Aug 30, 2017
Interview with Andrea Bolter
A big LoveCat welcome to you Andrea, it’s fabulous to have you join us here today. Grab a glass of something lovely and bubbly, help yourself to a delicious cyber snack, and pull up a banana lounge. We’re always so excited to chat to a brand new author. Can you tell us a little about your journey to publication with Harlequin Mills & Boon?
Hi Michelle and LoveCats! I’m so happy to be joining you. And so excited for my debut with Harlequin Mills & Boon. To tell you about me, my background is in journalism. After about 250 articles and a couple of awards, I decided the time was now or never to fulfil my lifelong dream of publishing fiction. Back in my 20s, I had written an “artsy” literary novel that agents and publishers loved, yet no one bought! I wrote a screenplay that “we enjoyed but have no interest in pursuing.” I did publish a couple of short romance stories in a women’s magazine. When I firmly decided that I wanted to write series romance novels, I read at least 100 Mills & Boons in a row, and then felt ready to try my hand at one. I got very lucky because HER NEW YORK BILLIONAIRE was my first manuscript, and it sold on my first submission.
With all of that "homework" behind you, I doubt luck had anything to do with it! So...Her New York Billionaire is your debut romance. It’s no secret that I love the Romance line (Forever in Australia/New Zealand, Cherish in the UK), but can you tell us what drew you to write for this particular line, and what it is that you love about it?
Although I’d read Mills & Boon along with other romances for years, when I did that concentrated reading of all those books in a row, those in the Romance series were always the ones that I enjoyed the most. So it was only natural to write one. I think what I love is the zoomed-in lens on the hero and heroine. They are together on almost every page, and all of my attention is focused on their journey to each other. Their need for one another is so obvious it’s almost desperate, and I get swept up in that emotional intensity.
Is there a particular incident or inspiration that led to the writing of Her New York Billionaire? And what’s your favourite scene in the book? Would you like to share a (shortish) snippet?
There’s a phrase I had in my head, “There are eight million stories in the naked city tonight. This has been one of them.” (I looked it up and it’s from a 1950s television show called Naked City.) That made me think about how you can walk down a street in Manhattan and point up to any apartment window, and wonder what drama is taking place within those walls. That inspired me to create a story that begins when two strangers both think they have use of the same apartment for the night. I live in Los Angeles, also a populated place, but for some reason the image of peering into a New York apartment window sparked this tale (maybe because I’m nosy)! Here’s a snoop into Holly and Ethan’s first evening together:
Surely Ethan wouldn’t mind if she took one shiny red apple.
Holly hoisted herself up to sit on the countertop. Let her legs and bare feet dangle. She smiled remembering the apple’s symbolism here in New York. Like so many others, she was here to take her bite.
With one satisfying chomp after the next, her mind wandered about what might be.
“Miss Motta!” Ethan looked startled to find her sitting on the kitchen counter after he finished his call. “Must you always make yourself so...so comfortable?”
Holly shrugged her shoulders and slid off the countertop. Whatever. If her sitting on the counter was a big deal to him, she wouldn’t do it.
She jutted out her chin. “I bet you haven’t eaten.”
“Not since early this afternoon on the flight,” he confessed. “Is there food?”
“Looks like there’s eggs and some things for breakfast.”
“We will have something delivered.”
“Sounds good to me.”
“What would you like?”
“You know what? I haven’t been to New York in years. Want to get some famous New York pizza?”
“Pizza it is.” He swiped on his tablet. “Yes, Giuseppe’s. I ordered from there quite a bit when I was last in New York, working on a project. What type of pizza do you like?”
It was nice of him to let her choose. This man was a bundle of contradictions. Scolding one minute, courteous in the next.
“Everything,” she answered, without having to think twice.
“You know—pepperoni, sausage, salami, mushrooms, onions, peppers, olives. The whole shebang.”
“Everything...” he repeated. “Why not?”
“I’ll pay for my half.”
His mouth twitched.
“Twenty minutes,” he read out the online confirmation.
She eyed the kitchen clock.
“I guess I’m staying tonight.” She crunched on her big apple.
A bolt of lightning struck, flashing bright light through the window.
Who are your favourite contemporary romance writers (we’re all devout romance readers here so I’m just going to take it for granted that like the majority of us you love Jane Austen, the Bronte sisters, and Georgette Heyer :))?
Well, I’m going to break romance ranks and tell you that it was actually the Stephanie Plum mysteries by Janet Evanovich that changed my life. Something about the experience of those books…so fun and funny and fast and vivid, with crazy secondary characters and wild situations and two yummy men all in the mix. I’ll admit that I eventually moved on, but I found the first dozen or so in that series so entertaining, they are what inspired me to write a so-called “genre” novel. Also, I feel that I’ve been deeply influenced by romantic comedy movies. Is there a more exquisitely drawn romance than “When Harry Met Sally” or “Four Weddings and a Funeral” or “It Happened One Night?” And I’ll just say two more words on the topic of favourite writers. Nora. Roberts.
And finally, we love pets of all shapes and sizes here at the LoveCats. Do any furred or feathered friends share your life…or maybe you have plans for one to grace the pages of an upcoming book?
I don’t know if this is true where all of you readers are, but it’s great to be a dog in L.A. at this particular moment in time. It’s really only in the past couple of years that I’ve started to notice dogs EVERYWHERE. Inside restaurants, markets, hospitals and even offices, no longer left in a hot car while the driver is off having all the fun. I don’t know if something “officially” changed, but lately bow wows have just about the same rights as all citizens in my wonderful melting pot of a city. As to including animals in future romances, much like a man with a baby, a hero who is good to his pet is hard to resist!
Andrea is giving away a signed copy of Her New York Billionaire to one lucky reader (winner's choice of either the North American edition or the 2-in-1 UK edition that also features The Waitress's Secret by Kathy Douglass). To go into the draw just tell us if, given the chance, you'd like to spend a week in New York.
Andrea's debut Romance is a September release! But it's on the shelves now in Australia (so you can go and grab the two-in-one with me! :-) ).
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