Andrea Downing has spent most of her life in the UK where she developed a penchant for tea-drinking, a tolerance for rainy days, and a deep knowledge of the London Underground system. In 2008 she returned to live in the city of her birth, NYC, but frequently exchanges the canyons of city streets for the wide open spaces of the West. Her love of horses, ranches, rodeo and just about anything else western is reflected in her writing. Loveland, a western historical romance from The Wild Rose Press, is her first book. She is a member of Romance Writers of America and Women Writing the West.
Tell us your latest news? Not sure how up-to-the-minute this is but my first book, Loveland, was published in August and I am now shopping around a bit of contemporary commercial fiction and finishing up a short story of historical romance. I’ve just got back from two conferences which were, happily, in Bandera, Texas and Albuquerque, NM (any excuse to go west for me is a good excuse) and, in the last few minutes as I write this, I have just discovered I hate writing sex scenes.
Is there a message in your novel that you want readers to grasp? ‘No’ would be the easy answer. Not as yet; Loveland is pure escapism really. But I do think in writing western romance I am searching for something quintessentially American. I don’t want to get too philosophical here, but I can tell you, having lived so long in Britain, that there is something that goes to the very heart (no puns intended!) of Americans in western romance. So…looking for the American experience? Dunno…
If someone wrote a book about your life, what would they title it? Reinventing the Unimaginable. I don’t know if I should explain that but it certainly fits! As I said, I lived most of my life in Britain. Now I am come home, I have a place in Jackson, Wyoming and, while I live in NYC, I certainly love everything western. OK, so I’m a wannabe, but at my age, lady, herding cattle is now out of the question (though I did visit a working cattle ranch in NV last summer and went out with the cowboys…). It’s amazing I can still ride a damn horse!
What is the ultimate dream vacation? Oh, my goodness. Tough one, Rionna! I have traveled pretty extensively throughout Europe and Latin America plus lived a while in Africa, but I haven’t as yet been to Asia really, or ‘down under’ (sounds rather rude, doesn’t it?) I love the American West and am always happy to go there. So….hmmmm… maybe I would choose as a dream vacation to go round Australia to the ranches, or stations as they are called, and do some riding there and compare them to our American ranches. See the sights, relax on the Great Barrier Reef and then be happy to go out to my place in Jackson…
What person in history would you most like to meet? Tons of ‘em, no idea. Everyone from Wyatt Earp and Doc Holliday to Charles Dickens and Gandhi. Can’t pick just one. Sorry!
If you could design a refrigerator magnet, what would it say? Been there, done that, still doin’.
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When Lady Alexandra Calthorpe returns to the Loveland, Colorado, ranch owned by her father, the Duke, she has little idea of how the experience will alter her future. Headstrong and willful, Alex tries to overcome a disastrous marriage in England and be free of the strictures of Victorian society --and become independent of men. That is, until Jesse Makepeace saunters back into her life... Hot-tempered and hot-blooded cowpuncher Jesse Makepeace can't seem to accept that the child he once knew is now the ravishing yet determined woman before him. Fighting rustlers proves a whole lot easier than fighting Alex when he's got to keep more than his temper under control. Arguments abound as Alex pursues her career as an artist and Jesse faces the prejudice of the English social order. The question is, will Loveland live up to its name?