Please help me welcome Marie Astor to the blog today! I'm so excited to have her back for a repeat visit. This time I get to ask her questions.
Tell us a little about yourself.
Hi Krystal! Thank you very much for inviting me over to your blog! I’m thrilled to be your guest. My name is Marie Astor. I write contemporary romance and romantic suspense for adult readers, and I have also written a fantasy adventure novel for young adults. The complete list of my books so far includes the following titles: Lucky Charm, On the Rim of Love, To Catch a Bad Guy, This Tangled Thing Called Love, a short story collection, A Dress in a Window, and young adult fantasy, Over the Mountain and Back. Please visit my website, www.marieastor.com , if you’d like to find out more about me and my books.
Did you always want to be an author?
Yes, I have always wanted to be an author. In fact, I penned the first draft of my young adult novel, Over the Mountain and Back, when I was fourteen years old, as an anniversary gift to my parents. After that life took over and I abandoned my writing dreams for a while. Then, on my thirtieth birthday, my parents surprised me by presenting me with the notebook that contained the story I had written all those years ago. A year later, Over the Mountain and Back, grew to a novel of 95,000 words. I have been writing ever since.
What made you choose to write romance?
I love reading all genres, but I particularly enjoy love stories and fantasies. I write romance because I believe in true love and happily ever after. I love the idea of bringing sunshine to my readers by cheering them up with a good love story.
What is your favorite part of being a writer/author?
Creating new characters and plot lines are the parts that I love the most. Writing a novel is a long-term commitment. To me, the initial stage when you are just sitting down and putting down the plot line is the most exciting part: creating the characters, making them into fully-fledged beings and fitting them into a story line that works. Then comes the hard part of writing it all down, and then, finally, after months of work, the rewarding moment of writing the final sentence.
Tell us a little about your book. What inspired you to write it?
Two winters ago I visited Banff, British Columbia. I have always thought that there is something very special about the atmosphere of ski towns, and I was charmed by Banff’s quaint streets and the wonderful people who walked them. An idea for a contemporary romance became to form in my mind: a big city girl meets a big-mountain skier who is rooted in his small hometown. By the end of my ten-day stay at Banff, I had jotted down an outline and notes on the main characters: Maggie and Taylor, as well as Taylor’s best friends: Shawn and Hannah. Here is a quick book blurb:
Maggie Robin has been dating the irresistibly good-looking, successful Jeffrey Preston for two years. But when Jeffrey proposes marriage a week after Maggie’s college graduation, she is no longer sure if she wants to marry a workaholic TV producer.
Maggie’s doubts culminate when during a ski trip to British Columbia, she meets Taylor Denton, a handsome, free-spirited big mountain skier who is the complete opposite of Jeffrey. It does not take Maggie long to realize that she has fallen in love with Taylor and she decides to break off her engagement with Jeffrey. But just when she thinks she has found the love of her life, an ill-fated misunderstanding tears Maggie and Taylor apart.
A week later, Maggie is told that Taylor has died in a tragic ski accident; yet, her heart refuses to believe in Taylor’s death. When Maggie returns to Taylor’s native town, she learns that Taylor is indeed alive, but has been seriously injured. Resolved to bring her lover back to life Maggie stands by Taylor’s side, convincing him to embrace life again.
You can pick up your copy here:
Do you plot and outline or do you just write? Plotter or Pantser?
I would say that I do a mixture of the two: first, I’ll jot down a general outline, and as I finish each chapter, I will do a more detailed outline for the next few chapters.
Can you tell us about the process of getting your first book published?
I self-published on Amazon Kindle. I think that Amazon has provided a wonderful platform for authors to connect with their readers.
What advice would you give new authors? What have you learned about the business?
Keep writing! Every day I learn something knew about the business and I hope to learn more, but my first and foremost priority is to keep writing. To me, the most rewarding process of writing is hearing back from my readers; to know that your book brought joy to a reader, is the most wonderful feeling in the world.
Do you have another book in the works?
Yes! I have recently published the first installment in my romantic suspense series, To Catch a Bad Guy, and now I am working on the sequel. I am not yet sure when the release date will be, but I hope that it will be soon.
What do you like to do in your free time, besides read and write of course?
I love all things outdoors: hiking, swimming, skiing. I find that just going for a walk in the park really clears my head, filling me with new ideas.
Where do you dream of going on vacation?
My long-time dream is to visit all the national parks. One day I’ll get there!
Boxers or Briefs?
Boxers are so much sexier!
Cookies or cake?
Pizza or hamburger?
Beer, Wine, or mixed drink?
I like them all! Beer on a hot day, red wine with steak, and a cocktail for a girls’ night out.
Where to find you:
It was a pleasure getting to know you better, Marie.
Everybody be sure to leave a comment and email to get your name in the drawing for a fabulous silver amethyst necklace!
Giveaway – Continental U. S. only
Thank you, Krystal for hosting me today! It was a pleasure being your guest!
Thank you All for checking out my books!