Alexis: Today we are chatting with Contemporary Romance author Patrizia Murray
What was the strangest thing that inspired a story for you?
Patrizia: My husband & I met on a blind date arranged by mutual friends. The occasion was a wiener Roast for my whole office. We were all adults, & had a lot of liquor, but we had designated drivers, & no one was drunk or disorderly. However, it happened that the spot in the country we had chosen for our gathering was on Indian land, & we were raided by the RCMPolice (in Canada) They confiscated all our liquor & stayed to make sure we all vacated the area. There are laws that state non-residents of the reservation can’t bring booze onto the reservation. This was the basis of my first novel, Mia’s Blind Date.
Alexis: How long did it take you to write your most recent release? Why?
Patrizia: I’m a very fast & prolific writer. I am an avowed pantser, & suffer somewhat from ADD. I write the way I read, working on several books at once. When I get stuck on a scene or direction for one, I Just start working on another book for a while till I get stuck on that one. I’m usually working on 3-5 books at a time. I publish 5-6 books a year, between my two names. The shortest time I have worked on a book is 48 hours, when I wrote my book on 9/11, & the longest maybe a year, working sporadically elapsed time is different, as I have a full time job, so have to fit writing in when I can. If I could work on a book every day, I think it would only take me a couple of weeks to finish.
Alexis: Everyone has their own writing process…how they come up with ideas, how they name their characters, how they choose the setting. Can you describe your writing process?
Patrizia: I name my characters by choosing given names from my husband’s & My family trees. I get surnames from towns, neighborhoods & areas where I grew up. I choose settings from my past, my home town, my grandparents’ & other relatives’ towns where I spent time growing up, my college city, my current home town & surrounding towns, & places I have visited. I don’t really have a writing process per se. Stories spring from my mind almost fully formed & I can’t get the words down as fast as my mind can make them up. I once had a dream of an opening scene, which I used for Lucinda’s Grooms. Once I had that opening scene, the rest of the book just wrote itself. I only wish I had more time to get the words down on paper. I already have two more sequels to Lucinda fully formed in my mind, at least two more in my Olympic series, & three more in the Ladies Who Lunch series. One thing I do as a process, is write the main story as quickly as possible, without much dialog or description. Then once that’s done, I start at the beginning and add all the dialog & description, which usually doubles the word count. Then I start at the beginning again, looking for continuity, whether the story flows well, & how everything fits together.
Alexis: When did you know you wanted to be a writer?
Patrizia: I’ve been writing since I was a kid. News & sports stories, newspaper columns, essays, speeches for politicians, editorials, textbooks, blogs, grant proposals, you name it. However, I only started writing fiction about five years ago. I wish I had done this years ago.
Alexis: What made you chose your titles?
Patrizia: Most of my titles have a woman’s name in them. Justine’s Auction, Mia’s Blind Date, Freddi’s Collection. That’s for continuity between the books, although all are stand-alone. there are other titles, but the majority have my heroines’ names.
Alexis: Patrizia, thank you so much for visiting Happily Ever After Thoughts. It was a pleasure to have you.
Patrizia Murray is the pseudonym of an Arizona columnist, editorialist, and reporter, an author of essays, poetry and children’s stories, and published song writer. She loves sunshine, family, Christmas, golfing, reading, cooking, entertaining, all kinds of music, (especially classical, which she listens to while writing), singing, playing piano, bridge, and attending live theater and concerts. She is married with one son, and tries to write at least two hours a day, when not working in her husband’s business, and enjoying her other interests.