Today I’ve had the wonderful opportunity to chat with the author Gwen Hayes about writing, philosophies and her book ‘Winning Back His Wife’.
Gwen, thanks for joining me today. Let’s get started today by going through the basic plot line of your novel that is currently being featured on ItsWriteNow.com, ‘Winning Back His Wife’. How does it start?
Twenty years ago, Michael Tully fell hard and fast at summer camp. Now his soon-to-be ex-wife has quit her job and invested every last penny into re-inventing Camp Firefly Falls. It’s a crazy, ridiculous plan–which he ignores, right up until he’s served with divorce papers. First book in an interconnected series coming summer 2016!
Can you tell us a bit more about Camp Firefly Falls. How did the idea for this come to you?
I read an article about a summer camp for grown-ups and knew it would be the perfect setting for romance. I asked a bunch of my author friends and they agreed, so we began a shared world series. There will be seven books this year, but we’re already planning 2017.
That’s a really neat idea to have a shared world series. Did you find this arrangement of creating a series this way rewarding?
Writing the first book with Zoe York was so fun and enlightening because it was my first time co-authoring a book. I was nervous, but it turned out to be so much fun.
How long did the co-authoring process take?
I think we wrote it in about two months.
As the book is about romance and summer camps, did you feel like you had enough personal experiences to draw upon as a knowledge basis?
I never went to sleepaway camp–but I watched the movies and read the books as a teen!
What movies did you watch as research?
I re-watched clips from ’80s camp movies like Little Darlings and Meatballs.
Did you use the characters from these movies as inspiration, or did did they come about in a different way?
Well, Zoe and I were having coffee at a conference when we started brainstorming–so that tells you where the last name Tully came from!
Did you also brainstorm themes to include in the book?
Love conquers all is the theme to all romance–so I don’t see how you can get away from that one. But I think more than themes, Camp Firefly Falls Series incorporates our favorite tropes.
Tropes can be fun to work with. As you’ve finished with this novel are you going to pick up some more tropes to work with or are you thinking of working on something else?
I’m thinking of going back to YA for a bit. Maybe. I dunno…I go where the muse tells me to go.
Aside from your muse, what are your current thoughts about the future of reading, writing and publishing?
I feel optimistic. I don’t think reading is going anywhere–and publishing is a wave you just need to catch at the right time. If that one didn’t work–wait for the next.
That’s good advice. You’ve had success and found things that have worked, how did you feel when you got your first book review?
I blocked it out. I’m sure. I try not to read reviews very often. I check that I have some–but it’s for the readers, not for me.
And finally to round out the interview, my favourite section – the Quick Fire round. Just answer the next questions with whatever pops into your head.
Do you write longhand, type or use dictation?
I would never be able to read my writing longhand. I have tried dictation, but I freeze up.
What was your favourite book as a child?
I’m on book 7 of Nalini Singh’s Psy/Changeling series. I am about ten years behind the times, I know.
Who is your favourite literary character?
Meg Murry, Wrinkle in Time
Do you have any philosophies that you live by?
Not my circus; not my monkeys.
I like that one. What is your favourite quote from another author?
‘Remember to always be yourself. Unless you suck.’ Joss Whedon
Thank you so much for spending our time with us today and discussing ‘Winning Back His Wife’. Good luck for you next book and I hope to hear more about the rest of the ‘Camp Firefly Falls’ series in the future.
Want to find out more about Gwen? Contact her at the following locations: