Name Wendy Vella
Where are you from
Auckland New Zealand
A little about your self `i.e, your education Family life etc
I’m the youngest of three, and they would say I’m spoilt, I say I’m well adjusted lol. We have wonderful parents who are still fit and strong, and I share a tight bond with my family, including several nieces and nephews. My first grandchild arrived this year and is an absolute joy. I have been married to my wonderful husband for thirty-one years.
I like to be active, so when I’m not sitting at my desk, I’m usually walking, cycling or at the gym.
Fiona: Tell us your latest news?
I have the third book in my contemporary series, Lake Howling – How Sweet It Its, coming out this month. It’s very exciting as Buster the hero has been a favorite of mine from book one.
The other exciting thing happening in my life is that myself and three of my writing friends have started a self-publishing podcast for beginners, we call ourselves the SPA girls http://www.spagirlspodcast.com/
Fiona: When and why did you begin writing?
I started writing when I was in my late teens because creative writing was something I always enjoyed at school and was good at. I read a lot, and after my first romance novel I decided to have a go a penning one myself. It’s terrible of course, and will never leave the closet it’s hidden in.
Fiona: When did you first consider yourself a writer?
My friends told me that I should do so after the first book I published, but I really didn’t think of myself that way until I left work earlier this year and started writing full-time.
Fiona: What inspired you to write your first book?
I just had a story inside me that needed to, be told so I started writing. I’m a total romantic, and writing about happy ever afters in my teens was awesome fun.
Fiona: Do you have a specific writing style?
My historical and contemporary novels all have a thread of humor and usually intrigue. I love a strong woman and a hero with a few flaws. There’s usually some suffering, but, of course, they all end up happy.
Fiona: How did you come up with the title?
Often I don’t because I’m terrible at it. I’m part of a wonderful critique group, and usually we do it together.
Fiona: Is there a message in your novel that you want readers to grasp?
Not really, I just want them to laugh, sigh a bit at the romance and enjoy escaping from everday life for a while. I get a lot of pleasure out of knowing someone somewhere may be reading one of my books and it’s making them smile.
Fiona: How much of the book is realistic?
In my historical romance’s I make events and facts that happened in the Regency era as accurate as I possibly can because I think that’s vital. Having said that I have got a few things wrong and readers have kindly pointed that out to me.
Fiona: Are experiences based on someone you know, or events in your own life?
Not consciously, but I’m aware that in my contemporary series some of the people in there are like my children and their friends, and often the dialogue too.
Fiona: What books have most influenced your life most? a mentor?
Georgette Heyer – These Old Shades was my first historical romance novel, and I’ve never forgotten it.
Julia Quinn – The Bridgerton’s and Stephanie Laurens – The Cynster Series are books I’ve read and re-read many times, and were probably my first foray into that type of reading. They made me aware of the writing style I wanted to emulate.
I love Eloisa James and Lisa Kleypas. I was lucky enough to meet Eloisa James at the Romance Writers of New Zealand conference. She, like many successful authors, is more than happy to share the wealth of information they have, with aspiring authors.
Fiona: What book are you reading now?
Susan Elizabeth Phillips – Natural Born Charmer.
Fiona: Are there any new authors that have grasped your interest?
There are so many I wouldn’t know where to start. That’s the amazing thing about ebooks, I’ve been introduced to so many new voices.
Fiona: What are your current projects?
I have the second historical romance in the Lords Of Night Street Series – Lord Valiant coming out in November. I’m in a boxed set with other authors also, with another contemporary book.
As for what am I writing. Currently I’m working on book #5 of the Langley Sisters Series, and another contemporary that will be the start of a new series.
Fiona: Name one entity that you feel supported you outside of family members.
Romance Writers of New Zealand
Fiona: Do you see writing as a career?
Definitely, and I’m humbled to be doing something I love.
Fiona: If you had to do it all over again, would you change anything in your latest book?
No, I like my books as they are. Sure, there may be a few editing issues in the earlier ones, that I’m slowly working through those, but I still love the stories, so no I wouldn’t change anything.
Fiona: Do you recall how your interest in writing originated?
It came about through reading from what I remember, and it’s just always been something that I wanted to one day do.
Fiona: Can you share a little of your current work with us?
Lord Valiant – Book #2 Lords Of Night Street
Marcus sat in his office and drank brandy, staring at the toes of his boots, which he had propped on his desk. When he was sure his houseguests were settled for the night, he would find his bed, but not before. He had no wish to see Charlotte again so soon.
Tomorrow he would meet with his friends at Night Street, and they would discuss what had transpired this evening. They would dig deeper into who was selling young women as sex slaves, and he would discuss the Duke of Marlton and the possibility that he could be behind Charlotte’s abduction and tonight’s fire. In that at least, he could help her. No woman deserved to live in constant fear, and when Marcus walked away from her, he wanted to do so knowing she would be safe to live her life as she chose.
“Dear God, I pray she chooses a less perilous lifestyle,” he said, regaining his feet and heading for his bed. “Are all our guests settled, Chadley?” His butler was waiting for him.
“We have a slight problem, I’m afraid. I had the terrace room prepared on the third floor for Miss Radley. However, she has insisted on sleeping in the servants’ quarters, but there is no bed available. Therefore, she has decided to sleep on the floor in the maids’ room.”
