Author Diana Holquist is as entertaining as her books. According to her, she is a cat person, a horrible cook, hasn’t owned a television since 1999, owns only two pairs of earrings and dress shoes, and has a philosophy degree from Columbia University. Other titles include: Hungry For More, Sexiest Man Alive, and Make Me A Match. She resides in upstate New York with her family.
Thanks for being here, Diana. It’s a pleasure.
#1- Tell us a little about yourself outside of your writing career…
Thanks so much for having me!
Well, I’m still a terrible cook and a cat person, but I have to talk to my publisher to change my bio on their site. Amazing the difference three years makes. I now live in Philadelphia with my cats, son, daughter, and husband. I have seven pairs of earrings (yes, I just counted), three pairs of dress shoes (black, brown, and PINK), and have a television with over 200 stations. (Not that I ever watch it.) Getting the television was a huge fight in my house, and I lost it. The earrings and shoes seem to multiply on their own.
#2- (I’m laughing even as I ask this)… Your new book, HOW TO TAME A MODERN ROGUE is a contemporary romance about a woman’s grandmother who thinks she is living in a regency romance. How on Earth did you come up with this idea and be able to carry the humor throughout the story?
The idea came from Man of La Mancha. That’s the musical adapted from the book Don Quixote by Cervantes. In the musical, a crazy man, Don Quixote, believes he’s a knight-errant in a novel he’s become obsessed with. It’s such a beautiful conceit—that the crazy see things more sanely than everyone else. Also, that a person can become so obsessed with a book, that his life becomes the book. I absolutely HAD to adapt it to a romance novel. I took notes during the intermission. My family thought I was nuts.
But, in a romance novel, you can’t have the hero be crazy (even though I really, really wanted to). So instead, the grandmother thinks she’s living in a Regency romance novel.
Is it funny throughout? Oh, thank heavens for that! You never know when you’re writing what will work. I do think the story rings true because most of us have at least once in our lives been screw-ups and we’ve benefited from that one “crazy” person who still believed in us. It’s a story of second-chances and hope.
#3- As you know, I reviewed your title HOW TO TAME A MODERN ROGUE for Bookpleasures and loved it. But how do you handle the negative reviews and critiques you receive?
What can you do? I only write to please myself. I actually like that I elicit strong responses from people. Better to be loved and hated than to be ignored or forgotten. I always start a book thinking, I have to write THIS book NOW not how will I please the reviewers? It would be easy to write to what readers or reviewers expect, but it just doesn’t interest me.
#4- I may have mentioned this in my review, but this book would make a sweet and hilarious movie. Have you ever been approached by a screenwriter for your books and what’s your take on it?
Wouldn’t that be lovely? When Steven Spielberg calls, I’ll let you know.
#5- Assuming you get any time to read, what authors do you like to read, and were there any books that stand out from your childhood as favorites?
I read all the time. At least a book a week, sometimes more. I’m on a historical kick right now, Elizabeth Hoyt and Georgette Heyer. I adore what Kristan Higgins and Ellen Hartman are doing with funny, heartwarming contemporary novels. Susan Elizabeth Phillips is my all-time hero; I re-read her books all the time. I also read a lot of YA with my kids. Jerry Spinelli, I think, is one of the best authors writing today for any age. If I could write like Spinelli, I’d die happy. The man’s a genius.
Growing up, I read EVERYTHING, from Jane Austen to James Clavell to Shakespeare. I didn’t leave the house much. I still don’t. (See lack of shoes, earrings, above.)
#6- Are there any upcoming releases we would like to know about, and could you give us your web site so readers can check it out?
My next book, currently titled Contractual Obligation Number Five, will be out next spring. But the book I’m most excited about now is The Dulcet Duke, the book within-the-book from How to Tame a Modern Rogue. To get the story on that, go to:
My website is http://DianaHolquist.com
Please stop by! I’d love to meet you.
#7- This about concludes it. Thank you again for joining us. Is there anything else you would like to share?
Yes. Come and visit my site to enter the Happily Ever After contest to win a free copy of Sexiest Man Alive. It’s fun and free!
Thanks so much for having me here!