Hello and welcome to my blog, Author Interviews. My name is Fiona Mcvie.
Let’s get you introduced to everyone, shall we? Tell us your name. What is your age?
My name is Carol Opalinski but I write as Carrie Nichols. As for age, I will hit a milestone this month which makes me eligible for Medicare. 😊
Fiona: Where are you from?
I was born and grew up in New England but have lived in East Tennessee for the past 22 years.
Fiona: A little about your self (ie, your education, family life, etc.).
My husband and I will celebrate our 45th wedding anniversary this year. We have 2 adult sons (ages 31 & 29) and 2 cats. We love to travel as a couple and as a family. I am addicted to BBC shows especially crime dramas and know a Seinfeldor a movie quote for just about any occasion.
Fiona: Tell us your latest news.
I just signed a 4-book contract with Harlequin Special Edition!
Fiona: When and why did you begin writing?
I’ve written all my life. At one point, I worked as a freelance journalist for our local newspaper and wrote romance on the side. It wasn’t until my youngest moved out that I began to seriously pursue getting published in fiction.
Fiona: When did you first consider yourself a writer?
I’m not sure but I felt like maybe I had a shot at being a published fiction writer when I signed with my agent.
Fiona: What inspired you to write your first book?
I have always loved to read and always knew that someday I wanted to do that too.
Fiona: How did you come up with the title?
I only got to keep one of my titles. LOL! The Sheriff’s Little Matchmaker was my original title. All my Special Editions have be renamed. But that’s fine with me because they came up with much better titles. I especially love The Scrooge of Loon Lake.
Fiona: Do you have a specific writing style? Is there anything about your style or genre that you find particularly challenging?
I’m told I have a distinctive writing voice but I’m not sure I could describe it. I love writing dialogue and love humorous, sexy banter, which comes in handy since I write romance. I struggle with description and narrative.
Fiona: How much of the book is realistic and are experiences based on someone you know, or events in your own life?
A few things are based very loosely on things from my life. For example, in The Marine’s Secret Daughter the little girl’s much-loved stuffed animal is called “Mangy” as in “Fiona’s Mangy Mutt”. One of my niece’s had a tattered doll that my sister used to refer to as “that mangy thing”.
Fiona: To craft your works, do you have to travel? Before or during the process?
I don’t have to travel but I do love to travel. I don’t write much while I travel except to write down ideas or impressions as they come to me.
Fiona: Who designed the covers?
My publishers are responsible for those. For example, with Harlequin I fill out an Art Fact Sheet plus I keep a Pinterest page with pictures of people, places and things so when it’s time for a photo shoot, the art department has a lot of inspiration.
Fiona: Is there a message in your novel that you want readers to grasp?
I write a lot about family and home. The need for connection coupled with the danger of opening your heart and getting hurt.
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?
My old favorites are Susan Elizabeth Phillips, Sandra Brown, Lisa Kleypas, Brenda Novak, Abby Green, Julie James and Jennifer Cruise. Some of my newer favorites are Helen Hoang, Teri Anne Stanley, Lucy Gilmore and Miranda Liasson.
Fiona: Outside of family members, name one entity that supported your commitment to become a published author.
That’s a tough one because I have some of the most awesome critique partners, but I will say that my agent, Jill Marsal, read my stuff over and over again until I grasped certain concepts like conflict and plotting. LOL!
Fiona: Do you see writing as a career?
Since I am retired from my day job, it now is my career.
Fiona: If you had to do it all over again, would you change anything in your latest book?
LOL! I would change lots of stuff…I don’t read them once they are published because I always want to fiddle with the words to try and make them better.
Fiona: Did you learn anything during the writing of your recent book?
I’m not sure it was any one thing. Each book is different and poses a unique set of problems.
Fiona: If your book was made into a film, who would you like to play the lead?
My inspiration for my hero of The Scrooge of Loon Lake was Karl Urban.
Fiona: Any advice for other writers?
Keep writing! Perseverance is the key in this business.
Fiona: Anything specific you want to tell your readers?
Fiona: What book are you reading now?
I finished Charmed by Nora Roberts this morning and tonight I started The Outsider by Stephen King
Fiona: Do you remember the first book you read?
It was probably something by Beverly Cleary. I recall loving Henry Huggins.
Fiona: What makes you laugh/cry?
Anything and everything. I’m a sucker for sappy commercials on TV. And I love dark comedies such as Snatch and In Bruges.
Fiona: Is there one person, past or present, you would love to meet? Why?
Jane Austen because she created Mr. Darcy and Captain Wentworth.
Fiona: Do you have any hobbies?
I love doing counted cross stitch.
Fiona: What TV shows/films do you enjoy watching?
I love British crime dramas such as Inspector Lewis, Vera, Unforgotten and New Tricks.
Fiona: Favorite foods, colors, music?
I love dark chocolate, shortbread and bubble tea with boba. I love the color red and Bruce Springsteen.
Fiona: Imagine a future where you no longer write. What would you do?
I would still read and probably travel even more than I do now.
Fiona: You only have 24 hours to live how would you spend that time?
With my family! Preferably on a Greek Island.
Fiona: What do you want written on your head stone?
As a joke I tell my husband I want my head stone to say “No! That’s not what she would have wanted.” 😊But in reality I want “wife & mother”
Fiona: Do you have a blog or website readers can visit for updates, events and special offers?
My Social Media Links:
Amazon Author Page USA : https://www.amazon.com/Carrie-Nichols/e/B01D9P7X9I