ABOUT

AMY LEIGH HARDEN

Amy Leigh Harden was born and raised in Kansas City, Missouri. She is an author of historical and romantic suspense novels.  Amy Leigh has a passion for dinners with friends, road trips on two lane highways, and all things much older than herself. 

By the time Amy Leigh was old enough to hold a crayon she was scribbling words on sheets of paper and calling them stories. Her early writings received glowing reviews from parents and grandparents. By the time she was a teenager her stories morphed from children going on adventures to people finding their one true love – while going on adventures. She blames falling in love with writing romance on a now long-lost Nancy Drew/Hardy Boys mystery book.

Amy Leigh is married with two children – all of them unabashed bookworms.

FAQs

What are some fun facts about you?


  • I love classic pinup girl art
  • I'm an adoptive mother
  • My family always takes a train trip while on vacation
  • My grandmother and I participated in a police chase following car thieves




What type of books do you enjoy?


I want a book that keeps me reading until 3 am because I simply must find out who the murderer is or if our couple will get together. Even if I know the couple ends up together, I want that doubt there to keep flipping pages as I anxiously glance at the clock thinking that twenty more minutes awake won’t hurt. If the book also contains a dash of the resilience of humans during a trying period of history then I’ll be the book’s number one fan.




What novel are you working on now?


I'm never at a loss for characters or plot ideas and have at least three projects going at once. My difficulty is deciding what I want to focus on next. Right now, I’m researching New York City crime rates in the 1980’s with vague ideas of using it as the backdrop of a romance. It would be my most contemporary project to date.




How long have you been writing?


Tucked in a dusty corner of my parents’ attic, hopefully never to be discovered, is a box filled with floppy disks containing novels I wrote in high school. In college I ventured into the territory of unlikely fanfiction shipping (Draco/Hermione) and awkward 90’s crossovers (X-Files/ER). As an adult I didn't get serious about writing until about ten years ago when my husband suggested I try to get a book published, or at the very least, let him read one of them.




What is your writing process like?


I'm an over-writer so my first drafts are monstrous with fifteen subplots and enough characters to make Charles Dickens blush. Once I finish the first draft, I put it away for a few months. When I reopen the file, I immediately chop off the first and last chapter. The first chapter is always background information and my last chapter is written for me. It tends to be a scene unrelated to the story line showing the characters having a nice moment ten or twenty years later -- at their child’s wedding or holding a grandchild. I like the reassurance that even after the official “happily ever after” my characters continue to have a happy life.




Do you always know the whole story, including the ending, when you begin?


I always know how my books will begin and end. I wish I knew what was going to happen in the middle--that part I struggle with. My outlines generally have an infuriating line or two like "Someone is angry. Why? End scene with kissing.” or “What if she’s the blackmailer? That’s probably too stupid. Add a clever plot twist here”.




Do you have a favorite character in your own novels or novellas?


I was blessed with amazing grandparents as a child so the grandmother or grandfather in the story always has a special place in my heart.





 
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