I'm delighted to welcome multi-published author Margot Johnson. Her romances are like a big, warm hug -- with chocolate! Her latest book, Let It Simmer, is a sweet and hilarious rom-com. We'll talk about the book and her Merilee Tours series, but first let's get to know Margot a little better.
1) What sort of books did you enjoy reading as a child? Did you have a favorite book or series?
I read every Nancy Drew book available as well as series books like Trixie Belden, the Hardy Boys, Cherry Ames, and Donna Parker. I loved The Secret Garden. I also enjoyed reading to my girls when they were young. We read the Little House on the Prairie series and classics like Charlotte’s Web and Charlie and the Chocolate Factory.
I adored the Little House books when I was a child.
2) What sort of books do you enjoy reading nowadays?
I read a variety of things. I still love a good mystery/thriller. Chick lit books are fun. I like historical fiction, too. When I’m in the middle of writing a book, I can’t read other romances because I don’t want to influence my voice. My book club gets me to read things I would necessarily choose, which is good. Our current book is The Midnight Library.
3) Around what age did you realize that you liked to write? And when did you know that you wanted to write books?
Around grade 2. I come from a family of writers. I remember my dad sitting at the dining room table clicking away on an old, manual typewriter.
4) What’s the first thing you wrote that you remember being proud of?
In grade 2, I made a small, illustrated storybook. I didn’t show promise as an illustrator!
It must have been so cute!
5) Tell us about the creative force within you. What inspires you to write, to create?
I just feel like writing is in my genes and something I’m meant to do. When I read a really good book, I want to enthrall readers in the same way.
6) What’s your writing space like?
It floats around the house. I could set up an office in a spare room, but I like to move my little, rolling desk around to where the sun shine in or near the fireplace when it’s cold. I use different notebooks to help keep me organized (doesn’t always work!).
LOL! At first, I thought you were referring to a laptop! How great to be able to move your whole desk around! That must be super-convenient!
7) Do you have a favorite time of day to write? Any habits or little rituals that put you in a writing mindset?
I like to get started early in the day before other things distract me. Right now, I’m trying to find the right balance between writing a new novel, editing, and promotion. I set a target word count (minimum of 1,000 words a day) to keep me focused and make steady progress.
8) Time to talk about Let It Simmer (rubbing hands together). But first, how did you come up with the idea for the series? Are there any interesting tidbits you’d care to share with us?
The Merilee Tours series started a novella for The Wild Rose Press Christmas cookie collection. I wanted to inject humor and had fun with starting each chapter with a humorous quote or corny joke that relates to the story.
A little background on Let it Simmer…
Merilee’s tour visits Waskesiu, located in beautiful Prince Albert National Park, Saskatchewan, Canada. Our family holidays there every summer, and it’s one of my favorite places.
9) I comprehend that you’ve just recently published a book. I know what that takes. Still, I can’t help but ask – do you have anything waiting in the wings?
My next novel is in the editing stage with TWRP. It’s another small-town story with characters pursuing their dreams. I’ll share more details as it progresses. I also have Merilee’s next adventure planned. As well, I’d like to write more stories about mature characters because I think a lot of woman would like to read about people closer to their own ages finding love later in life.
I think you're right about that (the more mature characters) and that it's a lovely idea.
10) Is there anything else you’d like to share with us?
Many people tell me they have an idea or would like to write a book. My advice is to sit down and do it! I find characters take on a life of their own, so the writing process leads to more creativity and interesting, fun surprises.
I couldn't agree more.
Thank you for sharing your time and talent with us today, Margot! Congratulations again on your new release!
And now for Let It Simmer!
He crashed her holiday…but will he break her heart?
A sensible, mature widow like Susan doesn’t belong on a tour bus seated next to her high school crush. Thirty years later, Phil is as charming and handsome as ever, but she doesn’t need a new partner, especially not a love-’em-and-leave-’em guy.
Happily single, Phil tags along to celebrate his matchmaking mom’s eightieth birthday. She’s embarrassingly persistent, but maybe she’s right he should, finally, settle down with the right woman.
Susan only wants a little family time with her two cousins and a scenic vacation to Northern Saskatchewan…so why does she feel like a fluttery teenage girl? Can Phil spark even more excitement than games, scenery, and wildlife?
Excerpt from Let It Simmer
Phil swam to greet her. “You didn’t dunk your head.”
“I like to keep my head above water.” She smiled and tilted into a side stroke, but with a huge, open lake in every direction, why did she choose to drift so close? Next to the shade of the water, his eyes glinted azure, and with droplets of moisture sprinkled over his face, he glistened youthful, refreshed…and more handsome than ever.
Slowing, he flipped upright and faced her just a few feet away.
She treaded in place and watched him float closer and sweep his gaze over her face and shoulders. Her body tingled, and she imagined the touch of his warm, gentle lips. Without a doubt, he wanted to kiss her…but was now too soon for a romantic interlude? She hadn’t kissed a man in eight, long years, and she’d only become reacquainted with Phil mere days ago.
She hardly knew the man, except she felt this deep, unexplained connection. The holiday freed and unburdened her—like a woman who deserved a new kind of happiness. Should she allow a kiss? Could she?
She closed her eyes, parted her lips, and…tasted a faceful of musty water. Sputtering, she snapped open her eyes, spewed it into the lake, and wiped her drenched face. What just happened?
About the Author
Margot Johnson writes feel-good stories about dreams, family and romance.
She is the author of five romances--the novels LOVE TAKES FLIGHT and LOVE LEADS THE WAY and three novellas in the Merilee Tours series--LET IT SNOWBALL, LET IT MELT, and LET IT SIMMER. Her characters can't possibly find their happy endings...or can they?
Before turning her focus to the fun writing life, Margot held leadership roles in human resources and communications. Her motto is "Dream big and work hard." When not writing, she loves to connect with family and friends, volunteer with SK Writers Guild, and walk at least 10,000 steps a day (except when it's minus 40!)
She lives with her husband in the Canadian prairies.
"Between the delicious-sounding meals, beautiful scenery, and sparkle of romance, this book is a page-turning joy!"
“What a fun and entertaining read!”
“A funny, cute, and romantic story”
“Full of sweet anticipation and laugh-out-loud moments.”
“A story as sweet and warm as summertime at the lake.”
It's no secret that I prefer fat HEAs. Where better than in a beautiful romance?
From me to you with a smile.
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