When did you first realize you wanted to be a writer?
I can remember it distinctly. I was reading a novel next to my husband about a year after we’d been married. I closed it, got my computer, and sat back down beside him. I remember saying, “I think I’m going to try and write a book.” The funny thing was, he didn’t even flinch. He smiled and said, “Okay.”
Tell us about your first novel Coming Home for Christmas. How did you come up with that storyline?
With that particular one, it just occurred to me as I was writing it. I didn’t really have the plot hashed out until the next sequence came to mind. (Now, I go back and forth with the publisher until we have a plot that’s perfect before I write.
What kind of research did you do for Coming Home for Christmas?
Coming Home for Christmas was set in an area very close to my home, so I didn’t have to do very much research. I may have researched designer watches and clothing for the Marleys, and I did have a look at some of the new apartments in Richmond for Alex’s apartment.
How’s the writing for your second novel going?
I’ve finished draft one! Hurrah! No news as to what will come of it yet.
What’s a typical working day like for you? Do you set a daily writing goal?
I work full time as an elementary school teacher, and I have two little boys, so writing comes at night from about 8:00 pm until 10:00 pm. I set a weekly writing goal of 5,000 words. I usually hit it.
What do you do and enjoy when you’re not writing?
I love to read. That’s my most favorite thing. I also love being with family and friends.
Do you think that the cover plays an important part in the buying process?
Well, it does for me. I’ve actually turned my nose up at a book because of the cover. Not sure about everyone else. I was thrilled with the cover choice for Coming Home for Christmas.
Which actor/actress would you like to see playing the lead characters from Coming Home for Christmas?
You know, they change a bit as I see more people. I just started watching Downton Abbey, and Maggie Smith (Violet) would be such a great Pippa! I’d always seen Robert as a darker Paul Walker, and Kip, Alex Pettyfer, Allie would be Emilie de Raven, and Sloane (a younger) Kristin Scott Thomas.
What are your thoughts on writing a book series?
I would love to write a series, and I enjoy reading them. Maybe one day I’ll come up with a story line that will span more than one book.
Which famous person, living or dead would you like to meet and why?
This is a tough one! I’d like to meet a lot of people for different reasons. If I had to pick one, I’d say Oprah Winfrey because she’s such a genuinely nice person.