Q & A with Cara Connelly!
1. Tell us about your newest release.
The Wedding Favor – the first novel in my Save the Date series with Avon – went on sale December 31st. It’s a funny, sexy, emotional, enemies-to-lovers story with lots of banter and plenty of heat. Here’s a mini-blurb: “When courtroom adversaries Ty and Victoria discover they’re heading to the same wedding, they agree to play nice, even flirt. But they can’t help riling each other, and even worse, they can’t keep their hands off each other either. When the wedding’s over, will their fake flirtation become a real romance?”
2. What makes your story special to you?
The Wedding Favor is the first novel I sold, so it will always hold a special place in my heart for that reason. It’s also set in three locations I adore – New York, Texas and France. And I love, love, love the hero – Tyrell Brown – a sexy rancher with a heartbreaking past and a killer drawl.
(Ty's just-as-sexy brother Cody stars in The Wedding Date, the novella that started off the Save the Date series last November.)
3. When did you first realize you wanted to be a writer?
About ten years ago, without any forethought or planning, I just sat down at my computer one day and started writing a first person historical story that wouldn’t let go of me until I finished it…two years and 300,000+ words later. After that, the writing bug had me in its jaws. I started to seriously think about publication, joined RWA, took craft workshops, and kept writing. The Wedding Favor is the book where it all came together…craft, passion and storytelling.
4. What is a typical writing day like?
A typical writing day starts with coffee, and lots of it! Then I pick a spot to settle in with my laptop – either recliner, desk, or treadmill desk (I rotate around to keep the blood circulating). I reread what I wrote the day before, tinker with it for longer than I should, then get down to writing new words. On lawyering days (I still work part time at my day job as an attorney) I don’t get down to writing until about eight at night.
5. Do you have an interesting writing quirk or habit?
Afternoon tea. Gotta have it. In fact, I’m going to go brew a cup now. Be right back!
6. What was one of the most surprising things you learned as a published author?
I’m amazed at how great it feels when someone I don’t know tells me she loves my book. I’ve heard it from my husband, my sister, my editor…but when someone who knows me only as an author takes the time to email me or leave a comment on my Facebook author page, it’s surreal! And humbling, and absolutely awesome.
7. What authors or friends influenced you in helping you become a writer?
I wouldn’t be a published author if not for regency romance author Anne Barton, who just happens to be my cousin. We live quite a distance apart and used to see each other only rarely, but when she heard through the family grapevine that I was taking a stab at writing romance, she took me under her wing, hustled me off to my first RWA National conference, and now we’re not only cousins, we’re close friends and writing buddies who critique each other’s work. I’m so lucky to have her wisdom and support!
8. What does your family think about your career as a published author?
From my 89-year-old aunt (who will be kicking up her heels at my book launch party later this month) to my sister (who’s throwing that party for me) to my brother and his family (living in Paris) and my newly-discovered cousin Jen (across the world in Australia), my entire family is at least as thrilled about my new career as I am. But nobody – nobody! – is more proud and excited than my husband Billy. He tells me every day, but even better is when I overhear him talking to someone else about it – the love and pride in his voice gives me chills!
9. Besides writing, what other interests do you have?
Painting! I’m not very good, but when I’m stuck on a plot point, moving from the page to the canvas seems to unstick my brain. I love walking with Bella, our magical rescue dog, on the country roads around our house. And going out to dinner with friends… does that count as an interest?
10. Can you tell us about what’s coming up next for you writing wise?
The Save the Date series continues with The Wedding Vow (coming this fall) and The Wedding Band (coming spring 2015). In between those two novels will be another novella, The Wedding Gift, due out next winter. That will keep me busy until the end of this year. After that, who knows? I’m open to suggestions!
11. How can readers connect with you online?
You can find me at http://www.caraconnelly.com. Stop by and drop me an email or sign up for my newsletter! I’m also on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/caraconnellyromance and on Twitter at http://www.twitter.com/@cara_connelly. Give me a shout, I’d love to chat!
Thanks so much for having me on the blog today – this was fun!