I’m delighted to welcome my fellow Wild Rose Press author, Gail MacMillan, to my blog today as she introduces her newest contemporary romance, Holding Off for a Hero.
Tell us a little about Holding Off For a Hero.
I’m excited about the publication of “Holding Off for a Hero.” It’s my first romantic comedy with a seasoning of suspense involved. I had a wonderful time writing the story, even enjoyed the numerous and edits. The publication date couldn’t be better, either. With a pivotal scene taking place on Halloween night, what better time than two weeks before the actual night of spooks and goblins. Cover guy is my Pug, Bruiser. He’s a delight both in real life and fiction. We call him Mr. Congeniality because of his outgoing personality. Anyone who has ever enjoyed a dog is sure to fall in love with the Bruise.
Blurb: Beautiful, vivacious Emma Prescott has a love-’em-and-leave-’em reputation. Fact is, Emma’s holding off for a hero. When she moves to a cabin at wilderness Loon Lake and meets her one neighbour, biology professor Frasier MacKenzie, he’s still just another guy, even with his killer blue eyes and a body that just won’t quit…until he rescues her and her Pug from one danger after another, from drowning to wild animals to a pair of armed and angry drug dealers. Then he definitely falls into hero territory.
But the professor has no intention of filling the role of white knight in Emma’s life. All he wants is to be rid of her and her annoying little dog so he can get on with his “research.” In fact, he’s ordered to get rid of them whether he wants to or not.
Looks as if Emma may have to go on holding off for a hero…
What inspired this story?
The real life young woman who becomes heroine Emma in the story and her adventures got me thinking about weaving her escapades into a romance. Then we adopted Bruiser and inspiration was piled on inspiration. What else could I do? I had to write their story.
What are you working on now?
Do you have any releases scheduled for this year? I’m currently working on three contemporary romances, a historical, and a non-fiction dog book. My immediate plans must include focusing in on one and getting it done. Coming from The Wild Rose in 2013 will be an outdoor contemporary romance spiced up with adventure and mystery entitled “Rogue’s Revenge.”
What are your writing goals for this year?
My goals for this year are to zoom in on one or two manuscripts and get them finished.
How do you come up with ideas?
I think I’m a bit like Agatha Christie when asked how she’d come up with the character of Hercule Poirot. She said she didn’t know, he just came to her. I admit sometimes an event or person gives me the shadow of a idea but mostly plots and characters arrive out of thin air.
What do you enjoy most about writing?
I love the magic of writing, of creating books and stories out of thin air.
Where do you start when writing? Research, plotting, character, or…?
I start whenever an idea hits. I always record it immediately in case it doesn’t come again. Sometimes it’s only a few lines, sometimes a few hundred words…just to keep the thought alive until I’m ready to develop it.
What is the best thing about being an author?
The joy of creation, of making your very own tales come to life.
What did you learn from writing your first book or what do you wish you’d known before becoming published?
Hmmm. I was beyond fortunate in getting my very first book published on my very first try. After that, it was all uphill. I wish I hadn’t been seduced into thinking ensuing manuscripts would so easily find a home. Also, I think I’d consider a pen name. After using my current actual name on twenty-six books, it’s a bit late to change.
Do you have a favorite time of day for writing?
I like to write in the early morning before I walk my dogs. Editing can be an evening affair.
Do you have a favorite hero and/or heroine in your books and why?
My favorite hero and heroine are generally the pair in whatever book I’m working on. However, Emma and Frasier in “Holding Off For a Hero” are especially dear to me. I have two sequels in mind for them…if my publisher will allow.
What is your favorite scene from this story and why?
My favorite scene has to be Halloween night with its scary scenario and then a hot love scene to top it off.
How do you balance writing and everyday life?
I follow my instincts. Sometimes I’m a writing kick, sometimes I’m on a ready jag. I go with the flow. Some days (not many I admit) I would like to be seized by a housecleaning spirit.
Where is your favorite place in the world?
My favorite place in the world is my home with family, friends, dogs, and books gathered around.
What is your favorite food to cook or eat?
I love cherry cheesecake. In fact, I absolutely cannot resist one. Therefore, I try to avoid making one and only allow one in the house on special occasions.
What do you like to read?
I love mysteries, the classic kind, and some of the newer writers like Rhys Bowen, Maureen Jennings, and Sue Owens Wright.
Who first introduced you to the love of reading?
I believe my mother introduced me to reading even before I was borne. I can’t otherwise explain how I cannot remember a time when I didn’t love books and reading. She was an amateur actress who could read with wonderful expression.
These are few of my favorite things:
1. Definitely number one, my dogs
2. Long, solitary walks with the above
3. My favorite reading spot on the couch, again with number ones curled up beside me.
She floored the gas, and they took off with a squealing of tires.
“Hey, hey!” he yelled. “Slow down! The speed limit is 100 km. You’re heading to 130!”
“Look, I told you, I’m in a hurry!” she exploded. “I’ve got a ton of things to do back at the cabin. You see,” she continued, quieting and sounding sly, “I’m having a party tonight. I have to get ready.”
“A party? You’re having a party? At the lake?” Ah, man, that just about tears it.
“Actually, a bachelorette bash. One of my teacher friends is getting married next week, and a bunch of us decided we’d give her a real whing-ding of a sendoff…up at my cabin where there’ll be no witnesses. Teachers and the likes of myself have reputations to think of, you realize.” She cast him a wicked glance.
“So there’ll be music and a lot of noise and…” The Professor’s blood pressure would skyrocket when he gave him this information.
“Oh, y-e-a-h.” She dragged out the last word.
“Couldn’t you have it somewhere else? Like a male strip joint in town?”
“Didn’t you hear what I just said about teachers and others of that ilk? We can’t be seen parading into one of those places. Our superintendent would suspend every last one of us. Anyway…” She looked over at him. “I don’t see why it should be such a big deal for you. You don’t have to keep banker’s hours. If the noise bothers you, stay up, watch a video, and sleep in on Sunday morning.”
“Okay, okay, but will you please keep your eyes on the road? And slow down! There’s a speed trap somewhere along…”
Behind them a siren wailed.
“Quick!” she ordered, pulling over as the police cruiser rolled alongside. “Hunch over and clutch your chest!”
Bio: Three time Maxwell Medal winning author, Gail MacMillan is a graduate of Queen’s University and author of twenty-six published books. Her articles and short stories have appeared in magazines across North America and in Western Europe. Gail lives in Bathurst, New Brunswick with her husband and two dogs, Fancy a Little River Duck Dog and Bruiser a Pug who is the hero of her latest book “ Holding Off for a Hero” and its cover model.
You can find Gail on the web at:
You can find Holding Off for a Hero in eBook and Print at: