Where were you in your life before you became a writer? Did this influence your writing?
I’ve had a wide variety of “professions” in my life including legal secretary, working at a commercial cattle feedlot, teaching every grade from Kindergarten through college, and grant writing. All of these gave me a foundation for being able to write well. As for influences, there are bits and pieces of my life in all my stories – a scene/incident, a friend/acquaintance/boss, a location. Life is too full of unique characters and happenings not to put them into my stories.
Are you genre specific or general? Why? I don’t mean genres like romance, mystery, fantasy, etc. There are many subgenres of the above.
I am all over the map! I’ve written everything from short stories to full length fiction; poetry to a documentary on state history. I write short stories and turn them into Christmas story cards, and fables/myths about places I’ve visited like Ireland and Mexico.
When I started writing romance, I thought my first book would be about privateers, because I loved reading those. Instead, it took place on a cattle ranch in Montana. (With more than 22 romances now out, I still haven’t written about privateers.) As a story begins to form; or as I jot down random scenes that I think will work in a story, I don’t have much choice in whether it will be contemporary, historical or time travel. That seems to be determined by my characters or in some cases by the story idea.
For example after visiting the Steamboat Arabia museum several times, I knew there was a story to be written, but did I want to write a contemporary about its excavation or a historical about when it traveled the river in the 1850s? Combining the best of both worlds, I wrote a time travel titled “Lost Knight of Arabia.”
Did your reading choices have anything to do with your choice of a genre or genres?
As a child I read all the horse books I could get my hands on, and then progressed to Perry Mason mysteries. Those topics find their way into my writing, but usually only in a minor way. Before I started writing as an adult, my first experience with romance was reading Kathleen Woodiwiss and I fell in love with the genre. Although I write other things, the majority of my focus is on romance.
What’s your latest release”?
“An Interlude” was just released in February. It’s a fun contemporary romance involving an uptight New York businessman and a contrary historical preservationist from New Orleans.
The element that makes it unique is a diary from the 1920s. It’s not a time travel, but the diary gives a glimpse into the past which plays a major role in their present time.
What are you working on now?
A quilt. Seriously, I am, but as I sew my brain is plotting and building characters and trying to decide where to set my next story. I know it will be contemporary, but I haven’t decided if it should take place in a little seaside town or a snowy mountain resort town. I just know it won’t be in a huge metropolis.
Where can we find you??
My website is www.authorsden.com/barbarajbaldwin and at Author Central at https://www.amazon.com/Barbara-Baldwin/e/B01LWCOKF6.