Kate: Phew…things got busy there for a while (why did I have 4 kids??)

Michele: I think that’s wonderful.

Here are my questions:

1. Michele-what persuaded you to leave ‘old Blighty’ and cross the pond?
(anyone who needs a translation, leave me a comment)

I guess I was young and adventurous and wanted to travel. When I got here, I found life in North America suited me. It is a little more open to new ideas, it was easier to move up the ladder here. Also, it is so easy to go back and forth these days, I never felt cut off from my family and friends and I think that helped a great deal when I first arrived.

2. What do you think are the main differences between the romance market in the UK and the US?

My guess is probably the settings and category. I understand historicals and medical romances are very popular in the UK. The heartland America novels popular in the US may not be so well understood over there, although chick lit, one of the newer markets seems to have originated in the UK with Bridget Jones and been very popular here too. The world is definitely getting smaller. I think that is a good for lots of reasons.

3. Have you enjoyed the ATII experience?

As much as one can enjoy being in a competitive position and very much out in public view. Making it to round four was a wonderful achievement. I set out with the idea that I would like to get through the first vote without being cut.

What has surprised you most?

How interested and supportive everyone has been, family, friends, colleagues at work, and fellow writers. And the goodwill between the 11 competitors has been wonderful. What a great bunch of women writers. I think we will probably stay in touch long after the contest is over.

4. How do you plan to capitalize on the exposure ATII has given you?

My agent, Sott Eagen has been sending out an earlier novel to editors and keeping them in touch with the progress of the contest. I have made a great many contacts with people who have expressed interest in reading my first book, Pistols at Dawn, which will be published in June 2006, so I hope it will help me build some readership that I otherwise would not have reached. Being an ATII finalist will catch the attention of editors at least for a while.

5. Do you plan on sticking with historicals or have you other possibilites?

I have always loved reading historicals, and I am comfortable with the Regency era, though I do have a medieval with paranormal elements started. I also like fantasy. So I guess world building is my thing. I would like to become recognized for historicals.

6. What British food do you most miss?

I’m a romance writer. English chocolate, what else?
(a woman after my own heart-check Kate’s blog for numerous references to chocolate, especially Cadburys and Galaxy!)

Thanks Michele!

Michele Ann Young
“No Regrets” American Title II Contest Finalist
“Pistols at Dawn” Five Star Expressions June 2006