Sunday, August 12, 2012

Interview: Bernadette Walsh, Author of Devil's Mountain

Devil’s Mountain
By Bernadette Walsh
Book One of the Devlin Legacy
Genre: Paranormal Romance/Horror
Publisher: Lyrical Press
ISBN: 9781616503697
Number of pages: 122
Word Count: 39,000
Blurb/Book Description:
You will hate Him for all that he's taken, but you will love Him. God help you, you will love Him.

Mary Devlin accepted her fate years ago, to serve Slanaitheoir, the mountain spirit who saved her ancestors from the Irish Famine. The hauntingly beautiful woman submitted to His every caress, His every humiliation, but He’s gone too far by threatening her family.

Mary’s daughter-in-law is now an unwitting pawn in the fickle spirit’s game. Mary must challenge her fate and that of all future Devlin women, but Slanaitheoir is the most powerful being in the land. And when part of her still yearns for His touch and love, how can she fight him and win?

Interview Time

1. When naming your characters, do you give any thought to the actual meaning?
Not really. I tend to use family names as last names for many characters. For the Devlin Legacy I stole the name Devlin from one of my dad’s friends -- and his wife, Mrs. Devlin,  has become one of my biggest fans! 

2. How do you get started with writing a story (as in, how do you start developing the story, how do you get inspired for it).

I find inspiration from varied sources. My second women’s fiction title, THE HOUSE ON PROSPECT, is about three generation of women and it was inspired by a letter my Irish great grandmother wrote to her daughter in New York when the daughter’s husband died. Even eighty years on, the anguish she felt in not being able to comfort her daughter in person is palpable in the thin faded pages and it really spoke to me. I’ve always been interested in how the disruption of immigration can ripple through generations. As the child of an immigrant and the spouse of an immigrant that is something that has impacted my life directly even though I current only live ten miles from where I grew up. My paranormal trilogy was inspired by a remote mountain in Ireland where my parents had a summer house and it too has characters who have immigrated from Ireland to New York, with sometimes disastrous results.

Since I have a long commute, I often just stare our my train window and allow myself today dream. Some of my most compelling heroines have come to me that way. Once I’ve thought through an outline of the story I then put pen to paper, or rather hands to keyboard, and let ‘er rip!

3. What books have most influenced your life most?
I inherited my love of reading from my mother. I used to steal her books, which often included romance novels. My mother is from Ireland and so she introduced me to female Irish writers of her generation, including Edna O’Brien. I wouldn’t say there is one particular book that has influenced me because I read varied types of books. Some of my favorite writers are Tana French, Claire Keegan, Jodi Picoult. I think Alice McDermott has influenced me a lot because our writing styles are similar in that we both mine our family backgrounds for stories and center our books among NY based Irish-American families.

4. What are your current projects?
I am working on a full length novel, THE DEVLIN WITCH. It is meant to be stand alone title so that it shouldn’t be necessary to have read the Devlin Trilogy, but it will be a continuation of my story of the Devlin women. It is centered on two cousins who discover a book of magic in their dead grandmother’s home and it leads them back to Devlin Mountain. They will need to fight other Devlin cousins and each other to be the next Devlin Witch.

5. Name one entity that you feel supported you outside of family members.
My local RWA chapter, Long Island Romance Writers has been helpful and supportive.

6. If you had to do it all over again, would you change anything in your latest book?
Not a thing. Once I finish something I put it away and focus on the next thing. I am a Capricorn and like a little mountain goat, I am always looking for the next mountain to climb. I never look back, in my writing life anyway.

7. Do you have any advice for other writers?
Just do it. Read a few books so you know the basics and then GO! Sure you’ll make mistakes, sure you’ll need to re-write your first draft, but I believe you can only learn writing by actually writing. And don’t confuse writing with reading  about writing, attending conference about writing or hanging out with other writers. Only writing is writing, and while the other stuff is important and can be helpful, I think there is a danger that those other writerly things can serve as distractions or crutches. So sit in the chair and type out the story that only you can tell. Have confidence in your ability to access your own muse.

About the Author

          I have always been a bookworm and had always meant to write a novel “someday.” You know, when I won the lottery and could live in beach house and look out onto the water and feel inspired. Four years ago I decided to stop waiting for my winning lottery ticket and sat down and started writing in between work and family obligations, I piled the words on top of each other until they formed sentences, paragraphs, chapters and eventually a book.  My first book, a contemporary romance, Gold Coast Wives, was published in November 2011. The House on Prospect is my second novel. The first book of my paranormal trilogy, Devil’s Mountain -- Book One of the Devlin Legacy, was published in June 2012. While I’ve hopped around genres, all of my books to date have a common theme: strong women handling what life throws at them the best way they can.
Website @BWalshWriter Twitter | Facebook | Goodreads

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