Monday, February 14, 2011

Molly O'Keefe

Happy Valentine's Day!!

What a great day to GET LOST IN A CONTEMPORARY ROMANCE!

Today, I'm thrilled to be hosting RITA ® Award winning contemporary romance author, Molly O'Keefe, who just happens to be, not only one of my valued critique partners, but also one of my closest friends. In addition to her RITA® win, she's also won two RT Reviewers' Choice Awards as well as numerous other accolades. She's has 18 novels published by Harlequin and two fabulous longer romances coming out from Bantam Dell in 2012.


ABOUT MOLLY

Molly O'Keefe has always known she wanted to be a writer (except when she wanted to be a florist or a chef and the brief period of time when she considered being a cowgirl). And once she got her hands on some romances, she knew exactly what she wanted to write.

She published her first Harlequin romance at age 25 and hasn't looked back. She loves exploring every character's road towards happily ever after.

Originally from a small town outside of Chicago, she went to university in St. Louis where she met and fell in love with the editor of her school newspaper. They followed each other around the world for several years and finally got married and settled down in Toronto, Ontario. They welcomed their son into their family in 2006, and their daughter in 2008. When she's not at the park or cleaning up the toy room, Molly is working hard on her next novel, trying to exercise, stalking Tina Fey on the internet and dreaming of the day she can finish a cup of coffee without interruption.

His Wife For One Night

February 2011
ISBN 9780373716883
Jack McKibbon knows the score when he offers to marry his best friend Mia Alatore. He's fixing a bad situation for her—that's all—they aren't making a real life together. She wants to stay on the ranch and he's got his studies and inventions elsewhere. Still, this arrangement is a good deal for both of them.
Until that one night…
A sexy interlude with Mia makes Jack rethink their relationship…and their future. But all his plans grind to a halt when she asks for a divorce. Once upon a time, Jack might have agreed. But now that he knows the chemistry they share, he's not giving up a second chance to be with his wife.



And now, let's get to know Molly!

Maureen: What’s your favorite holiday?
Molly: I practically grew up in a Norman Rockwell painting - I come from a small town, had a great childhood, two loving parents. And a fantastic extended family. All those things seem most special as I get older on Thanksgiving. I get to go home, take my kids, see friends from High School. My cousins arrive, most of them from far-flung African places, we play bloody games of spoons and my cousin makes a Hello Dolly Pie, and I eat until I can't stand myself - which is a surprising amount. It is without a doubt the best holiday ever.

Maureen: What’s your favorite movie of all time?
Molly: Oh, man. My two favorites are Good Will Hunting and Field of Dreams - which makes me sound sort of like I'm a seventy year old man. But, there you have it. I also have a huge soft spot for sports movies and now that I have kids - those Pixar movies are pretty hard to beat. Also, for pure nostalgia and belly laugh pain - A Weekend At Bernie's. When they staple the toupee on? Kills me.

Maureen: Where do you most like to read and how often?
Molly: In my bed and as often as I can.

Maureen: What’s the first book you remember reading?
Molly: The Laura Ingalls Wilder books - Little House on The Prairie. I ADORED those books. However, I remember my mom reading The Little Match Girl story to me when I was a kid - it wasn't until I was in college that I learned the little girl died. My mother changed the ending so that the family the little girl was watching through the window let her in. I feel this is somehow formative but I'm not sure why.

Maureen: What sound or noise do you love?
Molly: Not to sound totally cliché, but when my kid's really start to laugh and can't stop - it's pretty infectious. I also love when my mom answers the phone saying "hi sweetie" Oh! And the ice cream truck on super hot days... mmmm ice cream truck.

Maureen: What’s your favorite kind of cheese?
Molly: One of my favorite things in the world is cheddar cheese, apple and a good salty cracker. But I also love this aged Gouda - Beemster? Something like that, anyway it's got salt crystals in it. So good.

Maureen: What was the first story you remember writing?
Molly: Oh a ridiculous Nancy Drew knock off. But not the old Nancy Drew - the newer Nancy Drew Files which was filled with page long descriptions of what Ned and Nancy were wearing. My mother listened to me read every chapter of that book.

Maureen: What’s something you’d like to tell your fans?
Molly: That every single email I get from reader is like receiving a letter of validation. Those notes are gold and I couldn't appreciate them more.

Maureen: Is Elvis really dead?
Molly: YES! And did you hear, most of the pain he suffered from was from impacted bowels. Could you imagine?

Maureen: What’s the first thing you do when you finish writing a book?
Molly: Let Maureen buy me a drink.

Maureen: Which I am ALWAYS glad to do. :) If you were given a chance to travel to the past where would you go and why?
Molly: I would go out West before the Civil War - homesteading. I can come back though, right? I visit for a few weeks and then come home to a shower and some cable television?

