- What genres do you enjoy writing?
All types. I usually like to write different kinds of romance stories, but now and then the muse surprises me with another genre entirely.
- Tell us about your latest book:
Second Chance Heart is contemporary romance about a woman who runs into her ex during a business trip. She thinks she’s so over him, but is she? Can she forget how he hurt her?
- What inspired the story? Where did you get that first bit of “ah ha” inspiration.
SCH came to me as a premise, a question really. I wanted to write a completely different story, about whether someone could be forgiven for what happened in their shared past. Of course, I didn’t know the answer until I was done writing it.
- Give us an insight into your main character. What does he/she do that is so special?
Dana Nelson is an interesting woman, tough but with some vulnerabilities even she can’t admit to herself at first. Dana is a lawyer from the city, but seeing her ex again brings back the past, as well as memories of her hometown.
- Who is your favorite character from your book and why?
I really like Dana and I can identify with her. But, in this, I’d have to say that Vince is probably also my favorite because he is handsome and mysterious. Who wouldn’t want their dream lover to grab them and kiss them against a wall?
- What was the hardest thing about writing your latest book?
As writers, we tend to put ourselves in someone else’s place. Dana’s ex-boyfriend cheated on her in the past. I lived through that in my own romantic history, so it wasn’t a stretch to show how the character experiences that kind of pain. It was, however, a challenge to show remorse from the side of the person who hurt the main character.
- Is there a message in your novel that you want readers to grasp?
I guess I want to convey that forgiveness is possible, even in situations you wouldn’t imagine you could forgive someone for. However, I think the hardest part is forgiving yourself.
- Which writers inspire you?
There are so many! I like Nora Roberts, J.R. Ward, Chloe Neil and several others.
- What does your writing process look like?
After I get an initial idea for a story, I write as many scenes and chapters until I get stumped. From there I go back and write a full outline, then write until the manuscript is finished. If I need to stop and research a part of the story for details or inspiration, I will.
- What are you working on at the minute?
Several projects actually. I always have so many works in progress at the same time, but the main ones I’m focused on this year are Upon Your Love, a historical romance and book three of the Heiresses in Love Series, as well as a sci-fi romance titled Blue Vision, which will be book one of the Code of Endhivar Series. Both of those are written and currently in edits. Two other manuscripts I plan to polish and hopefully have for release this year are Directions of the Heart, a romantic drama anthology, and Awakening, a paranormal thriller. After I’m finished with those? I might return to Blood Instincts, book two of the Blood at First Sight Series or Chasing Ginger, the start to a future romantic comedy series – The Misfits.
- How important are names to you in your books? Do you choose the names based on liking the way it sounds or the meaning? Do you have any name choosing resources you recommend?
I think names are pretty important. Sometimes I don’t always have a name chosen right away, or if I do, I take the time to make sure the personality and the story fits with that character. If it doesn’t work, then I am flexible about changing the name. I often use http://www.behindthename.com/ to find the right names for a story. And yes, I often go with a name because I like it or because of its meaning.
- Is there a certain type of scene that’s harder for you to write than others? Love? Action? Racy?
Sometimes action scenes can be challenging because things are moving fast, and each movement has to make sense.
- When did you decide to become a writer?
I think I am like a lot of other writers. I didn’t exactly choose the profession; it chose me. Sometime around the age of eight or nine years old, I realized this was what I wanted to do. Stories always played out in my head, and it made sense to write them down. Once I got them on paper, it felt like the most natural thing in the world.
- Why do you write?
I write to honor my characters and tell their stories. I write to explore other worlds, and to understand humanity a little better. How humans think and behave has always been fascinating to me. I think that’s why writers are natural observers. I write to discover these tales inside of me and hopefully give the world something to believe in.
- Where do your ideas come from?
My story ideas come from current events, from people I’ve met or known, from situations I’ve experienced, or sometimes virtually out of nowhere. The muse can be quite mysterious at times.
- What advice would you give to your younger self?
Have an enormous amount of patience. The best things in life take time, but don’t be afraid to go out and get them either.
- Which famous person, living or dead would you like to meet and why?
I think I’d like to have met Kurt Vonnegut just once, to see how he was in real life. I always enjoyed his work.
- What advice would you give to aspiring writers?
Find out why you have this burning urge to write inside of you. Is it for money or power? Or, is it for something far greater, because you cannot imagine doing anything else, because the story must be told and the muse won’t let you have any peace if you don’t? Knowing the deep reason for your need to write will, in a sense, define your whole career, and give you the courage and perseverance to keep going when times get tough.
- Is there anything else you would like to add that I haven’t included?
You can find a full list of my 22 books here.
- How can readers discover more about you and you work?
Readers can find out all about me on my website at https://marielavender.com/
- Tell the readers something about yourself that has nothing to do with writing.
I love the color hot pink!
- Do you have any tips for readers or advice for other writers trying to get published?
Be brave, despite your fears, when pursuing your dreams. Even if you’re not a writer, find that something that brings you the most joy and build a livelihood out of it.
After a wild storm forces her to take shelter in a small town inn, Dana Nelson thinks that all she has to worry about is a brief stay before she heads back to the city. She gets far more than she bargained for…
The last thing she expects is to run into an old flame, and even worse, the man who broke her heart twelve years ago. She’s sure that the only thing remaining between them is a strong attraction for another.
She can’t be more wrong…
The more time she spends with Vince Reynolds, the more she begins to believe she can trust him again. But, can she put her faith in the one man who captivates her, body and soul, or are some wounds too deep to heal?
Amazon Universal link: myBook.to/SCH
Bestselling multi-genre author of UPON YOUR RETURN and 21 other books. March 2016 Empress of the Universe title – winner of the “Broken Heart” themed contest and the “I Love You” themed contest on Poetry Universe. SECOND CHANCE HEART and A LITTLE MAGICK placed in the TOP 10 on the 2015 P&E Readers’ Poll. Nominated in the TRR Readers’ Choice Awards for Winter 2015. Poetry winner of the 2015 PnPAuthors Contest. The Versatile Blogger Award for 2015. Honorable Mention in the 2014 BTS Red Carpet Book Awards. Finalist and Runner-up in the 2014 MARSocial’s Author of the Year Competition. Honorable mention in the January 2014 Reader’s Choice Award. Liebster Blogger Award for 2013 and 2014. Top 10 Authors on AuthorsDB.com. Winner of the Great One Liners Contest on the Directory of Published Authors.
Marie Lavender lives in the Midwest with her family and three cats. She has been writing for over twenty years. She has more works in progress than she can count on two hands. Since 2010, Marie has published 22 books in the genres of historical romance, contemporary romance, romantic suspense, paranormal romance, fantasy, mystery/thriller, literary fiction and poetry. She has also contributed to several anthologies. Her current series are The Heiresses in Love Series, The Magick Series and The Blood at First Sight Series.
Amazon author page: Author.to/MarieLavender