Monday, October 25, 2010

Time Travel Romance Author Marissa St James

Joining us today is author Marissa St James. Marissa is a lifelong New England Yankee who grew up with a love of books. She loves writing time travel romance and will now and again try other genres to challenge her imagination and writing skills. In another persona, she’s worked as an e-pub editor.

[Anne] When did you first realize you wanted to be a writer, Marissa?

[Marissa] I can’t say there was a moment when I realized I wanted to write. I believe many challenges I’ve taken on through the years were stepping stones to writing and just became a natural progression.

[Anne] Tell us about your latest book.

[Marissa] Touched By Love is the story of a near future doctor who is forced to flee for her life and ends up in the past. It’s in the past that Shelby discovers the kind of medicine she’s always wanted to practice. When trouble follows her, the reluctant, disfigured hero finds he’ll do anything to protect her.

[Anne] What inspired you to write this story?

[Marissa] I wanted to try something in time travel that was a little different than what I’ve previously written.

[Anne] It sounds intriguing. Do you have anything new in the works?

[Marissa] I have two stories I’m currently focusing on. One involves time travel (of course) and is about a missing pouch of gemstones and how far a couple of people will go to retrieve it.

Another in the works is a contemporary, about a man who’s supposed to testify in court against his boss but is accused of his wife’s disappearance. When another woman disappears a few years later, he’s eyed again as a suspect.

[Anne] What is your writing process like? Are you a plotter or a pantster?

[Marissa] I’m a bit of both. Sometimes I get an idea for a story and I’ll write a series of questions to plot it. Other times I get a vague idea and just run with it, see where it’ll go.

[Anne] If you could be anyone of your characters, which one would you chose to be and why?

[Marissa] It would definitely be Meryl Spellbinder. She has a quirky sense of humor, loves puns, is a romantic at heart, but she’s all business when circumstances call for it.

[Anne] Okay, say your publisher has offered to fly you anywhere in the world to do research on an upcoming book, where would you most likely want to go?

[Marissa] That would definitely have to be Scotland. I’m not a traveler but that’s about the only place I’ve ever wanted to visit both for pleasure and inspiration.

[Anne] Here’s another fun question. You’ve just been informed that your latest release was a NY Times bestseller and Hollywood wants to turn it into a movie. What actors would you choose to play your main characters?

[Marissa] The only book I’ve ever fantasized about in this regard is my first one, Spellbinder. I’ve often imagined Liv Tyler as Meryl and maybe Sam Worthington as Tristan.

[Anne] Great choices! What type of books do you like to read when you’re not writing?

[Marissa] Let’s see. Time travel, paranormal, historical fiction, contemporary, suspense... I’ll read almost anything that presents a good plot.

[Anne] Name three things you can’t live without (excluding spouses and family because that’s a given).

[Marissa] This is a fun question. The answer would have to be books, laptop (for writing) and books. (Did I mention books???)

[Anne] LOL. What advice would you give to any aspiring writers out there?

[Marissa] While plot and character development are important, you have to go deeper and pay close attention to grammar skills. Too many aspiring writers don’t have the essential basics for writing. This is the kind of thing that needs constant attention.

The other thing would be to pay attention to publisher guidelines. They’re set up for a reason. If you want to acquire “professional” status as a writer then you need to pay attention to what the publisher wants.

[Anne] Where can we find you on the web? And where can we purchase your books?

[Marissa] will take you to my website

Touched By Love (and several other books) can be found at

I also have some releases at

[Anne] Is there anything else you’d like to add?

[Marissa] If you’re really determined to become a writer, hone your skills, study and work on your weak points. Don’t let rejections get you down too much. We all go through them. They’re pointers to what we’re doing wrong and where we need to focus.

Most of all, have fun with it. If it ceases to be enjoyable, it just becomes another job.

[Anne] Wonderful advice, Marissa! Thanks so much for the interview.


Angela said...

First off, Anne, thank you for having Meryl as a guest. Meryl, you're a talented writer. Your characters have such depth and your description takes readers on the journey right along with the characters.

Keep pushing forward for your true friends are always behind you.