Q&A: Susan Mallery on Writing, Romantic Moments and Until We Touch
Readers have fallen in love with New York Times bestselling author Susan Mallery‘s contemporary romances, including the bestselling Fool’s Gold series. Her stories are always filled with love, laughter–and of course, happily ever afters! Read on for a special Q&A with Susan about how she got started writing romance, her favorite romantic moments and her latest Fool’s Gold book, Until We Touch, on sale today!
When did you start writing?
I started writing in college. I was studying Accounting (exceedingly boring), so an evening class about how to write romance novels sounded like it would be a lark. It was. So much so that I ditched Accounting as soon as I got the degree and threw everything I had into becoming a published writer.
When did you get your first book deal?
I had received many rejection letters as I worked to become a published writer. One in particular just gutted me. I loved that book and had been so sure that it would sell, that when the rejection letter came, I felt devastated. I thought seriously about giving up, but somehow, I pushed through the pain and kept writing that day. And the book I was writing at that moment was my first sale. If I had given up, I would’ve missed a wonderful life. My first two books came out the same month in 1992—one a contemporary category romance and the other a single title length historical romance.
What tips would you give to other aspiring romance authors, looking to be published?
Write. Write, write, write. Read a lot, and when a book really resonates with you, read it a second time and try to break down why it worked. Not a day goes by that I don’t sit at my computer and try to write better than I did the day before.
Where do you look for writing inspiration?
Inspiration comes from everywhere. There are infinite ways to fall in love. I have more ideas than I’ll ever have time to write. The real trick is taking a germ of an idea and shaping it into a story that will sustain 400 pages.
What is your favorite romantic moment?
I find a lot of romance in the little things, things that show that my husband thinks of me when we’re apart. Maybe he recorded my favorite show while I was gone, or bought me a book he thought I’d like.
When were you happiest?
I remember feeling giddy when my husband and I first met. Such a lovely time! Love has a way of settling into something quieter. Still beautiful—richer, even—but that initial rush of giddiness is a lot of fun.
What is your favorite romantic film?
One of my many favorites is Love Actually. It’s one of my Christmas traditions to watch it, and it always makes me tear up. Love actually is all around us.
Do you believe in love at first sight?
I believe in very strong attraction at first sight. I don’t think that attraction is 100% physical, and I certainly believe that instant attraction can become love. However, I think true love comes when you know a person.
What book would you choose to take on a desert island?
A blank notebook with a lifetime supply of pencils. (I prefer to write in pen, but hey, I’m roughing it.)
Tell us about your new book, Until We Touch.
My latest book is Until We Touch, a Fool’s Gold romance and my nod to the boss/secretary story. Larissa is Jack’s personal assistant and masseuse… he played football professionally, and he’s still in good shape today because he takes care of his body, including regular massages. At the beginning of the book, Larissa’s mom asks Jack to fire her daughter. Larissa is in love with him, she insists, and she’ll never settle down as long as she holds out hope for him. This is news not just to Jack, but to Larissa, too. She’s not in love with him… is she? Just by saying the words, her mom changes everything. And suddenly those daily massages become a lot more intense.
About Until We Touch:
After a family tragedy, former football hero Jack McGarry keeps the world at arm’s length—a challenge now that his PR firm has moved to neighborly Fool’s Gold, California.
Larissa Owens knows where she stands—Jack sees her as just another one of the guys. No matter what her heart wishes, Jack’s her boss, not her boyfriend. But then Larissa’s big secret is revealed…by her mother!
When Jack discovers the truth about Larissa’s feelings, her touch suddenly becomes tantalizing, and he’s not sure he wants to resist. But if he gives in to desire, heartache is sure to follow. Friendship or true love—will Jack go for the ultimate play?
Click here to learn more about Fool’s Gold and download two free recipes from Susan Mallery’s Fool’s Gold Cookbook!