Allie McCormack | Discover Books & Novels on CraveBooks

#Followers: 5

Allie McCormack

Member Since: 11/2023


Allie McCormack is a disabled U.S. military veteran, now pursuing her life-long dream of being a writer. Allie has traveled quite a bit and lived many places all over the U.S., as well as a year in Cairo, Egypt as an exchange student, and a year in Saudi Arabia under contract to a hospital in Riyadh. Allie now lives in wine country in beautiful southern California with her family and two rescue cats. Allie says: "A writer is who and what I am... a romance writer. I write what I know, and what I know is romance. Dozens of story lines and literally hundreds of characters live and breathe within the not-so-narrow confines of my imagination, and it is my joy and privilege to bring them to life, to share them with others by writing their stories."

Tell us a little bit about yourself, your hobbies and interests.

I've been a bit of a collector of "experiences." When I was little, my grandmother took me to an airing of Lawrence of Arabia, which impressed me so much I always wanted to go to the Middle East. I got my chance in college, when I was able to spend a year in Cairo, Egypt as an exchange student on their Year Abroad program. A few years later, I spent a year in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, working at a hospital. The language, the culture, the people, the history, the art, the architecture, it just all fascinated me, and I loved my time there. Which accounts for a lot of the arabian cultural influences showing up in my novels, LOL! I've had lots of hobbies along the way, I tend to do one thing obsessively for a few years, then drop it for something else that I do obsessively for a few years. My favorites were painting ceramics... which I actually only stopped because I moved to where there are no ceramics shops... and loom beading. I used to always love coloring, and paint-by-number also, and the recent emergence of adult coloring books just made my creative lil heart chick-a-thump, and I have a dozen adult coloring books, a full set of Tombow dual-tip brush-tip watercolor pens, and a full set of PrismaColor pencils... yes, I'm always prepared to spend a fortune on my hobbies ;) The one thing that has been steady all through my life, however, has been writing... and it's no longer a hobby, but a passion that keeps me hooked in! For other interests, I love collectibles, and have a whole shelf decorative elephants from Bradford Exchange, a couple of Carousel Horses from Lennox, etc. I'm not much on television, but I do love NCIS and FBI, and I get a SUPER charge out of seeing the bad guys get caught! I loved Criminal Minds, too, and the original CSI.

When and why did you start writing books?

I've always been writing. My earliest memory of writing is when I was in 3rd grade (we moved around a lot, so I know it was 3rd grade because we lived in a 2-story brick house in Silver Spring, Maryland), and I remember writing under the covers at night using a flashlight, writing in pencil in a black and white composition notebook my mom brought me. At that point I was writing Bambi (the original novel, not the Disney movie) fanfic, LOL. So, yeah, I've always been writing.

What made you decide to tackle writing as a career?

Writing was always just a hobby, and I never seriously considered actually writing a book... i.e., a whole book, beginning to end. Then I got a free trial on AOL, because I'd just watched You've Got Mail and I wanted to hear my computer tell me "you've got mail" which was an AOL thing. So I got AOL. But then I discovered the writing community there, which was huge! There were writers.... .beginners like me, advanced ones, and published authors! There were classes, and workshops! I'd never been around other writers before, and I dove into the community. I got hooked up with Romance Writers of America and found out about contests... so I signed up for a few contests... and I WON one!!!! And the reward for the winning entry was that it'd be read by a senior acquiring editor at Silhouette. So I contacted her (by phone!) and she knew instant who I was (!!!!!) and wanted the first three chapters. Um. I only had written the first chapter for the contest. So, okay, I told her sure, no problem. And frantically wrote off three chapters. Then she wanted the full manuscript! But I hadn't written the rest of the book, because *everyone* knew you submitted dozens of partials before getting a request for the full manuscript! So then I was in a sweat, writing like crazy to finish the book so I could send it, LOL. And to *finish* your first book, is just.... there are no words.

Which one of your books or characters is your favourite?

When Darkness Falls, the whole trilogy, would be my favorite. and my favorite character is the adorable, fun-loving Djinn, Jacinth. She has her own book, A Gift of Jacinth, but she's a major secondary character in ALL of my Magic of Wishes & Dreams series.

Which one of your books was the hardest to write and stretched you the most as a writer?

When Darkness Falls. I'd never intended to write a historical romance, OR a vampire romance, and yet... here we are. The characters and story showed up in my head and demanded to be written. I'm pretty sure I spent more time doing research than writing. Besides the historical aspect, I was writing about a city built between TWO empires, Persian and Mughal, TWO cultures, Arab and Indian. I pretty much left religion out of the story but the city was built on a major trade route, and of course so the Crusades were ongoing during that time period, so we had the base population of Muslims and Hindu, as well as a Jewish, plus Protestant, Catholic and Orthodox Christianity, so we'd have had mosques, synagogues, temples. And there still was plenty more to work out... city planning, for instance, a monetary system, clothing, food. Then there were the paranormal elements... vampires, shapeshifters, djinn, demons. And I had to work out the political landscape between all these, as Al Khair (the city) was one of tolerance, where everyone coexisted (except the vampires, but there was a truce with those). But... OMG I LOVED writing it!!!!! I was totally caught up in that world, and I have to say, there are times I want to go back there and lose myself, and write more.

Who is your favourite author and book?

uhh... just one??? Okay, favorite childhood: The Secret Garden by Francis Hodgson Burnett. As an adult: The Winning Hand by Nora Roberts.

What book are you reading right now?

Bear Meets Girl by Shelly Laurentston

Where do you get your inspiration for your books?

From the characters in the books I'm writing... they just show up as secondary characters, then start to grow on me, and next thing, they demand their own story! and so it goes.... LOL!

What do you enjoy doing in your spare time?

Spare time? I have spare time???? To be honest, book marketing takes up a HUGE chunk of time, and as a self-published author, it's not something I can simply ignore. However, I always have time to read! I read a LOT... I curretnly have 2,079 books in my Kindle Library, and yes, I've read most of them (lots of them, many times!). I'm currently reading about 20 books a month; that's not counting the ones I throw over my shoulder (i.e. delete from my Kindle) without finishing. I do take time out to watch NCIS, FBI, Criminal Minds, and the Great British Baking Show. Otherwise, I'm not much one for television. In between all the above, I watch cute cat videos on FB. So sue me :P

Do you have any new books in the works?

Yep! I'm currently working on A Witch in Time, the 6th book in my Magic of Wishes & Dreams paranormal romance series, which is also a time travel romance, as the heroine was living in Salem Village in 1692 and is whisked away just in time, to the Hudson Valley in the 21st century!