The Mistress of Pennington's Tour

Monday, 7 March 2011

Welcome busy mother and writer, Heather Hiestand!

Glad to have a fellow Wild Rose Press author here for the next couple of days - How are you, Heather? I see you face the same problem as I did a few years ago...toddlers and writing. Hard work! My kids are both school age now so the managing is a bit better - the problems are still there, but different.

Shall we get started?

1) Who is your favourite author and why?

Connie Willis, a science fiction/time travel author, is my favorite. I like the way she evokes emotion. Heartbreak sneaks up on you because she plots so skillfully and you really care about her characters.

2) When did you first consider yourself a writer?

I wrote periodically from the age of seven on, but I probably only felt professional about it when I was able to work part time and write half time about five years ago.

3) Describe your writing space?

My office is currently storage space with a dead computer thanks to having an active toddler, so I write in an easy chair in the living room while he naps. Otherwise, he is wrestling me for the computer!

4) What are you reading now?

Too many things at once! Tom Brown’s Schooldays is for research, then I have a book I’m reviewing, women’s fiction right now. City of Bones and Evermore on audio, and an old paranormal romance from the 90s by Christina Skye on my ebook reader.

5) How many books have your written? Which is your favourite?

I have seven novels published, plus a bunch of shorter stuff. For novels, Gunshot Grange was my favorite until I finished my latest, unpublished novel, for which I’m seeking representation right now.

6) What comes first, plot or characters?

I’m heavily into plotting. It’s my favorite part of writing. That’s not to say characters don’t come first, but it’s the plotting that fleshes them out, then I learn a lot more in the writing. I’m amazed how I can think I’ve thoroughly plotted out a book, then find major revelations in the writing phase.

7) Do you ever suffer from writer’s block?

I suffer from toddler-induced sleep deprivation! It works out to be the same thing. I don’t do night wakeups well, and I have to do a lot of tot-comforting in the wee hours.

8) What do you like to do when you’re not writing?

I’ve always been a bookworm. I also like to cook and take walks. I used to have other hobbies, but all has vanished since having a child.

9) Tell us about your latest book?

“Victoriana Adventure” is a novella, and standalone sequel to my short story “Victoriana” in the Holiday in the Heart anthology from a few years ago. I’ll have a release date soon at The Wild Rose Press – it’s gone to Scheduling for a date.


Marooned in backward Victoriana by a magical Christmas cracker, Ollie Brown wants to get home to modern Tacoma. The enticing girl who shelters him tempts him to stay in this alternate reality, but what does a nineteenth century princess need with a twenty-first century skateboarding chemist in a world where science is banned?

Princess Lenchen thrills at the chance to assist the handsome stranger who speaks of oddities like candy bars and “grinding.” Ollie offers a breath of freedom, but Lenchen knows he feels trapped and out of place. She reluctantly tries to help him find a way back to his world, though she longs to know more about him—and to escape her cloistered life in the widowed Queen Victoria’s court.

Every girl wants her own Cinderella story, even if she's already a princess—but if Ollie stays with her, will he be allowed to be himself?

Last month, I had a novella release, “The Bachelor” in the Cupid Gone Wild anthology from eTreasures Publishing. It’s a collection of contemporary romance tales featuring Cupid wanna-bes who take a hand in making difficult romances blossom. The Kindle link is:

10) What’s next for you?

I’m co-writing a steampunk series with a writer friend right now. We’ve had some agent interest, so I’m hoping we can find a home for the series somewhere. I love the rich world of semi-historical London we’ve created and our characters.

Keep in touch with me at From there you can find my blog, newsletter, Twitter, Facebook etc.

Ok, first things first - i LOVE your book cover from the Wild Rose Press! It's absolutely beautiful, just how a Victorian romance novel should look. Who was the artist? Tina Lynn designed my first historical cover.



  1. I agree, that cover is GORGEOUS!! Perfect for a Victorian romance indeed.... Meg Mims

  2. Thanks for hosting me, Rachel and thanks to both you and Meg for the kind comments on my cover. The artist was Tamra Westberry.

    Heather Hiestand

  3. Good luck on the steampunk. It's a really up and coming area. And congrats on the novella!
    Joy Held
    Writer Wellness, A Writer's Path to Health and Creativity