Thursday, July 8, 2010

Interview __ Carly Phillips

I've known Carly for a long time and remember her early writing. We were members of the same critique group for many years and struggled with the ups and downs of writing and families. She watched me semi-raise my granddaughter and I watched her raise her girls. Her success was won through hard work. Janet

> 1. What's your genre or do you write in more than one?

I'm a contemporary girl at heart. I love to read contemporary and I love to write it. My preference is light contemporary although my new Berkley books will be a touch more serious than the ones out this summer (KISS ME IF YOU CAN 7/27 and LOVE ME IF YOU DARE 8/30).
> 2. Did you choose your genre or did it choose you?

Both. I chose contemporary from the beginning and I chose category romance. I started trying to sell to Silhouette Special Edition and ended up being tempted (pun intended) by Brenda Chin at Harlequin Temptation to write for that line, which was the first book/line I ultimately sold to.
> 3. Is there any genre you'd like to try? Or is there one you wouldn't?
I would love to try paranormal but I don't have that kind of mind/thought process. I wouldn't try Romantic Suspense for the same reason. I have a linear mind. Twists and turns are hard for me. That's why I have plotting partners who have those strengths.

> 4. What fiction do you read for pleasure?
I read contemporary romance, the same kind I write:
I also read

> 5. Tell me a bit about yourself and how long you've been writing,

At one time I liked this question. Now it just freaks me out because I can't believe how fast time flies. I started writing 18 years ago. (How is that possible?) My oldest daughter was all of one year old. She's graduating high school this week. I'm a work from home Mom, I have two girls, ages 18 and 14 (youngest is graduating middle school this week) a hubby and two soft coated wheaten terriers. I love reading contemps, I recently started knitting and love that too!!
> 6. Which of your characters is your favorite?

Wow. Tough one. Can't pick. And I took a break to try and decide, too!
> 7. Are there villains in your books and how were they created?

Occasionally I will do "bad guys" or villains, but they are usually more obvious than not and a plot device rather than a true mystery. KISS ME IF YOU CAN, out this summer is a similar book.
> 8. What are you working on now?
My first book in a new contract for BERKLEY about a fictional upstate NY town called SERENDIPITY. The book is the story of the town but also of three brothers, the first of whom is returning after ten years. He has plenty of wrongs to right. It's about second chances, the road not taken, things like that. I'm very excited about the story!
> 9. What's your latest release and how did the idea arrive?

In one month, KISS ME IF YOU CAN (7/27/10) followed by LOVE ME IF YOU DARE (8/30/10) in the Bachelor Blogs/Most Eligible Bachelor series. These are very light contemporaries that I had a blast writing.
> 10. How does the book open? Show the opening scene-- 400 to 500 words.
Sam Cooper approached his favorite hot dog stand, his stomach grumbling at the sight of the blue and yellow umbrellas shading the cart from the blazing sun. Fresh from a boring press conference where the mayor and police commissioner announced the long awaited wrap-up of a string of apartment burglaries on the upper west side, Coop had his digital recorder in one pocket and cash in another.

The aroma of New York’s finest hot dog had his mouth watering. “Hey, Dom. How’s business today?” he asked the owner.

“Can’t complain. Busy lunch crowd. Slow now but it’ll pick up again during the commute.” The older man, tanned from his days outside, lifted the metal lid, revealing Coop’s belated lunch. “The usual?”

Coop nodded. “The works. Actually make it two. I haven’t eaten since breakfast.”

He glanced at his watch. Nearly three P.M. Enough time for him to eat and get his story in before heading home for the day.

While Dom placed his hot dogs in their buns and began loading them up, Coop glanced around his city. On a hot August day like this one, few people wandered around outside. The smart ones high tailed it out of town, heading for the ritzy Hamptons or Jersey Shore. Others holed up inside, with their A.C. blasting.

Coop’s favorite hot dog stand was located on the corner of 47th Street and Park Avenue South. A people watcher by nature, part of what led him to become a reporter he supposed, Coop always studied the stores and buildings in the vicinity, and the people entering and exiting each.

As usual, The Vintage Jewelers caught his eye. It didn’t strike him as upscale. Instead it was rather ordinary. As if to compensate, the window changed often, rotating gaudy, elaborate pieces almost daily. Usually only women frequented the establishment, no big surprise, but today a man wearing a sweatshirt, hood over his head, stood inside.

“Strange,” Coop muttered, since the heat from the sun had him sweating in his shirt and the steam coming off the sidewalk blistered the souls of his shoes.

“Dogs are ready,” Dom said, distracting Coop’s attention.
But not before Coop caught sight of what looked like a gun in the man’s hand.



Wendy S Marcus said...

Hi Janet! Hi Carly!
I'm a contemporary girl too! Love to read em and write em. Although I also read historical and suspence.

Great excerpt, Carly. I can't wait to read the book. Good luck with your new contract!

Anonymous said...

More-tell me more. I felt the heat rising from his shoes as he caught sight of the man in the shop.

Ah the joy of writing, learning from each other, reading and more writing.

Thanks for a lovely interview and excerpt.


Terri said...

A gazillion years ago, before I even knew what RWA was, I encountered this screen name with a P and a bunch of numbers on an AOL romance novels message board. She invited me to give HVRWA a whirl, and so, with not a little trepidation, I ventured across the mighty Hudson to thrill everyone with my head-hopping 25-page kiss.

So that's how I got there and you can all blame Ms. Carly.

But Jeez, Louise, time flies.

And just when I think I know stuff about this woman, she divulges soap opera and other insanity on Twitter.

Kiss Me If You Can and Love Me If You Dare both sound like fabulous, light-hearted reads. I'm so there.

Looking forward to Serendipity.

PS: You can do paranormal. Just give a contemporary character some startling para power. In fact, I'd pay good money to see that!

PPS: Have a great time at RomCon !

Agatha Townsend said...

Love all your books Carly as you know, great interview, waiting for Kiss Me If You Can and Love Me If You Dare ;I love contemporary romances as you know. Agatha P. Townsend