Michelle Irwin

1     Tell us a little bit about yourself (family, hobbies, pets, etc).

I am a paranormal romance author primarily, although it could be argued that I straddle the border of urban fantasy. I do dabble in contemporary on occasion, but I love to explore the possibilities of what might be lurking just behind the curtain if you know how to pull it back. I live in Queensland, Australia, with my husband and daughter. We have a cat, Tom. Well, it’s soon to be two cats but don’t tell my daughter it’s a surprise for her. At the moment, my hobby is writing because I work full-time in an accounting role. I love to travel though. My dream is to tour the rest of Australia, the UK and USA in the not too distant future.

2     How did you get into writing and why romance?

I’ve always dabbled in writing. In fact, in high school I wrote a haiku about worms that won me a school-wide poetry contest. As I grew older though life got in the way, so while I was still an avid reader I didn’t find the time to put the words down. My path back to writing is probably a little unusual, but I know a few who have taken it. Basically it involves Doctor Who, Youtube, parallel universes, and a little thing called Fanfiction. I started to put words on the page as a series of ‘what-ifs’ for different fandoms that I was into. Being free to play with other people’s toys (characters) taught me so much about plotting and dialogue and my time there has been invaluable. After writing around 10 novel-length stories on Fanfiction, my ideas were just too big and my own characters too loud to continue playing in other kids’ sandboxes any longer so I started to tinker with my original fictions. The rest is, as they say, history.

And why romance? My husband would tell you that I’m the most unromantic person in the world. If he tries to surprise me, I’ll usually just laugh at him. I’m not a fan of getting flowers (they die too quickly) and if I want something I’ll usually just get it myself. We didn’t even have the traditional flower-filled proposal, more just a mutual decision to get hitched. But despite all of that, I love love. I don’t think love has to be about red roses and hundred dollar chocolates. Love, and even romance, is in the little things. Whether you believe in soul mates or just the fact that you should be with someone you consider your best friend first, I think that the drive to find companionship is human nature. Writing romance, especially paranormal romance, allows me to explore that human nature in interesting ways.

In Through the Fire, my main character is caught in the middle of a battle that she doesn’t want any part because of what she is, and she’s faced with a love interest on the opposite side of that war. Can these two opposites ever come together? Can love force you to overlook prejudice? Is love enough? That’s the sort of things romance novels get a chance to explore—and the characters and their relationships get to come first.

3     Do you ever re-enact the sex scenes you write about?

Hehehe, if you listen to my husband the answer would probably be yes. He likes to tell everyone who will listen that each scene is planned and plotted as live action for accuracy. But in reality, no. I mean, there are certain bits that are probably technically re-enactments, but some bits are the same bits regardless of whether they are in a novel or real life, know what I mean? No? Okay, I’ll just go sit back over in this corner.

4     Name a romance book or series you would love to see as a movie/TV Series.

Can I say my own? I know it’s probably vain and the ultimate in arrogance, but Evie and Clay are just so alive in my head right now after almost finishing their series (in writing, not in releasing yet) that I can literally see the way the scenes would play out. No? I can’t say my own? Hmm, not sure if it’s exactly romance but Frankie Rose’s Blood and Fire series was like a movie in my head as I read it.

5     Have you ever read a book based solely on its cover?

Yes. The series I was talking about above? I saw the cover for Halo (the new cover, not the original one) and it was just so captivating that I had to know more about it. It was also free at the time. So I one-clicked it. Truthfully, it then sat unread on my kindle app for about a month or so until I was flicking through the carousel again and saw it. I started reading and didn’t stop until I hit the end of book two. Now I’m hanging for book three.

6     What is your ideal way to end a long day?

Writing is my therapy. If I have a hard day, I love nothing more than to come home flick on my laptop and torture my characters for a while.

7     Describe your ultimate holiday.

One that never ends? LOL I actually had an experience very close to my ultimate holiday last December when I got to travel to London and get face to face with my idol David Tennant after seeing him perform Shakespeare live on stage. The only thing that let that holiday down was that it wasn’t quite long enough to do everything I wanted and I couldn’t take my family with me.

8     Who is your favourite book boyfriend and why?

I know this is probably going against every fangirl code there is, but I don’t think I really have one. I guess if I’m pressed, I’d have to say Edward from Twilight, but the thing is if he was real and in front of me I’d be more inclined to want to kick his ass for being so overprotective than wanting to kiss him. Why choose him then? Well, what I mentioned about how I got writing . . . yeah, Edward was one of my playthings for a while. And so was the Doctor, rawr!

9     What turns you on and what turns you off?

Literally or in a book. I think if I take the literal option, I will be giving people WAY too much ammunition hehehe, so I’ll take the option of adding “in a romance novel” to the end of the question (see how I dodged there, that was great dodging, right?). I love strong women and loving men. I don’t mind a good alpha character, but he has to have a heart. If he’s all bastard all the time he can just move along. I’m not a fan of cheating in books. Unless there is a damn good reason for it (and I mean DAMN good) or it’s only a minor part of the plot it’s usually an insta-DNF, or not even start, for me.

10     Boxers or briefs?  Or commando???

On men? Boxers. Especially in fiction. There’s just something that’s sexy about peeling away his boxer shorts than his y-fronts. Commando in certain situations maybe, but I just can’t help but think of all the chafing, sweat, and leakage if they get excited and it just grosses me out (sorry, TMI?).

11     Who is on your top five “Freebie List”?

Hmm, another hard one because my favourite actors and the ones I’m most attracted to aren’t necessarily ones that I’d want to jump into bed with. Maybe I’m afraid of shattering the illusion. For example, I love David Tennant. I think he is so intelligent, seems so sweet and caring, is sexy as all get out, is funny as hell, but I don’t think I’d have him on my freebie list. Maybe because I think he’s so cute with Georgia.

Okay, back on point. I guess the Supernatural boys would have to be on there. Jensen especially. There are a few guys that I’ve been stalking photos of totally for research purposes and picspiration for my characters and a few of them are pretty fine.

I really think I need to go back to the drawing board on this one. It shouldn’t be this hard, should it? * Do we need to up the limit? – VDub *

12     You have a table booked for four in your favourite restaurant. Who would you invite to join you?

David Tennant  –  Jensen Ackles  –  Misha Collins

And now my husband will probably be mad with me for not including him. So I’ll have to ring the restaurant back and ask them to squeeze and extra seat onto the table, otherwise he’ll probably take my place LOL.

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