Thursday, December 12, 2013

Author Interview: Ginny Baird

Ginny Baird
author, Holiday Brides series

Say your publisher has offered to fly you anywhere in the world to do research on an upcoming book, where would youmost likely want to go?

Oh my gosh, I would totally love to go to Bora Bora. I saw a romantic comedy movie called “Couples’ Retreat” where a group of friends went there on vacation, and it looked fantastic. The ocean was the most incredible shade of turquois, and couples stayed in grass huts situated above the water. They could actually look down through windows in the floor and see fish swimming below them! It would be such a treat to stay someplace like that and set a book there.

What is your favorite genre to write?

I really enjoy writing romantic comedy. Blending romance with laughter can be a lot of fun. Some of my stories lean more heavily toward romance, others toward humor, but all have at least a “dash” of humor thrown in. I’ve also always been a fan of mysteries. (As a young teen, I got hooked on Agatha Christie.) While I don’t typically write in that genre, my Halloween romance THE GHOST NEXT DOOR includes some of those elements of intrigue, suspense and surprise.

Why do you choose to write clean/sweet romance? Do you write steamy romance as well?

I love writing clean/sweet romance because it presents the unique challenge of developing an emotionally satisfying story while leaving the bedroom door closed. I’m an old movie buff, and really enjoy seeing how romances were portrayed in a sweeter venue, back in a more innocent age. This didn’t mean sex was never implied, but the graphic details weren’t there. A lot was left to the viewers’ imagination or interpretation. I like to do the same with my sweet books. I think my background as a screenwriter targeting romantic comedies to a general television audience (i.e., PG or PG-13) helped me hone that particular skill.

I also have written steamier stories, but those were structured that way primarily to meet a publisher’s guidelines.

REAL ROMANCE and THE SOMETIME BRIDE were two books initially slated for publication as Kensington Precious Gems novels. Before writing for Precious Gems, I actually bought several of those books and analyzed the stories, discovering there was always at least one sex scene by chapter twelve or thirteen. Up until that point, there was lots of sexual tension between the characters, but that wasn’t fully realized until much farther along in the book. So I patterned my submissions to that editor accordingly.

Apart from editorial expectation, sometimes the nature of a story drives the sensuality level of a book. HOW TO MARRY A MATADOR contains a few explicit scenes, but these are pretty much in keeping with what’s portrayed in traditional contemporary romance – similar to the scenes in REAL ROMANCE and THE SOMETIME BRIDE. All the rest of my novels and novellas to date would be defined as clean romance. In fact, I intentionally developed my two novellas series (The Holiday Brides and The Summer Grooms) as clean lines.

What other things do you have planned with your writing for the next year or so?

I plan to continue both novella series with new additions, and also have another single title project in mind.

How much of your personality and life experiences are in your writing?

LOL. Well, those who know me understand there’s a lot of my life in my books! I can’t think of one book I’ve written that hasn’t incorporated some genuine detail or an experience I’ve had. MISTLETOE IN MAINE showcases a pretty hilarious skiing scene, where the heroine is a bumbling mess, and both of her big mishaps on the slopes really happened to me. My latest Brides book, BABY, BE MINE, includes a charm necklace with a special significance. This piece of jewelry is based on something I have, and which my husband gave me when we were dating. And John’s proposal in THE CHRISTMAS CATCH very closely mirrors my husband’s proposal of marriage to me. That whole story actually contains lots of elements from our courtship. All of my stories have something like that: at least one detail that’s real, and personal and true, something that comes not just from my personal experience – but also straight from my heart.

Where do your ideas come from?

All over the place! Locations I visit, experiences I’ve had, things I’ve heard about or seen… I actually keep a blog about this called “The Story Behind the Story.” I often give details about how I thought a story up or what precisely inspired it. Sometimes I’ll post sample chapters or “sneak peeks” there, but mostly the blog gives the background behind my stories. You can visit my blog at Goodreads here: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/5374955.Ginny_Baird/blog

Please share about your book 

My newest release BABY, BE MINE is Book 5 in my Holiday Brides Series. It’s a friends-to-lovers story with a different twist, as the hero (who’s secretly been in love with the heroine) is asked to help the heroine find the guy she’s going to marry. She needs to marry quickly to secure an inheritance, so – with the hero’s help – she sorts through her list of past boyfriends in order to find a suitable candidate. If you’ve seen the romantic comedy films “The Bachelor” and “When Harry Met Sally” it’s almost like a blend of the two, but unlike in the “The Bachelor” it’s the girl who must find a mate.

This also has the complication thrown in that the hero’s asked to do the one thing he doesn’t want to: help the woman he loves marry someone else!

Do you have a favorite character you have written so far? 

This is an interesting question, because it seems my favorite characters are always the ones from the books I’ve just written. Maybe that’s because time-wise (and mentally and emotionally), they still are closet to me. At the moment, I adore Nikki from BABY, BE MINE for all her quirks and imperfections, and am totally wild about BABY’s hero Jack.

But a month ago, I was all about Nathan and Elizabeth from THE GHOST NEXT DOOR (A LOVE STORY). Once I start writing my next book, I’m sure those characters will and capture my imagination – and hold my heart – just as surely. So I really do think it has something to do with timing and emotional focus.

Thank you so much for this wonderful opportunity to interview with Clean Romance Reviews! It was a pleasure answering your questions, and such a delight to get to share tidbits about myself and my stories I haven’t had occasion to address before. If readers have further questions, please encourage them to visit my website at http://GinnyBairdRomance.com or email me at GinnyBairdRomance@gmail.com. I welcome and respond to all correspondence.



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