Sunday, November 12, 2006

Sunday Spotlight on Trish Wylie

Our spotlight is being shone this week on our very own Trish Wylie, one of the founding Pink Heart Society authors! Trish is the only Irish Author writing Irish set stories for Harlequin Mills & Boon's Romance and Modern Extra lines and since her first book went onto the shelves in April 2003, it has gone on to win the Romantic Times Reviewers Choice Award for Best First Series Romance when it hit Stateside in 2005!


I knew at eighteen I would write for Mills & Boon. Would tell anyone that would listen that that's what I would do. Because I loved them. My Mum was a subscriber to the reader service and every month I would wait with bated breath for those magical little books to arrive so that I could get to them first and look for my favourite authors. I can do this I thought, I'm meant to do this...It was my dream. Why is it sometimes so darn easy to let ourselves be dragged down by self doubt and those people who tell us we should dream less and get out there and get on with 'real' life? That's what happened to me.

Alright, so at eighteen I maybe was a tad lacking in the whole falling in love experience and I'd never suffered a broken heart - so maybe it was better that I gained a little life experience first. But even so. It took fifteen years for me to write again. And when I did, I went back to a story I had started at eighteen. Only this time I sent it away. And they asked for the full. And it sold. Who says you should stop listening to your inner voice and not believe in dreams coming true, huh???


Where do you get the inspiration for your books from?

I'm a self confessed daydreamer, always have been. The end of a film is never the end of a film for me. Same with books or TV Shows or the occassional Music Video. Sometimes the words of a song will do it or a random thing in a magazine or a newspaper or people I see in the street. I take what happened, maybe change the bits I didn't like, and I form a whole new story round it. I even play out the heroines role from time to time - speak her words aloud when I'm alone. It actually becomes very real to me. Maybe I'm a closet actress at heart...

So for me it doesn't take much, but it nearly always starts with snippets of things and over a few daydreams they gradually piece together and become a story. It's why I'll always take a break between books to live with the idea for a while and also a reason why from time to time I look like I'm off on a nice little planet all of my own! So if you're ever talking to me and I look like I'm not listening to you - it's cos I'm giving birth to a new idea...

What makes you mad?

This blog is not long enough for my list. I can be quite irritated by the smallest of things and then remarkably understanding about things that make other people crazy. Growing up where I did at the time I did I learnt to hate intolerance and small minded people. I hate anyone anywhere who is cruel to animals - karma people - karma!!! I hate people who never park their car within the allocated white lines so the one space left in the car park isn't quite wide enough. I can't walk past a crooked picture without straightening it... and supermarkets that don't regularly check the dates on things make me gag. Literally.

What’s the most romantic thing that has ever happened to you?

I'm a single gal. Suffice to say if the most romantic thing that ever happened to me happened then I'd be in love with the guy and wouldn't be single. I remain optimistic - but not as pressured as I felt a few years ago to settle down. I like my life. If something beautifully romantic happens then I'll come tell you all. Promise. If it doesn't then fine - I get to fall in love head over heels with gorgeous men inside 50-60,000 words four or five times a year... Not many single gals can make that claim.

What in a hero makes you drool?

A sense of right and of honour. Confidence but not too much arrogance. An adventurous spirit, an ability to stand tall when times are tough, to fight for what he believes in, an ability to think outside the box. Most definitely a wicked sense of humour. Oh, and for the record I'm an eyes gal. Yes indeed-y. Though tall, dark and handsome helps... Mmm... did that sound too much like a shopping list??? If it helps I write what I'd like... You have my email addy if you can identify any of my imaginary heros in real life... Particularly Ryan in The Bridal Bet or Rory in Breathless!

If you weren’t a writer what would you be?

This is a toughie. Cos my CV would already need an HGV to get it to an interview. I've done everything from make pizzas to PR work for a recording company with some music tour co-ordinating, retail management, professional show grooming and teaching small children to sit on ponies along the way...

If I got to pick one out of the sky then I'd say I'd love to be a travel guide or one of those people who does travel reviews for websites... Though when I was in school I did want to be an Art Therapist... I can be a tad eclectic...

What do you do to relax and wind down?

I go play horses. I can spend hours grooming or cleaning stables or riding out along country lanes or even just standing watching them over the stable door or in a field. I love the outdoors. A walk on the beach, a spot of windsurfing (which i suck at), sailing, even just taking a long drive in the wilds of somewhere new...

