Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Guests: Megan Hart and Lauren Dane

Welcome two fab chicks to the convertible today!

Thanks to Michele and all the lovely ladies of Riding With The Top Down for having us here today. We thought we’d talk about what it was like to write our recent release, Taking Care of Business, out now from Black Lace (and the sequel, No Reservations, due out this fall!)

Annnnd…live from IM, it’s a direct transcript of our conversation!

Lauren Dane: So, what's it like to write with someone as uber-fabulous as Lauren Dane?
Megan Hart: It's pretty awesome, especially when she talks about cupcakes. My favorite part about working with LD is that she has the same sense of humor as I do, so we can get up to hijinks together. Also, I like to refer to her as LD, and talk about her in like, third person even when I'm talking TO her. Like now.
Lauren Dane: It could suck to work with another person. It has sucked in the past. So when you do a group project it's sort of like it was back in ninth grade. You don't want that girl who looks at her split ends all class long.
Megan Hart: Or the one who has to be led by the hand.
Lauren Dane: The one who ate paste until the 6th grade.
Megan Hart: The one who put the dead bird in her locker "for later."
Lauren Dane: heee! Or that one boy who picked his nose a lot. Okay, we're tangenting. Shocking!
Megan Hart: Now that we're done with No Reservations, though, we don't really even have an excuse for it.
Lauren Dane: Yes, IM can be a huge help when you're doing a joint project. You can check in really quickly, trade snippets of text back and forth. Oh and talk about boyz and stuff.
Megan Hart: Well, sure, we always have to talk about boyz. It's part of the job.
Lauren Dane: RESEARCH
Megan Hart: One of the best parts about writing together was getting to talk about boyz. Because we both like sort of different "types."
Lauren Dane: We do. We both have types in a big way, but we don't have to share since we don't usually go in for the same thing. And by share, I mean in a purely imaginary way since Gerard Butler has that paper that says I can't get closer than 500 feet.
Megan Hart: Haha! You can have Gerry. I'll take Keanu, my second husband. One thing we DO share, though is the passion for writing hot, passionate romance with deeply emotional P.O.V. Oops, I said passion twice.
Lauren Dane: RED PEN
Lauren Dane: NO! Wear your shame! Okay, back on topic - for Taking Care of Business, we both wrote separate short novels because originally that's how we'd planned to package the book. But our editor had something else in mind and asked us to write it as a single story. So we did our separate stories and then used a Google shared doc to bring it all together. That last part was sort of a pain because of compatibility issues and weird formatting, but I think the book turned out really well. The next book, No Reservations, we planned differently from day one. We took every other chapter, had a rough outline of how each character arc would go and we went back and forth.
Megan Hart: And for that one, the WRITING was a little more difficult, but the editing was a snap, whereas TCOB was the opposite. And by difficult, I mean it was still like, the easiest book I've ever written.
Lauren Dane: LOL! The best thing about these books is that an author doesn't always have purely fun projects to work on with their besties. These books were different from my normal routine, but really, totally stress free. I know Megan feels the same as I do about the big stuff like deadlines, etc. So the big stuff was not anything I needed to worry over. Yes, I don't know that I'd do this with anyone else, LOL
Megan Hart: Yeah, ditto. Though of course the potential is always there to have it turn into a huge, frothing ball of seething fury with your writing partner. It's sort of like rooming with your best friend from elementary school when you go away to college: you either end up not speaking or coming out of it engaged. I'm happy to say, LD and I are engaged.
Lauren Dane: Wheee! We're engaged. So this is it really. We wrote a contemporary so we didn’t have to build a world. We just had to keep the story moving in a direction we could both work with, which was easy since at the end of TCOB we said, "Kate and Leah should totally go to Vegas. How can we get them there?"
Megan Hart: And we just took it from there! And we should mention, of course, that we came up with the original idea while standing in line at RT. I wonder what this year's RT will bring us.
Lauren Dane: Heh! Yes, this whole thing sprang from our friendship, which kept it fun and easygoing when it could have gone the other way. We knew the deadlines, we worked them into our schedules and we wrote. It was surprisingly easy and really fun and I'm thrilled the book shows that. Or I think it does, LOL.
Megan Hart: I think it does, too! And it was fabulous fun. And, of course, not based on anything that ever happened in real life.
Lauren Dane: Not ever. No way.
Megan Hart: Okay! Let's wrap this up...we are Dane/Hart, we do a Discuss over at so stop on over if you want to watch us in action. Or find us at our individual sites, and and We'll be at RT again this year, so if you'll be there, make sure to say hello!
Lauren Dane: We're having a workshop on writing with your BFF and not killing her as well as a reader party with loads of swag so consider yourselves invited.
Megan Hart: But please don't hug me.
Lauren Dane: she wants lots of smooches. On her face. Be sure to caress her face.
Megan Hart: ERGGGG!
Lauren Dane: should we do a contest/giveaway?
Megan Hart: sure!
Lauren Dane: okay, how about one lucky winner gets a copy of Taking Care of Business sent directly from Barnes and Noble?
Megan Hart: Sounds good to me. We’ll pull one commenter by Friday, April 17th to win a copy of the book!


Anonymous said...

hey ladies gla d are here

congrats on teh books an dgreat reviews. please count me in


lois greiman said...

Thanks for joining us in the convert. You guys sound like you had so much fun. I want to play. At least I always think that while I'm sitting here all by my lonesome. Anybody want to write a...something with me? :)

AuthorM said...

Hi, kh! Glad to see you here.

Heya, Lois...writing with Lauren was such a blast I'd do it again in a heartbeat. But just remember what I said about choosing your partner -- it has the potential to end badly! And part of the fun was that writing CAN be such a lonesome thing, so having an "excuse" to chat every day with my friend and call it writing was great.

Will you be at RT this year?


AuthorM said...

PS-- Lois, at first I read convert as CONVENT.

And I thought well THAT sure isn't the right place for me!

Lauren said...

Thanks so much, ladies, for having us today!

KH - thanks for stoppin in to say hello.

LOL, Lois! It's a whole lot of fun, I have to admit.

Kylie said...

Welcome ladies! If your book is as fun reading as your conversation, it should be a blast!

BookstoreDeb said...

Hi Girls. The book sounds fantastic and if it is as much fun as your chats, then it will be a winner!

Scott said...

Please count me in as well. I'd love to read TCOB!

Bonnie Rose Leigh said...

Hilarious and fun interview type post. Loved it.

Helen Brenna said...

Hey Megan and Lauren! Welcome!

You guys do sound like you have too much fun with this. I'm jealous.

No, wait. On second thought, I don't think I could ever write a book with someone else. Sorry, Lois. I don't play well with others. Too controlling, too much of a perfectionist.

Do you each still write your own books while working on these projects together?

Michele Hauf said...

Welcome, ladies! I'm just wondering if you've ever really wanted to do a smack-down with the other because of frustration? Or has it been pretty smooth sailing?

And everyone, you must visit their danehart blog. Great, fun stuff.

AuthorM said...

*waves at everyone* Thanks for the welcome!

Helen -- Yep, we were both still working on our own books while writing both Taking Care of Business and No Reservations.

Michele -- Surprisingly, no. Well, maybe LD felt like smacking me. I don't know.


tetewa said...

I enjoy both of your reads and can't wait to read this one! You two are hilarious together congrats on the release!

Kathleen said...

Meghan I am a big fan of your books, and Lauren I have not had the pleasure of reading any of your works yet. But I will be reading these books and I know I will be come a big fan of yours too!!
I cannot wait to get my hands of these books.

Anonymous said...

Funny interview. The video of the two of you, each telling your side of the story, is a hoot too!

I don't have TCOB, something I definitely need on my bookshelf.

Great to find y'all at one of my regular blog hangouts!

lois greiman said...

No RT for me this year.

Lauren Dane said...

Kylie - thanks for the welcome!

Deb - LOL, it is a lot of fun, I must admit.

Hello Scott!

Bonnie Rose - aw thanks!

Helen - yep, we both have other books being written/edited, etc as we write a joint project.

Michele - I gotta be totally honest and say no. It really is pretty smooth, I think partly because we know each other so well and we know we could say, "hop to it!" or whatever, if we had to.

Tetewa - thanks very much.

Kathleen - well thank you. I hope you enjoy them.

Cyndi - hey there, fancy seeing you here!

Debra Dixon said...

Hey Lauren and Megan! Welcome to the 'vertible!

Loved the blog. I can sooo relate as apart of the core author-team for the MOSSY CREEK series, which is a series of "collective novels" in which 10-14 people attempt to write a short story that contributes to the whole of the novel. Some stories stand alone but move the central arc forward and use the shared world and other stories have to work closely together.

Always interesting! So, I'll have to pick up TCOB. Sounds fun and I'll enjoy seeing how you guys worked this out.

Melissa said...

Hey Lauren and Megan~~
LOL, you guys always crack me up!! Congrats on the engagement...and hope you guys do another hilarious clip from RT this year.
I already have TCOB, so don't enter me, but loved reading the 'interview', lol.

