Friday, September 30, 2005

Q&A with Janet Mullany

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Happy Friday! Please join me in welcoming Janet Mullany to our Friday Q&A!

1) Can you give us a blurb about your current book?

First, don't let the cover art fool you. It is by no means as sweet and innocent as those two lovely young things on the cover would suggest. Dedication is about a couple who meet up again twenty years after a brief and badly-ended affair when they were both very young. Adam, the former rake, is now a rather stuffy country gentleman, and Fabienne was a naive convent-educated French emigree (she fled the French revolution) who is now a very sophisticated and independent woman. She is a patroness of the arts who holds a fashionable literary salon, and she starts an intimate correspondence with a writer of gothic novels, Mrs. Ravenwood. But when she tries to meet up with Mrs. Ravenwood she runs into Adam. Meanwhile she spills her guts to this woman she knows only through letters, and at the same time finds she's involved with Adam again, and a lot of issues from the past are unearthed. And Adam is in a very tricky position--he's Mrs. Ravenwood, and whether Fabienne knows this or not, he's in big trouble.

2) What is your favorite thing about being an author?

Other than the entourage, adoring fans, and huge amounts of money? Quite honestly, it gives me enormous pleasure that people have bought my book and enjoyed it. I did my first booksigning today and it was wonderful how excited people were to buy my book.

3) What is the toughest thing about being an author?

At this point, writing! I think what happens now to the book and its sales is really out of my hands, although I'm doing what I can to promote it, and I hope people who enjoy it will recommend it to their friends, which is a great selling technique. But the process of writing is time-consuming and solitary, and you have to carve out time to do it and be very focused. It's very hard to do that if you're continually jumping onto amazon to see how your book is doing!

4) Do you remember your first kiss? Can you tell us the story?

Eew. Best not to ask.

5) So many authors struggle with writing love scenes. Do you have any tricks you could share?

Don't rely on cliches for body parts (do we really need more pebbled nubs?). I'm also a great believer in having my characters talk while they make love, and having different sorts of love scenes; you don't need a high emotional intensity every time--let your h/h just have fun once in a while! Susie Bright wrote a great book called "How to Write a Dirty Story: Reading, Writing, and Publishing Erotica," which I highly recommend. Above all, don't be afraid of love scenes. We reveal so much about ourselves as writers that a hot love scene is just another minor embarrassment on top of all the others.

6) Who is your movie star boyfriend and why?

Sean Connery, who only gets better and better as he ages.

7) Tell us about the first time you saw your book on the shelf. Was it a better moment than getting The Call?

I wasn't stuttering and drooling quite so much! Quite honestly, it didn't feel like anything particularly personal. I thought, "oh good, I'm next to Catherine Mulvaney," and then plucked the two copies off the shelf and asked a salesperson if I could sign them. My daughter, who was with me, was mortified.

8) When you read for fun, do you evaluate the books you're reading? What do you look for?

I try to turn off the radar because I've only been writing for five years but I've always read for pleasure. However, my time is precious, and if I don't like something, I won't waste time on it, unless it's so spectacularly bad I can't stop (like slowing to look at a car crash). I read a lot of other genres--I've always loved mysteries, for instance, and now I enjoy them more because of the complexity and expertise of the plotting.

Thanks, Janet!

For more info on Janet, visit her website.

Next Friday's guest is paranormal author, Gena Showalter.


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