Having been born and raised on Long Island, New York, my husband and I were both eager to leave the urban lifestyle behind and explore our futures. With his encouragement I'm living my dream of writing romance novels full time.
Our new rural setting allows us to enjoy time together and gives me guiltless hours in my imagination indulging my other passion. When I realized my works consistently tended towards the erotic, I gave myself permission to explore places I might not venture in real life.
Q: What is your writing day like?
A: Over the years my husband and I have found a general routine that works for both of us. I try to check my e-mail around 9:00 a.m. to see what the overnight brought. Since retiring, it's a treat to have breakfast with my husband and linger over a second and third cup of coffee. Than I'm off to the computer room while he heads to his work shop.
I generally check the mail around noon and after taking care of any required business details I settle down to write. Every day is different depending on the project I'm working on. I check the mail one last time and by five, we meet up on the back deck for a glass of wine to discuss our afternoons. The evenings are strictly private time, I'm never on the computer, but I do hand write notes in spiral notebooks with thin point pens to reference the next day. (I use different color inks to determine characters in dialogue while drafting.) I also paper edit in the evenings, generally not the story I'm currently working on but a project that was put aside for breathing space.
Q: What is your work environment like?
A: I hate daylight savings time! I prefer a dark, cave like atmosphere to drown out the real world and explore the ones I create. In summer, the blinds are drawn and I usually have a few candles lit year round. I find citrus and peppermint scents work best for me. My desk has to be clean, only the project I'm working on can be scattered around me.
Q: Do you outline your stories?
A: Sometimes. Most stories are researched and outlined before I sit down to write, especially the historical details. Other stories push their way forward and I write and research at the same time. I prefer to outline, but it doesn't always work that way. And yes, I am the lady with her shopping cart pushed to the side of the isle scribbling notes on the back of my shopping list.
Q: When did you know that you wanted to write?
A: I'm ashamed to admit I wasn't a reader as a child, rather watched the movies to classic stories. I was babysitting in my teens and picked up a Harlequin novel when boredom struck; this was before the days of cable.
It was a Betty Neels romance and I was hooked. Through strife and struggle, the gal always got her guy. That was it for me, the happy ending. While not possible in real life, in the land of Harlequin I knew they'd come together. My love for reading was born.
Q: Who is your favorite author?
A: Nora Roberts, without question. I've never been disappointed by her stories and always long for the next one due.
Q: What do you like about writing?
A: The control.
Q: What don't you like about writing?
A: I hate my computer. I wasn't brought up with them and used my first one as a word processor. I have a love/hate relationship with the internet. When it works it's an amazing tool, when it's cranky as my dial up often is it becomes my nemesis. I've often thought to chuck my monitor through the window but refrain when I realize the cost and work to replace the window! I've learned to walk away, make a cup of coffee and try again.
Q: What is your ultimate goal for your writing?
A: For me writing is inside, pushing outward usually at the most inopportune times, (remember the grocery store). I want my readers to know there will be an interesting story with a sensual and erotic twist. I hope when they finish a novel of mine, they're content with the short escape from reality and look forward to the next one. One day I'd love to have my erotic fiction go hard cover.
Q: If stranded on an island, what four things would you want with you?
A: My husband, beyond sex, he's a handy guy to have around. A never ending supply of chocolate, a solar powered computer with internet and spiral notebooks with thin point pens. The rest would work itself out.
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