by Nikki Logan
So...not really sure what happened over at Romance central (Harlequin HQ) but somehow my reader letter and dedication for my March release 'Mr Right at the Wrong Time' managed to not make it into the final book.
I'm religious about getting these in because every book has a story-behind-the-story and a handful of people who have earned special thanks in its creation. So I thought I'd use my blog today to thank those people and tell that story...
It's timely because the one year anniversaries of both the 2011 Queensland floods and the 2011 Christchurch earthquakes happened very recently, so disasters are still very fresh in a lot of minds, including my fellow LoveCats, some of whom were personally touched by the tragedies.
To the families who lost something—or everything—in Queensland and Christchurch in 2011. The amazing efforts of the emergency personnel who helped you inspired this book.
And to ‘our’ Aimee Leigh — hold out for love. Make it count.
Thank you to Rachel Bailey and Kylie Griffin for your unique perspectives on both sides of an emergency rescue situation.
And this would have been my reader letter...
This book was easy and hard to write in equal measures.
It came to me as I was sitting, teary-eyed and captivated, watching the rescue efforts following the 2011 earthquake in New Zealand. There, an emergency services volunteer spent long, painful hours stretched out across a slab of rubble on the exterior of a collapsed building being the fingers-and-voice lifeline for an office worker trapped beneath the mountain of debris. A woman we only ever knew as ‘Anne’. She—and he—became the public face of that crisis.
It highlighted the powerful relationship that rescuers can have with victims of tragedy, particularly because the outcomes are never certain right up until the moment they are pulled from danger. The weight of the responsibility they must feel, how torn between empowering victims with the awful truth of their situation and lying to keep them sane. Those hours together would be so surreal.
And so I wanted to explore what would happen after the crisis is over—where the real world and all its day-to-day issues intrudes. And I threw a real obstacle into the mix.
It would be so easy to walk away from that kind of emotion and chalk it up to the forced intimacy of the rescue.
The second part of this book really challenged me, and you’ll understand why when you get there. It challenged me to think outside of my own values, to really immerse myself in my characters’ situation, to truly empathise.
For all kinds of reasons Aimee and Sam’s is not a situation I’d ever like to find myself in, but I’ll take their happy-ever-after any day.
Perfect, hard-won love of two imperfect people.
(Actually now that I look at it, maybe it didn't go in because it was really rather long! *cough*)
I'll be posting Sam and Aimee's first kiss this Sunday in the LoveCats SUNDAY SMOOCH if you'd like to come and get more of a feel for their story.
Do you have to pull the plug on the television and throw your wireless internet into the bottom of a deep drawer when national crises are happening? Can you walk away? Or do you become glued to the television/internet awash in a cocktail of empathetic chemicals that surge when we witness terrible situations unfolding? Or are you someone who would have given anything to *only* be experiencing it on TV? I'd love to hear your stories if you're able to share.