Abbie Zanders Interview Published on: 31, Jul 2018

You really enjoy reading romance apart from writing it. Who is your favorite romance novelist? Which is your favorite romance novel?

The list of my favorite go-to authors would take several pages. My favorite genre to read is romance (naturally), though I do enjoy crime suspense thrillers and classic mysteries, too.

Where were you born and brought up? Has the place and its culture reflected in your writing?

I was born and raised in Northeast Pennsylvania, USA, and yes, it is most definitely reflected in my writing. Most of my books are set in the mountains and valleys around NEPa, and the culture is a huge part of my characters’ lives, dialogue, and behaviors.

Who all are a part of your family? How do they inspire you to write?

I’ve got three children, all college age now. Their support means the world to me.

You have degrees in Computer Science and Mathematics and have worked jobs like that of a software engineer, and writing financial applications. How did you decide to start writing? Was the transition difficult?

I’ve been writing ever since I was kid. I used to watch television shows and read books that inspired me to create my own stories. Until the last few years, I never believed I would actually publish anything. Self-publishing changed everything for me and made my dream of a writing career possible. The corporate take-over of the company where I worked for nearly 30 years and a lovely early retirement option provided the push I needed to give it a shot.

How have all your jobs, including being a mom, inspired your writing and your stories?

Everything in my life has inspired and shaped my writing in one way or another. Every experience, both good and bad, has provided invaluable insight into the people, emotions, and dreams we (I) like to read about.

What is your ideal setting to write? How often do you get the chance to write in it?

I love to write someplace quiet and with a great view, like at the beach or in the mountains. Most of the time, however, I write when I can at my kitchen table.

What are the other things you enjoy doing apart from writing and reading?

Listening to music (I’m a child of the 80s and love hair bands and heavy metal), binge-watching paranormal shows, gardening, hiking mountain trails and going to car shows (especially those featuring American muscle cars).

You have written so many books- both series and standalones. Which story is the closest to your heart and why?

That’s impossible to answer. They are all close to my heart, because I wrote them from my heart.

What inspired you to write the series Callaghan Brothers? What about it is your favorite part?

I worked in an Irish pub for years when times were tough and money was tight. It was both the best and the hardest job I ever had. I loved the close-knit sense of family, and met some of the most memorable people in my life during my time there. My favorite part about the Callaghans is how they are always there for each other, no matter what. I think that sense of family really comes through while at the same time, all of the characters have unique personalities.

Mythic series must have been difficult to write. Which of them was the most challenging to put into words?

The Mythic series wasn’t difficult to write, not at all. Paranormal is my favorite romance subgenre (as a reader), but I didn’t want to have to choose just one type of otherworldly creature. So I just closed my eyes and imagined a place where all preternatural creatures could co-exist and the challenges they might face. Mythic is one of my favorite places to go when I need an escape from reality.

Your stories cater to a very wide audience- readers of myth, paranormal, happy endings, vampires, etc. How do you ensure that your readers enjoy what you write?

I don’t. I write what I like and hope others like it, too.

If you could bring to life one of the Callaghan Brothers, who would it be and why?

That is SUCH a difficult question. It’s like asking me to pick my favorite child. The answer changes daily, sometimes hourly, depending on how they’re behaving and what kind of mood I’m in 😊 Every one of them is my favorite at one time or another.

Faerie Godmother has a very interesting and intriguing story; one that once picked up can be very difficult to put down. What inspired the story?

A song, actually – Alice Cooper’s “Poison”. In the song, Alice sings about longing for someone, even knowing she’s toxic, and I thought, that sounds like a great basis for a romance. I started with a powerful master vampire and made him desire the one thing that could destroy him.

Which is the next book you are working on? Give us an insight into it.

I’m currently working on a book called “Not Quite Broken”, which is part of my Callaghan Family & Friends series and is scheduled for release September 18th, 2018. It’s the story of a popular secondary character from my original Callaghan series, Brian McCain, brother to one of my heroines and a POW rescued by the Callaghans. He’s a complex, mysterious character and hopefully, his story will do him justice.

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