Authors, Reviews

Trumpet by Bill and Susan Hayes-Interview & Review

Major fan moment for me, Harlie.  I have the fabulous acting couple, now writing couple Bill and Susan Seaforth Hayes on the blog.  If you ever watched Days of Our Lives you will know them as Doug and Julie.  At the end of the post, there is a giveaway.  Please, please leave your email address with your comment so we can contact you if you are a winner.  Below you will find our interview and review.  Good luck.

Blurb:
Brilliant and sassy Elizabeth Trumpet fantasizes starring on the London stage, but to become an actress in 1803 is tantamount to losing her virginity in the most debasing way.
After watching her mother die and her father lose his mind, the courageous sixteen-year-old must find a way to save her family. She scores her first acting job as a fencer—the deadly skill she learned from her brother training for the military. Blessed with talent and a rare singing voice, Lizzie pursues her career, learning from theatrical characters high and low.
When reckless actor Jonathan Faversham sets eyes on Miss Trumpet, he knows he’s found the partner of his life. But Faversham carries ruinous baggage from a dark past. Entangled in lust and ambition, Lizzie gives him her heart and they reach the heights together. Until Lizzie gets more applause than he…
From the magnificence of Regency palaces and the Theatre Royal Covent Garden to the sun-baked pyramids of Egypt and the arms of a real-life Samson, Lizzie is never far from trouble. As her brother rides to glory with Wellington in the Napoleonic Wars, great events threaten her survival. Danger lurks behind stage curtains, when a madman sets fire to take her life and she lifts a sword in revenge.
Will this once innocent girl, with her rise to stardom, be remembered for her art? Or for her shame?
Trumpet is published by Decadent Publishing, and is available from Amazon UK, Amazon US, All Romance eBooks,Smashwords and all other good eBook retailers.
Interview:


1.      As we all know yall are some of the biggest soap stars out there.  Your following and devoted fans are still rabid.  Me included.  Best couple on days EVER.  Okay, fanatic fan moment over.  What do you think of the unfortunate demise of soap operas?  For this fan, it’s sad.  My grandfather NEVER missed Guiding Light.  You did not interrupt him when Josh and Reva were on.
As Monty Python would say “not quite dead yet!”  Four shows remain, despite the decline of viewership.  DAYS is finally nominated for some emmy awards this year.  Network television just may no longer be the comfortable home of the serial entertainment.  But wanting more chapters of the story you love will never ever go out of style, which brings us to the subject of our conversation: the epic novel Bill and Susan Hayes have just released called TRUMPET.  Seven years of research and writing, trimmed to an un-put-down-able four hundred and some pages of delicious escape. 
2.      What influenced your decision to write a book together?
Success writing our double memoir LIKE SANDS THROUGH THE HOURGLASS, now available from us at billandsusanhayes.com.  The editor at Pelican believed we were really born not to act but write, and so we plunged into the new and challenging genre of historical fiction.  Note, please, I do not say Romance fiction.  Trumpet is full of romantic ingredients, but it’s more than a bodice ripper.  With our book you can learn some fascinating facts while being emotionally, (and dare we say?) sensually  stimulated.   
3.      How did you all write your books?  Do you both take turns in writing or just put everything together?
We both write, and have to agree.  Then whoever is editing has to agree, too.  As long marrieds, we applaud each other’s ideas, sympathize with each other’s blocks and get a lot done by mental osmosis.  Bill is a great hand at poetry, rhyme, lyrics and has inspiring dreams full of actual dialogue.  Susan can take a historical event and put her characters into it with sense of dash and triumph.  They both love to write, and are used to working hard.  Writing is more work than inspiration. Like fulfilled artists in every field, they sweat over the product.
4.      What’s more important?  Characters or plot?
Plot grows out of characters.  Trumpet covers twenty years of eventful history, so there is first a collection of memorable characters you care about, experiencing a fascinating time, much like our own.  Soap opera plots are character driven if they are to catch your imagination and hold your interest over years.  Good novels do the same, especially the epics. 
5.      Why was it your decision to write a historical and not a contemporary?
The past fascinates us.  Set in the Regency world of English theatre we felt very contemporary (success or failure in show business has always been the same). The dynamics of a woman’s life in Jane Austen’s England, but on a completely different level than her experience, intrigued us.  There never was a more colorful period in history.  Napoleon was on the rampage and the arts were on fire.  A young girl, even a very talented one, went on the stage at her own peril, sacrificing an honorable future for the satisfactions of art.  And the beautiful men of the age!  (Most of whom turn up in our pages).   Nothing against contemporary life, we just personally prefer opera to hip-hop and a home cooked feast to Burger King.  You understand?    
6.      As a couple, who played a couple, was it easy or hard to write this pair?
The lovers in TRUMPET share some of our own experiences as mates.  They are mismatched, but happily Hayes and Hayes onstage and off are a great fit.
7.      After this writing experience, do you plan to write another book together?
We will wait to see if there is a demand for a sequel to TRUMPET.  So far those who finish it want more.  Immediately!  Decadent publishing muttered about a series after reading our first draft.  There is plenty of story left in our characters.  You will see for yourself. 
8.      What are the pros and cons of writing as a team?
Bill is a great detail man, having built back story for each character (three generations back actually).  He cheerfully kept his nose in the time line of all the real historical characters.  As an acting team we had great fun reading our dialogue aloud.  Neither one of us minded buying over a hundred books for research, or traveling around the world to Egypt, Rome, Britain, Waterloo and Charleston for the story.  Writing a novel together, if anything, made the marriage stronger.  We are partners. 
9.      What type of research did you have to do?
Among other things, we visited the reading library of the London Theatrical Museum and handled the archives of programs, reviews and paper tid-bits left from Sadler’s Wells, circa 1803.  We walked the streets of every place we describe.  We lived this story first hand.
10.  What tempted you to write a romance book?
      Decadent Publishing is primarily a romance house, but not only a romance house. They                        do put out many kinds of books.  There was no temptation, they wanted TRUMPET and we were ready to go.
*****
Brilliant and sassy Elizabeth Trumpet fantasizes starring on the London stage, but to become an actress in 1803 is tantamount to losing her virginity in the most debasing way.
After watching her mother die and her father lose his mind, the courageous sixteen-year-old must find a way to save her family. She scores her first acting job as a fencer—the deadly skill she learned from her brother training for the military. Blessed with talent and a rare singing voice, Lizzie pursues her career, learning from theatrical characters high and low.
When reckless actor Jonathan Faversham sets eyes on Miss Trumpet, he knows he’s found the partner of his life. But Faversham carries ruinous baggage from a dark past. Entangled in lust and ambition, Lizzie gives him her heart and they reach the heights together. Until Lizzie gets more applause than he…
From the magnificence of Regency palaces and the Theatre Royal Covent Garden to the sun-baked pyramids of Egypt and the arms of a real-life Samson, Lizzie is never far from trouble. As her brother rides to glory with Wellington in the Napoleonic Wars, great events threaten her survival. Danger lurks behind stage curtains, when a madman sets fire to take her life and she lifts a sword in revenge.
Will this once innocent girl, with her rise to stardom, be remembered for her art? Or for her shame?
Trumpet is published by Decadent Publishing, and is available from Amazon UK, Amazon US, All Romance eBooks, Smashwordsand all other good eBook retailers.
*****

COMMENT TO WIN!

Bill and Susan are generously giving away two prizes on this tour! One is their double memoir, Like Sands Through the Hourglass, and the second is Bill’s CD, This is Bill Hayes. Just leave a comment (please include your email address in the body of the comment) on this post to be entered. This giveaway is tour wide, and the more comments you leave, the more chance you have of winning, so check out the rest of the tour schedule here: http://www.writermarketing.co.uk/prpromotion/blog-tours/currently-on-tour/bill-susan-hayes/
Review:
Elizabeth Trumpet, was a young girl growing up with stars in her eyes about acting and she was very innocent and naïve about the people around here. She had tough choices to make at a young age that would certainly destroy her reputation and of course in the 1800’s reputation is everything.  She was forced to seek out a job after the sudden death of her mother, her father having run them into debt and not being able to return to work as the famous actor he was.  Elizabeth seeks out an acting job at a less than stellar theatre, where they put on odd plays and acts comparable to a circus show without the animals.  Her next theatre group is a traveling production, run by a man she is infatuated with and later marries. After her rise to fame, certain circumstances cause her to flee her homeland to America, where she stays with her grandparents. She meets up with her childhood friend Roger who is a widower. I am looking forward to reading more about them.
Along with her story, there are several secondary characters that are very interesting.  Trumpet is infused with history of that time period. The Italian Giovanni Belazoni who made amazing discoveries in Egypt, I would love to read a love story with him in it.  Her brother George is fighting in the Napoleon War. Her childhood friend Roger who lives in America and is a cotton farmer and owns a tailor shop and is friends with a pirate. I like that this story goes into so much depth about what is going on, the characters and the backstory.
Although I really loved this story, at some points there seemed to be so much going on. It got a little confusing sometimes.  I really wondered if that much back story was necessary to get the point across.  I think some if it made the story move so slow in the beginning. The second half was great. It had all the action and intrigue and lots of history, which I loved.   I really do hope there is another story for Elizabeth and Roger and one for her sister-in-law Emily.  
I recommend this book to anyone who loves to read historical romances with a little bit of intrigue and lots of history included.  This first part did read a little slow for me, but the second half more than makes up for it. I hope you enjoy! 
Ericka
4 Harlie’s

12 thoughts on “Trumpet by Bill and Susan Hayes-Interview & Review”

  1. I am still depressed at the demise of my beloved OLTL. I think the comment, this is more than a bodice ripper is a bit out of touch. Those went out of style many years ago.

  2. I was an avid watcher of Days of Our Lives for a very long time and the two of you were my favorite couple. I can't wait to read your book and feel so privileged to be published with the same company as your are. I'm definitely passing the word around on this book.

  3. Good interview! I hate to admit that I've never really watched soap operas – my parents never watched any and I just never got started on daytime soaps though I will admit to night time soaps. Trumpet sounds like a really interesting historical romance with a great back story. Thanks for the giveaway!

    junegirl63 at gmail dot com

  4. Great interview, Marika! Bill and Susan – thank you for sharing. I am a long time fan (30+ years) and I love historical fiction. Trumpet is a must read for me.

So what do you think?