What book do you think everyone should read?
For romance, Outlander. Non-romance, Crime and Punishment.
How long have you been writing?
My writing has evolved. When I was very young, I wrote these odd-ball “books” (loose term) about different kinds of cats. I did a lot of research and felt serious about it. I’m not sure I can explain today what this was all about! By the way, I do not have any cats.
Later, I tried writing essays about life. I’m an optimistic person, but for some reason my essays came out too serious or worse, preachy. Who wants to read that?
I didn’t read a romance book until well into adult-hood. I was hooked, devoured hundreds in record time and read all heat levels (you know, for research). To this day, there are some where I still can’t figure out the acrobatics involved. But I digress. It was late 2012 when I started writing romance.
Do the characters all come to you at the same time or do some of them come to you as you write?
They all show up in quick succession and are all talking. I hear their conversations first. Soon after I begin to see them.
What kind of research do you do before you begin writing a book?
Geography — even though the locations are fictionalized. Weather. Trees. Flowers. Whatever jobs my characters have. Time period, if not current day. Funny little things too – like how long is an ambulance ride from point A to point B? What songs were on the radio that year? For Dragonfly Dance, I researched sculptures and the bronzing process – even though most of this detail didn’t make it in the book.
Do you see writing as a career?
Definitely! I do have a long-time career in the non-writing world too. But creating worlds, characters, stories is what I am passionate about.
What do you think about the current publishing market?
I am very appreciative that it is possible to share my writing with readers.
Do you read yourself and if so what is your favorite genre?
Romance. Romance. Romance.
Do you prefer to write in silence or with noise? Why?
Silence. I lose myself in it and have no sense of time. Sometimes I’ll look at the clock and – blink — it’s suddenly 3 hours later.
Do you write one book at a time or do you have several going at a time?
I have limited time, so I stay focused by working on one at a time.
Tell us about a favorite character from a book.
My favorite character is Hepzibah – from the children’s book Horrible Hepzibah by Edna Mitchell Preston. That’s probably not what you expected to hear. She’s deliciously mean to her nemesis, whose name is Beautiful Vanilla. Not all girls are sugar and spice.
A day in the life of the author?
I have a demanding technical job so a typical day starts early. After work, I sometimes row. On weekday evenings I focus on writerly tasks like promotion, creating graphics, social media or outlining. I write on Saturdays and Sundays. It’s pretty much work, row, write, eat, sleep, repeat. That’s not a martyr thing. I’ve become a minimalist with my time. There is only so much we can accomplish, so I prioritize what means the most.
Advice they would give new authors?
Listen to your intuition. It’s easy to get overwhelmed with everyone else’s advice and opinions. Trust yourself and your goals.
What are they currently reading?
I recently read The Bromance Book Club by Lyssa Kay Adams and loved it.
What is your writing Kryptonite?
Emotional stress, such as managing a family member’s serious illness, unemployment or other financial struggles. It’s very hard to drum up creativity when exhausted and/or worried.
Do you try more to be original or to deliver to readers what they want?
I’d say a little of both. I’m writing stories and characters I want to share, but hopefully in a way that is universal and appealing.
What’s the most difficult thing about writing characters from the opposite sex?
I researched writing male characters and took writing classes on the topic. I try to remember that men don’t ask a lot of questions, they make statements. I have a male beta reader, among others, who keeps me honest (and chuckling) with comments like: “Wait, what about his blue balls?” and “He should say f**k more.”
Do you believe in writer’s block?
Not especially, but we all have slumps where we are uninspired. Slumps affect everything, including writing.
Mercy Mountain Series Book 1
by Becca Maxton
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Some things are worth the wait…
Ben Mannis never got to be young, wild, and free. Both his parents died when he was 20, leaving him a ranch to run and younger siblings to raise. Now 42, life—and love—seems to have passed him by. Not that he’s complaining, the town is his family and he’s been too busy to fret a missing love-life. When he’s asked by the newspaper editor to show the Gazette’s owner around the local area for a few days, Ben is happy to oblige. Little does he know everything he’s missed out on is arriving wrapped in one sophisticated leggy, blonde package.
Catherine Kendall wants to live her creative dream and not the dictated life her father has assigned. As the only child, she’s been groomed to run the family publishing empire. Trouble is, she hates the news business, hates the city, and longs to live near mountains and indulge in becoming a sculptor. So, while the town thinks she’s come to inspect the Gazette, she’s really there on a frustrated dare her father tossed out—prove herself an artist or return to Kendall Publishing and never speak of her silly ambitions again. The mountains are just what she needed to spark her passion. Turns out, so is the handsome rancher acting as tour guide.
Can two late-bloomers turn a sexy fling into true love, or has their time passed them by?
Becca Maxton is a contemporary romance author. She writes sensuous (dare say, steamy) and encouraging stories about rocky road detours leading to resilience and romance. Her characters are brave women and men facing challenges together and finding love.
Becca is a member of Romance Writers of America, Colorado Romance Writers and the best critique group of writer friends ever. She lives in Northern Colorado with her husband and son.
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