Did you always want to be a writer?
Yes and no. (Ha, can you tell I went to law school with that non-answer?) I always wanted to try writing after high school, but I didn’t think I had the creative talent. I never thought my style was particularly unique, and I didn’t believe I could write something as long as a novel. My style was suited to legal briefs and academic papers as far as I was concerned. That began to change for me after the birth of my second child who would not sleep through the night until he was almost eighteen months. (It’s amazing where you’re mind will wander when you’re sleep-deprived and it’s 3:00 am.) I began writing while doing all the inglorious things that mothers do in the middle of the night. And then, I started coming up with ideas for my own Regency town…
You mentioned “Edenbrooke” on your “About Me” page, and I see it elsewhere on this website. Can you say a little bit more about it?
Absolutely! I spent nearly a year creating my little town of Edenbrooke before I began to write my first novel in the series. I took the homey, community feeling of some of my favorite towns in literature and television and poured it into my Regency era village. Novels such as Emma, Little House on the Prairie, and Cranford inspired me as well as shows like Parks and Rec and The Gilmore Girls. Edenbrooke has a detailed history, both happy and sad, that impacts its residents. The townsfolk have stories full of heartbreak and mirth, and everyone knows everyone else’s business in such a small town. Who needs privacy anyway?
When can we expect to see your next book?
It could be awhile, but let’s hope it’s soon! I’m rather married to the idea of traditional publishing for now, and I need to find a publisher. I might consider self-publishing some short stories before then, but I have no set plans.
How would you describe your writing style?
I’ve gotten enough feedback to answer this one—it’s an odd marriage of comedy and angst. I’m one of those people who laughs at inopportune times and see humor in even the worst moments—and that comes out in my work. I tend to write stories with very high quotients of drama and humor. I like strong heroines and heroes that aren’t quite perfect and frequently explore themes of community, forgiveness, loneliness, and self-worth.
I read your bio. Crime-fighting. Really?
Once, I had a dream of being a super-hero. It was dashed at a young age when I got between two boys who were fighting in preschool. I thought I could stop them because I was certain I was Wonder-Woman. My black eye afterward said otherwise.
Do you have an agent?
Yes, I am represented by the wonderful Patricia Nelson of the Marsal Lyon Literary Agency.
Who are your favorite authors?
Among today’s romance writers, Julia Quinn, Lisa Kleypas and Tessa Dare are the ones I run to the store to get their latest works. Recently, I’ve been happily reading Courtney Milan and Sabrina Jeffries among dozens of others. Growing up, I adored Judith McNaught, Catherine Coulter and Julie Garwood. Then, in the broader world of fiction, my heroes are Jane Austen, George Eliot, Elizabeth Gaskell, Edith Wharton, Mark Twain and Leo Tolstoy. I also grew up reading a ton of Arthurian literature, and it wouldn’t surprise me one day to write my own “Arthurian” romance novel.
Loves aside from books? Dislikes?
M&M’s (I am a convinced Mars owes me something for my life-long loyalty and patronage), 1990’s metal music, antique furniture and china, sushi and flat shoes. Dislikes? Exercise (particularly anything that occurs in a room better-suited to a slaughterhouse with all the hooks in the ceiling), the mall or any super-store during the holidays, and heights.
Is your dog really that awful?
He barks at his food if it sits lopsided in the bowl. He won’t stop until I come and shake it level. If he were human, I’d probably take a restraining order out on him given how he can’t be happy unless he’s within three feet of me. It took us five years to get him fully potty-trained–many rugs were lost in the war. To be honest, though, he is very sweet and gentle, which is why we keep him around.
Still, his breath could be weaponized.