Meredith Allard, author of Her Dear and Loving Husband and Her Loving Husband's Curse, agreed to answer some questions for me about her writing career and her life. Enjoy!
Do you like writing about the supernatural and things that just aren't a normal part of our everyday lives?
I do like writing about the supernatural, which was surprising to me. Prior to writing Her Dear & Loving Husband, I had never written about the supernatural. My previous novels were historical fiction, which is all about research and facts, so I had never taken such an imaginative flight of fancy before. Through writing the Loving Husband Trilogy, I realized that I liked writing about characters that were more than human because the possibilities were endless. I wasnít held down to the limitations presented by mere mortals. And I liked that I could take what I learned about vampire folklore and write about it the way I wanted toóI could put my own spin on the legends.
The Salem witch trials are fascinating to study and to read about. Did you decide to write a story that involved the Salem witch trials, or did you have the main storyline planned out and the witch trials pop in there unexpectedly?
When I originally sat down to write Her Dear & Loving Husband, I had no intention of writing a piece of historical fiction, which is odd since everything I had written previously was historical fiction and Iím the executive editor of a literary journal of historical fiction. My first ideas for the story were about a vampire who falls in love again after mourning his dead wife for years, and I thought it would be a simple, modern-day tale. I had a few scenes in mind before I sat down to start writing. Then I had to decide where to set the story, and through the process of elimination I decided on the northeastern part of the U.S. I pulled up a map of the northeastern states, saw Massachusetts, saw Salem, and that was that. Of course, once I settled on Salem, Massachusetts as the setting the historical fiction person in me had to use the Salem Witch Trials in the story somehow. It was a blessing in disguise since the inclusion of the witch hunts added a depth to the story that wasnít in my original vision.
This is a supernatural story, yet it is a love story, one that reaches down through time. Which part of it reached out to you more deeply?
I love both love stories. For me, the reason the present-day love story is so touching is because it is preceded by over three hundreds years of deep, abiding love. I loved writing the present-day scenes precisely because of the context of the past.
Witches, vampires, werewolves Ė your story has them all. Can we expect any more supernatural creatures in the sequels?
Weíll be seeing the same cast of characters in the next two books, so there will continue to be vampires, witches, and werewolves. I would argue that thereís a ghost of sorts in Her Dear & Loving Husband, and a ghost of a different sort appears in the third and final book.
How many books are going to be in this series?
The Loving Husband series is a trilogy, so there will be three books. Iím working on Book Three now (as in literally right now, as soon as Iím done answering these questions. Thatís okay, I donít mind. Iím having fun answering them!).
I know that book #2 has already been published. When can we expect book #3 to be published? Can you tell us any of what books 2 and 3 are about?
The second book, Her Loving Husbandís Curse, takes up where Her Dear & Loving Husband left off. In Book Two, we follow James and Sarah as they continue on their journey, and while they find some joys, they also find some sorrows. I donít want to say too much about Book Three since itís not out yet. I will say it will be published around March 2013.