Sunday, August 21, 2011

Interview with Romance Author Celia Yeary

I'm Celia Yeary, a romance author who is drifting into Women's Fiction. My life revolves around my husband, our home, grandsons, the community, and our church. Before early retirement, I taught biology to high school students in a private military boarding school. I loved my job, but decided to try something new.

This is Celia's second time back and guess what I found out about her? She is a seventh-generation Texan. Wow! Now how awesome is that? Welcome back to my blog, Celia. Please tell us about your new book.

Thank you, Linda. I'm very happy to be here, once more. My newest book is titled Wish for the Moon, a novel that does not fit any exact genre. It does have a sweet love story, but the center of the tale is 16-yr-old Annie McGinnis who, in 1901, lives on a farm with her family in North Texas. Her life changes when a stranger, Max Landry, walks to their house and asks for work.

During the 3-year span of the story, Annie becomes the caretaker for her big slow-witted brother, her mother until she dies, her widower father, and a local blind man who has no place to go. She even attempts—and succeeds—at rescuing Max from the hangman's noose. Eventually, grown-up Annie gets her wish, the one she asks for every night of a full moon, the one her mother always told her: "Annie, girl, you might as well wish for the Moon."

I love this title and the book cover. Where did you get your inspiration for this novel?

Partly from a coal-mining ghost town in North Texas. When I researched the town, I knew I wanted it in a story, but what kind of story? Instead, I created Annie who wished to see the world, or at least see what lay just over the county line. Then I created Max, who entered her world, and would become the instrument for her to see the next county when he is arrested for murder by the Texas Rangers and taken back to the coal-mining town.

Your website and blog says, “Romance...and a little bit o' Texas.” Are all your stories set in Texas?

Yes, all my stories, historical or contemporary, are set in Texas, the place I know best. My family line goes back seven generations to when Texas was a Republic. And I've lived in several areas of the state. I can't imagine trying to write a story set in, say, Baltimore, or Ogden, or San Francisco. I've visited many, many places, but that doesn't mean I know enough about any of them to use as a story setting. I simply stick with what I know.

That reminds me of Anne of Green Gables when Gilbert told her to write about people and places she knew about. She didn’t like his suggestion at first but eventually realized he was right. What kind of research did you do for this book?

Mainly, I researched Thurber, Texas, the unique coal-mining town in Erath County. It's one county over from Palo Pinto County, where I was born and returned to visit grandparents. I still return to that area because of family. The farm Annie lives on is my grandparent's home, my daddy's birthplace. The house, the well, the orchard and garden, and even the outhouse all come directly from my memory bank of those days gone by. I even used my Granny's rose garden, and the screened-in back porch. That part was very easy.

I love it when authors add real life situations to their stories. Do you usually put real experiences in your books?

Not very much. However, in WISH FOR THE MOON, as I said, I used my grandparent's house for Annie's. They never had running water, and one died in the forties, the other one in the sixties. I use many details in this story from my memory--Granny's big wood-burning stove, the well that had the tin tube to fill with water, and the front porch where Max looks into the front room.

I also mention the "healing water baths" over in Mineral Wells, where my Mother was born and now lives in a nursing home. That entire area is so familiar, and perfect for details in a story.

In MAKING THE TURN, I also use that same house, but updated it a bit in my head so I could use it in the year 2011 for Sara's old homeplace, where her mother remains.
Only these two involve any of my real life experiences. All other stories are completely fictional, although I do know the areas in which I place my stories very well.

Thanks, Celia, for this interview. I know my readers are more enlightened about what kind of author you are. I hope you come back again.

BUY WISH FOR THE MOON at: Willow Moon Publishing and Amazon

Celia Yeary - Romance...and a little bit 'o Texas
http://www.celiayeary.blogspot.com
http://www.celiayeary.com
http://sweetheartsofthewest.blogspot.com

41 comments:

Margaret said...

This sounds like a wonderful story I'd love to read! Count me in!

Margaret
singitm@hotmail.com

Laurean Brooks said...

Anyone who reads Celia Yeary's stories are in for a real treat. Her heroines possess spunk and sass, and her heroes are "real" men. The kind most women can only dream of. "Sigh"

Caroline Clemmons said...

Celia, so nice to see you on Linda's site. You know I love your books, Celia, and wish you megasales.

Linda, I'd love to win WISH FOR THE MOON.

michelle130 said...

This story sounds great.
msuck27@hotmail.co.uk

Darlene said...

I'd love to win this book!

My email address is darlenesbooknook at gmail dot com.

Thanks for the giveaway!

Gail Pallotta said...

Hi Celia,
What a neat sounding book! I love the cover and the "wish for the moon." It sounds as though Annie has a hard life, but I sense a reward coming.

ruthhill74 said...

Since I am having my new Kindle shipped to me, I can now enter e-book giveaways'! Yay! And this is the first one, and it sounds really good! Thanks for the chance!!
ruthaw_1974@yahoo.com

Miss Mae said...

Celia, I love how you set your story in a real place, your Granny's home. My granny too, always used a wood burning stove. Her well was in the backyard, and we always drank from a dipper in the pail (germs? what are those?). I believe she may have turned on electricity in the 1950's, but all she used was the ceiling light bulbs and she exchanged a refrigerator for the ice box (it set on the back screened porch). Your "Wish for the Moon" sounds like it'd make me nostalgic! Here's wishing you many sales, my friend. :)

*since I don't enter contests, please don't drop in my name*

Thank you!

apple blossom said...

please include me in this book giveaway thanks

ABreading4fun [at] gmail [dot] com

Anonymous said...

