The interview continues…
Who are some of your writing influences?
This is a cruel question, Jennifer. Shame on you. (Me: Sorry…) I am a compulsive reader.
We met through the Petticoats and Pistols blog and I know Pam Crooks and Cheryl St. John from that blog and love their work. (Me: Wonderful blog and authors)
I love Julie Garwood. She’s probably my favorite. (Me: She is who introduced me to the world of romance!!)
Susan Elizabeth Phillips is my dialogue queen.
Linda Howard for pure alpha males and suspense
Jennifer Crusie for writing so skillfully that it’s a mistake to skip a single word.
Elizabeth Lowell, Susan Brockmann, Clive Cussler, Jonathan Kellerman, Faye Kellerman, Janet Evanovich, Sue Grafton. I’m a huge romantic suspense fan. If they’re falling in love and sassing each other while they’re running for their lives, then I’m happy.
I just read a fantastic book, Single Sushi, by a new author, Camy Tang. It was a completely different style and genre but it reminded me of Jennifer Crusie just in the way I didn’t want to miss a word.
Rene Gutteridge’s Boo series. I’ll read anything she writes. So funny.
Angela Hunt writes the most creative stories imaginable.
Francine Rivers ‘Mark of the Lion’ trilogy helped me to see how powerful words could really be. That is a brilliant series of books about a little Jewish girl captured and enslaved by the Romans in about 50 a.d. Just before she was taken into slavery she became a Christian. Well, the Romans enslaved Jews, but they feed Christians to the lions. Very intense and beautifully set in that time.
Debby Giusti writes romantic suspense. I’ve read her first two books and can’t wait for the next one.
Tracie Peterson, Cathy Marie Hake, DeeAnne Gist and Lori Copeland. All historical authors who made the waters safer for me. I especially love Lori Copeland’s humor.
I’m leaving people out and I hate that.
(Me: That is a wonderful list of authors…many of them are favorites of mine as well!!!)
What would you like to tell aspiring writers?
That sounds so trite but it’s not.
Write and keep writing. Yes, study, yes, take classes, yes, get connected and submit work to agents and editors and contests but don’t write one book then settle in to wait for it to be published. Keep writing, start that next book. No matter what you learn you have to apply it.
So write. Like I said, I had twenty books on my computer when I got my first one published. You know what? I just signed a contract for my nineteenth book since my first contract in 2005. They’ll be releasing through 2011. I was really glad I had those books on hand or could never had made this commitment. As it is I’ll have written eleven of them in that time.
What is next for you?
My next book, Calico Canyon, a sequel to Petticoat Ranch is due for release next August.
Prissy Miss Calhoun, the school marm from Petticoat Ranch and Daniel Reeves with his five unruly boys star in Calico Canyon.
She kicks his boys out of school.
He gets her fired.
A completely innocent compromising situation sees them married the next day. Five little boys are horrified. Daniel is a trapped rat and Grace is stuck in her worst nightmare.
She’d walk out on them all…with their fond farewell, except her past caught up with her in town, which is why she hid in Daniel’s wagon and ended up spending the night with him and the boys. (Me: Oooh…I can’t wait for this one…August is soooo far away…..)
Where can readers find you online?
I am all over online…too much all over, probably.
My website. http://www.maryconnealy.com/
My blog: http://www.mconnealy.blogspot.com/
The Petticoats and Pistols blog where I hang around all the time: http://www.petticoatsandpistols.com/ (Me: In fact, Mary was recently made a permanent blogger on the blog!)
The Seekerville blog about writing contests: http://seekerville.blogspot.com/
Plus I’m on Myspace, Facebook and too many other places. But I love the internet and the way it connects me to writers and readers.
Any questions for readers?
In Petticoat Ranch I tried to have Clay be a complete innocent with women, but I didn’t want him to be unkind or sexist. And I didn’t want to be male bashing.
I just wanted him to be flailing around doing all the wrong things for sincerely meant good reasons.
Clay the Clueless.
Do you think a woman can do this? Can we ever really understand the mystery that is MAN?
I’d love to hear about your blog readers experiences with misunderstanding the opposite sex.
So how about it readers, any misunderstandings with the opposite sex? In Petticoats and Pistols, there are a few that lead to some humorous moments. And how about Mary’s other questions? Can women ever understand the mystery that is MAN?
Remember, to leave a comment for your chance to win one of Mary’s books…details on Monday’s post!
I want to thank Mary for being a guest on the blog! I have enjoyed getting to know more about her and sharing that information with my blog readers. You are welcome here anytime, Mary!
Readers, remember, you can learn more about Mary and her books by visiting her website: http://www.maryconnealy.com