History of the title:
When I submitted this manuscript, the story was very Daniel-centric, and the original title was The Robber Baron. I wanted to have a smoldering hot guy on the cover…. but my editors wisely re-branded the entire manuscript. Since this was my first book, they wanted to be sure readers would recognize the book as a historical romance whose audience was primarily women. We decided on a female-centric title with an ultra-feminine cover.
The story of the cover:
I never knew how much work went into designing a cover. Jennifer Parker, the awesome cover designer, came up with several mock-ups that were passed around the editorial team. When they selected the image they thought best reflected the tone of the book, they hired a model, rented a dress, and went on a photo shoot.
It’s eary life as contemporary romance:
Before finally getting published, I experimented with a lot of different genres and styles of writing. The story that eventually became The Lady of Bolton Hill was originally written as a contemporary. In this version, Daniel was the rich son of privilege who owns a major pharmaceutical company, and Clara was the poor girl from the wrong side of the tracks trying to get money to finish college. They fall madly in love, but Clara is much younger than Daniel and not ready to rush to the alter. When she lands a Rhodes Scholarship to study at Oxford, she takes it and Daniel dumps her in a huff. Eight years later Clara has become a respected journalist and returns to write a story about Daniel. The rest of the plot pretty much mirrors what occurred in The Lady of Bolton Hill. I was only about halfway into writing this manuscript, when I realized that the personalities of the characters…especially Daniel’s old-school manners, just screamed at me that this book should be a Victorian. Luckily for me, there were enough female journalists in the 1870’s that I was able to make the story work. I re-wrote it and this was the book that launched me into the world of historical romance.
Alternate Book Covers:
Most of the first part of The Lady of Bolton Hill ended up on the cutting-room floor. Several chapters were devoted to Daniel and Clara’s early friendship, but my editors were worried that spending so much time with them as adolescents might make people mistake this book as a coming of age story. I really love those early scenes, so I’ve given them new life here.
The only big difference you’ll notice in these scenes is that Daniel is 17 and Clara is only 14. My editor asked me to make them older in the book, but I’ve decided to leave them at this age, as Clara is clearly still pretty young here.
➤ Chapter One (This chapter appeared in the published version. If you want to re-read it, you can visit the link here.)
➤ Chapter Two (Clara goes to inform Daniel of a major gift.)
➤ Chapter Three (Daniel learns that Clara will be moving to London.)
➤ Chapter Four (Clara finds her calling in journalism and learns of Daniel’s success in America.)
➤ Daniel and Clara’s appearance in Against the Tide (I originally intended Daniel and Clara to be major supporting characters in Against the Tide, and their son was going to be kidnapped by the Professor in his ongoing vendetta against Bane. This scene features Daniel and Clara as they gather at a fancy award ceremony at Harvard to see Clara’s brother Clyde win an award. The scene reveals how Professor Van Bracken figures out a way to get leverage over Bane.)