Answers to YOUR Questions-#2

October 11th?  October 11th?  Ugh!  Talk about a BIG, nasty fail!!!  I planned on answering some questions every week…and apparently, I can’t even do it once a quarter!  Fail!!!

IMG_3434However, it IS a new year, and I do like to Blog…just wish I had more time to do so.  Still, I figured I’d attempt to answer a few more questions written on a few more index cards that I brought home with me a few more months ago!

I’m only doing three cards from my deck today…being that a couple of them require wordy answers, okay?  And here we go:

Top Card Questions:

Question #1:  What did you study in college?

My Answer:  Officially I was a Secretarial Science major with a minor in History.  History was/is one of my passions, but I didn’t want to be a teacher, and had already done tons of secretarial work during high school and knew that, at that time, it was a job that paid well.  My mother was a legal secretary and I was always fascinated with the things she was privy to and go to work on. Yep…I’m so old that I learned to take and transcribe Short Hand in college and used afterward!  Can you imagine?!?!  🙂

Question #2:  Are your children named after people you know?

My Answer:  Yes, no and yes!  Ha ha!  My daughter, Sandy Ann, is named after my close, close, bosom friend, Sandy!  Sandy the Elder, as we call my friend, was my roommate in college and 33 years later we’re just as close as we ever were!  Therefore, my daughter, Sandy the Younger, as we refer to my daughter at times, is absolutely named after someone I know–someone I love with every part of my heart!

My second child and first son, Mitchel Lee…isn’t named after Mitch Gaylord (the famous Olympic men’s gymnist from the 80s), but it was while watching a movie staring Mitch Gaylord that Kevin and I decided we liked the name, Mitch/Mitchell…although we chose to spell it with one “l” at the end.  Mitchel’s middle name, Lee, is a family history name, of sorts.  Being that Kevin is from Louisiana, and that I was/am a huge Civil War history buff, Robert E. Lee inspired Mitch’s middle name.  So, no…Mitch isn’t named after someone I know or knew personally…just two people from our family’s history!  Ha ha!

My third child and second son, Trent…yes!  He is named for someone I knew!  Actually, he’s not named after that person, the way Sandy the Younger is named after Sandy the Elder…but when I was expecting Trent, Kevin remembered that another men’s Olympic medalist named, Trent Dimas, was a patient at the dentist’s office I worked at when we were first married!  We thought it would be fun to have two names inspired by two Olympians…one we know of, and one I actually knew!  Trent’s middle name, Adair, however, IS the surname of one of my Cherokee ancestors, Sarah Ann Adair.  So Trent does derive his middle name from someone in particular…though I never met her…at least I didn’t in this life.  🙂

Question #3:  I love the new cover art your books are getting-who did that art/photography?

My Answer:  Well, most of the actual photographs are stock photographs.  However, my daughter, Sandy, is an incredible photographer and designer!  And she’s the one that has been designing my covers by manipulating stock photographs or her own photographs since about mid-2012!  She totally understands my visions of what I want my covers to be, and just runs with it!  It’s awesome, because about 99.9% of the time, she hits the nail on the head with the first try!

Second Card Question:

Question #1:  What is your favorite character you’ve created?

My Answer:  Holy smokes!  ONE favorite?!?!  I can’t even begin to think that there’s only ONE favorite!  Yikes!  And as I took a few minutes to look over my books and think very seriously about this questions…I really cannot choose a favorite…at least a favorite main character!  I’m so sorry!  I CAN say this, however…that my favorite, if you will, secondary character, is totally Carl Harbine from Love Me!  That dude STILL cracks me up, because he is still sooooo vivid in my mind!  He cracked me up out loud a couple of times when I was writing his dialogue, as well.  So although I can not name a favorite main character that I’ve created, I’ve got to say that Carl Harbine is my favorite secondary character to date.  🙂

Question #2:  Do you ever find yourself writing friends/family into characters?  Examples?

My Answer:  Oh, absolutely!  Every main character I’ve ever written has aspects of people I know, or have known, that inspire me!  Of course, Kevin is my predominant inspiration for heroes.  In fact, many, many fun or romantic dialogue lines come directly from him!  My own dad, grandpa, uncles, etc. add a lot to male characters as well.  For example, when Brevan gets run over by the plow in The Heavenly Surrender…that actually happened to my grandpa when he was about 12.  Trader Donavon’s peppermint obsession, is directly inspired from Kevin’s!  Heroines are also inspired by real life people.  Other than my own life experience (probably the main inspiration in most cases), my mom, my grandmothers, aunt, my best friends throughout life (i.e. Sandy, Bobbie, Amy, Gina, Karen, Barbara, Dixie, Sheri, etc.) and my daughter and daughters-in-laws have all contributed to characteristics or life-experiences of my female characters.  An example of one real-life friend inspiration, would be the when Reb Mitchell in The Touch of Sage is found (as a child of course) licking his cat’s newly birthed kittens.  That story was an actual life event of one of my good friends (who shall remain nameless, for obvious reasons!).   I seriously could write a book just enumerating the instances in my books that really happened or inspired me toward a character or something that happens in a book!

Question #3:  Would you ever consider writing something other than romance?  What is it about romance that caught your interest initially?

ClintMy Answer:  Hmmm…children’s or YA books.  I’d actually love to do both of those.  But beyond that, and personal projects like personal histories of relatives and ancestors, no.  And I think it is probably because I was literally BORN romantic!  My first crush (and I remember it vividly, believe it or not), was on a friend of my parents’s, Clint (see photo to left-late 60s or early 70s…and photo down and to the right is Clint now…he ages well, right?).  He and his beautiful wife, Frankie (who used to play Barbies with me when I was older, and I LOVED her for that), were often around when I was really, really little…I’m talking like 1-3 years old…and I remember, thinking he was soooo handsome and wanting to kiss him all the time…which, from what I hear, he kindly allowed me to do!  He even bought me my first saddle for my 2nd birthday!  It was probably when he left for Vietnam (tho’ I’m not sure), or when our family moved to Idaho when I
clintrockswas 3 years old, that I fell head over heels in love with Huckleberry Finn (introduced to him via a book my mother read to me).  And although I had one other crush I can remember between the ages of 3 and 7,  (in first grade) on a boy named Benny (also a hottie), it was Huckleberry I loved and who was my imaginary friend until I was about seven.  So you see, romance is in my soul!  I was born with the desire to see everyone in love and thinking everything should be romantic in some regard!  So you see, romance caught my interest very, very early on…and I’m afraid I can’t explain it beyond that!  I hope that’s not a disappointment to you. clint and frankie(AND here’s one more picture (below) of my beloved Clint and Frankie! They were such huge influences in my young life…and my teenage life…my life period!  I love them FOREVER!)


Third Card Question:

Question #1:  Do you ever write inside jokes into any of your books?  (Kind of as a joke waiting to see if the person will recognize it…)

My Answer:  Absolutely!  Assuming you’re familiar with the reason every one of my heroes takes off his shirt at some point in every one of my books, and that you know THAT was a secret, or personal joke or tribute to a group of special friends…I’ll share this one, as well:  In Shackles of Honor, there are 6 swans on the lake that Cassidy lingers in watching.  Mason actually writes a poem or some prose or something about watching her watch the swans I think.  Well, those 6 swans were part of that book, simply as a representation to 5 friends of mine.  When we all moved from Albuquerque to various places, we would circulate a care package between us that everyone would add info and/or photos to as updates on what was going on in our lives.  We called it, the swan package…because we laughingly referred to ourselves as The Six Sultry Swans (a corny name I came up with at some point).  So, the six swans in Shackles of Honor, are a tribute to our shared friendship.  🙂  

Question #2:  Have you ever used a pen name?

My Answer:  Ha ha ha!  Funny, funny question!  Yes!  But only for my last name.  My real first and middle name is Marcia Lynn.  But McClure is the married last name of my cherished friend, Sandy!  I chose it as a tribute to her, because she was not only such a loyal friend, but the one who always read my books first…before anybody else…for years and years and years!  I’ve always wanted to use Lolita C’De Baca as a pen name!  But Kevin thinks it’s silly!  I still might do it, though!  Because I like it!  Doesn’t it just roll off your tongue…Lolita C’De Baca?  I love it!

