- If you could have been the original author of any book, what would it have been and why?
Harry Potter! I swear, every time I read through those books I am absolutely captivated, transported to this magical, fictional place. And those books are so beloved. To be able to write something that touches people to that degree would be amazing.
- What makes this particular genre you are involved in so special?
The Regency era has an elegance and refinement to it, but also a fun naughtiness. It’s so unlike the modern world, yet can carry many modern sensibilities. I’ve been drawn to it for so many years, I can’t even imagine writing anything else.
- How important is research to you when writing a book?
Incredibly important, though it can be daunting to get every single detail absolutely spot on. There’s a balance in historical romance, between the fantasy of it all and the realism. It’s that balance, giving a little in each direction, that makes the genre so captivating. But you still have to respect the time period, and especially the readers who love it.
- What works best for you: Typewriters, fountain pen, dictate, computer or longhand?
I start my books by fleshing them out with gel pens and spiral notebooks. Once I get my main characters and the central conflict fleshed out, I move to computer. Most of the actual writing is done straight to computer, though when I hit a roadblock in the story I work it out long hand.
- When did it dawn upon you that you wanted to be a writer?/What inspires you
I knew I wanted to write not long after I bought my first romance novel when I was just thirteen years old. I remember that trip to Waldenbooks vividly, and I still have the book. I was so transported, so inspired, I had to try my hand at it. I don’t remember ever thinking I could do it better. I just wanted to do it, too. It was a dream for so many years, one of those things you see as unattainable but still like to turn over in your head every now and then. It wasn’t until my youngest started school, though, that I actually became serious about it. I was selling my paintings at the time, and was at a cross roads: either work toward becoming a children’s book illustrator, or write. I came across a letter from my late grandfather just then, in which he had written he couldn’t wait for me to become a published author. That set my course then and there.
- Do you read much and if so who are your favorite authors?
I love reading. The ones I gravitate toward are other historical romance authors, such as Julia Quinn, Tessa Dare, and Sarah MacLean, among (many) others. When I’m actively writing I have to read in my subgenre, otherwise the flavor of my writing is off. I just can’t get the right historical feel. When I’m editing I’ll read contemporaries, especially Adriana Anders. I also adore anything by Courtney Milan or Alyssa Cole, both in contemporary and historical romance.