Today I am interviewing Donna Hatch, author of The Stranger She Married. A couple of months ago I had the pleasure of reading this wonderful historical romance with an intriguing splash of mystery. I enjoyed every word and the time spent. It’s a great curl up and read by the fire story: entertaining, with a feel good ending.

Margaret: Hello Donna. Please tell us about your book The Stranger She Married.

Donna: “The Stranger She Married” is Book of the Rogue Hearts Series. Torn between a disfigured war hero with the heart of a poet, and a handsome libertine who may not be all he seems, impoverished Alicia must marry by the end of the month. Despite a murder threat looming over her, learning to love the stranger she married may pose the greatest danger of all … to her heart.

Margaret: The cover is gorgeous! Can you tell us a little about how covers come into being? Do you have input into the process?

Donna: Most publishers don’t let the authors have any input, but I was lucky — but mine does. I filled out a questionnaire with character descriptions and a concept of what I’d pictured. The finished result was nothing like I’d imagined, and the hero looks nothing like the cover, but they got the heroine spot-on right down to the eye color.  And I do like it, too.

Margaret: The rogue heart series is historical romance. Do you write in other genres?

Donna: I write in fantasy. One has been accepted for publication and will be out sometime in February (release date has not been announced)

Margaret: Who or what is your inspiration for writing?

Donna: I get ideas everywhere; a song, a spin off from a secondary character from another book, a picture, or just a difficult circumstance that would force a character to into conflict.

Margaret: You have several young children. How do you balance family with writing?

Donna: Yes, with 6 children, making time to write is very challenging. I do much of my writing at night after they are in bed, or during nap time, but when I’m on a roll, I write instead of unimportant things like fix dinner. I haven’t dusted since last Christmas and I gave up scrap booking. This year, my youngest child just started kindergarten, so now I can write after they all leave for school. I also work in an office part time every afternoon, so that really cuts into my writing but I’m very focused, (or obsessed) so I keep at it at odd times of the day. And night.

Margaret: Since you write in snatches of time, would you please share the method/s you use to keep track of where you are and what to write next.

Donna: Oh, it’s very technical.

I put the “at” sign @ at the passage where I left off if I’m editing. If it’s a new draft, I just go to the end and I only let myself reread the last couple of paragraphs before I continue writing to remind myself where I am in the story. Otherwise I get caught up editing instead of writing.

Margaret: Who was the first person you told when you found out your book was being published?

Donna: My husband. He was right there when I got the email.

Margaret: What do you like best about being an author?

Donna: A huge rush came when I got my contract and I was giddy about it for months. But I have to say that was nothing compared to the day my book came out and I saw it on the home page of my publisher. The euphoria was almost a surreal experience. The giddiness is still with me and I’ve noticed people inching away from me when my grin gets a bit too happy. I guess I scare people. And now I do it without even opening my mouth.

Margaret: What has surprised you about being a published author?

Donna: How excited my friends and family were for me. I knew they’d be supportive, but I had no idea how they’d rally around me and help me promote it like they have. My niece even set up a fan of The Stranger She Married fan page!

Margaret: Thanks for visiting with me today. I look forward to reading all of your books when they come out.

Here is where you can read more about Donna and her books:

The Stranger She Married, Book 1 of the Rogue Hearts Series — a Golden Quill Finalist
Coming Soon: The Guise of a Gentleman; Book 2 of the Rogue Hearts Series
Also coming soon: Queen in Exile, a fantasy