Sarah: Today we are happy to welcome Linda LaRoque as Sarah’s guest at Romancing the Book. Linda, please tell us a little bit about yourself.
Linda: I taught school in Texas for thirty years before retiring. I’ve loved to read for as long as I can remember. I began writing in the early 90s but it wasn’t until 2007 my first book was published. My husband and I like to travel and our trips make great fodder for my blog. One of our favorite trips is Route 66. Except for a few small parts, we’ve traveled the entire Mother Road from the Chicago area to Santa Monica Pier in California. I’d loved to have seen it back in the 1930s.
I can be found at
Sarah: What made you want to become an author?
Linda: One summer I read a romance that left me a little disappointed. I made a comment to my husband that writing couldn’t be that hard and that I bet I could write one. Of course he said, “Well, why don’t you?” Haha, was I ever wrong. Writing is difficult work and I learned the hard way. There is nothing easy about it, but once I got started, no way was I going to give up. I went to conferences and workshops to learn as much as I could. And then joined critique groups. I probably rewrote When the Ocotillo Bloom seven times before receiving a contract.
Sarah: How do you decide on book titles?
Linda: Titles are hard. Sometimes while writing a book a significant line I’ve written will jump out at me as a possible title. At other times, a title will come early in the story and reflect the theme of the book.
Sarah: Has writer’s block ever been a problem for you and if yes, how did you move past it?
Linda: Writer’s block hasn’t been a big issue for me though there have been times where plot issues have stumped me. Usually if I let a story perk, ideas will evolve.
Sarah: Several of your books involve time travel. Will you share with us what appeals to you about time travel?
Linda: I’ve always loved history and have wondered what it would be like to live in a past time period. We can read books and imagine what life would be like in other periods, but it’s not the same. Seeing for ourselves and putting things in perspective can be eye openers. We once visited Williamsburg, VA during their Thanksgiving reenactments. I was horrified to see the conditions of their homes, how cold and small they were with dirt floors. And it was very cold that year. After feeling the bite of the wind, seeing women going about their chores with only a woolen shawl over their dresses, and viewing the straw strewn floor in the loft where the family slept, I decided early Jamestown was a place I’d want to avoid visiting in the past.
Some things that fascinate me are the cultural mores, the clothing styles, homes, ways of preserving and cooking food–really just everything!
Sarah: If you could travel to any time and/or place in the world, where would you go and why?
Linda: I have to say it would be during the nineteenth century in the old west, preferably Texas, New Mexico, or Colorado. Definitely after the Civil War as the war depresses me.