I’ve had the pleasure of chatting with Australian romance author, Fiona Lowe who has dropped by to chat about her latest release with Carina Press, Saved by the Bride. Fiona Lowe is a RITA® and R*BY award-winning, multi-published author with Harlequin and Carina Press. Whether her books are set in outback Australia or in the mid-west of the USA, they feature small towns with big hearts, and warm, likeable characters that make you fall in love. When she’s not writing stories, she’s a weekend wife, mother of two ‘ginger’ teenage boys, guardian of 80 rose bushes and often found collapsed on the couch with wine.
Hello! It’s lovely to be here.
How would you describe Saved by the Bride in five words?
Fun and flirty with heart.
What inspired you to write this story and why did you choose to set it in the USA?
My family and I lived in Wisconsin for quite a few years and loved it. In fact, we’ve been back to visit twice recently. Small town Australia and small town USA are similar in many ways so it wasn’t a huge leap to set a book there.
Whitetail, Wisconsin is a small town on the brink of financial ruin (the global financial slowdown was the inspiration for this novel and the Wedding Fever trilogy). But as Finn in Saved By The Bride says, “No matter what, people keep getting married.” And since Whitetail residents have always thrown great weddings for their own, they decide to open their doors and make the area a wedding destination. Annika, the heroine and acting mayor, is not so sure.
What do you enjoy especially about writing stories set in small towns, whether they are in Australia or the USA?
Small towns are a close knit community generally used to getting by with a lot less bells and whistles than their city counterparts. Everybody knows your name and usually every indiscretion you ever committed. For some people that’s enough of a reason to flee to the city but for others, it’s why they stay. I live in a moderately sized town but even so, every time I go shopping I run into someone I know, which means I really should rethink dashing into the grocery store for milk wearing my gardening clothes or my sweat pants…please don’t tell my mother! I love creating a community and exploring what makes the residents tick.
Saved by the Bride is book one of the Wedding Fever series, can you tell us what else we can expect from this series?
There are three books in the series and Saved By The Bride introduces the town and a cast of characters whose stories feature in subsequent books. Each book has a primary and secondary romance as well as a minor character story.
Picture Perfect Wedding is about a Luke Anderson, a 6th generation farmer who’s having a quarter life crisis which is exacerbated by the arrival of Erin Davis, a wedding photographer who wants to shoot a wedding in his sunflower field so she can boost her fledgling business. Luke reckons sunflowers are a crop and covered bridges are to protect against ice and there’s nothing romantic about any of it. Nicole Lindquist, the town’s wedding planner is a young war widow trying to live her life in a town where everyone owns her husband’s memory.
In the third book, Runaway Groom, Ben is an Australian on a road trip from Antarctica to Alaska running from the fallout of his own wedding. He finds himself stuck in Whitetail with Amy who’s busy running from her own demons. The secondary story in this novel belongs to Melissa, the owner of the dress shop. With her biological clock ticking, she has very firm opinions on who she is looking for in a life partner and now that Luke Anderson is no longer available, she’s having to start over. Each book has an element of fun as well as a more serious side and of course, they all have a happy ever after.
Have you felt pressured to write something equally successful as Boomerang Bride since you won the RITA® and R*BY awards? If so, how do you manage this?
Reading is very subjective. For as many people who read and loved Boomerang Bride, there were as many who didn’t love it. I am still wondering what it was about it that made it an award favorite and part of me thinks it was the breast cancer survivor story…or not. That’s the thing, if you ask ten people what they liked about the book, you will get ten different answers. I think some of my Harlequin Medical romances have been more emotional a read than Boomerang Bride but none of them have ever been nominated for a RITA although two have for a R*BY. As an author I would drive myself around the twist if I analyzed this too much so I just write the next book and I always aim to write the best story I can.
And just for fun, when writing do you prefer…
Coffee, tea or hot chocolate? TEA! And a girl can never just have one cup. I always make a pot with leaf tea and have three cups.
Plotting, pantsing or both? BOTH!
Quiet solitude or background noise? SILENCE, I write wearing earplugs even when it’s quiet.
A warm, sunny day or a rainy day? Both have their joys. I hate the heat. Give me a cold night with an open fire and a glorious day of no more than 25 degrees Celsius.
Typing or pen and notepad? I write on a computer, but I always have a notepad and pen in my bag to jot down ideas.
Thank you for the chat Fiona!
Thank you for having me!
To learn more about Fiona Lowe’s Fever Wedding series, you can watch the book trailer here. Book #1, Saved by the Bride, is available now at Amazon, Nook, Carina Press and other online book retailers.
Welcome to Whitetail, Wisconsin, future home of Weddings that WOW!
As acting mayor, Annika will do anything to revive the economy of the town that’s been her refuge ever since her art career imploded and her fiancé walked out. Even if it means crashing an engagement party to talk business with the bride’s billionaire father. But the evening starts with a kiss from a gorgeous stranger—and ends with a night in jail.
Finn Callahan can’t believe his sister is getting married, not after their parents’ disastrous track record. And he’d rather be anywhere than working from his family’s vacation home. Until he catches a leggy blonde sneaking in the window, and suddenly telecommuting for the season is very appealing.
Unable to resist their mutual attraction, Annika and Finn are soon mixing business and pleasure—just for the summer. Too bad Annika’s heart missed the memo about not falling in love…
Book one of Wedding Fever.