Take a Walk on the Wild Side with Heather McCollum

Heather McCollum and I teamed up for a recent blog tour and had a lot of fun encouraging our fans to take a walk on the wild side and read across genres. Some fans read a wide variety of genres already…others prefer one over the other. Either way, we encourage you to enjoy a good book in any genre and feed your brain! Now, here’s my fabulous blog tour partner and talented Entangled author, Heather… 

reading2 (425x640)Hello everyone! I’m Heather McCollum, and I’m so excited to have partnered up with Misty Evans for a joint blog tour to celebrate our two new releases! My novella, UNTAMED HEARTS, is a 16th century romance that follows a pirate into the Scottish Highlands. Misty’s novella, THE PERFECT HOSTAGE, is a romantic suspense story featuring a Spec Ops hero from her Super Agent Series.

One story is obviously historical while the other is contemporary. Most readers have a preference of subgenres, and some will not dare to dangle even a toe into the other genre pond. I, myself, usually pick up a British historical romance before a contemporary military or western romance. I know what to expect in the English and Scottish settings and language, especially when reading my favorite authors. The stories are comfortable and the “ride” I take to reach the end of the journey is as familiar, fun and wonderful as usual.

Untamed_Hearts_300TPH_300As Misty and I discussed our two very different novellas, we realized that both involve characters taking a large risk. Our heroines both take a “walk on the wild side” and try something new. And in both cases, the payoff is hugely gratifying. That got us thinking about the benefits of taking risks, stepping out of the box and diving into something completely different.

The following quotes are from The Franklin Institute of Science and discuss our brain health.

“Mental stimulation improves brain function and actually protects against cognitive decline…”

“Throughout life, your neural networks reorganize and reinforce themselves in response to new stimuli and learning experiences.”

“Consider your brain a muscle, and find opportunities to flex it. ‘Read, read, read,’ says Dr. Amir Soas of Case Western Reserve University Medical School in Cleveland.”

The article gives various ways to improve cognitive strength throughout our lives.  It recommends physical activity, learning a new language, as well as using your non-dominant hand for tasks like brushing teeth or moving a computer mouse. Basically doing something new or trying to do something familiar in a different way.

So Misty and I proposed to readers – “take a walk on the wild side” and try a new sNet_Application_BrainRepair_02[1]ubgenre of romance. All reading stimulates the brain and reading something outside your area of familiarity could add even more stimulus. To prove this we are asking for volunteers. All we ask is for you to let us put electrodes all over your head (we’ll only shave about 6 dime-sized sections) so we can record your brain activity while reading your usual subgenre and then reading something completely different. Anybody? Hello?

<Giggle. Snort.> Okay, even if you did volunteer (curiosity can lead us to do crazy things), Misty and I have decided to just leave our hypothesis out there for a team of scientists to grab and run with while we continue to write amazing stories for you all to read.

But, we are still asking you to take a risk, try something new, and take a walk on the wild side. If you usually read historical romances, try out Misty’s THE PERFECT HOSTAGE. If you normally enjoy contemporary romantic suspense novels, try out UNTAMED HEARTS for a change. Both books are novellas so the time investment and money investment are minimal.

And who knows, maybe after wading in the other pond you might decide to plunge into the other subgenre altogether (clothes optional)! Who knows what will happen! But no matter what, your brain will thank you for reading and so will we.

Readers…do you have a favorite genre?

More information about Heather McCollum can be found on her web site: http://www.HeatherMcCollum.com. She can also be found on Twitter at @HMcCollumAuthor and on her Facebook author page http://www.facebook.com/HeatherMcCollumAuthor .



About Misty Evans

USA Today Bestselling Author Misty Evans writes the award-winning Super Agent series, as well as urban fantasy and paranormal romance. She likes her coffee black, her conspiracy theories juicy, and her wicked characters dressed in couture. When her muse lets her on the internet to play, she’s on Facebook and Twitter.
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4 Responses to Take a Walk on the Wild Side with Heather McCollum

  1. Edie Ramer says:

    This is so interesting! I already read multi-genres. If I read the same genre all the time, the books start to feel the same. I can predict what will happen next. Right now I’m reading sci fi and a YA. (Two different books.) And I don’t write books in either category!

    It sounds like a fun pairing. Thanks for stopping off at MM to tell us about it. 🙂

  2. Amy R says:

    Hi Heather – while I do have a couple of favorite genres (contemporary romance and rom suspense) I do read outside the lines if you will. Misty was one that got me reading paranormal romance and Michelle Diener here at MM got me reading some historical. I am always surprised when I try a new type of book and love it. Congrats on the release and I’ll go check out your story!

  3. Mary Hughes says:

    Hi Heather! I love the idea of mixing it up to keep the mind fresh. Big risks for big rewards makes both exciting life and story. Both Untamed Hearts and The Perfect Hostage sound great!! and what a great idea to pair them, like opposite battery posts, wonderful energy. Congratulations on your release!

  4. Welcome to MM, Heather. And your cover is so great!

    I read across the board of genres, and love trying something new. Even horror, which I don’t really find myself that attracted to, I will read if the story looks good enough.

    All the best with your and Misty’s great pairing!

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