1) Who is your favourite author and why?
Just one??? Probably all-time favorite writer would be Stephen King, who is a master at story-telling, creating and maintaining tension and suspense, and coming up with unique and compelling plots. I’ve been drawn to paranormal stories since I was a kid, so King has been a staple of my reading list for as long as I can remember.
2) When did you first consider yourself a writer?
I’m a historian by training, and history is a profession built on written stories. So I’ve always considered myself a writer in a broader sense. I returned to fiction writing for the first time since my teenage years about three years ago, and I think I truly consider myself a fiction writer the first time I wrote “The End” on the last page of a manuscript. Granted, it was a draft - one that in the end needed a major overhaul (LOL), but completing a novel is something not many people achieve, so I was really proud of it, and it made the idea of being a writer feel real.
3) Describe your writing space?
I staked a claim to a writing desk in our home office and do a lot of writing there. It’s a small oasis in the middle of domestic chaos! My secondary writing space is the first booth on the left at my local Panera Bread! My best friend and fellow author meet there a lot to write, too.
4) What are you reading now?
I just finished Mockingjay a few days ago. I’m a college professor and in the midst of end-of-the-semester grading hell, so I haven’t had the chance to start anything new yet!
5) How many books have your written? Which is your favourite?
I have completed a total of two nonfiction and eight fiction manuscripts. Four of the eight – all romances – are contracted and releasing in 2011. Again with the making me picking one favorite!!! Er, jeez, I like them for different reasons… But, if I have to choose, I’d say Hearts in Darkness. The story and characters took me totally by surprise and I am completely in love with hero Caden Grayson.
6) What comes first, plot or characters?
Plot bunnies unite! LOL Usually, a kernel of a plot. An answer to a what-if question. From there, scenes will start to come to life, often disconnected, but bringing to life characters with them. Once the title pops into mind, the rest usually clicks into place fairly quickly. Occasionally, though, a great title will come to mind and spur a whole plot almost instantly.
7) Do you ever suffer from writer’s block?
Only if I try to force something that’s not working. I truly feel that the writing flows through me, from somewhere “out there,” rather than I “create” it. Probably an odd-sounding distinction, but on this issue it really encapsulates how it feels. I do sometimes suffer from writing exhaustion, which happens when my brain needs time to recuperate from a period of major writing productivity or when I’m switching between projects and need to retool for the next story.
8) What do you like to do when you’re not writing?
I have a husband and two young daughters, so most of my non-writing time is family time. I like to read (naturally!), go to the movies, and eat out! I’m more interesting inside my head than in real life! LOL
9) Tell us about your latest book?
I have two books releasing within a month of one another, both published by The Wild Rose Press – they show my propensity for genre-hopping! *grins*
HEARTS IN DARKNESS is a contemporary romance about two strangers who find acceptance and dare to find love while trapped for four hours in a pitch-black elevator (available now).
FOREVER FREED is a paranormal romance about a reclusive vampire who falls in love with a woman he planned to kill and her young daughter, who must overcome his century-old grief, bloodlust, the consequences of a lie by omission, and a jealous vampire rival who threatens to ruin everything he holds dear (releases May 20).
10) What’s next for you?
I’ve just made two new sales! I sold a four-book fantasy romance series to Entangled Publishing based on the Greek Anemoi —directional wind gods also associated with the seasons. The first, NORTH OF NEED, will release in November 2011. Writing the three other books in the series will be my first priority for the next number of months. Just last week, I also sold my first erotic romance, a contemporary ménage a quatres (m/m/m/f) called JUST GOTTA SAY to Decadent Publishing. Currently, I’m completing final revisions on a novel-length women’s fiction called THE FANTASY LIFE OF A MIDDLE-AGED WIFE. See, genre hopper here!
Thanks again for having me over to your place, Rachel!
Find Laura on the interwebz:
Phew!! You are one busy lady! Huge congrats on your releases and amazing four book contract deal, you must be thrilled. Our personal lives are very similiar too. I have a hubby and two young daughters so the feeling of spending time in non-reality is quite a nice distraction, lol! ; )
Laura is waiting to hear from you!