the pair of curtains in the playroom, one side of which I shortened and hemmed, the other I left for ‘later’ – two months ago. A 5 page to-do list + rubbish time management skills = low grade rumbling stress.
But banalities, frustrations, looming deadlines and the myriad other stuff I have churning around in my head are all made bearable by once in a while (OK, every night, the minute the children are in bed!) picking up a book and getting totally lost in a completely different world. I love it. Can’t get enough of it. Whether it’s historical romance or contemporary romance the minute I open it up I’m there, suffering, smiling, laughing and crying right along with the characters.
Why some people consider this to be a bad thing beats me. What’s wrong with escaping reality for an hour or two, especially if it keeps you sane? Surely it must be good for the imagination as well as the soul? And when life hurls one of its curved balls at you and everything seems to be going pear-shaped, or worse, well, who wouldn’t want to run away from that for a while?
I’m taking escapism one step further and actually leaving real life behind soon. Not just for an hour or two, but for a whole week.
At the end of November I’m heading to the Alpujarra region in south-east Spain where I’ve booked myself on a writing retreat. I’ve never done it before and I have no idea what it’s going to be like, but I have high hopes. There’ll be no curtains to sort out or holes in the wall to fix, for one thing. No suppers to cook or washing to do, for another. I also imagine it’s pretty unlikely that I’ll be asked to make up stories out of randomly-selected objects (although I might actually miss that!).
There’ll just be me, my laptop and maybe my Kindle, and you know what? I. Can’t. Wait.
What’s your favourite way to escape? And do you have to escape to write?
The Party Starts at Midnight is Lucy's latest release from Harlequin Presents.
This was not the itinerary that events planner Abby had intended:
8:00 p.m.: Leave the spectacular party you've organized in search of Leo Cartwright—international playboy, notorious tycoon and your most prestigious new client.
8:10 p.m.: Find Leo asleep, half-naked, in a penthouse suite that just screams decadence—and battle a wildly-out-of-character impulse to kiss him awake.
8:30–11:30 p.m.: Return to the party. Spend all evening avoiding Mr. Cartwright—and trying to forget his tempting demands…
11:59 p.m.: Assure Leo that you will not be mixing business with pleasure.
Midnight: Break your own vow… All. Night. Long…
To find out more about Lucy King and her books, please visit her website.