I’m delighted to welcome USA TODAY Bestselling Author ASHLYN MACNAMARA to Rakes and Rascals today for an exclusive interview.
Thank you so much for having me. I’m delighted to be here.
Could you tell us where you were born and what it was like growing up there?
I live in Canada now, but I was actually born in eastern Pennsylvania. I don’t think I had an abnormal childhood. We lived on the edge of the suburbs, I suppose you could call it. When we first moved there, the back yard ended on a cornfield, but they soon put up a sub-division. But we lived close enough to a stable where I could take riding lessons when I was a teenager. My parents thought that was an indulgence. Little could they know a familiarity with horses would stand me in good stead when I started writing historical romance.
How would you describe yourself – temperamental or easy-going?
I like to think I’m fairly easy-going. I’m pretty happy to let someone else pick the restaurant or activity and follow along with what everyone else wants to do.
When it comes to food do you like sweet or savoury or both?
I pretty much have to say both. I enjoy food of all kinds. I enjoy a lovely dinner, but a little sweet at the end of the meal is always welcome. Especially if chocolate is involved.
What is your most treasured possession?
My most treasured possession is intangible, I’m afraid. It’s my imagination. In my imagination, I can travel anywhere, I can entertain myself for hours—everything becomes possible.
I can’t show you a picture of my imagination but I can show you a picture of my cat Pom Pom being silly.
If you were able to afford a second home anywhere in the world where would you choose and why?
I’ve had a conversation like this with my sister-in-law. We both agree we’d love to live somewhere not too hot, not too cold, with a fair amount of sun year-round, but we’re both convinced such an ideal location does not exist. If we’re talking real places, I think an old, historic house in the English countryside would be wonderful for writing inspiration.
Finally, what has been your most embarrassing moment?
I’m going to tell you about an embarrassing moment without it being the most embarrassing moment—because I can be a real dork when I want to be.
In 2011, I attended the Romance Writers of America® national conference. This was my first really big writers’ conference, and I didn’t know very many people yet. On top of that, I was a finalist in a big unpublished writers’ contest, I had just signed with my agent, and sold my first book all in a matter of months. I was intimidated to say the least.
Now when you attend these conferences, you get various ribbons, depending on a number of factors. I had three on my badge, and they went down in a column: First Timer, Golden Heart® Finalist, First sale. Another thing that happens when you go to these conferences is when you get on the elevator, people will look at your beribboned badges.
This is my badge from last year’s conference to show you the ribbons. As you can see, we also like to add all sorts of bling to our conference badges:
So I get on the elevator, and Kieran Kramer is in there with me. She smiled and commented on my ribbons, congratulating me on the contest final and sale. And I’m thinking OMG Kieran Kramer, this published author is talking to me. Not only that, she initiated the conversation.
Did I mention I get tongue-tied in these situations? Because I do. I hope I thanked her.
So then she asked me what I wrote, and I said, “Regency.” “Oh,” she replied, “I write Regency, too.” (This was before she started writing contemporaries.)
And in all my eloquence, I said, “I know.”
And then I faced front and clammed up, because I had no idea what else to say.
As soon as I got off the elevator, I started mentally berating myself for being such an idiot and Kieran Kramer must think I’m an awful snob and a horrible person, etc. etc.
I have since gotten to know her a little better, and she’s got to be one of the world’s kindest, friendliest people. I have since apologized to her for being such a dork on the elevator.
Thank you for taking time out to be here today and sharing these interesting facts about yourself, Ashlyn.
Thank you for inviting me! Cheers!
If you would like to find out more about Ashlyn and her books, here are the links: