Author Marion Lennox is celebrating a big milestone this month — the publication of her 100th novel! Waves of Temptation is available now from Harlequin Medical Romance. We interviewed Marion about her milestone book, memorable moments from her writing career and what inspires her…
What is your favorite genre to write about?
Romance is definitely my favourite genre. The truth is I’ve been a sucker for a happy ending for as long as I can remember. One of the first books I fell in love with was Anne of Green Gables. The moment Marilla and Mathew told Anne she could stay, I knew this was the sort of emotion I’d like to create. When Anne finally agreed to marry her Gilbert I was totally hooked, and I’m still hooked now.
You say you live in Australia. I imagine it’s quite beautiful. Does the scenery ever make its way into your books?
The majority of my books have Australian settings. I was raised in a farming community, close enough to the sea for Dad to pack us in the back of the truck and take us fishing whenever we had the chance. Mine was a magic childhood, and I’m incredibly lucky to have a background that’s always there for me to tap into. Australia’s so varied, I can pretty much write whatever book I want and find a setting to fit. Occasionally I’ll write an escapist fantasy. I was Not Enjoying a very hot summer last year so I wrote myself a lovely Scottish Christmas, complete with snow. (Christmas at the Castle) But I always come home to Australia.
Where have you travelled and what was your favorite place to visit?
I love travelling in Australia. Probably my most memorable Australian holiday was taking a cruise in a small boat along Australia’s northern coast. Exploring the Kimberly Coastline close up, going ashore, seeing native rock art eighteen thousand years old, standing on reefs that are metres under water at high tide and metres above at low tide… it’s country that takes my breath away.
Having said that, travelling overseas is awesome, too. A walking tour of the Dordogne Region in France, walking from castle to castle to castle… Listening to Evensong in Westminster Abbey… Trying to find Hong Kong’s best dumpling house… Walking the Yorkshire Moors. Eating curries where they really come from… I’m lucky enough to have enjoyed them all. The world’s a magical place, and there’s still so much to see.
Waves of Temptation is your 100th title published! Congratulations! I can’t even imagine all the hard work you’ve gone through to get to this point today! Can you take us through a bit of your journey from the beginning to now?
I wrote my first romance while I was on maternity leave from teaching. I’m not exactly enamoured of housework and I have a lovely, tolerant husband. To write I put the playpen around my chair and typewriter and told the kids they could either stay in the playpen or they could have the whole rest of the house to play in. Thus was my first book born. It took two years (!!!) to be accepted, but since then I’ve never looked back. My books are published in over a hundred countries, in over twenty languages. I get reader mail from all around the world. Somehow, someway, my writing seems to touch a chord with my readers. I love creating emotional worlds and while my readers still want them, I’ll continue to avoid housework by writing them.
How will you be celebrating this 100th title? (because you should!)
My husband and I have decided we both deserve long service leave So what better way to celebrate than more travel. We’ve never seen Ireland so we think we might travel slowly, staying in the same place for a week or so at a time. Any suggestion for things we need to put on our itinerary, please write to me through my website. We’ll be there in the northern summer, but we’re dreaming already.
If you had to pick one special moment throughout your time of being an author, what would it be?
In New York in 1995, Harlequin’s Black and White Ball was held in the Starlight Room of the Waldof Astoria. I’d been nominated for the RITA, Romance Writers of America’s award for Best Traditional Romance of the year. That made me pretty excited but on the night of the ball, Harlequin also helped me celebrate writing my 50th book.
I was dressed to the nines. I was surrounded by wonderful friends, authors and editors, all who understood my passion for romance writing.
Our hotel was close so we strolled home at midnight. It was a balmy summer night. Warm air was wafting up through the vents in the pavement. A breeze caught my evening dress and it blew up like Marilyn Monroe’s.
That was my pinch me moment. I stopped still and thought of the farm at home and thought: ‘I wish the cows could see me now.’
Tell us a bit about your new book Waves of Temptation.
Waves of Temptation is a book of the heart. Because my husband’s a doctor, I’ve always found medics especially sexy. My first book was a medical romance so for my hundredth, that’s where I’ve returned. It’s also combined my passion for the beach, and my belief that to surf must be one of the most awesome abilities you can possess (Can you tell I always fall off?) Kelly is one special heroine, a woman with strength and honour who’s had it tough. Matt doesn’t know what he’s hit when she explodes into his life; he only knows that temptation doesn’t begin to describe how he’s feeling.
Who is your favorite character in your novel Waves of Temptation?
Kelly is amazing, a kid dragged up on the fringes of a surfing community, tough as nails but fragile underneath, fighting for a future for herself and her son. She’s pretty much my favourite heroine and I’ve met a few by now.
What can we expect from you in the future?
For my 101st I’m writing a duo with New Zealand author Alison Roberts. Last year I enjoyed a fabulous holiday in New Zealand’s Bay of Islands. Afterwards Alison and I thought, so many islands, so much scope for romance. So we put two brothers on a yacht, put a heroine apiece on two islands and threw a cyclone at them. Writing romance is fun; there are so many What Ifs to play with.
About the Book
When fate steps in…
When physician Kelly Eveldene’s son is injured in a surfing accident, she finds herself face-to-face with the one man she prayed never to see again: delectable orthopedic surgeon Dr. Matt Eveldene! Seeing beautiful Kelly again brings back their painful history and sparks new, unacceptable desires in Matt—Kelly’s strictly off-limits! But who can resist the temptation of the forbidden…!
The celebration continues in the Harlequin.com Community — join the discussion about Waves of Temptation.