And now it’s contest time!!!!  The last blog contest was for an awesome coloring book for grown ups, and colored pencils!  Marian Brimming…you won!  Let me know (via e-mail at if you’d rather have like a mermaid coloring book or something since Halloween is so far behind us at this point, okay?

THSPB-Web SizeNow for this blog’s contest…referencing card 2, question #1…who is YOUR favorite character I’ve ever created and why?  Leave a comment on my blog and I’ll plop your name in my hat and draw a winner when I blog with more answers to more questions. The winner will receive…wait for it…a copy of The Tenth Anniversary Collector’s Edition of The Heavenly Surrender!  Yep!  We still have a few on hand!  So if you’ve always wanted one, here’s your chance!  I’m going to blog in a week or so, and I’ll announce the winner then, okay?  Meanwhile, thanks for being sooooo wonderful to me, for reading my books, and caring enough to write some questions on some index cards for me to answer!  🙂

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41 Responses to Answers to YOUR Questions-#2

  1. Michelle Harden says:

    Ugh, such a hard question to answer! The first book of yours I ever read was Kissing Cousins so I LOVE Swaggert! But Lochlan is so dreamy and funny… plus the two for the price of one thing, I mean, come on, that’s like…HOT! HA HA.

  2. Christina Smith says:

    My favorite character you’ve ever created would have to be Coquette de Bellamont from The Whispered Kiss. I love her personality, her passion for life and her happiness with the simple things. It was one of the first books I ever read by you and is now my absolute favorite!!

  3. Astasia says:

    Hmmm, my absolute favorite book remains Shackles of Honor. That being said, I just named my son Lochlan Mason, so that should tell you a couple of the characters I liked best!

  4. Rebecca Coziah says:

    Oh, no contest it’s got to be lochlan. I’ve always loved the romance connected with highwayman. And a man with an accent makes me totally melt.

  5. Astasia says:

    I forgot the why…probably because they do what they feel is right no matter what anyone or society thinks and they take care of the people that they love. Also Brevan is awesome too 😛

  6. Tara Jolly says:

    Vaden Valmont is my favorite, although I can’t articulate why. I also love the convalescing guy who constantly refers to the “candy stripper” (striper) girl. ?

  7. Tori says:

    Capt. Navarrone!! I even quoted him in a talk I gave at church. I love all the Cowboys, but I love that this was so different. He was so witty and the way he cared about his mom and sister… LOVE! & he was ready and willing to die for Cristabel.

  8. Marie V. says:

    I just love Slater from, ‘Weathered Too Young.’ He has such a hard exterior on the outside for everyone to see but inside he is a big, loving teddy bear. His name just rolls off your tongue too. And who couldn’t possibly be not good looking with a name like Slater. And Lark is also a perfect name to go along side with Slater! Now, I’m going to reread that book!

  9. Jaime Comer says:

    So many characters to choose from! I have to say my favorites would be Brevan and Geneiva because I love how they interact with each other and I am just in love with the family dynamic that is in the book. For a more modern couple, I would have to say Cozy and Jesse…I love the atmosphere that those two bring and how they were flirtatiously friends and fell in love!

  10. Molly Jackson says:

    Ransom….Ransom….Ransom!!!! MMMM how I love me some Ransom Lake. I love the part where he takes her into the alley, taking her gloves and things. It makes me so happy. I’ve let all my friends know that I’ve claimed that name for my first boy (hope you don’t mind Marcia). I have gone through three copies of that book. Lol all for Ransom Lake!!

  11. Jennifer says:

    Coquette de Bellamont and Ransom Lake. It’s too hard to choose just one!

  12. Valerie Morris says:

    Just wanted to tell you that my son Daniel’s middle name is also Adair. He is named after his great grandmother Beatrice Adair.

  13. Melissa Hansen says:

    Sage Willows. It was the first book of yours I ever read. And I remember just loving how she was more concerned with her sisters’ happiness than her own…and then she got her own fairytale ending!

  14. Megan V. says:

    Mason Carlisle! He was so strong, passionate, and a total hunk. Plus I feel that he helped Cassidy be a better person, and come into her own a bit.

  15. Laura Wright says:

    Oh man! I fall in love with the main guy in every single one of your books! Brevan was the first, can’t beat handsome Ransom, and I get a little heated over Jackson McCall! But, absolute favorite character has to be Vaden Valmont, hands down! I love her undying optimism, her bright, happy nature, her courage – I mean seriously, when she shaves off his beard while he is unconscious!!! i think I see some of myself in Vaden and that makes me feel like I’m sort of an ok person, ya know? She just makes me feel good about myself, even down to my love of apples and all things Autumn. Love so many!

  16. Liz says:

    My favorite character of yours is Swaggart Moretti because he is gorgeous and he cooks!

  17. Meghan says:

    Loch! The first book I read was Highwayman of Tanglewood and I will forever love Loch! He is the perfect man.

  18. Abby Campbell says:

    oh man! SO many characters that I love! I love thorton! born for thortons sake is a great book! just feeds my obsession of lockets! If I had to pick a favorite book hero though it is a dead three way tie with desert fire’s jackson, ryder from dusty britches, and brevan from heavenly surrender! I just love your books. Always keep writing!! 🙂

  19. Lynette says:

    I really like Genieva and how she pushes Brevan’s buttons. I probably like those two because Heavenly Surrender was my first Marcia McClure book, and it has remained my favorite.

  20. Sandi wolfley says:

    Dusty!!because I relate to her she got hurt and shut down and it was all just protect her heart. And that caused pain to her family and people she didn’t mean to, but eventually she was able to break down the wall she put up for protection. This is something very hard to do

  21. Lena Mattice says:

    It is so hard to pick that one main character from your books. I truly love them all for many different reasons. I will choose a character that I love just because she acts our her part and is what she is. She doesn’t change for anything. She wants to be loved for who she is and she loves unconditionally everyone that crosses her path. She even gives up true love so he can live out his true love. In the end she gets her true love all for waiting. I love Raynetta McCarthy for being a spit fire and having selfless acts.

  22. Britney Gallup says:

    My favorite character is Genieva! She is a little ball of feistiness when she wants to be! I love when she dumps the cake batter on Breven’s head!

  23. Morgan Jenkins says:

    I have always loved Vance from Kiss in the Dark. That book is must favorite because I connect with it on so many levels. I love Vance because he is so dreamy of course, but also because he is real and down to earth. He’s not conceited or thinks he’s high and mighty. He’s just a guy. And he protects everyone he loves or anyone he feels needs protection and support and any kind of help. Like when Boston needed to move out, he stood up to Stephanie when she went crazy and got Boston out. He love his sister more than anything and I think that’s a great relationship to have. I also love Boston because I connect to her on another level. She reminds me of myself and she believes in being happy and optimistic about her situations and whatever life throws her way. I’m that same way; I always am optimistic even when I’m angry, sad, grumpy, etc. Boston is the friend to have who will do her best to bring you up to goodness and happiness.

    I love your books. They always make me happy and feel so good! Thanks you for sending me into the world of fiction where anything can happen?

  24. Krystle says:

    I can’t pick a favorite!!! But I can pick a favorite name! Hahaha my second son is Brockton! Took awhile to get my husband on board with it but I won in the end and now I have my very own Brockton who will one day inspire some girl to amazing day dreams lol. So thank you for all of your characters and especially the name Brockton!

  25. Susan Wolfley says:

    How do I choose? After much thought I had to go a different route this is not one of those hunky men but it is Tempest Taffee such a wonderful strong women who raised her two daughters alone. She was so strong. The kind of women I would want to be if ever in that situation! ( but of coarse me loving and dreaming of the beach and ocean…..after living in very cold winters in Wyoming just helped this be one of my manyfavorite books of yours!)

