Saddle up for a ride on the range with Oklahoma author Callie Hutton!
Hi Callie, and welcome. Please tell us your latest news!
I recently signed a contract with Soul Mate Publishing for my third book in the Oklahoma Lovers series (Michael’s Story).
Do you plan all your characters out before you start a story or do they develop as you write?
I develop my characters as I write. I know (vaguely) what I want the story to be about, but as for how each character is, that comes to me while I’m writing. Sometimes they surprise me.
How much research do you do for your books? Have you found any cool tidbits in your research?
When I’m writing historical, a little bit more research is involved because a lot of readers are history buffs—and know their facts. But I still do research when I’m writing contemporary. Right now in a short story I’m writing, a woman is giving birth in a bar, so I had to do research on emergency births.
What main genre do you write in?
Historical Romance – mostly western, but I also delve into contemporary romance.
How does your family feel about having a writer in the family? Do they read your books?
My family is very supportive. Some of them have read a couple of my books, but others are waiting for them to come out in print. A niece is waiting for my contemporaries to come out because she doesn’t like historical. I don’t think there’s any one person in my family who has read them all, lol.
If you had to choose one person to have dinner with, who would it be? And why?
Hillary Clinton. I think she’s an amazing woman. I hope to see her as POTUS one day.
Do you recall how your interest in writing originated?
Yes. When I was a little girl, I started making up stories in my head to entertain myself before I fell asleep at night. This habit continued on well into adulthood. One day I decided in order to get the voices out of my head, I needed to write them down.
Do you write full time?
I write full time hours because I work as a substitute teacher in the high school. At that level, the teacher will generally leave work for the students to do, which they do on their own. I bring my laptop and write.
What did you do before you became a writer?
I’ve had many jobs, but sales was the one I had for the longest time.
What is your writing process? Do you outline, fly by the seat of your pants or a combination of both?
I am a combination writer. I pretty much know what I want my story to be about, but I get about half way through before I actually do any kind of an outline. And that gets changed as I go along, depending on what my characters have to say about it. They don’t always agree with me, and have been known to gang up on me, as well.
If you could be one of your characters - Who would you be? And why?
I would be Sylvia, Angel’s step-mother. She starts out unlikeable, but later on in the story her full personality is revealed, as well as her motivation for what she did to Angel. She’s a hoot.
Can you please give us a sneak peek at any of your upcoming books?
The book I just sold, A Prescription for Love, is the story of the oldest nephew in A Run for Love. Michael was one of my most popular characters. I’m also working on a short contemporary story about a bar in Amarillo, and when I finish that, I intend to get back to a regency I’m writing, The Elusive Wife.
Who is your favorite cover model? And why?
I don’t have a favorite cover model. I like Jimmy Thomas—another nice guy. But I have a policy of ‘no bare chests’ on my book covers. There are a few Jimmy does, and if I self-pub, I would use one of his pre-made covers (where he’s dressed, lol).
Is there a genre of book you would like to write but haven't yet?
Yes. There is definitely a Highlander book in my future, as well as a strict mystery/suspense. I would also like to write a time travel one day.
What would be the best way for readers contact you? Do you have a website?
My website is: www.calliehutton.com, where my blog also lives. I love to get e-mails from my readers, at firstname.lastname@example.org.
How can readers find out more about you and your books?
By visiting my website, where I have excerpts from all my books, as well as coming attractions.
What is the best and worst advice you have ever received?
Best advice: Write, write, write, read, read, read.
Worst advice: Write the book that editors want to buy.
Do you belong to a critique group?
Yes, I do, and I also have other critique partners who are not in my group. If so, how does this help or hinder you? Definitely a help. I don’t always take suggestions that my CPs make, but many times they pick up things that I hadn’t noticed or thought about.
What's your favorite genre to read?
What type of book have you always wanted to write?
A ‘Sandra Brown’ type story, with intrigue, many sub-plots, and a well written, well thought out story.
When did you first decide to submit your work?
After I finished my first manuscript. Please, tell us what or who encouraged you to take this big step. I didn’t need a whole lot of encouragement. To my way of thinking, if you write a book, you send it out. You get rejected. You re-write it. You send it out again, and again, and again. It’s part of the process. If you’re going to be a writer, you have to write. If you want to be a published writer, you have to send it to someone.
Do deadlines help or hinder your muse?
Definitely help. I’m pretty disciplined as far as writing every day, but if I know someone is waiting for it, I pull the all-nighters like I did in college, and get the job done.
What was your first published work and when was it published?
A Run For Love was contracted by Soul Mate Publishing in August of 2011, and released in November of that year. It was the third book I wrote.
Is there anyone who really mentored or inspired you to keep writing until you were finally published?
Not really. I’m pretty good at motivating myself. I’m sure my sales background has something to do with that.
A small wooden table in the corner drew her. She placed the glass on the table and eased her sore and tired body onto the chair. One leg shorter than the other three, the chair rocked as she settled. A woman the size of the counterman came through a curtain separating the area from whatever was in the back. With a brisk nod in Angel’s direction, she headed her way.
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