Author Interview with Grant from New In Books

Ariella Talix

April 2, 2021

Book: Just Curious

What can you tell us about your new release, Just Curious?

This is my second MMF story and the first that is not connected to any of my previous books. I dreamed up characters I’d like to know and fell in love with all of them. Willa is a writer, so that was an easy persona to identify with. Jackson is the successful brainiac who has a strong, protective spirit. Casey is the artistic one who tends to go a little overboard now and then. They were so much fun! In order for the book to sound plausible, I consulted with a leading authority in web security who also owns a Tesla. So, while a few reviewers have intimated that the plot is a bit far-fetched, it’s truly not that crazy. I think readers will be hard-pressed to not get sucked into the drama as it unfolds.

I grew up in the town where the story takes place, and despite living at the beach, managed to become an avid snow skier. The skiing scenes are near and dear to my heart. All in all, this book is meant to be great escapism.

What or who inspired you to become an author?

When I was in the third grade, my teacher recommended an after-school enrichment program for creative writing. It was so much fun, I was hooked, and I love to write. I didn’t actually write a novel, however, until 2018—mostly because I was busy with my career as an artist. While I enjoy reading all genres, contemporary romance sparked something that finally compelled me to try it myself. When I got to 50K words and the story still wasn’t finished, the feeling of accomplishment was amazing. I can’t imagine life without writing now.

What’s on your top 5 list for the best books you’ve ever read?

I can only pick 5? Books that stand out to me are To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee, The Once and Future King by T.H. White, The Red by Tiffany Reisz, This Man and the rest of that series by Jodi Ellen Malpas, and all of the Harry Potter books by J. K. Rowling. Obviously, I have eclectic tastes. Not all of the books are the best things ever written, but they sure are some of the best stories ever told! I also have to give kudos to Karen Marie Moning, George R. R. Martin and Philip Pullman for sheer imagination. Wow.

Say you’re the host of a literary talk show. Who would be your first guest? What would you want to ask?

There are many authors who would be interesting, but I’m sure other people you’ve interviewed have covered them. So, since this is a pipedream type of question, I’d interview William Shakespeare. I’d be tempted to ask if he really wrote all of what was attributed to him, or were the rumors true that it was someone else. But… that would be impertinent. So, I guess I’d ask him if he had any idea of the impact his work would have on the world.

What’s your favorite thing about writing?

I love to create something from nothing. I’m sure it’s obvious from reading my books that I have a strong background in art and use that as a theme quite often. I get a similar feeling when creating visual art for people to enjoy as writing a great story to entertain readers. The big difference, however, is that writing is far more personal and actually more satisfying.

Someone near and dear to me was asked once why he enjoyed being a musician. The questioner seemed to expect “applause” as an answer and was shocked to hear, “I like making people happy.” I feel the same way. We all need an escape from the harsh realities of life now and then, so creating art to look at, beautiful music to enjoy, or writing a wonderful story that can transport the reader for a while is the best gift a creative person can give.

What is a typical day like for you?

It’s certainly been less active in the past year while we’ve been stuck at home thanks to COVID. Generally, I have breakfast with my husband and then write or do “book stuff” for a few hours until lunch. Depending on the weather, I take one or two walks with my dog and spend the rest of the time writing unless I’m grocery shopping or cooking. We have a pretty quiet life here. I used to be a lot more exciting, but least I have plenty of time to write now and I’m a lot less sleep-deprived.

What scene from Just Curious was your favorite to write?

Oh my! Is this a loaded question, given the MMF theme of the book? I love the way the book starts when Willa meets Jackson, and I used something special from my real life to carry that scene. But I guess the scene that resonates with me the most is when they are in Casey’s study and the triad begins. It’s always a challenge to figure out how to go about getting three people into a relationship, and I’ve tried to do that in different ways for each of the books. (I’m writing a third MMF book right now). I think the study scene was unexpected and steamy, so I’m extremely happy with it.

Do you have a motto, quote, or philosophy you live by?

“Oh, just go for it!”

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