What prompted you to write that first book? Did you always want to be an author?
I had always written short stories, but I never thought I could write a novel. Then, my short stories kept getting longer and longer, and finally I realized I was working on novel-length stories.
How do you decide which story to write?
My last few stories have been loosely connected, so I usually pick the secondary character in a previous book who calls to me the most.
Can you tell us a little bit about your latest release?
In Her Fill-in Fiance’, Sophia Pirelli comes home for her parents’ anniversary party with some secrets she’s reluctant to share –she’s lost her job, lost her boyfriend, and she’s pregnant. Her troubles only multiply when she arrives home and discovers her family has welcomed Jake Cameron with open arms, unaware that the man she was starting to care for had been hired to learn her secrets.
I loved the unique twist you created in Her Fill-In Fiance. What inspired such a brilliant idea?
Both Jake and Sophia were minor characters in my previous book, Once Upon a Wedding. Jake was a friend of the hero from that book, and Sophia turned out to be the “other woman” and the reason why the wedding Kelsey planned for her cousin didn’t happen.
Even though Sophia never appeared on the page in that book, I knew she wasn’t a bad person 🙂 and that she deserved her own happily ever after. With Jake and Sophia’s backstory already established, it was simply a matter of getting them back together again–and what better way than a pretend relationship?
Do you plot your stories out or do you just start writing?
I’ve always worked off of loose outlines for my books, and now that I’m selling on proposal, I have to have some kind of synopsis for my editor even though I know the book will likely change as I go along.
What was the funniest thing you learned about your hero/heroine from writing their story?
I wrote a scene where my hero said French Toast was his favorite breakfast which is a little weird because I think I’ve only had French Toast once in my life. 🙂
Which of your characters is most like you and which is least like you?
I think all of my characters have some similarities to me. Sophia tends to keep things inside; she doesn’t want to let anyone know her plans because she feels like she’s failed in the past. I can be like that, too, and tend to overthink things.
As a PI, Jake is someone who sits back and observes, and while I am NOT a private investigator :), I do believe most writers like to observe and assess the world around them. Like Jake, I can sometimes hesitate to actually join in and prefer to stay in the background.
Can you describe your office or where you normally write?
I have an office :), but to be honest, I rarely write there. Normally, I work at the kitchen table or maybe on the couch if I can keep from distracting myself by watching too much TV.
Which came first the plot or the characters?
Since these were continuing characters from previous book, I already had the characters in mind, so it was a matter of figuring out why Sophia had left her hometown in the first place and what would happen if she went back and Jake followed her there…
Have you ever gotten stuck while writing a scene or chapter? How did you overcome it?
I do get stuck, and I try the usual tricks–changing point of view or setting or sometimes moving the scene to a different part of the book. I also try to focus on if I really need that scene and if so, what do I want to accomplish with it?
Sometimes by defining the purpose of the scene, I can work my way around the sticking point.
What is the wackiest thing that’s ever happened to you since you started writing?
I don’t know that it’s really that wacky, but I’ve had a couple of people tell me I need to write their life stories at which time I explain that I write fiction–not biographies!
Did you do any research for you book and, if so, did you find any interesting information that you had to include in the story?
I based the location on a friend’s hometown, so I asked her a lot of questions and went on line for photographs. I’d still really like to visit myself to get a genuine feel for the place.
Where can readers find out more about you?
I have a website at http://www.stacyconnelly.com and I also blog at the Harlequin site as part of the Special Edition blog on the 2nd and 4th Wednesdays.
Now available at Amazon and other places that sell books. Bio: Stacy Connelly has dreamed of publishing books since she was a kid writing stories about a girl and her horse. Eventually, boys made it onto the page as she discovered a love of romance and the promise of happily-ever-after.
In 2008, that dream came true when her first book, All She Wants for Christmas, was published by Silhouette Special Edition. Two more books followed, including Once Upon A Wedding which was nominated for Romantic Times Best Special Edition for 2009.
Stacy has sold another two books to Special Edition. Both will be out later in 2011.
When she is not lost in the land of make-believe, Stacy lives inArizonawith her two spoiled dogs.