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An author with The Wild Rose Press, I strive to bring authors and readers together with a touch of Heart, Soul, and Happily Ever After.

Wednesday, July 15, 2015

Author Interview- Catherine E. McLean

Happy Wednesday readers.
Today I'm welcoming author Catherine McLean to the blog. 

Welcome Catherine, let's start out easy. 
Describe yourself with three words starting with A, B, and C.

Oh, my. The trouble is, I'm a D-Personality: Direct, Decisive, Driven, Determined, and Distressed. The distress is from the frustration others cause by being indirect, indecisive, lacking drive, etcetera. LOL

Suffice to say, I know my personality type because I took a personality test and got the D results.

What are your three favorite things?

My sewing machine, my Cannon digital camera, and my Dell desktop computer.

Are you self-published or with a publishing company (if so, which one?)?

I'm both traditionally and self published. My first book, KARMA AND MAYHEM (paranormal fantasy romance) was published by Soul Mate Publishing. My second, JEWELS OF THE SKY (futuristic adventure/sci-fi, no romance), was self-published because the book tied into the 2012 Mayan calendar's "end of days." Which meant that if JEWELS OF THE SKY didn't get published before the end of 2012, it would be five thousand years until the next opportunity (and I doubted I would live that long).

My latest book, HEARTS AKILTER (fantasy/sci-fi romance) is a novella that will soon be released by The Wild Rose Press. It's a lighthearted futuristic romance, which takes place on my favorite world— Kifel Space Station.

Prior to writing novels, I wrote and sold sci-fi short stories to both hard copy and online magazines and anthologies. The short stories seemed to get longer and longer until I was writing novels. It was in those short stories that I first escaped to Kifel Space Station— and then beyond, to other worlds, for adventure and romance.

Is there a process you stick to, or do you just write as it hits you?

Ah, the Pantser or Plotter question. Well, I'm neither. On the list of 10 TYPES OF WRITERS(link: http://www.rimstoneconceptsllc.com/10-Types-of-Writers-PUB-0000.html) I am what's called a Foundation Writer. That is, I get a story dump— a scene, a character sketch, or a chapter— and in that dump is everything I need to figure out the story. How do I figure things out? I use a Project Bible, one I devised and which works for my novels as well as my short stories. Once I have all the "answers," and the likely outcome of the story is evident (but not written in stone), I begin writing and binge-write until the story is completely drafted.

What's the one thing you would do if you could be your character for a day?

If I could be Marlee (HEARTS AKILTER's protagonist-heroine), I would close and lock her shop door and start taking apart robots to see how they work and what's inside them. And, I will confess, I do like robots, cute little ones, and have used them in many of my stories.

Will there be more books in your series, or can you tell us about any previous books?

I don't have a series per se, but I do have a theme world– Kifel Space Station— which is the setting for HEARTS AKILTER. The preface is: They say there are a million stories to tell of those beings, human and aliens, who pass through the portals and labyrinths of Kifel Space Station. This is but one.

So, yes, there are more stories drafted. All I have to do is clean them up and submit them. That's the hard part, doing the self-editing and polishing.

Once HEARTS AKILTER's launch is done, my goal is to get back to the self-edits on a lighthearted, futuristic romance novel I want to submit. It's a galactic brew of thieves, political intrigue, family duty, government loyalties, and saving face— where notorious privateer Sarina "Dammit" Dannon and no-nonsense government agent Aaron Cantrall can only find love under lite speed.

When not writing, what can you be found doing?

Sewing. I find it so rewarding to have clothes that fit and which are distinct. I have been sewing since I was eight years old, and was a 4-H'er, then a 4-H leader, and now a Project Leader.

I have won numerous prizes and ribbons at the local fairs with my sewing projects, which have ranged from elegant and fancy aprons to finely detailed and tailored coats.

Before retiring from owning and showing Morgan Sport Horses, I made hunt seat, saddleseat, sidesaddle, driving, and western riding attire. I've even made my daughter's medieval costumes.

Currently I'm having a great time creating Erte (the Father of Art Deco) outfits for Darq, the avatar-heroine doll of my novel JEWELS OF THE SKY, and posting photos of them at the book's blog (link: https://jewelsofthesky.wordpress.com/)

My most recent sewing project was a tote bag to use at last month's writer's conference. I wanted a clear plastic pocket on the outside to display a large copy of HEARTS AKILTER's cover. I also needed pockets for pens, paper, business cards, personal items, etc. Of course, the tote is sized so a folder or two and my Android tablet can easily be carried and accessed. (There are a total of eleven pockets.)

The tote also has a handle-strap as well as a removable, leather shoulder strap. This tote will be entered in the local fair (next month).

One thing some people find odd is that I don't quilt. Okay, I might quilt a pocket or something small, but making a bed-sized quilt? No. Sorry. Quilts, and quilting that large a project, just do not appeal to me.

I love all that you've accomplished and that you're so crafty Catherine. Thanks for being with us today. Now, let's take a look at your book.

Hearts Akilter

Applicable genres: fantasy/sci-fi romance, romance, humor (lighthearted)

Length: Novella

Coming soon from The Wild Rose Press

Visit her website (http://www.catherineemclean.com/) to enter to win a $50 gift card as part of the book launch.

Love, vengeance, attempted murder, and a bomb...No reason to panic.

When a medical robot insists he's having a heart attack, Marlee Evans, a pragmatic maintenance technician, has every reason to panic. There's a bomb inside him.  Since Marlee can't risk the bomber discovering she's found the device, her only option is to kidnap Deacon Black, an unflappable bomb expert, and secretly convince him to disarm it.  Things go slightly awry when Deacon sets a trap for someone who is trying to kill him, and inadvertently captures Marlee instead.  Instantly intrigued by her refreshingly forthright and gutsy attitude, he's smitten.  Unfortunately for Deacon, Marlee recently hardened her heart and swore off men, especially handsome ones with boy-next-door grins.  But as Marlee and Deacon attempt to identify and prevent the bomber from detonating the device, they discover that love may be the most explosive force of all.


By Catherine E. McLean @ 2015

The bomb. Right. Dismantle the bomb. In this lift? No, that was insane. “Marlene, if the bomb goes off accidentally—”
“It’ll blow the station to kingdom come?”
He nodded.
     “Not to worry.”
She said that with such nonchalance that he found himself speechless. He cleared his throat. “Why not? Did you snatch the portable Bomb Disposal Unit, too?”
 “What’s better than a BDU?”
“Garbage incinerators.”
“What?” He glanced out into the darkness beyond the lift.
Giant machinery stood silhouetted and veiled in shadows. “Where are we?”
“Deck forty-three, Ring D zero three. Relax. Don’t panic.  They once accidentally incinerated a torpedo in number four, over yonder.”
She pointed to the left. “Nobody heard or felt it explode, and there wasn’t even a drail’s worth of damage done to the incinerator, or anything else.”
            “I don’t believe you.”
            “It happened three years ago. I was there, a deck above.
Never mind.”
Henry manipulated his finger appendage, grabbing and briefly tugging the shirt sleeve of Deacon’s good arm. “Marlee would never lie about anything so important.”
“Does she lie about unimportant things?” He instantly regretted his caustic remark.
“I do not know.” Henry spun sideways, facing Marlee. “Do you lie about unimportant things, Marlee?”
“I have been known to tell a white lie now and then to spare someone’s feelings, but on the whole—” She looked away from Henry.
As her blacker than black eyes met his gaze, Deacon felt pinned to the wall.

Available for Pre-Order Now- Delivered Aug.5, 2015 

The Wild Rose Press: http://bit.ly/1HDhwAT

 About Catherine E. McLean

Besides Catherine being a wife and mother, she has ridden and exhibited Morgan Sport Horses. She's an avid clothing and costume designer, an award-winning amateur photographer, a 4-H leader, and a Red Hatter who loves bling.

She lives on a farm nestled in the foothills of the Allegheny Mountains of Western Pennsylvania. In the quiet of the countryside, she writes fantasy, futuristic, and paranormal stories where a reader can escape to other worlds for adventure and romance.

Her short stories have appeared in hard-copy and online anthologies and magazines. Besides having two novels published, soon to be released is her lighthearted fantasy/sci-fi romance HEARTS AKILTER. Catherine also gives writing workshops, both online and in-person. A schedule is posted at http://www.writerscheatsheets.com/workshops.html

Catherine's website for writers is 
and she blogs at 


  1. Welcome to the blog Catherine. From your answers, I feel as if I know you already. That is an awesome blurb and excerpt. Very attention getting.

    1. Thanks, Angela! The blurb was probably the easiest one I've every written and it was also the one I used for my query letter.

  2. Lovely excerpt, Catherine. You have so much imagination! Best wishes with the novella and all future activity at the Kifel Space Station.

    1. Thank you, Angelina. I'm on a blog tour for the book and next month I'll be doing a post on Kifel Space Station as a setting, so if you're interested in reading that, let me know. (I don't have a date yet for it or the link.)

  3. Your book sounds interesting, Catherine! And I am a crafter, too, although I tend to do costumes and not much else these days. Good luck with your release!

    1. Happy to meet a fellow crafter and costumer. What kind of costumes do you create?

  4. I have to apologize for not going on line last night. I got wrapped up in the NOVA and then the Discovery channels specials on the Pluto mission. Nine and a half years in flight for one piano-sized module, making it all the way to little Pluto and sending back such awesome pictures. Wow. And kudos to the scientists and engineers, and the mission control people!