Hello and welcome to my blog, Author Interviews. My name is Fiona Mcvie.
Thanks for inviting me, Fiona!
Let’s get you introduced to everyone, shall we? Tell us your name. What is your age?
Ally Broadfield, and I’m in the middle of my fifth decade.
Fiona: Where are you from?
Originally, Suttons Bay, Michigan, but I’ve also lived in Ohio, Washington, D.C., Virginia, and now, Dallas, Texas.
Fiona: A little about your self (ie, your education, family life, etc.).
I have degrees in International Affairs and History from The George Washington University, both of which have come in handy with my writing. I have a husband, three kids, four dogs, two cats, three lizards, two snakes, and a rabbit. As you might have guessed, there’s never a dull moment at my house.
Fiona: Tell us your latest news.
The third book in my How To trilogy, How to Bewilder a Lord, is releasing on June 5th.
Fiona: When and why did you begin writing?
I was a librarian at a small, private elementary school, and one day after I’d read and reviewed a book, I thought, I could do that. So I did (but it did take a few years before I wrote something that was worthy of publication).
Fiona: When did you first consider yourself a writer?
When I sold my first book, which was in July of 2012.
Fiona: What inspired you to write your first book?
I entered a contest for Jane Austen inspired short stories, and though I didn’t win, I got some positive comments from other writers and bloggers that inspired me to keep going. That short story eventually turned into my first book, Just a Kiss.
Fiona: How did you come up with the title?
Sadly, I don’t remember. I like for all of the books in a series to have titles that tie together, but I don’t really have a specific process. Eventually, the titles just come to me.
Fiona: Do you have a specific writing style? Is there anything about your style or genre that you find particularly challenging?
The hardest thing for me is to make sure no modern words sneak into my books. I’m lucky that my publisher has good copyeditors and proofreaders, so we usually catch most of them.
Fiona: How much of the book is realistic and are experiences based on someone you know, or events in your own life?
Almost nothing is based on my own life, or that of anyone I know. Characters usually come to me first, or sometimes a specific conflict or dilemma, but most of my ideas come from my subconscious, probably due to a lifetime of reading.
Fiona: To craft your works, do you have to travel? Before or during the process?
I have not had to travel for my writing, but I would love to convince my husband that I need a trip to England. 😀
Fiona: Who designed the covers?
The fabulous cover artists at Entangled Publishing.
Fiona: Is there a message in your novel that you want readers to grasp?
I don’t deliberately put a message in my books. What I hope is that I provide an entertaining escape from everyday worries and stress, and that the characters will stay with readers long after they finish my books.
Fiona: Are there any new authors that have grasped your interest? Who is your favorite writer, and what is it about their work that really strikes you?
I don’t read a lot of contemporary romance, but I kept seeing posts on Facebook about The Hating Game by Sally Thorne, so I gave it a try and loved it. It’s new and fresh and fun. It is the author’s debut novel, and I’m looking forward to reading her next book.
My favorite writer is Madeleine L’Engel. I loved her books when I was in elementary school, and later on I was thrilled to discover that she also wrote books for teens and adults. My favorite of her books is A Ring of Endless Light. No matter what age she writes for, all of her books are full of real life problems and emotions.
Fiona: Outside of family members, name one entity that supported your commitment to become a published author.
This might seem like a strange answer, but it’s a writing organization, Romance Writers of America. Joining them was the best decision I ever made for my writing career. They have so many educational opportunity and modes of learning to help writers hone their craft and get published. I can’t recommend them enough.
Fiona: Do you see writing as a career?
Yes, though it’s difficult to make a living as a writer with all of the competition out there.
Fiona: If you had to do it all over again, would you change anything in your latest book?
No. I do my best to make sure everything is the way I want it before I go through copy edits, proofreading, and galley edits. However, if I find a typo or other mistake after the fact, I would love to have the chance to fix that.
Fiona: Did you learn anything during the writing of your recent book?
Writing How to Bewilder a Lord was more challenging than I had expected. Lady Louisa and Lord Thornbrook, the hero and heroine, were featured prominently in the second book of the series, How to Bewitch an Earl, but their story didn’t start until more than a year after that book ended. The characters had grown and changed off the page, so it took a while for me to catch up and get them to start telling me their story.
Fiona: If your book was made into a film, who would you like to play the lead?
I think Tom Hiddleston would make a fantastic Lord Thornbrook, and Emma Stone has the right amount of sass to play Lady Louisa.
Fiona: Any advice for other writers?
Never give up, and always look for ways to hone your craft and learn new techniques.
Fiona: Anything specific you want to tell your readers?
Thank you for all of your support. I hope you enjoy reading Louisa and Thornbrook’s story as much as I enjoyed writing it.
Fiona: What book are you reading now?
I’m re-reading Jane Austen’s Persuasion for the umpteenth time. I read it every year.
Fiona: Do you remember the first book you read?
Where the Wild Things Are was the first book I read by myself. I loved to imagine sailing off to another place and exploring.
Fiona: What makes you laugh/cry?
A great book or movie, and the television show This is Us.
Fiona: Is there one person, past or present, you would love to meet? Why?
Jane Austen. I’d love to hear how she came up with the ideas for her stories, and the fabulous declarations of love from Mr. Darcy and Captain Wentworth she wrote.
Fiona: Do you have any hobbies?
Other than reading? No.
Fiona: What TV shows/films do you enjoy watching?
This is Us, Younger, Grey’s Anatomy (I just can’t quit you!), Pride and Prejudice (BBC version with Colin Firth!), Sense and Sensibility (with Alan Rickman), The Sound of Music, Love Actually, While You Were Sleeping, Sleepless in Seattle, Beauty and the Beast, live action Cinderella.
Fiona: Favorite foods, colors, music?
I’m an80s girl when it comes to music. The Cure, U2, Bon Jovi, Aerosmith, the Footloose soundtrack, etc. I also like classical music, especially Mozart, Tchaikovsky, Vivaldi and Dvorak. Favorite food is chocolate chip cookie dough ice cream. Favorite color is green.
Fiona: Imagine a future where you no longer write. What would you do?
Hopefully I’ve become wealthy from all of my fabulous books being turned into movies so I can spend all of my time reading and traveling.
Fiona: What do you want written on your head stone?
Fiona: Do you have a blog or website readers can visit for updates, events and special offers?
My website is http://allybroadfield.com
Amazon Author page: https://www.amazon.com/-/e/B00JJSBET0
Thanks so much for hosting me at Author Interviews, Fiona!