Saturday, October 27, 2007

Interview with Melanie Gilbreath

The Morgan Diaries has made a commitment to bringing you interviews with the heart and soul of romance. In addition to that we also would like to spotlight up and coming writers who we feel will someday make an impact on the genre in years to come. Today’s author is a relative newcomer to the field.

Melanie Gilbreath is an author who has a story in the best selling Midnight Showcase anthology, Spellfire Moons under her belt. Her first novella, Isabella in Pearls, released on October 26 from Dark Eden Press. We were lucky to catch up with Melanie for an interview this past weekend. She tried to run but Morgan O is mighty quick with a lasso.

TMD: Melanie, thanks for stopping by. Would you mind telling our readers a little about Isabella in Pearls?

Well, thanks for asking me TMD.I am tickled to be interviewed.

Isabella in Pearls is a contemporary romance about one uptight, slightly neurotic schoolteacher and one completely unrespectable, rough-around-the-edges guy finding true love and keep it despite their differences. Poor Isabella, she doesn’t know whether to run away screaming or hop on and ride him like a trick pony. You see, Isabella is one of those women to which reputation is very important, appearances are everything, and Jaysun is more than a little disreputable. So as you can imagine sparks, (and clothing) fly in this story.

TMD: How does it feel to go from doing a story in a successful anthology to being the one in the spotlight with Isabella?

Its actually a bit surreal. I was really surprised and pleased that Spellfire Moons did and is still doing so well. Of course mine wasn’t the only awesome story in there. I guess I am suffering from the usual angst writers go through. But I am also excited and very proud of the story.

TMD: Your stories always have a comedic twist to them. How important is comedy to romance in your work?

Very. Real life is funny. Even in the middle of the worst tragedies someone is going to make a smart remark or something and make everyone laugh. As a book reader myself, I think funny is more engrossing to a reader than somber or angsty all the time. I want people to walk away feeling good about the time the spent reading my stories, not feel like they need to take a Zoloft.
TMD: Out of all your characters which one do you feel the most kinship with?

That’s a hard question to answer. In a way, every character has pieces of me in there somewhere so I relate to them all. I get very attached to my peeps, I guess this is why I like to write series. If I had to choose at this time in my life I would have to say Melina Quinn, who is a character in an as yet unpublished series called Winding City

TMD: A lot of people don’t know this, but you were the inspiration for Nikki in J. Morgan’s book How Wicked Can She Go? This is a two parter so get ready.

How does it feel to be the inspiration for a character in someone’s book?

It’s a bit weird. I’ve known J. for quite sometime but I was still surprised at how accurately some of my personal foibles were caught on the page. I am also flattered, I mean, of all the very interesting friends and family J’s got he picked me. *sniffle* I am special….

Have you ever used a friend as a basis for a character in one of your books?

Oh yes, all the time. As a matter of fact Jaysun is based on my husband. I also have this one particular friend that is so quirky and unique I just cannot resist. However, I try not to let the cat out of the bag about who is who. It’s more fun if they guess.

TMD: It is a little known fact a few years ago you created your own world for authors to play in. Do you have any plans to do anything with the world started with Winding City?

Actually, yes. I didn’t make the world up all by myself, I had several close friends helping me. One of them, Jenna Leigh and I are collaborating on the first in what I hope will be a series. This project is my baby and I just know people have as much fun reading it as we are having writing it.

TMD: There is a rumor you married a famous underwear model. Is this true?

*sigh* Yes, I am married to Chief Tighty Whitie, the Firebringer. You know you made his day with this question, right?

TMD: Most authors have a crit group they work with. Do you have one yourself?

I do. It has shrunken some in recent months but is still active.

TMD: How important has it been to have a group in place to offer you support and criticism of your work?

I think its important to have people who will be honest with you about what you’ve written. Also, having a group of writers who understand you makes the rejections easier to handle. And because they understand you and the way you write they are excellent for bouncing new ideas off of.

TMD: Thanks for stopping by Melanie. Morgan O will let you up in a minute but before she does, can you let our readers know where they can find out more about you and your books?

Thanks so much for having me. I had a wonderful time!

Spellfire Moons is available from Midnight Showcase and can be found at this link:

Isabella in Pearls wasreleased on the 26th from Dark Eden Press.


Anonymous said...

Please note that in the beginning of the book it plainly states: Any resemblence of the characters in this book to persons living--or about to be--dead is completely coincidental. Isn't this right Meme..ISN'T IT? *attempts an innocent blink*

Ohhhkay, fine, be that way, I'm telling The Weta Queen and Diva of the Dawn. *sniffs*

La Grande Moobah Latte`
With Extra Whip (and chains)

Meme said...

I am sure I don't know what you mean. I was in no way inspired by any of my friends in Isabella in Pearls *Smiles* I am innocent and sweet. However, if by some remote chance someone besides Pooh did inspire me, I'd have to point out that she is an attention whore and loves every minute of it...
You may snitch to TWQ and DotD if you must. However just remember the pen is mightier than the sword!!!

Jenna Leigh said...

Art imitates life or is the world but a stage? Maybe it's all a big old poker game. If so I win. I've got two of a kind with a Merry and Melody, Mistress Meme. And please remember I'm still the king.

By the way.. Isabella and Jaysun rock!

The Weta Queen said...

I am sure that any resemblance *is* purely coincidental, Jenn. Would Meme ever be so cruel as publish all our naughty little secrets?
In the meantime, Ms Butter-wouldn't-melt, I am waiting. Don't make me sic my army of wetas onto you to get my next installment.

Meme said...

Yes, you are the King, Jelvis. However, I am still the Prettiest!

I am glad you like My Isabella and Jaysun!

Now, I must away as TWQ has threatened me with her vast malevolent army. I must getto writing as I am actually scared of her!

Morgan2x said...

And I'm just a Booh, who plans to keep his mouth shut.


The Diva of the Dawn said...

Yes, it is I, the DotD. I have signed into Blogger for the first time in ages just for Meme, who as we all know, is the sweetest in all the land. And a rising star in the world of romance writing, as well :) Congrats on your first interview, the first of many, I am sure.

I cannot wait to see the Winding City Chronicles, as I was a member of that illustrious and most creative world, long ago. Folks out here in Blogger land, you should be very excited as well, because Winding City is an amazing world and you will love each one of its quirky and charismatic residents.

Mechele Armstrong said...

LOL great interview!

Jenna Leigh said...

I'm still king.. dammit.