Who is Author CC Coldwell? Let’s find out!
Welcome to my interview with the fantastic CC Coldwell! Let’s talk about books and writing.
Hi CC Coldwell! Please introduce yourself and share 5 fun facts about you!
I am a writer of historical fiction who has just released my second novel. By day I’m a teacher but at night I’m a mom to two daughters and a very cute beagle. Somewhere in the middle I try to write.
5 FUN FACTS ABOUT ME:
- I am definitely NOT outdoorsy but I really enjoy camping
- I’m a terrible cook. My food is beyond bland.
- I’m deathly afraid of clowns.
- The sound of bagpipes always makes me cry.
- I love watching The Three Stooges, mostly for the comedy but also for the fashion.
What inspired you to become a writer?
I’ve been writing since I was six years old and even when I was that young I just knew I wanted to become a writer. I always seemed to be good with words. Other kids were athletic or musical or really good at math. There just never seemed to be anything I was really good at other than writing.
What has the self-publishing experience been like for you?
It’s been amazing. It’s allowed me to finally hold my work in my hands. Given me goals and allowed me to finally treat writing as a serious endeavour because I have those goals that I’m working towards. Also, the people I’ve met in the writing community have been amazing. I’ve learned from them. They’ve supported me and encouraged me. They’ve also helped a lot about the marketing aspect that comes with self-publishing. I’m learning a lot about that and taking more risks than I ever would have otherwise.
What has been your biggest challenge as a writer?
My biggest challenge as a writer is letting go of perfection for the first draft and giving myself permission to just get the story down. I constantly have to remind myself that a first draft doesn’t have to be great; it just has to be done.
What are your most notable victories?
Last week I made the Amazon Top 100 Bestsellers List for 3 categories: Western, Western Romance and Victorian Historical Romance. I was so excited that I called everyone I know and bragged. It was the first time I’d even come close to a bit of recognition. And then after about four hours Genuine Imitation Husband plummeted to #600 or something. But it was great while it lasted.
What do you like about writing western historical romance?
I love reading and writing historical fiction from many different time periods but I think I’ll always have a soft spot for the western genre. It was the first romance genre I ever started reading. There’s a well-established romanticism around the Old West that I’ve never been able to ignore. I love researching that time period too. It just seems to be full of odd stories and interesting people.
What are the challenges writing this genre?
I can easily get caught up in years of research without actually writing anything so at some point I have to tell myself to stop and just write the story. It’s also difficult for me because I’ve never lived west of Toronto and I want to be able to describe the landscape, the seasons, the colour of the sky, the weather, etc. accurately and paint a true picture. I can only go by what I’ve read and seen in books or on websites or in photographs.
What are your currently published novels about?
Both novels are centered around a small town in Dakota Territory called Boxwood. The first one is about a young woman who arrives as a mail-order bride only to find that the man she’s supposed to marry is dead. The second novel, Genuine Imitation Husband, continues the story started in Book 1 (Wife Not Required) but introduces another young woman who arrives in Boxwood trying to escape a marriage.
Do you have favourite characters from those novels?
I can’t help but feel very fond of Alec Ainsley, the main character from Genuine Imitation Husband. I modelled him after my grandfather who loved horses and was just such an interesting man.
What can you tell us about your Words In Progress (WIP)?
I’ve always loved mysteries – as a child my hero was the character of Jessica Fletcher in the TV show Murder She Wrote – and my WIP will be (hopefully) the start of a historical mystery series that takes place just after World War II featuring a female main character and a large group of unique, odd and interesting supporting characters. There may be a little bit of romance in there too because, really, what’s life without romance?
Do you relate to the characters in your book? If so, how?
I think authors always create characters who have little parts of themselves woven into them. Maddie, the main character in Wife Not Required, is physically very similar to me. Plus sized and tall and throughout my life people always made me feel really ashamed of that. Maddie feels that too and she has to work through that just like I did. Rose, the main character in Genuine Imitation Husband, always has a witty comment or a comeback and I’ve been told that’s a part of my personality.
How are you different from your characters?
My characters live in 1867 and I really would have been a terrible settler on the Prairies. I don’t like the outdoors and I’m afraid of horses. If I had to set up a homestead I’d probably complain constantly. I grew up living on a farm outside of town and I knew when I was a very little girl that I wasn’t cut out for farming life or life in the country. I’m pretty soft – I wouldn’t have survived very long in the Old West. I’m sure if I’d been a mail order bride my husband would have dumped me at the first stagecoach station.
What’s your favourite routine to get into the writing zone?
I have two young children so I can’t do any writing until they’re in bed. I write from 8-9 pm every night. Now that I’ve made it part of my routine and a scheduled commitment every single night (except Monday nights because I have to watch Murdoch Mysteries) I sit down and I easily slip into my zone.
Any last thoughts to share with your readers about you or your books?
I think my books appeal to anyone, whether they’re fans of the western genre or not, because they offer an escape from modern pressures and worries. They’re sweet stories with relatable characters.
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