Saturday, November 2, 2013

Some Skype Time with M.A. Grant

Author M.A. Grant joined me on Skype to chat about her writing and books! Her New Book Lace & Lead just released. Enjoy and post some questions for her!

The best posted question will 
win a book or two from MA!

JM: Are you enjoying the Whole Escape thing?

MA: I am. I really am. It was a total surprise to ever be published. I found Escape actually as a fluke. Robyn Rychards, who’s another Escape Artist, I met her through the Harlequin online forum. She’s the one who suggested I look at Escape. When I did, I was pleasantly surprised that they wanted my books. It’s been a very nice surprise then entire way.

JM: That’s kinda the same with me. I found Escape through a critique partner.
MA: Yeah? That’s great.

JM: So, what’s the book you have coming out?

MA: My August release was Red Moon and my one that’s coming out in November is called Lace and Lead.

JM: It’s a great cover, but I wasn’t’ sure if it was Lace and Lead (like a dog lead) and it was a BDSM kinda thing or… (Both laugh)

MA: No, it’s a Sci-Fi novella. (still laughing)

JM: So, what are you working on currently?

MA: It’s called Blood Moon and it’s about the second brother in the Sinclair pack. His name is Connor annnnd it is absolutely kicking my butt. I’m sitting down and working through it, but I had to go back and delete a bunch of it, but it’s back on track. And then, there’s another one that I’m working on with a critique partner in England for a while. That’s just kind of like the labor of love…I’m not doing much with at this point. It’s a New Adult, so I’m all over the place right now. Technically I’m working on Blood Moon…but…

JM: And what genre and age is that?

MA: That would be Paranormal Romance and Adult.

JM: When you wrote Lace and Lead, was there anything that happened in the story you didn’t expect?

MA: (eyebrows shoot up) Oh yes! A lot. I write for characters and so I really had no idea where it was going. I was listening to a song and I got, like the first paragraph of the book and the next thing I know it’s just going. I think that probably the most surprising thing that happened was that Taggart, the hero. Usually my characters are pretty clear but he was so loud and obnoxious. This crude man in my head, constantly yammering my ear off until I finished. Normally I’ll get a break, but he didn’t give me one.
JM: So the surprise was the kind of character or how he kept after you?

MA: Usually I can put a story aside for a little bit, but for whatever reason I just could not get him out of my head. It was horrible because I’d go to work and I’m trying to do my job. The next thing I know I’m rushing home to write because I have to get these words out that were in my head all day. I have notes that are on napkins and random scraps of paper. It was just a disaster. I’d bring home this bundle of stuff every night and my husband would be like, (nodding her head and smiling) “All right, I‘ll see you later.” And I’d rush upstairs and start typing it up.

JM: Are you a quick writer?

MA: I usually don’t track words per day. My work week is so chaotic that I may be able to get a thousand words a night. But the weekends, they are when I usually hammer out. Lace and Lead came together in two weeks. So thirty thousand words in that time, it’s by far the fastest I’ve ever written anything.

JM: Where’s the strangest place you’ve ever written?

MA: (looks up and shakes her head) This is going to sound horrible…but church.

JM: (laughs)

MA: I was in church and I always keep a notebook in my purse because I know this happens all the time. So I was discreetly trying to pull it out and write down part of a romance novel…in church. It makes me sound really sacrilegious and I’m not. It was just that flash if inspiration for a scene and it had to get written down. The cute little old lady next to me kinda of smiled at me and waited for me to finish. (laughs)

JM: Where is your idea writing place?

MA: Here in my office. (gestures at the cedar paneled room) Since we got the house, I’ve been building my dream office. My husband built me bookshelves so all my “go to books” that I love and adore for inspiration are right here. Then I have a wall of pictures, I’m a big picture person. I have a little basket with touchstone items and perfumes and colognes and things that I’ll use. It’s warm and comfortable with everything in arms reach. And I have M&M’s in the desk drawer, so…

JM: So, the perfumes, colognes and touchstones, do you use them to give you inspiration?

MA: (rubs the back of her neck and nods) I’m a really fidgety writer, so having things like that really help. Scents really work with me so I’ve got candles too. The perfumes and scents I relate to certain characters. When it’s fall and the leaves dry out I’ll grab some of the leaves and bring them in.

JM: Have you written anything that ever shocked you?

MA: Yeah I’m getting that a lot with Connor’s character in Blood Moon. He’s a lot darker character than I’ve ever written before. There are times where I stop, think I don’t think anyone will ever be able to read this and move past it, but hopefully it works. (crosses fingers)

JM: In Lace and Lead, which of your characters would you most like to have lunch with?

MA: Probably Taggert. He’s really fun and I like the fact that he’s no nonsense and speaks the truth. I like honest people and it would be good to talk with him and know that he’s going to give me his accurate viewpoint.

JM: What tattoo would you get to celebrate the novel?