Maureen: Sure, you can come back. :) What would I do without you? What do you like on your burger? (and do you take your burger veggie or beefy?)
Molly: One of the best burgers in the world is at The Auld Spot on the Danforth in Toronto. They make their own veggie burger, but then you add cheese and bacon...

Maureen: How convenient that it's only 2 blocks from my house. :) Which of your characters would you most/least to invite to dinner, and why?
Molly: Oh, what a fun question - for His Wife For One Night - the hero is based loosely on my cousin who is a Hydro engineer and spent a year in the Peace Corp in Uganda. He, and Jack the character he is based on, tell incredible stories. Absolutely I would want them for dinner. Mia - the heroine, needs to be invited to more dinner parties. She's shy and crusty, but her soul needs to hear more stories.

Maureen: Do you read reviews of your books? If so, do you pay any attention to them, or let them influence your writing?
Molly: I do read reviews and sometimes I'll read something in a review and mull it over for next time, but so often what's one person's awful is another person's amazing. Such is the power of books, a highly personal medium.

Maureen: What dreams have been realized as a result of your writing?
Molly: My husband and I are taking our two kids to New Zealand for six weeks in August. Thank You Bantam!!

Maureen: Tea or Coffee? And how do you take it?
Molly: Coffee with milk all day long.

Maureen: What does it mean to love someone?
Molly: It means feeling more of everything. More joy, more fear, more disappointment, more bliss.

Maureen: Wow. What a great answer. You should write romance novels! LOL. What’s your favorite kid joke?
Molly: Right now we've got a knock knock joke spree at our house, so I will say any joke that ISN'T a knock knock joke.

Maureen's Gotta Ask, Molly's Gotta Answer

Maureen: Will you share some of your guilty pleasures?
Molly: Guilty Pleasure....brownies. I love brownies. And those old Elizabeth Lowell romances that are so un-PC they're practically a lesson in how not to be treated by a man. But there you have it. Chocolate and alpha-males.

Molly Asks Her Fans:

What's your favorite romance hook? Secret babies? Marriage of Convenience? Sheiks?

Book Giveaway!

TWO random lucky commenter will win a copy of HIS WIFE FOR ONE NIGHT. Because Molly's going to be out of town today, and likely unable to respond to comments or answer questions, we'll give commenters until the end of the day tomorrow (February 15th, 2011) to post their comments!

Note: Offer void where prohibited. Prizes will be mailed to North America addresses only. If an electronic Advanced Reading Copy (ARC) is available, the author may utilize that option for International participants. Odds of winning vary due to the number of entrants.

Keep in touch with Molly here:

http://www.molly-okeefe.com/
http://www.drunkwritertalk.blogspot.com/
Facebook Page

Make sure to come back tomorrow when Heather hosts the fabulous Elizabeth Hoyt.

27 comments:

  1. Hey Thanks so much for having me - I have to admit, I've been staring at those Jake Gyllenhall pictures for far too long. Thanks for the morning inspiration!!!

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  2. Hello Molly!

    I love a good marriage of convenience. Especially if the couple hates each other in the beginning. I like to see them spar and bicker and finally break down the barriers. I love the moment when the couple truly see the other person for the first time!

    His Wife for One Night looks like a great read!

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  3. Thanks Stacie - I love Marriage of Convenience too. I especially loved them in historicals - they make so much sense considering the time and how marriage was used as a way to gain land and favor... so when I started to write His Wife For One Night I wanted to figure out a way that I could have that same kind of conflict but in a contemporary setting. It was a lot of fun to try and figure out!

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  4. I generally read historical romances and love reading the books where the H/h get caught in a compromising position and are forced to marry. They generally have alot of funny parts in them, which I love

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  5. Spoons! I love it. I haven't played since high school and I'm going to have to teach my grandkids. Yikes...that statement hurt.

    Thank you for the reminder of those fun game nights with friends, Molly. What an amazing story and interview. Welcome to GLIAS and I hope you continue to come back many times.

    ~~Angi

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  6. I know I mentioned it on the SuperRomance Authors blog but I HAVE TO JUST HAVE SAY IT AGAIN His Wife for one night sounds wonderfull and the cover is beautifull and the inspiration for the book still is the best one I ever heard !

    All of the very best to everyone and a very happy valentines day

    Desere

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  7. Forgot to answer your quetion. My favorite is a good old damsel in distress rescued by the hero. But my secret favorites are also PC incorrect Pirate stories. I was in love with pirates/privateers (I know there's no logic) before Johnny Depp made them popular. LOL

    ~~Angi

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  8. Hi Molly! Welcome to GLIAS. What a fun interview :)

    Okay, so I'm totally jealous over New Zealand! Have a wonderful, wonderful trip.

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  9. Heather! Thanks - I still can't believe we're doing it. I actually REALLY can't believe I'm doing it with a five year old a three year old and a camper van for six weeks. Am I insane??? Fingers crossed we all survive!!

