Spotlight, Author Interview & Giveaway : Serena by Claudy Conn (HR)

Book Blurb & Info

Witty and refreshingly candid, lovely Serena has been capturing hearts young and old alike. Her guardian uncle worries, though, that at twenty-three she will soon become a spinster. He wants a better life for her than that, but she doesn’t want to make a match without her heart being in it.

And none of the men courting her have touched her heart—not Warren, the old friend who woos her even as he eyes other women; certainly not Eustace, the minister concerned more with appearances than compassion; not even Freddy, perhaps the most ardent of her suitors but at nineteen still a puppy.

Then Freddy’s uncle, the handsome Lord Pendleton, arrives to extract his nephew from the woman he expects Serena to be—one interested only in wealth and a title. When he refuses to believe that, far from trying to ensnare Freddy, she has been urging him to return to Oxford, her ire gets the better of her. She decides to let his lordship stew in his own juices. And when it becomes clear Lord Arrogant’s plan is to get her to change her course from Freddy to himself, feisty Serena sets her own course.

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Hi Claudy *waves like a loon*,

Thank you so much for sitting down with Toot's for an interview. As you know, two of Toot’s girls are on you’re street team, so this blog has nothing but mad love for you!

If you don't mind, we have some questions for you about your new book, Serena and your process for our budding authors as well as fans.

So first off, Serena Questions.......

In your own words, what is Serena about?

Wait—this loon is waving back. Serena is a light-hearted but 18+ only regency romance. The Regency era is about a time when the Mad King George had to step back and allow his wild son to take his place, thus—the Regency. It was a time of hedonism, a time of Bonaparte, wild balls and an aristocracy breaking out of its mold. That is the backdrop for Serena’s story.

What happens when a woman won’t marry for anything less than love? She is a beauty, but will soon be called a spinster. Hanging on her every word is a young man, only nineteen, who should be back at Oxford. His mother sends her brother, Lord Pendleton to rescue him from the clutches of an older woman, and thus it begins. Added into the mix is dark doings and stolen gold.

How did you come up with the title of the book and can you tell us its significance?

Well, that’s easy. It is all about Serena’s world.

Is Serena a standalone book or will it be part of a series?

Yes, stand alone as are all my regency romances thus far.

What genre would you say Serena is and what sets your book apart for fans of the genre?

Regency stories are usually ‘sweet’ with little more than kissing going on. I never thought that was realistic. I have read the private letters of Lord Byron (in love with his half sister, Augusta) and others when visiting Newstead Abbey and taken behind the scenes. I came away with a different outlook than Jane Austin, who you will remember, referred to one of the heroine’s sisters in “Pride” as running away with a man without the benefit of marriage. Yup, they fooled around, because people are people. So if you like a ‘staid and sweet’, this is not for you, as I do have explicit love scenes in my regency books.

What was your favorite scene to write for either your hero or heroine in Serena?

I love the scene with Billy.

What was the hardest scene to write?

Their love scene and what follows.

What's your favorite line or quote from this book?

He answered her as though reading her mind, “If I could send the outriders to perdition, I would, for a chance to kiss those luscious lips of yours.”

“And what should I say to such boldness?” she attempted to tease, but her voice was breathless and she knew inviting.

“Yes, you would say yes…”


Do you recall how your interest in writing originated and what made you decide to pursue it as a career?

I couldn’t help but write. So many stories just played in my mind. As far as interest goes, I started reading Nancy Drew and any other fiction I could get my hands on when I was less than ten.

What inspires you to put the pen to paper or fingers to the keyboard?

A story pops into my head. A heroine tells me her story and I have to get it on paper.

What are some of the elements in/of your writing process?

For every author it is different, so different and for every book the same applies. I get an idea and make a bible. Who my people are, what they want, where they are and where they want to go and what drives them. Then the story and they take on a life apart from me, and I follow.

Are you a Plotter or a Panster?

Plotting is an all important avenue for me. I theme comes to mind and then it must be told so that the reader can follow and enjoy. Plotter.

Have you released anything under a different pen name, and if so, is there any difference between them?

In the past, I wrote for Random House, Zebra, and Doubleday under the name of Claudette Williams, and Melanie Davis. I discarded those names when I went Indie. LOVE INDIE.

What's next for you?

Keep on trucking. Love to write and my busy fingers just won’t quit.

Is there anything you’d like to add or say to your fans?

As most authors do, I love my fans. I read constructive negative reviews (and try not to cry) to see how I can improve their reading pleasure in my books.

Personal questions......

Now I know this is like asking you to choose between your own children, but out of all your amazing characters, who is your favorite and why?

I adore Prince Breslyn. He is my favorite. My very next favorite is the Dark Prince, Graely. My favorite heroine is Frankie, hands down. My second is Jazmine Decker, and close is Lady X.

Are there any of your stories or characters that hold a special place in your heart?

Spellbound-Legend, because it was my first Indie book and my first paranormal. I loved writing this book and the Legend series that came out of it.

Lastly, let's steal an idea from the magazines.....What 5 things do fans not know about you and 5 they don't know about the book?

Wow, 5 is quite a bit as I don’t have too many secrets. I guess they might not realize I am totally shy. I can not give a speech and have declined doing so at many events. I can’t do it. My knees crumble. So, shy is the top of the list. I am a true Capricorn. I have only been lucky enough to have one child, and she has been the joy of our lives. That isn’t five, but I think I am, excuse the pun, an open book.

Ah, five things about the book. I will answer this by saying, in my opinion, a light-hearted romp through an era when Lord Byron, Keats, Shelley, Wellington and Bonaparte made history is an exciting place to visit. So, come on in and be entertained.

THANK YOU, THANK YOU, THANK YOU for taking time to answer some questions. Congratulations on the new book and we can't wait for everyone to read it!

Author Info

Putting pen to paper came easy. I needed to write--I loved to write, thus, writing was a given. Going through the process of creating a story—putting it together into a first novel and then presenting it to the world—quite another thing. Just out of school and painfully shy (and I really still am) knocking on doors and asking someone to read my book was (for me) a death defying feat. 

I loved English—Irish--Scottish history and had traveled just enough to know the ‘look and feel’ of their beautiful countries. Hence, my regencies such as “Spring Gambit”, Sunday’s Child, and “Myriah” were born. Out of my regencies came my larger and sexier historical romances, such as “Cassandra”, “Blades of Passion”, and “Fire & Desire”, most of which were published by Fawcett. Many of my other titles can be checked out when you go to the links listed below.

However, my daughter lectured me and said that I should write about myself like I write my stories—so here goes…

While I have a fanciful imagination, I am a Capricorn—‘sure and steady’, and the obvious conflict leaves me jumbled. I have a computer, yes (invaluable), but I still jot down ideas on a scrap piece of paper, or a napkin in a restaurant. My imagination follows me wherever we go and sees so much more than meets the eye, and very often my husband will ask, ‘where are you now, baby?’

My dad was the one who clicked into my brain early on, and opened my mind to a world where a girl/woman could be so much more than ‘pretty in pink’. He told me to soar, and soaring for me, was writing.

We love horses and riding and when we migrated from New York to North Carolina we brought our barn with us—and yes, I’d rather muck out a stall than clean a house! My Irish, blue-eyed husband had to have a wolf and so we brought in our little hybrid wolf pup to our home. She is ¾ wolf/ ¼ German shepherd named Cherokee. Her 3 yr. old son (Rocky) is huge and eats everything and anything he can find and weighs more than 170 pounds!

Ireland and Scotland gave us the Fae and the Druids. In Ireland you can still visit the ‘Faery Mounds’. Think of the possibilities. I have and I’d love for you to join me as I explore them. So then, come with me and let’s see where we can go…


Claudy has generously offered up 2 ebook copies of Serena
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  1. What a great interview!! Love all Claudy Conn books! I am currently reading Serena and can't put it down!

  2. I love Claudy's books!! Thanks for a great interview!!

    As for what Toot's can do to be better.... I can't think of a single thing. :-)

  3. Terrific interview and I have read all of Claudy's books including Serena, which is terrific by the way!!

  4. Rosemary what a great interview. I have learned things I did not know. Thank you for having one of my favorite authors here . . This is a great blog