But I'm just as likely to go spend time with friends when I come out of the cave - to go to the cinema or out to a club or a concert or just for a meal. Or curl up with a DVD or a good book! The main thing is that it's down time. Especially after this year when I have pushed myself so hard, I have learnt the importance of just going and doing something fun for the sake of fun... Otherwise there's a real danger of my writing feeling like actual work...

How do you get out of a writing rut?

I grit my teeth and get on with it! Yes - fraid so. Even if what I write needs edited to hell and back because it's pants at least I have something there to edit. An online chat with fellow authors can work wonders for those lightbulb moments too - just chatting about it to someone and telling them whats happening can really make you think. Oh, and I find a good Cabernet helps in times of extreme crisis.

If you could live anywhere in the world where would it be?

Well I love Ireland, it's in my blood so I think it'll always be home to me. But a little holiday home here and there would help with my itchy feet problems. I'm not famous for staying put. An apartment in New York for when I feel like some shows and a bustling crowd - a nice little villa somewhere warm on an island in the Med to help with any of that light deficiency thing we get prone to in winter - but a round the world ticket and a large suitcase on wheels would do...

Who would you most like to give a hug to for a fabulous book you have read?

Oooh - I have to pick one??? Dunno if I can do that! Probably Douglas Adams for making me rediscover my imagination in my teens and Terry Pratchett for making me laugh out loud and Patricia Cornwell for making me sit up all night reading instead of sleeping...

What music do you listen to when writing?

I tend to have albums I'll listen to over and over for a particular book. Il Divo for sheer romanticism, Coldplay for angst, Duncan James for that gorgeous romantic happy ending and for making me get up and dance my way out of sleepiness in the middle of a deadline. Riverdance and Adiemus for a nice feeling of Irish wistfulness. But I'll listen to mostly soft rock and Classical when writing cos the loud stuff I clean house to would be too distracting...

Tell us a secret nobody knows about you?

I *used to* have a secret crush on the actor Nathan Fillion. But *someone* outted me earlier this year online. So I'm a what-you-see kinda gal again.

What was your most embarrassing moment?

Oh and where to begin. I think an early one would have to be on one of my first days in High School, waiting for morning assembly to start. A nice girl next to me leaned over and started talking. Then she asked me what I had for my first period. I said Latin and went on *at length* about how much I disliked the teacher. And then asked her did she know her... 'She's my Mum' was the answer...

What have you had to celebrate in the last year?

2006 has been busy busy busy. It's my first year full time as a writer. I won my first big award from Romantic Times in April. I sold to Modern Extra in March odds. I had one of my Romance titles do *extremely* well in the US, I sold five books since going full time and am working on a sixth... and OF COURSE I had the honor and priviledge of seeing what started as a rant on my own Blog blossom with the help of my good friends Ally, Natasha and Nic to become The Pink Heart Society... Yep. It's been busy... But hey, it kept me out of mischief...

What’s beside your computer when you’re writing?

Coffee and/or wine glass depending on the level of desperation. Sleeping cats who when they wake up stomp on the keyboard to be fed. Remote controls for TV & DVD & Stereo for odd break I allow myself. Mobile to text neices to make sure ponies were fed. MP4 player to back everything up cos I'm paranoid & to play music tracks through earphones when I need to shut out the world. Pics of hero and heroine and synopsis so I remember what I'm doing. Fruit and/or chocolate - depending on the level of desperation...

If you could kiss anyone in the world who would it be?

*Rubs hands with glee* - cos as the only single gal here I can answer this one without fear of marital dispute... When I was younger I had a MASSIVE crush on Richard Dean Anderson as MacGuyver and Harrison Ford as Han Solo, then it was Kyle Chandler in Early Edition and as we all know I wouldn't kick Nathan Fillion from Serenity out of the house... Joe Flanigan from Atlantis maybe... Jensen Ackles, cos, I mean, *those lips*... oh this could be SUCH a long list really... And Natasha can just shush on any we have discussed privately online while drinking wine at deadline time...

What are you working on now?

What is rapidly turning into The Pineapple Mk II... It's a linked story to my second Modern Extra Breathless! - which is due out in February (and was, in my opinion my best work to date). This one follows Rory's younger brother Connor from Dublin, where Breathless! was set, to Galway, where Connor is dealing with finding out about a Father he has never known, a fortune he doesn't want and is selling the building out from underneath my heroine, Shannon, who loved him as a teenager and has carried a secret from him for seven years... It's proving *a difficult one to write* but then I guess I was due one after Breathless! and Bride Of The Emerald Isle both flew off my fingertips... sigh... And is why I've been invisible online for what feels like years now. So all positive vibes gratefully received at this point...

