Author Interview With Judith Hale Everett

Please introduce yourself and your book(s)

I write traditional Regency romance, which is historical romance in a style similar to Jane Austen. I currently have two books available in all formats: Two in the Bush, about a widow who falls in love with her daughters suitor; and Romance of the Ruin, about a girl who falls in love with a Gothic ruin and resolves to marry the owner, no matter who he is. My third book is called Forlorn Hope, and is about a man whose love is married to another man in a marriage of convenience.

Tell us about the characters and relationships in your stories

I love to write about relationships that are built on trust and commitment as well as attraction. Because I try to be historically accurate, my characters are bound by the social and religious mores of the time, and so focus more on getting to know each other without sexual intimacy of any kind. This makes building sexual tension way more interesting, as well as adding lots of comedy surrounding miscommunication. My characters are all realistic and flawed while trying to be decent human beings (in general).

What lessons could readers learn about real-world relationships from your novels?

Some people may wonder how I can portray satisfying relationships without sex, but it’s not hard. Modern society focuses so much on sex as the key component of a good relationship that it’s hard for some of us to believe people could date and court without it, but they did. And their chances of finding true love and staying committed to each other were extremely high. I think that says a lot about focusing on friendship and trust first and letting sex settle into the gaps to create a full, rich and strong relationship that will last. I think it’s good to realize that just because “everybody’s doing it” doesn’t mean it’s necessarily best.

What real-life relationship experiences, observations or insights have influenced your writing?

I live in a culture where marriage and family are the highest priority and where premarital or extramarital sex are not condoned. The people who abide by those precepts have some of the strongest and most satisfying romantic relationships I’ve seen. They aren’t perfect and they had challenges and disagreements before marriage and still do after being married for decades, but they stay committed and work things out and are exceptionally happy. I try to reflect that kind of relationship in my books, to give people hope that they can also have such satisfying relationships, without having to focus on sex first and foremost.

Are there any relationship themes or topics you want to cover in future releases?

I’ve covered second-chance love, interracial love, and forbidden love. Next I plan to tackle how love can break down ingrained prejudice and how a desire to be loved can help someone change for the better. I really feel that true love can conquer all, not just in romantic relationships but in everything.

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