I wanted to write an urban fairytale with a classic “happily-ever-after.”  After three novels that focused primarily on interrelationships among female family members, I wanted to return to a more traditional love story.

I grew up hitting the pavement for various politicians, mostly in my childhood stomping grounds of the North Bronx, so local politics was in my blood.  Not enough to run for office, but enough to write about it.  So that became a key element of the story.  Then I peppered it with fictionalized life experiences, my own impressions during a much-needed head-clearing trip to Dublin and its environs, and created the first hero I’ve ever fallen in love with.  Sure, I enjoyed writing about “Bear” in Miss Match and Jack in Reality Check, and they possessed qualities that I admire.  But I really fell head over heels for Jamie, and had to keep reminding myself that he’s a fictional character because I kept expecting to run into a man like that.  And yet if you were to ask me to imagine the ultimate film cast for Herself, Jamie is the one character I can’t pigeonhole.  And perhaps that’s the way he should be; maybe every reader should envision their own Jamie from the character I created on the page—although I still wouldn’t mind that film contract.

Oddly enough, while Herself was in the publishing pipeline, I met a man with a wry sense of humor, a generous soul, and a twinkle in his eye; a man who was not merely willing, but eager, to find a way to fit his life into mine-even if it meant crossing half the world to be together-rather than the other way around.  Not only that, soon after we met, he was absolutely sure I was the woman for him, and just like Herself‘s protagonist, Tessa, it took a bit of convincing before I came around.And so, dear reader, I married him.