I was privileged to meet Connie Mason in 2006, the year my debut novel came out. She graciously gave me a cover quote for it and a beautiful friendship was born. Recently, Connie and I exchanged emails so I could spotlight her and her newest book, LORD OF DEVIL ISLE here. There's even a short excerpt! Enjoy!
Emily: So, Connie, you've been writing for a good long while and have over 50 titles to your credit. You're a New York Times bestseller and were featured on the news program 48 Hours. Why do you think your writing career has been so long and successful?
Connie: I attribute my long writing career with connecting with my readers. I write what they want to read, what I like to read myself. I try to keep my writing fresh by mixing up the time frame and countries in which I write.
Emily: Now authors are encouraged to "brand" themselves by delivering a recognizable type of story with each book. What makes up the Connie Mason brand?
Connie: Each of my stories has elements of action, adventure, suspense, sensuality, and above all, romance.
Emily: I'm always curious about how other writers pull together the beast that is the novel. What is your writing process? Do you plan your stories out in advance or just write them as they come to you?
Connie: I always have a sense of where I'm going with a story and the characters, but even if I write a synopsis or outline, I never follow it. I write with my gut.
Emily: I usually say no one is born knowing how to write a novel, but it sounds like you were! You have traveled extensively and it certainly shows in your body of work. I think Antarctica might be the only continent that hasn't been the setting for one of your stories. But out of all the places you've been, what was your favorite trip?
Connie: I have visited or lived in every European and Scandinavian country, Eastern Europe and Russia, Spain, Portugal and Africa and Greece. I have also visited several Asian countries and lived three years in Thailand. It's difficult to pick out one country over another because there is so much to admire about each of them. But because of the difference in culture and religion, I'd have to say Thailand and Morocco.
Emily: My readers would love to know a bit more about you. Please share anything you'd like about your personal life--kids, grandkids, hobbies, etc.
Connie: I have three grown children, nine grandchildren, all grown except a twelve year old grandson, and two adorable great-grandchildren, ages 3 and 18 months. As many of you know, I lost my husband of 57 years two years ago. It was a shock which I am still coping with. As for hobbies, I take tai chi classes twice a week and read during my spare time.
Emily: I'm so sorry for your loss. I hope your kids and grandkids live close by.
I just have to ask, what's next after LORD OF DEVIL ISLE comes out April 27th--OMGosh, that's today!!!! (I'll have to sneak out of RT and run to the nearest bookstore for my copy!)
Connie: Thanks, Emily. This coming November, I'm taking my readers to Scotland with SINS OF THE HIGHLANDER. "Mad Rob" MacLaren abducts his enemy's bride at the altar, but never expected to fall under the lass's spell himself. It's a tale of honor, redemption and, of course, love.
Emily: Oh, yummy! Men in kilts! Thanks for sharing with us, Connie and I hope you'll come back when SINS OF THE HIGHLANDER hits the bookstores. And now, for a sneak peak at LORD OF DEVIL ISLE . . .
"The post as my mistress has been vacated. Would you be interested in applying for the position?”
“Captain Scott!” She raised a hand to slap him, but he caught her wrist and held it fast.
“Miss Upshall, you are far too highly wrought,” he said silkily. He brought her wrist to his lips and brushed them across her pulse point, never taking his gaze from hers.
She tried to pull away, but his grip was firm and persistent. Like a bird charmed by a snake, she lost the will to resist and allowed him to continue to hold her hand. He stroked the back of it with his thumb. Tendrils of pleasure followed his touch, ebbing and flowing like a rising tide. She knew she shouldn’t allow it, but it felt amazingly good.
“In my experience,” he said softly, his voice a low rumble, like a lion’s purr, “when a woman protests this much, it means she hasn’t had the attention of a man recently and is in desperate need of it.”
That broke the spell.
“You conceited swine! Perhaps if you consorted with women other than barmaids and trollops, you’d recognize a lady’s revulsion when you see it."
His gaze dropped to her breasts, where the hard tips showed like a pair of raised buttons under the man’s shirt she was wearing.
“Believe me, Miss Upshall. I can read the signals you’re sending, and revulsion is not in evidence.”
Oh! I love it when a man sees through a woman's not-so-honest protest! Thanks for visiting with me and my readers today, Connie. I can't wait to read LORD OF DEVIL ISLE. Here's the buy link!
Leave a comment or question for Connie for a chance to win a title from Connie's backlist!
Such a wonderful treat to know there's a new Connie Mason book in the world. I remember knowing I'd found something special back when I first read My Lady Vixen.
Connnie, what would you say is the best advice for authors whose natural bent takes them to different eras and settings?
Thanks Connie for stopping by Emily's blog. I can't wait for Lord of Devil Isle. I'm also really excited about your new Viking romance novel due out next year. It's getting hard to find Viking romance novels. I find them mostly now in Erotic Romance(not that that's a bad thing).
Do you have any say in your book covers? Do you get to pick the male models?
Great post! I have not read a Connie Mason book in years! Wonderful interview! I will be watching for this book because I want to read it! Connie what types of books do you read mostly?
Connie, congratulations on your release! 50 titles is an amazing accomplishment. Do you write a pretty clean first draft, or are you a big fan of heavy revisions?
I think I just fangirled all over myself. Connie, you've been a staple in my library for a long time. My mother's too. She lost her sight to cataracts and had to stop reading, but she's having her surgery this month and hopefully, she'll be nose deep in romance again. A new book from you is just the thing I'll get her to celebrate. *g*
Your work has contributed greatly to my love of the genre and my formative romance years. *laughs*
I'm so very sorry for your loss. I don't know what I'd do without my hero.
All the best, doll! I'm butterflies and excitement for LORD OF DEVIL ISLE.
Great interview! And a new-to-me author to check out! Yea! :-)
Hi Connie, congrats on LoDI! Who among your heroines is most like you?
Hi Everybody! I don't think Connie gets online very often other than to answer email. I'll send her an e with your questions and see if I can post her answers that way.
Lord Of Devil Isle sounds like a book I would really enjoy reading. I am ashamed to admit it would be my first Connie Mason book, but I know it won't be my last.
seriousreader at live dot com
Have been reading your books for years. You were among the first 4 or 5 romance writers I read, mostly your medieval stories. Have always enjoyed your books and this one should be no different.
Best of luck with release of your newest, LORD OF DEVIL ISLE.
Hi, Connie. Sorry I'm a day late, but my daughter was sick yesterday.
You are a new-to-me-author and your new release sounds fab!
I enjoyed this post, thank you for sharing Connie with us, Emily.
I'm late as well but Connie it's a pleasure meeting you here. I have been a fan for years. I love your stories so much. I can't wait to read Lord of Devil Isle and Sins of The Highlander because I am nutso over Scottish Highlanders. I'll be at Barnes and Noble tomorrow.
And my heart goes out to you over your loss. My prayers go out to you. My mom and Dad were married 55 years and she passed away suddenly and unexpectedly.He's still trying to cope.
Thanks Emily and Connie.
Just have to say that I have read over 35 of Connie's books and I just love them. I'm thrilled to see she has a new release coming out....and boy oh boy....can the lady write a hot love scene!!!
mitzihinkey at sbcglobal dot net
Connie responded to my email with her answers to the first 3 questions asked. Here's Connie:
I'm sorry I don't answer my email often enough. I didn't get read them in time to go to your blog. So I'll answer the questions now.
!. I'd say go for it. Follow your muse to whatever era and setting excites you. I never followed trends. I wrote what I felt excited about.
2. I read across the board but mostly historical romances. I love them and read just about everyone. I write a pretty clean manuscript. I don't try to second guess myself with heavy revisions. I write chapter by chapter, read through and correct it and go on to the next chapter. Then I read through the entire manuscript and do a last edit.
3. Why all my heroines are most like me.(: I like to think of myself as strong and confident, just like my heroines.
Thanks Emily and Connie...this was alot of fun.
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