I read Grace’s Christmas novel Lady Sophie’s Christmas Wish earlier this month and loved it! You can read my review here. Grace is going to spend a little time at OUAC and answer a few questions for us. I hope you enjoy them!
OUAC: Tell us a little bit about yourself.
GB: I started writing about five years ago, at the age of 47, but still run a child welfare law practice and am in the court room regularly. I live in a restored Civil War vintage log cabin and consider a day when I don’t have to leave the property a good day.
OUAC: Who are some of your favorite authors?
GB: Joanna Bourne, Carolyn Jewel, Loretta Chase, Mary Balogh, Meredith Duran, Julie Ann Long, Sophia Nash, JR Ward, Judith Ivory, Jennifer Ashley… to name a few.
OUAC: Do you have any books sitting in Mt. Read Me?
GB: I try to keep a Georgette Heyer going at all times, a craft/history book going at all time Victorian People and Ideas by Richard Altick) and a romance going at all time. Joanna Bourne’s The Black Hawk is the current indulgence.
OUAC: Do you have any books on your keeper shelf?
GB: Tons. When you’ve been reading romance as long as I have…
OUAC: What are some of your favorite pastimes?
GB: This is trifle problematic. Writing was a pastime, and now it has taken on a more significant status. Reading is still a pastime, and I do travel a lot.
OUAC: Do you have any guilty pleasures? (Chocolate, Reality TV, etc.)
GB: Jasmine green tea with table cream and agave nectar. Candles with floral scents. Lily of the valley soap from Penhaligon’s, and Opus 1870 fragrance from the same establishment.
OUAC: Can you walk us through a normal writing day for you?
GB: Get up EARLY and spend a few hours on the WIP. Check in on a few blogs, FB, Twitter. Head off to the law office. Spend the evening reading over whatever I wrote that morning, answering email, tending blogs, updating the website. Repeat, repeat, and on weekend, leave out that part about the office and meet a buddy or two for brunch.
OUAC: What is the best writing advice you’ve received?
GB: You know you’re a writer if… you have to write.
OUAC: What advice would you give any aspiring writers reading this?
GB: Never give up, and don’t be too impressed with people who are making a lot of noise about writing. There are plenty of folks who go to many conferences, take many workshops, buy lots of craft books and seem to be on a first name basis with every agent and editor out there. How nice for them. Goggling at them as they flap around and name drop and quote books won’t get your WIP completed and polished.
OUAC: What drew you to writing historical romance?
GB: Forty years of reading it, of being sustained through tough times by that hour at the end of the day when a happily ever after was within at least the grasp of my imagination.
OUAC: What is your favorite part of your career?
GB: Hearing that, as Julia Quinn put it: I made a difference in somebody’s afternoon.
OUAC: Lady Sophie’s Christmas Wish is the fourth book about the Windham children. Do you have a favorite brother or sister?
GB: I love them all, and find the one I’m working on right now is the one I resonate with most strongly. At present, that’s Lady Louisa, who with her dear Joseph has utterly stolen my heart.
OUAC: You are a practicing lawyer in child welfare law, did this help when writing Kit’s story?
GB: Nah. What helped was having been a single mom from Beloved Offspring’s day one. There are books and books and books out there, and yet… nobody can tell you the things that are unique to your baby. I do love children though. Haven’t met the kid I didn’t like, in fact.
OUAC: Kit has a very predominate role in Lady Sophie’s Christmas Wish. Was it fun writing the parts that contained him?
GB: We are programmed to react to infants with a protective, caretaking response—the sociologists call it “The Cute Response.” The Christmas story is the story of a baby’s arrival, and that was my point of departure for Sophie and Vim’s situation. And yet, knowing what is best for a child is impossible. No matter how hard you try to do the right thing, you can’t know for certain your decisions are the “best” ones. That dilemma helped propel Sophie and Vim’s story forward.
OUAC: Do you have a favorite scene in Lady Sophie’s Christmas Wish? (As few spoilers as possible)
GB: The end, when Sophie and Vim’s situation resolves, and the three wise men get to see their machinations come to fruition. Ensemble scenes are tricky to write, but that one was easy.
OUAC: At the back of Lady Sophie’s Christmas Wish, it mentions that the remaining sisters will get a book of their own. Which sister is next?
GB: So glad you asked! In May 2012, we will see Lady Maggie’s Secret Scandal hit the shelves. It’s not quite spoiling to say that Maggie Windham has secrets, and she turns to a trusted family resource to help her deal with them, only to find herself very inconveniently falling in love.
OUAC: Can you tell us a little bit about the next book?
GB: After Maggie comes Lady Louisa’s Christmas Knight which will be out in October 2012, and then the first in a new Scottish Victorian series, featuring Lord Ian MacGregor, an impoverished earl who thinks to marry for money, only to find his heart has other plans.
OUAC: Did any of your family’s Christmas traditions make it into Lady Sophie’s Christmas Wish? If not, can you tell us a little bit about your traditions?
GB: I was raised in a big family, so Christmas meant a lot of people, tons of great food, and much decking of halls. We would usually go cut our tree at a place that raised basset hounds as well as Christmas trees, so petting the puppies added considerably to the duration of the excursion. Because this was my dad’s expedition to lead, that meant Mom got a little more time to herself at home.
|Info on Grace Burrowes:
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Grace Burrowes is the pen name for an award-winning author of historical romances. The Heir, received starred reviews from Publishers Weekly and Booklist, and was selected as a Publishers Weekly Best Book of the Year for 2010. Both The Heir and its follow-up, The Solider, are New York Times and USA Today bestsellers. She is a practicing attorney specializing in family law and lives in a restored log cabin in western Maryland without a TV, DVD or radio because she’s too busy working on her next books. For more information, please visit http://www.graceburrowes.com/.
Lady Sophie’s Christmas Wish by Grace Burrowes
in stores now!
All she wants is peace and anonymity…
Lady Sophie Windham has maneuvered a few days to herself at the ducal mansion in London before she must join her family for Christmas in Kent. Suddenly trapped by a London snowstorm, she finds herself with an abandoned baby and only the assistance of a kind, handsome stranger standing between her and complete disaster.
But Sophie’s holiday is about to heat up…
With his estate in ruins, Vim Charpentier sees little to feel festive about this Christmas. His growing attraction for Sophie Windham is the only thing that warms his spirits—but when Sophie’s brothers whisk her away, Vim’s most painful holiday memories are reawakened.
It seems Sophie’s been keeping secrets, and now it will take much more than a mistletoe kiss to make her deepest wishes come true…
Giveaway Details (Open to US/Canada Only):
*Sourcebooks is giving away two copies to two lucky OUAC readers!
*If you’d like to be entered, please leave a comment for Grace below. You will also need to leave an email address in your comment. To avoid getting spam in your email your email address should look like this stephanie(at)onceuponachapter(dot)com. This will keep the spam bots from finding you. 🙂
*OUAC’s giveaway policy can be found here.
*Giveaway ends 12/7/11 at 11:59 PM CST.