How you started to write or what made you want to write?
I was reading 4-5 romance books a week while home on maternity leave with my newborn son, and 2 and 4 year-old daughters, and story ideas kept me awake at night. Well, that and my son. Within months I was writing my first book. I’d never planned on writing. I think it came from Mommy insomnia and insanity. Nine years later…
How did you get started?
I wrote a book, and then discovered the Maine Romance Writers. They’re awesome. I joined RWA and attended conferences. I worked on editing and revising and continued to write more. Two years ago my writing buddies pushed me to start seriously querying my manuscripts (I had written six by then). I entered a few contests and won each, then sent some queries. Among the piles of rejections there were also contracts.
Do you outline a story or do you go with the flow? What are the pros and cons about it?
I cook my stories in my head for a long time—months, sometimes years—before I start writing them. I’m super busy and don’t have a lot of time to write. By the time I open a new document and start Chapter One, I’ve run through the main plot points and twists and turns so many times in my head that the words simply flow.
Are there any other published books of yours?
I have a three-book series (each book is a stand alone), The McKay-Tucker Men, published through Liquid Silver Books in 2015, and the first book in my Wilde Sisters series, Sweet on You, comes out January 26, 2016 through Limitless Publishing.
What inspired you to write Sweet on You?
About five years ago I started taking Zumba classes. If I’m going to exercise, I want to have fun. The story idea sort of came to me while burning calories. I love to bake (hence the reason regular exercise is needed) and wanted to blend the two. Baker hero and fitness guru heroine. A match baked in heaven.
What is your favorite dessert recipe to make?
Oh, wow. I don’t do favorites. I can’t decide. There are too many awesome combinations: chocolate and coconut, chocolate and peanut butter, chocolate and caramel…you see the trend here, yes? I love trying new recipes, finding healthy substitutes, making new creations. I get bored easily and don’t have a “go-to” recipe. I’m known for always having a new recipe. You can check out my Pinterest board. I’ve probably made everything on there. (I made chocolate éclairs before sitting down to do this interview)
Do you write full time or part time?
I teach high school English full time and have three kiddos—9, 12 and 14—so writing comes third, although I’d love to swap that around and make it second, with the family coming first. Hopefully some day I’ll have a few NY Times best sellers under my belt and I’ll be able to do that.
Can you share a favorite quote/phrase of yours?
“Cinderella and Dorothy are proof that a pair of shoes can change your life.” I may have a small shoe obsession.
Can you share a funny anecdote that has happened to you as you’ve started to write or publish?
My friends’ husbands think my husband gets lucky all the time since I write romance and they assume I have sex on the brain all the time. Little do they know that I don’t go to bed when hubby does because I stay up late to write and/or read.
Do you have any kind of advice for aspiring authors?
Don’t stop. You’ve written that first book. Awesome! Take some classes, join your local writing group, read the genre that you write, write some more, then go back and revise. It’s good to step away from your WIP for a bit before revising. Keep writing and keep learning.