I have never been to Texas so I'd like to be entered in this giveaway.
sonflower277 at gmail dot com

P.L. Parker said...

I love books that weave history into the fiction!

Maggie Toussaint said...

Hi Celia,

You have another great cover for a Celia Yeary book, and another great story. Your love of Texas and your heritage really shines through your work and your blogs. I'm proud to know you, ma'am.

Maggie

Caroline Clemmons said...

Celia, several people have emailed me concerned because your email had been hacked and we all received emails supposedly from you stranded in Spain. Hope the problem is solved!

Linda Swift said...

A lovely interview, Celia. Wish For The Moon is a wonderful book and I highly recommend it. And what a beautiful title and cover. Good luck with sales. Linda

SherryGLoag said...

I love your book cover and your latest book sounds as wonderful as all your others.
Congratulations and best wishes with the new release.

sherrygloag @ gmail dot com

Jacquie Rogers said...

Celia, congrats on the release of another fabulous book!

Celia Yeary said...

Margaret--I will definitely count you in. Thanks! Celia

Celia Yeary said...

Hi, Laurean, my sweet and funny friend! Yes, you and I both like our heroines to be a little sassy. That, I believe is a Southern term--just like us. Thank you for the compliment.
Celia

Celia Yeary said...

Caroline--I love Linda's blog, and I know you do, too. You're name is in the pot--thanks--Celia

Celia Yeary said...

Michelle--you're in! Celia

Celia Yeary said...

DARLENE--I have your name in. Thanks for visiting...Celia

Celia Yeary said...

Hi, Gail...yes, Annie gets rewarded--and in an odd way you might not figure out until the end. Thanks for visiting...Celia

Celia Yeary said...

Ruth--wonderful! You'll love your Kindle--happy reading. Celia

Celia Yeary said...

MISS MAE--your granny and mine were cut from the same cloth. So many people lived like that, even well into the 20th century--just as their ancestors had, especially in the rural areas. Much different from the towns and cities.
Germs? It's a wonder we all survived!
Thanks for coming by....
Celia

Celia Yeary said...

Hello, Apple Blossom--you are certainly counted in. Thanks for visiting....Celia

Celia Yeary said...

You will be entered, Sonflower--and thanks for dropping by. Celia

Celia Yeary said...

P.L.--me, too--love history, especially something familiar. Celia

Celia Yeary said...

MAGGIE--I'm so glad you came by--you're a good loyal friend, and I appreciate your comment.--thanks! Celia

Celia Yeary said...

CAROLINE--problem solved. There's nothing you can do except change passwords...and so I did that and then tried to reassure everyone. Did you know one of the Yahoo loops put me on Moderation? "To give me time to clean up my contacts and to make sure my account had not been compromised." Egad....what does that mean? I left the group.
Celia

Celia Yeary said...

LINDA-- thanks for the plug--I do appreciate your opinion--always---on my books. I really don't know what I would do without you. Celia

Celia Yeary said...

SHERRY--thank you so much. Celia

Celia Yeary said...

JACQUIE--thanks for the congratulations--and I love the words "great book."
Celia

Linda LaRoque said...

This sounds like a wonderful story, Celia, and I love the title, the cover, and the history your stories impart.

Laurean Brooks said...

Celia,

You have a way of weaving plots to match those spirited characters that keeps the reader wanting more.

Congratulations on your release of "Wish For The Moon." It sounds like you have a lot of problems to solve. That will keep the reader glued to the end

Celia Yeary said...

Coming from you, Linda, I consider that a great compliment. Thanks...Celia

Cynthia Schuerr said...

Celia, I have so much catching up to do with my reading, but I will happily add this one to my list. i love your writing style.
Linda, your blog is lovely. Thank you for bringing Celia to us once again.:-)

Celia Yeary said...

CYNTHIA--thank you so much for your kinds words.

Did you know my heroine in my very first book--
All My Hopes and Dreams--is named Cynthia Harrington? At first, she is a spoiled only child of the richest man in Nacogdoches, Texas, and he tries to make her marry a man he chose.
And so she runs away, all dressed up of course, but....someone is following to return her home, and she gets mad.....

I wanted a name that sounded "wealthy" and used Harrington. The only name that popped in my head was Cynthia, because the name fit a beautiful blond young woman who had everything and was the center of the "society" of the East Texas town in 1880..

Trust me, I redeemed her by the end.
Celia

Cheryl said...

Wonderful interview ladies. I love the cover of this book, and the Anne of Green Gables reference made me smile.

Wishing you the best,

Cheryl

cg20pm00(at)gmail(dot)com

Celia Yeary said...

Thank you, Cheryl...and I love the cover, too. I don't think I could have thought up a better one. The yellow rose and the vintage look just goes with this book.Celia

Charleydog said...

That is a big switch from being a bioogy teacher (practical) to being a fiction writer (whimsy).

pboylecharley AT hotmail DOT Com

Linda Weaver Clarke said...

Congratulations, Ruth Hill. You are the winner of this awesome ebook. I know you'll enjoy it. Thanks, everyone, for your comments. Stay tune for this week's giveaway.