MA: Probably a raven and I’d get it here on my forearm in the super sensitive area where I’d never actually get a tattoo. I’d get it there, so I could see it all the time.

JM: What’s more enjoyable to write, Hero or Villain?

MA: Oooo. I think it depends on the story. Heroes are fun but I really like writing villains because they are so twisted. I really like writing villains where you really don’t know what their motivation is for a long time. I find it fascinating to see the whole network of things that are underneath what they are doing.

JM: Are any of your characters based on people you know?

MA: A little bit. I grew up in a family with all sisters and when I married, my husband he’s in a family of all brothers. So seeing the difference between sister interactions and brother interactions…it was a whole new world for me, I’d never experienced anything like that. He and his brothers are…um…(widens her eyes and looks at me sideways) emotionally constipated…I guess is the best word for it.

They’re great, but it took me years to realize that when they’re talking about football or they’re grunting at each other while they sit on the sofa, that there’s actual meaningful emotion behind that. So it’s been really fun to include in my writing. I know I’ve hit it on the head when my husband reads a scene and says, “Yeah, that’s exactly what we’d say to each other.”

JM: Give us an item on your bucket list.

MA: Go to New Zealand and travel in the footsteps of the Lord of the Rings cast. I’m gonna have elevenzies on top of the mountain, wearing a little cloak and it will be fantastic.

JM: Have you ever written vicariously?

MA: Oh yeah. We live in a small town and there are sometimes you really have to watch what you say to someone. So it’s really liberating to write those scenes where there’s a fight and the character unleashes some type of verbal evisceration. I get to live vicariously thinking this is what I would like to say to that person.  (both laugh)

JM: What’s your favorite attribute in a person?

MA: Probably honesty, regardless whether it’s good or bad to hear.

JM: What is your least favorite attribute in a person?

MA: Ooo (looks up) A lack of empathy. There is nothing that drives me nuts quite as much as people who are so caught up in their own life, that they don’t stop for half a second and to think about what else is going on with another person.

JM: Did you use either of those in your current novel?

MA: Yes. I do use both of those.

JM: Interesting! I can't wait to read it. Thanks for hanging out with me, did you enjoy it?

MA: I had a blast! Thank you for having me!


Author Biography:
Marion Audrey Grant is fortunate to live in the rugged beauty of Alaska's Kenai Peninsula. She's believed in happy endings and true love since she was very young, when her parents would read her Mercer Meyer's books Beauty and the Beast and East of the Sun, West of the Moon. At the time, she could only look at the pictures and pretend to understand the words. Later in life, the realization that she had stories of her own to tell would lead her to graduate college with majors in Creative Writing and English. Thanks to her husband’s unending support, she now works as a scribe to the intelligent women and wounded heroes who need their stories told.

Find her books & Contact M.A. at the links below

Official Lace & Lead Blurb:
Breathtaking action, startling originality and polished story-telling combine in this futuristic Sci-Fi novella about a rough mercenary, a pampered daughter, and the lies they both believe. 

Blue-blood Emmaline Gregson survived one of the most brutal mining accidents ever recorded in the Republic, but she's never been in a firefight. So when unknown assailants circle the family estate, the only man she can rely on is Peirce Taggart. A former Lawman turned mercenary, Peirce has a simple job: protect Emmaline until her father can collect her and sell her to sex trafficker Richard Stone to pay off his debts. But when Arthur Gregson tries to cheat his way out of the contract, Emmaline seizes the opportunity to hire Peirce for herself, regardless of how crude, dangerous, or appealing he may be. Given the chance for redemption, he promises to help her escape both her father and Stone. But Peirce soon realises that hiding her in his apartment until the storm has passed may be more dangerous than looking down the barrel of a gun...

ISBN/APN: 9780857990945
Release Date: November 1st, 2013
Category: Sci-Fi Romance

Purchase Links:
Kobo (read on Desktop, eReaders, Tablets, Kobo, Android and iPhone):


Official Red Moon Blurb:
Dark, moving and original, a story of family, survival, and getting on with life...

Flynn Sinclair understands pack loyalty — for years as his Alpha father’s enforcer, he has done things in the name of duty that he can’t ever forget. But the vast expanse of Alaska offers him a peace he’s never known. Alone, removed from pack life, he can focus on his research and try to forget his life before.

But duty has a way of inviting itself in, and Flynn finds himself doing two reckless things in one week: leaving the safety of Alaska to save his brother Connor’s life, and unwittingly falling in love with Evie Thompson, a woman who doesn’t deserve to be drawn into his terrifying world.

Connor carries news of their father’s descent into madness, and it looks like neither geography nor Flynn’s attempts at disengagement will put off a confrontation. Flynn had finally begun to believe that he might deserve something good in his life — something like Evie — but to move forward in the light, he must first reconcile with the dark.

ISBN/APN: 9780857990655
Release Date: August 1st, 2013
Category: Paranormal Romance

Purchase Links:

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