Interview with Mary Hughes

What are your five favorite books, and why?
Jim Butcher's Ghost story. No one can take conflict and not just ramp it up but totally explode it out of the ballpark like Butcher.

Elizabeth Peter's He Shall Thunder in the Sky. I love all the Amelia Peabody books for the smart, kick-ass archeologist's narrative, but this is the one that ties up her son Ramses' romance with beautiful doctor Nefret. Gotta love a romance that builds tension over several books.

Rex Stout's Triple Zeck. Again, I love all the Nero Wolfe stories (Archie Goodwin's narration is still smart and sharp decades later) but this set of three pits the famous detective against his arch nemesis.

J.R. Ward's Lover Eternal. The beauty of Rhage and Mary's love story sings.

Anything by Malcolm Gladwell. Non-fiction is great to stay informed and better oneself, but Gladwell shines in being informative and deeply thought-provoking in a thoroughly entertaining and engaging way.
What do you read for pleasure?
Mysteries, paranormal romance, humor, fantasy and science fiction. Above all there has to be some wit and charm to the characters. HEA a must. If I wanted real life I'd live it :)
What motivated you to become an indie author?
Edie Ramer. She made it look easy :D I'm grateful for Edie and the local indie author group including Leigh Morgan and Elle J Rossi. They're a priceless source of information and support.
Describe your desk
Black metal frame with faux oak planks, easy to move if I need to :) Top shelf holds works in progress and breakfast bars, bottom has past and future projects and backup media. Overhead shelf with pens, pencils, Post-Its, hand lotion and family pictures. Scented candle, writing netbook (which I carry with me) and banking/online computer are all a must. Rounded out with sturdy comfortable chair and cat on lap.
How has Smashwords contributed to your success?
With one upload my stories are available world-wide. You take the guesswork out of distributing. Thank you!
What do your fans mean to you?
I'm so incredibly grateful for the people who write and tell me how my stories have touched them, or lifted their cares for a while. It makes writing ultimately worth it for me. I'm also grateful for those who don't write for whatever reason but are out there, reading and loving the books. I feel the <3 :D Thank you!!
What is the greatest joy of writing for you?
Writing itself, for two reasons. First, however my day has gone, if I can pull out even a few words I'm in a better place.

Then, if those words take readers to a better place too, that's the true joy!
What are you working on next?
I have so many stories in the pipes right now! Indie books Twice Shy, Hot Chips and Sand, and Biting Love universe stories Murder at Chipmunk Lake and the Honeymoon Boxed Set.

Then there's Downbeat, Biting Love Book 7 scheduled for release March 4, 2014. This story of flutist Raquel "Rocky" Hrbek and Dragan Zajicek is one of my favorite projects, celebrating the people who've made my years of music special.
Who are your favorite authors?
Janet Evanovich, Rex Stout, Elizabeth Peters, Jim Butcher, Dame Dorothy Dunnett, Jeff Lindsey, David Eddings, Charles Stross, Christopher Farnsworth...that's just off the top of my head :)
When you're not writing, how do you spend your time?
I'm principal flute for our regional orchestra so flute practice. The lawn needs mowing in the summer and the driveway shoveling in the winter. Gardening is a new activity for my husband and me. We take walks too. Strangely, since we didn't have a television in our house for ten years, we love watching TV now, Bones, The Big Bang Theory, 30 Rock, Warehouse 13, Elementary, NCIS, Whose Line Is It Anyway, Numb3rs, Psych, too many to name them all :)
Published 2013-09-13.
Smashwords Interviews are created by the profiled author, publisher or reader.

