Joyfully Reviewed Welcomes Author Cara Covington!
What is your most current work out ?
My latest release was on January 23rd, the 25th book in the Lusty, Texas Collection entitle A Very Lusty New Year.
Anna Cooper knows her mother wants her to find a rich husband but Anna refuses. Since her mother has always harangued her for being fat and frumpy, she knows no man would want her. Eschewing the idle-rich existence her mother lives, Anna answers an intriguing ad in the paper.
Craig and Jackson Jessop might be considered investment gurus, but organized they are not. They decide what they need is an office manager—someone who can create order out of their chaos and manage them. It would be helpful, too, if the successful candidate possessed good pattern recognition skills.
The minute they set eyes on Anna Cooper, they know she was meant to be theirs. Winning her as their bride should be easy. All they have to do is negotiate their way past a beast of a future mother-in-law, a con man looking to scalp them, and the biggest obstacle of all—Anna herself, who doesn’t seem to know what a gem she truly is.
Tell us a little about your release and what inspired you to write it.
My readers have come to enjoy the stories of the previous generation, how the parents of the contemporary heroes and heroines got together. So I’ve been writing one a year, and these stories are recognizable by their “holiday themed” titles.
When you start writing, do you already have the story plotted out or do you let the characters dictate what will happen?
My usual process is to begin a document called “basic concept”. This is a very loose outline, mostly a rambling bit of prose talking about the characters. I keep writing this until I know my first sentence; as for the characters dictating, yes. If they don’t step up and take over I have a problem.
What inspired you to write in your genre? Is this the genre you started writing in or have you morphed to this one?
The year was 2005. I was already writing romance, when I attended a conference and discovered “erotic romance”. I also discovered “e-books”. I knew I could make my romance stories hotter, and I hoped that, being a new medium, I’d be able to get published. Fortunately I was right on both counts.
Who was the toughest character for you to “get right” that you have written so far?
There is a wonderful character in my stories named Kate Benedict – Grandma Kate. Fittingly, the first character I did a holiday story for was Kate. She met and married her two Benedicts in 1942. I knew the woman in my stories, the nonagenarian considered the head of the combined families; but who had she been at the age of 21, when she was a lieutenant in the army nurse corps? That was my toughest character challenge in the series to date.
Do you draw inspiration for your characters from real life? Any fun stories you could share?
I don’t really have any fun stories with regard to series inspiration; but I try very hard to come up with characters that my readers can identify with; men and women who are facing challenges like the ones my readers face. To that end, every one of my novels has a core “theme”. Yes, I write hot sex, but that isn’t all that I write.
What do you find the hardest part of writing?
The hardest part is coming up with compelling stories to fit the characters who ask to have their story told.
Name one thing that your readers would be surprised to know about you.
I can be very disorganized.
Do you have a guilty pleasure?
Yes. I love hidden object games, and I play them online nearly every day.
What TV Show/s are you addicted to?
The Voice, and Castle, and Hawaii-Five-O, and Survivor yes, even Bitten, though I really think the producers should change that credit at the beginning of each episode to read “very loosely based on the series by Kelley Armstrong”.
Do you have a hobby that you like to try and squeeze in?
I guess playing games on line is my hobby; I do a crossword puzzle every morning, and a few other games as well, and I tell myself that it’s all to keep my mental faculties in shape.
What do you need before you start writing?
Anything that is just a must have or the creative juice don’t flow? I need to be relatively stress free in the moment. That means, I need to sit, and focus on only the writing.
Does music influence your writing? If so, do any of your stories have a theme song?
The only time music enters into my work are those scenes that my characters are someplace where there is music and dancing. For my stories that cross-over with the wonderful series by my friend Heather Rainier, her Divine Creek Ranch series, those songs are usually chosen by Heather, as she knows better what music would be played at the Dancing Pony. Otherwise, if it’s a community center dance, I listen to different country hits, and then find one that suits the characters and the mood.
Do you write one book from start to finish or are there multiple works underway at any given time?
I generally do best focusing on one book start to finish. And that is how I write. I do review what I’ve written the day before and then get back to it. I don’t “go back to the beginning” unless I have had to stop for an edit. Then I do go back and read what I’ve written in my work in progress, to date.
Where were you when you got your first contract? What was the book and who did you tell first?
My first contract came in August 2006 at a very low point in my life—just a month after the death of my middle child, my second son Anthony. I told my husband first.
How old were you when you read your first romance book?
I think I was in my twenties, hip deep in kids and needing something to read that I could escape into.
Do you have an all-time favorite romance book (not written by you 🙂 )?
The Bride by Julie Garwood. I have read it so many times I had to get a second copy.
What author causes you to “go fan girl”/ squeal over/anticipate upcoming books?
D. B. Reynolds. Have you read her Vampires in America series? If she reads this interview, she will laugh, because she’s a friend of mine. But yes, I anticipate her books even more than I do J. D. Robb’s.
If you still have one of those pesky non writing jobs what is it?
Nope, I actually came to being a published author from having taken a medical retirement. But before that I worked for more than 20 years in the field of accounting.
Do you have a favorite movie you have seen in the last few months and an all-time favorite?
I don’t watch so many movies any more. I was a fan of the big musical – Oklahoma, Hello Dolly, Funny Girl. They don’t really make those any more.
What are you currently working on, and what else is in the wings?
I’m currently finishing the edits for Love Under Two Extroverts, the 26th book in the Lusty universe, and writing, Love Under Three Valentions, the 27th. I’m sticking with the Lusty, Texas series for a while, as this is what my readers want.
If you could co-write with another author who would it be?
I’m very blessed to be doing that, after a fashion, already. My friend and fellow Siren author Heather Rainier and I “cross” our series once a year. Her series, the Divine Creek Ranch series, also takes place in Texas. Our readers love it when we have each other’s characters “visiting”, and when we have an over arching plot that ties our stories together so naturally.
How did you hear about the “bunnies” at Joyfully Reviewed?
I have written my last 27 books as Cara Covington, but before that I was writing as Morgan Ashbury. I’ve been privileged to have met and known Joy since my very first RT as a published author back in 2007.
Where can readers find you _________? (Include all links you want, facebook, twitter etc….)
FaceBook for Morgan: https://www.facebook.com/morgan.ashbury
FaceBook for Cara: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Cara-Covington/616302148428229
Twitter for Morgan: @morganashbury
Twitter for Cara: @caracovington
And for the silly side –
What is your favorite type of ice cream?
I love frozen yogurt, any fruit flavor.
Ranger or Morelli (if you know to what this refers please answer with which one and why 🙂 )
I have never read this series by Janet Evanovich. Does that make me boring?
Team Sam or Team Dean? And Why.
I really am boring as I have never watched Supernatural, either! 🙂