Tell us about yourself and how many books you have written.
Like many authors, I’ve been a voracious reader all my life and have been writing stories since my early teens. But, it wasn’t until I was laid off from my third job in five years, that I decided to stick my neck out and do something I’ve always wanted to do: Write and publish a book. I began my first book in May, 2013 and self-published it through Create Space in September, 2014. My second book, a sequel to the first, was self-published in October, 2014, and the third book in the series was self-published in April 2015. I’m halfway through writing book #4 and intend to have a total of five books in the series.
What is the name of your latest book and what inspired it?
The name of my book series is, “The Necklace,” and the full title of the first book is, “The Necklace – The Dusky Club, June 1962.” It was inspired by a trip I took to Texas in May, 2013 to visit my best friend from elementary school, when we drove to Austin to see Paul McCartney in concert. We’d both been avid Beatle fans in the 1960’s and saw them in person three times in 1964, ’65 and ’66. At that time, we were young teenagers, and spent a lot of time making up stories about us and our favorite Beatle. I was a Paul girl, and Marsha was a George girl. As we were driving to Austin, I jokingly remarked to Marsha that we should pass the time by making up a new story for old-time’s sake. She laughed and said, “But George is dead,” to which I immediately replied, “No problem…Let’s just time-travel.” Thus, I began a time travel fantasy with a 63-year-old woman traveling back in time in her 17-year-old body to meet the man of her dreams before he became famous. I couldn’t resist the humorous aspects of a woman with her 63-year-old brain in her 17-year-old, hormone-inflamed body. Nor could I resist the conflict between a 20-year-old, arrogant and chauvinistic guy and a liberated and modern-thinking woman. It truly let to fireworks both in and outside of the bedroom.
Do you have any unusual writing habits?
Not sure if it would be called a “habit,” (and I also believe this to be true for other authors as well) but I only write when I feel as if my characters are talking to me. Sometimes they won’t shut up, and I have to write, write, write. Sometimes they say nothing and I take a break. And, sometimes they inspire me to write unexpected things to a point where I have to stop and stand back and ask myself, “How did that happen? How am I going to resolve that? How dare they do that? What now??!”
I do tend to write best, however, at night when the house is quiet, but then, if my characters are abnormally talkative, even though I get tired and want to stop writing, they won’t let me sleep.
What authors, or books have influenced you?
Most recently, I have to say that I like Amanda Quick and her Regency-era books. I can really relate to her feisty and independent female characters and her male characters with a touch of “alpha-male” about them. My favorite book, however, is “The Mirror,” which is a time-travel story by Marlys Millhiser. I also enjoy the older Regency era books by Georgette Heyer, who also tends to have very self-sufficient and strong female characters.
What are you working on now?
I’m working on book 4 of my “The Necklace” series to be followed by book 5, which will have an unexpected “twist.” Once done, I have ideas for other time-travel romance stories, possibly going back to the Regency era. Or, a contemporary romance set in the early 60’s which will tap into the music scene in Liverpool, England, home of the Beatles. I have many new friends in England, several who live in Liverpool and who were part of the Mersey scene asking to collaborate and provide information from the time.
What is your best method or website when it comes to promoting your books?
My website is: LindaSRice.com
And, to answer the question, I’m not sure yet. I hired a Publicist a couple of weeks ago, and she’s helping me to set up a blog and improve my social media marketing efforts. She is also setting me up for events at book stores and libraries.
On my own, I’ve developed somewhat of a “cult” following of Beatle fans on Facebook, (especially Paul McCartney ladies) who are harassing me to finish book 4.
I’ve also, however, sent out over 100 copies of my first book to other people who simply like romance or time-travel and have had positive feedback.
Do you have any advice for new authors?
Yes. Just write. But, even more important, believe in yourself. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve become discouraged because my books aren’t selling or because people have promised to write reviews but never seem to get around to it. It’s during those down times that I have to tell myself to keep writing and just believe in myself, that all my reviews so far have been excellent, that I do have a small following of loyal readers who want more and that I can’t give up what I love to do and have always dreamed of doing.
What is the best advice you have ever heard?
Pretty much the same as I just wrote above: Keep writing and believe in yourself.
What are you reading now?
I’m actually re-reading a book, “Green Darkness” by Anya Seton. I also have a couple more Amanda Quick books that are lined up behind it as well as a Sylvia Day erotic romance.
What’s next for you as a writer?
To work with my Publicist to get my books out to a larger audience. And, at the same time, to keep writing.
What is your favorite book of all time?
Ah! As I mentioned above, “The Mirror” by Marlys Millhiser.