Workspace Wednesday welcomes Pamela Clare!


I am completely honored to have as my guest today Pamela Clare. Pamela is both an award-winning journalist and a Rita-nominated author. These days, she writes romantic fiction full time, shifting effortlessly – or so it appears! – between her fabulous Colonial historicals and her thrilling contemporary romantic suspenses (I-Team novels). But whatever genre she’s writing in, you can count on a powerful, sensual, gritty story that will put her characters through the wringer to earn their happily ever after, leaving you sighing as you close the book. Tissues are often required, which for me is pretty remarkable. As a writer reading the work of other writers, consciousness of craft can get in the way of the experience. Too often I think, “Wow, that was really well done! I could almost cry.” But when I live through Pamela’s characters’ big black moments, I flat out cry.


With that introduction, I give you Pamela Clare.



Pamela:  When I first started writing fiction, my desk was tucked away in my bedroom. I didn’t get much time to write — I was newly divorced and had two boys ages 9 and 6 — so that small space, just a nook in a little apartment, worked just fine. My little Mac Centris fit perfectly, and my boxes of index cards, which held the results of my research sat off to the side.


By the time I finished that book (7 years later), revised it (1 year), found an agent and got it published (9 months), I was living in a house. I had no real office space, but I turned the kitchen table into a make-shift office. It felt like there were always four people at dinner—me, my two boys, and my computer.  




But that didn’t work for long. I needed a filing cabinet for my growing body of research, as well as for contracts, and I had begun having difficulty sitting that included a strange numbness in my legs. So I did something radical.


I got rid of my living room furniture and took over that space as an office. I added bookshelves, supply shelves, a filing cabinet, inspiring art, a real desk, and a new computer. Then I went shopping for what I thought was the most important piece of office furniture — my office chair.


I’ve been through probably five chairs now—a $300 office chair, two zero-grav recliners, a ball, and the enormous adjustable $1,300 ergonomic chair I have now. And none of them helped. In fact, the problem grew worse, with excruciating leg pain that woke me up and made my life unbearable.


It turns out that the numbness in my legs, which I feel for some reason more when I sit, wasn’t caused by the placement of my posterior or the surface upon which it sat, but rather a badly impinged cervical spine brought about by a broken neck, the result of an accident. It had degenerated over many long years to the point where my spine was completely compressed.


After having spinal surgery to remove two vertebrae and replace them with implants in 2010, the horrible pain in my legs is largely gone, and I sleep at night again. However, the numbness isn’t. I have almost no normal feeling in my lower legs, and I still find sitting very uncomfortable. I go back and forth from my desk to a recliner, elevating my legs as often as I can. My neurologist has no idea why sitting provokes the neuropathy, but it does.


Moral of that story? An author’s true work space is her mind/body. Anything that interferes with the functioning of her mind/body — pain, illness, stress, lack of sleep, addiction, fear — is going to make it harder to write. So taking care of one’s body is paramount when one is an author.


But here in this photo of my office, you can see my desk, which has a number of personal keepsakes and good-luck charms on it. The baskets and shelves to the left of my desk hold mailing supplies — I do a lot of mailing — and the built-in filing cabinet, together with the new cabinet I got from my parents, hold my manuscripts, contracts, royalty statements, and so on.  



On the walls you can see my Lady of Shalott print by John William Waterhouse, a favorite. To the right of that, is a historic map of Fort Edward and Rogers Island, featured in my MacKinnon’s Rangers series. To the far left on the wall perpendicular to that one, is a map of the Lake George-Lake Champlain area, also featured in the MacKinnon’s Rangers series. I bought both at the Rogers Island Visitor Center on Rogers Island, which I call Ranger Island in the book. So they’re almost artifacts in a way and very special to me.


Speaking of MacKinnon’s Rangers, I’ve got two rosaries, one made of plain wood for Morgan and one of pearl and crystal for Amalie, hanging from the lamp. I held them or wrapped them around my wrist while I was writing Untamed.  





The big bookshelves were a gift from my parents. Behind them, you can see a motley collection of things that are significant to me, including the bright blue RITA finalist flag for Surrender. On that ledge I also have my National Journalism Award, sand from my recent trip to San Diego in an enamel box and from the bottom of Lake George (the large pill bottle), a vial of dirt from Rogers Island, and a dried out ear of corn from one of my many trips to the Navajo reservation.  



