Jen: Today we welcome Maureen A. Miller to Romancing the Book. Maureen, will you please share a short bio with us?
Maureen: Originally a programmer, I had to travel the country for business, and rather than read during those lengthy airport layovers I decided to write my own stories. One of those first stories turned into a Golden Heart finalist, so I thought, “hey, I might be onto something here.” Many rejection letters later my confidence wavered, but I never stopped writing. Three novels emerged out of those years, and now I am releasing my romantic thriller, Endless Night with Carina Press.
Maureen: Endless Night had me so caught up in the dark atmosphere of the book that I never even got to the point of staging an outline. The characters, Megan Summers and Jake Grogan are each desperate for something, and they are thrown together in a sinister mansion on the cliffs while a murderer stalks Megan. These characters and the haunting third character, Wakefield House, riveted me so that the book took on a life of its own.
You can purchase Endless Night at Carina Press’s eBookstore, or any online electronic book vendor (Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Kobo for example)
Maureen: You discover writing in your youth, that’s for sure. It is a matter of whether you cultivate it or not, and I sure tried to. As is the case with all aspiring writers, I have a drawer full of rejection letters, but I made a pact with myself. I promised myself that the day after I received a rejection letter I would immediately submit to two new places the following day. Carina Press was part of that promise, and to my delight, Angela James called me directly to say they wanted Endless Night. This will be my first traditionally published book.
Maureen: No, however my Father informs me that he would like a commission because he taught me how to read.
Maureen: I can conquer the world between the hours of 6:00am and noon…after that the skills start to wane. I’m definitely a morning person.
Maureen: I get excited when I receive edits. That must make me abnormal. I value the input of my editor and I can’t wait to start in on some of her suggestions. Every time I receive a round of edits it is like looking at the book with a completely fresh take, and I think, “Yeah, yeah! That’s going to be good.”
Maureen: I love the core element of romance−man and woman fall in love and live happily ever after. But there are so many variables to the genre. The obstacles these two people go through, the exotic locations they must visit to attain happiness. The villains that try to undermine them. You can do so much with just that nucleus. I love it!
Maureen: Actually, I always have some obscure reference in my head for either a character’s first or last names. In Endless Night, Megan Summers derives her last name from the Bionic Woman, and Jake Grogan derives his last name from an old New England Patriots quarterback to keep in spirit with the Maine setting.
Maureen: That’s always a tough question. I think I can see Eliza Dushku as Megan. And perhaps Keanu Reeves as Jake. But I would be willing to personally interview candidates.
Maureen: I have always been a Kat Martin fan. Not that many years ago, I was a reader in complete awe at a book signing when Ms. Martin graciously offered to take a picture with me. I would like to think in that brief moment that some of her talent carried through the air and into my brain.
Maureen: What is this term you speak of? Free Time? I am an avid football fan, so I try to tackle as much as I can in advance so that I have free time on weekends in the fall.
Maureen: I am hard at work on my next novel, something I consider more of a romantic adventure.
Maureen: What external formulas do you enjoy when you read a romance? Outside the actual relationship, what factors do you like to see? Exotic settings? Danger? Interesting secondary characters?
Maureen: I will be giving away a free digital copy of Endless Night.
Jen: Readers, to enter the drawing for the ebook, you first need to leave a question or comment for Maureen. Then to finish your entry, you must either leave your email address in your comment or send a message to email@example.com. The winner will be chosen on Sunday, May 29th.