I've written three Christmas novellas, but I'll talk about just one, Kaetlyn's Cup of Christmas Cheer. When I wrote The Gilded Curse set at Jekyll Island, GA during the waning years of the Gilded Age, I did a lot of research about the wealthy who belonged to the Jekyll Island Millionaires' Club.
Soon after Kaetlyn Murphy lands in America, she is hired as a housemaid to a wealthy family. Her new friend, fellow Irishman Trevor Lewis finds work as a delivery man, and soon love blossoms between the two. But when Trevor loses interest in her, Kaetlyn is certain she has said the wrong thing once again. With Christmas approaching, Kaetlyn leaves town for her employers’ winter estate. But will she ever see Trevor again?
I love a Christmas tree with pretty presents, especially shiny presents, under it, so I enjoy wrapping presents and I take great care wrapping the presents and usually select one paper design or color for each person. (It also helps find whose presents are whose on Christmas Day.) I enjoy going to Christmas Eve service at church, then Christmas Eve dinner at my stepdaughter's house that is a homemade Italian meal made by her husband who makes the most fantastic lasagna. His three grown daughters usually join us and they do their Christmas presents that night. My newer tradition is the second Christmas tree I've added with lighthouse ornaments I've collected from our many visits to lighthouses.
What’s next for your writing?
I had two novellas that were published recently. The first came out in September called, Railroaded in Key West, and the other was released in October called, Book Lady of the Bayou, which are part of The Librarians' Journey collection.
What’s the best writing tip you’ve learned or been given you’d like to share?
#1. Don't try to write like everyone else does. Books are as different as their authors are, and there no "one size fits all" way to work. #2. What works best for me is to set a word count goal for each day, whenever I have time to do it. I don't commit to a certain time every day, but I try not to quit before I hit or exceed my word count.
The above answer plus realizing there are different paths to the goal of being published, and there is no one right way. I got so stressed out and confused the first couple of years because I heard so many different "Do's: and "Don'ts."
Any last words or tips?
While marketing is important to promoting your book, spending all your time writing blogs and being on social media does not get the book written. Social media can be a tremendous time-suck. .
Are there any other books that you’d like to tell my readers about?
Yes, all of my books! I've written two different historical series, one set in the late 1800s, and the other set in World War II, with hopefully a third coming soon in the latter. My last novel, Abigail's Secret, is my first dual-time novel, as well as first time writing a contemporary story (one part of the dual time).
That's sounds intriguing. If you'd like to learn more about Marilyn's books, here are some links to get you started.