The Organised Author

Interview with Susan!

I'm really happy to host today a friend and fellow writer, Susan James. Susan writes lovely

contemporary romance novel with a light sci-fi twist.

1.  What is something unique/quirky about you. 

I sing to myself a lot. Does that count? I am also a working actor. And I do Incomes taxes as a volunteer. That’s definitely quirky. 

2. Where were you born/grew up?

Hah! I was born in Buffalo NY. My first move was at five to Paris after Mom divorced dad and decided she wanted to go to Cordon Bleu. After that we moved every one to two years. (Fathers two and three got transferred a lot.) I lived in several states plus Cape Town, S Africa, Cuba, Canada and Italy. I graduated high school in Rome.

         3. What do you do to unwind and relax?

I love to do jigsaw puzzles, go to movies and when my son has time, I love to do an improvisation gig with him. He performs at several improv theatres around town. Right now we are taking a musical improv class together.

          4. What inspired you to write this book?

Some good friends of mine took a trip to Ireland and told me there was a town that had a matchmaking festival the entire month of September.
This I had to see. I requited my brother and sister in law and for my 70th birthday, we took a trip to Ireland and to Scotland. We went to Lisdoonvarna and visited the festival.
The trip was a dream-come-true but the festival itself felt like a farce.
I decided I wanted to write a book where a woman who didn’t believe in happy ever after went to a matchmaking festival. Only my festival was going to have real magic in it. I wrote it during NaNoWriMo (my writing weapon of choice) and then spent three years revising it. My hero in Irish Magic, Michael Walshe, is the son of my heroine in Time and Forever. He appeared as a young med student in the second book, Maybe This Time.

       5.  Which of your novels can you imagine made into a movie?

Irish Magic. The other two involve time travel and getting younger. Those kind of films are harder to cast. Although I could definitely see Nicole Kidman playing Jennifer Knight in Maybe This Time.

           6.    What did you enjoy most about writing this book?
Finishing it! I revised so many times. I have a fabulous critique group and an amazing editor. I also loved meeting Pirikit and the ghost and all of the other characters. I get to be friends with my characters and I love finding out who is going to show up and what they are going to do next.

A romantic comedy with a touch of magic.
What do you do when everything goes wrong?
Make a wish on a four-leaf clover, right?
There’s no other logical way out of it!
But a clover wish is a heart wish. Everyone knows that.
When part leprechaun, Bradley Flynn, is charged with finding Kate’s true love, he calls on retired matchmaker, Essie O’Callaghan, who happens to have a mission of her own.
Dr. Michael Walshe had a ring in his pocket when he walked in on his girlfriend sleeping with her costar. He wants no part of Essie’s plan to find him a wife.
Fate – or something more leprechaun-shaped – has Kate and the doctor both heading to Cluhalaugh, home to Ireland’s most famous matchmaking festival. And somehow their paths keep crossing. The more they see of each other the harder it is to resist exploring their reluctant attraction. Will Kate realize that Michael could be far more than the cure to her writer’s block?

Irish Magic
By Susan B. James

Madison Square Park. New York City
Hanford House wants its advance back.
Kate’s author mind edited her agent’s six-word text down to two. Panic now.
Blowing the last of her book advance on a ticket to Ireland to do research might be her worst idea to date. If you didn’t count getting engaged to Eric and using him as a model for her hero. Or quitting her day job before turning in the revisions on her second book. Did bad luck come in threes?
From her seat on the grass, she focused on the barely visible triangular point of the Flatiron Building. She was supposed to leave for Ireland next week. She was pretty sure her trip insurance wouldn’t accept needing a new job as a reason for a refund. The brownie she’d bought to celebrate her last day as a bookkeeper tasted like ashes. What was she going to do now?
Batten Barton and Dunston had already replaced her. Her savings would take her through the next two months, but she’d been counting on the second part of the book advance to tide her over till she finished her next book. And now they wanted the first part back?
She fisted a handful of grass for comfort, praying for an answer to stop this disaster. None came.
Advance spent, Kate texted back. Stall them.
You broke contract. Revisions due last month.
Almost done. Just one thing to fix.
One major thing. The ghost of her ex-fiancé tainted her hero’s every word. Physically Eric had been the perfect inspiration for dashing, mysterious Lord Rotherham, but . . . Kate’s throat constricted. She was no Jane Austen, turning the real-life man who broke her heart into a hero that haunted readers’ dreams. Her Lord R was a complete ass.
Why did she have to be the kind of writer who needed a real person to hang her fictional character on? Her thoughts raced till they crashed into the wall blocking her creative mind.
Traveling to Ireland had seemed reasonable when she bought the ticket. She’d kill two birds with one trip. Find a new model for Lord Rotherham and research her next book, Perfect Match, on the Bus Eireann tour she’d spent the last month planning. The plot had already bloomed in her head. All she needed was the bus tour to nail down the details.
Kate twiddled broken blades of grass between her thumb and forefinger. One fell free. No. Not grass. It was a four-leaf clover. Her first ever. In the middle of New York City?
Kate picked it up carefully. True love might be a dead issue, but there was still the hope of magic. She closed her eyes and made a wish. “Please. Send me the perfect hero.”

Susan writes second chance romances with a touch of magic as Susan B. James and children’s books
 as Susan J. Berger. She writes older heroines because she is chronologically gifted and enjoys 
 creating characters who remember that change is only on the outside. Inside our older shells is a much younger psyche. Her second book, Maybe This Time, won the 2019 Raven award for Best Contemporary, The 2019 Readers favorite Gold medal in Time travel and was runner-up for the 2019 RONE Award for Audiobook-General.  Her third romance, Irish Magic, came out in August 2019. The audiobook will be out in December 2019

Susan’s other career is acting. On IMDB She is Susan Berger.

Buy links Irish Magic


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