Please join Novels Alive and Be My Bard in giving a warm welcome to this week’s guest for “10 Questions With…” interview segment—New York Times and USA Today Bestselling Author—the fabulously creative AMELIA GREY!
We’ve all pondered the age old question of which came first the CHICKEN or the EGG? As a writer, when creating a new story, which tends to come first for you—the CHARACTERS or the PLOT?
I’ve actually worked both ways in my twenty-books. I do love it when a character comes to me first and then I have to build the plot around her or him. But sometimes a scene will pop into my mind and I’ll think, “Oh that seems like fun.” For instance, in my book A TASTE OF TEMPTATION, my April re-issue, I knew I wanted the hero to first meet the heroine in his bedchamber. In order to do that, I had to find a darn good reason for her to be there. So I opened with the heroine and her zany aunt going to Lord Dugdale’s house for a party. When they walk into the house the aunt insists she feels the presence of a ghost in the house and she intends to find it. Naturally, Olivia has to help her aunt. And it just so happens Olivia is searching the hero’s bedroom when he walks in. Now, that said, this book is not a “ghost” story. It is simply a vehicle that moves the story along.
It’s inevitable that small bits and pieces of a writer’s own personality will make their way into the characters they create. But if you had to write yourself into one of your books, would your character most likely be the hero/heroine, the steadfast best friend, the comedy relief or the villainous mastermind?
I am the heroine in all my books, whether I write some my own traits, or the traits I wish I had, or the traits I wish I didn’t have. For instance, I am not a very brave person but my heroines are always very brave and self-confident.
Speaking of villains…do you prefer writing characters that are clearly evil from the second they appear on the page or the surprise villain that no one would ever expect?
Most of my books are light-hearted, fun, and humorous. I don’t think I’ve ever written a truly evil person. If I did, I think the surprise would be the way I would go—because I love surprises!
If you had the power to step inside the pages of any book for 24 hours, which one would you choose and why?
Probably GONE WITH THE WIND so I could ask Scarlett, “What exactly is it that you see in Ashley Wilkes?”
If you could use that same power to jump through the screen into the world of your favorite television show or movie, which would it be and why?
Downton Abby and be the Dowager Lady Grantham. I love her one liners, and I would love to have her wit and to be able to say those kinds of things to someone—if just for a day. She is the star of the show as far as I’m concerned.
Over the last few years, books of an erotic nature or with taboo subject matter have become more acceptable—even popular—in the mainstream marketplace. How, if at all, has this change affected the way that you write your own “love scenes”?
Not at all. I have always only written what is comfortable for me and what I feel fits my story.
There was once a time when authors had to rely almost solely on mainstream media like newspapers and magazines to find reviews written on their latest book. Now that the internet has made it possible for anyone with a keyboard to become an armchair critic, has the sheer number of reviews available for your books made it easier or harder to deal with criticism?
After twenty-seven books, I have had my share of fabulous reviews that I wanted to plaster all over my walls so I could read them every day and reviews that have threatened to crush my soul. Up until a couple of years ago, I read every one I could find. Now, I have learned not to go looking for reviews. If a reviewer is kind enough or my editor sends me one, I’ll read it. Otherwise, it simply makes my writing life easier not to read them and I’m all for easy these days.
Many authors have branched out into multiple genres over the years. Is there a particular genre of fiction that you have always wanted to tackle but, haven’t tried yet?
Not at all. I am a romance kind of girl. I love what I write and I write what I love. I have never wanted to write anything but romance.
If you could choose one historical/contemporary romance from your own or another author’s library of work to be made into a feature film which would it be and why?
It would be my book THE DUKE IN MY BED which is coming out January 2015 from St. Martins. The hero is a bad boy from start to finish. He’s the only child of two only children so he knows nothing about home life or siblings. I gave him a heroine who has 4 younger sisters and for the first time in his life he is out of his depth. He not only learns about falling in love, but he also learns lessons in sharing, giving, and accepting. The book is filled with humor as the duke learns to be a brother as well as the heroine’s lover.
Tell us a little bit about the project you are working on now or share something about your newest or upcoming release(s).
I am currently finishing my second book in my Heirs’ Club of Scoundrels trilogy. The first book, THE DUKE IN MY BED will be out January 2015. We haven’t settled on a title for the 2nd book but I would love to be invited back to talk about it and the last book of the series when the first one comes out.
Thank you for having me on this fabulous site today. If you want to know more about me and my books please like me at Facebook.com/AmeliaGreyBooks, email me at firstname.lastname@example.org or find me at ameliagrey.com.
Amelia has won the coveted Romantic Times award for Love and Laughter, the prestigious Maggie award for best historical and Affaire de Coeur’s best American historical award. She has been a finalist for the Golden Heart and the Holt Medallion awards which are given by Romance Writers of America and numerous other awards. Her books have been sold to many countries in Europe, Russia and China.