Hey there! Recently, I had the pleasure of interviewing the fabulous Marie Lavender, a wonderful multi-genre author of 21 books, including her most recent rom-com Chasing Ginger. I enjoyed learning more about her influences and opinions and hope you will too!
Getting to Know Marie Lavender:
Q: Are there any books or authors that have influenced your writing?
Marie Lavender: Quite a few, I imagine. I was inspired by Nora Roberts’ method of not holding back, to tell the story despite how shocking the details might be. I love J.R. Ward’s Black Dagger Brotherhood series. Though I can’t guarantee I’ll ever capture her approach to urban fantasy in my own work, the books certainly made me think about vampires in a different way.
But even before all that, I remember reading bodice rippers by Catherine Coulter or Rosemary Rogers at the age of sixteen, and thinking, “Whoa…that’s not my idea of romance.” Yet, now we have darker tales on the market which continue to be acceptable.
I guess in some ways, I don’t hold back, either. If there’s a story to tell – even if a theme makes me cringe as a person – as a writer I will figure out a way to put it on the page so that readers can see the world that I do.
Still, if the story is about romance, I will eventually return to my roots, why I fell in love with the genre in the first place.
About Marie Lavender
Multi-genre author of Victorian maritime romance/family saga, Heiresses in Love, and 18 other books. Marie Lavender lives in the Midwest with her family and two cats. She has been writing for a little over twenty-five years. She has more works in progress than she can count on two hands.
Since 2010, Marie has published 21 books in the genres of historical romance, contemporary romance, romantic suspense, paranormal romance, romantic comedy, dramatic fiction, fantasy, science fiction, mystery/thriller, literary fiction and poetry. An avid blogger on the side, she writes adult fiction, as well as occasional stories for children, and has recently started some young adult fiction. She also contributed to several anthologies.
Though Marie has standalone titles on the market, her current published series are The Eternal Hearts Series, The Magick Series, The Code of Endhivar Series, The Misfits Series and The Blood at First Sight Series, but she has many others planned. Her Victorian maritime romance series is returning, and the second editions of the trilogy will be released soon under her new publisher, Foundations Books.
Q: I noticed that you write in many different genres and across a variety of time periods. What comes first for you when developing these stories, the genre, the plot, the characters, the setting, or something else?
ML: Sometimes an object draws me in – a magical mirror or a special locket. And though I place a huge emphasis on my characters, the plot equally drives the story forward. I guess for me, it just depends on the project. All these elements arrive at different sequences, and I’m surprised by each one.
Q: If you could live in any time, past, present or future, which would you choose?
ML: In the past, for sure. I’ve always been obsessed with various time periods, whether the Victorian era, the Middle Ages, or some similarly fascinating age. If the Doctor came around with his Tardis and asked me to hop on, I wouldn’t hesitate!
Q: Has the Coronavirus pandemic changed your writing?
ML: My creativity was affected by it. I think it has been such a dramatic event, it was difficult to not let it take over everything. I suffered a bit of a block, I must admit. Only when I went away recently to a family rental at a lake did I have a chance to let the muse have free reign again.
About the Series:
Q: Can you tell readers a bit about Chasing Ginger?
ML: This book is my way of confronting the social problem of body-shaming. Having struggled with weight issues most of my life, I could identify with the main character too. It was also fun to try my hand at romantic comedy.
Title: Chasing Ginger
Author: Marie Lavender
Series: The Misfits (Book 1)
Page Length: 444
Publication Date: March 6, 2020
Synopsis: Chased by a group of angry men. Saved by quite a hunk.
This is not the résumé Ginger Halloway ever imagined having. But thanks to a miracle pill, which makes her size 22 body instantly sexy, that’s what happened.
Yet, now Lance Franklin is showing interest in her, and she can’t figure out if he really likes her for her, or if it’s just because of a bizarre drug.
And her wild bunch of friends, The Misfits…well, they’re always getting her into some interesting situations.
So, yep, business as usual. Except for the guy. What the hell should she do about him?
As for Lance, he believes he’s lucky to have found Ginger. But can he convince her they should go for it?
With some new attention from the hottest guy she’s ever met, Ginger can’t help but wonder…is this all too good to be true?
(CONTENT WARNING: Watch for foul language, steamy scenes, and a pesky yet messy ability to choke on your dinner while laughing. If you’ve come expecting just a lighthearted, slapstick romance, you may not get that here. The author approaches sensitive topics in the best way she knows how. Just be prepared for all the feels to be deeper than usual for this genre – an emotional romantic comedy. No unruly cliffhangers, HEA guaranteed.)
Q: If you had to describe the protagonist in three words, what would they be?
ML: Multitalented, musical, and charming.
Q: What do you hope readers will take away from Chasing Ginger?
ML: Maybe they’ll think twice the next time they try to judge someone based on appearance alone. Perhaps even be a little nicer to themselves as well. The words we say in our heads can cause more damage than we imagine.
Q: What’s next for The Misfits Series?
ML: Actually, I have plans for five more books in the series – each centered on a friend in the group, and their romantic misadventures.
Q: If you were writing a book about your life, what would the title be?
ML: Amidst the Chaos
Q: Where can readers learn more about you and your work (i.e., website, Twitter, Facebook page, Goodreads, etc.)?
ML: They can follow me at any of the links below.
Official Website: http://marielavender.com/
Social Media: https://www.instagram.com/marielavender1 https://www.facebook.com/marie.lavender.58
Amazon author page: http://bit.ly/MarieLavender
Goodreads Author Page: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/6938764.Marie_Lavender
Universal Reading List links: https://books2read.com/rl/marielavendersbooks https://books2read.com/ap/xrv162/Marie-Lavender http://authorsdb.com/authors-directory/1578-marie-lavender http://marielavender1.allauthor.com/ https://www.booksradar.com/lavender-marie/lavender.html http://www.pw.org/content/marie_lavender https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCJu8HjRVYCFOqcIoX6ZxdqQ/videos
Sign up for Marie’s Newsletter: http://bit.ly/1g3wO13
Follow her on BookBub for new release updates: https://www.bookbub.com/authors/marie-lavender
Fan mail email: firstname.lastname@example.org
This was such a fun interview, and I love what Marie says about being kinder to ourselves. I know that I am often my own worst critic, and I love that her rom-com addresses relevant and relatable issues.
Don’t forget to check out Chasing Ginger today!
BOOK PURCHASE LINK: Universal reader link: https://books2read.com/ChasingGinger