The Literary Vixen presents…
Joining us today is Laura M. Baird! Her newest release, Only You for the Holidays: A Christmas Romance released on December 13th 2021.
How long have you been writing?
I’ve been writing my current genre, romance, since 1995. I wrote off and on for many years while raising my family then returning to college for dental hygiene. It wasn’t until around 2014/2015 that I began to write more seriously and worked toward publishing.
Describe a typical writing day.
My schedule varies depending on other commitments (as I help with my mom and share my office with our son who’s working remotely). Typically I’ll try to get in a morning walk/workout, shower, eat, address emails, scan social media, address any promo/tasks, determine what’s for dinner, spend time with hubby, then write in the late afternoon and into the evening. I like to have my office to myself when I’m writing.
Where do you get your inspiration for your books?
Inspiration truly comes from everywhere! Life experiences of mine, family, or friends; a news article or current event; a what-if situation; a writing challenge; even an experience I imagine myself having.
One of the faster stories I wrote was book one of my Shifter Clans series, writing it in two weeks. An anthology call came from my publisher, Evernight, looking for stories about Alpha male shifters and strong females who weren’t going to just roll over for them. An idea instantly came to mind about a Native American hawk shifter and a former analyst with the government. My heroine suffered an injury, losing part of a limb, but it didn’t stop her from living life to the fullest. My hero wasn’t intimidated by her, and she found she could let down her guard with him. While my story wasn’t chosen for the anthology, Evernight wanted to publish it separately. So I added to the story which took another week. With secondary characters continuing to talk to me, three more books resulted.
Do you have a favorite character that you have written? If so, who? And what makes them so special.
My immediate thought is to say no, because I enjoy every story I write. However, I really loved writing my character, Michelle, from Kiss Me at Sunset. She’s 50, widowed; a counselor who is caught off-guard by her attraction to Xander (52), a bouncer/musician. Michelle doesn’t let age define her. The story was fun and spicy with two mature characters who knew exactly what they wanted and weren’t afraid to grab onto it.
When you’re writing an emotionally draining (or sexy, or sad, etc) scene, how do you get in the mood?
I truly immerse myself into the scene, imagining myself as that character; wondering how I’d feel, what I’d say and do. Scenes play out like movie in my head as I describe what’s happening, trying to make it flow seamlessly. Sometimes challenging scenes can take several days and rewrites, to get it right! If I’m stuck, I’ll walk away and let it stew for a while before I return to it.
If you had to describe yourself in three words, what would they be?
Optimist, pleaser, tenacious
When writing a series how do you keep things fresh, for both your readers and also yourself?
I try to keep stories fresh with little twists, the unexpected, even role-reversals. I give characters their own challenges and let them determine how they’re going to work their way through choices.
Are you working on anything at the present you would like to share with me?
My current work-in-progress is a vampire novella, the Mardi Gras Masked Ball series. It’s a shared world, where five authors are writing about characters revolving around Mardi Gras in New Orleans. Only recently have I been writing more paranormal stories, and I’m very much enjoying. My vampire character, Trevor, was orphaned in France in the 1600s. He aligned with others who disguised their true evil nature and he was turned without consent. Afterwards, he withdrew from life, from self-pleasures, as if he had to repent for the rest of his life. He spent his time trying to right the wrongs in the world, becoming a philanthropist. His love interest (his mate) awakens his dormant senses and shows him there is no denying their connection, their desires.
What advice would you give to other authors?
While I still feel like an emerging author, making a name for myself, there are times when imposter syndrome is real. I have to continue to tell myself to keep doing what I love. Write what I love, what I feel passion for. I’ve said, my writing may not be for everyone, but it’s for someone. And that’s the beauty with the romance genre; there are endless varieties and choices, that someone out there is going to connect with my stories.
What is the one thing you want people to know about you and your books?
I’d like readers to know the true joy I have in creating something others will enjoy. It’s scary and thrilling at the same time. The thought that I can take the reader away for an hour or two by making them smile, laugh, sigh, even tear up is humbling and rewarding.
Thank you Laura M. Baird for chatting with me! I will include her information down below. Check out her newest release, Only You for the Holidays today!
She made excuses to stay away.
He’ll give her a reason to remain.
Piper Deacon had a spotless flying record while serving in the Army until a careless mishap from her flight partner had her questioning her own skills and responsibility. Foolish pride kept her away from home for too long; the one place she should’ve known she could always return to no matter what. When circumstances force her back to Idaho, she’ll have to face life-altering decisions which include whether or not to succumb to the match-making devices of her mother and co-conspirator friend. With the appealing lawman, Logan Shaw, in her path, will she realize the easy choice right in front of her is all she’ll ever need?
Logan Shaw didn’t always walk the straight line, but service in the Marines gave him a better direction. After twenty-one years away, he’s settling back home, working with the Sheriff’s Department, and wondering if he has a future that’ll include a woman to love. Thanks to the machinations of his mom and her friend, he’s already halfway there with a woman he has yet to meet. And when he does, can he convince Piper you really can come home again?
I’m living life in the Pacific Northwest, enjoying family and the chance to make my author career soar. A veteran and semi-retired dental hygienist; a wife, mother, and grandmother; I’ve traversed the country from the East Coast to the West, sprinkling tidbits of my journey into my writing. I also write about adventures I may not otherwise experience myself. My goal is to provide laughter and swoon-worthy moments, as well as captivating stories in which the reader can either find their own adventure or escape.
I enjoy engaging with readers and authors, and love the encouragement and support not only among the romance community, but the entire writing community. With many ways to follow me, I invite you along on the journey. See my website for choices.
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