Thanks for joining me today on Night Owl Romance.
Tammie King of NOR: To get us started can you please start by telling us a little about what you are working on or have coming out?
Anne Marsh: THE HUNT, my debut novel, is a Sept. 29, 2009 release from Dorchester.
Tammie King of NOR: Could you please tell us a little about yourself?
Anne Marsh: I'm a professional technical writer living in California's Bay Area, which means I spend an inordinate amount of daylight hours with engineers. I write online helps, software manuals, federal grants applications-- those sorts of things. Technical writing actually turned out to be an ideal background for writing paranormal romance-- receiving and responding to editorial feedback was hardly a new concept. I've also had the obligatory dot-com/start-up experience (worked in a now-defunct hardware start-up that had a crystal disco ball hanging from the ceiling and unlimited Dagoba chocolate in the kitchen). My kids are not convinced that I ever separate myself from my laptop but, I swear, I do. When I'm not writing or channeling my inner homemaker (who routinely refuses to come out to clean and make dinner), you can usually find me digging holes in the garden for more daylilies and bulbs or out for a little run with the kids (I bribe them with slurpies if they get Mommy out to run-- it's cheaper than a gym membership).
Tammie King of NOR: If you could be one of the characters from this book - Who would you be? And why?
Anne Marsh: I'd be Amun Ra. He's still insisting on being mysterious, but I have a feeling he's going to have one sexy story to tell. He's the alpha in charge of the Guardians and he knows what he wants-- and how to get it. Joining him on a collision course with an independent female who knows what she wants and how to get it would be a delicious ride to share.
Tammie King of NOR: Who or what influenced you when you wrote this book? Did you have a CD, Songs, environment, etc?
Anne Marsh: I did have a soundtrack running through my head and constantly on loop in my iTunes library-- music from the Pirates of the Caribbean.
Tammie King of NOR: Can you please give us a sneak peek into the book?
Anne Marsh: THE HUNT is a sexy paranormal romance set in a fantasy world with Egyptian overtones. The virgins who enter the twisting tunnels of the Guardians have little hope-- or wish-- to escape. But Miu has her own reason for participating in the Hunt, and she has no intention of being caught... until she meets the darkly sensual predator who's on her trail.
Tammie King of NOR: Please tell us what you have planned next?
Anne Marsh: I'm working on the second book in the Hunter's Mate series (Hebon and Aura's story), as well as the first book in a new series about fallen angels, tentatively titled BOND WITH ME.
Tammie King of NOR: What kind of research did you do for this book? Did you enjoy the research process?
Anne Marsh: Research? Absolutely not! One of the most liberating aspects of writing paranormal romance for me, personally, has been getting to Make It All Up. I've done lots of reading about the craft aspects of writing, but for HUNT I stuck to a fantasy world that I invented. Technical writing demands accuracy (engineers are such sticklers!) and my academic background was even worse-- everything had to be footnoted in triplicate. I love sitting down to write and thinking "What should this place look like?" and knowing that the answer is "Whatever you want it to look like."
Tammie King of NOR: Do you belong to a critique group? If so, how does this help or hinder you?
Anne Marsh: I don't currently belong to a critique group, although I just started looking. One of the (many) things I learned from working with Alicia Condon and Dorchester on HUNT was how to read from an editor's perspective. I now know what questions it would be useful (for me, personally, at any rate, given my own writing style) to ask of a critique group or beta reader. I wasn't ready to take that step before (the curse of the shy person-- but we really like to know what we're doing before we put ourselves out there!)
Tammie King of NOR: What would be the best way for readers contact you? Do you have a website? Email address? MySpace site? Blog? Message Board? Group?
Anne Marsh: Email always works for me: annemarsh at ymail dot com. I also have an author website where readers can join my Yahoo group (http://www.huntersmate.com) and am on Facebook (http://www.facebook.com/people/Anne-Marsh/1363565502).
Tammie King of NOR: When did you first decide to submit your work? Please, tell us what or who encouraged you to take this big step?
Anne Marsh: Inadvertently, the HR department at Pixar encouraged me to start submitting my work. I was working my dream job as a technical writer for Pixar: I wrote software manuals explaining to all their oh-so-brilliant technical directors how to use their very, very complicated software. It was a blast-- I could spend days animating superheroes and translating those instructions into printed text. Unfortunately for me, I got laid off (ouch-- bad Pixar!) and so I went home one afternoon, cried madly, and then decided that I would do what all those Good Housekeeping magazines my mother had been giving me said to do: figure out what I REALLY wanted to do and use my layoff as a stepping stone to something else. I started writing that afternoon. Those pages became an entry in the San Francisco Area RWA's 2007 Heart-to-Heart contest. Hilary Sares at Kensington asked to see the full of THE GOBLIN, I gulped ('cause it sure wasn't done yet), and got to work. After that high, I had the bug. I had to keep submitting. I think I'm going to send Pixar HR a copy when the book comes out...
Tammie King of NOR: What was your first published work and when was it published?
Anne Marsh: Other than some published academic articles (Nadezhda Durova, anyone?), THE HUNT is my first published work. HUNT will be released by Dorchester Love Spell on Sept. 29, 2009. I'm still trying to figure out if I should be ecstatic or crying madly because I'm releasing the same day J.R. Ward launches her new series about fallen angels.
Tammie King of NOR: What is the best and worst advice you have ever received?
Anne Marsh: Best advice was from reading an interview with Kresley Cole. She said she had a rule of 25: always have 25 irons in the fire-- submissions, contest entries, queries to agents, whatever. When one comes back with a "No," send another one right out. It certainly helped me manage the ups and downs of writing-- there are lots and lots (and lots) of "no" answers. I felt like I had a little bit more control when I created lots of possibilities for "yes" answers. And "they" are right: it only takes one yes. Worst... I don't know. Probably all those well-meaning folks who pointed out the publishing statistics, implying that I didn't have a snowball's chance in hell of getting published by NYC. And should stick with the technical writing. Obviously, I ignored them.
Tammie King of NOR: Do you outline your books or just start writing?
Anne Marsh: For HUNT, I just started writing with a very, very loose outline. For the next book in the series, however, I'm starting with a much more detailed outline. While I love the lifestyle of the panster writer, I have fewer revisions with a more plotter-ly approach. Plus, I'm really not trying to torture my editor ;)
Tammie King of NOR: Who is your perfect hero? And why?
Anne Marsh: Am I allowed to say Captain Jack Sparrow? I have a horrible weakness for strong, determined bad boys who are also intelligent and in possession of a sense of humor. We're not even going to mention how many times I've watched his final confrontation with the Kraken. I've tried desperately to fall in love with Will Turner, but he's just too good. I'll let Elizabeth keep him and move Captain Jack in, thanks ever so much.
Tammie King of NOR: Is there a genre of book you would like to write but haven't yet?
Anne Marsh: There are so many genres that I would love to explore! In addition to the obvious choice of urban fantasy (who doesn't love kick-ass,feisty heroines?), I'm chewing on ideas for both a YA series and historical fiction a la Susan Carroll. My background is in Russian literature and there are some fabulous heroines lurking there that I'd love to introduce to readers.
Thank you for this opportunity!