To tell our followers and readers the purpose of this interview – Z. A. Maxfield – one of the renowned authors of M/M genre – has a new book added to the collection of her great works. “My Cowboy Heart” released on the 20th of August, 2013 under the glorious banner of Intermix Publishing House.
It’s an immense pleasure to have you on The Blog of Sid Love, Zam and I wish to make your stop memorable here.
Thanks so very much. It’s a real pleasure to be here.
The mention of “Cowboy” in the title got my instant attention, I admit and I am sure I am not the only one around here who is so very excited to read this book. Cowboys are just the hottest thing that walk on earth after all, don’t you think? And that too, in an M/M Romance? It has got to be a steamy blast!
I do like cowboys! There have been some Westerns that have really made me a cowboy lover, among them, The Magnificent Seven, Young Guns, Silverado, The Unforgiven, and even classics like High Noon.
Okay, give us a mental picture of both the main characters and if they do resemble to a particular actor/celebrity that has inspired each of these characters, we want to know that too!
Malloy is an enigma. I imagined him asan average man in his early thirties, hard working, unremarkable looking except maybe his eyes. I think he’s a little haunted. He’s good through and through. He’s the kind of man you can depend on. Since the book is in the first person, I am going to let you insert your favorite action hero here! (Or insert him anywhere, really, I won’t judge.)
I would have howled like a wolf right now, but considering what we are actually here for, I will just move on. *chuckles* So, Malloy – he is the serious, brooding kind. Why do I feel there’s some painful story behind his tough exterior?
Malloy had a very painful childhood. He has lots of emotional scars left by a mother who cared more about using drugs and men to feel better about her crappy life. That’s why Malloy’s not adept socially. He loves — and is fiercely loyal to — the Jenkins family, who took him in. Beyond that, there isn’t anyone he really connects with.
But Crispin is the one who manages to break through his shell. He is *fans self* hot – to put it mildly. But what I am curious about is – he seems more than just a pretty face.
Crispin was an unusual choice, I guess. He’s one of my quirky men. He was born and raised in LA. His parents were actors. They were Scientologists. When they passed away, he moved to New Mexico to be with his aunt, and it was there that he kind of fell into ranching. He has a a sort of simpatico with animals and he loves nature. He’s half city and half country and you never know what’s going to come out of his mouth. He’s happy-go-lucky in a way that gets Malloy to open up. Malloy basks in his easygoing sociability like sunshine.
When did the idea for “My Cowboy Heart” pop up in your head?
I guess I was looking for a sweet romance, something with nature in it. Animals and weather. I know that’s an oversimplification but usually, I get my ideas character first, scene second, and story third. So I pictured a quiet cowboy trying to figure out what to do with a non-stop talker and it moved on from there.
Authors always find themselves at a point where they get stuck – either it is because they are experiencing the infamous, cruel “writer’s block” or there is a certain part that just is too difficult to write. Was there any such moment when you were writing this book?
I had to make a couple of plot choices that were tricky, as you’ll see. I threw in a little silliness and I let someone experience a terrible loss… Sometimes letting a character suffer goes against my nature, but I made myself cry, so I felt like I had something I didn’t want to lose.
How long did it take for you to complete “My Cowboy Heart”? (The timeframes can be specified for first draft and subsequent drafts till it was finally sent to the editor)
I did the rough draft lickety-split, because I really hadn’t done much writing in a while and I loved the work. If you know about last year, you know part of my house burned down, and I took quite a lot of time off to deal with that. Cowboy Heart was my first real novel after that, so I felt happy to be writing again.
Well, I feel like getting a kick of a humor – so for a change, I would ask you to describe the funniest scene in MCH!
I have to guess, because what’s funny to me isn’t always funny to everyone else. I’d say it’s when Crispin asks the hands whether they ever wonder if the sheep mind when the humans wear sheepskin jackets.
My Cowboy Heart is special in many ways, of course, but the main reason why it stands apart is because this book is published by Intermix. For those who aren’t aware – Intermix is a venture of none other than Penguin Group, USA. Zam, I would like you to share with us your experience working with such a professional brand.
They’re amazing. Very professional. I can’t wait to meet my editor in person some day. She was very kind.
From what I know, My Cowboy Heart has got a continuing story. Can you tell us about the sequel in works?
There are four cowboys at the J-Bar, Malloy, Crispin, Jim and Ed. They all — for one reason or another — got “rescued” by the owner, Mr. Jenkins, and they have a LOT more in common than they’ve ever realized. Someone, I can’t remember who, calls it “The island of Misfit Cowboys.”
Jim and Eddie are best friends but they keep their private shit private. Jim’s a jerk when Crispin comes along, and that’s when Ed finally reveals he’s gay. Ed has a friend-with-benefits and they love each other, but their situation is complicated. Jim’s a horndog whose drinking is making things worse.
Unfortunately, the ranch may be changing hands, and Malloy and Ed are worried about Jim’s future if he doesn’t sober up. It’s up to Ed to get Jim flying right, just in case they all find themselves looking for work.
Do you write everyday? Give us a peek into your normal day-to-day life.
I do write every day. I try to do 2K. Sometimes I get it done, sometimes I don’t. I answer emails, I manage loops and groups and promo. I write blog posts. I hang out with my family. I have two kids in high school and two in college but everyone is home right now.
Other than writing – or reading, for that matter – what hobbies do you have?
Uh…is there something OUT THERE besides books? LOL… This year, I’ve been making an effort to go to the theater. I saw Twelfth Night and MacBeth and Aida.
Here is a list of questions where you have to describe a moment that is asked for:
1) Scariest moment of your life:
I was in a terrible car wreck when my kids were little. We were pulling a trailer and it went airborn somehow and flipped and skidded, overturning our Expedition completely and just dragging us across five lanes of traffic at 60 miles per hour. My glasses flew off, so I couldn’t see. I was upside down hanging from my car seat in shock. It was only when strangers came to show me how to crawl out of the wreckage that I remembered my husband and I had four kids — two still in car seats — and a black lab somewhere in that car with us. (Strangers had got them out first and had them all safely wrangled at the side of the road.)
The good news about that is we were all relatively unscratched, thank God.
2) The moment when you experienced the beauty of first kiss.
Seventh grade, Craig Oates. It’s really, really weird in retrospect — he had the same coloring as my husband and looked enough (at the time) like my daughter to be her sibling. Do I have a type??? YES. I do.
3) The moment when you got your first book published.
That day! I swear I felt like I was hoisting my undies up onto a flagpole for everyone to see. That was so INTIMATE. Letting people see my work was so hard. Even when it was well received (it was Crossing Borders and there were fans who really liked it right away) I felt a little exposed.
4) A moment that you will always wish you could go back and change
There are a lot of times in my life I wish I’d been kinder, more patient, or that I’d cherished people more. I have a good friend I lost touch with and wish I’d been more proactive about that.
5) And describe yourself in a way you would describe a character in your stories.
I’m everyone’s zaftig elfin mother. All smiles, unless you’re the kid who ate the last PopTart.
Tell us about the books you are currently reading.
Right now I’m reading the Horatio Hornblower books by C.S. Forester. I love the age of sail.
Is there such a person in your life who you idolize?
I have idols of the moment, for example that kid who performed the splashy Bar Mitzvah dance from the Internet. I like meme cats and the occasional Boylesque dancer. There are people I admire, like the Dalai Lama and people I kind of think are hot, like Mark Wahlberg. I’m not sure I actually idolize anyone.
Do you have any message to your readers and fans?
I am so grateful to be the author whose books you choose to read! I want to give you a great read — a great ride — every time, and I hope you never hesitate to drop me a line and tell me what’s on your mind!
Thank you for taking time to answer my questions so patiently, Zam. I would conclude by wishing you all the very best for not only “My Cowboy Heart” but also for all your future works. We hope to see more coming from you.
Thank you so much for allowing me to be part of your blog. Have a great day!
My Cowboy Heart
A cowboy’s heart has room for anything…
J-Bar ranch foreman Malloy pretty much keeps to himself—slinking around the edges of everybody else like an old coyote, doing his job and staying private. That is until Crispin Carrasco shows up.
Lean, muscular, and with a motor mouth that won’t quit, Crispin sparks something in Malloy—something the foreman didn’t know was there. But how does a lone coyote approach the warmth of a fire? And more important, what would happen if that fire burned?
NOTE: Book is only available in ebook format
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Z. A. Maxfield started writing in 2007 on a dare from her children and never looked back. Pathologically disorganized, and perennially optimistic, she writes as much as she can, reads as much as she dares, and enjoys her time with family and friends. If anyone asks her how a wife and mother of four manages to find time for a writing career, she’ll answer, “It’s amazing what you can accomplish if you give up housework.”
Her published books include Crossing Borders, Drawn Together, and the St. Nacho’s and Brothers Grime series from Loose Id, ePistols at Dawn and The Pharaoh’s Concubine from Samhain Publishing, and Notturno, Vigil, Stirring Up Trouble, and All Stirred Up from MLR Press.
FB Author Page: https://www.facebook.com/pages/ZAMaxfield/165809416786338
Grand Prize: 1 winner will receive a $50 Gift Card to either Amazon or B&N (winner’s choice) and an e-copy of “My Cowboy Heart”.
Additional Prize: 3 additional winners will be selected to receive e-book copies of “My Cowboy Heart”
Click the following link to enter yourself!!
FOLLOW “MY COWBOY HEART” BLOG TOUR! Check out the schedule here: