Thursday, March 18, 2010

Author Interview and Giveaway - Mary Margret Daughtridge

Please welcome Mary Margret Daughtridge, Author of SEALed with a Ring to My Reading Room - she is joining us today for an interview and is willing to answer any questions you have and will be checking in during the day.  So ask away.

1.   How did you celebrate when you received the first call that you would be published?
I have a wonderful friend who’s better at celebration than I am.  She hurriedly called several other friends who had “been in on” the ups and downs of finding a publisher. We met on the patio of a favorite restaurant, ate stuffed mushrooms and drank champagne.

2.   How did it feel to see all of your hard work come to fruition with the first book in your SEAL series, SEALed with a Kiss?
Wonderful. Shocking. Scary. Funny. Confusing. A sense of déjà vu. Such a pot full of emotions all stewed together for so long, it’s impossible to separate out the components.

3.   Has the thrill been the same with the release of the two other books in the series, including the newest one, SEALed with a Ring
It’s still a thrill to see my words in print, but the thrill changes. I always sit down and read the book as soon as I receive my author’s copies. The thrill that hasn’t changed is the moment I’m reading along and for a second, it isn’t my book, it’s just a book, and I think to myself, “Oh! This is good.”

4.   Without giving anything away - what is SEALed with a Ring about?
The heroine, JJ desperately needs some balance in her life—a fact her grandfather recognizes. He has tried enticing her to make her life more rounded without success. Since he blames himself for teaching her that work was the be-all end-all, he threatens to take away the only thing she cares about, the family business, if she doesn’t get married.

In many was Davy, a Navy SEAL medic is as consumed with his career as JJ, but he does have a hobby: sex. He’s so drop dead gorgeous getting girls is easy. A career he loves and all the sex he wants? Life is good.

Everybody knows with a marriage of convenience plot, the hero and heroine are going to get married. The question is what will it take for them to fall in love? Ms. I’m-Too-Busy-Being-Responsible fall in love with Mr. Live-For-Today? It was so not going to happen. :-)

5.   Do you get time to read? What are your favorite types of books to read?
I can’t not read. I’m addicted, and I’ll read anything.
Crystal: I know that feeling well.  And thanks to all the wonderful authors like you who provide me with great reading material.

6.   What is your favorite spot to read in?
I do most of my reading for pleasure in bed. I can’t go to sleep without reading for a few minutes.

7.   What is your favorite snack food?
I like celery. No, really. I do.
Crystal: Sure you do ;) No actually I understand - right now I love carrots, of course they are dipped in honey mustard dressing, but hey it's low-fat :)

8.   Do you have a schedule for writing each day or do you just do it when you can?
I write best early in the morning—like around five AM.

Crystal: Ouch - that is early - you know that time used to be my best time so I do understand.  Now I am a night person and I want to be a morning person again.

9.   I must tell you that the covers for your books are awesome.  I could stare at those abs all day.  Are you a leg, butt, hair, face, etc. woman?  (Sorry I had to ask because I just can't get past the amazing abs on the covers).
:-) The Sourcebooks art department does an awesome job, don’t they? Great abs are great, but buns are good too, as well as pecs, and biceps, and defined forearms, and the groove of the spine in a well-developed backs, and…I guess I’m more of a big-picture type.

10.  I also must say that I love that this book is set in NC.  I realize you live here, but I so enjoy reading books about my home state.  It was neat reading about Wilmington and knowing some of the places you mention (road names for example).  DH and I vacation down there some even though we live just 1.5 hours up the coast at the beach.  What led you to use our beautiful state as your setting for SEALed with a Ring?
I’m glad you enjoyed the feeling of familiarity. I’m a North Carolinian, born and bred in the eastern part of the state, so I’m really only writing what I know. I’ve vacationed on Topsail Island for years, and Wilmington is one of my most favorite places to visit.
Crystal: Have you visited the Atlantic Beach/Morehead City/Beaufort area?  Because that is where I am at.  I love it here.  I was just up your way two weeks ago to see my extended family who live in Mount Airy.

11.  JJ is such an interesting heroine, working in the car sales business and Davy is dreamy - just the ultimate sexy man (and he knows it yet not in an annoying way).  How did these characters come to you, were they just there and developed or did you slowly get to know them? 
I’m glad you liked them. My characters become so real to me and I love them so much, I often feel a little guilty for letting the world see their flaws—kind of like talking about a friend behind their back. My heroes often pop fully formed into my mind. Davy did. Because I couldn’t change him I worked really hard to help the reader see what a sweetie he is—in a drop-dead-gorgeous-and-he-knows-it, arrogant, jerk sort of way. :-)
As soon as I met him in SEALed with a Promise, I decided I would like to see him get his comeuppance, but then I saw his sweetness and the way he loves to take care of people, and I knew he had to have a woman who was strong enough to stand up to him, and one strong enough to protect him too. I know a lot of forceful women and it’s a kind of woman I like.

12.   Any book signings/conferences/public/blog appearances in the near future?
I’d love to schedule a book signing at the Barnes and Noble in Wilmington, NC. Wouldn’t that be cool? If I do, I’ll drop you a notice.

Crystal: Yes, please do let me know if you do that - I would love to come to a book signing for you - you know I've never been to one before (I know it's an awful shame).

13.  Do you have a new book in the works?
Lt. Garth Vale (sometimes called Darth Vader behind his back, but never to his face) whom you meet in SEALed with a Ring, is on a temporary assignment when he discovers a box in the back of a spy transport plane. The box has a baby in it.
Crystal: Now that sounds interesting, I definitely have to read that one.

14.  Anything else you would like to say?
Thanks for having me. Maybe your readers would like a turn at asking questions. I’ll be around all day to respond to their comments.
Crystal: Yes - everyone please do ask questions for Mary Margret. Ask a question and be entered in a giveaway for one of two copies of SEALed with a Ring by Mary Margret Daughtridge.  Giveaway open to US/Canada only, but asking questions is open to everyone (more information about the giveaway below).

She’s got it all…except the one thing she needs most
Smart, successful businesswoman JJ Caruthers has a year to land a husband or lose the empire she’s worked so hard to build. With time running out, romance is not an option, and a military husband who is always on the road begins to look like the perfect solution…

He’s a wounded hero with an agenda of his own
Even with the scars of battle, Navy SEAL medic Davy Graziano is gorgeous enough to land any woman he wants, and he’s never wanted to be tied down. Now Davy has ulterior motives for accepting JJ’s outrageous proposal of marriage, but he only has so long to figure out what JJ doesn’t want him to know…

Mary Margret Daughtridge has been a grade school teacher, speech therapist, family educator, biofeedback therapist, and Transpersonal Hypnotherapist. She is a member of Heart of Carolina Romance Writers, Romance Writers of America, and Romancing the Military Soul, and is a sought-after judge in writing contests. She resides in Greensboro, North Carolina. For more information, please visit

Thank you again to Mary Margret Daughtridge for allowing me to interview her today and thanks to Danielle Jackson at Sourcebooks for my ARC of SEALed with a Ring and coordinating this interview.


Ask Mary Margret a question - she will be popping in and out through the day to answer them, so ask away and gain an entry into the giveaway for one of two copies of SEALed with a Ring provided by Danielle Jackson at Sourcebooks.  Ask a question and leave your email for one entry.  Additional entries for tweeting about this giveaway, and being a follower.

Giveaway open to US/Canada only, but please if you are international, ask a question anyway.  Open through 3/24.  Questions asked on 3/18 will be answered but know that questions asked after Thursday the 18th may or may not be - Mary Margret is a busy woman and we need her to get cranking on her next book (and let her have a life too) :)

Review of SEALed with a Ring coming in the next few days.