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Monday, October 17, 2011

Monday Spotlight: Rose Anderson

After long consideration, I think the best way to begin my spot here on Whipped Cream, is to describe the earliest days that put my feet on this author’s path. But before I start, I’d like to give a nod to the folks at The Long and Short Of It/Whipped Cream. Thanks for having me!

I’m a Wordie in the truest sense. I love words. I collect them. My bookshelves are filled with dictionaries, thesauri, and word origin books. I once had this fabulous 1880′s set of Cyclopedic Dictionaries with every word known to the English language. And I do mean every word. The local library was throwing it away. Can you imagine? True, it was missing half of all the G words. But really though, how many G words from the 1880’s does one need to know? The other volumes, with their ratty and taped bindings were still there and homely as it was, this set made Miriam and Noah’s dictionaries look nothing less than amateurish. I took them home and loved them. I regret not using them to their full potential when I had the chance, but I wasn’t writing at the time.

One day my husband found bookworms on our bookshelf, honest-to-god bookworms! My precious old Cyclopedias were the source. It broke my heart to get rid of them but their parasites were attacking other books. I thought about putting them in the oven but they were so old and brittle I was sure I’d burn the house down. Perhaps another set is out there waiting for a wordy like me.

Words not only add color to the world, they describe everything down to the smallest detail. They fill the emotional palette in the mind. Word by word these simple elements of language become brush strokes able to turn a blank canvas into a thought or visualization. Aside from loving their evocative potential, I also love that they describe how things work. I literally devour any and all informational materials from cookbooks to books on quantum physics. For kicks back in the 1980’s, I even tackled the entire World Book Encyclopedia and read them as one might read a magazine. My husband reminds me that I also read the extra addendums. He thinks I’m strange. LOL

I already knew how to read by the time I got into kindergarten. That was a curious thing as no one in my family recalled teaching me how. I can still remember how out of place I felt when the other kids were slowly sounding out c-a-t and d-o-g while I silently read the label on the jar of paste and knew it was scented with wintergreen. I read anything my eyes could land on in that room, and days of boredom endlessly stretched out in front of me. That experience started the ball rolling downhill as far as formal education was concerned. It didn’t help that I was sickly child. As a self-directed learner, I loved to learn. But I hated school. I became a teacher so other children wouldn’t see their days filled with endless boredom like mine had been.

While I don’t remember how it came to be that I could read when I was four years old, I do know this fascination with the potential of words all started with the Reader’s Digest. In the first ten years of my life, the Chicago Tribune came to my house in the morning and the Daily News arrived early afternoon. My father and I read both newspapers together on Sunday. It was a ritual of sorts. We’d divide the papers…he’d take the front page and car sections and I’d take the “funnies” and the sports page. We’d read those quietly to ourselves, then we’d switch. I remember lying on my belly in the shaft of sunlight just behind the sofa and reading words that weren’t all understandable to my six-year-old or nine-year-old self.

“Dad, what is a demilitarized zone?”

“It’s a border between armies where no fighting takes place.”

“Dad, who’s Chairman Mao?”

“He is the leader of China.”

“Is Chairman his first name?”

“No, that’s his job. A chairman is the same as a president here.”

“Does he have a first name?”

“Read the article again and see if you can find it.”

“Oh, I think see it. His name is Mao Zadong. Isn’t that backwards?”

It makes me smile to remember. When he’d had enough he say, “Come do the crossword puzzle with me.” My smile widens here. Up until he passed away, dad would bring me a half finished crossword puzzle to finish nearly every time he stopped by to visit. We’d finish that sucker too, and always use a pencil just in case. :)

But what about that Reader’s Digest mentioned above? By far the most interesting reading material in the house was my dad’s Reader’s Digest. I cut my teeth on Build Your Word Power. Every month Reader’s Digest put out a list of words intended to build one’s vocabulary. From ages six on into my early thirties, he’d hand me the digest and say, “Here, these are for you.” At his suggestion, I’d try to break them down and guess their meanings before I turned the page to read their definitions. It was here, where I saw for the first time, the relationship between words. Words like Cardinal, Cardiac, and Cardamom — red bird, red heart, red berries – they were all red. Unfortunately, by the time Latin class was supposed to come my way, it was cut from the public school budget. I would have kicked butt in ancient languages. I’ve taught myself the basics but I might have a go at ancient Greek and Latin classes one day.

I still do crossword puzzles but I don’t get the Reader’s Digest anymore. Just not enough hours in the day to read that along with everything else I read, but I do pounce on one if I happen to see it in the doctor’s office. First stop – Build Your Word Power. My dad challenged me to have a broader relationship with words because he loved words too. Essentially, he made me the Wordy I am and in a roundabout way, set my feet on this author’s path. I have two books out now, my most recent – Dreamscape through Siren-Bookstrand publishers.

Have you ever fallen so deeply in love with the characters in a romance novel that thoughts of them linger long after the last page is turned? Have you ever been so completely immersed in a love scene that you’d swear you’ve just been kissed or more? Meet Rose Anderson’s strong, confident heroines and be seduced by compelling heroes you’ll wish were there beside you. Come see how their lives intertwine and through their stories discover love profound. From her current novels Hermes Online and Dreamscape, to the passionate stories that follow, this new author will sweep you away on a sensual tide of memorable story-telling.

People ask how I came to write romance stories of the sort. As I didn’t start out with this genre in mind, I’ve asked myself that very thing! I’ve several reasons actually, too many to list all of them here. First of all, I like seduction. That’s the reason I enjoy reading my favorite romance authors. Written seduction in a romance novel is a mind game, a ring-side seat to observe the psychological metamorphosis of the characters. Secondly, I like the physics of it. There comes a point where the connection between characters ignites into something neither has any control over–a 451° point of complete surrender that leads to total combustion. Lastly, because seduction is a cerebral thing, I find erotic romance to be the natural progression of the romance story.

I hope my imagery transports the reader to a time and place where, through the magic and power of words, they’re able to be inside the mind of the characters. Often from this intimate vantage point, the reader experiences the seductive transformation that will eventually send the hero and heroine hurtling toward the precipice. Come be the voyeur to their printed lives.

Open yourself and allow my words to take you there. Draw close as coals ignite and feel the climax build as if you yourself are there being plied with firm hands and soft kisses. And when all is absorbed and endured and nerves are strung bow tight, release this most cerebral orgasm and free fall to earth.

I hope you enjoy the flights of fancy I’ve created. When the last page is turned and the lovers roll into each others’ arms truly spent, know that I just may have another ember tucked away to warm your senses.

1 comment:

Jane Leopold Quinn said...

Hi Rose. I laughed at your wordie comment. I'm kind of that way too but not from crosswords. Just from voraciously reading books all my life. A word will come up in conversation with my husband that he won't ever have heard before. It'll be such a common word in my mind. And he's got a masters in linguistics. So I guess I'm smarter than he is. ;-)

Loved Hermes and Dreamscape. Jane