Please give a warm welcome to author Loucinda McGary!
Loucinda’s debut release, The Wild Sight, is being released later this year.
I first “met” Loucinda through the Romance Bandits blog and I am thrilled to have her here today!
Please tell us about your books.
The Wild Sight: An Irish tale of deadly deeds and forbidden love is my debut novel. It is an October 2008 release from Sourcebooks Casablanca and is a contemporary romantic suspense with paranormal elements. The hero of my story, Donovan O’Shea was born with a psychic ability he couldn’t control, so he fled to America, where his “gift” never manifested itself. As the story opens, his father’s illness has forced him to return to rural Northern Ireland and the family homestead on the edge of the fens of Lough Neagh. When Donovan was a child, his mother disappeared into those fens and was never seen again. Now the same fens are offering up secrets, both ancient and modern, and restoring a terrible legacy, which just might drive Donovan mad. And if that isn’t trouble enough, a beautiful woman walks into his life, claiming to be his half-sister.
What inspired the story?
The Wild Sight was actually my third contemporary romantic suspense. The previous two (both still unsold at this point in time) were set in Italy, one in Venice and the other in and around the Isle of Capri. Since I hadn’t had much luck selling an Italian setting, I decided that this time out I would set the book in Ireland. Both my DH and I are Irish, and he has relatives in Northern Ireland (I probably do too, just don’t know exactly where). I loved visiting there.
Anyway, I went to my local library and checked out all the books on Celtic Ireland they would allow me to take. I had a bit of everything from history to jewelry to folktales. After about three weeks of immersing myself in all things Irish, including my photos and travel journals from previous visits, the germ of an idea began to grow in my imagination.
I love the notion of the Irish “second sight,” though women seem to be the ones with this ability in most stories. I started thinking what if a man had it? And that’s when my hero, Donovan O’Shea was born.
What is your favorite part of being a writer?
Having all these wonderful stories and characters rolling around in my imagination, waiting to be told. Plus, now I’ll be able to share them with a lot of readers. I’m really looking forward to that.
A very close second is “meeting” and interacting with all the wonderful readers and other writers online and in person! There’s such a supportive community of romance readers and writers, and I feel so fortunate to be a part of it.
Rejections. No matter what, they hurt.
Also, the hurry-up-and-wait aspects of publishing. Everything seems to take forever! But then, patience has never been one of my virtues.
Can you share with us “The Call” story?
Jennifer, as you and other readers of the Romance Bandits blog know, I was a finalist in the 2006 Golden Heart contest. Of course, I attended the Romance Writers of America conference and awards ceremony in Atlanta that year. One morning, I got on the elevator with a woman who introduced herself as an editor. She noticed my Golden Heart Finalist ribbon on my name badge, said she would really like to read my contest entry, and gave me her business card. When I returned home, I sent her that manuscript, which she ultimately rejected. However, she expressed an interest in my current work-in-progress and I sent her the first four chapters of what would become The Wild Sight.
A couple of months later, she called my house (!) and asked me to send the entire manuscript. After I stopped hyperventilating and emailed her the whole story, I convinced myself that nobody ever sells their manuscript to the very first editor who reads it. I am happy to say I was WRONG WRONG WRONG! On the morning of September 14, 2007, the editor called to say she loved my Irish book and wanted to buy it!
So truth really is stranger than fiction. I really did meet my editor in an elevator during a writing conference. She was the very first editor to see my book, and she bought it.
What would you like to tell aspiring writers?
The only way you will ever truly fail is if you stop writing and submitting.
Who has inspired you as a writer?
My mother loved to read the great Gothic romance writers Victoria Holt, Phyllis A. Whitney, and Mary Stewart. As a teen, when I ran out of things to read, I picked up some of Mom’s books and very soon I was hooked on those tales of a young woman in danger and a mysterious, handsome man who might or might not come to her rescue.
I also read a lot of fantasy novels in my teens and early twenties and especially loved the Shannara series by Terry Brooks. Romance wise, I read Rosemary Rogers and Kathleen Woodiwiss early on didn’t really read any contemporary authors. I was pretty burned out on romance until I accidentally picked up Outlander by Diana Gabaldon. That book knocked my socks off and inspired me to start writing again!
Nowadays, some of the best writers in the business are writing in the romance genre. In fact, there are so many great writers on the shelves (some of them I even know personally!) I just wish I had more time to read them all.
Describe yourself in 3 words.
Only three? Whew, that’s a tuffy for a loquacious lass like me!
1. Honest (to a fault)
2. Creative (I hope!)
3. Impatient (see above answer to least favorite)
If you had a time capsule to be opened 50 years in the future, what would you put in it?
Photos, clothing, and things people use everyday. Whenever I go to museums, these are the things that interest me most. I love to see how people dressed and how they lived.
I’d also throw in some newspaper or magazine advertisements so people could get a laugh about the items being sold and the prices. I think the prices of 50 years ago are very eye opening, like a new car for less than $2,000 or an apartment for rent for less than $100 per month. I’m sure 50 years from now, people will have the same reaction about our current prices.
Is there anything you’d like to ask readers?
I love a man with a brogue, how ‘bout you? It’s no surprise that I create my heroes with exotic (to me) accents because I find them irresistible.
What qualities or characteristics do you find most appealing in a hero?
I’ll have Jennifer give a prize for the answer of her choice – every romance reader and writer’s essential ingredient, CHOCOLATE!
Thank you Loucinda…and readers, you know what to do…leave a comment answering her question and be entered to win some chocolate!
I’ll announce the winner this Thursday!
And if you want to learn more about Loucinda you can find her here: