Hey Party People! 😁
It’s been a LONG time since I updated this blog. A WHOLE DARN YEAR TO BE EXACT. Yiiiiiiiiiiiiiikes. There will be an extended blog post coming up within the next few weeks updating you all on what’s been going on with me and why I’ve been absent with posting. In the meantime, allow me to get back on track by introducing you to a fabulous lady (emphasis on FAB).
If you don’t know Olivia Dade, you’re missing out on pure unadulterated joy. Don’t believe me? Keep reading!
What is the biggest culture shock you’ve experienced since moving to Sweden?
I could expound all day on the Swedish love for pastries (vast and delicious) and tendency to put béarnaise sauce on pizza (troubling, very troubling), but in all seriousness: The realization that what I once considered my strengths are now my weaknesses has been hard. In the U.S., I handled most paperwork and logistical issues for our family, and I literally make my living from my love and knowledge of English. In Sweden, I don’t know how things are supposed to work, and not feeling comfortable with the language is a real barrier. Please don’t misunderstand: My ability to move here was and is a privilege, and I love so much about Sweden. But the adjustment is hard sometimes. Even if I avoid béarnaise-tastic pizzas. Which I do, commitedly. ::shudders::
What’s your favorite musical instrument, and why?
Electric guitar! In key ways, I’m still a child of the ’80s, rocking out to a guitar solo as my bangs feather majestically in the wind.
Would you rather only be able to have sex in a room full of bugs or no sex at all ever?
My plan: befriend the bugs, make them all little blindfolds and/or a hangout spot in a corner with a tiny flat-screen TV, thus keeping them otherwise occupied during Olivia’s Bug-Free Intimate Moments.
What’s the worst thing your parents caught you doing as a kid?
For a brief time, I made the most embarrassing, dad-joke-esque prank calls of all time. There were inquiries as to whether someone’s refrigerator was running (“you should go and catch it!”), and, of course, jokes better suited for elderly Victorians than a seven-year-old: “Do you have Prince Albert in a can? Then you’d better let him out!”
Yeah. I was definitely a super-cool kid, as you can see.
Waffles, pancakes, or French Toast? *I want you to know I judge how people answer this, Olivia!*
Ask Mia Sosa about my apple-sour cream pancakes! They are my crowning achievement in the breakfast food arts!
How long does it usually take you to write a novel?
If I can immerse myself in the story, I can write a novella in several weeks and a full-length novel in a couple of months. If I can’t immerse myself in the story…well…
::sobs quietly:: ::grows old::
In one word, sum up Romancelandia.
For me: transformative.
If you could ask your favorite author (dead or alive) three questions about their writing, writing process, or books, what would they be?
I love Joanna Bourne’s historical romances. LOVE. I think she’s the master of immersing readers in her characters’ points of view. I was lucky enough to see her speak about the topic several years ago, and she also has lots of useful writing information on her website, so if I saw her in person once more, I’d probably ask the following questions:
1. Do you agree that your amount of talent simply isn’t fair to other authors?
2. Is there any scientific and/or medical way to transfer some of that talent to me?
3. Why not, dammit?
If you had a signature dance move, what would you call it?
The Awkward-but-Enthusiastic Flail.™
Finish this sentence: The secret to a happy marriage is ______.
👀 *LOL, the emoji is a Harper addition, I couldn’t help myself*
Okay, my real answer: emotional generosity on both sides and admiration for one another. The ability to laugh together, even after many years and on a hard, hard day, is a definite plus too. (Mr. D makes me laugh all the time. Even on purpose, usually!)
While I was growing up, my mother kept a stack of books hidden in her closet. She told me I couldn’t read them. So, naturally, whenever she left me alone for any length of time, I took them out and flipped through them. Those books raised quite a few questions in my prepubescent brain. Namely: 1) Why were there so many pirates? 2) Where did all the throbbing come from? 3) What was a “manhood”? 4) And why did the hero and heroine seem overcome by images of waves and fireworks every few pages, especially after an episode of mysterious throbbing in the hero’s manhood?
Thirty or so years later, I have a few answers. 1) Because my mom apparently fancied pirates at that time. Now she hoards romances involving cowboys and babies. If a book cover features a shirtless man in a Stetson cradling an infant, her ovaries basically explode and her credit card emerges. 2) His manhood. Also, her womanhood. 3) It’s his “hard length,” sometimes compared in terms of rigidity to iron. 4) Because explaining how an orgasm feels can prove difficult. Or maybe the couples all had sex on New Year’s Eve at Cancun.
During those thirty years, I accomplished a few things. I graduated from Wake Forest University and earned my M.A. in American History from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. I worked at a variety of jobs that required me to bury my bawdiness and potty mouth under a demure exterior: costumed interpreter at Colonial Williamsburg, high school teacher, and librarian. But I always, always read romances. Funny, filthy, sweet—it didn’t matter. I loved them all.
Now I’m writing my own romances with the encouragement of my husband and daughter. I have my own stack of books in my closet that I’d rather my daughter not read, at least not for a few years. I can swear whenever I want, except around said daughter. And I get to spend all day writing about love and iron-hard lengths.
So thank you, Mom, for perving so hard on pirates during my childhood. I owe you.
Activate your one-click finger and grab yourself a copy of Olivia’s latest release Tiny House, Big Love!