Backstage with Morgan O’Neill




Grab your All Access pass and come with me! Today’s we’re going backstage with the writing duo of Morgan O’Neill to talk about the debut of their new time travel series – The Thornless Rose is out today! – and get to know these two phenomenal women!






Two authors writing as one, Cary Morgan Frates and Deborah O’Neill Cordes specialize in recreating pivotal moments in history, epic adventure, and romance—with a time travel twist.

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The Thornless Rose, the first book in Morgan O’Neill’s Elizabethan Time Travel series debuts today, and like all Morgan O’Neill books, it’s a must-read!

THE THORNLESS ROSE 1600x2400No one ever knew what really happened to Dr. Jonathan Brandon back in 1945. He simply disappeared from a London pub, leaving behind an unsolved mystery and his fiancée—Anne Howard’s grandmother. Seventy years later, Anne herself is haunted by the strange tale, along with inexplicable hallucinations straight out of Elizabethan England. Including a scarred, handsome man whose deep blue eyes seem to touch her very soul….

Anne wonders if there isn’t something more to the story. Is it even possible that Jonathan disappeared into England’s dark past? And why does Anne keep hearing him whisper her name? Because now she too feels the inexorable pull of the past, not to mention an undeniable attraction for a man she doesn’t even know.

It’s just a matter of time before Anne will step back into history, and face a destiny―and a love―beyond imagining…

Available now at Amazon | Barnes & Noble | iTunes | Kobo


I am just thrilled to pieces to have y’all here today! Welcome Deborah and Cary! First of all, congratulations on the release of The Thornless Rose. It hit my Kindle first thing this morning, and I plan to spend the rest of the day lost in this gorgeous book. Now, let’s get down to the nitty-gritty and have some fun. 🙂

1. How did you make your first dollar?

Deborah- I worked at the vertebrate museum at NorthernArizonaUniversity, skinning and stuffing road kill for display.

Cary- Receptionist in a hair salon (almost the same thing as Deb’s!)  Deb laughed at that one.

2. What is the best gift you’ve ever received?

Deborah- My Westies and Cairn terriers.

Cary- My children.

3. What splurge is well worth it?

Deborah and Cary- Travel

4. What is your fantasy itinerary?

Deborah- Several months in London and the English countryside with my hubster, exploring historical sites and museums, as well as fossil hunting on the southern “JurassicCoast” and taking a metal detector tour to look for ancient treasure. The hubster will get rewarded with Guinness for following me around. 🙂

Cary-England to Italy via France. I would travel the back roads by car, discovering treasures and making friends without a time or dollar limit. And with a wonderful someone, whose name I do not yet know. 🙂

5. What makes you laugh?

Deborah- The Cowbell skit from SNL, with Will Ferrell and Christopher Walken.

Cary- Beer. And silly people who don’t give a damn about appearances.

6. What are your vices?

Deborah- Sneaking chocolate while dieting!

Cary- None. I’m perfect. Oh, wait. Hubris???

7. What makes you mad?

Deborah and Cary- Cruelty toward children or animals.

8. What song instantly puts you in a good mood?

Deborah- The ethereal soundtrack from Gladiator takes me to that special place, where dreams become the written word.  For rock songs, Within Temptation’s “Faster.”

Cary- “Born to be Wild,” by Steppenwolf

9. What is your favorite movie quote?

Deborah- “Father to a murdered son, husband to a murdered wife. And I will have my vengeance, in this life or the next” (Maximus in Gladiator, dramatic perfection).

Cary- “Frankly, my dear, I don’t give a damn” (I always hoped Rhett and I would become an item).

10. What’s the best advice you’ve been given?

Deborah and Cary- Never give up. Never let go of your dreams.

11. You are stuck in an elevator with a rock star; who would you want it to be?

Deborah- John Lennon

Cary- George Harrison

12. Everyone has a superpower; what’s yours?

Deborah- I have an (almost!) photographic memory, which comes in handy for research and continuity in writing.

Cary- Hah! Sorry, no superpowers here. I do try to make people laugh and feel good about themselves, because most people can use the boost.

13. What’s a question you’d like to be asked but no one ever asks? Answer it.

Deborah and Cary- Question: Which would you prefer – a feature length film or a miniseries of The Thornless Rose?  Answer: Yes, please!  😀


Summer or winter?

Deborah- Summer

Cary- Summer

Cake or pie?

Deborah- Pie, Boston Cream

Cary- Neither, hot fudge sundae

Drafting or revising?

Deborah- Revising, since I love to add layers to what I’ve already written.

Cary- Drafting

Cooking or take-away?

Deborah- My hubster is an amazing cook… so cooking, as long as I don’t have to do it. 🙂

Cary- Neither, restaurant with someone wonderful (again, a name would be nice).

Guitarist or lead singer?

Deborah- Lead singer

Cary- Guitarist

Coffee or tea?

Deborah- Tea

Cary- Coffee

Plotter or pantser?

Deborah- Used to be a pantser, but now I’m doing both out of necessity.

Cary- Pantser, although I’ve found that a bit of plotting goes a long way toward allowing my inner pantser full rein.

Stubble or clean-shaven? (I’m talking about men here, not your legs! 🙂 )

Deborah- Stubble

Cary- Stubble, baby, stubble

Morning or night?

Deborah- Night

Cary- Morning, or both. I hate wasting daylight.

Deborah and Cary, thank you both so much for coming backstage today to give us a peek into your lives and share the release day of The Thornless Rose. You’re both welcome back anytime!

Don’t miss Morgan O’Neill’s Medieval Italian Time Travel series: The Other Side of Heaven and Time Enough for Love. And look for the re-release of their Roman Time Travel series coming in 2015! Find out more at Morgan O’Neill’s website.

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5 Responses to Backstage with Morgan O’Neill

  1. This was a fun interview! The Thornless Rose sounds so exciting. It just hit my e-reader and I can’t wait to get started on it!

  2. joanna lloyd says:

    Your interview made me laugh, Juli! Those answers show me why Cary and Deborah are such a great duo – they balance each other with their oppositeness (I think writers are allowed to make up words). Congratulations on another wonderful book, and I know it is, because I’ve already read it, and just couldn’t put it down.

  3. Juli, thank you once again for hosting us on your beautiful blog. The interview was fun, the questions excellent. <3

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