Outside Influences: Tangled Memories, a Contemporary Gothic

Today’s guest blogger is Jan Scarborough.


JanScarbrough_TangledMemories_200pxIn September, I attended the 2015 Imaginarium, a convention covering all facets of creative writing. There I participated in a panel entitled “Outside Influences.” I learned from the discussion that the other four writers, no matter the genre, had similar paths to their careers—a passion for reading, an influential teacher, or a favorite book or writer.

Then something drove all the authors to write their first book: early praise from a second grade teacher or their classmates or the desire to “harm” a pesky sister.

For me, it was almost dying.

At 38, I had an ectopic pregnancy and almost bled to death. After spending four days in intensive care and a few months of recovery, I decided it was time to make my dreams come true. I did it by writing Tangled Memories.

Today, as I prepare to self-publish a re-edited version of my first book, it remains my favorite. It’s no secret writers put much of themselves in their books. Writing Tangled Memories was cathartic for me because I used the description of my life-threatening experience in the book. Not to give the story away, but I describe what I felt like as life slipped away from me.

Fortunately, I was given a second chance. And so is my heroine, Mary. As it turns out, most of my books are about second chances and heroines making the best of bad situations.

I’ve gone on to write more books, many of them contemporaries, but the old-fashion Gothic romance remains my favorite: the haunted mansion, the plucky heroine, and the dark, tormented hero. I’ve replicated Gothic romance traditions in Tangled Memories and added a “new age” twist.

Take a chance on Tangled Memories if you’re a fan of romantic suspense with a touch of fantasy and paranormal. It’s on pre-order now at 99 cents.


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