Interview with Annalise Russell…

Annalise Russell 

Please give a warm welcome to Annalise Russell.
Annalise’s first Aphrodisia release, “IN HIS BED”, will be released in the upcoming anthology, THE PLEASURE OF HIS BED, this September! 

Please tell us about your upcoming release.
IN HIS BED is my first story with Kensington. The story takes place during Viking times, and involves an Irish lass. It is part of a three novella collection (THE PLEASURE OF HIS BED) due out in September 2008. The other two stories in the collection are written by Donna Grant and Melissa MacNeal. So there will be three terrific and very different stories to entice and enjoy! 

What inspired the story?
I always find this question to be tough to answer. Writing historicals, it is difficult for me to take inspiration from everyday life. I’ve yet to meet many Vikings in the produce section of the grocery store. So for me, it’s not so much inspiration as characters with stories that must be told. 

What is your favorite part of being a writer?  Least favorite?
My favorite part of being a writer, hmm…that’s a good question. I guess I’ve never thought of writing in those terms. As far as the process itself, I’d have to say all of it. I love the first draft, finding out about my characters and their lives, their struggles and accomplishments. Edits are where I smooth out the wrinkles. And sending off that finished manuscript – that always feels great!  

For the least favorite part of being a writer, I’d have to say it’s when my characters go off in a totally different direction than I envisioned, and I have to go back and do the clean up work. But over the years I’ve learned that for me, going along with my characters always produces a better story in the end. After all, my life is never as exciting as theirs 🙂 

Who has inspired you as a writer?
In contemporary times, Diana Gabaldon, absolutely. She broke all the taboo rules with her Outlander series and as a reader, I just didn’t care. I fell so wonderfully in love with her characters that any wrong they did by happenstance or intention didn’t matter.Now writers in history, there’s quite a list, ‘Madame Bovary’ by Gustave Flaubert, ‘Dragonwyck’ by Anya Seton, ‘Cass Timberlane’ by Sinclair Lewis, R. W. Emerson, Geoffrey Chaucer, Nathaniel Hawthorne, Edgar Allen Poe, Mark Twain, the list goes on and on. Old books are my passion, and I don’t just collect them for a shelf, I read them.   

How long have you been a writer?
All my life. I’ve always been a writer, everything from poetry to short prose and articles all through high school, college, and adult life. About six years ago I decided to pursue writing fiction as a career. 

What would you like to tell aspiring writers?
Write. Write. Write. And don’t ever let anyone tell you that your dreams will never come true. This is not an easy business, you need a thick skin, but it is a business where success can be had if you want it bad enough to work for it. 

Describe yourself in 3 words.
Shy. Perceptive. Daring.     

If you had a time capsule to be opened 50 years in the future, what would you put in it?
A clock that would turn back time! 

What is next for you?
I am currently finishing my second novella for Kensington, which I hope my editor will love. January will be a time for researching and writing a proposal on a three book set of stories. Each single title story will stand alone, but they are all connected. I also have another single title historical to edit. So lots to keep me busy. 

Is there anything you’d like to ask readers?
What do you like most about the stories you read and keep on your shelf? What is it that draws you back to re-read a particular story over and over? 

You can learn more about Annalise by visiting her blog at 

Thank you Annalise for the interview! 
I truly look forward to your release and wish you much success!

Readers, how about taking the time to answer Annalise’s questions…


10 Responses to Interview with Annalise Russell…

  1. fedora says:

    Hi, Annalise! Thanks for taking the time to give us some info about yourself and your writing! Congrats on your new release–it sounds terrific!

    Hmm… I like the characters in the keepers I have–I like who they seem to be and how they develop as the story unfolds and I like how they get to the HEA. For instance, one of my favorites is Susan Elizabeth Phillips’s Ain’t She Sweet–I really like Sugar Beth’s character, and her facing the people whose lives she’s so carelessly hurt and how she’s able to build new relationships with them. And I enjoy SEP’s entertaining dialogue. Generally the keepers are humorous–I love books that can also make me laugh 🙂 And they need to have believable, heartfelt emotions–I want to enjoy that whole breathless falling-in-love/lust thing when I reread… hope that isn’t too much to ask 😉

    Thanks for writing!

  2. Eva S says:

    Hi Annalise,
    thanks for the interview, I’m looking forward to read your book.

    I’m hopelessly romantic and all my keepers have a good, emotional romance, no mather if it’s a historical, paranormal or contemporary book. I love the characters struggle to the happy ending. One author I have re-read many times is Judith McNaught, she knows how to do it… And most of my keepers make me cry, all over again…Silly me.

  3. Jane says:

    Hi Annalise,
    Like everyone else, I’m a sucker for happily ever afters. There’s no one criteria that keeps me from rereading a book.

  4. brownone says:

    Hi Annalise,

    I love a good viking story!

    Big Gabaldon fan here too! She’s automatically on my keepers list along with anything by Lisa Kleypas. For me it’s usually well-developed characters. I don’t know how many times I’ve read “Outlander” and “Devil in Winter”, but I love the characters. I also find humor to be important also. I just can’t enjoy a book if it is all seriousness. Usually when I read something by Lisa Kleypas, I find myslef laughing out loud at times.

  5. JSL says:

    Hi Annalise,

    What I like most about the books I buy/keep are the character depth and growth. I like it when someone changes and develops, realizing what was good/bad about them before. I also need a “happily ever after” happy ending. If I don’t have my happy ending, it’s going to take a lot for me to go back to that author. If ever. And strong women. I don’t like the wilting flower doormat “I’ll do anything if you love me” heroine, though I’m loathe to use that word.
    I love the story lines and emotions – books by Susan Elizabeth Phillips, Lisa Kleypas, and Shannon McKenna. Of course, the hot scenes are always a plus ;-).

  6. Annalise Russell says:

    Thanks so much for all the comments and congratulations! And a big, huge hug of a thank you to Jennifer for hosting me 🙂 I really enjoyed her questions and hospitality.
    I hope you all will enjoy reading my stories as much as I enjoy writing them. And if you’d like to keep up with my world (life in general, release dates and new projects), feel free to pop over to my blog and see what’s up.
    Thanks again for a wonderful time, Jennifer!

  7. Mary Vine says:

    I am looking forward to reading your Viking stories-sounds good!
    I also like Susan Elizabeth Phillips. She has a lot of bantering and humor between the hero and heroine – and when a book has that I can’t put it down.

  8. Sue A. says:

    Annalise congrats on your first release with Aphrodisia!

    I put books on my keeper shelf because of the deep emotional connection I make with the characters which I don’t want to forget or loose.

  9. acdaisy77 says:

    Congrats on your new release! What I love the stories is that characters and a happy ending. 🙂

  10. amysmith98 says:

    Love Viking books! This one sounds great! Congrats on your first Aphrodisia book! I have added it to my wishlist!

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