10 QUESTIONS FOR, “One Night in Memphis” author Allie Boniface


Author interview with Allie BonifaceONIMCoverscan0004

I’m a high school English teacher who lives in the northern NYC suburbs with my husband and two adorable fur-babies, Smooch and Kitty.  I’m published in contemporary romance with Samhain Publishing and The Wild Rose Press and was a recent contributor to the anthology My Mom is My Hero. 
1. Tell us about your latest book.

ONE NIGHT IN MEMPHIS is my second “one night” novel published with Samhain Publishing.  In a nutshell, these books take place over a single day and night: 24 hours in 24 chapters. Hey, most romance novels unfold over weeks or months or even years.  But I wanted to explore those moments when you meet someone who really does change your life overnight – fireworks and all!

ONE NIGHT IN MEMPHIS is the story of waitress Dakota James, who leaves rural New Hampshire for a weekend in – where else? – Memphis, TN, after breaking up with her boyfriend.  While clubbing on Beale Street with her best friend, she meets writer Ethan Meriweather, who’s nursing a broken heart.  One thing leads to another, and the two wind up falling for each other…amid a crazy ex who tracks Dakota to Beale St., a bar fight, and a car chase at dawn. 

The book has gotten some great reviews, including 5 stars from Literary Nymphs, 5 Hearts from The Romance Studio, and an Outstanding Read from Writers and Readers of Distinctive Fiction. It was also an EPPIE 2009 finalist.
2. How did you get started as a writer?

I was always dabbling, I suppose, with a plan to become a writer “someday,” but after 9/11 I realized that “someday” wasn’t necessarily a guarantee and shouldn’t be pushed to the back burner too much longer.  I got my butt in gear and started writing seriously just a few weeks later.
3. What does a typical day look like for you?

Well, from September to June I’m pretty much teaching all day, grading papers at night and on the weekends, and trying to squeeze in a few workouts at the gym to keep myself sane.  I do get some writing done during the school year thanks to my very patient, very supportive husband, but summers are when I have the most free time to work on my novels.
4. Describe your desk/workspace.

I mostly compose on my laptop, which is great since I can follow the sun around my house!
5. Favorite books (especially for writers)

I like anything by Jodi Picoult, from a reader’s POV, and I highly recommend Stephen King’s On Writing, from a writer’s POV.  Actually, I’ll read anything at all by King!  He’s a master storyteller.
6. Tell us 3 interesting/crazy things about you

I am addicted to Zumba.

I actually love teaching teenagers (!)

I spent 5 weeks one summer after graduate school traveling the US with a very small tent, very little money, a car without air conditioning, and an ex-boyfriend who was trying to “find himself.”
7. Favorite quote

“You gain strength, courage, and confidence by every experience in which you really stop to look fear in the face. You must do the thing you think you cannot do.” ~Eleanor Roosevelt
8. Best and worst part of being a writer

Best: getting to create an entire world with characters that become people you actually care about.

Worst: the rejection. It’s tough hearing “no” from agents/editors/publishers, and it’s tough hearing snark from reviewers. Writers have to grow a thick skin.
9. Advice for other writers

Like I said, toughen up.  Some people will love your work and others will hate it (or not even care enough to read it).  March on.  Believe in your story and your talent. Try again. Pick yourself up when you think you can’t. 

10. Tell us a story about your writing experience.

When I was in fifth grade, my teacher signed my yearbook, “Someday I’ll read books written by you!” I never forgot that, and I dedicated my first book to her some 25 years later.  Last summer, she invited me to her local book club to discuss that book!  It was probably one of the highlights of my writing career so far, to give back to her what she gave to me all those years ago.
Where can people buy your book?

ONE NIGHT IN MEMPHIS is now available in print!  Visit www.allieboniface.com/books for more information. I blog every day as well, and often run contests, so stop by www.allieboniface.blogspot.com too!


4 responses »

  1. Allie,

    I love the story about your fifth-grade teacher.

    I was also struck that both of us had a realization that “someday” might not come. Your wake-up call was 9/11; mine was a stroke.

  2. Is it weird I don’t know what Zumba is? LOL…

    And you deserve those accolades on the book. And, YES, “On Writing” is a fabulous book!! It’s the first I recommend to anyone looking for a good writing book.

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