My Monday Guest, Michelle McLoughney, bestselling author of contemporary romance.

I’m absolutely delighted to welcome the lovely Michelle McLoughney to my blog today.

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Michelle and I met via Tracy Smith Comerford, who is Michelle’s PA. Author of the Amazon bestselling saga, The O’Malleys, Michelle lives in County Clare, Ireland, where the novels are set.

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Michelle began writing at a young age and won her first national poetry competition at 17. She has been widely published throughout Ireland and internationally.

It’s fab to have you here, Michelle. Tell us, how would you describe yourself as a colour?

I would be bright orange. I consider myself a naturally happy person. I find it easy to laugh and have fun. There are darker sides to my personality but I have the ability to rationalise through dark times. I’m endlessly optimistic, sometimes annoyingly so.

Ha! Optimism is good. What kind of music do you listen to? Do you have an all-time favourite song?

I tend to veer toward the alternative when it comes to music. I’m a huge fan of The Smiths, The Cure, Joy Division, Patti Smith and Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds. My favourite song is Leonard Cohen’s Famous Blue Raincoat. I love music that can draw emotion from me and hold me captive.

I love Leonard Cohen and that’s a beautiful song. Are you a morning person or a burner of midnight oil?

I’m naturally a morning person, I wake up in a good mood most days at 6am for work. I write in the evening during the week and in morning time at the weekend. I’m most productive in the morning.

So, when did you start writing?

As a young teen, in an effort to cope with the emotional turmoil I felt surrounding my adoption. God-awful angst-ridden stuff. When I was seventeen, I won a national poetry competition in Ireland and realised that I may just be good at something. Since then, I have written at various times in my life. After completing a creative writing course a few years ago, I challenged myself to publish a full novel by the time I turned 40 and succeeded. I’m happily publishing my fourth in a few weeks. I write because I want to write. It’s as simple or as complex as that.

Me too. Where do you get your ideas from, Michelle?

My ideas come out from a phrase I’ve overheard, or an idea that comes into my head as a half formed thing and manifests over time. I like situations that throw people together in unusual circumstances.

How did you come to write your genre?

I read a load of nonfiction, mainly books on history, art or feminism. To unwind I like to read romance, often Mills and Boon, always conflict and always a happily ever after. I write what I like to read, easy reading, warm, fuzzy and sometimes cheesy romantic encounters.

Sounds perfect for unwinding. What’s your favourite part of writing?

My favourite part of writing is the initial idea. I get great pleasure in running the story roughly in my head. I love finding new ideas in everyday things, random conversations, and wondering how it would play out in real life. I also love the meet-cute. How the couple meet is hugely important to me. That initial few minutes of interaction when they feel things they haven’t felt before. That first flush of excitement when a potential new lover comes into the equation.

Ah, the tingle moment! How do you handle writer’s block?

I panic, overeat and fall into a complete slump. I tend to procrastinate until the last minute and cram write. The same way I handled exams in school. I was a last minute crammer.

Snap! Do you write longhand first, or does it go straight onto the computer?

Both. I scribble during the day in work, when time allows. I find longhand great for writing down as many ideas as possible. They only drawback is my handwriting is appalling.

What are you working on now? Would you like to share anything about it?

I’m currently working on a new series called, The Gods of Wrath Security Agency. It’s a series of seven books set in Boston, following a team of Navy SEALs who have become civilians and take over the workings of an agency. Each is a stand-alone, although better read in order as a series. All are contemporary romance with a HEA and involve sexy Alphas and the women who tame them.

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They sound great. Tell us about the first book in the series! 

Navy SEAL will be released on December 1st. Odin Byrne believes in two things, the SEAL code of honour and the ability of his Team. When he loses one of his brothers-in-arms, he loses a part of himself. Starting afresh with his Team and back home in Boston, Odin has only one focus, his uncle Declan’s security and detective agency, ‘The Gods of Wrath.’ A new team member is the last thing Odin wants, especially an ex-con who is hot as hell and mouthy to boot. Fighting for control of his agency, his heart, and his damn hormones, isn’t easy. When a new case threatens those closest to him, Odin must work with his adversary to bring a murderer to justice. Simple, apart from the memory of his lips on hers, and that one hot night. Jasmine McCarthy is starting a new life in Boston. After three years in an Irish prison for a crime committed by her ex-husband, she craves a new start, a new chance. When her friend Declan Byrne gifts her a part of his agency, Jasmine see it as her duty to join the team and follow his wishes, regardless of the opinion of her formidable new boss, Odin Byrne. The pig-head arrogant Ex-SEAL would be a lot easier to ignore, if she hadn’t already had a taste. Jasmine and Odin want nothing more than to stay the hell away from each other, if only chemistry and fate would play ball…

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Wow, Michelle. I can’t wait to read it. Readers, you can follow Michelle on Twitter @michellesinhell. She’s is very active on her Facebook Page and you can visit her website.