Welcome to Read-A-Romance Month!
While I read romance all year long, August is the month we celebrate romantic fiction! Come back every day to read the fun author Q&As – calendar here – and each weekday in August, we’ll also have an author guest hosting the Romance of Reading FB page. Today Jeannie Moon is doing both the Q&A and the author takeover.
This year is significantly smaller in scale. If you’re interested, you can read about some of the reasons why here. It’s been a crazy year, and a complicated few months.
Happy August. Isn’t life better with #ATouchofRomance?! xo
2018 RARM Questions:
Why do you write books?
Because everyone deserves to put his or her feet up and get lost in another world. I know sometimes romance gets criticized because it’s “escapism” but honestly, that’s what I’ve always liked best about it. When my world gets hard, reading romance is like pushing the easy button. Between the covers I find empathetic heroines, heroes that teach me what I should expect in a man, and conflict that makes me cry, laugh and sigh. I can never apologize for writing something that delivers something like that.
What do you consider to be the most courageous thing you’ve ever done?
Quit my job to write full time. I worked part time as an Adult Education instructor and my boss asked me to come on board full time. I had just finaled in the Golden Heart and was in the process of working with an editor on my first contemporary romance. I knew if I went full-time as a teacher (along with balancing being a mom and part-time bookkeeper for my husband’s business), I would have very little time to build a writing career. So I told her no thanks and that I would be stepping away from teaching. It was a big moment for this girl who ALWAYS does the safe thing.
Tell us why you write romances or include strong romantic elements in your books?
I probably covered that in the first question, but since I’ve recently started writing books that are more women’s fiction in nature, I will say that including a romantic journey for a woman may not be essential, but it feels complete. I grew up with those Enjoli commercials and they spoke to me. Women can and should have it all…and that includes a little romance in their lives.
Tell us about a romantic moment in your life. (Either romantic love, or romantic sensibility.
One of the most romantic moments in my life is when I get home from something exhausting and my husband has drawn me a bath and fixed me a cocktail. Oh, there’s been lots of great romantic moments, but that simple gesture says “I see you, I love you, and I want to make you feel better.” So, yeah, a bath and cocktail with soft music is my favorite. Oh, and if he joins me and washes my hair…sigh. That’s the best.
If you could tell your younger self anything (either as a writer or as a woman) what would it be?
Wear that damn bikini. Wear that short dress that shows your thighs. You aren’t that fat, sister. Oh, and don’t be afraid to step outside yourself and love people for how they are instead of what you expect them to be.
I could keep going. Younger selves are rarely more intelligent that what we are now, right?
Tell us something you uncovered in research that fascinated you.
How do you handle the voices in your head competing for their story to be written? (Thanks Eileen!)
I remind them that their stories can’t be told until I finish the one I’m currently telling. I’m fair to all my voices. They have to wait in line. No cutting!
If you could live for a month somewhere (either in the present or past) where (and when, if applicable) would it be? Why?
I would love to live in my friend’s guest cottage in France. She lives in a small village with a stream and gorgeous garden. A bread truck comes each day, and the baker saves small pieces for the little dogs that come to greet it. There are goats with bells and neighbors who bring jams. It’s a house built in the 1600s so there is a great sense of place. I’m DYING to go. So I’m going to need all of you to buy my books. And a few for your friends. And the mailman. And the lady who waves at you sometimes. Basically, everyone you know. And I will promise to share pictures of me sitting beside the stream happily writing more books. LOL. Hey, I can ask, right?
What is (one of) the most remarkable/inspiring things that has happened to you as a reader or writer?
The coolest thing is having your own role model authors reading YOUR book. That happened with Kristan Higgins, Robyn Carr and Mariah Stewart. When they get in touch with you to tell you that they liked your book, it’s a bit surreal. And VERY cool. I feel blessed to have the support I have and I never take it for granted. I hope I can pay back the kindness that other authors have given me.
Ashley Elston who writes YA. Her stories may include a light romance but they are at the heart twisty little thrillers. I loved This is Our Story and she has a new one coming out this November called The Lying Woods. She’s terrific and your kids will love her books, too.
Michelle Michaels, a new indie author. Her debut book Eluded was a raw story about a woman partnering with a sexy gangster to find out what happened to her sister. Set in a seedy world of organized crime, it was just different enough to spark my interest.
Falguni Kothari – I read her latest book The Last Love Story and reveled in her evocative imagery and marveled she could write a love story that involved a menage. Okay, it’s not a book about sex. It’s a book about three friends who love each other and the terrible tragedy of cancer. I love the frank way Kothari addresses illness, and the strong ties she weaves for her characters. It’s a tender story of love and friendship.
Liz Talley is the author of twenty-five heartwarming stories of love and laughter. A finalist in both the Golden Heart and Rita Awards, she’s garnered number one spots on Amazon Romance lists and was honored with RT Reviews Best Superromance 2014.
Robyn Carr says “laughter and tears spring from the pages” and Kristan Higgins says her stories are “written in a warm, intelligent voice.”
Liz makes her home in North Louisiana with her high school sweetheart, two teen boys, and three dogs. When not writing romance, she likes to read, volunteer and watch Netflix.
You can reach her at www.liztalleybooks.com
Buy Liz’s books:
*Please note that the Amazon button, most cover images and many text links connect to a Read-A-Romance Month affiliate portal. Thanks so much for your help & support!
Authors on The Romance of Reading page:
1 – Jeannie Moon 2 – Lenora Bell
3 – Nancy Herkness 6 – Kimberli A. Bindschatel
7 – Cathy Maxwell 8 – Amelia Grey
9 – Liz Talley 10 – Dylann Crush
13 – Marilyn Brant 14 – Sharla Lovelace
15 – Sally MacKenzie 16 – TBA
17 – TBA 20 – Christine Nolfi
21 – Susie Orman Schnall 22 – Caroline Linden
(more to come…)