Many people don’t like the movie Titanic. I think it has a lot to do with how popular it became. It had the Celine Dion song (which I never liked and never will!). It had teenagers going to see it 5 or 6 times in the theater. And it Leo-mania, which really got played out. So, people got sick of the movie and public adoration turned to hatred.
Me? I love the movie! It has a good hero and heroine you can root for, a dastardly villain, and a sinking ship going down in frigid waters in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean with no one around to save the crew and passengers. It’s an absolutely terrifying situation to be placed in. Which makes it so riveting.
For a while, I actually wished I could have been on that ship. That’s seriously messed up, but it would have been so exciting (and like I said, absolutely terrifying) to be placed in that predicament.
When I began outlining my novel, The Flame of Eternity, I basically wanted to write Titanic…on land. Instead of frigid water, I’d have a raging fire. Instead of a heroine about to potentially marry an arrogant ass, I wrote about a woman married to a man who never talked. Instead of a scrappy, charismatic hero, I wrote about a scrappy loner no one understood.
And I set this tale on the day of the Great Chicago Fire, the greatest natural disaster of the 19th Century. Why this fire? Because it decimated the city. Plus, I’m from Chicago, and I love writing about my birthplace.
This novel holds a special place in my heart because of my aforementioned desire to be at the center of a horrifying story like Titanic. Other reasons I love this book: there isn’t just one treacherous villain, but there are also a couple nasty henchmen. There are a few humorous spots, some potential for a romance, twists and lots of suspense.
The story centers around two people: the 7th wealthiest man in the world, Preston LeClerc and his young protégé, a small-time banker named Terrance Fogg, who is in love with his married best friend, and he’s also the only person who can save thousands from losing their life savings.
I loved setting these two men against each other. It’s a test of wills, which quickly turns into a violent game of retribution wrapped inside a game of cat and mouse…all the while, an entire city burns.
Every novelist seeks to top herself with every new novel. I wrote this book years ago, and I’m not sure if I’ll ever top it. I’ll try, of course, but as I said, there’s something very special about this one!