Today is all about Elizabeth McKenna’s latest novel, Venice in the Moonlight. It has a striking cover, which caught my eye in combination with the title. She’s here today to chat – so grab your favorite tasty treat and enjoy!
Thank you for your interview today. Can you tell readers a little about yourself?
Sure. I’m a mom, a wife, and a full-time technical writer/editor. I grew up in a mid-size city on Lake Michigan in Wisconsin. I now live in a small village on a small lake (still in Wisconsin). I seem to be downsizing as I get older!
What does a typical day for you look like?
I get up at 4:30am and exercise with my husband. I have two teenage daughters that get up around 6am and are off to school by 7am. I telecommute, so I am at my home office desk by 7am and usually work until 3:30pm. I try to get some fiction writing in before suppertime, but my girls, who are active in sports year round, often have an away game or some other school event that I need to rush off to. If we have a free night, I usually spend it with the family watching the DVR, which seems to be constantly 80% full of recorded shows despite our best efforts!
Where do you like to write?
I like to write on our screened in porch, but living in Wisconsin, that only happens a few months out of the year. I am usually in my home office.
What inspired you to become a writer?
I’ve always loved to read. I love the emotions a story can pull from you. I love escaping into an unfamiliar land or time period. I love interesting characters that become like my friends. I am grateful for all the authors who create such wonderful stories and I wanted to try to give the same thing to other readers.
Who are a few of your favorite authors? What are a few of your favorite books?
In the Romance genre, I’ve always liked Nora Roberts, but she’s been a bit off lately. I read a lot of Stephen King when I was younger. I remember I only got through half of Salem’s Lot because I got so scared. I read a lot of YA now that I have teenagers. I loved the Hunger Games, liked the Divergent series except for the ending, and really liked the first Twilight book. I am very excited for The Infinite Sea: The Second Book of the 5th Wave series. My all-time favorite, though, is still the Harry Potter series. Absolutely brilliant in my opinion.
What is the craziest thing that’s ever happened to you?
That’s a tough one. Probably marrying my husband. I fell in love with him when I was sixteen, but we never dated until we were in our late twenties. Back in my foolish teenage years, I used to wish on a star every night that he’d love me. I still can’t believe I got my wish.
What inspired you to write Venice in the Moonlight?
I spent a few weeks traveling in Italy with my husband. I found Venice to be very romantic, even in its decaying state. I didn’t want to write a regency set in London, so I chose Venice. After I researched the history of the city, the story started to fall into place.
Could you tell us a little about your main character, Marietta?
She’s had a hard life even though she’s only twenty, but she’s a fighter. She is determined to survive on her own skills, though she still wants to find true love and have a family.
What fascinates you to write about this particular time in history?
The Enlightenment was going on in 1753. People were questioning tradition, the Church, and their royal rulers. Scientific thinking and skepticism were growing. I thought it would be a good time period for a woman to try to make it on her own without relying on a husband she didn’t love.
Do you have any books in the works?
I am working on a contemporary romance right now tentatively titled First Crush. Here is the blurb:
Remember your first crush? How your heart raced and your cheeks flushed whenever you saw him? Jessie Baxter does, and it’s happening all over again at her high school reunion. Lee Archer is The One Who Got Away. Despite Jessie’s best efforts, he wanted to be only friends. Fifteen years later, things are different. Lee wants more, but first Jessie has to unload some baggage—the biggest one being a psycho ex-husband. Will Jessie learn to trust again and make her first crush into her last love? Elizabeth McKenna’s latest novel will have you remembering the angst of high school, the grief of a failed relationship, and the happiness of true love.
What are your future goals as a writer?
Someday – perhaps when my girls are out of college – I would like to write fiction full time. I enjoy it so much more than technical writing, but technical writing pays the bills. So, until then, I will plug along writing fiction when my life lets me!
Title: Venice in the Moonlight
Author: Elizabeth McKenna
Release Date: October 2013
Length: 194 pages
About the Author
Elizabeth McKenna works as a full-time technical writer/editor for a large software company. Though her love of books reaches back to her childhood, she had never read romance novels until one Christmas when her sister gave her the latest bestseller by Nora Roberts. She was hooked from page one (actually, she admits it was the first love scene). She had always wanted to write fiction, so she combined her love of history, romance and a happy ending to write her debut novel Cera’s Place. Her short story, The Gypsy Casts a Spell, is available for free on her websitehttp://elizabethmckenna.com/. She hopes you will enjoy her latest novel, Venice in the Moonlight, as much as others have enjoyed her previous works.
Elizabeth lives in Wisconsin with her understanding husband, two beautiful daughters, and a sassy Labrador. When she isn’t writing, working, or being a mom, she’s sleeping.