Interview with Cathy Yardley

March 28, 2012

Today I have the privilege of interviewing Cathy Yardley, author of several romance and chick-lit novels in a variety of sub-genres including contemporary, erotic and romantic comedy. Her most recent titles, published by the Harlequin Blaze line, are Scott, Lincoln and Finn, the three books that comprise The Player's Club Trilogy

Cathy Yardley

Welcome to The Hope Chest Reviews, Cathy.

1. How did you get started writing?

I'd played around with manuscripts from the time I was in grade school, but it always felt like play, nothing serious, certainly nothing I'd get published. It wasn't until I joined the RWA (after college, thinking I'd become a publicist - I couldn't even admit I was a writer to myself then!) that I started seriously considering writing full novels and possibly submitting them.

2. Which authors have inspired you the most and in what ways?

I'm inspired by J.K. Rowling's sheer genius of imagination; by Marian Keyes' ability to make even the most desperate and wrenching emotional turmoil into comic gold (while still making you feel the full gamut of emotions); Jennifer Crusie's voice and ability to cheer me up no matter what; Nora Roberts/J.D. Robb's almost effortless ability to create characters I adore in settings I believe.

3. Your son sounds like a little comedian who really keeps you on your toes. What's your favorite part of being a mom?

The Boy definitely keeps me running, that's for sure - and he's truly hysterical, especially when he doesn't mean to be. My favorite part of being a Mom is seeing him in his bizarre, awesome, unapologetic splendor.

4. How do you balance your writing with family time?

Right now, I have designated Boy Time daily, from 11:30 to 2:00, where we do stuff that he likes to do. I have discovered I am better with building and drawing than I am at playing cars (which I have to admit, I loathe) and playing Super Mario Bros. Otherwise, I have work blocks in the morning, editing in the afternoon, and I write for a bit after he goes to bed. Then some husband time. As long as I block out the containers in the morning and make sure I'm hitting the important stuff, it generally works.

5. As the mother of a budding manga artist, I'm wondering what was the inspiration for your chick-lit book, Turning Japanese and its manga artist heroine?

Yay! The world needs more manga! :-) I was a geek in high school; I collected the Akira comic series, and Neil Gaiman's Sandman series (which I still think is absolutely brilliant, though not manga.) I watched anime like BlueSeed and things throughout college, and I used to go to the Comic Con in San Diego. I just loved that culture. Also, I'm half Vietnamese, half Irish-American. I wanted to write a novel about being Hapa, or half-Asian. I've found it brings its own challenges, and using the Japanese culture as a backdrop helped me explore that.

The Player's Club: Scott

6. In your new Player's Club series, Lincoln and Finn, the founders of the club, have a wonderful philosophy of living life without regrets and helping their members become more confident people. They could just as easily have been adrenaline junkies looking for their next "fix," so what influenced you to give them this deeper vision for the club?

I think that adrenaline addiction, like any addiction, winds up being empty and ultimately draining, while helping other people and growing as a person is nurturing. I think Finn was the closest to simply being an adrenaline junkie, and I hope in his book the difference is really illustrated. Besides, hot, self-actualized guys? YUM.:-)

7. The characters in the Player's Club can often be found doing crazy things like jumping out of perfectly good airplanes or being chased by bulls.:-) What's the most daring thing you've ever done?

Actually, I did the three-day vision quest in the Mojave desert when I turned thirty - that's what I based Scott's challenge on. (Only mine was in winter, oy.) That's probably been the most daring, being out by myself in the deep desert for three days and nights!

8. I loved the geeky characters in the Player's Club and was excited to find out that you consider yourself a geek girl (me too;-)). What is the geekiest thing you've ever done?

Oh, my - there's a buffet of choices on that one! I was a member of the SCA (Society of Creative Anachronism, sort of the Medieval version of RenFaire except it's all the time.) Dressing up as a medieval lady and partying in a camp for a weekend was pretty geeky. I also called in sick to work to watch Lord of the Rings when it came out in theaters... and I saw it twice in one day. Yup. Six hours.

 The Player's Club: Lincoln

9. Which one of the Player's Club characters is the most like you?

Probably Amanda, or Scott. That geek-turned-badass. :-D

The Player's Club: Finn

10. I can't resist asking the Player's Club "million-dollar" question: If you knew you had only one month to live and had virtually unlimited resources, what three things would you want to do?

I'd record a bunch of things for my son, and write him a bunch of letters. That'd be the first thing on my list. This is geeky, but I'd also probably sketch out the outlines of the books I've got floating around in my head, ones I'd hate to just take to the grave, and beg authors I know and love to write them. Finally, I think I'd go eat at every fantastic restaurant I've ever wanted to: Alice Waters' Chez Panisse, French Laundry, Woodfire Grill in Atlanta, Volt... just go nuts.

11. What are you currently working on?

I'm finishing up an urban fantasy that comes out in December, about a temp who inadvertently signs her soul to her boss, and then has to help him kill thirteen people to get it back. Strangely, it's a comedy. :-) It's called Temping Is Hell, and the series is called Necessary Evil.

12. Here's a fun question to wrap up: I see that you are a fan of J. R. Ward's Black Dagger Brotherhood (me too, again;-)). Who is your favorite brother?

Hmmm. Probably Butch. I loved his dynamic with V, and their conversation with the potato launcher still cracks me up.

Thank you so much for visiting with The Hope Chest Reviews today, Cathy. It's been a delight having you, and we wish you all the best.

Thank you for having me!

Visit Cathy on the Web

 Cathy's Website

Rock Your Writing

 Read our reviews of The Player's Club Trilogy.