Carole Mortimer is quickly approaching her 200th novel published and I thought it would be fun to include an interview of her as well as a small giveaaway sponsored by Dear Author.
Carole Mortimer is a USA Today Bestselling author, recipient of a Romantic Times Pioneer of Romance Award 2014, and she was recognised by Queen Elizabeth II in 2012 for her ‘outstanding service to literature’.
She has written almost 200 books for Harlequin, in the Presents series, and Regency Historical and is currently writing her new series which she plans to self publish–a contemporary romance with a dash suspense.
Q. How did you originally become a published author?
I have been reading romance novels since I was thirteen years old – usually at night under the bedclothes with a flashlight! I wrote my first book when I was very young, sent it off, and predictably received a rejection letter; it was far too short, and the storyline definitely needed working on. But the letter came with helpful advice, and after waiting a couple of years I wrote another story and tried again. This book was accepted, and became The Passionate Winter, my very first novel for Harlequin Mills & Boon.
Q. How do you structure your time and how do you motivate yourself to write 200 books?
I’ve had the same schedule now for several years. Monday to Friday, from 9am-1pm, I sit down at my laptop and I just write. I have no idea where the inspiration comes from—and I’ve never really wanted to question it too deeply, just in case I lose it! I just love to write. Always romance. Always with a Happy Beginning—I’ve always thought that the end of the book is the start of the hero and heroine’s future together.
My family is very important to me—I have a lovely husband and six sons, and I spend as much time with them all as possible. When the children were younger my routine was far more haphazard—usually I did my writing when they were in bed or at school. In fact, our youngest son, who is now 18, had no idea I was an author until about 6 years ago, when someone at school asked him if his Mom was Carole Mortimer, because his Mom read my books.
Q. What does it take to write 200 books?
Inspiration and a lot of self-discipline. The inspiration, as I said, is something I never ever question; I’m just grateful that I have it. The discipline is very important, and that really does come from within yourself. There are so many demands on people’s time, especially nowadays, that the self-discipline element, setting aside certain hours for writing every day, is just so important to any successful career, not just an author’s. Authors have the disadvantage in that they don’t have an ‘office’ as such that they go to every day—for instance, I write my books sitting at the breakfast table with my laptop every morning. There are always distractions that could take up your time instead of writing. The thing is not to let that happen. Easier said that done, I know. I was actually expecting my first son when I wrote my first book, and no, it wasn’t easy caring for a young baby and writing as well. But I think if you’re determined to be a writer, have a need to write, as I do, that you will find the time, no matter how busy your life is.
Q. How has the industry changed from when you first started compared to now?
The publishing industry, as I’m sure everyone knows, has been in great upheaval for the past 3 years or so, ever since self-publishing—or Indie—burst on the scene. This has been the biggest change in publishing for many years. The standard of books could be so varied when Indie first started, but the quality of books now coming out of Indie publishing is amazing. I’m one of the authors who thinks this change is a good thing. I love the diversity of Indie publishing. The enthusiasm of the authors, for what they are doing, and the way in which they are doing it. I love it so much that I decided to write an Indie series myself. And I love it. The whole process of it, from writing the book to having the covers designed, to seeing the very first book in my very own series, Christmas Alpha, uploaded and ready for preorder, with a publishing date of November 8th.
I’m still busy writing for Harlequin, in both Presents and Regency, so I guess I’m now what’s called a ‘hybrid’ author—I write for a traditional publishing but also my own Indie series.
Q. What do you think will happen to the publishing market in future?
I think everyone is asking themselves that same question. I doubt anyone imagined that Indie would take off in the way that it has, that most people believed it was a bubble that would burst. Instead it’s just grown bigger, and better and now I’ve joined them with my new series. Wherever publishing goes in the future, I’m sure that authors will want to continue writing and having their books published, however and wherever they can, and hoping, always hoping, that the readers will buy and enjoy reading them.
You can find Carole Mortimer at facebook: www.facebook.com/CaroleMortimerAuthor
email: [email protected]