1) Did you set any goals for 2011?
My overarching goal was to get published by the time I turn 40. I'm published now, and I'm not yet 40, although I didn't make it with a lot of time to spare! Still, I'll take it.
2) What is the best part of the writing process for you? I love revision. I often begin a second draft feeling that the first one is absolute dreck, so I'm often pleasantly surprised when I read over my manuscript and find parts that I quite like. It's always a challenge to find the parts that don't work, analyze what's wrong, and to fix it.
3) The worst part? The first draft. My plotting skills are non-existent, and I often fly by the seat of my parts. I often have to rework and change things as I go to accommodate plot changes that I make on the fly, and I'm never sure if I'm going to end up with anything coherent. I often liken the process of writing a first draft to delivering a 14-pound baby with no anesthesia. I much prefer the process of childrearing or, in this case, revision.
4) What is the book you wish you’d written? In romance, anything by Laura Kinsale. I still find her first book, The Hidden Heart, to be quite remarkable, 20-plus years after its initial publication.
5) Favourite author/s & book/s? Maybe it isn't very imaginative for a romance novelist to cite, but it's Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen. I simply can't think of a finer love story written in the English language. (I deeply suspect, but can't prove, that there are few better written in any language!)
6) Tell us about your latest release? Montana Belle, a western novella set in 1886 Montana Territory. It's the love story between Augusta Springer, who is brought back to her father's ranch in Montana after years spent in Boston at an exclusive ladies' school, and Joshua Bradley, the older boy she idolized before she left. Augusta has come to love Boston and suspects that her father has an ulterior motive for bringing her back. She's right: Now that her only sibling has died, Conrad Springer plans to marry her off to Joshua. Augusta is forced to decide between her long-dormant feelings for Joshua and the life of her own she's building in Boston.
7) Tease us with a blurb/short except
“I won’t be forced to marry,” Augusta Springer said, her voice steady. “Not by you or anyone else.” A flush crept over her father’s face, rising slowly from his thick neck. Conrad Springer did not like to be refused. He hadn’t become one of the wealthiest cattle barons in western Montana by being weak. Augusta, now his only living relative, knew that better than anyone.
“You will marry.” Conrad spoke more quietly than she would have expected, given his surly expression. “You’re long past the age. Twenty-two years old.”
Her father’s mistake obviously didn’t concern him. “In that case, your wedding is longer overdue than I thought.” Conrad waved his cigar dismissively.
1) What is your favourite attribute of the hero and heroine?
Augusta is spunky--I like that. She needs a strong man to meet her halfway, and Joshua Bradley is more than her match! He's got the kind of quiet confidence in himself I really find attractive.
2) What’s next? My first full-length novel, Forget-Me-Not, comes out Feb. 18th. A complete change of pace, it's a contemporary romantic suspense featuring a hero with a head injury and a heroine on the run from a disastrous career.
3) Tell me where you write? On my laptop, in my home office. I can hear my son playing down the hall in his bedroom, or, in the summer time, the rumbling bullfrogs and the noisy geese on the pond outside.
4) Where would you like your career to be in 5 years? I'll be delighted if I can just keep writing and selling more stories.
12) Where can we find you?
I blog at http://lindamorriswriter.blogspot.com/. You can also find me on Facebook under Linda Morris, Writer.
Great interview, Linda! We sound very similiar in both our working practices and our goals - I aimed to be published by the time I was 40 and managed that, now my new goal is to be agented by 40. Wish me luck!
Now it's you guys turn! Linda is waiting...