Rebecca, welcome to Writers on Reading! Congratulations on your release last month! To Capture Her Heart looks like a fantastic follow-up to A Place in His Heart. (By now, it’s probably pretty obvious that I love artistically matched covers in a series, and I’d have to say yours came out beautifully!)
That makes two of us! As a historical romance writer, do you find yourself reading your genre more often than others? Can you tell us what else speaks to you as you pick your next reading experience?
When I’m writing I do a lot of research so my reading is mainly nonfiction histories and biographies and I’m fascinated by those. When I’m taking a break I love to read historical novels, and if they have romance so much the better! I’m a big fan of Jane Kirkpatrick’s novels and she is an inspiration to me.
Despite the fact that these books are based on your ninth great-grandparents, I imagine a great deal of research went into this series. Between that, and deadlines, do you find time to read during the months you’re writing? If so, what did you read while working on this book? If not, did you treat yourself to a good book, when you sent To Capture Her Heart off to your publisher?
While my reading habits change while I’m in the writing mode, I do love the research I do! While researching for A Place in His Heart and To Capture Her Heart I did read a lot of histories and biographies, and I keep reading that type of nonfiction while I’m writing. Or I might read a writing craft book in the evening. Once I turn the manuscript in I’m ready for a good novel! After I turned To Capture Her Heart in, I read Camille Eide’s Like There’s No Tomorrow, and I really enjoyed it.
Were you the kind of kid/teen who loved reading? Which novel do you first remember reading?
I was! I always was checking out a book from the library, sometimes a stack! As a child, it was The Black Stallion series that really sparked my love of reading. In the ninth grade, I read Wuthering Heights by Emily Bronte, and I discovered a passion for the classics.
When did you know you wanted to write? Did any or multiple books influence this desire?
I took a creative writing class in high school and always knew I wanted to write a novel. I enjoy reading many genres, but I was reading quite a bit of suspense and thought that might be what I would write. But life took a turn when I went with my mother to Long Island to see the lighthouse named after our ancestor, Barnabas Horton. So much information about Barnabas, so little about his wife, Mary. I wanted to give her a voice! And about that time I discovered Jane Kirkpatrick’s A Gathering of Finches. I loved that book! So while I believe my writing has been influenced by my passion for reading most all of my life, Jane Kirkpatrick’s stories of real people, and in particular strong women, set in fiction have been the greatest inspiration to me.
Oh what a very special thing to discover. Sounds like perfect timing. So, aside from Jane's, has any book stuck with you recently? What created the lasting impressions?
The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society. It’s been out awhile of course, but I just recently read it---it is completely charming and is one you want to hug to you after you finish reading it. I love this quote, “I wonder how the book got to Guernsey? Perhaps there is some secret sort of homing instinct in books that brings them to their perfect readers.”
Very special to find a book you feel that way about. Sounds like another to add to our to-read lists. With summer just starting, what is on your to-read list?
I just finished Karen Barnett’s Beyond the Ashes---great story! I want to read Sarah Sundin’s latest, Through Waters Deep---I love her WWII romances! The Girl on the Train, by Paula Hawkins, seems to have everyone abuzz, so I think that is on my list, too!
Indeed it does, sounds like a great list for you this summer! And what is your ideal summer reading experience?
If I find a spare moment during the day to read, you’ll find me on our deck with a view of Mount St. Helen’s, taking a little sun bath! But usually, I like to plump up my pillows and read in bed! There’s a danger in staying up too late, but one I’m willing to risk!
Laughing. Aren’t we all? Is there a book you are looking forward to rereading?
I dream about sitting for hours and rereading many of the classics, but a recent one I’d read again in a minute is Nancy Horan’s Under the Wide Starry Sky.
Thank you so much, Deirdre! I enjoyed the interview!
Thanks for joining us, Rebecca! It was so fun getting to know you as a reader. I know I’ll have more fun reading your books now. Folks, you can continue to connect with Rebecca--and find out more about her books!---at the links after her bio.
Rebecca DeMarino writes love, legends and lore as a historical romance author and lives in the beautiful Pacific Northwest. She inherited her love of baking and gardening from her mother, a love of horses, reading and writing from her dad, and the wanderlust gene from both parents. Her travels have taken her from Alaska to Nebraska and Florida, from Long Island to England and Italy, and from Washington DC to Texas, California and Guam. But usually you can find her at home, enjoying her grandchildren and baking crisp little ginger cakes. From Publisher’s Weekly ~ DeMarino's … strong suit is recreating history and relating it to readers.
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