As part of our Exploding Hearts series, we’re interviewing as many romance novelists as possible between now and Valentine’s Day. Let your heart grow three – or even fourteen – sizes this February and check out these authors’ books, from the sweet and inspirational to the spicy hot.
Pamela Humphrey is the author of the romantic suspense novel Finding Claire. Set in the Texas Hill Country, a woman wakes up in the back of the van with no recollection of who she is. Her only clue is a photo marked “Claire.” Injured and afraid, she knocks on a cabin door to find Alex, who protects her despite his misgivings.
We recently had the chance to interview Pamela about her book and literary influences. Here’s what she had to say.
Who are your top 5 authors or influences?
- Jane Austen
- Emily Brontë
- Charlotte Brontë
- Anne Brontë
- LM Montgomery’s book, The Blue Castle
What fuels your writing?
Genealogy sparked my writing. Each record or certificate is a small reminder of someone’s story. And you never know what kind of trouble you’ll dig up.
What inspired you to write your latest book?
The rugged beauty and remoteness of the Texas Hill Country.
Do you have a favorite quote about the writing process?
“I think there are two types of writers, the architects and the gardeners. The architects plan everything ahead of time, like an architect building a house. They know how many rooms are going to be in the house, what kind of roof they’re going to have, where the wires are going to run, what kind of plumbing there’s going to be. They have the whole thing designed and blueprinted out before they even nail the first board up. The gardeners dig a hole, drop in a seed and water it. They kind of know what seed it is, they know if planted a fantasy seed or mystery seed or whatever. But as the plant comes up and they water it, they don’t know how many branches it’s going to have, they find out as it grows. And I’m much more a gardener than an architect.” ―George R.R. Martin
How (if at all) does your geographic location influence your writing?
All my books are set in Texas.
As a romance author, what inspires the types of stories you’re drawn to tell in your books? And what kinds of books do you enjoy reading?
I like telling stories that are both mystery and romance. The blended plot lines fuel each other. I enjoy many kinds of books, but a thread of romance is always a plus.
What’s your writing routine like? Are you a plotter or a “pantser”?
I’m so much a pantser, or as called in the above quote, a gardener.
How much time do you usually spend researching a novel before you begin writing?
I research as I write, because being a pantser I don’t know what I need to research until an idea comes, with pen to paper.
Do you have any talismans, charms, superstitions or music that inspires or helps you to write, and what’s the story behind them?
I don’t have a specific song, but I am inspired by classic country music.
If you weren’t a writer, what would you be?
Probably something different every year: a genealogist, a jewelry artist, but always a wife & mom.
What are some of your hobbies or sports of choice when getting out from behind the desk?
So many hobbies, so little time. I love paper-crafting, sewing rag quilts, making jewelry, and researching genealogy.
What are you currently working on, and why will it melt hearts?
I’m working on book two of the Hill Country Secrets series. Characters that readers became attached to in Finding Claire will be the main focus of book two. Some relationships are strained, others grow stronger, and a couple side characters from Finding Claire are back again. Threaded through all the danger is romance.