It's been a lifelong love for me, has darts. I was brought up with legends such as John Lowe, Jocky Wilson and Eric Bristow. I even remember Phil Taylor when he had a moustache... And when I first started watching back in the 1970s you were lucky if you could see the dartboard through the cigarette smoke, in fact, when I look back at old clips of any Embassy World Darts tournament now it makes me wonder how half of them could throw an arrow straight when pints were being downed between legs and you were aiming through a thick curtain of smog. Things have changed quite a bit since those days... But those were the days that formed and then sealed my love of darts. I mean, what other sport is there where you can be surrounded by Captain America, a dozen smurfs and Deadpool while you’re watching the matches take place?
But darts, and romance? Really? Yes, really. Granted, it's not the most romantic of sports, and it's not exactly been blessed with its fair share of eye-candy, either, so, a few years ago now, when I said I was going to write a light-hearted comedy romance featuring a professional darts player as the main male character, I got questioning looks and lots of "that'll never work" comments. Quite a few of those, actually, as it happens...
That didn’t deter me, though. Because, when I write I usually go with a gut instinct, and my gut instinct was that darts and romance can go very nicely together, thank you. OK, so it was never really going to work if my male lead resembled an overweight, cigarette-puffing stereotypical 70s-style darts player. I mean, I'm not sure the late, great Jocky Wilson – as talented as he was – could ever have been described as eye-candy. And, to be fair, with the popularity of darts growing, and more and more younger players taking to the oche, there are actually some pretty nice-looking arrow throwers starting to emerge now... not that I’m shallow or anything...
But, I’m an author, and that requires the use of a certain amount of imagination. And in my head I had the perfect, good-looking, slightly arrogant but still-quite-hot darts player. But where was I going to set this story? I wasn’t sure a booze-filled arena full of loud darts fans dressed as various superheroes was the best backdrop, so, I had a think about this, and came up with the perfect idea. I once lived on the island of Tenerife, and it was a place I absolutely adored, and seeing as I’d always intended this book to be a bit of a summer read, all of a sudden Tenerife became the perfect setting for a fun, light-hearted romantic comedy set in a place I love, centreing around a game I love! Just came to me out of the blue that did, and so 'Too Much Trouble in Paradise' was born! Throw in a Take That tribute band to cover my hard-habit-to-break-obsession of the ultimate boy/man band, a handsome TV actor to add a little bit of glamour, and a gorgeous Spanish nemesis to contrast with the Northern (but still quite sexy) darts player, and I had my story! And I loved writing every second of that book. It was easy, all of a sudden, to mix the magic of darts with the magic of romance, and create a funny, sometimes touching, story of sun, sea and romantic mis-haps.
So, yes, darts and romance can mix. An unlikely pairing, but get it right, and you really can hit that bullseye!
Having already read and reviewed Too Much Trouble in Paradise, I can whole heartedly agree that Darts and Romance can mix. Thank you so much Michelle for this great darts post, and I live for the day where real life Darts players look like yours!
Michelle Betham is an ex-media technician turned author of hot, edgy, gritty romance, usually involving rock stars, sports stars, and bikers. But not usually all in the same book. Yet… She is both self-published and published through HarperImpulse, a division of HarperCollins Publishers.
Addicted to binge-watching TV dramas she struggles to think of a life before Netflix or Amazon Prime, loves rock music, tattoos, spicy food, superheroes (including an unhealthy obsession with Iron Man), and Keanu Reeves – a crush that's lasted well over twenty years, and one she blames entirely on 'Point Break'. The original. She refuses to acknowledge any remake exists…
Her dream is to ride a Harley. And visit Las Vegas. And be able to eat any amount of chocolate without putting on weight.
She lives in County Durham, north-east England, with her husband and West Highland Terrier, where she can be found most days drinking tea and making up stories.
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Michelle Betham is always very generous to my followers and today is no exception, as she has a kindle copy of Too Much Trouble in Paradise.
Giveaway - Win a kindle copy of Too Much Trouble in Paradise (Open Internationally)
Giveaway open Internationally, all options are voluntary, but please do what they ask, as I will be verifying the winner. Giveaway closes 23:59 20/8/2016. Winner will be announced on twitter and emailed, and they will need to reply within 7 days, or forfeit the prize, and I will re-draw for a new winner. Good luck everyone.