Books by This Author

Hot Chips and Sand
Price: $0.99 USD. Words: 87,220. Language: English. Published: December 5, 2016 by 7th Octave Publishing. Categories: Fiction » Adventure » Action, Fiction » Romance » Contemporary
Cliff is a billionaire computer genius hiding his life as a spy. Skyler is competitive with a temper, a programmer whose genius is people. She's kidnapped; he rescues her, and she thinks she'll never see him again. Until he shows up at her company, wanting her help on a programming project. But is Cliff the spy working with her kidnappers?
Mind Mates
Price: $5.50 USD. Words: 95,570. Language: English. Published: August 23, 2016 by 7th Octave Publishing. Categories: Fiction » Romance » Paranormal, Fiction » Romance » Action/adventure
When a powerful wizard prince comes out of hiding to save his sister, he is forced to team with a pretty shifter—one with ugly, dangerous powers of her own. As vengeful enemies close in, a forbidden attraction flaming between them, the two race to find a mysterious key.
Cin Wikkid: April Fools For Love
Price: $2.99 USD. Words: 35,390. Language: English. Published: June 16, 2016 by 7th Octave Publishing. Categories: Fiction » Romance » New adult, Fiction » Humor & comedy » General
Cinderella hungers to escape Widow Wikkid's grinding thumb. Freedom’s one desperate class away, but Cin sucks at tax accounting. Scarred-but-sexy tutor Rafe ignites Cin’s mind—and enflames her body. Why’s he urging her to marry billionaire Gideon Prince? THE GLASS SLIPPER TEST Will Rafe’s final test be Cin’s final straw?
Biting Serendipity: April Fools For Love
Price: $2.99 USD. Words: 38,640. Language: English. Published: June 30, 2015 by 7th Octave Publishing. Categories: Fiction » Romance » Paranormal, Fiction » Humor & comedy » General
Sera hoists beer steins at her tavern job, where a Viking bouncer is bedsheets waiting to get sweaty. But Thor only scowls at her. Warning: A terribly lonely vampire, a conflicted schoolmarm with a caged wild side, a small town full of busybodies—and the best April Fools joke ever.
Biting Love Nibbles
Price: $4.99 USD. Words: 105,160. Language: English. Published: June 30, 2015 by 7th Octave Publishing. Categories: Fiction » Holiday » Humorous, Fiction » Mashups
Sparkling, sassy, sinfully sexy. Indulge your yen for action-packed vampire romance with these short bites. Biting Holiday Honeymoons (Biting Halloween/Biting Christmas), Oz Bites, Murder at Chipmunk Lake, and Biting Serendipity. Biting Love Short Bites 1-4 also available separately.
Masked Attraction
Price: $2.99 USD. Words: 38,480. Language: English. Published: February 23, 2015 by 7th Octave Publishing. Categories: Fiction » Romance » Paranormal, Fiction » Holiday » Halloween
The masks are coming off. Daniel Light loved Zoe Blackwood when he was a gangly dork. Now a powerful wizard prince, a masked ball gives Daniel a new chance to woo her. Coming between them is an ancient parchment with a deadly prophecy. Warning: A wolf shifter on the cusp of mate-or-else, a smokin' hot wizard who won't let anything stand in his way, and fun in closets.
Murder at Chipmunk Lake
Series: Biting Love Short Bites, Book 3. Price: $2.99 USD. Words: 43,850. Language: English. Published: July 30, 2014. Categories: Fiction » Romance » Paranormal, Fiction » Mystery & detective » Women Sleuths
Pregnant punk rocker Nixie has a stalker. Her vampire husband Julian whisks her to a north woods cabin, but the stalker is there, threatening her. Julian punches him out. Done. Except the stalker is found dead, and the trouble is only starting. Warning: Cranky pregnant lady trying not to swear, hubby appeasing her with food and creative sex, murder, mayhem and arguments over what to name the baby.
Biting Holiday Honeymoons
Series: Biting Love Short Bites. Price: Free! Words: 14,190. Language: English. Published: November 13, 2013 by 7th Octave Publishing. Categories: Fiction » Romance » Paranormal, Fiction » Anthologies » Short stories - single author
That special night with her master vampire is interrupted by Dracula and Santa Vamp. Warning: explicit language, action, and, since one bride is a cop and the other a punk rock musician, swearing. Biting Halloween originally published as Biting Dracula. Biting Christmas originally published as A Biting Christmas Special.
Twice Shy
Price: $2.99 USD. Words: 45,130. Language: English. Published: October 19, 2013. Categories: Fiction » Romance » Contemporary, Fiction » Humor & comedy » General
(5.00)
Can tripping over your own feet lead to falling…in love? Media superstar Zan is tired of high-gloss, meaningless dates. He just wants to meet a nice girl—like shy Vicky. He arranges a meet through her sister, his model ex-girlfriend Ronnie. Ronnie thinks he wants to get back together with her. Now Vicky has to overcome her shy nature, her sister, and her own feet to win Zan's love.
Black Diamond Jinn (A Hot SF/Fantasy Novella)
Price: $2.99 USD. Words: 43,570. Language: English. Published: May 15, 2012. Categories: Fiction » Fantasy » Paranormal, Fiction » Romance » Sci-fi
(4.00)
The Mayan Doom is real. Witch Amaia Jones has the spreadsheet to prove it. The world is ending tonight but her boss won't let her call a jinni to help. She turns to darkly handsome Rafe. Rafe turns out to be black diamond jinn, the deadliest of his kind. The price for his help is high but with hours to go, Amaia's alternatives are rapidly dwindling. Explicit sex, snark and happy-ever-after.
Oz Bites
Series: Biting Love Short Bites. Price: $1.00 USD. Words: 18,680. Language: English. Published: August 30, 2011. Categories: Fiction » Romance » General, Fiction » Romance » Paranormal
Vampires and sex and flamingos—oh my! Punk musician Nixie and her vampire husband Julian need to assemble a pit orchestra. But the gig's no-pay and when that secret comes out Nixie's musicians back out. Worse, whoever’s stealing secrets isn’t just stealing Nixie’s. Warning: Contains wild sex, explicit violence, swearing, and a frazzled punk heroine.