Please help me welcome a dear author friend, and her latest release, a novella I had the pleasure of reading pre-release. Although I’m not a sci-fi fan, I always enjoy Diane’s stories. She presents the world in a more real, relatable way than I would have expected. And, her books are imaginative and intriguing. Mission to New Earth poses an interesting questions. Without further ado, take it away, Diane…
Alicia, thanks so much for helping me celebrate the release of my new science fiction romance novella MISSION TO NEW EARTH. And thanks for your input on this book prior to publication. You are a great editor!
Aw shucks, Diane…thank you!! I’m thrilled to have been a part of the story’s journey. Please tell us a little about yourself, where are you from? Where do you live now? Family? Pets?
I’m from a Detroit suburb. Now I live on the west side of Michigan, near Lake Michigan. I’ve been married for 42 years and have two great kids who are married with three kiddies total. The grandkids are the best part of getting old(er). LOL No pets right now. But when I need a dog fix, I visit my kids who each have two dogs.
Where did you get the idea for MISSION TO NEW EARTH?
I’ve been a fan of NASA since its inception. Lately, I’ve been intrigued with the Mars Mission, a private enterprise sending explorers to Mars by 2020. The thing that intrigues me most is the one-way trip concept. Why would anyone leave everything and everyone behind to go on a dangerous mission? I’ve written science fiction romance before, so this was not a new genre for me.
What do you love that most people don’t like and wouldn’t understand why you do?
I love science fiction. Now I know many people do, but my extended family (not Hubs or my kids) and many of my friends don’t, nor do they like reading or watching (movies or TV shows) anything sci-fi. My favorite channel is the SyFy channel. I don’t like creepy aliens, though. I still haven’t watched Alien or any of its sequels. I know, shame on me.
Do you collect anything?
Nutcrackers. My mother-in-law got me started back in the 1980s. The collection has gotten so large, I begged my family not to give me anymore and Hubs can only select one a year. I usually breakdown and buy one if I really like it. At Christmas, you’ll find nutcrackers on every top surface. My granddaughter has danced in The Nutcracker for two years, so I’m giving her a start on her own collection.
What’s your favorite childhood book?
Anne of Green Gables. I understand a new movie version is coming out soon. I’m looking forward to see it.
What do you want readers to come away with after they read MISSION TO NEW EARTH?
That they’ve been entertained and feel good about the book, especially the ending.
Have you written any other books that are not published?
Too many to count. LOL We’ll call them “practice” pieces. I’m relooking at a couple of them to see if they are publish-worthy.
Who is the most famous person you have ever met?
Nora Roberts. What a gracious lady. She was my mother’s favorite author. I took Mom to one of Nora’s booksignings. After waiting in a long line, we finally got to the table. Mom gushed that she’d been reading her books since Irish Thoroughbred (Nora’s first book). She clasped Mom’s hand and said, “Thank you so much.” She really made my mother’s day.
How did you come up with the title?
Funny that you should ask. This was probably the hardest title I’ve ever come up with. It changed so many times until I wrote a blog post for Paranormal Romantics, which I titled “Mission to New Earth.” The old lightbulb went off. That was a perfect title for the book.
Your most prized material possession? Why?
That is hard. Since family is so important to me, family photos (and videos) is number one. I have two other possessions that rank right up there. A proclamation by President James Buchanan appointing my 3rd great grandfather a consul from The Netherlands to the state of Iowa, signed in 1857 The other possession is a vase that belonged to my grandmother that originally came from her mother. Family history means a lot to me. It’s a connection to past generations. My heritage.
In MISSION TO NEW EARTH, my main character, Sara, has no family. Her parents died in a car accident and she was an only child. A couple of distant cousins, but that’s it. So her decision to go on a dangerous one-way trip to a new planet wasn’t that hard. I just can’t even imagine being alone in the world.
Movie: Star Wars: A New Hope because it started my love of science fiction.
Music: Golden Oldies
Place you’ve visited: Rocky Mountain National Park
Place you’d like to visit: Alaska
TV show from childhood: Mickey Mouse Club
TV show from adulthood: NCIS
Sports team: Detroit Tigers
Which do you prefer: Board games/card games or television? Tough decision. Card/board games with family and friends. TV, if I’m alone.
My question for readers (part of my giveaway): Would you leave everything behind to go to a new planet?
Earth’s overpopulation and dwindling resources force the United Earth Space Agency to expedite exploration of new planets for a possible new home. When new crises ensue—a giant tsunami and the threat of nuclear winter—the timeline changes. Eight years of training crammed into four. Sara Grenard and her team prepare for launch, but are they ready for the one-way trip? Will the Goldilocks planet prove just right for Earth’s inhabitants? Before time runs out.
As we followed, Marsh strode across the corridor to the left. The only private place down there was a lavatory. Not my favorite destination for a team meeting. But beggars couldn’t be choosers, as my mom used to say.
“We screwed up again,” Marsh announced as soon as the five of us joined him. His voice echoed off the hard surfaces. “In RT, it could kill us.”
“You and your damn RT,” Tom spat out. “Why can’t you just say real time like a normal person?”
Marsh shot him a look, one I’d hate directed at me.
Military background evident, he stood in the middle of the area near the showers, his feet wide apart, hands clasped behind his back. The others were more casual. Bill held up a white-tiled wall across from the showers. Ana and Gloria sat on a fake wood bench. Meanwhile, I crossed my arms and leaned against a sink. I tried to look casual even though my nerves were strung tight. We had to be ready for the launch. Earth was dependent on us.
All of my team, except Tom and Marsh, wore hang-dog expressions. At forty, Tom was the oldest on the team and a damn fine pilot. His red face and mutinous expression as he confronted Marsh belied his usually even-keeled manner.
“You’re exaggerating, Rayburn.” That was more than angry. Tom was defiant. “You always exaggerate. Worst case scenario? Is that all you think about?”
I’d never seen Tom so worked up. Gloria walked over to him and rubbed his shoulder. Usually in stressful times, her gentle caress calmed him down. Not now.
When he shrugged off her hand, I caught the hurt in her eyes.
“C’mon, Bill. Back me up on this.”
Bill held out his hands in a don’t-get-me-involved gesture. He was our engineer, both formal and practical. He could fix anything from wonky engines to food replicators.
Tom turned to me. “Sara?”
I knew that was coming. I tried to let my team work things out by themselves. Soon we’d be living in close confines, not just on the ship but on our Goldilocks planet. If we couldn’t live in harmony during training, we would be in deep trouble once we reached our final destination. We’d be in even worse trouble if we couldn’t work out our differences here. Marsh was right to pick the only place that wasn’t monitored. We absolutely didn’t want the directors to think we weren’t a well-functioning team.
They could pull us and put in the Shadow Team. Our replacements.
“Okay, guys, what did I miss?” With a forced grin, I raised my right hand. “I swear I wasn’t dreaming about a day at the beach during the sim.”
MISSION TO NEW EARTH is available at:
Amazon – https://amzn.com/B01JXZR0AK
Diane is giving away a $10 Amazon Gift Card to a lucky commenter. See the Rafflecopter for more opportunities.
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About the Author:
Diane Burton combines her love of mystery, adventure, science fiction and romance into writing romantic fiction. Besides the science fiction romance Switched and Outer Rim series, she is the author of One Red Shoe, a romantic suspense, and the Alex O’Hara PI mystery series. She is also a contributor to two anthologies: Portals, Volume 2 and How I Met My Husband. Diane and her husband live in West Michigan. They have two children and three grandchildren.
For more info and excerpts from her books, visit Diane’s website: http://www.dianeburton.com
Amazon author page: http://amzn.com/e/B00683MH5E
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