I was scanning through Instagram a little bit ago and thinking about how I haven't updated my Author Spotlight in a long while when I came across Mia Hentzelman's Instagram page and found that I really enjoyed her spark! I knew that I needed to know more about her and her books and she was wonderful enough to agree to an interview! Please enjoy learning more about her writing process, her favorite horror movies, and who she'd cast in the roles of her favorite characters!
Romantically Inclined Reviews: First off, let's get the important question out of the way. Your website says that you're a horror movie lover. I am also a lover of horror movies, willing to watch the best of the best and the absolute worst of the worst (we're talking Jason in Space level bad). What is your all-time favorite horror movie?
Mia Heintzelman: Ooh, this is one of my absolute favorite topics. Horror movies are indeed my jam. My household is full of scarers, ages 7-41, hopping out from dark corners. Lol. I'm going to agree with you that Jason X was the worst of the worst. The best of the best is a little harder to pin down. In recent days, it would be something by Blumhouse like Insidious or Sinister, but if I'm going for all-time best, still gets me (and I may be still traumatized from childhood), still looking over my shoulder at the music alone...It has to be the original Halloween. Between Jamie Lee Curtis, Dr. Loomis, and creepy stalking Michael, it still just does it for me. I could go on, but there are other questions. We should have a discussion on only this one day.
Romantically Inclined Reviews: I do not disagree about the OG Halloween movie. I'll rewatch it any day! My ultimate this movie messed me up movie would be Nightmare on Elm Street. Saw it way too young and have been permanently scarred. Anyways, moving on to more on-topic questions, when and how did you get started writing romance novels?
Mia Heintzelman: My romance writing career started on a winding road. I began writing and won an award in the third grade before getting send on a LONG detour when an uncle promptly told me writing was a horrible, non-paying career. Fast-forward to college when I was yearning for real love myself (I'm a hopeless romantic). I started writing my own happy endings--which were, a bit steamier.
Romantically Inclined Reviews: What character have you written that you find reminds you most of yourself? Do you ever base your characters on people you know in real life?
Mia Heintzelman: Every female character I've written has a few dashes of me in them. Strong women, book lovers, hopeless romantics with heartbreak under their stylish belts, and some spice. Most recently, Riley Mills from Mingle All The Way reminds me of me. She's goal-oriented, a warrior for women, and knows a hot Irish guy (my husband is half-Irish) when she sees one.
Romantically Inclined Reviews: As someone with Irish blood, I have to say that there's something irresistible about a hot dude with a sexy Irish accent. Speaking of Mingle All The Way, you have three holiday novellas, so you must love the holiday season. What's your favorite part about creating a romance set during the holiday season?
Miz Heintzelman: It's the happiest time with the person who makes you happiest. Throw in some mistletoe, hot chocolate, ugly sweaters, and cookies...It's a recipe for sweet, steamy, gooey love. Plus, if they're together with this person during such an important time, the seriousness is implied and it makes the HEA so much stronger.
Romantically Inclined Reviews: I never thought about how the seriousness of being with someone during the holiday seasons can amplify the importance of the relationship, but it's very true! Out of curiosity, if you could turn any one of your books into a movie, which would you choose and who would you cast as the main characters?
Mia Heintzelman: Ooh... I have all the answers, but this is still a hard one because I imagine all of my books as movies. It's sort of a hazard of being a book and movie lover. So, I'm going to choose my novel Mixed Emotions which is a brother's best friend, roommates to lovers, diverse romance. Zora Monroe would be Nia Long and Michael Kennedy would be Lucien Laviscount, who is so steaming hot.
For a novella, I'm going with both Mingle All the Way and Married & Bright since they have shared characters. I could easily see these on Hallmark or Netflix now. Riley Mills is a model (no clue what her name is but I shared a picture on Instagram!), Chase Campbell is Gwilym Pugh (hot, also see my Instagram for a picture of him!), Bianca is the popstar Vanessa Bryant, and Jaden Brooks is Tom Hardy.
Lol, can you tell I've given this so much thought!
Romantically Inclined Reviews: I am obviously watching all the wrong movies because I don't recognize a single name! But I know what I'll be googling today. And since you're an author I'll assume you, like all authors, have a current work-in-progress. What inspired your current WIP? What's your ideal writing environment?
Mia Heintzelman: I do. I always do. I'm writing a neighbors-to-enemies-to-lovers romance right now. The heroine is Keira, Riley's younger sister from Mingle All The Way. The funny part is I was supposed to be writing something else, but then NaNoWriMo hit and I just really wanted to write something extra funny about someone who stress-bakes and falls for her neighbor. She's a freelance writer with a cute dog and he's an Associate English Professor on tenure track who just bought a home. They deal with a whole lot of shit--the K9 variety.
My ideal writing environment is quiet with a comfortable chair and a cup of coffee and my craft books. I really miss writing at Starbucks and different cafes.
Romantically Inclined Reviews: What are all these writers doing without their coffee shops these days? Your upcoming book, It's Got A Ring To It, releases in 2021. Can you tell us about it and what else your readers maybe have to look foward to?
Mia Heintzelman: It's Got A Ring To It is actually going to be a re-release with a new cover, extended plot, and a complete revision. I'm revamping the whole thing and adding some pizzazz to it. It's a second chance romance with sister weddings and a Las Vegas backdrop.
My 2021 plan is to release quarterly. First quarter, the second book in the Wastelands Academy series (dark bully romance). Second quarter, Mixed Drinks (turning my serial into a full novel), the first six episodes are available to my newsletter subscribers. Third quarter, IGARTI. Fourth quarter, I already have another holiday romance planned. Plus, I'm submitting two books to agents. So...I've got my work cut out for me!
To connect with author Mia Heintzelman, check out her: