Janis McCurry

An author of wonderful romance novels in several subgenres, Ms. McCurry says: “I write romance and I’ve published 2 romantic suspense, one supernatural romance with ghosts, and a shared world romance novella. With co-writer Lynn Mapp, I’ve published three out of a five-book series with the fourth one coming out in April 2021.”

Do you have a writing routine? Where and when do you write?

My routine consists of a lot of what I call “head work”. I can’t sit in front of a computer and start putting words on the page. I take 3-4 days mapping up the scene goal in my head, snippets of dialogue, setting, etc., before I sit down to the computer. I don’t have an office, so I write at my dining room table and sometimes in my living room.

What do you do when you hit a wall with your writing?

More head work. Sigh. It happens and I go back to the core story. Goal, motivation, and conflict. What does my character need and how can s/he get it?

The eternal question: Are you a “pantser”, a “plotter”, or something else entirely?

I started out as a pantser and wrote myself into a corner too many times. So I try to plot as much of the story as I can on a calendar I print out. I need to see the timeline and write where the scenes occur over the months. Don’t get me wrong. Sometimes, the plot changes!

What’s the last book you read that made you go “wow!”?

Ellen Tracy’s series The Adventures of Anabel Axelrod is a “wow” for me. 

What book or author do you often find yourself recommending and why?

Anything by Jennifer Crusie because she is masterful at creating humorous, relatable characters that you wish you knew.

What’s on your To Be Read pile?

Currently, a non-fiction book by Elaine Welteroth titled “More Than Enough” that chronicles her journey as a Black woman. 

What advice do you have for readers?

Read what makes you happy!

What author, past or present, would you wish to have a long conversation with?

Ellen Tracy

What’s the first book you can remember reading on your own?

I was crazy about animals and the first book I remember choosing was Black Beauty by Anna Sewell. That started me on a quest reading every Albert Payson Terhune and his collie books, Walter Farley and his Black Stallion series of books, and Glenn Balch (an Idaho writer) and his horse books.

What books and/or authors have most influenced you as an author?

  • Jennifer Crusie
  • Anne Stuart
  • Nora Roberts

What do you most enjoy about being a writer?

Answering the “what ifs” in a story. What if this happened?

What do you least enjoy about being a writer?

Writing is hard!! As an Indie writer, it’s hard to gain visibility.

What would you tell a new writer?

It’s a tough gig. You have to want it even in the face of possible rejection.

Thanks to author Janis McCurry for participating in our Idaho Author Interview series. If you’re interested, or would like to recommend someone, please contact the IWU website editor.

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