I first met Sue MacKay at the Nelson Romance Writers Group where she shared her writing experiences with us. She has a contract with Harlequin to provide 4 books a year! Most of us are working on only one, let alone 4. Here Sue tells us about her writing
Writing. I’m lucky that writing is my day job at the moment. Though I do miss the interreaction with work colleagues.
When do you generally write your story, and where?
I have a small office at the back of the garage and I like to put on tidy clothes and pretend I’m going off to work. I work a couple of hours in the morning, then about four in the afternoon. No music. just the sounds of the outdoors which where we are in the bush is loud with bird calls.
What made you decide to write in the first place?
It wasn’t a matter of deciding to write, more a case of having to shut up the voices in my head. There have been stories in there since way back when I first learned what a story was. My dad always encouraged me to put them down on paper.
Why do you write about the topics you do?
I wrote medicals initially because I have a medical background in lab work and there was a shortage of medical writers. But I also write suspense (yet to be published) and I don’t have a background in murdering people.
Where would be your ideal place be to write?
I am lucky I can write anywhere. Nothing seems to interrupt me once I’m settled in. But living and working in the Marlborough Sounds is special.
If money was no object, would you write full time?
I sort of do, working around feeding chooks, entertaining lots of visitors, and dealing to the buckets and buckets of vegetables my DB grows.
Do you find it inspiring living and writing in the Sounds?
Yes, I do. In some ways everything is slower out here which gives me time to think about stories and where they’re going. I never get tired of the view encompassing the hills and the sea, or the native bush and the bird life. I walk up to ten kilometres most days and find that is great for putting story ideas together as I go – and counteracts the result of sitting at a computer for so many hours.
Do you sometimes feel isolated where you live?
Most definitely. Which is why I belong to the Blenheim writers’ group. They are the most supportive, inspiring people and every one of them is determined to make it in the publishing world. Even in winter, when I have an hour’s drive home late at night, I never regret having gone into town for a meeting. Summer is easier out here because we tend to have lots of visitors and I love nothing more than to prepare loads of food to share with them.
Tell us a little something about the book you are currently working on:
I have just finished a medical romance with a secret baby theme. The hero is an American soldier/doctor while the heroine is a doctor. They had a brief fling in Honolulu which resulted in Aimee now eighteen months old. Charlotte has spent months trying to track down Marshall to tell him the news. The story begins on the day he turns up out of the blue on her doorstep. Except for when she went to med school Charlotte has lived her whole life in one town, in the same house, and is surrounded with friends she’s known all her life. Marshall, son of army personel, has never been in the same place for more than fifteen months at a time. There is no way he’ll ever be able to settle down in Taupo forever.
Sue’s books are available on: