Please welcome Melissa McClone to the virtual offices today! Melissa is the author of many romances, and I invited her to stop by and chat about her entry in the Larkville Legacy series.
[Manga Maniac Cafe] Describe yourself in 140 characters or less.
[Melissa McClone] Former engineer turned Harlequin Romance writer, loves reading & writing, Star Wars fangirl, mom to three kids, too many cats and a dog.
[Manga Maniac Cafe] Can you tell us a little about His Larkville Cinderella?
[Melissa McClone] His Larkville Cinderella is Book #5 in Harlequin Romance’s The Larkville Legacy continuity series. The eight books center around two families—one from Texas, the other from New York—who discover a secret that draws them together.
My story features Megan, the youngest daughter of the Calhoun family from Larkville, Texas. She’s an inspiring costume designer who recently graduated college and is doing an internship in Hollywood. She’s excited to have finally escaped the confines of Larkville and her family, neither of which she feels understand her at all. But she misses her long time best friend, who she thinks is the man of her dreams. That is, until she meets movie star Adam Noble.
Here’s the back cover blurb:
The small-town girl with big dreams has finally reached Hollywood! For years, costume designer Megan Calhoun has longed to be seen for who she is, not who she isn’t. But under the gaze of A-list heartthrob Adam Noble, this Cinderella begins to step out of the shadows….
Adam hides from his painful past behind every role he plays. But something in Megan is threatening to smash apart this carefully constructed facade. Will he finally take his biggest risk…throw away the script and open his heart
[Manga Maniac Cafe] His Larkville Cinderella is part of the Larkville Legacy series. Can you share how you and the other authors worked together write these books?
[Melissa McClone] We (the authors) were provided with a "Bible" by the editors that described the overall story for the continuity, the basics of each of the eight books (characters, setting and storyline) and what threads or information from the other stories needed to be included in what books. We also received a timeline of the stories (including backstory plot points) and a character spreadsheet listing the characters, their descriptions and other info about them from each of the eight books.
We set up a yahoo groups loop so we could discuss details of Larkville (places and people not listed in the Bible that we all could use to provide continuity between the books) and sort out what other things needed to be in what books in addition to what we were given by the editors.
As questions came up as we were writing our manuscripts, we would go to the loop to make sure what we were thinking of doing worked. Working out all these little things is my favorite part of doing a continuity. It’s fun to get to know other authors and bounce ideas off each other.
[Manga Maniac Cafe] What three words best describe Megan?
[Melissa McClone] Hardworking, creative, misunderstood
[Manga Maniac Cafe] What are three things Adam would never have in his bedroom?
[Melissa McClone] Me though I’d love it if I could be there. LOL! This is fun question.
I think I’ll have to go with the following: Any gossip or tabloid magazine because he hates gossip, a cup of decaffeinated coffee because he only drinks the real stuff, and a video recorder because his fans wouldn’t like it if he were caught in a sex tape scandal.
[Manga Maniac Cafe] What are Adam’s must have accessories for a night on the town?
[Melissa McClone] A limousine, a beautiful date to show off, and a bodyguard to keep the rabid fans away.
[Manga Maniac Cafe] If Megan had a theme song, what would it be?
[Melissa McClone] Christina Perri’s A Thousand Years. The song really fits Megan.
[Manga Maniac Cafe] What are your greatest creative influences?
[Melissa McClone] Interesting question. I’ve never thought of this before. Let’s see…
Authors: I’ve always been a big fan of books by Nora Roberts and Debbie Macomber. They were my first auto-buys when I started reading and then later trying to write category romance.
Photos: I’m very visual so use pictures and images to inspire my characters and settings, but these change with each story. In this case, Chris Hemsworth acted as the perfect muse and kept the creativity flowing!
Music: Again, this changes with each manuscript, but every book has a soundtrack with music that I associate to the story. Listening to the songs makes it easy to get into the right frame of mind and just start writing.
[Manga Maniac Cafe] What three things do you need in order to write?
[Melissa McClone] My MacBook Pro, my cats sleeping next to me, and a glass of iced tea
[Manga Maniac Cafe] What is the last book that you read that knocked your socks off?
[Melissa McClone] Catching Fire by Suzanne Collins is the one that really sticks in my mind. I couldn’t put the book down! (My kids had been on me to read the entire trilogy for a long time so I finally did.) Lately I’ve been reading a lot more YA than Romance due to my fourteen year old daughter.
[Manga Maniac Cafe] If you had to pick one book that turned you on to reading, which would it be?
[Melissa McClone] I’d say Anne McCaffrey’s Dragonsong. Loved it! Couldn’t wait to read the next Pern book!
[Manga Maniac Cafe] What do you like to do when you aren’t writing?
[Melissa McClone] Sleep! Seriously though, I enjoy spending time with my family. Whether it’s hanging out at home doing a puzzle or playing a game or heading outdoors for geo-caching or skiing, the more time we can be doing something together the better.
[Manga Maniac Cafe] How can readers connect with you?
[Manga Maniac Café] Thank you!
You can purchase His Larkville Cinderella from your favorite bookseller or by clicking the widget below.
Here is a list of the entire Larkville Legacy series, in order by release month.
The Cowboy Comes Home by Patricia Thayer – JULY
Slow Dance with the Sheriff by Nikki Logan – AUGUST
Taming the Brooding Cattleman by Marion Lennox – SEPTEMBER
The Rancher’s Unexpected Family by Myrna Mackenzie – OCTOBER
His Larkville Cinderella by Melissa McClone – NOVEMBER
The Secret that Changed Everything by Lucy Gordon – DECEMBER
The Soldier’s Sweetheart by Soraya Lane – JANUARY
The Billionaire’s Baby SOS by Susan Meier – FEBRUARY
Here are all of the covers –