Joining me today in The Loft is award-winning author Linda O'Connor. Linda draws on her experiences as a practicing physician to develop funny and sexy tales of romance. (And these days, everyone needs a laugh!) When not writing or working at an Urgent Care Clinic, she enjoys cycling, cross-country skiing, skating, and dancing. The mother of three grown sons, Linda resides in Canada. Her favorite prescription? Laugh every day. Love every minute.
S: Good morning, Linda. It's good to have you back in The Loft!
Why did you become a writer?
L: I’m a physician, and I started writing because I wanted to find a fun way to disseminate medical information, and to educate and empower readers to take ownership of their health. Targeting a female audience with romance novels seemed like a good idea, because women are usually the ones who see a doctor. Men typically only go when a girlfriend, partner, spouse, or mom encourages them to do so. I write romantic comedies because I love being in a fun headspace when I’m writing. Laughter is essential to great health and nothing is better than a happily-ever-after ending.
S: Did you undergo any sort of education or preparation/training to become a writer?
L: I don’t have any formal writing education, but I took advantage of multiple online workshops. They were great, because I could target my areas of weakness and use examples of my writing, or my current work-in-progress, to learn from.
S: What is your favorite thing about writing romance?
L: I love romance’s happily-ever-after endings. There may be ups and downs, obstacles and laughter, but it’s knowing that there will be a happy ending that makes romance my favorite.
S: What attracted you to the romance genre?
L: I read to escape and love that romances have happily-ever-after endings. Because I’ve read a lot, I know what romance readers expect in a story, so it made it easy for me to write in that genre. I also appreciate that you can query publishers directly when you write romance--you don’t necessarily have to have an agent. It has a large market with a group of voracious readers, which is great for sales, and there are a wide range of sub-genres in romance so you can write anything from historical to suspense to romantic comedy, which is my personal favorite.
S: What is your writing process?
L: Sometimes, I have a great idea for a plot line and then I dream up the characters who would add the most fun. Sometimes, the characteristics of the hero and heroine are what drives the plot, so I start with that. I can't start writing until I've nailed down the heroine's and hero's names. The name of the males is the hardest. It has to be a name that I don't associate with anyone else. With three sons and five nephews, and all of their friends, it becomes a challenge!
S: Why did you write "Don't Mess with Christmas?" What was your inspiration?
L: This is the fourth book of the Dr. Brogan Matchmaking Doctor series. All of the books in the series are stand-alone stories, but Brogan Corkie’s own romance arcs throughout the series, so it is preferable to read them in order. I think it’s rare these days to come from a large family. I thought it would be fun to write a story about a woman who grew up smack dab in the middle of four brothers. Imagine how that would affect her perception of men. Parker Roy owns a hydroponic business, runs a Christmas Shoppe, plows snow in the winter, and volunteers as a set designer for the local theatre. She’s self-sufficient and independent. Falling in love is not on her bucket list. So what is she going to do when the very sexy, very determined, very interested Julian Murphy wants to change her mind?
S: Is there anything about "Don't Mess with Christmas" that makes it special to you? To readers?
L: This book has a Christmas theme. I find the Christmas season hectic, and I love to read to unwind and relax. I hope that this story finds itself in reader’s hands and that they can take a moment for themselves to sit, relax, laugh, and escape from the hustle and bustle of the season.
Here's the blurb--
Dr. Brogan Corkie is happily semi-retired from medicine and now has time for other hobbies. Her passion for food is second only to her skill at matchmaking!
Parker Roy grew up in the middle of four brothers and has lived with enough testosterone to last her a lifetime. She’s finally moved out and made a life of her own. Between putting the finishing touches on the set for Mapleton’s Christmas play, plowing snow, and transforming her hydroponic greenhouse into a Christmas wonderland, it’s ramping up to be a hectic season.
Dr. Julian Murphy, the only allergist in town, has his eye on the woman behind the set design of the holiday play. He’s volunteering backstage in the hope of getting to know her. There’s a bit of a snag when she’s referred to his clinic for a rash – doctors aren’t allowed to date their patients – but Dr. Brogan Corkie doesn’t see it as an insurmountable problem and steps in to give their romance a nudge. She’d better be right because, if not, it could seriously mess with Christmas.
The allergist or the rash– which itch does Parker want to scratch?
S: Where can readers buy your book?
L: It's available at https://www.amazon.com/dp/B08L1DHDMS.
S: Linda, thanks so much for joining me today! If you would like to learn more about Linda and her books, please visit--
Amazon Author Page: https://www.amazon.com/Linda-OConnor/e/B00S7CNLEA