Monday, July 25, 2011
Interview with romance author Melissa McClone
Romance author Melissa McClone is our guest today. She's doing a virtual book tour with Goddess Fish Promotions for her newest release Not-So-Perfect Princess.
Melissa is giving away a $20 Amazon gift certificate at the end of the tour to a lucky commentor. Details below.
Melissa McClone writes for Harlequin Romance. Her November 2010 release Christmas Magic on the Mountain was a 2011 RITA® Finalist in the Contemporary Series Category.
She graduated from Stanford University with a degree in mechanical engineering, but quit her job to write romance novels. Writing happily ever afters is a lot more fun than analyzing jet engine performance. She lives in the Pacific Northwest with her husband, three children, four cats, and a dog named Chaos.
Welcome, Melissa. Please tell us about your current release.
Not-So-Perfect Princess is part of Harlequin Romance's Once Upon A Kiss miniseries. Each story is loosely based on a classic fairytale. I used the tale of Sleeping Beauty for mine. It's set on an island in the Mediterranean off the coast of Spain. You'll find royalty, sailing and a cute stray kitten in the story! Here's the back cover blurb:
Dutiful Princess Julianna has a secret—she’s actually happiest makeup free, sailing with the sea breeze in her hair. Her attraction to rebel prince Alejandro is instant—but her intended is his brother, the proper but dull Enrique!
For the first time, Julianna’s irresistibly tempted. Before long, she’s spending her nights sailing with gorgeous Alejandro while the rest of the palace believes she’s sleeping. Soon she’ll have to choose—remain the perfect princess, or follow her heart and stop sleepwalking her way through life.…
What inspired you to write this book?
My heroine in this book has been a secondary character in two other stories—If the Ring Fits… (Silhouette Romance 4/00) and Expecting Royal Twins! (Harlequin Romance 2/11). If you notice the release dates, I had a big break between writing my next royalty themed story. But I've wanted to write Julianna's story for years, but I was so busy writing other stories I never had the time to write hers.
When I wrote a different royalty-themed story (Expecting Royal Twins!) it was the perfect opportunity to introduce Julianna to Harlequin readers. Before I could ask my editor if I could write her book next, I was offered a spot in the Once Upon a Kiss miniseries and could use Julianna as my heroine.
What exciting story are you working on next?
I'm having so much fun with my work-in-progress. I'm writing a Harlequin Romance (working title Goal…Wedding!) about a professional soccer player and a woman who her nephew's guardian while his parents, reservists in the military, are deployed overseas. The nephew's soccer team is what brings the hero and heroine together. Balls fly as well as sparks!
When did you first consider yourself a writer?
I considered myself a writer the first time I completed a 50K word manuscript. It was promptly (and thankfully) rejected. But I learned enough about the craft of writing as well as the romance genre to call myself a writer.
Do you write full-time? If so, what's your work day like? If not, what do you do other than write and how do you find time to write?
I'm a full-time mom so most of my writing happens when I'm waiting for one of them at a practice/activity or in the early morning/late evening when the kids are asleep. But I'm guessing if I add all those writing hours up each day, I could call myself a full-time writer, too.
I have a nifty word processor called an Alphasmart that I use for drafting. Using my Alphie really helps my daily word count! Also, I never find time to write. I make time to write. If I didn't do that, I'd never get anything done. With three kids and a bunch of pets, someone always needs me. Making time isn't easy. But I've cut out a lot of things I used to do. Now I watch only one television show a week. I also don't do a lot of socializing except for an occasional breakfast or lunch with a friend.
What would you say is your interesting writing quirk?
I write the first three chapters of a story then I write the end of the book. I have to know where I'm going or I get stuck. The last chapter isn't always the same as what's published. I've tried not writing the end, but I can't move forward without it.
As a child, what did you want to be when you grew up?
I think what I wanted to be changed depending on my age and the day! I do remembering wanting to be a doctor at one point. I talked about that seriously enough my dad thought I should volunteer as a Candy Striper to see if I liked working in medicine. It didn't take me long to realize I didn't want to be a doctor.
Anything additional you want to share with the readers?
Thanks for letting me visit with you today. It's been fun! If you have any questions for me, please post them in the comment section and I'll answer them.
Thank you, Melissa.
Readers, remember, Melissa is giving away a $20 Amazon gift certificate at the end of her tour. Leaving a comment below will enter you to win, but you can have more chances if you follow the tour and comment. The more you comment, the better chance of winning.