Friday, December 24, 2010

with Vickie McDonough

Welcome to The Book Loft, Vickie!
Tell us about your epiphany moment when you decided you were going to seriously pursue writing and eventually publication.

I never planned to become a writer, although I have long been a reader. One day, a story started running through my mind and wouldn’t go away. It was affecting my sleep, so I thought I’d try writing it down, just to get it out of my head. Well, I wrote the whole book, and as soon as I was done, another story came. I wrote it down too, and started wondering if God was trying to get my attention. I talked to my husband, and we both felt I should take some writing classes and attend a conference and see where it would lead.

I suppose my epiphany moment was when I got a call from Cathy Marie Hake, telling me that our novella collection was being bought. That was a very exciting day.

I will have been writing ten years this coming January and have sold 26 books. I never could have dreamed things would turn out like they have.

Which of your books (published or upcoming) has been the most fun for you to write and which character is your favorite?
I would have to say The Anonymous Bride. I caused so much trouble for poor Luke and for the three mail-order brides who came to marry him, but my favorite character was probably Jack, the tomboy daughter of Rachel Hamilton, the boardinghouse owner. Jack is a tough ten-year-old girl, who gets into all kinds of trouble. She hates dresses, wishes she was a boy, and defies her frazzled single mother at every turn. I’d be lying if I didn’t admit that Jack is a whole lot like I was when I was young. She was a really fun character to write, and readers of the Texas Boardinghouse Brides series will be happy to know that Jack gets her own book, in Finally A Bride, the third book in the series, which releases in April, 2011. (And Vickie will be here at The Book Loft with Finally A Bride on April 18th and 19th. Don't miss it!)

What is your most difficult writing obstacle, and how do you overcome it?
The actual writing part. Why? Because it’s often hard and time-consuming. Days when I should be writing are the ones I tend to do the oddest chores at home. I was on a very tight deadline last week, and just couldn’t get the story to work. So, what do I do? Take all the coats out of the coat closet, sort them according to how they could be washed or if they had to be dry-cleaned, and then proceeded to clean them. I washed all my husband’s stinky baseball caps and cleaned out the whole closets. The spiders are gone. But I didn’t get a lot of writing done that day.

The only way to overcome a writing funk is to just sit down and write. Eventually, I’ll get past that point, and will do well until I get to the next hard part. I just might clean the attic out then.

What is the quirkiest thing you have ever done?
Oh, man. I don’t know. I bought a motorcycle when I was 14, using money I’d made babysitting. Does that count?

Are there things you put off doing because you dread them?
Yes. Did you know that writing a book can be scary? There are so many things that can go wrong. Do I have enough romantic tension between hero & heroine? Is my humor funny to the reader—or just to me? Did I develop the plot logically and at a good pace? I tend to put off starting a book at first, but once I jump into the story, it starts to flow and I get caught up in it.

What would a perfect day for you look like?
A Sonic breakfast croissant with bacon & a Coke. Very few emails that need my attention. Then finishing my word count for the day by noon and getting to have the rest of the day free. But, I know that’s not too likely to happen.

Tell us the range of the kinds of books you enjoy reading.
From 1880 to 1890. :0)
Oh, wait, that’s not what you meant, is it? I will read just about any book, but my favorite ones have a late 19th century time period with a western setting. I also enjoy Irish and Scottish historicals, contemporaries with a western setting, and they all must have a romance. I tend to shy away from a book written in first person, because I love seeing inside the hero’s head.

Are there certain foods or snacks keeps the words flowing for you?
No, not really. I’ve been dieting all this year and had to cut out sweets and fun foods. Hmm…maybe that’s why I’ve had so much writer’s block this year. Somebody please send me a Baby Ruth or a Butterfinger. I’m sugar-deprived!

Are there spiritual themes you like to write about?
I tend to write a lot about forgiveness. Also about trusting God when your situation seems completely impossible to overcome.

What lesson is the Lord teaching you right now or recently taught you?
That I can do all things in Christ. I had a quickly approaching deadline, and I ended up writing a whole different story than I’d originally pitched. I didn’t see how I would get it done, but I did.

When is your next book due out and can you tell us about it?
I have a South Carolina historical called Mutiny of the Heart, which releases in December. It’s a Heartsong Presents book and the first in a new series. The story is set in 1788 in Charleston. It’s the story of a Canadian woman who travels to America, a country she feels is responsible for her father’s death, to bring her young ward to his father. But when she finally arrives, the man is adamant the boy couldn’t possibly be his. The last thing she wants to do is leave the boy she has come to love with his wealthy father, but she can’t provide for him. Will the letter she bears make Lucas Reed realize the truth?

Thanks so much for being with us here at The Book Loft, Vickie!


You can purchase Second Chance Brides from Amazon.

Vickie is giving away a copy of Second Chance Brides . To be entered in the book giveaway, leave a comment. You can enter the book giveaway twice--once on each spotlight post.

10 comments:

Rita's Random Ramblings said...

I really enjoyed reading this interview! Great questions! As a writer the answers were refreshing to read! Thanks, Esther and Vickie!

Joanne Sher said...

Lovely interview - enjoyed getting to know Vickie. PLEASE enter me :)

Charity said...

Please enter me. I enjoy Vickie's books and have yet to read this one. Thanks!

esterried[at]yahoo[dot]com

Anonymous said...

I really like to read historical books. This one sounds good. Thank you for entering me.
Lori.
blessed6momatyahoo.com

Maureen said...

I love Vickie's books...Please include me!


alekee02[at]yahoo[dot]com

Anonymous said...

I'm all out of new books to read. this one would be just right for me. It sounds great.

apple blossom said...

thanks for a second chance to win

ABreading4fun [at] gmail [dot] com

apple blossom said...

gfc follower

ABreading4fun [at] gmail [dot] com

Meredith said...

Please enter me! Thanks for the giveaway!

meredithfl at gmail dot com

Meredith said...

Vickie's upcoming story sounds good too!

meredithfl at gmail dot com

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