Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Wild Roses Blog Tour: Interview with Caroline Clemmons

It's time to kick off the Wild Roses Blog Tour! Today I'm guest blogging at paranormal writer Lilly Gayle's blog. But first I'm pleased to host my guest, Texan romance author Caroline Clemmons.

Caroline's talents extend to several subgenres, including my favorite, paranormal, as well as historical and contemporary. Her titles include Out of the Blue, Long Way Home, a novella in Northern Roses and Southern Belles, plus The Texan's Irish Bride due out September 3rd, and the upcoming Home Sweet Texas Home. All are from The Wild Rose Press.

To start off the interview, I asked Caroline to give us an idea what attracted her to writing and what life is like for her when she's not chained to her keyboard.



Caroline Clemmons:
As long as I can remember, I've made up adventures. Okay, I admit the early creative stories featured me riding the range with Roy Rogers and Dale Evans and saving the West. What a disappointment to learn that Roy was exclusively committed to Dale! Eventually, my best friend from across the street and I decided to become better detectives than Nancy Drew. We drove our parents and neighbors crazy sticking our pert little noses where they didn't belong. About that time I started writing down my adventures, but mostly I was a reader. Not until I read Nora Roberts' early novels did I decide to create my own romance manuscripts. I still read Nora's books—as well as those of countless other authors—but now I write full time.

My Hero and I live on a small bit of acreage in the ranching and horse country of North Central Texas. Our two daughters are grown, and supportive of my writing. Living with Hero and me now are Webster, our sweet black Shih Tzu, and our two shorthaired cats: Sebastian, a black and white tuxedo who thinks he's our watchcat; and Bailey Erin, a shy apricot tabby. When I'm not writing, I love traveling with Hero, browsing antique malls, and digging into family history and genealogy. Writing about strong heroes and heroines who overcome amazing obstacles to forge a meaningful life together is my passion.

Interview continues below:
____________________

Win a PDF copy of the Civil War anthology Northern Roses and Southern
Belles
, or the paranormal time travel Out of the Blue from Caroline
Clemmons. To enter, leave a comment at the bottom of this post.
Then check back tomorrow to see if you're the lucky winner!

From Wild Roses Blog Tour Graphics
____________________

Aileen Harkwood: Do you like to set your stories where you live, or someplace far away?

CC: Except for one novella, the major portion all of my books take place in Texas, even if part of the book is set elsewhere. Since I have lived in Texas most of my life, my knowledge of this setting is greater than elsewhere. You’ve heard “Write what you know.” Also, Texas has a diverse terrain, so I can choose piney woods, desert, prairies, mountains, or coast and still be in Texas. I’d love to set a book in Ireland or Scotland, but haven’t yet. No particular reason to set one there, except that I love both countries as well as England and Wales. For now, I’m sticking to Texas.

AH: Romance tends to focus description primarily on the hero and heroine and their feelings, while glossing over other types of description. How important are the other types of description to you, and how do you use them to not simply decorate a story but build it?

CC: Very good question, and one I’ve not heard before. I want readers to form a clear picture of the secondary characters and the setting. It’s important to me to “set” the story and make the characters three-dimensional.

AH: Do you “cast” the roles in your books with film stars or other people you’ve seen?

CC: No, the people are in my head and don’t resemble any living person. The heroes always have the good qualities of my husband and some of his mannerisms, but that’s as close as I come to using real people in my books.

AH: How important is daydreaming to the creation of your stories? Are you all business when you write? Or do you like to let your mind wander until it finds the narrative thread?

CC: I have a cartoon I’ve saved of the character Shoe from the Sunday funnies. Several panels show him with his feet up on his desk staring into the air. Someone comes up to him and he yells, “Can’t you see I’m writing?” That’s the way I am when I’m plotting. I may not always be at the computer, but I’m always thinking of my characters and story and what they should do next and how they should do it. Once I get started writing, though, I’m all business so I can get the words down.

AH: Paper books or eBooks? Where do you think the future is headed? Say, three, five, ten years from now?

CC: I hope there’s a future for both. E-books are so much more sensible—saves the trees and shipping costs. But there are some books I want in tangible form so I can save them on a shelf to reread.

AH: Are writing sex scenes hard or easy for you? What advice can you offer pre-pubbed writers who might find writing them intimidating?

CC: Writing sex scenes is the worst part of the book for me. I know many people love that part of writing, but it seems intrusive to me. I’d rather just close the bedroom door and let readers imagine what’s going on, but that’s not what sells books. To unpubbed, I’d suggest reading some best selling authors and see how each handles sex scenes, then choose a style that’s suited to his or her characters.

AH: What’s your favorite guilty pleasure? How do you reward yourself?

CC: With chocolate and Dr Pepper. Great combination that nudges the muse.

____________________

Visit Caroline on the web at: http://carolineclemmons.com, and check back on August 11, when my guest will be Lauri Robinson, author of Wish Craft and Boot Hill Bride.

13 comments:

  1. They should make Dr. Pepper chocolate!!

    What a beautiful cover for The Texan's Irish Bride. I love Texas historicals. Looking forward to reading it.

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  2. Hi, Caroline! Don't include me in the drawing, since I already have both books. I just wanted to lend my support and say what a great read Out of the Blue is! I'm almost finished and am looking forward to your next release!

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  3. I really enjoyed the interview!! Both of your books look very good!! I also love the cover of The Texan's Irish Bride, in fact all the ones I see are very eye catching!!

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  4. Lynnette HallbergAugust 4, 2010 at 1:07 PM

    The cover for Northern Roses and Southern Belles has to be one of the most beautiful I've ever seen. And doesn't Nora just make you want to write, write, write?!? Seeing her again at confernce was awesome!

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  5. Showing some wild rose blog tour love. Great interview, Caroline.

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  6. Wonderful interview - I'm glad I stopped by! : )
    When my daughter is asleep, I'm going to put my feet up and follow the tour : )
    See you all there!

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  7. Hi Caroline,
    Great interview. Roy Rogers I just loved him but Dale Evans, frankly I didn't like her much because she had Roy and I didn't. Ooh and chocolate, now you are talking my language.

    Regards
    Margaret

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  8. I also grew up with westerns and love Roy Rogers.
    Those were the good old days.

    lorettaC
    lbcanton@verizon.net

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  9. CAROLINE--You know I have the anthology--that's how I met you. I read your story in it and thought, wow, she is so good. Who is she? And remember--I e-mailed you to tell you how I loved your writing. I'm now waiting for The Texan's Irish Bride, and I'll invite you to my blog. Congratulations! Celia

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  10. Caroline,
    Great blog. Beautiful covers. You know I love your stories. :-) I love that you mentioned your cats and their names. ;-) My parrot is my watch bird, as you probably know already, my cat keeps me company while I write, usually behind me on the table where she lounges when not tapping me on the shoulder for more food, and my papillon mix watches everything from underneath the dining table nearby. They keep me company while I'm writing. Doctor Pepper? Hmm. Definitely chocolate, and iced decaf French Roast.
    Jeanmarie

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  11. Two very good genres to write in, Caroline! Congratulations. :)

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  12. Thanks to all of you who commented. Thanks for stopping by to keep me company.

    The cover artist for all of my books from The Wild Rose Press is Nicola Martinez. She's very talented.

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  13. HI Ladies,

    Civil War stories are my favorites. I love the idea of an anthology full of them! Sounds like my kind of read.

    Congrats on your upcoming release as well!

    And I agree, the cover artists at TWRP are THE best.

    debrastjohn08@yahoo.com

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