Hi Karen and welcome. I am so glad you could join us here at
RomanceJunkies. To start, will you please tell us a little bit about your current projects?
Hi Brooke. I'm so pleased to be here. Last November, my historical romantic suspense novel BETRAYAL was released. In the story:
To save her son and people from a deadly enemy, Lady Katherine Stanfield marries her former betrothed. A man she'd betrayed, but has never stopped loving. Katherine has never revealed her reason for the betrayal, and now, five years later, she believes her secret is safe.
But someone won't let the past rest. Someone with a secret of his own. Now she must stop that "someone" because he wants Katherine and her new husband dead.
I enjoyed writing Katherine and Nicholas's story very much.
Do you remember what your first "real" writing project was? Did you write it out by hand or use some other method?
Oh, yes! My first writing project was an attempt to write a Nancy Drew mystery. I was ten years old and wrote on three -hole punch paper like what I used for my school work. When I finished writing each day, I remember storing the pages very carefully in a small green suitcase. I don't know why I remember that so vividly, but I do.
How do come up with the names for your characters? At what point in the writing process do they get their names?
I name my characters right away. They don't become "real" to me until they have a name. About how I come up with the names, I don't know. I'm just glad that when I need a name, I get it!
What was the one piece of advice you received you wished you had listened to sooner?
Oh, boy, if there was only one! LOL. I suppose as far as the writing process goes, it would have to be to allow yourself to write a terrible first draft. Too often writers become discouraged when what we actually write in a first draft doesn't match the perfect prose we imagined. Trying to make chapter one into the perfect chapter we tend to write it, re write it, then write it again - never moving on to write Chapter Two. That leads to frustration and, worse, doubt in our ability.
For me, once I accepted the fact that my first draft didn't have to be perfect, I was able to let go of the imperfect first chapter and move onto writing an imperfect second chapter
If you could change one thing about your writing space, what would it be?
I would have more of it. I use one of the rooms in my house as my office, and while it is a good-sized room, I've managed to fill it beyond capacity. I like to have everything associated with my writing around me - even if I don't need to access it on a regular basis - like the filing cabinet in which I store copies of manuscripts that have been published
I'd like to remove the wall between my office and the adjoining room, and double my current office space. Before long, of course, I'm sure I'd end up filling that space too.
What is the one thing you would love to learn how to do, but probably won't have the nerve to?
I'd love to be able to say something daring and bold like skydiving! Skydiving, though, isn't for me. I'd really love to learn gardening. Unfortunately, I have a brown thumb and can't grow anything.
Do you have any hobbies or special collections? If you could learn one new skill, what would it most likely be?
I love to read and that's what I do in my "off" time. I collect small statues and figurines, though not in any one style or of any one type. I find many that catch my eye so my collection keeps growing. <g> About learning a new skill, I'd like to learn a musical instrument. It's so awesome to be able to sit at a piano, or pick up a guitar or flute and make music.
How did you and your husband meet? Was it love at first sight? Did he send you flowers?
We met at the wedding of a mutual friend. I don't know if it was love at first sight, but there was a very definite attraction.
Yes, he did send flowers. I love all kinds of them and when he learned that, he sent wonderful assortments.
What was the most romantic gift you've ever received? What about the best one you've ever given?
My husband has come up with some pretty inventive stuff over the years, but I think the most romantic gift he's ever given me is the most simple, and my most cherished - a taped anniversary message.
I'm not creative when it comes to ideas for romantic gifts. Last year, though, he'd thought we were traveling out of town to attend a writers' convention and I surprised him with a romantic getaway instead.
How do you describe Karen Fenech? How does Karen Fenech's husband describe her?
I can't wait to hear how my husband will describe me, but here goes my description: I'm a work-aholic, a little shy, and won't go anywhere without a book to read.
Now for my husband's description . . .
Smart and Sexy!
Oh, boy! <g> Gotta love that man!
Are you right-handed or left-handed? Ever tried to write with the opposite hand?
Right handed. I tried to write left-handed, in addition to trying to do other things with my off hand, when I was writing BETRAYAL. My main character Katherine, who is right-handed, sustains an injury to her right hand. Using my left hand helped me to experience her frustration and to describe how she went about doing the things she needed to do without the use of her right hand, and later with only limited use of it.
What is your favorite spice?
That would be salt. When I cook, I have to consciously keep myself from adding too much since my family doesn't have my love for salty foods.
Name the one item in your closet that is a constant favorite…the one that always gets worn even though you might have something newer or better?
LOL that is definitely a pair of jeans that I have had forever. I will pair a silk blouse with those jeans. I don't know why I've become so attached to them, but I have!
And lastly, no interview of a writer would be complete without this question: what is your favorite comfort food?
LOL Chocolate! Is there any thing better?
Thank you, Karen, for taking time out of your busy schedule to spend with us.
Best of luck with your writing career!