And just like that, his hard-won calm had gone. Marcus stalked to the servants’ stairs and climbed until he’d reached their floor. Stomping down the hall, he located the maids’ quarters simply by following Charlotte’s voice.
“No, really, I shall be just fine on the floor, Miss Hopkins.”
Reaching the door, he knocked.
“Pardon the intrusion,” he said to the wide-eyed maid who opened it. Entering the room, he nodded to the three other women and then glared at the one on the floor. “I shall not disturb you for long.” Walking to where Charlotte lay in a nest of blankets, he bent at the knees, picked her up, and then left the room.
“Put me down, I was to sleep there!” she said as he headed for the stairs and started to climb.
“God’s blood, woman, you test my patience,” Marcus snarled.
“I don’t see why.”
She was close enough so that all he’d have to do was turn his head and he could kiss her, so he kept his eyes forward.
“You are not going to sleep on the floor in my servants’ rooms when there are plenty of warm, soft beds in the rest of the house.”
“But I should sleep in the servants’ quarters,” she insisted. “It is the right thing to do.”
Reaching her room, he juggled her about in his arms until he could twist the door handle, and walked inside. A fire burned, a bath had been drawn, and a tray of food awaited her.
“Why,” he said, lowering her down his body and biting back a groan as he felt her soft unbound curves beneath, “should you sleep in the servants’ quarters?”
She bit her lip as she thought about that. “I am a baseborn woman who has a house that takes in prostitutes. My life is spent among those who do not frequent your world. I am not the kind of woman who should sleep in such a room.” She looked around her at the soft cream walls and deep burgundy bedcovers and curtains.
“You are worth more than any woman I know.” Marcus gave up the fight then and touched her. Slipping his fingers beneath her hair, his hand circled her neck. “You are every inch a lady of integrity and honor, and so beautiful you make me ache to kiss you.”
“Oh… I don’t know how to respond to that, my lord,” she said, moving in to his body.
“Marcus,” he whispered against her lips. “I want to hear my name on your lips.”
“Marcus,” she sighed, and he was lost. He wanted this woman so much his body shook with need.
Fiona: Is there anything you find particularly challenging in your writing?
I’m terrible at editing. I can never see faults in my work, and so I rely on others to find them for me. I’ve been let down a time or two, but that’s all part of the learning curve.
Fiona: Who is your favorite author and what is it that really strikes you about their work?
That’s hard because I have three favorites, but if I had to pick one I’d probably go with Lisa Kleypas because she writes both contemporary and historical romance like me. I love the humor that runs through her books and her characters are always a bit different. She has a way of grabbing her readers from the opening page and I can honestly say I’ve never read a book of hers that I didn’t enjoy. My favorites are the Hathaway and Wallflowers series’.
Fiona: Do you have to travel much concerning your book(s)?
I went to the UK for Christmas last year and did a great deal of research there for my historical novels, and that was amazing. I went to places I’d been writing about for years!
I will be heading to San Diego in July 2016 for the Romance Writers of America conference, and to the New Zealand and possibly Australian one’s as well.
Fiona: Who designed the covers?
Melody Simmons from Ebook indie covers and Seductive Designs.
Fiona: What was the hardest part of writing your book?
The first draft always runs smooth for me as I’m quite a quick writer, but the second and third are the hardest. By the time I’ve finished my final edit, I’ve probably run through it at least ten times and I usually hate the book by then lol.
Fiona: Did you learn anything from writing your book and what was it?
I learned to keep writing because that’s how you develop your skill as a writer. Strengthen the writing muscle, just as you would when you want to develop any muscle in the body.
Fiona: Do you have any advice for other writers?
I really struggled to finish my first book, so the best piece of advice I received was from the wonderful historical romance writer Anne Gracie. She told me to start at the beginning and don’t stop until the end. That may sound simple, but often you tend to go back and edit and re-read what you’ve done the day before, or you get side-tracked by researching something. So she told me that if something blocked me while I was writing, put in capital letters what it is, then move on. This is now how I write. If I need to research something, I write FOOD NEEDED HERE or whatever, and carry on. The second draft is when I tidy that stuff up.
Fiona: Do you have anything specific that you want to say to your readers?
It means so much to me that someone else loves my work. Thanks for reading!
Fiona: Do you remember the first book you read?
I think probably Winnie The Pooh.
Fiona: What makes you laugh/cry?
My family make me do both. A good book or movie. Sad things on the news.
Fiona: Is there one person pass or present you would meet and why?
Winston Churchill has always intrigued me. He wrote and said some powerful things in his time.
Fiona: What do you want written on your head stone and why?
Fuel your mind by reading. Live, love and laugh, you only get one shot at it.
Fiona: Other than writing do you have any hobbies ?
I belong to a road cycling club, and I enjoy that. I use to sing in a band that I also loved, but don’t get time for now.
Fiona: What TV shows/films do you enjoy watching?
I love the blacklist and Heroes on TV. My favorite film is probably the 2007 version of Jane Austen’s, Persuasion.
Fiona: Favorite foods / Colors/ Music
French Fries/Dark Green/Sam Smith – Stay With Me
Fiona: If you were not a writer what else would you like to have done?
I would have been a police officer. I was ready to join up when I got injured, and then writing took over.
Fiona: Do you have a blog/website? If so what is it?
Amazon Authors Page http://www.amazon.com/Wendy-Vella/e/B00CBMSSJU