Author Spotlight Q&A
Describe yourself in one word:
What is your background with regard to writing?
I got my love of reading from my mother who would send me to the local library when I was probably no older than eight or nine, to borrow her some Mills and Boon romances. But my first foray into ‘real’ reading was The Black Stallion, The Silver Brumby series, The Secret Garden and loads of Enid Blyton books (Wishing Chair adventures was one of my favs). It didn’t take long to go from those books to romances in all its genres, though to this day I still love reading YA (and have started writing one too between my other works). It seemed a natural progression to go from reading to writing, especially as I was jotting down stories anyway. To this day I still remember visiting my auntie whose dream it was to publish with harlequin. She’d always be at her typewriter, banging out words.
When did you first begin writing with a view of embarking on a career as a published author?
I wrote a manuscript and sent it off to Harlequin in my late teens. It was no doubt a hot mess (wish I’d kept it!) But it wasn’t until I joined Romance Writers of Australia that I learned very quickly how to write by sending to comps, finding critique partners and joining an online critique group. Talk about invaluable advice!
Tell us a little more about Yours To Uncover:
It’s the guilt of my heroine, Rita, having to leave behind her parents to find a better life on new planet, it’s the self-disgust of my hero, Tristan, who believes he killed his wife and unborn child and whose only good in life is being able to paint the journey to Solitaire, the new world. But the love between Rita and Tristan is undeniable, a love that just might get them both killed.
Yours To Uncover is set in the year 2202 with an ever-aging, polluted and over-populated Earth slowly heading toward extinction. The central character, Rita, has spent much of her life trying to flee Earth for Unity, the new colony. What inspired such a dramatic setting?
It was actually the brainchild of Shona Husk (she’s written book 2 of the sci-fi series continuity, Denise Rossetti has written book 3). She had an idea for a hot sci-fi (without the aliens) and asked me if I was interested. Hell yeah! We all got together on Skype and exchanged many emails to build the world and get things right in our heads. (it’s amazing how the simplest things can go wrong – like who is on what level of the ship.) It was pretty easy for me to then imagine my characters and what they might have gone through on an Earth that’s gone to shit.
Once on the Earth Ship Siren, Rita meets and promptly falls for tough and brutish prisoner, Tristan, a move that sparks passion and obstacles for them both. As an author, what’s the appeal of making your characters fight so hard for love/romance?
If there was no conflict the story would be over all too quickly and my readers would be yawning lol! But seriously, I love making my characters bleed a little inside, before they finally get their Happily Ever After. The bigger the odds, the greater the story =)
What one character trait will most endear Rita and Tristan to readers?
Rita is outwardly tough but inwardly she wants the same as most women – to love and be loved in return. Tristan has been through hell and back but he still finds room in his heart for Rita. And he can’t fight the deep attraction he feels for her.
One thing you’d like readers to know about the romance genre…
That you just can’t beat a love story and a Happily Ever After. What’s not to love about that? =)
If you weren’t writing, what would you be doing?
Biggest accomplishment to date:
Marrying my husband and bringing up my three wonderful girls. Career-wise, it’s being published after years of working on my craft.
What’s next for you?
I want to write some single title books (have one under consideration now) and work hard on building up my name.
Favourite snack whilst writing?
What advice would you give your 16-year-old self?
He’s not worth it.
What do you find easiest to write? And, the hardest?
Easiest: action scenes (comes naturally). Hardest: love scenes (so difficult to make them romantic, hot and emotional).
Favourite travel experience?
Going to the USA a long time ago, as well as Mexico and Hawaii.
Number one thing to do on your bucket list:
Milk, dark or white chocolate?
Milk chocolate, with a particular fondness for Hazelnut.
Red, white, bubbly?
Salty or sweet?
Sweet followed closely by salty LOL
Beach or mountains?
Ohhh, difficult, love them both! Possibly mountains first (I live at foothills of some and there’s something magical about them)
Give or receive?
About the Author:
As a rather quiet, introverted child, Mel Teshco would never have believed it possible she’d one day be making a living writing hot, erotic stories and meeting so many other wonderful writers. She can most often be found at her computer, giving into her children and/or cats demands and occasionally/often drinking home brew, which brings out her sociable (i.e. loud) side. Her long-suffering husband is still waiting for retirement. She loves hearing from readers and will answer all emails from her firstname.lastname@example.org e-address.
Yours to Uncover
Is she willing to sacrifice everything to keep her secret and her lover safe?
It’s the year 2202. Earth is grossly overpopulated and seriously polluted. Rita Songworth has spent half her twenty-two years trying to escape the dying planet. It’s taken the last five of those years to realize making it in the hard-ass infantry is her only way out, via space transporter Earth Ship Siren.
But the journey to Unity, the new colony, isn’t easy. Rita has to resist an attraction to hard, brutish prisoner, Tristan MacFallan, whose masterful hands create more than the beautiful art he’s been assigned to make. His forbidden touch affects her profoundly and he sees things in her no man ever has before. But obeying Kane, her ex-lover and malicious lieutenant, who is appointed to keeping the prisoners under guard, comes at a high price. Is she willing to sacrifice everything to keep her secret and her lover safe?