Friday, March 16, 2012

Interview with Catherine Mann

I’d like to welcome our guest today, Catherine Mann. 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 PROTECTOR. Can you tell us a little bit about your fabulous new book?

CM: PROTECTOR continues my “Dark Ops” series about a top secret Air Force squadron of aviators who test the latest technology. This story features Chuck Tanaka, an aviator who was captured and tortured. He thinks his days in the field are over due to his injuries…until he’s drawn in by a mission in the Mediterranean and a mob boss’ daughter.

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

CM: The heroine – a mob boss’ daughter – doesn’t know her life is in danger. The hero finds that even with his battle scars, he’s still every bit the honed warrior/protector.

Would you describe your book as a cozy, mystery, suspense, or thriller?

CM: Action/Suspense

What made you decide to write in this genre?

CM: I love to read steamy, action, suspense novels and I’m a military spouse. All of those elements blend into the stories that come to me.

Where did you get your idea for this particular book?

CM: I saw a river boat casino and my imagination took flight.

Do you have all the key suspense/mystery elements thought out before you begin writing?

CM: I have a synopsis written before I start a book, so major plot points and characters are set. The scenes come to me as I write and I always write in order.

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

CM: My husband is an Air Force aviator. A good bit of my research comes from talking to him or interviewing other military individuals we know.

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?

CM: I usually start by deciding on a quirk for a character and the character develops from there as I brainstorm. For example, I once wrote a military heroine, very crisp aviator, who collected Beanie Babies.

Do you have any authors that inspired you?

CM: Lori Foster, Suzanne Brockmann, Susan Elizabeth Phillips, Sherrilyn Kenyon.

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

CM: I enjoy directly interacting with readers at conferences and on the internet. Is it the most effective? I don’t know. I just know that I draw great joy from visiting with them, discussing other books and generally having fun hanging out.

What do we have to look forward next?

HONORABLE INTENTIONS, Harlequin Desire, April
UNDER FIRE, Sourcebooks, May
“Dog Tags” in LOVE BITES, HQN, June

Thanks, Catherine!

CM: Thank, YOU! I appreciate your having me here for the day.

To celebrate her book release, PROTECTOR is offering a free book of PROTECTOR 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...

USA Today bestseller Catherine Mann writes military romantic suspense for Berkley and Sourcebooks, as well as steamy romances for Harlequin Desire. A RITA Award winner, she has over two million books in print in more than 20 countries. Catherine resides in Florida with her Air Force aviator husband and their four children. FMI, she can be found online at:


Anonymous said...

Good morning Catherine. Thanks for joining us here today. I still have some girl scout cookies left that I hid from the kids so I'll put them out in a minute. I hope you like the chocolate peanut butter ones. Protector sounds like a great book. I think every gal needs someone to look after her. :) What does your typical day look like? Since you right for different publishers, how do you keep everything straight? Enjoy your day with us and let me know if you need anything.

Erin Quinn said...

Hi Catherine! Great interview. Protector sounds awesome. I'm wiht Kim, how DO you keep it all straight??

Carolyn Hughey said...

Hi Catherine. Very interesting interview. I write contemporary and mystery, and find myself more drawn to mystery because I like the intrigue. I've not read your work before, but your book sounds intriguing and I'm looking forward to reading it.

I think it's a hoot that you developed a story based on the floating casino you saw. We writers are definitely a breed onto our own. :-)

Catherine Mann said...

Hi Kim! I'm chiming in late here today - my oldest daughter eloped this week, so I've been a weee bit scatterbrained, lol! We're choosing announcements now - so fun!!

I'm putting my feet up for now and playing online. I ADORE girl scout cookies - especially thin mints after they've been in the freezer. :)

Interesting question about keeping things straight while writing for three publishers. Sometimes it gets a little crazy, but I have pretty detailed notes on the characters and I keep copies of all the books within arm's reach so I can thumb through if I want to refresh my memory on the sound of a particular character's voice. And honestly, it's fun to move from project to project - keeps my mind fresh! (I hope!)

Thanks again for having me here today!

Catherine Mann said...

