Today is a great day at my blog as one of my favorite historical authors, Amanda McIntyre, is here talking about her writing life and new release, Fallen Angel. I thoroughly enjoyed our interview and adore Amanda even more as she's giving away one of her previous releases, Wild & Unruly, to a random commenter leaving a comment answering the giveaway question. So let's welcome Amanda and get the conversation flowing.....
TSP: Knowing what you do now, would you have done anything differently in the early years of your writing career?
AM: I have a saying that I love from Pablo Picasso that goes, “I am always doing that which I don’t how to do, in order that I may learn to do it.”
Whether the time is eleven years ago when I stepped over the threshold from a newspaper column to fiction writing, to this very moment as I consider what is to come next in my writing. I can’t think of anything specific. I do feel I’ve watched the industry evolve and change since I started. I can remember a time when eBooks were considered a passing trend, that there would never be the technology to make it possible, affordable—people wouldn’t like not having a book to hold in their hand. In a way, my experiences with those early days of e-books and small press publishing houses were part of a new pioneering spirit in the publishing industry. It’s mind-boggling to see how fast, how far the technology has brought us-how nearly every publishing house, large and small has an area devoted to eBooks. I love a print book as much as the next person. I love the smell when you walk into a library or bookstore—though anymore it’s harder to detect that wonderful ”book” smell over the coffee grinder. But I digress…the only thing that is certain is change. I’m waiting for the technology that allows the option of a “book” smell as you read an eBook, or an eBook that allows you to interact with the story through all your senses.
TSP: What does your writing space look like and do you have any inspirational items surrounding you while writing?
AM: Oh dear. Right at the moment, it’s a bit of a disaster. Only in that, I’ve had my head in the edit dungeon this past week and prior to that involved in the holidays. I am an artist first, so yes; I’m very inspired by visual means. I have a wall of “inspiration” based on the pictures I’ve found of my characters, settings or seasons. Generally, I create a smaller version for each book as a reference guide as I write.
I’ve been told that I love ‘whimsy’—guilty! I love art in many forms—hats, paintings, statutes, music, research books. For example, I have a miniature replica of Stonehenge and a desktop Labyrinth that I’ve used to de-clutter my mind. I also use scent when I write; candles and men’s cologne are my favorite choices. Some days I write to music, others times I need earplugs or silencer head phones to block the sound. To my way of thinking, my office is my playground, the place where my creativity runs free.
TSP: You've written in many different genres, do any hold a particular place in your heart, and if so why?
AM: That’s an interesting question. As far as setting, I’ve loved all the places for the reasons of what they meant to the characters in my stories at the time. That’s the beauty however of my time-travel romance. I am able to take my characters into two different eras in the same book! Victorian London, the American Westward expansion, the Druids of ancient Ireland, and many, many modern day places have inspired me with their beauty and history.
TSP: Which of your books do you think has had the most profound impact on readers, and yourself, and why is that?
AM: I would say that always for any author, it’s the last book. Simply because it’s what is freshest in the minds of my readers and in my mind as well.
TSP: Beyond its blurb, what do you want us to know about Fallen Angel and the Sweet Magnolia series in general?
AM: That imagination is a wonderful thing. This is not your standard time-travel romance in that it really delves into the possibility of the “what if.” While doing research on this, I read that time-travel has not been disproven which in truth makes it possible then to yet be proven or disproven! That concept amazed me. Think about that!
In addition to that, I wanted a bit of the unknown, whimsy-if you will added into the story. What if time-travel was more than just an object, more than a person alone acting as a conduit from one place to another. What if that which is inside you (IE: your deepest desire, the thing that makes you whole) could take you on a wondrous journey to come face to face with that desire, even if it means being transported to another time or place to find it?
TSP: Which actor/actress do you picture playing the lead characters of Fallen Angel?
AM: Hum...in the role of Shado Jackson, Channing Tatum, in the role of Angel Marie Sutter-probably Amanda Seyfried.
TSP: Of all the characters you've written, which one do you wish you could be and why?
AM: Oh, I’m not sure I’d want to be any of my characters mainly because I send them on such twisted journeys to get to the HEA
But I think like most authors there are teensy bits of me already in all my characters, or bits of people I know and/or admire. Probably the closest to this however is my own bar I set for myself in terms of the heroine falling in love with the hero—I believe that if I haven’t fallen in love with my hero by the end of the story, then how are the readers supposed to? That of course leaves preferences wide open, but for me, if I fall in love with him, then I feel I’ve written the best story for them that I could.
TSP: How has the digital revolution affected your career and how you market yourself and do you have an eReader of some sort?
AM: See answer to question #1. I think most authors no matter where they are in their career have had to learn to utilize the Internet and its social media in order to market themselves. Blogs, Goodreads, Facebook, Twitter, Linked In, online author promotion sites, authors banning together in small groups to market and support one another and of course self-publishing. The world is your oyster if you learn the craft and keep learning, while not losing sight of the whimsy—the storytelling part of this whole sloppy enchilada.;) I have an iPad which I share with my husband, but I’m looking at getting a Kindle Fire or in a perfect world, a surface.;)
TSP: What do you have coming up next bookwise?
AM: I’m plotting out the third book in the Sweet Magnolia series called One Knight at the Sweet Magnolia. It’s going to be sexy, but funny, and not without its wicked witch!
TSP: My blog is all about favorite things, so what are your favorite things/the things you can't live without?
AM: Wow, that’s a tough question! Not people, things, right? I’m not sure if I could live without these or not, but here are my favorite things; (why do I feel like Julie Andrews about to break into song?
1) Coffee. Nectar of the Gods, 2) My Classic Black Bic pens and yellow mini legal pads that I use for plotting 3) Sunsets. Amazing, Inspiring. Comforting. 4) My Vintage radio/CD/vinyl record player and my eclectic music collection.
This has been an amazing interview, thank you for having me! I’d like to invite your followers to check out my website at www.amandamcintyresbooks.com There you can sign up for more on my monthly newsletter, ‘friend’ me at Facebook, or Follow me at Twitter and Goodreads!
One of the questions above asked if there was a particular place that I enjoyed writing about. Since I’m celebrating my new Time-Travel, FALLEN ANGEL in my TALES OF THE SWEET MAGNOLIA series, I’d like to ask you...
If you could go anywhere in time, what place or era would you like to go? Would you want to stay or have the option of returning?
-One winner will be chosen to receive a signed copy of the first book in this TT romance series, Wild & Unruly! Make sure to leave your email addy along withGiveaway ENDS AT 11:59 PM CST ON 2/1!