Be glad in the Lord and rejoice! Psalm 32:11

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Five Questions With ... Susan Mallery, author of "Already Home"

Today, I am privileged to present an interview with author Susan Mallery. Her latest book, "Already Home," was released yesterday (March 29) and she took time out of her busy schedule to answer a few questions about her writing life and upcoming projects!

At what age did you know that you wanted to be a writer? 

Susan: I was about 21. I probably would’ve wanted to be a writer sooner if I’d had any concept that it was even a possibility. I thought writers were exotic and sophisticated, and I was just a girl from L.A. But I took an evening course on writing while I was in college, and that was it for me.

At what point in your career did it finally sink in – “hey, I’m famous,” and did it make a difference in your writing?

Susan:  I’m only slightly famous in certain circles. I don’t feel very famous when I’m cleaning up after my dog or waiting in line at the grocery store. Whether or not people know my name doesn’t have any impact on my writing, but I do feel that I have become a better writer over the years because I practice my craft. I work hard to write books that readers will love, and I’m truly honored by the response.

Who are some of your favorite authors? Who inspires you?

Susan:  I find Debbie Macomber to be very inspiring, and she’s also one of my favorites. I’m thrilled to be sharing cover space with her this month on THE KNITTING DIARIES. (My story in THE KNITTING DIARIES is loosely linked to ALREADY HOME, and both books were released on March 29.) Debbie doesn’t chase after trends. She writes books from the heart. They move her, and they move her readers. I try to do the same.

What do you have coming up in the future?

Susan:  After ALREADY HOME, my next books will be the second trilogy in the Fool’s Gold series. The Hendrix triplets will fall in love in August, September, and October. Boom, boom, boom, one right after the other. I’m having so much fun with the town of Fool’s Gold. They’re coming to grips with the man shortage in a fabulous way.

What advice would you have for anyone wanting to break into the writing biz today?

Susan:  Write what you love to read. Write a story that moves you – makes you laugh, makes you cry, scares your pants off. And read, read, read, read. The more you read, the more you’ll understand storytelling, and the more you’ll understand what kinds of stories are marketable today.

I so appreciate Susan's time to talk about her profession!

Susan's new book, "Already Home," is destined to be the favorite book of the spring/summer reading season! 

About The Book:

After nearly a decade as a sous-chef in a trendy eatery, Jenna is desperate for a change. She's supported her ex-husband's dreams for so long that she can't even remember her own. Until she sees a for-lease sign near her parents' home and envisions her very own cooking store.

Her crash course in business is aided by a streetwise store manager and Jenna's adoptive mother. But just as she's gaining a foothold in her new life, in walk her birth parents—aging hippies on a quest to reconnect with their firstborn.

Now Jenna must figure out how to reconcile the free-spirited Serenity and Tom with her traditional parents, deal with her feelings for a new love interest and decide what to do about her ex's latest outrageous request. In the end, Jenna will find that there is no perfect family, only the people we love.

My Thoughts:

Set in Georgetown, Texas (a charming town near Austin), "Already Home" is the story of coming home in more ways than one.

Susan's character, Jenna Stevens, has come back home, licking her wounds, so to speak. Her self-confidence has been stolen by her ex-husband, and it's time for Jenna to learn how to be her own woman again. She has a strong family support system with her adoptive parents, and thankfully, meets Violet, who's business sense and abilities help her store become a huge success. But when her birth parents show up, their sudden presence gives Jenna a whole new dimension of her life to consider!

I loved how Susan handled the wide variety of sensitive subjects with this book - adoption, birth parents, spousal abuse, even relationship abuse - while keeping the storyline light and fast-paced! Plus she has the delightful town of Georgetown portrayed to a T!

Readers will find this tale hearwarming, as well as heart-wrenching at times, but I guarantee - it will be a story that is remembered long after the final page is turned.

About the Author:

Susan Mallery is the New York Times bestselling author of over one hundred romances and women’s fiction novels, and she has yet to run out of ideas! Her funny and sexy family stories consistently appear on the USA Today bestseller list and have landed as high as #5 on the New York Times list. She has won many awards, including the prestigious National Reader’s Choice Award. Her books have been named to the Top 10 Romance Novels lists of 2007, 2008, and 2009 by Booklist, a publication of the American Library Association, and she was the only author on the list all three years. Because her degree in Accounting wasn't very helpful in the writing department, Susan earned a Masters in Writing Popular Fiction.

Susan makes her home in the Pacific Northwest where, rumor has it, all that rain helps with creativity. Susan is married to a fabulous hero-like husband and has a six pound toy poodle...who is possibly the cutest dog on the planet.

Be sure to check out Susan's incredible website at http://www.susanmallery.com/!

She also has a fabulous contest running in connection with the release of "Already Home."

Win the Way to Your Man's Heart Contest

They say that the way to a man’s heart is through his stomach… but I believe that seducing his taste buds is the real secret. What would you cook to win a man’s love?

Submit your original recipe between March 1 and April 24, 2011 for a chance to win a $300 gift card to Williams-Sonoma, possibly the most fabulous cooking store on the planet. Imagine what fun kitchen toy you could buy for yourself with $300! I (Susan) will choose the top three recipes, make each of them, and serve them to my personal taste tester (aka, her husband). Keep in mind that I’m (Susan) not a gourmet cook, so I will choose recipes that are fairly uncomplicated. The winner will be notified on May 1, 2011.

Send your recipe to jenel@susanmallery.com with a note verifying that the recipe is original, created by you. The recipe must come in the body of the email (no attachments).

Contest rules:
  • No purchase necessary.
  • Void where prohibited by law. Otherwise open to fans around the world.
  • Entries accepted from March 1 until April 24.
  • Recipe must be original, not from a cookbook.
  • Winner will be notified by email on May 1. One prize of a $300 gift card to Williams-Sonoma will be awarded to the creator of the winning recipe.
  • Winning recipe will be published on http://www.susanmallery.com/.

My thanks to Eric Glover at PlannedTVArts for his assistance with this interview and for arranging for a review copy of Susan's book.  I was not compensated for my opinion.
Check out this adorable video that ties in with "Already Home!"


Sarah Jio said...

I just LOVE that cover for ALREADY HOME! Very enticing. xo P.S. Sharon, I hope you're enjoying VIOLETS! Thank you so much for reading!

Mary said...

Ditto what Sarah Jio said about the cover. It makes me want to read the book without knowing anything about it! Your review makes me want to read it even more. Nice interview and review!