Nov 15, 2011

An Interview with Coleen Kwan

Today we have the wonderful Coleen Kwan with us to tell us about her new release When Harriet Came Home from Carina Press. Join us in welcoming her to the MFRW Authors’ Blog. Welcome, Coleen!

Tell us about your latest book, including its genre. Does it cross over to other genres? If so, what are they? (Please include the cover so we can post it as well.)

My debut novel, WHEN HARRIET CAME HOME, is a contemporary romance set in Australia. It’s a fun, sweet story about an ‘ugly duckling’ heroine who reluctantly returns to her hometown only to meet her old teenage crush. Here’s the blurb:

After ten years of exile, Harriet Brown is back in town. Things have definitely changed, but so has she. Now the confident owner of a catering business, she's no longer the shy, overweight girl everyone—including her hot teenage crush—used to ignore. In fact, she's determined to make peace with Adam Blackstone for her part in exposing his father's secret affairs and corrupt behavior as mayor.

But Adam has changed as well. No longer a pampered, rich pinup boy, he just wants to reestablish his family's good name. He reluctantly agrees to a truce with Harriet, and is surprised by how changed she is. He doesn't want to be drawn to her, but he can't seem to resist her allure.

As Harriet struggles to come to terms with her past, her adolescent infatuation with Adam morphs into something more serious… Will she ever be accepted again? Or will ancient history ruin the chance of a future full of possibilities?

The book is available from Carina Press, Amazon, and other ebookstores.

What can we expect from you in the future?

I’ve recently sold my first steampunk romance to Carina Press! It comes out next year, but I don’t have a publication date yet.

Do you have a favorite comment or question from a reader?

I was lucky enough to receive a great first review from Naughty Cougar Tales. “I could not put this book down, I read until the early hours of the morning, until my eyes refused to stay open. As soon as I woke up the next morning, I did housework then got right back into the book until I finished it. The emotions, secondary cast and most of all Harriett and Adam kept me enthralled until the end.”

Do you feel humor is important in fiction and why?

I love a bit of humor in my characters, but humor is very tricky to write as it’s so subjective. I’m not very good at writing humor. A judge once wrote on my score sheet, “Your heroine, Tamsyn, reminds me a lot of Stephanie Plum… without the humor.” Ouch!
Please tell us about yourself (family, hobbies, education, etc.)

I live in Sydney, Australia with my partner and two children. I graduated from university with a science degree and for many years I worked in IT. About three years ago I quit my job and started writing. I’ve had a lot of setbacks and rejections, but writing is such fun I couldn’t stop. I made my first sale to Carina Press in February of this year, and it’s been a steep learning curve from then on, not just in terms of editing, but all the associated marketing and promoting. My favorite hobby is reading! Now that I write, I find I have much less time for reading, which is a great pity.
Are you a member of any author groups - RWA, critique groups, etc.?

I belong to Romance Writers of Australia. They’re a great organization. As an unpublished writer, I entered many of their competitions and learned so much from the judges’ score sheets. Through them I’ve also joined online critique groups, face-to-face groups, and attended online conferences.

Where do you see yourself in five years?

I hope I’ll still be writing! I’d love to be multi-published, perhaps in several genres, but most importantly I hope I will still enjoy creating stories and characters.
How long have you been writing - have you always wanted to be a writer?

I dabbled a bit in my early twenties, but starting getting serious about three years ago. Although I’ve always been an avid reader, I haven’t always wanted to be a writer. It’s just evolved over the years.

What do you hope readers take with them after reading your work?

I hope readers will be transported away from their everyday lives, at least for a small time. I hope they will become emotionally invested in my characters, even if they hate them or want to strangle them, that’s good! The last thing I want is for my readers to be bored.

Where can your readers find you?

Where’s your favorite place to hang out online?


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