Thursday, September 19, 2013

Author Spotlight - Lori Connelly

Welcome today to my fellow Harper Impulse author, Lori Connelly, author of historical westerns.

1. Tell our readers a little bit about yourself.

I’m married, have three sons, one daughter-in-law, one grandbaby to be and two very spoiled dogs. A small town in the Willamette Valley of Oregon is where my family calls home but I dream of having a few acres to call my own. My husband already owns a goat, the famous Cowboy Marvin, but when we have our little farm, I’d like a miniature highland cow or two. Reading, writing and being out in nature camping, taking long walks or rock hounding are my favorite things to do. I usually carry a purse bulging with a book, a small notebook and index cards plus at least one backpack or bag for larger notebooks, pens and space to carry jasper because a person never knows when they might run across a good rock-hounding site wherever I go.

2. What number book is this? First? 100th? 200th?(Nora only!)

This is my debut. However, it is book 1 of a series. There will be a novella due out later this year and another full-length book next year. This may be the first you’ve heard of me but it won’t be the last.

3. Everyone who writes knows it's not easy - what methods do you use to keep at it on days when it would be so much easier to go shoe shopping?

I wish I had an easy answer to that. I used to set up a certain amount of time that I would write per week but I found it was easy to end up squandering it. I sought advice from some wise authors and now I set a word count goal of at least 1000 words per day. I’m still not perfect but am far more productive.

4. What is your top promo tip for other authors?

I’m new to promo but the best thing I’ve learned is to listen to other authors. Seek out authors who appear to have learned the promo ways and politely, respectfully ask. People in general are amazingly kind and generous with information and advice.

5. How does writing fit into your day? Or does your day fit in around your writing?

I write whenever I can grab a moment. Often while doing boring chores I’m reworking a difficult scene or allowing character conversations to play out in my mind. Finding a balance between writing, life, family, and boring chores is still a work in progress.

6. Do you write every day?

Usually, yes I do write every day. Sometimes it’s only a scribble on the tiny notebook tucked in my purse. And sometimes I write a ton of words and realize the next day I must delete almost all. It’s a compulsion.

7. Is there a book you haven't written yet that you're dying to? What genre?

I keep falling in love with my secondary characters and want to give them all a story of their own. In just the book I’m in the midst of writing now, stories for how the hero’s parents fell in love, the girl who rejected him and that girl’s sister both find love nagged at me until they found a home in my ‘to be written later’ file. Those stories would all be western historical romances.

I also have some characters I created long ago that belong to a fantasy story still rough but begging to be finished.

8. Do you have any tips, tricks or sacrificial rituals you do when you hit a story roadblock?

The best thing I’ve found to do when I hit a roadblock is to walk away from the writing for a time and do something boring. If my mind continues to worry the problem, I actively try to think about another part of the story. After a rest and refresh I’ll return and usually then I can see a way to make it work.

9. What was the most fun part of writing this book?

I loved looking up the route that Ben and Evie would travel and finding photographs for inspiration. Somehow, I managed to discover a number of handsome cowboy pictures that now live in my computer.

10. Do you write to music, or with the tv on in the background, or do you need complete silence?

Too much noise is a distraction but that’s a relative thing. I’ve a husband, sons, and dogs, if there is complete silence there is something very wrong. I write a lot in the living room, laptop on my lap, with the whole crew around. When they are particularly noisy I retreat to my bedroom, plug in my headphones, listen to some music and type in peace.


For fans of Diana Palmer and Linda Lael Miller comes the first in a brand new and emotionally gripping trilogy, The Men of Fir Mountain.

The day Evie met Benjamin Rolfe, a man with an unbridled enthusiasm for life and grandiose plans to match, she knew they’d marry and live happily ever after…

Five years later, her charming rancher is now a bitter, cynical stranger with a shaky moral compass. And after too many shattered dreams, Evie no longer believes in fairy tale endings.

When they lose the homestead and head out on the open road to start a new life in Oregon, their marriage is already strained to breaking point. Can their love survive this second chance?

The Outlaw of Cedar Ridge is available from Amazon, Amazon UK, iTunes, Barnes & Noble and Kobo.

Help welcome Lori to the joys of social media on Twitter and Facebook. She also has a Pinterest board and a blog. She is the creator of the hugely fun round robin Written Fireside story (my latest instalment on this serial just went live here!)

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