Hey there, Erin! How do I keep it straight? I think women are hard wired to be multi-taskers. It's like keeping everything straight for my four kids.... the different story worlds are like adding more kids into the mix for me. :)

Catherine Mann said...

Good afternoon, Carolyn! It is interesting swapping from writing romances to romantic suspense. I like to think the two genres help me hone different skills that carry over. Focusing on just a romantic storyline can help up the emotional connection (and stakes) in a suspense. And I like to add action elements to my romances as well.... couple being chased by the press, heroine scaling a building ledge to get a photo of a hot prince. I think like any author, I'm learning something new every day, and hope I continue to keep on learning!! :)

~Laurie~Kozlowski~ said...

Great interview! I enjoyed Hot Zone and hope to be the winner of Protector! Thanks for your wonderful writing Catherine!

bookworm54 said...

Hi! Catherine! I love to follow your blogs, its one way of getting to you know you! Its springbreak around here(Wakulla County,fla.) love to win this book so I can it to the beach or anywhere, always love your books. They are so intense and of course a hunk for a hero!The best kind is somone in the arm reading about them,too! Have a great weekend!

Cindy K. said...

Nice interview and I would love to win a copy of Protector. I love to read action/suspense with romance thrown in. I have a few of your books sitting in my TBR pile right now and can't wait to get to them.

Donna Del Grosso said...

Hi Catherine!
Nice interview. I love hearing how other writers come up with their ideas then turn them into a novel. Good luck with Protector, it sounds great!

Catherine Mann said...

Thank YOU, Laurie, for the lovely words!! Brought a smile to my facce. ;)

Catherine Mann said...

Hey there, Carole! Hope you have a stellar spring break!!

Kathleen O said...

I love Catherine's books and can't get enough of her Fly Boys...
Thanks for the giveaway....

Catherine Mann said...

Hey there, Cindy K! I love to read action/suspense too - I have quite a TBR list loaded on my Kindle. ;)

Catherine Mann said...

Thank you, Donna!!! XXOO!!

Catherine Mann said...

Kathleen O, you are so awesome!! Thank you!!

CrystalGB said...

Great interview. Protector sounds awesome. I love the cover.

Linda Andrews said...

The books sounds wonderful! How much do you write a day to create that many books?

liana laverentz said...

Love those dark ops stories! I think we're inspired by the same authors :)
All the best,

Donna Hatch, romance author said...

I don't typically read a lot of action/suspense, but my son just joined the Air Force so those boys have a new special place in my heart.

Connie Flynn said...

Hi Catherine,

Action/suspense is one of my favorites and reading your interview reminded me of that. I adore the same authors you do and want to thank you for stopping by our blog. Come back any time.

Maureen said...

Hi Catherine,
I'm wondering if all your stories feature military heroes or heroines or if you have written other types of characters.

Maude said...

Can't wait to read this one.

Estella said...

Love action/suspense books!

Catherine Mann said...

Crystal - Thanks for the cover kudos!! The guy on the cover sure is a hottie. ;)

Linda, my page count depends on what part of the book I'm writing. The beginnings are slower for me (maybe 5 pages a day) and then by the end, the pages flow faster, thank goodness.

Hi Liana and Connie - How fun that we enjoy the same authors!! We have good taste, don'tcha think?! ;)

Donna, many thanks to your son for his service!!

Maureen, great question! I also write for Harlequin Desire and most of those characters are not military. And even when the Desire character are military, the story tends to focus more on their lives outside of work.

Thank you, Maude! Hope you enjoy it!

:::waving:::: Hi Estella!

Thanks, everyone, for stopping by today!! And many thanks for having me here. :)

JeanneM said...

Hi Kathy,

Good interview! I can't wait to read this book!

Na said...

I like how you develop your characters in that they first have a quirk. For me, the most memorable characters are those that have something unique to them, even a small thing. I can also see that some of you favorite authors write in various genres and I think this will show in your stories :)

donnas said...

Congrats on the new release! Im looking forward to reading it.

bn100 said...

Congratulations on the book! It sounds very good.