Welcome, today we are talking with multi-award-winning bestseller Anna Durand! I would like to thank you for taking time out of your busy writing schedule to answer a few questions. First, I think it’s important for readers to get a little insight on an author that they don’t necessarily get from your professional bio. You’d be surprised at what readers connect to, and sometimes the simplest ‘I can relate to that’ grabs their interest where nothing else can.
Can you share a little something that’s not mentioned in your bio on your website?
I have a long-standing fascination with ancient history, especially ancient Egypt. Years ago, I taught myself to read and write in the hieroglyphic language of Egypt so I could understand the inscriptions I saw in photos of Egyptian tombs and monuments. I’m a bit rusty these days, but I have made use of that knowledge in my Reborn series.
What is your favorite:
Animal – Dogs
Food – Chocolate
Movie – Knight & Day
TV show – Lucifer
Actor – Chris Hemsworth
Singer – Rob Thomas
Author – I can’t pick one. There are too many I love equally!
What are your pet peeves?
It drives me nuts when people misuse pronouns, for instance by saying “you and I” when they mean “you and me.”
Who is your hero? My dad.
He passed away in 2016, but I probably wouldn’t be a writer without him.
Give us one thing on your bucket list.
I would love to visit Egypt.
What would readers find surprising about you?
I rarely use the F-word and don’t like it when people use it in tweets. My characters employ the F-word when it suits the scene and the character, but I didn’t even say it when I dropped a three-pound weight on my toe!
If you could go to heaven, who would you visit? My dad.
Any bad habits?
I can’t stop drinking Dr. Pepper. Reaching for one now…
Now that our readers know a little bit more about Anna Durand, let’s get down to the business of your book, Scandalous in a Kilt, book 3 in your Hot Scots Series. How long did it take you from beginning to end before your novel was completely finished, and how did you decide on the topic and title?
It took about three months to finish the book. I’d introduced the character of Rory in Dangerous in a Kilt, and he was talked about in Wicked in a Kilt. Since the start of the series, I’d planned the first three books to be about the three brothers — Lachlan, Rory, and Aidan — so I knew book 3 would be Rory’s story. The title came to me before the plot. It just popped into my head one day. From there, I played around with what the term scandalous might mean in the context of the romance between Rory and his American love interest. The character of Emery Granger was devised to be the perfect foil for Rory. He’s uptight, she’s free-spirited. He’s very contained and composed, while she wears skimpy outfits and hugs everyone she meets.
Please tell us a little bit about Scandalous in a Kilt.
The first three books in the series revolve around three brothers, and Scandalous tells the story of the middle brother, Rory. He’s a neurotic solicitor (translation for Americans: lawyer) who meets Emery, a free-spirited American. Naturally, the three-times-divorced Rory decides to marry Emery just so his family will stop pestering him to find another wife. He swears he’ll never love her, but she has plans to loosen him up — whether he likes it or not.
What was your hardest challenge writing this book?
Rory is the most damaged man I’ve ever written about, and I didn’t want his awakening to seem forced or rushed. That’s part of the reason why this book is longer than either Dangerous in a Kilt or Wicked in a Kilt. I agonized over whether I should shorten the book, but I realized Rory and Emery needed more time together, so his change would be authentic.
What in your opinion makes good chemistry between your leading characters?
Rory is very uptight and terrified to love again, while Emery is free-wheeling and unabashed in her passion for life and for her husband. Rory’s attraction to Emery often conflicts with his need for rules and his need to keep her at a distance, which jacks up the sexual tension between them. Her “outlandish enthusiasm,” as Rory calls it, introduces a lot of humor into their love story.
Will there be more books in this series?
Absolutely! The fourth book, Gift-Wrapped in a Kilt, will release in November. It’s a holiday romance about Jamie MacTaggart, the youngest sister and baby of the family, and her American boyfriend, Gavin Douglas (brother of Calli from Wicked in a Kilt). In that book, I introduce a MacTaggart cousin who will become the hero of the fifth book. The series will keep going until I run out of ideas.
Can you give us a little information on books 1 and 2?
Dangerous in a Kilt (book 1) stars the oldest MacTaggart brother, Lachlan, and his American love interest, Erica Teague. She’s out on bail, framed for her ex-lover’s crime, and Lachlan has just left a bad marriage that scarred him emotionally. Youngest brother Aidan meets his feisty American in Wicked in a Kilt (book 2). Though he’s determined to seduce and marry Calli Douglas, she’s trapped in a green-card marriage.
Any other works in progress?
Oh, I’ve always got at least two going at once. I’m finally finishing up Kinetic, the third book in the Psychic Crossroads series, after a prolonged delay. After that, I’ll be writing The Mortal Tempest, book 3 in the Undercover Elementals series. And of course, Gift-Wrapped in a Kilt is in progress too.
Any advice for aspiring authors?
Write, learn, and repeat. Learning about the publishing industry — the good and the bad — gives you a realistic perspective, but you also need to study writing techniques in order to develop your own style. But the most important thing any writer must do is WRITE. Finish books, don’t just start them. No one can buy a work-in-progress.
Why waste time on frowns? Read a book that makes you smile!
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