Thursday, January 07, 2010

Keena Kincaid

Yeah, our computers are finally talking!

Keena Kincaid, the author of four historical romance novels with The Wild Rose Press, is celebrating the release of TIES THAT BIND, the second of her Druids of Duncarnoch series. Her books are available from TWRP, Amazon, Barnes & Noble and other bookstores. You can find her on Facebook, MySpace, Twitter, and at

What inspires ideas for books?

I'm always surprised by what sparks a story idea. Sometimes, it's as simple as an overheard comment that sets my mind to spinning or as complicated as trying to decipher why I've dreamt the same thing for three nights in a row.

The catalyst for my current book, TIES THAT BIND, was literally the hero's nagging voice in my head whenever I took a shower. Aedan ap Owen simply wouldn't shut up about his displeasure at where I left him at the end of ANAM CARA. After getting over my wish that I'd dropped him down a hole, I sat down and wrote his story.

For my current WIP, the idea came to me while watching a 30-foot python swallow an alligator. And no, I have neither snakes nor reptiles in this story (so far), but it is a sweet little love story with a slight apocalyptic twist. I'm having fun writing it.

Your love of history shines through in your books. How did you come about the interest in the paranormal?

The paranormal elements came out of my love of medieval history. You can't study that era without a thorough grounding in religion and its pervasive impact not only on daily life but also in shaping the medieval world view.

People of that time period had a strong acceptance of the supernatural, of something being beyond their comprehension and outside the laws of nature. By adding paranormal elements to my historical romances, I get to write about larger-than-life heroes, as well as have my characters wrestle with the challenge of being outsiders and struggle to answer the big questions of Right and Wrong (which is interesting and can really solidify character) without turning the book into an essay on medieval philosophy and religion. For me, it's a way of capturing the spirit of the era without bogging the story down in the details.

Plus, the paranormal is just plain fun.

What else do you have in the works?

I've just contracted my fourth novel with The Wild Rose Press. ENTHRALLED, a sequel to TIES THAT BIND, tells the story of William and Amilia, who have been soul mates since childhood, but are torn apart by social and familial expectations to marry for political advantage. Both are secondary characters in TIES.

It's in edits now and should be out before the end of the year.

And, as I said earlier, my current WIP is a sweet little love story with an apocalyptic twist. I'm in the beginning stages, still hammering out the first few chapters and character arcs, but I'm having a lot of fun with it. The conflict comes completely out of who the characters are, and the fact that Lelia de Saint is not at all what Crispin FitzWilliam thinks a woman should be.

A druid who denies himself nothing desires the only woman who believes magic and love don't mix.

Out of place in the Plantagenet court, minstrel AEDAN ap OWEN misuses his Sidhe gifts for the king's dark business. Sent north to investigate rumors of treason and dispatch the troublemakers, Aedan discovers someone is murdering monks and stealing saints’ relics. And all clues point to Carlisle.

TESS, LADY of BRIDSWELL, refuses to rekindle her relationship with Aedan. She knows his reputation as a secret stealer—and she has a secret that must be kept. But her resolve falters when her uncle promises her hand to a man she despises and Aedan hounds her steps.

A would-be king uses the stolen relics to amplify his power, wielding it like a weapon. Meeting the traitor's magic with magic will prevent war, but it will also destroy Aedan’s chance to show Tess he has at last mastered the temptation of the ancient wisdom. Can Aedan renounce his magic to win Tess' heart anew or will he choose magic over love?

It was a single word, four letters, yet Aedan somehow imbued her name with the importance of a royal decree. He knows words, she reminded herself, quickening her steps. Life in the king's court had no doubt honed to perfection his raw talent for finding the phrase to start a quarrel or arouse passion. By now, he could likely start a war or stop one with a single syllable. Chilled by the thought, she turned into a niche in the wall and discovered escape ended at an oak door as wide as she was tall. She fumbled for a latch. Finding only smooth boards beneath her hand, she pressed her palm against the door, prayed it would miraculously open. The steps behind her stopped. She closed her eyes. He had bathed. He smelled of Saracen soap, spicy and exotic, mixed with the brisk, earthy scent of old trees that had clung to her for days after he’d left.
A tremor ran down her spine. Saints, she still loved the way he said her name. Rather than giving it a shortened, clipped feel like everyone else, he elongated it, adding depth and weight as if it were her true name.
“Tess, look at me.”
Unable to move forward or backward, she pressed her forehead against the door. Go away. Just go away, she prayed, and then hands, warm and steady, settled on her shoulders.


Keena Kincaid said...

Whew! Glad the computer snafus ended. Thanks for having me here, Paty.

Maggie Toussaint said...

Hi Keena,
I enjoyed your excerpt from Aedan's book. He is a cool hero. I very much enjoy your writing and I agree that paranormal is just plain fun.
Wishing you many sales with Ties that Bind, and congrats on your new contract with TWRP too!

Susan Macatee said...

Great post and excerpt, Keena!

And I have to agree, paranormal romance is fun, both writing and reading!

liana laverentz said...

People of that time period had a strong acceptance of the supernatural, of something being beyond their comprehension and outside the laws of nature.

I've always loved medievals, and I think you may have just pinpointed part of why. Thanks for that! The other part is the colorful use of language. I just love words.

Kris Kennedy said...

LOL--I love the idea that ap Owen kept complaining to you in the shower. :-)

Congrats again on the release!

Keena Kincaid said...

Thanks, Maggie. I, too, hope readers love Aedan as much as I do. He's probably one of the most complicated characters ever to spring from my brain.

Keena Kincaid said...

Thanks, Susan. I like the world-building opportunities that come with paranormal. Yes, authors build a world in every book they write, but with paranormals you can bend the rules and get away with it.

Keena Kincaid said...

Thanks, Liana. Glad I could pinpoint that for you. LOL!

I know that's one of the things that draws me to the medieval period. I always play the game, if Richard the Lionheart time traveled to now, what would he think? I think he'd wonder if he's hanging with demi-gods.

And I don't know why it's always Richard, but it is.

Keena Kincaid said...

Oh, Kris, that Aedan would follow me into the shower wasn't that much of a surprise. The man has no shame.

StephB said...

Haha that Aedan would follow you into the shower!

I just finished "Ties" and I enjoyed it very much. Working on Book reviews right now. I want to go back and re-read Anam Cara now which is a good thing and I'm looking forward to William and Ami's story.

I love the paranormal as well and I think you've done a great job weaving those elements into your story. I agree about the people being very superstitious back then. The people of Rome where also very superstitious and that lingered through the ages. Many of our older customs, including Christmas, are a meld of Christianity (at the time) and those Roman/pagan traditions.

Great post!

Ilona Fridl said...

Very intreging excerpt! Looks like a book I want to read.