Another one of my fabulous Wild Rose Press sistahs is joining me today for a sit-down interview! Please give a warm welcome to Mary Morgan. Mary has a new historical book out just in time for the Holiday gift giving season!!! She’s giving us a little preview of it today and I’m sure after reading the blurb and excerpt you’re gonna head right over and click on one of the buy links! Here’s Mary.
Mary: The Writer
- What drives you to write? The passion of my stories. They demand to be told, and I love weaving a good tale. It’s the Irish bard within my blood, and writing is another way for me to breathe.
- What genre(s) of Romance do your write, and why? Historical, Paranormal, Time Travel, Fantasy. It’s a mixture of everything I love—from Celtic Mythology, history, and a yearning to return to the past. Often times, I’ve stated I’m a woman in the wrong century.
- What genre(s) of Romance do you read, and why? I’m an eclectic reader, and it depends on my mood. During the spring, it’s regency romances. Summer is a mixture of fantasy, contemporary, and non-fiction reads. Autumn is mostly paranormal (I love a good vampire romance). And during the holidays and winter, it’s mostly short holiday/winter romances, in particular the Harlequin seasonal historical. They’re short and a perfect way to keep me in the spirit of the season. It’s a ritual I started when I worked for Borders Books. The retail industry can put a damper on anyone working during that time of year.
- What’s your writing schedule? Do you write everyday? I write every day. Monday-Saturday, my day begins at 5:00am. I tend to all the business side of writing—from checking emails, writing blog posts, and scheduling social media blasts. At around 9:00, I go for a walk, bike ride, or yoga. Not only do I get in exercise, but also I’ve found this to be a good time to plot out scenes for the day. It’s what I call, “my character round table.” I’m listening to where they (my characters) wish to go. My writing hours are generally from 11:00 (thirty minutes for lunch) until 5:00-5:30pm (I turn into a pumpkin after 6pm). On Sundays, I print out what I’ve written during the week and do line-edits on the couch. I love looking at my book this way. It’s a wonderful time to edit, add, delete, and really read the story. I call this my “down time.” Recently, I’ve challenged myself to write seven to eight hours one day a week. It’s phenomenal. I shut out the real world and dive into my story early in the morning.
- Give us a glimpse of the surroundings where you write. Separate room? In the kitchen? At the dining room table? The magic happens in the corner of my bedroom overlooking my garden. My writing desk is an antique (approximately 300 years old). To my right is my father’s desk he had as a child. Books on writing, history, and Celtic mythology surround me. Ancient maps, stones (from my travels in Europe), and crystals are tucked into nooks within the desk. In addition, I’ve become a collector of blades—from owning a claymore to a small sgian dubh, a Scottish small, single-edged knife.
- Are you the kind of writer who needs total quiet to compose, or are you able to filter out the typical sounds of the day and use your tunnelvision? Yes, I require a quiet environment. However, I’m usually in my room with the door closed. I envy those that can go to coffee places to write. There’s too much energy, and I wouldn’t be able to focus on my writing.
- Do you listen to music while you write, and if so, what kind? If not, why not? Music is my muse, especially Celtic music. I have a huge collection of instrumental music on my computer. It fuels the emotions. The only time I don’t listen to music is when I’m doing edits from my editor. I need total concentration.
- How did you come up with the plotline/idea for your current WIP? Desmond O’Quinlan first appeared in Dragon Knight’s Axe, Order of the Dragon Knights, Book 3. He’s one of Fiona’s (wife of Dragon Knight Alastair MacKay) brothers. He kept tapping me on the shoulder (and sometimes yelling), requesting his story. Apparently, he had unfinished business with Alastair MacKay and was harboring resentment toward the Dragon Knight for leaving his sister. I loved returning home to Scotland, the Dragon Knights, and their families.
- Which comes first for you – character or plot? And why? The character. I see them all standing in a Great Hall within a castle, demanding their story. Usually, there’s a sequence of events that will place one before the other, but I’ve found that when the strongest character will voice his/her reasons, I’ll listen and go from there.
- What 3 words describe you, the writer? Passionate. Romantic. Bard. (Peggy here: LOVELOVELOVE that!)
Mary, The Person:
- Tell us one unusual thing about yourself – not related to writing! I’m a Beauty and the Beast fan. The television series (late 1980’s) starring Ron Perlman and Linda Hamilton.
- Who was your first love and what age were you? A boy in my history class and I was thirteen.
- If you could relive one day, which one would it be? Think GROUNDHOG DAY, the movie for this one – you’ll have to live it over and over and…. Summer Solstice 2000 on the Isle of Skye in Scotland. Mystical, magical, and one that remains with me.
- Do you like a guy in boxers, briefs, or commando? Definitely commando. 😉
- If you had to give up one necessary-can’t-live-without-it beauty item, what would it be? My hair products. I have curly hair. Enough said. (Peggy here: I sososososo relate!)
- What three words describes you, the person? Optimistic. Loyal. Generous.
- If you could sing a song with Jimmy Fallon, what would it be? “Lean on Me,” by Bill Withers.
- If you could hang out with any literary character from any book penned at any time line, who would it by, why, and what would you do together? Morgaine from “The Mists of Avalon.” I love this tale of her. She’s often portrayed as dark and evil, but this story spun a different perspective of the legend. We would spend the time together wandering the hills of Avalon.
