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?
Clair Brett I am 48
Fiona: Where are you from?
I am from the north country portion of the state of New Hampshire, USA
Fiona: A little about your self (ie, your education, family life, etc.).
I am married to my real life hero, we have two daughters (19, and 20), 2 rescue dogs, and two cats (one thinks he is the third dog), I have a degree in culinary arts, and bachelor degrees in Elementary Education, and liberal studies (major in Political Science, and minor in psychology). I taught middle and high school for 15 years and now write full time in my little blue office at my house.
Fiona: Tell us your latest news.
I had a book come out in Dec., the third book in my Improper Wives for Proper Lords series; Marked for Love, and I have another book coming out at the end of January, which is a Common Elements project book; Winn’s Fall.
Fiona: When and why did you begin writing?
I started writing as a new mom of two littles and teaching middle school, because I needed something more “grown up” in my life. Basically I was reading to escape and would find myself “rewriting” the books I was reading so they went the way I wanted, and decided I could write my own story and have it go the way I wanted.
Fiona: When did you first consider yourself a writer?
I think I have always considered myself a writer, but it took a long time for me to consider myself an author. I guess when I chose my pen name would be when I knew I was an author.
Fiona: What inspired you to write your first book?
I was in a place where I was feeling trapped in my daily life like we all do some times, and I thought what would it be like to just leave everything and start over?
Fiona: How did you come up with the title?
My heroine’s father was a gambler and got the family into debt, so my heroine didn’t like betting, so when she has to strike a deal with the hero and gamble on the unknown of him holding up his side of the bargain, it seemed ironic to me.
Fiona: Do you have a specific writing style? Is there anything about your style or genre that you find particularly challenging?
I write historical fiction, so to some extent the prose are longer and more descriptive. I have been told that I strike a good balance between a modern voice and pacing and the descriptive sweeping prose the readers want. I also tend to have characters who are a bit sardonic, as I relate to that.
Fiona: How much of the book is realistic and are experiences based on someone you know, or events in your own life?
I think in fiction there are always aspects of the story that have similarities to real life, but in all of my books I would say the only realism, that is based on my experiences, is that all of my heroines are very strong and independent. I am as well, so I know what they will face when trying to maneuver through a society that thinks they should behave otherwise.
Fiona: To craft your works, do you have to travel? Before or during the process?
I would love to some day travel to England and Scotland for research, but for right now, I sit in my office and do my research on the internet.
Fiona: Who designed the covers?
I have worked with a couple of designers. Susan Ann Wall, and Victoria Miller
Fiona: Is there a message in your novel that you want readers to grasp?
In my Improper Wives for Proper Lords series I have two messages that come through. The first is ‘Love Saves’ and the other is ‘Embrace your Independence’.
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 favorite authors are Eloisa James and Karen Hawkins. I love how Eloisa James creates strong characters with very human imperfections. And I love the humor in Karen Hawkins books.
For “new to me” authors Mia Vin, Emma East, and Tammy Andresen
Fiona: Outside of family members, name one entity that supported your commitment to become a published author.
I would have to say the biggest supporter of my writing has been RWA, and my plotting group, The Plot Bunnies, who I found through my local RWA chapter. I would not be a published author today if not for the teachings and support from these groups.
Fiona: Do you see writing as a career?
I do. My husband has given me the great opportunity to be a full time writer. He is hoping at some point I will even make money doing it. giggle.
Fiona: If you had to do it all over again, would you change anything in your latest book?
I love my latest book Marked for Love, but if I could do it over again, I would have had a bit tighter of a plot figured out before I started. I had to stop at the halfway point and re plot quite a lot of it, which delayed me getting to the finish line. Other than that, I think of each of my books as a window into my life at the time it was written, and like children they are perfectly imperfect the way they are. My next one will be better, because I have one more book under my belt.
Fiona: Did you learn anything during the writing of your recent book?
The book that came out in Dec. was my “therapy” book. I learned a lot about myself and my own resilience in the pages of that book. It helped me work through a very difficult life event. As for other books, I am always learning interesting facts and tidbits from research. My husband calls me a wealth of useless information.
Fiona: If your book was made into a film, who would you like to play the lead?
Good Question! I would want Gerard Butler to play my hero from Marked for Love. He is just brooding enough, and for a heroine I think I would like to see Emma Watson.
Fiona: Any advice for other writers?
keep writing and don’t let your own fear of not being good enough stop you from it. Remember at some point you could use a fork, but on most days now you can probably use one with expertise (I said most days). If you enjoy it, don’t let the pressure of doing it for a living over shadow that.
Fiona: Anything specific you want to tell your readers?
I love my readers and love hearing from them. One of the best parts of my day is interacting with readers on social media. Also, if you read a book and like it, review it. Many of us on hard days, will go and read those positive reviews to remind us why we do this.
Fiona: What book are you reading now?
Taming A Duke’s Wild Rose by Tammy Andresen. I love her style.
Fiona: Do you remember the first book you read?
I remember my favorite book as a child, which was a “golden” book entitled the Tawny Scrawny Lion.
Fiona: What makes you laugh/cry?
Everything! Cute animal videos and babies laughing are my favorites to make me laugh, and as far as crying goes, I consider myself a stoic New Englander, but as I get older stories of kindness, and even sappy tv commercials will make me cry. I tried for a very long time to hide, but I’ve gotten picked on by my loving family, so now I let it go like a watering pot.
Fiona: Is there one person, past or present, you would love to meet? Why?
Abigail Adams. She was a strong, independent woman during a time she shouldn’t have been. I think she would have great wisdom for women today.
Fiona: Do you have any hobbies?
I love crafty things, and home remodeling. Lately, I am “taking up” embroidery. I say that loosely, because I am not as accomplished as my heroines at the task, but I better appreciate someone spending hours working on a piece. I also spend a huge amount of time spoiling my fur babies.
Fiona: What TV shows/films do you enjoy watching?
I love Supernatural, Criminal Minds, Numbers, and currently we just finished the first season of the Witcher. However, I have been known to be watching tv and reading a book at the same time.
Fiona: Favorite foods, colors, music?
My favorite foods are really all of it. I am very adventurous, but my comfort food when I have had a bad day is pasta with red sauce, every time.
My favorite colors are: green, orange, and purple. I can’t pick one over the other.
My favorite music: I love many kinds of music. When I write I listen to instrumental or soft classical, but for fun I would have to say I am a rock and roll girl from the 60’s through the 80’s.
Fiona: Imagine a future where you no longer write. What would you do?
In a future where I don’t write, I must have already made my millions and spend my days playing with all the dogs I rescue with my millions and lay on the beach in Sanibel Florida for the rest of the time.
Fiona: You only have 24 hours to live how would you spend that time?
On a beach in the sun with the people and animals I love most around me, and with all the food I “shouldn’t” eat to indulge in.
Fiona: What do you want written on your head stone?
She left the world a better place than she found it and she had no regrets.
Fiona: Do you have a blog or website readers can visit for updates, events and special offers?
You can find me at my website: https://www.clairbrett.com.
You can check out my blog, find my social media links, read free chapters, and join my newsletter there. Please stop in and look around.
Dealing with the Viscount: https://books2read.com/u/mqzE7Z
An Heiress by Midnight: https://books2read.com/u/mvYeM2
Marked for Love: https://books2read.com/u/mdGxdd
Visions of Pleasure: https://books2read.com/u/4NGVE6
Winn’s Fall: Does not have a buy link yet. they can check my website for updates: https://www.clairbrett.com
Amazon Author page USA :https://amzn.to/2Ns3E5p