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  10. Angi - Spoons with cousins is something Maureen and I share - that both our family's play full contact bloody spoons is just hilarious. I love it because it's a game all the kids can play too. Those are really good memories... and frankly, who doesn't love a pirate? Though did you guys see John Mayer on the Grammy's last night? He looked like a very bloated sick pirate. Not a sexy pirate look.

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  11. Desere - thanks for coming by and I agree the cover is totally gorgous, largely because the hero looks the Mentalist who is super hot. Thanks - for those who don't know the hero of this book is based on my wild adventuring cousin Caleb who spent a summer drilling wells in the Darfur region of Sudan. It was dangerous and he's totally crazy - AND he always wins at spoons.....

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  12. June! Thanks for stopping by - the beginning of Elizabeth Hoyt's latest has a GREAT twist on that compromising situation - and I understand she'll be here tomorrow!!! Nice, roll out the red carpet because I love her books!!!

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  13. LOL about John Mayer last night. That nailed it. And where was he looking when he turned out during that trio? Bizarre.

    Yes, blood has been shed in the McGowan clan over spoons. We haven't played for years, though. I think we're all too old or out of shape to sit on the floor, not to mention dive across the room. I have a cousin who used to grab them all, hold them above his head (he's the tallest), then toss them out one by one (sometimes down flights of stairs) and the rest of us would fight over each one. Good times. ;)
    Seriously. Some of the best times of my life.

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  14. Any situation where the hero and heroine are thrown into a difficult situation will do. It helps if they also dislike each other intensely, at least for the first half of the novel!

    The rest is author magic!

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  15. I forgot to answer the question... I like marriage of convenience, but most I've read in a contemporary setting seem so contrived to me. "You have to marry or you're cut out of the will." Like that ever happens.

    BUT, the way Molly did it in His Wife for One Night I completely believed. And it was so heartbreaking. LOVE this book. :)

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  16. Hi Molly!

    Your Thanksgiving stories are always so awesome. You need to write a Thanksgiving book.

    I love the friends to lovers story. I actually tried it with one of my unfinished manuscripts and can testify first hand that it is insanely hard to do. I have such respect for authors who get it right.

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  17. Great post, Molly!

    I like the marriage of convenience plot in a really good historical. Surprisingly, over the years I've come to also enjoy the secret baby theme. I once swore I'd never read one--and now I write them. Who knew?

    His Wife For One Night is a great contemporary twist on the historical M of C. You really pulled it off!

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  18. Marriage of Convenience for me too! And Pirates. Lots of sexy pirates. Great post and a great book with a cool cover.
    Ann

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  19. Hi Molly, Does the longer book sticker mean we get more fabulous writing? Yippee! Having just finished writing a secret baby/secret mother story, I'd have to go with that. Though I do love a good friends-to-lovers story.

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  20. So late today, but I finished a book recently, Maureen, will you buy me a drink? ;) Molly, it's a pleasure to read all about you. I love the sound of a child's infectious laugh. There's nothing better. Nothing better than a smile. Good Will Hunting is an awesome movie! And Super Romances make me stay up all night reading.

    Hmmm, since I love suspense, I'll have to stay with the woman in jeopardy, doesn't fit Supers I'm afraid, but there you have it. Thank you for sharing your success with Get Lost in a Story.

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  21. Great interview Molly and Maureen! I just finished reading Susan Elizabeth Phillip's What I did for Love, a marriage of convenience story. Great tension when a married couple try to live a platonic life. His Wife for One Night sounds like a great read, Molly, and wow . . . New Zealand!!!

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  22. Maureen! (Sorry I didnt' get back here last evening - we were at Great Wolf Lodge with spotty WiFi) John Mayer was looking into the prompter because HE DIDN'T KNOW THE WORDS TO JOLENE?? Honestly.

    And I tried the over my head technique this year, but it only worked with the kids...who all started to cry.

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  23. Hey GJillian - I agree author magic can make me like most hooks. There's nothing I will say no to off the bat - except oddly, Shieks. I really don't get the appeal.

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  24. Simone - I agree friends to lovers is so hard, because you ahve to write the moment where one of them sees the other as a sexual being rather than just a friend. I cheated in HIs WIfe For One Night and had them both have sexy sex feelings for the other but unable to act on them becasue they were always split up. Cheating. Totally cheating.

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  25. Hey Mary and Ann! Thanks for coming by! And thanks for your help with this book. Mary Sullivan and Ann Lethbridge are in our critique group. I steal stuff from them all the time.

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  26. Hi Molly! My favorite romance hook is the Starcross Lovers, especially if it involves a lot of repentance. I love a good tortured hero!

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  27. Just had to pop in and wave to everyone at GLIAS -- really loved the Q&A, Molly and Maureen! I want to go out with you to that burger place in Toronto. ;)

    As for hooks, I like the disguised hero or heroine -- they're secretly doing cool undercover things but pretending to be a normal, everyday person -- but, eventually, they have to reveal themselves...

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