Hi Barbara. Thanks for stopping and sharing some time with our readers. I’ve some questions of my own, and perhaps some of our readers do, too. So once my interview is over and readers wish to ask any other questions, they should feel free to ask them. Alright? Let’s get started.
I know that you recently joined a new blog group called Embracing Romance, 16 authors including yourself. Tell us what the group is all about.
One of the reasons I joined this group was to get to know my readers. All these authors write historicals, into which I’m putting a lot of my time right now, and they’re all very active on the Internet. I need the sort of push that comes from a group working together, or I will hole myself up in my cave most of the time.
I certainly wish you success in this endeavor as I’m sure our readers do. Here’s the link: www.embracingromance.com You’ve told me you love to travel.
Yes, I do. I’ve traveled extensively in the US and Canada and have also been to Europe, the Caribbean, and southern Africa. (If we ever discuss Heart of Constantine on your blog, I will have an anecdote about my experience in Swaziland.) I’ve been to Las Vegas so often on business that it feels like a second home. My favorite place on the whole North American continent is my home town, Vancouver, Canada — my heart has roots there that will never let go. I also loved Alaska; the air there smells wonderful!
I’ll be reading Heart of Constantine next week, so when I do the review, we’ll include your anecdote in Swaziland. When you vacation are you thinking about your books?
Always! And not just thinking. I get more writing done when I’m away from home, because I don’t have as many other responsibilities.
Did any particular place you vacationed in lead you to the setting of any one of your books?
The Indian Mounds in the southeastern US were one of the inspirations for the Bayou Gavotte series, although they don’t actually appear in a book until Heart of Constantine. The southwestern US was part of the inspiration for the character of Constantine Dufray, who is half Navajo. New Orleans was also a huge inspiration. I’m glad to be going there for the RT Convention in May, where I’ll be on a panel.
So far, I haven’t used any particular location in England as a setting, except London, but I often choose areas I’ve been — such as Oxfordshire, Sussex, and Lancashire — because I can visualize the area better if I’ve seen it.
What about future travel? Do you travel regularly?
My husband and I travel quite a bit, and I always look for ways to use it for research. London provides great opportunities.
Paris is gorgeous, and Venice is amazing. Next time I go to Ireland I hope to look around more. I loved Dublin, and would like to return and spend more time in Eire as well as returning to Ulster.
I’m dying to go to Scotland, particularly the Isle of Skye. I’ve spent quite a bit of time in Germany.
One area in the mountains of eastern Germany reminded me vividly of the woods where Hansel and Gretel met the wicked witch.
What’s your dream travel location?
At the moment, it’s Scotland, but I would also love to go to New Zealand and Australia.
Do you plan an itinerary for the trip in advance and go see specific places like museums, parks, libraries, or do you just get there and decide at that time?
Both. It depends on what else is planned, such as business meetings, seeing friends, etc. I like a mixture of planned and spontaneous activities.
The last of my questions. Can you tell us about the RT Convention in New Orleans? You said that you’ll be on a panel. What do they do at these conventions and what is the function of the panel?
I’ve never been to an RT Convention before. By what I’ve heard, it is mostly for readers, and it’s like one big, long party! However, there are presentations for writers as well. The panel I will be participating in is called From Novella to Novel. We’ll be talking about the differences between writing novels and novellas and discussing various aspects, such as pacing, character development, setting, and so on.
Thank you Barbara. And now gentle readers, if you have a question for Barbara she’ll be happy to answer it. She may not get to it right away, but she will answer as soon as she can. Thanks for joining us today.