Trish's latest Romance is PROJECT: PARENTHOOD and is out now on the shelves in the US & Canada and direct in the UK & Ireland!

And White-Hot! is her first Sexy Sensation release in Australia and is available online at the Australian Harlequin site now!

For more info on her current releases you can visit her blog or her Website!


  1. I've been 'shushed'! Let's just say that Trish will never run out of candidates for 'Male on Monday'!! LOL

  2. No shushing! I was enjoying that list mightily.

    And yes I am the *one* who unknowingly outed Trish's luuuurve for one Nathan Fillion when I deigned to steal him as hero inspiration for my tenth book. Seriously, I don't know why she's still speaking to me after saying all that out loud!

    Trish, sending you every good vibe that Connor turns out as glorious as all your other heroes!


  3. Trish,

    Thanks for letting us get to know you via the blog.

    I was particularly enthusiastic about your views on heroes. I'm with you there - definitely eyes! And a sense of honour - oh, yes.

    Good luck with the current story. I hope it's NOT a pineapple.


  4. Trish, this book your working on isn't The Pineapple Mk II, remember? It's otherwise known as *a tough one to write*

    Loads of good vibes winging their way across to you...

    Sue :-)

    P.S. you are the only person I know of who also loved Early Edition! Everybody else looks at me as though they think I made this series up!!

  5. I LOVED Early Edition!! What a fabulous show!! I watched every episode!! No wonder I really like your books, we like all the same men!! How very cool!!! I'm all set for Season 3 of Stargate Atlantis next Thursday!!

  6. Great post, Trish. And a kindred spirit in many spheres including horses and music.

    As for men, you aren't the only single here, and I have just as long a list of wish-kissers!!! And a big file to keep Male on Monday going for a year!!

    Hope your characters can be bashed into submission and the rest of the book is easier to write. Good luck, hope you are soon out of the cave.

    Thanks for some truly smashing reads - and for the Pink Heart Society.


  7. Natasha just you continue shushing. How am I supposed to ever get secret fantasy men to love me if I get labelled as a stalker first????

    Ally - you were forgiven long ago babes! Though it took me a lot longer to get over The Captain. If he just wasn't such a darned nice guy in real life too... sigh...

    Annie! A kindred spirit! I can feel it already... And they can be as dangerous as surly or arrogant on the page and always be redeemd witht hat sense of honor and whats right and wrong, can't they? Gotta love this job!!!

    LOL Sue! Oh it existed alright! And I even caught a brief glimpse of our darling on Greys Anatomy this week too. When those lift doors opened and he walked out I nearly fell off the chair!!! Like fine wine I swear that man gets better with age....

    Cindy I only hope you continue to love those heros of mine... Joe may need a book soon methinks. In fact, having looked at that list of men of mine they all have characteristics in common don't they? All dark haired... all tall... all with a really sarcastic sense of humour on screen... Mmmm... Maybe I have a *type* after all... And apparently I write them that way more than I had realized!

    Hey Mags!!!!! Fellow singlie! I may have turned the crner with this book - but be sure not to tell anyone in case I jinx myself! And I CANT WAIT to get out of the cave I tell ya! I have PHS stuff up my sleeve... bwaha-ha-ha (evil laughter...)

    Now. Where did I set my muse down...

  8. I'm still shushing! But it hurts ....

  9. Natasha don't make me come over there...

  10. I loved Early Edition! My dad still has episodes of it on tape and it comes on tv occassionally and I love to watch it still.

    Kyle Chandler is now on a show called "Friday Night Lights" here in the states...he plays a high school football (American Football) coach. I get to see him each week.

  11. So glad you have turned the corner Trish. Even I feel relieved to hear that!

    And wasn't Kyle Chandler just perfect on Greys Anatomny? I'd never actually seen him in anything before. That voice, those eyes. Mmmmm....


  12. Hey Trish! Sorry Im late but its great to see you've popped out of your cave for a bit :) Good luck with the writing. Im still hunting down Project Parenthood... my Asda and newsagents seem to be carryin last months still.

    Oh, and it was indeed a wonderful suprise to see Kyle Chandler come out of that lift. We get to see him again next Thursday, right? :p

  13. That cover for 'Project Parenthood' has to be the cutest HMB have ever had!