Cathy M said...

What a perfect workshop idea: working with your bff and not killing her. Love it and bet you will all have a blast.

Betina Krahn said...

Hey there, Lauren and Megan! Welcome and we hope you're enjoying the wind in your hair!

You guys are so lucky to have found sympatico writing as partners! I've started working on a project with my sister and we have a really good time while dreaming up stuff. Getting in down on a page, however. . . we're still working on that. One of my perennial problems is having too many options and not knowing which will turn out to be best. It's even worse with two fertile brains coming up with ideas! So many options, so little time.

Is that a problem for you L&M? How do you guys work that out?

Laura Breck said...

Thank you for sharing your secrets. My critique partner and I have discussed writing together, but we're 2,000 miles apart. So now I know - long distance relationships CAN work.
I look forward to reading your book.
Laura Breck

AuthorM said...

tetewa: thanks!

Hi, Kathleen! Hope you like TCOB.

Arkansas Cyndi, thanks for checking us out.

Deb -- that sounds like what we'd planned, sort of, but then we had to do what the editor wanted which was create one complete story...gotta do what the editor wants!

Betina: We didn't really have too much of a problem getting the ideas down -- I think having our own hero/heroine pair helped a lot. We could each focus on "our" story and then share how the two would intersect and relate.

Lisa Ferris said...

Love, Love, Love your books individually, can't wait to read the collaborative effort!

When I grow up, I want to live in a world with the hot men for your books. What more could you ask for…?

THANKS, LADIES for the hours of entertainment and (ahem) MENTAL stimulation.


catie said...

Hehe, reading you two is a blast! So glad your friendship survived working together so beautifully. More collaborations--encore, encore! (And of course, more boyz please). *WEG*

Venus Vaughn said...

YAY! Comments :)

I'm really interested to read TCOB in comparison to Hart's other stand alone projects.

And then maybe pick up a few Dane books and add them to the comparison... So many books, so little time.

robynl said...

hi ladies and welcome. I know you from your contest on the blog when TCOB was released. I love your clips where both of you talk to each other. A good time in my day.

Congrats on your book!!!

Lisa F. said...

Oh please count me in! I love both of your books. I been wanted to read this one, but I haven't had the chance to get to the book store.

Susan said...

I couldn't have enjoyed your post more! :-) I'm so looking forward to reading TCOB.

flchen1 said...

Megan and Lauren, it's always fabulous to read your writing, whether in books or a blog! Was TCOB your first collaborative writing effort? Do you have more planned after No Reservations? You know, since you've got a good thing going and are engaged and all? :)

Cindy Gerard said...

Hey Lauren and Megan. Welcome to the topdown. sorry I'm chiming in so late but i was out and about today.
I agree with Lois. It sounds like you two have way too much fun. Carry on, ladies and best of luck with the new release!!

kalynnick said...

Hey Lauren and Megan! Just drop by to say hi!

P.S Just got UNDERCOVER(by Lauren) in the mail today. I want to start right way but have finals are next week so need to study

Amy S. said...

Hi Lauren and Megan! Taking Care of Business sounds great! Congrats on the new release Lauren! Thanks for the chance to win.

Lori T said...

Hi Lauren and Megan~

Great interview and Taking Care of Business sounds great!

I love watching your Dane/Hart Discuss blogs. They are always so much fun.

I would love to be included in the contest. Have a great day!

Anonymous said...

your videos are cool too
love the stripper yuck video and laurens expressions


Caffey said...

Hey Megan & Lauren! This interview was so fun to read!! How long have you both known each other for?

I won't be at RT but looking forward to what you come up with at the line then!

Blodeuedd said...

lol, such a fun interview :D
Yup I am in :)

AuthorM said...

Thanks so much to everyone for the comments and for stopping by to say hello and for visiting our Dane Hart Discuss! ;)


Maureen said...

It looked like you two had a great time writing this book. I'd love to win it.

I Heart Book Gossip said...

Love the interview. Count me in for the contest.

Anonymous said...

I love reading all the comments.

Happy Weekend to all.

Count me in too for the draw.

Pat L..

Eshani said...

Hi Megan and Lauren,
Your IM conversations are just as entertaining as the video blogs that you do, I can't imagine how much fun you two have when you actually get together :)
So I went to borders last weekend looking for TCOB, and they didn't have any copies left..grr! I'm hoping to find myself a copy this weekend, and save it as a treat for myself after finishing my research paper :)
Happy friday everyone..