  26. Caroline Sue Skoubye says:

    Oh man!!! Just one!?! *sigh* It changes for me every couple of years, but right now I’m in love with Heathro with his sparkly gold tooth!!! Who wouldn’t want to kiss that, right!?! 😀

  27. Erin Kasper says:

    I think I finally picked one! Valynn is probably my all time favorite (though honestly that is subject to change…they are all so wonderful!) She is kinda my spirit Sister. I see so much of me in her and I love it!

  28. Aimee says:

    If I could take Lochlan’s humor and charismatic personality and combine it with Mason’s brooding and kissable kissiness while I am dressed in a red dress hanging from a bookshelf in a library I would be a happy camper!

  29. Christine Jensen says:

    Oh gosh, that’s so hard!! I’ll probably have to say Vaden Valmomt. She is just so fun and impulsive, but caring. I love so many, buy she was also one of the first of yours that I read, so there is a bit of sentimentality there too!

  30. Nicole Bender says:

    Brevan and Ransom! They are both such fabulously manly men!!

  31. Shona Larsen says:

    I loved the relationship of Genieva and Brevan’s. I loved the way Brevan had so much fun teasing the life out of Genieva’s family. The tension between the two was so much fun from the moment they set eyes on each other and realized who each other was. Loved it!
    I also love Mason and his way of teasing. I’d love some kind of sequel to Shackles of Honor

  32. kylee bartholomew says:

    I’d have to say a duo dynamic that I LOVE would be awarded to Tom/Slater Evans. They are the best comical duo and they make me laugh out loud every time I read their banter. I always have the biggest grin on my face while reading. :D:D

  33. McKinley Knox says:

    My absolute favorite character would have to be Cherry Ray. She is so spunky and happy. She is also hilarious. My favourite scene would have to be when they first meet. If I remember correctly, he was bathing in the pond or something and she was going to get something or whatnot, then they had this race and of course, he ended up dragging her home by her ear to her dad. It was definitely hilarious.

  34. Dannette Clayson says:

    Has to be Ransom. It’s my go to book when I just need a feel good moment. But there are soooo many others. I love that I can just pick up any of your books and know I will LOVE the characters. Thank You!

  35. Amy Cook says:

    Kizzy…I just LOVE that name & everything about her!!!

  36. Marena Nunez says:

    UGH! Just one!!!! Seriously that is an impossibility 😉 However I have to go with Broderick. He is quiet and brooding just like my Love and they share a military career as well. This was the first book I ready of yours and in fact had to buy a kindle to do it because you weren’t printing yet.

  37. Hallie Myers says:

    Ok this is extremely hard to answer…..Michael McCall as of this moment….he he he…probably cause it’s the book I’ve just finished re-reading.
    I love his playful nature and always giggle…the toothpick ?.

  38. Jasmine H says:

    I love Sage from Touch of Sage. She is by far one of my favorite characters. I love her relationship with the widows and how she cares for them. When I first read this book I was working in an Assisted Living and I connected to her so fast. But then I also connected with Sayler in Daydreams. I just love all your characters!!

  39. Kim Martin says:

    My favorite is Ransom. It is also my favorite book of yours as well. I think I just love the story so much that it just makes me love characters as well.

    But I am currently reading A Bargained For Bride and I am really liking Boone so far.

  40. Shauna says:

    I was reading these comments and realizing that I absolutely love all of your characters and reading your books has inspired me to write some of my own stories. I love how sweet and hilarious they always are and have convinced my daughters to read them and they have read them all, some many times. I turn to your books when I need something light and fun and it seems I need that all the time. I think I’ve read most of your books 10+ times. I love the characters and love the names you use.

  41. Laura Suzanne says:

    100% Broderick, I’ve read his and Monet’s story countless times! It is my favourite book in the entire world and I even illustrated their story in an assignment I had for university (in which we had to rewrite and illustrate a children’s book based on our favourite book) ! I got a 1st for it and inspired loads of people to read your original! But no one will love Broderick like I do. I want the man I marry to be like him and I’ll accept nothing less ?

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