Interview: Molly Harper

NRR: Can you share with us how you got started into writing?

I’ve always been a story teller, but I didn’t consider it a possible profession until my high school English teacher compared my writing voice to Erma Bombeck.  I became interested in journalism and humor columns, then majored in print journalism at Western Kentucky University. After graduation, I landed a job with the Paducah Sun and married my high school sweetheart, David, a local police officer. After six years at the newspaper, I took a more family-friendly secretarial position at a local church office.

David worked nights and I was alone with our small child in the “The Apartment of Lost Souls.” A big fan of vampire movies and TV shows, I decided to write a vampire romance novel.  I wanted to write the most embarrassing transition to vampirism ever, so I created Jane Jameson, a bit of an accidental loser. Jane is single, almost 30, and a librarian working in Half-Moon Hollow, Ky. She has become a permanent fixture on her Mama’s prayer list. And despite the fact that she’s pretty good at her job, she just got canned so her boss could replace her with someone who occasionally starts workplace fires. Jane drowns her sorrows at the local faux nostalgia-themed sports bar. On her way home, she’s mistaken for a deer and shot by a drunk hunter. And then she wakes up as a vampire. The three-book Jane Jameson series–which includes Nice Girls Don’t Have Fangs, Nice Girls Don’t Date Dead Men and Nice Girls Don’t Live Forever—was released in 2009. 

NRR: How were you inspired to write the Naked Werewolf series?

In January 2009, an ice storm ripped through Kentucky, taking out power and phone lines for thousands of homes, including mine. The first night I spent camped out in my in-laws’ darkened living room with my two young children, I was sure this was just a temporary blip. It was going to be a funny story we could tell the next winter. As in, “Remember that night we had to sleep on an air mattress in front of Grandma’s fireplace and cook on a gas grill in the garage?” 

Six days later, I was no longer amused.

But I managed to channel my cabin fever, before going the full fire-ax-through-bedroom-door and elevator-full-of-blood route. I started writing. I’d already decided that I wanted to write a werewolf story. And being isolated, in the dark, in an increasingly crowded, enclosed space, I decided to set the story in the frozen regions of Alaska. 

While we waited for the power to come back on, I wrote about twenty pages of notes by candlelight. What emerged was the story of Mo Wenstein, a woman who moves across the country to escape her intrusive hippie parents and make a life for herself in the remote town of Grundy, Alaska. Cantankerous neighbor Cooper has been giving Mo a hard time about her place in her new community since day one. But when Cooper stumbles onto her porch, naked, with a bear trap clamped around his ankle, she realizes there’s more to him than a surly- though attractive- surface. A series of werewolf attacks, for which Cooper may or may not be responsible, dysfunctional werewolf clan drama, and romantic hijinks ensue.

The manuscript grew over the next few months and became HOW TO FLIRT WITH A NAKED WEREWOLF, which as released by Pocket Books on Feb. 22, wherever books are sold. The sequel, THE ART OF SEDUCING A NAKED WEREWOLF, is being released on March 29. 

NRR:  What is in your to be read pile?

I’m still trying to finish Water for Elephants, Bleak House, and Mansfield Park.

NRR: You recently just visited the Wolf Run Wildlife Refuge. Can you share with us what that experience was like for you?

I loved meeting my wolf hybrid buddies, Boone and Razz.  They were absolute sweethearts.  But seeing the packs of 23 wolves and wolf hybrids living at the facility, I really can’t imagine having one as a housepet! (Most of the wolves/hybrids at the facility are pets that were confiscated or surrendered by their owners.) I’m so glad that they have a place to go where they’re loved and cared for, but I’m sad that such a facility is necessary.

For more information about Wolf Run, go to http://www.wolfrun.org/index.html

NRR: What is your guilty pleasure?

Bad sci-fi movies. I mean, baaaaad. As in, “staring Casper Van Dien” bad. 

NRR: Can you share with us the storyline of The Art Of Seducing A Naked Werewolf?

Generations of werewolves have been secretly residing in a secluded valley a stone’s throw from Grundy, Alaska. So when a snooping Outsider comes to Grundy to investigate rumors of lycanthropic shenanigans in the area, the valley’s pack alpha, Maggie Graham, resolves to chase him away, even if doing so takes a quick bite on the butt. What a pity that researcher Nick Thatcher turns out to be so drool-worthy, and that his kisses make Maggie want to sit up and beg. Maggie just can’t seem to convince Nick to leave . . . and even worse, she can’t convince herself to stay away from him. Cross-species dating is problem enough for a harried alpha female, but on top of that, a rival group of werewolves is trying to move into the valley. With interpack war threatening, Maggie can’t afford to be distracted. Combining romance and a career can be tough for anyone; for a werewolf in love with a human, it may be disastrous. . . . 

NRR:  What can fans expect to see next from you?

A fourth Jane Jameson book will be released in March 2012. And I’m writing two “spinoff” books set in Half-Moon Hollow.


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