As the holiday season gets closer, aren't we all looking for books to either give as gifts or to enjoy ourselves during any free relaxation time we might get? Today's guest in My Writing Corner brings us a tale that sounds like it would be great for escaping the upcoming holiday bustle and reading for a while. My guest today is Lee Ann Sontheimer Murphy, and her newest book has just been released.
As an author, she has published more than sixty novels and novellas written as both Lee Ann Sontheimer Murphy and as Patrice Wayne for historical fiction. She is also the author of a new Faery Folk series from Evernight Publishing writing as Liathán O'Murchadha. Her books are found in many places, online and in brick-and-mortar stores including some in both Ireland and Australia. Her current publishers include The Wild Rose Press, World Castle Publishing, Evernight Publishing, and Champagne Books.
She spent her early career in broadcast radio, interviewing everyone from politicians to major league baseball players and writing ad copy. In those radio years she began to write short stories and articles, some of which found publication. In 1994 she married Roy Murphy and they had three children, all now grown-up. Lee Ann spent years in the newspaper field as both a journalist and editor and was widowed in 2019.
She teaches 7th and 8th graders each Sunday at church. In late 2020, she hung up her editor’s hat to return to writing fiction. A native of St. Joseph, Missouri, she lives and works in the rugged, mysterious, and beautiful Missouri Ozarks. Let's find out more about Lee Ann.
What do you enjoy about being an author?
I’ve always been an avid reader so for me, writing fiction is the ultimate experience because as the author I’m in the driver’s seat. I take the story wherever it goes. It’s like reading intensified. I also love sharing my stories with others and I’m stoked when readers like my work.
Tell us about your road to publication.
My ambition was to become a writer from the time I was nine. Over the years I scribbled and wrote. In college, some of my work appeared in campus literary magazines, then after I went to work as an advertising copywriter in broadcast radio, I began writing, submitting, and seeing some acceptances of my fiction. Fast forward to when I got married (1994) and after having twin daughters in 1996, I realized if I didn’t make a real effort to write a novel, my biggest dream, then I might never do it. I would be an old woman with regrets so at the craziest time ever, with twin toddlers, I sat down and started writing novels. After 80 rejections, the first one was accepted. I worried I might be a “one hit wonder” but my husband’s uncle assured me that wouldn’t be the case and it wasn’t.
What is your latest book and how did you come up with the idea to write it?
My newest title is The Scarred Santa (The Wild Rose Press) and it was released on November 13, 2023. For my plots, I usually have a rough idea - usually with a “What if?” question or a “why”....for The Scarred Santa, it began with what if a guy who used to be super handsome was scarred with PTSD after military service? I imagined him going through job after job and brainstormed about what job would work for a scarred man….Santa at the mall cause no one sees his face. From there, the plot developed…he’s lonely, wants love, etc.
What’s your next project?
I like to multi-task. My next submission to The Wild Rose Press is called The Cajun Cowboy. I am currently working with my very thorough and dedicated editor on The Cowboy’s Last Chance although no release date yet. I am also working on a family saga series. The first two books in it have been contracted by World Castle Publishing. I have a long story, The Ice Man Melts, in an upcoming anthology (Tell Me No Lies) from Evernight Publishing and a romantic suspense titled Huck’s Legacy, also from Evernight.
Here are Lee Ann's buy links for Scarred Santa and her social media contacts to learn more about her and her other books.
Amazon: Scarred Santa
Barnes and Noble: Scarred Santa
Social Media Contacts:
Lee Ann Sontheimer Murphy: Rambling and Writing (blog)
https://www.facebook.com/leeannwriter/ Author page
Amazon author page:
World Castle author page:
Evernight author page: