Thursday, November 17, 2011

Guest Author Interview - Margaret Mallory

Margaret Mallory has stopped by today for an interview. We welcome the opportunity to learn more about you and your new release.

Let's get started....
What is your favorite thing to do when you are not writing?

My favorite things to do are reading and watching movies. Unfortunately, I’ve found I have a lot less time to do either since I became an author. When I can get away, I love to hike or travel with my family.

What books are sitting in your TBR pile right now?

The Viper by Monica McCarty, In Bed with a Highlander by Maya Banks, The Heir by Grace Burrowes, Taken by the Prince by Christina Dodd, Midnight’s Wild Passion by Anna Campbell, Lord Langley is Back in Town by Elizabeth Boyle, and Tempted by Fate by Kate Perry. That’s just one pile. I’m way behind on my reading!

How did you come up with the setting for THE RETURN OF THE HIGHLANDERS series?

Since I write adventurous romances, I look for a period with a lot of conflict. I found exactly what I wanted in the year 1513, in the wake of the Scots’ disastrous loss to Henry VIII’s forces at the Battle of Flodden. My four Highland heroes return from France to find their king and chieftain dead, a rebellion brewing, factions fighting for control of the crown, and their clan in grave danger.

I still had to decide where in the Highlands my heroes would call home, which meant finding a clan for them. When I discovered that the first chieftain of the MacDonalds of Sleat had six sons by six different women and that the animosity among the six sons led to two generations of murder, I knew I had found my clan. Consequently, my heroes return home to the beautiful Isle of Skye.

Please share something you found most interesting or fun you did to research your book?

I was very lucky to be able to take a trip to Scotland with my daughter to do research for this series, and the trip was amazing! (I have slide shows with photos from my trip on my website.) I turned in the manuscript for the first book, THE GUARDIAN, just before I got on the plane, but I knew I would have the opportunity to make changes if I found th
at the places in the book did not look like I had imagined them.

Seeing the ruins of “my” clan’s castles that I was using in my books was so incredible I wanted to weep. The Isle of Skye was gorgeous, and I kept finding new places I wanted to put in my books.

I had not planned to include Edinburgh in any of the books. After exploring Edinburgh Castle and going on an underground tour of medieval Edinburgh, I decided I had to send the hero and heroine of THE SINNER on a journey there. Thanks to my trip, my hero gets tossed into a cell in the bowels of Edinburgh Castle by the Duke of Albany. Such fun!

Action adventure or romantic comedy? What is your favorite movie lately?

I’ve seen one of each kind lately that I’d happily see a second time. I absolutely LOVED the young heroine in Hanna, a futuristic action-drama. (Eric Bana, who plays Hanna’s father, was a bonus.) I laughed my head off watching Bridesmaids. These two movies couldn’t be more different, but I enjoyed them both.

I’d love to respond to comments or questions! I’ll give a signed copy of THE GUARDIAN, Book of THE RETURN OF THE HIGHLANDERS, to one of the commenters. Thanks for having me as a guest, Lucy!


Debby said...

I love your books. Do you do a lot of traveling for research?
debby236 at gmail dot com

Virginia said...

Great interview! I love your books. I would like to know it you ever base any of your books on things that has happen to you in real life?

Lorna said...

So is this book going to be part of a series? I love reading about one character and then following the related characters in another book (and catching up on what has happened with the first character). When you went to Scotland, did you rent a car or go with a tour company? I'm looking forward to reading your new book :-)

Margaret Mallory said...

Thanks so much for the compliments on my books!
I'll answer the last question first. THE SINNER is the 2nd in a 4-book series, THE RETURN OF THE HIGHLANDERS. Each book stands alone, but it's probably more fun to read them in order. The four heroes are in each others' books, and I'm getting a lot of positive comments from readers about that. I'm enjoying that aspect b/c I don't have to let go of characters I've become attached to so soon!


Margaret Mallory said...

Virginia, there's a bit of my dad in all my heroes. I was lucky to grow up with a father who has so many heroic qualities. In this book, though, my hero Alex got some of his storytelling magic and charm from my dad. My father, however, was NOT a womanizer. ;)

catslady said...

Oh, I'm one of those readers who loves anything Highlander. (I also have The Viper and Maya's books in my tbr pile). This series sounds wonderful! What do you have coming up for the future? More Highlanders? And how much say do you have in your covers - they are gorgeous!

Margaret Mallory said...

In response to the travel questions, I planned my trip to Scotland with all 4 books in the series in mind. It was really wonderful that my daughter had just graduated from college and could go with me. (Hubby & son had to stay home.) We had an amazing trip, and it gave me so many ideas for my books!
Lorna, we rented a car. I wanted to be able to go down back roads to ruined castles that I was putting in the books. :)

Laurie Ryan said...

I can't imagine getting to visit the places you've used for settings in your stories. How cool is that? Hmmm, maybe I need to set a story in Australia. Then I'd have an excuse to go visit. Then again, who needs an excuse? lol
I don't need to be entered in your drawing. I already have a copy of The Sinner and am enjoying it a LOT. I just wanted to stop by and say hi!

Rose said...

Cool! I'd love to read this book.
andantespirit08 at gmail dot com

Sheree said...

I love the covers for this series; they are so hot!

Do you enjoy watching movies set in Scotland as well?

ironss [at] gmail [dot] com

marybelle said...

It makes perfect sense to me, I had not thought about it before, that to have adventurous romances you need some form of conflict. So, choosing a period in history is all important. I wonder if you had several you were considering?

Margaret Mallory said...

Laurie, thanks for commenting. :)

Sheree, I love to watch movies set in Scotland. (Ireland, too.)

Scottish history is full of conflict, so I had plenty of choices, Marybelle. I prefer to have my heroes swinging swords rather than shooting guns, so that helped me narrow the time period. I wanted to set it pre-Reformation, too, when the old Celtic traditions were still very strong.


Lorna said...

Thanks for telling me this is book number 2! I'll be sure to pick them both up so I don't miss anything :-)