The top shelf holds my old dictionary, along with family photos. The group of shelves on the left holds my books, including the foreign translations of my titles, while the shelves to the right hold all the books I’ve purchased over the years for research, along with sweet gifts from readers. As you can see, the shelves are crammed!  



In the winter, I often take my laptop downstairs and write in front of my fireplace, where I the crackling of the wood makes for a very cozy, writerly feeling.  


Thanks for taking this little tour with me!  


Thank you for being here, Pamela! That was awesome.


Here are some places where you can learn more about Pamela or interact with her:


Pamela Website

Pamela Author Page on Facebook

Pamela Clare on Twitter


Her newest release is Defiant, the final MacKinnon brother in the MacKinnon’s Ranger series. And yes, it was amazing! You can find it at Amazon, B&N, or pretty much anywhere books are sold.




Okay, it’s your turn. What did you think of Pamela’s office? What’s your favorite element? Or just post to say hi to Pamela (she has the BEST fans!).


And here’s the thing – posting a comment will get you in on the draw to win a signed print copy of the MacKinnon’s Ranger trilogy! We have a second prize, too – a coupon for the free download of an electronic copy of Skin Deep (a novella in the I-Team series).








63 Responses to “Workspace Wednesday welcomes Pamela Clare!”

  • I have been reading Pamela’s books since the McKinnon brothers Colonial series. LOVED them, and love that you have rosaries for the characters over the lamp. Very cool.

    I am so glad the books are available again in e for anyone who wants to read them.

    I’d love to take a closer look at your bookshelves….it looks like a lot of fun stuff there!

    • Pamela Clare:

      Colleen, there is a lot of fun stuff on the shelves. The police handcuffs I learned how to break out of while writing UNLAWFUL CONTACT. Bookmarks from readers from around the world. Two “coins” from an Air Force officer — a man — who enjoys my books and got his wife and MIL interested in reading them. A sage bundle. Cover flats from all my books. NAKED EDGE bookmarks and DEFIANT trading cards.

      Anyone who wants one/both of those, can send an SASE to me at: Pamela Clare, PO Box 1582, Longmont, CO 80501, and I’ll sign one and send it back to you.

  • I like the idea of collecting something that you can touch to remind you of the characters. Did you run your fingers through the sand for any of your books?

    • Pamela Clare:

      Linda, I’m afraid of losing the sand grain by grain so I look at it and sometimes poke it with a careful fingertip, but I don’t run my fingers through it. I have a container of dirt from Rogers Island, the big pill bottle of sand from the bottom of Lake George and the enameled jewelry case (very small) with sand from Mission Beach. Just looking at them and having a piece of the ocean near me feels inspiring or satisfying in some way.

      I feel very connected to some places. Place and time — location and history — are very important to me.

  • Fun post, Pamela and Norah. I love Pamela’s office. It looks so organized and cozy. I also love the new cover for Defiant! Thanks for giving us a peek into your home office.

    • Pamela Clare:

      If my son could hear you say it looks organized, he would roll his eyes. 🙂

      That was a particularly tidy day when I took the photo. Often it looks like it’s been hit by a typhoon — papers everywhere, cardboard boxes everywhere. But thanks!

      It is cozy.

  • Wow, what a beautiful office. I love all the tangible items you have available for inspiration. And okay, I’m SO envious of how organized it all is!

  • Roxy Boroughs:

    It’s so fascinating to see other writers’ work spaces. Such a personal thing, and really makes me feel like I’ve come to know them a little better. Thanks, Nora. And thanks for sharing, Pamela. Love those hot covers, BTW.

    • Pamela Clare:

      Thank you, Roxy. Yes, writers’ spaces are a glimpse into their personal lives in some way.

      I studied art history in grad school, and my love of artwork stems from that. I have several other prints on the walls, including one of Picasso’s “Guernica,” but the Waterhouse is my favorite.

  • Alyssa Sullivan:

    It’s always interesting to see other authors’ work areas. I always enjoy seeing the different elements and things they use to make their space theirs, unique, and flow. It gives me ides for mine. 🙂
    I love Pamela’s work. She’s an amazing author, and one of my favorites! Thanks for the tour!!!

