From the very beginning of my writing career, which admitedly, hasn't been that long, I have been enthralled by the books of Mary Connealy. The first book I read of her's was Petticoat Ranch, and of course, I had to read the rest of the Sophie's Daughters series just to find out what happened to them all! And recently, her 'Trouble in Texas' series tingled me all the way to my toes.
So, imagine my excited delight when she agreed to do an interview with me. I was beyond happy. Ecstatic doesn't even begin to describe my feelings. I am thrilled to be able to share with my readers the advice of Mrs. Mary Connealy. Here are the answers to the questions I asked her.
Me: As an established author, I'm sure you've been able to travel to some beautiful locations. What is your favorite place to visit?
MC: The traveling I've done because I'm an author is mainly to writer's conferences. I would NOT have gotten to this places any other way.
New York City twice, Denver, Indianapolis, Minneapolis, Atlanta, St. Louis, Dallas. These aren't really my dream places, not a bucket list town included. I'm more interested in natural beauty, especially if they can be settings for a book. I want to see Lake Tahoe, Yellowstone, The Pacific Northwest. Mountains! But I do love that I've been sort of forced to go see these cities.
Me: Of all the books you've written, which was your favorite and why?
MC: This is a hard question with a cliché answer...but the cliché is honestly true. The true answer always is THE ONE I'M WORKING ON NOW. It's just that you go so DEEP into the story and characters and setting that you are immersed and in love with your tale. And then you start a new book and THAT'S your favorite.
Me: Are there any new authors that have grasped your interest?
MC: Not sure she's so new anymore, but I love Karen Witemeyer, she writes fun, action packed westerns like I do and she does it so well. Margaret Brownley is really great. I read all my buddies from Seekerville. Http://www.seekerville.blogspot.com Tina Radcliffe, Ruth Logan Herne, Janet Dean, Debby Giusti and Julie Lessman all had a new release in the last month or two. There are thirteen of us in all and I really enjoy all their work and that keeps me pretty busy reading!
Me: Is there anything you find particularly challenging in your writing?
MC: Everyday is a challenge, if it's not HARD you're not doing it right. But it's fun, too. Worth every moment of the challenge!
Me: How long does it usually take you to write a book?
MC: I write 1000 words a day five days a week. Sometimes I write MORE but I try to NEVER write less. That makes a book, mine are around 80,000 words, take about 3 to 4 months.
Me: Are there certain characters you would like to go back to, or is there a theme or idea you’d love to work with?
MC: A strong theme for me is always FAMILY. I like family to end up together. I'm sure that has something to do with me wanting my own children close. And I usually nag them until they move back near me.
Me: What is the biggest thing that people THINK they know about your genre, that isn't so?
MC: The only thing that popped into my mind was, I have a firm policy, if I read a Louis L'Amour book or watch a John Wayne movie and KNOW they've got it wrong....I usually just go with them instead of with the truth. Because who's gonna believe me, huh? If Louis and John say this is how the west was, then that's going to be the way people think the west was.
Mary Connealy is the bestselling author of romantic comedy with cowboys. She is a Carol Award winner, a RITA winner and Christy. She is also an IRCC Award Finalist. This proves that she is an amazing author and I know that we can learn so much from her. If you want to learn more about this wonderful lady, follow this link to visit her website, http://www.maryconnealy.com/index.html