With more than 90 novels (one of which was turned into a movie) and multiple RITA nominations, Maureen Child is a mega-talented author on her way to the top. If you ask her, sheâ€™ll tell you she owes it to stubborn determination. If you ask me, she owes it to her quick wit too.
A â€“ Standing nowâ€”oops, you canâ€™t see me. Ah, pseudonyms are a lovely little thing about writing. You can recreate yourself in dozens of ways. Just take a new name and write something completely different!
Q â€“ What led you to take on so many different pseudonums?
A â€“ I write fast. Always have. When I started, I was writing six or seven western historicals a year. My publisher at the time was Berkley, and the decision was made to take a pseudonym so I could get more releases out a year. Two under each name worked well for me. Then I started writing different things. Historical paranormals under the name Kathleen Kane, western adventures under Ann Carberry and one terrific Angel book under Sarah Hart.
Q â€“ Do you write under any pseudonyms now? If so, what? Why?
A â€“ Not at the moment. Silhouette Desire feeds my fast writing habit and theyâ€™re willing to bring out lots of books every year under my own name, so itâ€™s easier to be me these days and simply answer to one name.
Q â€“ You write category as well as single title. What do you love about writing categories that you donâ€™t get from writing single titles?
A â€“ I love category. Theyâ€™re fast paced and well-told stories condensed into half the page count of a single title. Theyâ€™re fascinating to write and always a challenge, which I love.
Q â€“ What do you love about writing single titles that you donâ€™t get from writing categories?
A â€“ There, I can do more POVâ€™s, go deeper into emotional conflict, take the plot further. Thereâ€™s more room to explore. So luckily, I get the best of both worlds.
Q â€“ Do you ever run out of ideas? If so, how did you get past that?
A â€“ I read. All the time. In all different genres. Iâ€™ve always got a book going. I watch movies, TV shows, listen to musicâ€”country music especially, thereâ€™s a story in every song, I swear. Go to the mall. People watch. Wonder about the guy in the plaid shorts with the dark socks. Is he undercover? Is he lost? Why?
Q – Which is the favorite of your books? Why?
A â€“ I still love This Time For Keeps. The heroine was GREAT and the whole situation was fabulous. Contemporary woman dies and instead of being reincarnated forward, sheâ€™s sent back. To the old west. Where she has to face the man whoâ€™s been the cause of her death in her last eight lifetimes. I had a blast writing that book.
Q â€“ Whatâ€™s the best advice you ever received?
A â€“ My father always told me, â€œYou can be anything you want to be if youâ€™re willing to work for it.â€
Q â€“ What do you know now that you wish youâ€™d known then, as a first-time author and/or unpublished writer?
A â€“ When I was brand new and knew nothing, my first agent called to tell me that an editor was interested in my book but she wanted me to add 10,000 words. This is something I did not understand and said, WHY? The storyâ€™s complete as is. And this agent said, Okey-dokey, Iâ€™ll tell her. So, if I knew then what I know now, Iâ€™d have sold my first book two years earlier than I did.
Q â€“ What three words describe you?
A â€“ Another hard one. How do you judge something like that about yourself? I just canâ€™t do it. (laughing) Okay, I cheated. I asked some friends your question and they said talented, generous and funny. But I prefer cranky, neurotic and clueless!
Q â€“ What is the one thing youâ€™ve never been asked, but you wish someone would?
A â€“ â€œWould you mind moving your limo? Itâ€™s in my way.â€
And don’t miss her latest, Eternally, out now. When asked which is Maureenâ€™s favorite of her heroes, she said:
â€œKieran MacIntyre, the hero of Eternally, my first Silhouette Nocturne, out this November. Heâ€™s old world (died while serving Mary, Queen of Scots) and though his heroine makes him insane, heâ€™s stalwart and honest and honorable and willing to risk all for his sense of honor. Loved him.â€ Find out more about Maureen Child at www.maureenchild.com
Dana Diamond is the OCC/RWA Secretary, a columnist for OCC’s award-winning newsletter Orange Blossom, a contributor to A Slice Of Orange, and hard at work on her next book.For past interviews visit the Orange Blossom section of OCC’s award-winning website.
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