    • Pamela Clare:

      You’re welcome, Alyssa!

      And thank you! I’m thrilled to be on the list of someone’s favorite authors. That means a lot to me.

  • Crystal Scott:

    Hey Pamela!! Loved the tour of your office. 🙂 A very busy, but cozy place I have to say. I agree with Norah tissues are usually always needed when reading a Pamela Clare novel. Can’t wait for the next addition to your greatness.

    • Pamela Clare:

      Hey, Crystal!

      You’ve been in that space, only I’m betting it wasn’t that clean when you were there. I can’t remember.

      Crystal knows the awkward side of using one’s entire living room as an office. There isn’t a lot of space. I do have a family room with a single sofa, so that’s where all household activity outside of the bathroom and kitchen takes place.

  • Stephanie:

    Hi Pamela and Norah! Love the peek into Pamela’s office, thanks! Pamela, I actually really like the color of your office, it’s the first thing I noticed. It seems like a very peaceful and happy color. I also love how you kept the rosaries wrapped around your wrist while you wrote Morgan’s story, and or course the maps. All the personal touches you add are great, I did the same thing when I worked out of a home office 🙂

    I would love to win the signed MacKinnon trilogy, but I already have an e-copy of Skin Deep so no need to enter me there 🙂

    Thanks both of you!

    • Pamela Clare:

      Hi, Stephanie — I’m so glad you like the color. I can’t tell you how many trips we made to the paint store trying to get it the shade I wanted. I think there are probably four or five other colors beneath that one.

      I love accent walls. I have one in my kitchen that is the same shade as the house I lived in in Denmark — kind of a deep mustard yellow. It might sound gross, but it looks great, I think. I love it.

  • Jackie Turner:

    Okay, is this weird? I love the wall colour! Reminds me of water. But I swear I’d never get anything done all day for staring at it…

    • Pamela Clare:

      I hadn’t thought of it as looking like water — it’s a little dark in real life than it is in the photo — but I love water so it makes sense that I would love this shade.

      Things like color are important in an office, I think.

  • Stephanie Wagoner:

    Loved the workspace tour and all the little personal touches! Love reading Pamela’s books!

  • Donna Burton:

    Big fan of your books, Pamela. I live just south of Lake George so I was interested to read your connections to this area. Nice to have a work area where you can surround yourself with the necessities and the memories! Always look forward to your next book so I hope you’re able to keep ’em coming for a good long time.

    • Pamela Clare:

      Thank you, Donna! How lucky for you that you live right there in Ranger Country, as I call it. I’ve been there a couple times and hope to make it back again. It’s such an incredibly beautiful and historically rich place.

      I will do my best to keep the books coming — and faster now that I’m writing full-time.

  • Holly:

    Was introduced to Pamela Claire through my mom and she is now one of my most favorite authors. It was nice to see a peek into her office 🙂

  • Kendra Kuske:

    It’s so cool to see where all of the creative genius happens! 🙂 Thanks for the tour.

  • Hi Pamela,
    I enjoyed the tour very much! It was nice to get to know you better! So sorry you went through so much pain though. I have to honestly say that it did not reflect in any of your books! I love them all and you continue to be my all time favorite author! Keep up the historical writing ..they truly put you in a class of your own! PS…I just moved to Colorado from New York and I have to say I am loving it!

    • Pamela Clare:

      Hi, Cindy —

      Wow! All-time favorite? I’ll take that most gratefully. Thank you!

      Where do you live in Colorado? How funny because I keep wishing I could move to upstate NY. 🙂

      I’m so glad you’ve enjoyed my stories. And I’m glad you don’t think the health issues showed up in any of them. I will say that the loooong amount of time between them is, in part, a result of that. As Norah knows, it was a real struggle to get NAKED EDGE written while swamped by nerve-pain meds.

      I love historicals, so I will, indeed, keep writing them.

      Thanks for the good wishes.

  • Andrea Porubiansky:

    I would love to read this series!!! I am a HUGE I-Team fan. Just getting my feet wet with historicals.
    Love you Pamela!!!

    • Pamela Clare:

      Hi, Andrea —

      Thanks so much! You’re so sweet!

      I’m so glad you’ve enjoyed the I-Team and so happy to have you as a member of the I-Team Facebook group. I hope you enjoy the historicals, too!

  • I have met Pamela while visiting NY and enjoyed meeting her! I hope sometime she can come back and we can catch -up! I hope a future novel she can write about my area ! I alway’s look forward to the next one on the shelf!

    • Pamela Clare:

      Hi, Pamela —

      It was great to have that hour or two to meet you in New York and talk a bit. Thanks for making the drive to Ithaca. (Love that town!)

      You never know what area I might write about next. Could even be medieval England…

      And thanks for the kind words.

  • Penny Dyal:

    Ty for taking the time to share with us your working area. I found it to be a very nice place to write.

    • Pamela Clare:

      Thank you, Penny. It’s a great place to write. The only place that’s better is the coffee shop on Main Street, but that might be the effect of the coffee more than the place.

  • ClaudiaGC:

    Thank you for showing us where the magic happens! 😉 Your office looks really spacious and bright. Lovely room! Thank you for the giveaway.

    • Pamela Clare:

      Hi, Claudia — You’re so welcome! I love light and fresh air, so it was really necessary NOT to have it downstairs or someplace far from windows. Sunlight and nice, brisk air are very conducive to comfort and writing for me.


  • Carolyn:

    I love seeing where people work – especially where some of my favorite books were written!! I LOVED the I-Team series and can’t wait for the next book. I would love to read all of the historicals now.

    • Pamela Clare:

      Hi, Carolyn,

      I’m so glad you’ve enjoyed the I-Team. I’m working on STRIKING DISTANCE right now, hoping to finish it in a couple of months.

      If you do give the historicals a try, I hope you enjoy them. 🙂

  • Kathy Holt:

    It is interesting to get a glimpse of authors work areas, there are differences and similarities. I liked the Waterhouse print! Pamela is a new author to me, I am on the third book in the I-team series and love them..I started reading historicals, so I am sure I will eventually get to the MacKinnon’s Ranger series when I have completed the I-team, unless of course I win them..

    • Pamela Clare:

      Hi, Kathy,

      Thanks so much for giving the I-Team books a try. You’re just getting warmed up. I hope you enjoy the rest of the series.

      Waterhouse is one of my favorites. But then I guess I have a lot of favorite artists.

  • I was given a book called Surrender by Pamela! Ohhh my what a book I was reduced to grabbing the box of kleenexs ! I loved it.. Now I would love to read the other 2 books. I also like the way Pamela opens her self up to her readers. Was great to see where she writes.. This ads the personal touch most would love to have with their favorite authors! Thanks!

    • Pamela Clare:

      Hi, Dianna —

      I’m so glad you enjoyed Iain and Annie’s story. I got teary-eyed when I wrote parts of it, so it feels fair to me when I hear it made readers cry. 😉

      Thanks for joining in the little mini-tour of my office!

  • Pamela Clare:

    Hi, Claudia — You’re so welcome! I love light and fresh air, so it was really necessary NOT to have it downstairs or someplace far from windows. Sunlight and nice, brisk air are very conducive to comfort and writing for me.


  • Lisa Guertin:

    Hi Pamela,
    I love the wall color too. It reminds me of the beach. I had so much fun meeting you back in July at Lady Jane’s and just wish I could have stayed longer. It’s tough when you’re trying to combine the schedules of 23 people at a family reunion. Thanks for sharing your creative space!

    • Pamela Clare:

      Hi, Lisa

      It was fantastic that you were able to make Lady Jane’s. I totally understand about not being able to stay longer. I hope you had a good time.

      I love the beach, so if the color reminds you of the beach, I’m happy.

      And you’re so welcome! I thought Norah had a really fun idea here, so I was grateful she included me. (Thanks, Norah!)

  • Pamela, I am so in love with your MacKinnons. I wish there was so many more of them at least from that time period.

    Much luck in your future writings. I’ll be looking for more from you.


    • Pamela Clare:

      Hi, Brita —

      I’d only written 2.5 books when I was hit by the inspiration for the MacKinnon’s Rangers series. If I’d known what I was doing and had any idea how readers would come to love that series, there would be five MacKinnon brothers — or four and a sister.

      Hmmm…. A sister. Who maybe stayed behind in Scotland, secretly.

      Thanks for the idea! 😉

      And thanks for the kind words!

  • Amanda:

    I love getting a peek into an author’s workspace! I like that it has so many personal touches, it’s not just a place of work but a place of inspiration. Also, I just wanted to say I enjoy how personal your interviews/blog posts are as well. They’re always so interesting to read!

    • Pamela Clare:

      Thanks so much, Amanda! I’m happy to hear that. I just answer the wonderful questions I’m given.

      I’m glad you enjoyed the peek at my workspace. I have so many little odds and ends, but each thing has its meaning, at least to me.

  • Wow, that’s a lot of replies! And it makes me chuckle that the time here is currently 8:24 p.m. but some of the replies are two hours ahead!

    That’s a great post, and Linda, I like that idea of ‘touching’ something that reminds you of characters. I have a collection of key chains from all over the world, I wonder if any of them could inspire me. 🙂

    Great writing space, Pamela. I love to sit near the fireplace too but mine is gas, so it doesn’t crackle like yours does. Nor does it have that awesome scent. Oh well, I can still sit it’s warmth. I love that part.


    • Pamela Clare:

      Hi, Renee-Ann,

      My parents have a gas fireplace, too. The advantage? They don’t have to haul, split, stack, and carry wood — or clean up all the mess it makes. And it’s still nice and cozy-warm. That’s a lot of work for the nice scent and the crackle.

      I’m glad you enjoyed the post.

  • Lori Meehan:

    Hi Pamela I love your books. At the moment I’m reading Hard Evidence. I think I’m in love with Julian.
    I liked your office. I think it looks spaciousand user friendly.
    I enjoyed the interview and thank you for the giveaway.

    • Pamela Clare:

      Hi, Lori —

      Oh! I love Julian, too. I’m glad you’re enjoying the series and that you enjoyed the interview as well. Thanks so much!

      Wait till you meet Marc Hunter. 😉

  • Hi Pamela,
    Seeing all the personal items in your office, your workspace is such a wonderful reflection of who you are. I feel I know you simply by ‘visiting’ your office.
    Stella MacLean
    November 2012

    • Pamela Clare:

      Hi, Stella —

      Thanks so much! I’m glad you enjoyed the little tour.

      The place really needs dusting at the moment…

  • Love this post. Thank you Norah for thinking up this idea. And I just cringed reading about Pamela’s pain. I love the fact she has things that mean something to her. Just the small things. I too have them.

  • Pamela Clare:

    Hi, Barbara —

    Chronic pain is no fun. It’s life-wrecking, in fact. Thanks for caring. I’m glad to be on this side of that ordeal, though I don’t think things are necessarily going to be easy. Once you have a fake neck, you’ve crossed a line.

    I’m glad you’re able to have things that hold meaning for you near, too.

    Thank you!

  • Oh my, Pamela,talk about a dedicated writer to keep going through that kind of pain. I guess if we’ve got the bug, nothing will stop us. Glad to hear you’re feeling somewhat better. Nice office!

  • Pamela, I remember your chair when we came to visit. I’m glad most of your pain is gone, but it’s horrible that you still get it when you sit. The laptop and the fireplace sound nice on a cold winter night!

    • Pamela Clare:

      Hi, Bonnie — I recall someone joking about it resembling Captain Kirk’s chair or something. It sure was expensive! Too bad I rarely make use of it. But yes the fireplace and laptop are wonderful in the winter. Maybe that’s why I prefer winter to summer.

      So good to see you here!

  • Katariina:

    I have read two books of your historicals: Surrender and Ride the Fire. Love the Surrender’s new cover, one of the favorites of all. I haven’t yet read your contemporarys.

  • Pamela Clare:

    Hi, Katariina — I’m so glad you enjoyed SURRENDER and RIDE THE FIRE! I love the new cover for SURRENDER, too, if for no other reason than because it’s historically accurate. The original cover showed Alp-like mountains that couldn’t possibly be in upstate NY, along with a village of tipis. I had specifically asked them NOT to put any tipis because they weren’t used by Eastern Woodlands nations. I just about screamed when I saw it.

    But it’s all better now. 🙂

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