Friday, August 8, 2014

Author Highlight: Mya O'Malley

          Today I’m delighted to introduce first time author Mya O’Malley. Mya was born and raised in the suburbs of New York City, where she currently lives with a very full house consisting of her husband, daughter and three stepdaughters, as well as two boxers and a ragdoll cat. She works as a special education teacher and spends her free time reading just about anything she can get her hands on. Mya likes to travel (like me!) and has visited several Caribbean Islands, Mexico and Costa Rica. Her first book, At First Sight, was released by Astraea Press this week.

PK: What do you do when you're not writing?
MO: I am a special education teacher, I love my job working with elementary age students. I keep busy at home with my beautiful daughter and three stepdaughters, as well as two dogs (both boxers) and a cat. I love to travel, read, go to the movies and enjoy a night out with my husband and friends.

PK: We have a lot in common – I enjoy teaching and traveling too! What life experiences helped you become an author?
MO: I’ve always loved to read and write since I was a small child. I remember writing short stories for my grandmother. Years later I found out that she had saved every single one. I enjoy sharing those stories with my students.

PK: That’s so sweet! How did you choose the genre you write in?
MO: I guess you could say that I’m a romantic at heart, so romance is something I really enjoy writing about. I get wrapped up in my characters and visualize the story as I’m writing. My characters stay with me long after my book is finished.

PK: It’s hard to let go of characters you’ve lived with, so to speak, for so long. What was your favorite chapter (or scene) to write and why?
MO: I don’t want to give away the ending, but I’d say the last scene in the book was one of my favorites to write. I have traveled to the location/setting of the last chapter so it brought back some great memories, plus it was pretty romantic.

PK: It’s always fun to write about places that had an impact on you. Do you have any advice to give to aspiring writers?
MO: I would tell other writers to never give up on their dream. Somebody once said that a writer always writes, so if you don’t succeed with your first or second book, keep going. It’s also helpful to have a critique group, friends, family or others pre-read your work before submitting to give you some constructive criticism.

PK: Great advice. Is there anything you find particularly challenging in your writing?
MO: Since I’m a teacher, it’s wonderful to have the summers off. I take full advantage of my time off, but it is difficult to carve out time to write during the school year.

PK: I can certainly relate to busy school year schedules, especially with kids in the house!

Here’s the BLURB for At First Sight:

          Modern love can be a headache. Just ask Annie Morgan, who, recently divorced, finds herself in the middle of the proverbial online dating jungle. Making a deal with her best friend, Annie agrees to go out on exactly five online dates out of seventy-six potential suitors.

          Shane Nicholls was jaded, he had his heart broken and never got over the hurt. Now, convinced that all women are trouble, he avoids drama at any cost. Funny thing is, drama seems to find Shane around every corner.
          Can Annie, a romantic at heart, find love online or will she find love at first sight the old-fashioned way, by awkward, chance meetings with Shane Nicholls? Through a number of obstacles and heartache, Annie and Shane find that love at first sight really does exist if you truly believe.

Here’s an EXCERPT:

          Johnny’s was packed. Standing on line to place her order, Annie took in her surroundings. Just as the owner, Johnny, was coming over to take her order, something caught Annie’s eye. The guy near the window, he seemed familiar somehow. Where had she seen him before? He was eating dinner with a pretty brunette. He lifted his head to look at Annie as their eyes locked. On no! It was the guy from the mall, the one she bumped into. She quickly spun around, knocking right into the waitress who was carrying a tray of soft drinks.
          Soda soaked her shirt and dripped onto the floor. The waitress was clearly annoyed and appeared like she would have loved to tell Annie off. Instead she rolled her eyes and ran to get a towel. If Annie thought she was embarrassed before, it was nothing compared to how she felt now. Every eye in the place was on her, including the guy from the mall. Helpless to do anything else, she grabbed some napkins and bent down to sop up some of the mess.
          “It seems you have a knack for causing a scene everywhere you go.” It was his voice. The voice that filled her head with inappropriate thoughts, with longing. What was she thinking? Did she dare look up? His gaze was a magnet, forcing her to meet his eyes.
          His eyes were a warmer brown than she had remembered, drawing her in.
          “I’m joking. Here, let me help you with that.” He grabbed the napkins from her hand. The heat between them jolted her back. She moved quickly, surprised he could evoke such a reaction from her. Nobody had ever made her feel so exposed before. What was going on here? Annie felt foolish.
          “I’m Shane. Shane Nicholls.” He extended his hand to her. They must have appeared to be quite the sight, bending over to clean up the mess while shaking hands.
          “Annie.” Annie remembered her new rules of safety in the dating world. One of them was she would not reveal her last name or any other personal information until she was sure the guy wasn’t a stalker or anything.
          “Annie. It suits you, I like it.” Annie had almost forgot about the woman waiting for Shane at the table near the window. She glanced over and took in a tight-lipped woman. It hit Annie that this woman was not the same stunning woman from the mall. Hmm, she had met his type before. This guy had “player” written all over him. She quickly brushed herself off and excused herself.
          “Hey, Annie. Wait.” He reached for her hand. Annie forgot all about placing her order and made a beeline for the door. She didn’t look back. Well, Annie figured, it looked like it would be Chinese food tonight.

At First Sight is available at Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Smashwords, Kobo, and other ebook outlets.

Mya can be found at her website and on Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest.

Here's the trailer for At First Sight:


  1. Thanks for hosting me on your blog, Patricia, it's great to be here.

    1. It's a pleasure having you here! Your book sounds wonderful.

  2. Thanks Patricia. I'm excited about my first release. There's nothing like seeing your book out for publication the first time!