Today I have with romance author Marie Lavender on my blog. Her latest book, Upon Your Return, is a historical romance.
Tell us a bit about yourself.
I am a romance author. I have published 16 books. I have been writing since I was a kid.
Where were you born and where do you call home?
I was raised in a small town in Indiana, so small they actually consider it “Small Town U.S.A.”. At the moment, I still live in Indiana, though I have plans to move eventually.
When did you first consider yourself a writer?
I feel like I’ve been writing forever. So I pretty much always considered myself a writer. I never considered myself an “author” until I published a book in 2010.
How much of yourself, your personality or your experiences, is in your books?
Oh, I think quite a lot is. Sometimes when I go back and read through stories, I can see a bit of myself bleeding through the text. I know the people closest to me notice it too. It’s not intentional at all. I think a lot of my beliefs have been influenced by my life experiences and that will come through occasionally in my characters. I think some of my characters are stubborn like me. That’s one example.
Have you started your next project? If so, can you share a little bit about your next book?
I plan to release an anthology very soon. It is a mixture of stories and poems called Miss Lavender’s Anthology of Ramblings. I am also polishing my sequel to my current release, Upon Your Return. It is titled Upon Your Honor, and it is about a young woman who finds herself in quite a bit of trouble when she stows aboard a ship.
Which of your characters is your favorite? Do you dislike any of them?
Though I can identify with Fara Bellamont in Upon Your Return, I still have a thing for Captain Grant Hill. What woman doesn’t want a hot captain showing interest in her? And the only characters I have disliked are the antagonists.
What was the most difficult thing/scene to write in this story?
I struggled a bit with the prologue. Getting into the mindset of a child is definitely not easy. I mean, I remember being a child, but this child was in Victorian France so that made it more difficult.
Did the story turn out the way you planned from the beginning? If not, what change happened that you didn’t expect?
I didn’t expect Fara to turn out so strong, but she did. She rose above her circumstances and took what was thrown at her pretty well. She made a life for herself in a time where she would have been ridiculed for it.
If you could be one of the characters from any of your books, who would it be and why?
I think I would want to be Fara Bellamont from Upon Your Return. Not because of her circumstances or anything, but more for the time period. I’ve always loved historical romances and I always kind of wondered what it would be like to travel back in time. I’m sure it wouldn’t be easy to live in that time, but it might be interesting to find out.
What book are you reading right now?
I am reading The Law of Love by Nora Roberts.
If you could meet two authors, who would you pick and why?
That’s hard. I would say J.R. Ward merely because I’d like to know what really spurred the Black Dagger Brotherhood series. And I might choose Catherine Coulter as well. She is very good with romances set in Regency England. She could be fascinating to talk to.
Tell us a random fact about you that we never would have guessed.
I like to color my hair red. It’s naturally dark brown.
Fara Bellamont has been back in society for a year after leaving Cluny Abbey, where her uncle sent her long ago. When he chooses a suitor for her for marriage, she fears that she will be forced to marry a stranger and live a miserable life. But, Fara finds herself thrust into an adventure of a lifetime when unforeseen circumstances cause her to place her trust in a strange man for protection. His intervention not only saves her, but puts her in an even more compromising position. Grant Hill, a trading captain, is enchanted by the young heiress not only because of her beauty, but because she is hardly conventional. Underneath her ladylike exterior lies a tigress. Grant cannot help but offer his protection as she is in need and he is far from immune from her charms. Fara just never bargained on the passion that she feels for Grant Hill. As events unfold, she must decide whether her desires and the dictates of her heart should trump the rules of society…
About the Author
At the tender age of nine, she began writing stories. Her imagination fueled a lot of her early child’s play. Even growing up, she entered writing contests and received a certificate for achieving the second round in one. She majored in Creative Writing in college because that was all she ever wanted – to be a writer. While there, she published two works in a university publication, and was a copy editor on the staff of an online student journal. After graduating from college, she sought out her dream to publish a book.
Since then, Marie has published sixteen books. Marie Lavender’s real love is writing romances, but she has also written mysteries, literary fiction and dabbled a little in paranormal stories. Most of her works have a romantic element involved in them. Upon Your Return is her first historical romance novel.
A list of her books and pen names are as follows:
Marie Lavender: Upon Your Return
Erica Sutherhome: Hard to Get; Memories; A Hint of Scandal; Without You; Strange Heat; Terror in the Night; Haunted; Pursuit; Perfect Game; A Touch of Dawn; Ransom
Kathryn Layne: A Misplaced Life
Heather Crouse: Express Café and Other Ramblings; Ramblings, Musings and Other Things; Soulful Ramblings and Other Worldly Things