Today I’m featuring Marissa St. James, who has written several time travel and contemporary romances. Come join us and get lost in the mists of time.
What’s your favorite thing about writing time travel romance?
I think time travel opens up a whole lot of possibilities. You can write fact, fiction or something in between. You can do things with your characters that other genres wouldn’t allow. You can plunk down a character in a situation that doesn’t have to be logical, and what they do with it can be a lot of fun.
Many time travel romance writers stick with one time alternate period, but you’ve written stories set in two, one on Scotland and one in the early American Revolutionary. What are some of your favorite research techniques?
Actually, I also have set a time travel story in medieval England.
I try to keep the research to a minimum for two reasons. Authors are always told to research their stories before getting into the writing. I get an idea for a story but I never know in what direction it’ll go or what will be involved. I’ve had stories that did a total turn-about so that whatever research I’d done early on was no longer valid. The second reason is that researching can be ‘dangerous’. Imagine doing research about a specific battle. You find the information, then a side note distracts you. After reading that and making some notes, something else distracts. It might keep going that way until you’ve completely forgotten what you were originally researching. I tend to research the point I need exactly when I need it. This way I avoid the distractions. If it’s something I’m really interested in, I’ll make a note of it and return another time.
If you could go back in time, what period would you choose and why?
LOL. Now that’s a tough one. I’d probably want to be like my namesake character, Meryl Spellbinder, from the Highland Eyes books. Different situations put her in different times, although she is kind of tethered to the early fourteenth century. There are two time periods I find fascinating. One deals with the Plantagenets, family of Richard the Lionheart and the other deals with the Tudors, Henry VIII, his children and his wives — all eight of them.
Of the books you’ve had published, do you have a favorite?
My favorite would have to be The Heart Remembers. (set in England) This story deals with a young woman who is subtly prevented from marrying the love of her life. Sylvia and Aubrey are sent back in time during the reign of King John. They have no memory of their contemporary lives. The romance in this story deals with two couples, one middle-aged, the other, teens. Both couples have trials they must face if their love is to survive and grow. It was fun, as well as a challenge to write.
What do you do when you’re not writing?
During the winter months I do a lot of knit and crochet. I’ve got quite a collection of afghan patterns and I’m trying to get the hang of lace knit/crochet. The afghans go to a couple groups to be auctioned off. I’ll also be working on a quilt for my son and his wife. In between the craft work, I read as much as I can. There’s never enough time for that so I try to fit it in wherever possible.
What’s next in store for Marissa?
LOL Even Marissa isn’t sure of that. I’ve been working on several projects: the sequel to Band of Gold, called Ring of Truth; book 3 in the McKinley’s Jewel series, A Diamond In the Rough; and a paranormal western trilogy, Those McAllister Girls. One story involves a shape-shifter, but all three stories involve some time travel.
Where can you find Marissa? All of her books are listed on her bookshelf, and you can also check out her blog.
Thank you for stopping by, Marissa. I’m a sucker for a time travel romance, so I’m definitely adding The Heart Remembers to my reading pile.
If you’re a romance writer and want to be featured on my Writer Wednesday meet and greet sessions, contact me through the contact page above.