I love the Actor’s Studio show on Bravo, so this is my version of it:
- Favorite sound: Children’s laughter
- Least favorite sound: Children crying
- Best song ever written “The Celts,” by Enya
- Worst song ever written “Grandma Got Run Over by a Reindeer.” It has a catchy tune, but I can’t stand the lyrics. (Peggy here- you would not be surprised how many authors have told me this in their interviews! this is a very not-liked song)
- Favorite actor and actress Richard Armitage and Maureen O’Hara
- Who would you want to be for 1 day and why? ( It can be anyone living or dead) Queen Victoria. Regardless of her sheltered life prior to becoming queen at 18, she was an extraordinary woman.
- What turns you on? A man’s smile.
- What turns you off? Rude behavior.
- Give me the worst 5 words ever heard on a first date (here’s mine: “Is that your real hair?”) I’ve only dated one man, and he was the perfect date. My husband. (BEST ANSWER EVAH!!!!)
- What’s your version of a perfect day? Walking along the beach with my husband.
Hi Peggy! Thanks for having me on your wonderful blog today! I’m excited to share my new release, A Highland Moon Enchantment. I’ve returned home to Scotland and the Dragon Knights this holiday season.
When the O’Quinlan brothers entered the story in Dragon Knight’s Axe, Order of the Dragon Knights, Book 3, I knew each would demand their own story. Desmond O’Quinlan kept tapping my shoulder (and yelling in my ear), requesting a rematch with Dragon Knight, Alastair MacKay. Apparently, he had unfinished business with Alastair for leaving his sister, Fiona. In truth, I sensed a deeper meaning behind Desmond’s foul mood and growing anger at the Dragon Knight. However, Ailsa MacDuff will become his greatest challenge, and the real reason for his bitterness will be exposed.
The light of a Midwinter feast and the glow of a Highland full moon will weave its magic over these two warriors.
You first meet this warrior in Dragon Knight’s Axe, Order of the Dragon Knights, Book 3
Irish warrior, Desmond O’Quinlan has never surrendered his heart to any woman. He has no wish to have his soul tortured by love. Yet, the moment he locks gazes with Ailsa, his fate is destined for an adventure he never fathomed. He may have battled alongside a Dragon Knight, but his greatest challenge will come from within his own heart.
Ailsa MacDuff, a warrior among her clan, has no desire to have a man chain her to a life of obedience. However, that is before she meets Desmond. The temptation to allow this warrior inside her heart is a risk she dares to take, but one that could lead to a future of emptiness and sorrow.
When betrayal looms from within, the battleground of love is no match for these two warriors. Can the power of a Highland full moon be strong enough to unite or destroy them?
His mind screamed to stay rooted in his chair, but his body betrayed him. Standing, he reached for her hand.“I will escort ye to your chamber.”
She eyed him with curiosity and stood. “Nae. Take me to the north wall. I hear the view of the loch is one that steals the breath from your lungs.”
“Done.” When her fingers slipped into his, Desmond fought the urge to crush her to his chest.
Placing her soft hand in the crook of his arm, he led her quickly out of the hall and up the stairs. Bending to the left, he took her along a corridor and up a narrow circular pathway. The torches flickered as he approached the door leading to the north wall.
A cold draft blew by them, and she shivered. Instantly, regret filled him realizing he had not considered to bring a cloak for her.
Desmond paused by the door. “Ye should not venture out into the biting cold without a cloak.”
Her eyes narrowed. “I simply wish to capture a quick look, not spend the night sleeping out there.”
Shaking his head, he pushed open the massive oak door. Brittle air slapped at his face while they made their way up along the wall.
“’Tis cold,” she muttered, but chuckled softly and hugged his arm. “But ye are
“We shall not tarry long,” he assured her and placed a warm hand over hers.
“Oh, sweet Goddess. Look at the moon, Desmond. Her light shimmers over the water. I have now witnessed the charm of the loch in sunlight and moonlight. Though our rivers are stunning on their own, they cannae rival this view. As I have told ye, our island is shrouded in mists, so ye cannae see verra far out into the sea.”
Desmond’s focus was not on the moon, but the beauty standing beside him. To take what he dared not possess. He marveled at her delight of the striking scene.
Ailsa turned toward him. “Thank ye, Desmond, truly.”
Her nearness was overpowering, seducing him in a way he had never known. Desmond cupped her chin. Her eyes widened, and her lips parted in invitation. Moonlight and lust danced within her eyes. No longer did he battle with his mind and body, and he slowly lowered his head.
And under the silent whisper of a full moon, Desmond captured her soft lips within his own. He
could taste her sweetness mixed with the wine, and desire shot through his veins. His hands shook as he placed them securely on her waist. As he deepened the kiss, she placed her hands around his neck. Desmond groaned, crushing her body against him.
Award-winning Scottish paranormal romance author, Mary Morgan resides in Northern California, with her own knight in shining armor. However, during her travels to Scotland, England, and Ireland, she left a part of her soul in one of these countries and vows to return.
Mary’s passion for books started at an early age along with an overactive imagination. She spent far too much time daydreaming and was told quite often to remove her head from the clouds. It wasn’t until the closure of Borders Books where Mary worked that she found her true calling—writing romance. Now, the worlds she created in her mind are coming to life within her stories.
If you enjoy history, tortured heroes, and a wee bit of magic, then time-travel within the pages of her books.
Visit Mary’s website at http://www.marymorganauthor.com where you’ll find links to all of her books, blog, and pictures of her travels.