Please welcome Deirdre Martin who’s joined us to talk about her story in DOUBLE THE HEAT and her new novel STRAIGHT UP
Tell us about Breaking the Ice, your novella that’s part of the DOUBLE THE HEAT anthology:
It’s a story that combines my two series, the Wild Hart Saga and the New York Blades. The heroine, Lennie Buckley, is an aspiring fashion designer who hangs our with her friends at the Wild Hart, an Irish pub in Manhattan where my last novel, WITH A TWIST, was set. The Hart has become the new watering hole for New York’s hometown hockey team, the New York Blades The latest addition to the Blades, a sexy Russian player named Sebastian Ivanov, notices Lennie immediately, and the rest, as they say, is romance history.
I really loved intertwining the two series, since it allowed me to re visit favorite characters from both worlds. This is why I enjoy writing interconnected books; they allow me to spend time with old favorites who, crazily enough, start to feel like family. (Though unlike family, none of them wrecked my Barbie Doll mansion when I was eight!).
Do you have a new novel coming out soon?
My next novel, STRAIGHT UP, will be out in May 2010. The hero is Liam O’Brien, the youngest of the O’Brien clan around whom the Wild Hart Saga is based.
It has an element of the thrill of the chase to it. After getting on the bad side of New York’s Irish mob, Liam is trying to weather the storm in Ireland. Working as a bartender in his parent’s old village of Ballycraig, he’s not looking for any trouble. But he could use a bit of fun.
The heroine, Aislinn McCafferty, has already been scorned by a man once at the wedding altar. Now, any man who tries to woo her is quickly and coldly dispatched. The unknowing Liam soon learns this the hard way–and is immediately intrigued.
Eagerly accepting a wager from the pub’s owner, Liam begins a determined pursuit of the stubborn and beautiful Aislinn, who in turn uses all of her wiles to rid herself of the charmingly determined Yank. But neither of them expects this donnybrook of the sexes to turn into an unlikely love…
It was wonderful being able to set a book in rural Ireland, which is a place I love. I was also able to incorporate a couple of incidents from my Irish grandmother’s childhood in the book. Family stories are the best, aren’t they? The fact I could preserve and share some of mine with readers makes me very, very happy.
Every author has his/her own daily rituals. What is your day like?
I’m an insanely early riser: I’m usually up by five thirty in the morning, whereupon I drag my sorry butt to work out. I’m one of those people who has to exercise first thing in the morning or I won’t exercise at all. After breakfast with my husband (who is also a writer who works at home), I hit my office. I like to check and respond to my emails first thing, and then I start writing. I usually write (or stare at the computer screen cursing) from nine until one, when my husband and I break for lunch. Then it’s back to the office to edit what I wrote in the morning, and make some notes about what I want to write the next day.
What would you say is the one thing you MUST have while you’re writing?
I actually need two things: coffee and quiet. I’m not one of those writers who can have the TV on in the background or uses music for inspiration. I need to be able to hear the voices in my head loud and clear!
What would you say is the hardest aspect of writing your books?
The writing itself. When the words flow, it’s like flying; but when they don’t, I alternate between panic (“What if I’ve forgotten HOW to write a book?!”) and depression (“It’s not going well today because I suck.”). You’d think by now I would have figured out that’s not a very productive way to think, but I do it with every single book. Drives my husband nuts.
How much time do you put into research before you actually start writing?
I like to allow myself a month, if possible. I tend to over research, but my feeling is that it’s better to have too much info than not enough. I love doing research, especially hands on stuff. To date, my favorite book to research was TOTAL RUSH: I got to spend time at a firehouse in Manhattan, and it was a real eye opener. I think you need to do hands on research whenever you can to make things as real as possible. Verisimilitude is very, very important to me.
Let’s say we take a peek at your TBR pile. What would we find?
The new Nick Hornby book, Karen Kendall’s latest, the Hungry Girl recipe book, and one thousand back issues of the New Yorker.
What’s next for you?
I just started work on my next novel, which also combines the world of the Wild Hart with that of the New York Blades. I can’t help it: I’m addicted to writing about sexy hockey players! Readers can find out more about both series at my website, www.deirdremartin.com.
Thanks for asking me to blog, and I hope everyone out there has a great Holiday season!
Thanks for taking the time to blog for us and I hope your Holidays are lovely.