Author Spotlight: Virginia Taylor
Describe yourself in one word:
What is your background with regard to writing?
Nothing formal. I had an art scholarship but I couldn’t see a way to support myself other than by taking work I didn’t like. Therefore, I started again and trained as a nurse/midwife, which is about as logical as I get. Being an avid reader, I always had various story structures in my head and so when I had done everything else I could think of to put off the inevitable moment, I finally wrote a book. Naturally, as soon as I finished the first, I began the next.
When did you first begin writing with a view of embarking on a career as a published author?
About 20 years ago.
Tell us a little more about Losing Patients:
Long and Short reviews put up Losing Patients for the Best Book of the Month (September).
Losing Patients is Random Romance’s first Romantic Suspense. My heroine, Bree, is a nurse who wants to be a doctor. First, she needs to prove she isn’t involved in a hospital drug theft. Surgeon Sam Vincent might help her if she helps him . . . but since she can’t trust him . . .
Losing Patients is described as a scintillating romantic comedy with a twist of intrigue and a lot of flirtation. With the central characters Bree Branson and Sam Vincent possibly finding love in the hunt for a killer. Whoa—what a diverse and captivating storyline! What sparked this concept for you?
Patients die in hospitals but what if they’re not dying from expected causes? And who is the most likely to be blamed if the death isn’t expected? That was the premise and the rest of the story came with the characters.
What one character trait will most endear both Bree and Sam to your readers?
Sam and Bree are smart and funny, and perfect together, but you can’t imagine how they could stay together, given their various conflicts. Is that one trait?
What kind of research was involved in the planning of Losing Patients? Was there anything surprising that you learned during the research process?
Initially, the story was set in Australia but I couldn’t get any interest in an Aussie romantic suspense. So, I reset the story in the US, whose ways of dispensing drugs are far more automated. Nevertheless, I worked out how to ‘beat the system’ and steal from a programmed machine instead of the key system used in Aus for dangerous drugs. I was very surprised to find I am so well equipped for a life of crime. Fortunately, when Random Romance wanted the story, I got to put the original back together again, which meant my characters could return to the streets and shopping malls I knew. It also means no one will ever learn how to get dangerous drugs out of the US automated system. Whew.
One thing you’d like readers to know about the romance genre…
Just one? The genre is wide and all encompassing and a romance novel can be long or short, basic or convoluted, funny or serious, sexy or sweet, but every single romance contains a happy ending. That’s the main thing I would like readers to know about the romance genre.
If you weren’t writing, what would you be doing?
Something in the painting or decorating line. But I would still be writing because I write even when I’m not writing.
What’s next for you?
I’ve signed a contract with Kensington for a series of South Australian set historical romances, tentatively called The Southlanders. I’m about to send off the third and start writing the fourth. The first will be published in April 2015.
Favourite snack whilst writing?
None. I don’t like foody fingers.
What advice would you give your 16-year-old self?
Give in occasionally, just to fool them, hey?
What do you find easiest to write? And, the hardest?
Fiction is the easiest to write. Begging letters are the hardest.
Favourite travel experience?
Kangaroo Island in spring is easily the most beautiful place in the world.
Number one thing to do on your bucket list:
All done now.
Milk, dark or white chocolate? Dark.
Red, white, bubbly? I like them all, but I’m not really a recreational drinker.
Salty or sweet? Yes.
Beach or mountains? I prefer the flat country inland.
Give or receive? Both. I hope my children read this and see the ‘receive’ part.
About the Author:
After training at the South Australian School of Art, Virginia accepted a job with an advertising agency in the art department. Not interested in that particular corporate ladder, she moved on, variously working as a product stylist and an interior designer until she trained as a nurse/midwife, which is about the only non-arty move she ever made. However, this was the best move she ever made because that’s how she met the man of her dreams, whom she married almost on the spot. She had two children, worked part time as a midwife and, in the meantime having learnt basket weaving, leatherwork, spinning, weaving, dyeing, and every doggone thing she could think of to keep herself busy, she finally began writing romance. Over the years Virginia has been a set painter and designer, and is currently reworking a garden for a National Trust home.
A scintillating romantic suspense novel with a twist of intrigue and a lot of flirtation. Can true love be found in the hunt for a killer?
It’s Bree Branson’s first day at Pemberton Private Hospital and the last thing she needs is a patient dying in suspicious circumstances on her watch. The only person who can help her clear her name is the one person she was hoping to avoid, the devastatingly handsome Sam Vincent . . . the doctor she stood up three years ago. Forced to work together to find a killer, will Bree and Sam be able to leave their past behind to find a future together?