Friday, October 29, 2010

Interview with Wendy Ely

I’d like to welcome our guest today, Wendy Ely. It’s a pleasure having you come visit us at Much Cheaper Than Therapy, where chocolate is plentiful and advice is free. So grab some chocolate and a lounge chair. Your therapy session has begun.

I understand you have a new release out called Midnight Secrets. Can you tell us a little bit about your fabulous new book?

Will Miguel’s whispered midnight promises ever see the light of day?

Content with her job as small town waitress and roll of single mom, Allison believes she's better off without a man. In her opinion, all they bring is chaos - and that includes the father of her child. So why has Miguel’s arrival shaken her so badly?

It's not easy for Allison to keep Miguel a secret with someone set on shutting down her bakery and the local sheriff believing she harbors a vendetta against the town because of her tormented past.

Keeping her secrets and clearing her name just might be harder than Allison ever imagined.

Midnight Secrets is a very interesting title. How did you arrive at that name?

Midnight Secrets is the second book in The Desert Secret Series so I wanted to find a title that related to secrets. Since Miguel sneaks into Allison’s house during the night, the title seemed perfect

What made you decide to write in this genre?

I’ve always (yep, even as a young teenager) been drawn to the contemporary love story. Nothing feels better than the reminder of the happily-ever-after so my books have them.

Are you a plotter or a pantser and how did it affect the writing of this book?

I’m a pantser. I did try plotting the first book in this series since it is a romantic suspense. I even made note cards to help organize each scene. Once the plotting was done and I sat down to write the novel, the story had already been told in my brain. I couldn’t write it. Fed up with the writer’s block, I threw the cards away and stared at the blinking cursor against the blank white computer screen. The words started flying through my finger tips as I embraced the pantser side of my creativity. I haven’t tried changing my process since then.

Did you have to do a lot of research for the book? What are your favorite research books or sites?

I did do a lot of research for Midnight Secrets. I consulted with specialists in the field I was researching which included a scientist, a few midwives, and a cop. My favorite way to research is interviewing professionals in the field. By talking with the people, I cut down the time spent on researching because I get to ask them exactly what I need to know instead of sift through hours of useless information to find one answer.

Where did you get your idea for this particular book?

The idea kind of evolved from the heroine. Allison was a background character in Confession but happened to have such a strong personality that she needed her own story. I took what I knew about her from the first book and the idea grew from that.

Which character did you like writing about the most, and why?

I like all of the characters in Midnight Secrets but Allison is my favorite. She struggled a lot with being a single mom and dependent on her family even though she hated every second of it. Although I had to be dependent from my family, I could understand how she would feel. Besides that, Allison’s experiences my deep fear where the children are concerned.

Tell us about how you develop your characters. Do you create character sheets, do interviews, that sort of thing? How does your research affect your character development?

I do character sheets and interviews but when I start a story most of the prewriting stuff is blank. I find out much more information as I’m writing the book. When I wrote Confessions, I had no idea Allison was a basketball player for her high school. It wasn’t until I was working on a scene in Midnight Secrets that I figured it out. The research helps define the character’s personalities but I already have an idea who the character is.

Do you have any authors that inspired you?

Rachel Gibson inspires me. I love her style. I’ve also learned a lot from reading James Patterson books.

What do you feel is the most effective promotion you have done for your book?

I think that the best promoting thing I’ve done is just getting myself out there and making new friends with both readers and authors. I don’t want people to know me only when a new book is out but all year long.

What do we have to look forward next?

A romantic thriller titled New Year’s Resolution. It’ll be released by Captiva Press sometime soon.

Thanks, Wendy!

To celebrate her book release, Wendy is offering a free book of Midnight Secrets to one lucky commenter on today's blog. (please check the blog Monday night to see if you won. Chances of winning determined by the number of entries.)

She will be around all day today. I'm sure some of you have questions or comments for her, so please ask away...

Check out author’s website at


Anonymous said...

Good morning Wendy. Thanks for joining us today. Your pre-Halloween chocolate will be available as soon as I pry it out of the kids hands. Like yourself, when it comes to research, I also like to speak to someone in the field to bring more authenticity to the book. I'll even go as far as to send them any sections for review to make sure I've gotten it right. Enjoy your day.

Jocelyn Modo said...

HI Wendy!

I enjoyed your interview and would like to be entered into the contest to receive a free copy of your book.



Sondrae Bennett said...

Midnight Secrets sounds like a great read! I'm more of a pantser myself although I do plan a bit. I've had the same, almost exact, experience when I tried a 100% plan approach too. Please count me in for the contest.

Carolyn Hughey said...

Great interview, Wendy. I've loved this story from the moment you described the story to me. Good job!

Estella said...

I love romantic suspense!
Midnight Secrets sounds great.

Tia Dani said...

Hi Wendy, Nice interview and I find it very interesting to see how you write. I am one of the writers that need to plot a story out otherwise I ramble all over the place. And especially since I'm a team writer now, we find it is necessary to have a map to follow.
I know you are a busy lady, do you have a writing schedule you follow or do you just grab time when you can?
Really looking forward to your thriller.


Wendy_Ely said...

Thanks so much for letting me visit Much Cheaper Than Therapy, Kim! It was a blast doing on interview with you :)

Tia Dani~ I don't have a schedule for writing anymore. I grab time whenever I can since I have the kids, school, the boyfriend, and the new job!

Tina said...

Thank you for stopping by MCTT, Wendy!

So good to see you here.
Good luck with your career.