M. C. Bunn will be awarding a $25 Amazon/BN GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour.
Author Interview for M. C. Bunn, author of Where Your Treasure Is (Bellastoria Press)
1. How did you choose your genre? What made you write this book?
It chose me. Or Winifred de la Coeur and Court Furor chose me. Because of my love for the late-Victorian era, England, romance, and my father’s stacks of action-adventure comic books, it was bound to happen. Once I fell in love with Winifred and Court, there was no turning back. I knew the beginning of their story and its end. She was rich and he was poor. There worlds were so different, and there were so many complications—how could they ever possibly be together? I had to find out what happened in the middle.
2. Writers write what they know, and must observe the world. Are you a firstborn, middle or last child, and how does this shape your view of the world?
I was first and last, one and done! My parents were a bit older when I was born, and they both read to me. One of my grandfathers was born in 1888. There were old books and antiques in the house and a story to go with all of them. My father shared his love of history by taking me and my mother to places where it happened. The past always seemed very present.
3. Where is your favorite place to write?
I sit on the couch and my dog sits on me. Or, I sit at the kitchen table and he sits on my lap. Actually, we love to walk, and I write a great deal in my head.
4. How do you feel about killing your darlings, and what do you do with the remains?
My darlings get buried and resurrected over and over. It gets crazy, completely out of control, like Young Frankenstein. If they really stink, they get tossed into the river and I bid them good riddance. Writing is rewriting. That’s why I draft and redraft. Some deleted scenes do end up in other stories. Late at night I take out the ones I secretly saved and still mourn. I gnash my teeth over what might have been. What I really hate is when I fall in love with a character who dies and won’t let me bring them back, but that’s a totally different matter.
5. You are introduced to your favorite author. Who is it, and what is that one burning question you must ask them?
All right, I’m going to punt on this question because I love so many books and have so many favorite authors—but where would we be without Shakespeare? I saw him once in a dream, and even that was amazing.
Dear Will, HOW THE HEIGH-HO DO YOU DO IT???
6. Inquiring minds want to know…tell readers something about you that no one knows.
Sir Ian McKellan (Lord of the Rings, X-Men) once stood on my hair. No joke! The Olney Theater, summer, 1987. He was performing a one-man Shakespeare show and asked volunteers from the audience to come onstage for a battle scene. He quietly instructed us to “drop dead” at his cue. When we did, my ponytail popped out of its clip. He took a step backward and planted his entire foot on my hair. I had to tap his leg, and it got a laugh.
7. You are stranded on a deserted island with only a backpack for company. What three items are in your survival pack?
Let’s assume this is Mary Poppins’ backpack or one like Hermione’s purse. Hmm. One, a volume of Shakespeare. Two, my dog (he’s only twelve pounds). Three, a coffee and chocolate shop in Venice, Italy, where Will is already waiting so that I can ask him that question I had earlier.
8. If you could have one super power in your existence, what would it be?
Oh, bother this having to make choices! Going back in time or flying? Hmm. Today it’s sunny, so let’s fly!
9. Favorite snack?
Salt – and all its glorious vehicles! Popcorn, chips, pretzels, fries!
10. Indy 500 – Do you know how to get where you’re going or do you drive the speed limit?
Oh, dear. Have you ever really stomped on the accelerator, thinking you were in reverse, only to run smack into the garage wall? Never mind, this must be related to my superpower urges. Forget speed limits. Let’s take to the skies. I want to fly Chitty-Bang-Bang!
Where Your Treasure Is
by M. C. Bunn
GENRE: Historical romance, Victorian romance
Feisty, independent heiress Winifred de la Coeur has never wanted to live according to someone else’s rules—but even she didn’t plan on falling in love with a bank robber.
Winifred is a wealthy, nontraditional beauty who bridles against the strict rules and conventions of Victorian London society. When she gets caught up in the chaos of a bungled bank robbery, she is thrust unwillingly into an encounter with Court Furor, a reluctant getaway driver and prizefighter. In the bitter cold of a bleak London winter, sparks fly.
Winifred and Court are two misfits in their own circumscribed worlds—the fashionable beau monde with its rigorously upheld rules, and the gritty demimonde, where survival often means life-or-death choices.
Despite their conflicting backgrounds, they fall desperately in love while acknowledging the impossibility of remaining together. Returning to their own worlds, they try to make peace with their lives until a moment of unrestrained honesty and defiance threatens to topple the deceptions they have carefully constructed to protect each other.
A story of the overlapping entanglements of Victorian London’s social classes, the strength of family bonds and true friendship, and the power of love to heal a broken spirit.
A Spinster Reflects
Winifred de la Coeur was not a traditional beauty, but she was one of a kind. Or so George had whispered while they played cards. He had won the hand and taken hers in his. After all these years, she ought to know better than to trust him.
On the day before she came up to London, she rode her horse Tulip across the fields to inspect the wood. Beyond it lay Hereford Hall’s brick towers, graceful lawns, and chestnut-lined drive. She had given Tulip a smart kick and galloped down the sandy lane that led to the sea. In spite of her elder cousins’ warnings, she and George had raced one another on it many times. She bent over her mare’s neck, urged her to go faster, and pretended to outdistance her neighbor. She was Queen Bess, who ruled a kingdom of her own. No need of any man!
Her pride could not bear that George, or even her family, might suspect that while she had won the battle against her suitors, she had lost the war. At summer’s end, once the field cleared and the dust settled, she discovered she was tired of holding up the increasingly heavy standard of her virginity. The other debutantes of her year had long retired from the lists on their fiancés’ arms or were preoccupied by their confinements. She had attended so many weddings she lost track of the sprays of orange blossom Bettina cleared from her dressing table or the number of silver rattles that she and Amelie had wrapped. Her freedom was not the triumph she had imagined it would be.
The hackney she’d seen earlier pulled alongside them at the curb. A bright spot of purple in the cabby’s hatband, the flower girl’s bunch of violets, caught her eye. Bunched beneath his dark chin was a plum-colored neckerchief, gaudily spotted. His profile was partly hidden under his hat’s brim, and his long, dark hair was pulled back in an old-fashioned queue…. His deep voice and Cockney accent were audible when he spoke to his horse. He was not the sort one would want to meet in a dark alley.
AUTHOR Bio and Links:
M. C. Bunn is a writer of Victorian romance and historical romance novels, a singer (in the indie rock band Mister Felix), and a songwriter. She holds an English degree from UNC-Chapel Hill and a master’s in English from North Carolina State University.
“I’ve always loved writing. It’s a joy to do what makes me happy and to share it.
“My father was a great story-teller. He read to us at the dinner table and passed on his love of history. He’d haul me out of bed in the middle of the night if there was a great old movie on the late show, and family trips always included visits to historic sites. His father was born in 1888, and I have Granddaddy’s letters to his bride-to-be in my dresser. I’m working on the story of Daddy’s first ancestor in America. It’s set in Jamestown, 1690. My mother’s grandmother was placed in an orphanage after the Civil War because her father died on the way home, so I always felt that connection to and had a curiosity about the past. Both of my parents read to me before I could walk. Daddy gave me Dickens, Twain, and Stevenson. Mama put the dictionary in my hands and let me watch I, Claudius and Shoulder to Shoulder when they first aired on Masterpiece Theatre. She told me I’d be a writer one day.”
Acting was another girlhood passion. “I wanted to play all the characters in the books I’d read, or in the stories I made up, like Dickens and Louisa May Alcott did. I also wanted to be an archaeologist because we knew one who worked on digs in Israel. There was never a time when I wasn’t making up a story, and it was always set ‘a long time ago.’ What I really wished for was the car in Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, so I could fly back in time and see what it was actually like for women in Victorian and Edwardian England.”
When she’s not writing, she loves reading long old books. “I love Anthony Trollope’s series, and Anna Karenina. Of more recent vintage, I really enjoyed The Forsyte Saga and The Raj Quartet.”
Her idea of a well-appointed room includes multiple bookshelves, a full pot of coffee, and a place to lie down and read. To feed her soul, she takes a walk or makes music with friends. “I try to remember to look up at the sky and take some time each day to be thankful.”
She lives in North Carolina with her husband and their dog. Where Your Treasure Is is her first published novel.