Tag Archives: Author Interview

Author Interview with Maxine Douglas ~ New Release: The Reluctant Bride

Please help me welcome fellow OKRWA author, Maxine Douglas with an interview and her latest release!

 

Please tell us a little about yourself, where are you from? Where do you live now? Family? Pets?

I am originally from Wisconsin (born and bred) where the UW-Wisconsin Badgers reside. Go Bucky! And home of the Green Bay Packers, yes that makes me a cheese head. LOL My husband and I know live in a small city southwest of Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. We traded 6 months of winter for a few weeks, and have enjoyed being here. My oldest son lives in the same city we do with his family, and our three other grown children live in Wisconsin.  We have two grand-daughters: one is a senior at UW-Whitewater majoring in Marketing and the youngest will turn 10 this summer. We currently have two horses and one dog.

Where did you get the idea for The Brides Along the Chisholm Trail series?

I was asked by Callie Hutton if I was interested in joining a western historical boxset. Of course I said, than immediately went into panic mode when I learned I had to have it done by September, and it was June. I was in the midst of my first mystery and needed to finish it before delving into a new genre…again. But I finished Simply to Die For (sold it to MuseItUp Publishing), and finished The Reluctant Bride for the Wanted: One Bride boxset on time.

Why did you choose this genre (is it something you’ve written in before)?

I’d not written western historical before even though I do have three historical time-travels published.

Was there anything unusual, any anecdote about this book, the characters, title, process, etc, you’d like to share?

The idea for The Brides Along the Chisholm Trail series actually came from the director of our local Chamber of Commerce. He approached me at a three-day event last October and said he had a great story idea for me. I mulled it over and came up with three book ideas. I’d already had The Reluctant Bride set in Dodge City, The Marshal’s Bride takes place in Fred, Indian Territory which was about 7 miles southeast of Chickasha and is now available, The Cattlemen’s Bride takes place in Texas and will be available late summer.

What is the most difficult thing about writing a book?

If you are writing a historical you want to make sure you have even the small things right, and that you don’t bore your reader with too many facts.

What was the most difficult thing about this one in particular?

The research for Fred since it is so close to where I live. I spent several hours at the Grady County Historical Museum where Patricia Cunningham was a great help.

Are there any tricks, habits or superstitions you have when creating a story?

Even though I have a home office I do like to go to one of the following places once in a while: the library, McDonalds, a park, or on my back patio. I also will watch/listen to movies in the genre that I’m writing to keep me on track and my mind set in the right place. I have found that if family is around I can’t write. I think it’s because in the back of my mind I know that they’ll talk to me, whereas in a public place the chance of that happening is very slim.

What book have you read that you wish you had written?

Oh my, there are so many. Some of my favorites are The Kent Family Chronicles by John Jakes, Outlander, Game of Thrones, anything Heather Graham writes…need I go on? LOL

Do you collect anything?

Like most authors I collect books. At one time I had an extensive collection but have since pared it down to only the books I really want to keep in print. I’ve been picking up the old Nancy Drew books as I find them as they were my favorites when I was in grade school. I also will pick up any horse story books I find because I love horses (what girl doesn’t?). Plus I do have a collection of S&P that was started by my maternal grandmother.

What was your first job?

Babysitting. But my first actual paycheck was from a department store called Prange’s. I remember when it opened in the East Towne Mall in Madison back in the 1970s, it was amazing.

What do you want readers to come away with after they read The Brides of the Chisholm Trail?

A sense that they read a good story, that they lived the lives of my heroes and heroines.

What is your favorite quote?

I find a new quote each month for my newsletter, but I think this is one by Ernest Hemingway is one of my favorites: “There is no friend as loyal as a book.”

If you were stranded on a deserted island and you could have 3 (inanimate) objects, what would they be?

Hmm, let’s see–books, my laptop, my phone.

What celebrity would you most like to be stranded on an island with?

This is going to sound strange but Drew Cary – he’s so funny and seems down to earth. If he wasn’t available, then I’d go with Kevin Costner.

Your most prized material possession? Why?

My wedding rings because I didn’t get married for the first time until I was 46 years old. A high school friend and I reconnected in January of 2001 and in August of that same year we said “I do.” Ladies, it was definitely worth the wait! *wink*

What do you want your tombstone to say?

Loving wife, mother, grandmother, friend, romance author. Spark your imagination, read a book.

Have you written any other books that are not published?

Yes! I have an erotica that I just can’t seem to finish. Plus, I have a number that have a paragraph or two written as a reminder of what the story is about. I keep a spreadsheet where I have titles, character names/descriptions, and blurbs all waiting to come to life for my readers.

Who is the most famous person you have ever met?

There have been a few. When I lived in Nashville I became good friends with Charlie Dick (Patsy Cline’s husband), I dated James Monroe (Bill Monroe’s son) for a while, and I had the privilege of having a good chat with Heather Graham and Jodi Thomas a few years ago.

Your favorite

Movie  White Christmas

Music County

Place you’ve visited Galveston, TX

Place you’d like to visit England

TV show from childhood Zorro

TV show from adulthood Outlander

Food Seafood

Sports team Green Bay Packers / UW-Wisconsin Badgers

Thank you so much, Maxine! I enjoyed getting to know you better. ha, I will have to say I find Drew Cary an odd choice. 😀

Readers, check out her latest release:

 

 

Find Maxine here:

Goodreads / Author Blog / Newsletter / Facebook / Twitter / Mailing List Signup

 

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Filed under Author Blog Post, New Release

Author Interview with Elaine Calloway ~ New Release: No Grits No Glory #Giveaway

 

Please help me welcome Elaine Calloway…

 

Please tell us a little about yourself. Where are you from? Where do you live now? Family? Pets?

Hi and thanks for having me here! I’m originally from New Orleans, which I believe shaped who I became as a writer. I now reside in metro Atlanta, Georgia with my husband and very spoiled dog, a black lab mix. I have 3 grown step-kids, so the hubby and I enjoy our empty nest while we’re still able to see and get together with family since everyone lives in the metro Atlanta area.

Where did you get the idea for NO GRITS NO GLORY and why did you choose this genre?

The original nugget for the first book in my Southern Ghosts Series came from an offhand conversation. My sister-n-law’s mother owns a rental apartment in metro Atlanta, and at one time or another every family member has lived there. Aunts, uncles, cousins, nieces, etc. Some lived there for a few months; some lived for several years. When my niece mentioned she would be moving in there for a few months before she got married, I remember thinking, “What if those walls could talk? All those generations of family living there. What would the walls say?” and that became the start of NO GRITS NO GLORY.

As far as picking the genre (romantic suspense/ghosts/paranormal), I think it really picked me! Growing up in New Orleans and being surrounded by Gothic architecture, Voodoo history and cemeteries definitely contributed to my wanting to write about otherworldly and paranormal things.

What book have you read that you wish you had written?

Anything by Dennis Lehane or Cornelia Funke. Both of them have such vivid characters and settings, and they have a way with words that gives music to the story. Dennis Lehane’s Patrick McKenzie & Gennaro crime series and Cornelia Funke’s Inkheart series are two of my favorites.

Do you have another occupation, other than writer? If so, what is it and do you like it?

Sort of. I’m a technical writer by day, and a fiction writer by lunch hour, night and weekend. Basically, I take complex software and create user manuals that simplify how to use the software for a living. It’s dull, but it pays the bills! I also do speaking and teaching gigs, helping other writers learn to write their book, stay motivated, and then how to self-publish their books. I do enjoy this immensely and hope to eventually do more of this along with full-time fiction writing.

What’s the main thing that you could get rid of in your life that would give you more writing time?

My 9-5 job, no doubt. While I do have generous vacation, the traffic and time spent having to concentrate on tech stuff and then switch over to creativity is a difficult balance. Plus, just the general stress of corporate life doesn’t help the creativity.

What do you want readers to come away with after they read NO GRITS NO GLORY?

Hmm, good question. I suppose I want them to come away with an open mind to the possibilities of the paranormal. I’ve loved ghost stories as long as I can remember, but mine have mystery/humor/paranormal elements, not horror. I want readers to enjoy the book and learn more about my favorite place on Earth, Savannah, where the book is set.

What actors would you like in the main roles if your book were made into a movie?

Ha ha! I actually have a Pinterest board for every book I write, so the photos can be found here: https://www.pinterest.com/elainecalloway/no-grits-no-glory-bk-1-southern-ghosts-series/.
To sum up, Linda Fiorentino for Brianna, Eric McCormack or Tom Cruise as Steven, James McAvoy as Declan, and Ed Begley Jr. as Begley.
For my writing process, I typically automatically pick either an actor or someone I know with the look/expressions I want for the characters. Then I add the photos to Pinterest and that keeps me inspired. I’m not a huge Tom Cruise fan, but Eric McCormack wasn’t my ideal pic either, so I kind of combined the two into my own visual to write the Steven character.

Who is the most famous person you have ever met?

I had the chance to meet John Lithgow when I was a teenager and worked at a movie theater that hosted a premiere of The Manhattan Project. He and several producers attended.

We also held a premier for Spacecamp the same night, so I was able to meet Lea Thompson.

How did you come up with the title?

It was a pun on the ole saying, ‘no guts, no glory’ but the book also has some Southern humor and scenes with grits (a popular breakfast item in the South) so the title seemed to fit perfectly.

One humorous note, though! I didn’t think everyone would know what grits were, but I never expected grits to mean different things in different parts of the world. I wrote another funny blog post here about how ‘grits’ in South Wales is not what anyone thinks it is!  http://www.elainecalloway.com/the-lowdown-on-grits/
Your favorite…

Movie – The Princess Bride, Secondhand Lions, Under the Tuscan Sun. Not sure I can ever narrow down favorite movies to just one!
Place you’ve visited – Savannah, Georgia
Place you’d like to visit – Ireland
TV show from childhood – Scooby Doo (mystery, ghosts, humor, suspense – all of which I now write in my books!)
TV show from adulthood – LOST
Which do you prefer: Board games/card games or television? – TV. I enjoy reading but also enjoy binge watching on Netflix.

Thank you, Elaine I enjoyed getting to know you. We have some things in common. Dennis Lehane is one of my favorite authors. I LOVE his Patrick & Angie series. And Mystic River. I haven’t read the Inkheart series. I also try to make Pinterest boards for all my books, but I haven’t kept it caught up. I love doing it though.

Check out Elaine’s books, aren’t the covers fantastic? They both sound like great reads!

GIVEAWAY!!: READERS – Tell me your favorite ghost story or something that relates to a ghost story or ghost tour that you’ve taken for a chance to win the 2nd book in the Southern Ghosts Series, TICKET TO DIE.

Bio:

Elaine Calloway grew up in New Orleans with a love of all things paranormal. After recently completing a 5-book Urban Fantasy/Paranormal series, she is now focusing on more books in her Southern Ghosts Series. She also speaks at conferences and writing chapters about the craft, how to utilize time management and mental focus when writing a book, and how to self-publish books and market them online. She has a free Marketing for Authors course that is available here. For more info on her books, visit her author website at www.elainecalloway.com. For more info on her online courses and how to self publish, visit www.howtoselfpublishyournovel.com.

 

No Grits No Glory – all buy links/vendors (and book trailer) listed on my website page here: http://www.elainecalloway.com/books/southern-ghosts-series/no-grits-no-glory/

Blurb –

Brianna fled to Savannah to escape the voices of the dead. Just when she thought she’d left all paranormal things behind, she discovers her house is haunted. Not just haunted, but haunted by Southern ghosts. These persistent beings not only hide her white shoes after Labor Day, but they leave grits-caked dishes in the sink, and swear to wreak havoc on her life – – unless she helps them.

Steven put Savannah in his rearview mirror years ago to follow his passion for music. When his band splits up and he can’t reach his little sister for weeks, he races home—only to learn his whole family died in a mysterious house fire. The house Brianna now lives in.

Together, Brianna and Steven must discover who murdered Steven’s family and become caught in a web of intrigue that will risk their careers, their homes–but especially their lives.

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Filed under Author Blog Post, giveaway, New Release

Author Interview with Kate Hill – PLUS – Fangs and Fists 1: Bolt

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Today’s guest is Kate Hill, with her new release and a fun interview…

 

Please tell us a little about yourself, where are you from? Where do you live now? Family? Pets?

My name is Kate Hill, but I also write as Saloni Quinby. I’m a vegetarian New Englander. My hobbies include reading (of course!), watching horror and action movies, working out and spending time with my family and pets. I have two dogs and two cats.

Where did you get the idea for FANGS AND FISTS 1: BOLT?

I wanted to write a series about werewolves and demons that is different than the Witches and Wolves/Witches and Demons series that I write under my Saloni Quinby pen name. I knew that I wanted the werewolves to be gladiators as well. Keeping these things in mind, I outlined the Fangs and Fists series.  

Are there any tricks, habits or superstitions you have when creating a story?

When I’m writing a first draft, I like to listen to music. It helps me block out this world and step into the fictional world. When I’m working on edits, though, I prefer quiet.

Do you collect anything?

Books, comic books and movies (mostly horror and action).

What was your first job?

From the age of twelve to sixteen, I worked for my father. He was a painting contractor, so I swept a lot of floors and sanded a lot of walls!

Have you written any other books that are not published?

Yes! Many.

If you could spend time with a character from your book, whom would it be? And what would you do during that day? (PG-13 please 🙂 ) 

Blaze from my out of print Knights of the Ruby Order series. He’s hard to communicate with, but I’d like to talk to him.

What do your friends and family think of your writing?

My family and friends are incredibly supportive. I’ve been very lucky in that way.

What character in your book are you least likely to get along with?

Master Zigor from the Blood and Soul series. I’ve always called him my problem child. LOL!

How did your interest in writing originate? 

For as long as can remember I’ve loved to read and tell stories. When I was a kid, reading was my favorite thing to do and I wanted to write stories of my own to entertain people.

Who is your favorite author and what is it that really strikes you about their work?

Alexandre Dumas. His stories had everything–action, romance, great heroes and villains.

What is your favorite…

Movie – This one is too difficult to narrow down.

Music – I like mostly metal.

Place you’ve visited – The White Mountains

Place you’d like to visit – Hawaii

TV show from childhood – Scooby Doo

TV show from adulthood – This one is hard to narrow down, too.

Food – Peas

Sports team – I don’t like to watch team sports.

Which do you prefer: Board games/card games or television? Television.

Thank you so much, Kate. I enjoyed getting to know you. Now, Kate has a question for our readers…

What is your favorite supernatural creature?

 

 

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Blurb

Kiara remembers what life was like living free–before she was taken by demons and bred to gladiators so that the new generations of wolves would retain their ferocity but forget their freedom. Mated to top gladiator Grit, she has a son with this surprisingly gentle lover who is also planning their escape. When Grit is killed in the arena, his close friend Bolt upholds his promise to protect Kiara and the cub.

Bolt and Kiara have loved each other from the moment they met, but they buried their feelings because she was mated to his best friend. When Grit dies, despite their guilt, Bolt and Kiara surrender to their desire for each other. Will their love be strong enough to help them win freedom from their evil masters?

Excerpt

“You haven’t even had time to grieve,” he said.

“Grit was a good man. I couldn’t have found a better friend here in this disgusting place, but we were thrown together. We didn’t choose each other. We decided to make something out of what we had.”

“And if you had a choice?” he whispered in a voice rough with emotion and so close to her that his breath tickled her ear.

“After what just happened, you have to ask? Haven’t you always known?”

“I want to hear it.” He grasped her upper arms and turned her to face him. His gaze burned into her. “I need to hear it, Kiara.”

“I would have chosen you, Bolt. For the times Grit and I actually mated, I would do so with you every night in my dreams.”

“Kiara.” He pulled her into a possessive embrace. Then he pulled back enough to hold her gaze again. “I’ve loved you for so long. Grit was my closest friend, but seeing you together gnawed at my heart. I didn’t want him to die, but I love you. I can’t help feeling it’s somehow wrong.”

“It’s not. I feel the same way.”

From the adjoining room came Jett’s voice.

“I have to check on him,” she said, wrapping the towel around her middle.

She left the room and Bolt followed, putting a towel around his waist.

They found the cub sitting in his crib, smiling.

“I know he’s not yours,” Kiara began, picking up Jett, but Bolt took him from her.

“Now he is,” Bolt said with as much feeling as when he’d confessed his love for her. Jett snug in his arms, he leaned closer to Kiara and whispered in her ear, “Grit told you of our escape plans.”

Buy link

http://changelingpress.com/product.php?&upt=book&ubid=2562

katehill2017

Bio

Always a fan of romance and the paranormal, Kate Hill started writing over twenty years ago for pleasure. Her first story, a short erotic vampire tale, was accepted for publication in 1996. Since then she has sold over one hundred short stories, novellas and novels.

When she’s not working on her books, Kate enjoys reading, working out, spending time with her family and pets and running the Compelling Beasts Blog, dedicated to antagonists, antiheroes and paranormal creatures. She also writes under the name Saloni Quinby.

Contact links

http://www.kate-hill.com

http://www.kate-hill.com/blog

http://www.kate-hill.com/compellingbeastsblog

https://www.amazon.com/Kate-Hill/e/B002BLS7OW/ref=sr_tc_2_0?qid=1485103167&sr=1-2-ent

http://www.facebook.com/katehillsaloniquinby

https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/16157.Kate_Hill

https://plus.google.com/110359814167605096582

http://www.twitter.com/katehillromance

http://www.twitter.com/compbeastsblog

https://groups.yahoo.com/neo/groups/katehill/info

 

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Filed under Author Blog Post, New Release

Author Interview with Cindy Procter-King PLUS New Release: Picture Imperfect

 

Please help me welcome today’s guest, Cindy Procter-King. So happy to have you today, Cindy. Thank you for agreeing to be interviewed. 

  1. Where did you get the idea for Picture Imperfect?

The idea for PICTURE IMPERFECT kind of sprang itself on me and then took a long time to develop. The heroine, Ursula Scott, and her basic situation (she was photographing a series of men in her underwear and wasn’t happy about it) along with the opening line (If Ursula Scott had to look at one more naked man, she’d scream) popped into my mind while I was considering what sort of book I might write about a woman disgruntled with her boss? This was long ago, before ChickLit fell “out of favor,” because at first I thought Ursula’s story was a ChickLit one. But I was contracted to write something else at the time, so I put the idea germ away and would bring it out from time to time and work on it some more. Eventually, I realized it wasn’t a ChickLit story at all, but a romantic comedy/mystery with suspense elements. The title went through a few incarnations as I grew to know the characters, beginning as UNDRESSING URSULA, then moving to SEX, PIs & PACKING TAPE, and finally PICTURE IMPERFECT, which makes total sense considering Ursula is a photographer and that at the beginning of the story something indefinable in her life just isn’t right. 🙂

I call the story a “Sassy Suspense,” because the suspense and mystery elements are fully braided with the characterization, romance, the family and friends dynamics, and the secondary characters arcs, and the story includes some pretty gritty incidents in both back story and current story time but with a humorous tone. I realized that the original title, UNDRESSING URSULA, which was meant to convey the character’s self-realization as she moved through the story, getting to know what she really wanted in a sort of peeling away or “undressing,” actually applied to the unfolding mystery and suspense elements as well as to Ursula’s rapidly developing relationship with her hero, Gabe McKenzie. So the title evolved along with the story.

  1. Sounds intriguing. My stories often undergo title changes as well. Are there any tricks or habits you use when creating a story?

I am pretty much a linear writer. I am mainly a pantser, but I plot as I go. I can only “see” a little of the plot at a time, so I try to think of how I work my way through my books as carving a tunnel out of a mountain. I need to “see” around one curve before I realize where the next curve is. For me, each scene or chapter grows organically from the previous one, so I do tend to fast-draft one scene and then revise and edit it before moving on to the next. However, with PICTURE IMPERFECT I decided to try something else, so committed myself to writing whatever scenes I could “see,” no matter where they fell in the book, during NaNoWriMo one year. It was a lot of fun, but in the end I had a beginning, what I thought might be my ending, but not a whole lot in the middle. And it took me a looong time to develop the middle. A lot of revisions and one monstrous rewrite.

Part of this was because I don’t usually write scenes out of order, and my muse seemed to stage a revolt against the idea. It was very aggravating, LOL. Because I wrote out of order, I pretty much knew the ending and thought I knew the villain. But my muse wasn’t happy with knowing the ending already, I guess, because as I rewrote the book she kept trying to change the villain. And I went along with her, but in the end the villain was the person I had envisioned in the beginning.

That sounds more like a struggle than a trick or habit. 😉 But every book I write feels like a struggle when I’m getting down the “first write,” which some authors might call a first draft, but because I revise as I go I call it a “first write.” I have had to really teach myself to accept my process, to literally tell myself to “have faith” and trust my muse. It’s like the story is buried in my head, and I can at times “feel” that my mind is working on it—but I don’t know the resulting scene yet. Sometimes I tell myself to “just sit down and see what I can do,” trying to alleviate the pressure of producing (because of course it seems like every other writer “knows” their scenes before they write them!). I tend more to hear and feel my characters than see them, so writing for me is a little like acting. I try to “channel” the characters until I can hear what they’re saying and feel their emotions. Then I “become” them. This is how I can write a complete asshat of a character and enjoy myself immensely. He thinks he’s the hero of the story, so why wouldn’t he be fun to write?

  1. Yes, we all have different processes that work for us. We just have to do what we do and trust the process. 🙂 What do you love that most people don’t like and wouldn’t understand why you do?

Lemons. When I was in Girl Guides in grade 5, I lost a game and had to suck a lemon. I was terrified because I had heard all my life how everyone hates lemons, the phrase “sour like a lemon,” etc. But, you know, it wasn’t bad! I have loved lemons ever since. I don’t eat them like fruit (except when I was pregnant with my second son, when I craved them), but I drench fish with lemon and then eat the rest (except for the skin).

  1. I love lemon too, especially in water. It just makes a huge difference. And Martini Drops are my current favorite Martinis. 🙂 What’s the main thing that you could get rid of in your life that would give you more writing time?

Well, right now I can’t afford it, but if I could…to hire a housecleaner and a meal planner. Someone who would not only plan all the meals but also shop for and prepare them to the point where I could just add a dab here and then and it would taste super fresh. I don’t mind housework; it’s just a matter of lack of time. But I strongly dislike cooking. I would rather someone else cook and I clean up. Sadly, neither my husband and I are cooks. I’m not a bad cook. I’m actually a pretty decent cook. I just don’t enjoy it. And I forget when I’m cooking to check on stuff. So now when I have something on my stove and get bored, I bring my iPad into the kitchen with me and sit down right in front of the stove so I won’t forget I’m cooking. Otherwise, I burn stuff. We had a cartoon on the fridge for years that said, “If there’s smoke, dinner’s ready.”

It would also be nice to be able to afford an assistant to handle promotional and bookkeeping chores. But that’s on the “someday maybe” list. I do like having a finger in every pie, keeping on top of things myself. But it cuts into my writing time, and I hate bookkeeping with a passion. It’s a constant struggle between being a control freak/what I can’t afford to farm out/the damn cooking!

  1. Oh gosh, wouldn’t that be fantastic! Some day… What do you want readers to come away with after they read PICTURE IMPERFECT?

First and foremost, I want to entertain my readers. I want them to smile and perhaps chuckle as they read my stories, because I smile and chuckle as I write them. But I also want my readers to feel what my characters are going through, to feel the love story developing, to know that these two people, my characters, are meant to be together. I want readers to think about the characters after they finish the story, to wish there was a sequel, to want to know more about the world or the relationships. I want them satisfied with the story, but wanting more from me as an author, whether I’m writing sassy suspense, romantic comedy, or my heartwarming hometown romances.

  1. What genre have you never written that you’d like to write?

So many genres, so little time! So far, under two names, I have written contemporary romance, romantic comedy and now sassy suspense as Cindy and then erotic romance and romantic erotica under a pen name. As Cindy, now that I actually know I can write mystery/suspense (which I discovered while writing PICTURE IMPERFECT), I would like to write more in that arena. The big challenge is that I’m a slow writer and if I keep writing long books (PI is over 130,000 words) I could maybe write one book a year. I don’t know if that slow pace can work in Indie publishing. For now I’m waiting it out and working on multiple series that I’ve already started.

I have a bad habit (which I am currently attempting to address) of writing one or two books in a series and then moving on even though I know the current publishing climate favors series. So I would LIKE to and I AM now working on established series until I have at least three books or stories in a series before I allow myself to get pulled somewhere else. Like…I have an idea for a cozy mystery series with a quirky heroine and her sidekick, but it would be really, really bad of me to start that cozy mystery series without continuing on with my “established” series first. Very bad.

So very bad.

(Help.)

  1. Ha, I do the same thing. I have three or more books that desperately need sequels! Your most prized material possession? Why?

My oak roll-top desk. My husband gave it to me for our first anniversary. Instead of buying me something “paper,” he got me something to “put paper on.” I love my roll-top desk! We’ve been married 31 years, so the desk is now 30 years old—and so is the chair. The chair has barely worked for years, but I won’t give it up. It wobbles as I sit on it. I have two desks in my office, a computer desk with my desktop computer and then the roll-top desk. I draft and do business stuff at the computer. The roll-top desk is for revising on paper (I can’t really get to know my characters on the computer; the magic happens on paper with a pen or pencil in hand), planning my days, and organizing my life (I am the family financier/household manager). I love all the little compartments. It’s like a reflection of my brain, both cluttered and organized at once. It reflects my writing process—messy yet organized. And it reflects my husband’s love for me and continued support of my writing endeavors, which I cherish.

OH wow, what a perfect answer to the final question. LOVE this! And, speaking of perfect, er, well, imperfect, tell us about your latest release…

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Blurb:

Just when she thought she had her life on autofocus…

Photographer Ursula Scott is six short months from buying her boss’s studio and helping her family knock down a massive debt. She can put up with his hairball antics for that long, right?

Right?

 But, oh, he makes life difficult. She can barely restrain herself when he hogs credit for her assignments, and now half-naked weirdos are responding to his ad for her first magazine photo spread. On top of that, someone is sabotaging the studio. Worse, she discovers her sexy apprentice is a former cop practicing his newbie PI skills on the case—and she’s a suspect!

Suddenly, Ursula’s dreams and hard work seem about to go up in smoke. In more ways than one.

Well, not on her watch.

When Gabe McKenzie moves home following the shooting that kyboshed his career, he doesn’t expect to get sucked into finding the culprit wreaking havoc at his uncle’s photography studio. He certainly doesn’t expect to fall for Ursula Scott, a long-legged brunette with a definite motive and a desire to play Nancy Drew. Even as he clears her, the sabotage escalates into a bizarre stalking, placing Ursula…and Gabe’s hopes for their future…in danger.

If only he can convince her to stop snooping around and let him do his job as a PI, before an unknown menace threatens not only her dreams—but her life.

 

Excerpt: 

Ursula placed an order with the food vendor. As the man set down two steaming cups of apple cider with cinnamon sticks for stirring, she caught sight of Gabe wandering toward the cart, tucking his phone into his coat.

He picked up the cups. “Smells good. Thanks.”

“You’re welcome. I hope you like hot cider. It’s locally made.”

“Any warm beverage on a fall day is ideal.”

Nodding, Ursula gazed at the gray clouds obliterating the earlier patches of blue sky. “Looks like rain’s coming.”

Gabe pointed to the hood hanging down the back of his jacket. “I have an instant umbrella this time.”

“I noticed. See, you can learn.”

“You’re a good role model.”

Another compliment. A girl could grow accustomed to his gallantry.

She collected the bag of warm, soft pretzels and, side by side, they strolled in companionable silence to the slatted bench. Gabe’s limp had improved since he’d walloped Lance, thank goodness.

They sat, Gabe on her right, his hurt leg extended in front of him, heel balanced on the grass. Preschoolers played on a jungle gym while moms and nannies chatted and supervised. A couple of seagulls squawked at the base of a trashcan.

“Here you go.” Gabe passed her a hot cup of cider.

She set down the drink with a quick thanks before opening the vendor bag. She’d ordered two varieties of homemade pretzels, and the contrasting scents of cinnamon-sugared dough and spicy mustard glaze drifted from the sack. Her mouth watered.

“What did your physical therapist say?” she asked Gabe.

“Like I figured, I’m to ice the muscle tonight and take ibuprofen. I just saw her yesterday. Because I was so touched by your concern, she’s also fitting me in late this afternoon.”

He was only teasing, but butterflies scattered inside her tummy. “That’s a relief. I’m glad you checked.”

His shoulder bumped hers. “Anything for you, boss.”

Tingles shot everywhere. He was so sexy. So incredibly tempting.

 

Buy Links:

Amazon – https://www.amazon.com/Picture-Imperfect-Suspense-Cindy-Procter-King-ebook/dp/B01LWS7E0S/

iBooks – https://geo.itunes.apple.com/us/book/picture-imperfect/id1161811331?at=11l9SH

Kobo – https://store.kobobooks.com/en-ca/ebook/picture-imperfect-7

NOOK – http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/picture-imperfect-cindy-procter-king/1124924747?ean=2940153530611

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Bio:

Cindy Procter-King writes sassy suspense, rollicking romantic comedy, and heart-tugging small-town romance. To sum it up, feel-good fiction! A Romance Writers of America® Golden Heart finalist, Cindy’s mission in life is to see her surname spelled properly—with an E. That’s P-r-o-c-t-E-r. Never, under any circumstances, should you spell it with two O’s (shudder).

Cindy’s novels and short fiction are available as eBooks from retailers all over the world, as well as in trade paperback, library hardcover and large print, some foreign editions, and audiobooks.

Cindy lives in beautiful British Columbia with her family, a cat obsessed with dripping tap water, and Allie McBeagle.

Contact Links:

 

Website: http://www.cindyprocter-king.com

Newsletter signup/email: http://www.cindyprocter-king.com/contact.html

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/cindyprocterkingauthor

Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/cindypk

 

 

 

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Author Interview with Charlotte O’Shay – NEW RELEASE: The Marriage Ultimatum

Please help me welcome author Charlotte O’Shay…

Thank you for joining me today, Charlotte. Please tell us a little about yourself, where are you from? Where do you live now? Family? Pets?

Hi Alicia. So happy to be on your blog.

I’m a born and raised New York City kid. I grew up in the Chelsea section of Manhattan, the middle child and now the eldest female in a large family. From a very early age I dreamed up stories about the people I encountered and always had my nose in a book, usually romance.  I also love detective stories, non-fiction and history.

I met my husband (who after many years of marriage is still my best friend and love of my life) at my first legal job, became a lawyer and a mother of four in ten action packed years. During those years we lived in the suburbs of the city. Recently, we moved back to Manhattan and I have fulfilled a lifelong dream of writing romance.

We have a very sweet, adopted cockapoo who has a way of getting treats from everyone in our family as well as everyone in our building.

The Marriage Ultimatum is the first of three loosely tied together tales of women and men who are either born in or travel to New York City to make their mark in the world. My hero Vlad and heroine Sabrina view the city as the place to transform their dreams into reality. At the moment they least expect, they meet and begin the journey to happily ever after.

For me, choosing New York City as the setting, with all of its energy and chaos, makes the city a character of each story. I chose a contemporary setting because it’s what I most like to read. The most difficult thing to me about writing this book or any book is the discipline of staying with it when life’s little and large interruptions happen. Sometimes it’s easy to get side tracked.

The hero and heroine in The Marriage Ultimatum came to me full force and I just started writing. Sabrina and Vlad are two New York strivers with every reason to distrust each other but who are instantly attracted to each other.

Are there any tricks, habits or superstitions you have when creating a story? Sit down and write. If the words won’t come, take a walk and then force yourself to write even if it’s stream of conscious.

What book have you read that you wish you had written? I’m a fan of so many books I couldn’t possibly choose one. The books that stay with you, that you don’t want to end, where the characters are so real you could reach out and touch them——those are the ones that I wish I had written. What’s helpful about having all of those favorites for me is that they have helped me find my unique voice, my place in the large world of writers.

Do you collect anything? I collect signs, large or small, of many materials, whether  wood or framed or ceramic that have some saying or blessing to do with HOME.

What do you want readers to come away with after they read The Marriage Ultimatum? First and foremost, I would hope that my book is a page turner, that my reader had a good escape from her or his usual life by coming into the world of my story. I would want them to realize that instant attraction doesn’t happen all the time but it is very real. I want them to see that when you peel beneath the layers of anyone, we all want the same thing: love and home.

Would you rather have a bad review or no review? No review or a review that is thoughtful but might have some constructive criticism. Personally, when I really don’t like a book, I don’t review it.

What genre have you never written that you’d like to write? Historical early American colonial period. I’m a total history nerd and that’s my favorite time period.

Are your characters based off real people or did they all come entirely from your imagination? The character of Sabrina was informed in part by some women I met as a lawyer. Women who are struggling to hold families together and feel beaten down and fearful of the system. From that point on every other character and the conflicts are all dreamed up by me.

How much of the book is realistic? Even with a contemporary romance I believe a larger than life aspect in the characters and the conflicts is essential for the escape into the story. Fantastic things happening in the lives of real but also flawed characters. It’s a tall order when you think of it and I’m still finding my way and trying to get it right.

How did your interest in writing originate? I’ve always written, notes, compositions, short stories. Always. It took me a while to want to share my writing with anyone else. I have also always wanted to paint. I dream in very vivid color.

Your favorite…

Movie The Terminator (the original)

Place you’ve visited: Italy and Ireland

Place you’d like to visit: Wyoming

TV show from adulthood Game of Thrones, VEEP

Sports team: Baseball (Yankees) and softball

Which do you prefer board games, card games or television?: I like cards and charades and anything interactive with people as opposed to a phone or a board.

Giveaway:

I welcome readers to come take a look at and sign up to my WordPress website charlotteoshayauthor.com for news about my upcoming release entitled A Model Engagement.

 I will gift a signed paperback of the Marriage Ultimatum to one person, chosen at random, who has signed up to my blog.

 

Thank you SO much for an interesting interview, Charlotte, and for the giveaway offer.  You DID pack a lot into ten years. 🙂 Sounds like a great life. And, thanks for the writing advice. I believe it’s the most important thing a writer can learn to practice. Now, please tell us about your book…

 

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Blurb:

Dead-end job? Dreary apartment? Disastrous love life? Check, check, and check. Toddler who makes it all worthwhile? Absolutely. Juggling work, college, and the care of young Alex was never Sabrina’s plan. But Sabrina’s dreams are bigger than any curve ball life can throw at her. Her top priority is keeping her small family together, no matter what the cost. Vladimir Grigory doesn’t believe in dreams. He earned his position at the top of New York’s corporate ladder with his own sweat. His empire is his baby, and he’ll destroy anyone who threatens it. Even the sexy employee who challenges him on every level. When the New York tabloids and the world call him the baby daddy of Sabrina’s son, Vlad believes Sabrina is part of a plot to expose the secrets of his past. He threatens to destroy her future. But since Sabrina has secrets of her own, she has no choice but to agree to Vlad’s marriage ultimatum.

Excerpt:

Once again, she passed through the gauntlet that was the VGI executive floor and kept her head up, gaze focused straight ahead. The whispers buzzed feverishly around the woman in the train wreck of an outfit as she strode down the corridor—this time with a toddler in a stroller.

“Ms. Boyd,” his assistant stepped in front of her, guarding the domain of the boss like a rabid pit bull, “you can’t—”

Sabrina looked her straight in the eye. That was what you did to make a dog back down. Or was that what made a dog attack? She couldn’t remember, and she didn’t care.

“I’m not leaving, so you might as well move before I shout this place down.”

There was steel in Sabrina’s tone, and her voice was pitched loud enough for the hapless woman to know that she couldn’t care less who heard.

The assistant stepped aside. “Now this should be interesting,” she muttered.

She shoved the door open and pushed the stroller inside as if she did it every day of the week, then nudged the door shut with her elbow. “It’s not gonna be that easy to get rid of me.”

“I get the feeling nothing is easy with you,” he said.

Buy the book here:

amazon.com/author/charlotteoshayauthor.com

The Wild Rose Press: http://catalog.thewildrosepress.com/all-titles/4358-the-marriage-ultimatum.html

ISBN(s) 978-1-5092-0814-2 Paperback

978-1-5092-0815-9 Digital

Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/Marriage-Ultimatum-City-Dreams-ebook/dp/B01FCBBAMI

ASIN: B01FCBBAMI

https://www.amazon.com/Marriage-Ultimatum-City-Dreams-ebook/dp/B01FCBBAMI

Kobo: ISBN: 10:1509208151

ISBN: 13: 9781509208159

https://store.kobobooks.com/en-us/ebook/the-marriage-ultimatum-4

Barnes & Noble: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/the-marriage-ultimatum-charlotte-oshay/1123790857/

ISBN-13: 2940158185540

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Find Charlotte here:

Website: (wordpress)               http://charlotteoshayauthor.com

Facebook: Charlotte O’Shay   http://facebook.com/charlotteoshayauthor

Twitter: @charlotte_oshay      http://twitter.com/charlotte_oshay

Instagram: charlotte_oshay_author

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Sizzling Suspense ~ Body Heat by Adam Mann

Please help me welcome today’s guest, Adam Mann who is sharing a hot romantic suspense!

 

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Blurb:

Jennifer, an accountant in Thailand, watches a television programme about two strangers, a man and woman, who spend twenty one days in a remote area with only a machete and a flint between them.  They have no clothes, food or water but have to survive.  They build their shelter, find food and water. 

Jennifer lives in Bangkok and gets cross when the man on the TV programme who stupidly refuses to work in cooperation with the woman!

She challenges some of her friends on the social media network, determined that she could to a better job than either of the contestants, and her challenge is accepted by a farmer, Charles, living near in East London in South Africa.

They see what each other looks like from the photos on Twitter, and they exchange backgrounds.  They start planning their adventure, and try their hardest not to cheat, but they have no back-up team and have to organise everything themselves, and initially without their families knowing.

She has just recovered from a divorce, and he is single, and they chose a remote area in the highlands between Thailand and Laos. 

The remote area randomly chosen by them does provide them with a small stream and a variety of plants and vegetables.  Charlie manages to catch a fish and they both use the local resources based on their life experiences, but neither is a survival specialist.

It is fortunate that they liked one another, but the trouble starts as they begin to fall in love.

 

Excerpt:

Perhaps the best way to describe the ending to this novel is the final paragraph;

“This is akin to paradise, darling,” she said as they swam together in the warm sea close to Charlie’s house, “I’ve got a baby coming, a wedding ring, and a husband and soon I’ll get an engagement ring.  It doesn’t really matter if they were in the wrong order!  And the honeymoon came first!”

Amazon Buy page:

https://amzn.com/B015YKQW66

 

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Bio

Adam Mann has written twenty four romance books all based in parts of the world where he has lived and worked.  As a result five are in sub-Saharan Africa, eleven are in South or East Asia, and only seven based in the UK.  One is still in draft form.

Adam has been married four times, his first wife died, the second divorced him, the third marriage was annulled as that wife had forgotten to get divorced, and the fourth wife is fit and well.  They have between them seven children and four grandchildren.  As a result Adam thinks he knows a bit about life and loving.

Adam has lived and worked in Vietnam since 1997, where he lives in a provincial city with his wife, and has constant stream of visitors from the families of their seven adult children.

 

Find Adam here:

Website:     www.adammannauthor.com

Twitter:       @adammannauthor

FB:              https://www.facebook.com/author/adammannauthor.com

Email:         adammannauthor@gmail.com

 

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Constance Walker ~ Author Interview & New Release: Lost Roses of Ganymede House

Please help me welcome today’s guest, Constance Walker, who is sharing a little about herself and her brand new release. It’s a gothic mystery, which I love!

 

  1. Where did you get the idea for Lost Roses of Ganymede House?

One afternoon I was driving over a bridge and I saw this beautiful stone mansion sitting on a cliff overlooking a river and I was intrigued with it.  I wondered who lived there and for how long and who they were and what kind of family it was and if it was a happy household and one thought led to another and — you know how you used to play the “what if?” game when you were younger?  Well, I began playing that game in my mind: “What if the house was overlooking a sea in rural England?  What if it was in Victorian times?”  And then, “What if that beautiful house was haunted and had a ghost and who was the ghost and why was it there?” And by the end of the drive I had the premise for a Gothic mystery. 

The title?  Roses – the scent of them – is a feature of the book so I knew that had to be part of it.  And I have always had a fascination with the planet Jupiter – don’t ask me why because I can’t really tell you — and I took one of its moons – Ganymede – and named the house after it.  And somehow it all worked and I had my title, Lost Roses of Ganymede House. 

  1. Are there any tricks or habits you use when creating a story?

When I write, I sometimes speak the words out loud as I’m typing.  It helps me with the grammar and punctuation and also catches any awkward phrases, etc.  Jake, my wonderful/fantastic 12-year old rescued hound/shepherd sits beside my desk and he’ll look up at me as though he’s also critiquing, but he never offers an alternative.  All he wants is another treat. 

  1. What book have you read that you wish you would have written?

Not a book but a movie script.  THE WAY WE WERE.  I absolutely loved that screenplay and I’ve seen the movie a dozen times and each time I am so impressed with the writing and the concept.  And even though it had a bittersweet ending, it was a great romance.

  1. What is one word you would use to describe yourself?

“Loyal.”  Once you’re included into my family or are my friend then that’s it!  It’s a bond for life.

What is one word you think others might use to describe you? 

“Tenacious.”  I’ll fight forever for people, animals, causes – anything that will make life a little better for everyone on this earth.  I joke that my parents must have known what kind of person I would be and named me Constance – it means steadfast, never yielding.    

  1. What’s your favorite book of all time and why?

It’s an old non-fiction book I discovered many years ago, SERENADE TO THE BIG BIRD.  It was written during the Second World War by Bert Stiles, an Army Air Force bomber pilot.  It may have been one of the first non-fiction books I ever read and I was completely blown away by the way he wrote about his experiences and his outlook on life and war and peace.  It was published posthumously – he went down with his plane during an air battle.  I’ve mentioned the book several times to other writers and I’m always amazed that someone has also read it and considers it to be one of the best non-fiction books they’ve read.   

  1. What do you want readers to come away with after they read Lost Roses of Ganymede House?

A sense of enjoyment, of caring about the characters and the storyline and a good feeling about having spent their time reading the book.  When I get reviews from readers on Facebook or Goodreads who write that they loved the book so much that they wished it never ended … that’s the ultimate praise.  And that’s when I really do say “thank you” out loud and want to sit down and write another book immediately.   

 

Thank you! I enjoyed the interview. And now, please tell us about your book…

 

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Blurb:  

“There, Miss, that be Ganymede House in the distance,” says the driver of her carriage as newly impoverished Sarah Scott gets her first glimpse of the magnificent house in Yorkshire, England, where she will live as tutor for the two children of widower Oliver Grayson.  But, unknown to the young woman, she is about to venture into a bleak home where the children are silent, the master morose, the servants suspicious and the family history forbidding.

And, as she begins to take on the responsibility for the children’s education, Sarah finds herself caught up in the hostile spirit that permeates Ganymede–the portrait of Oliver’s wife, Rosamunda, that is locked away in an unused bedroom; the mysterious scent of roses in rooms where no one has entered; the mystery surrounding Rosamunda’s death and the banishment of the mother’s imprint on the children and the manor.  Slowly Sarah comes to realize that evil inhabits the house and that she no longer is an outsider to the family–what stalks and touches Ganymede now touches her.

Buy Link:

http://www.amazon.com/Roses-Ganymede-House-Constance-Walker-ebook/dp/B01CH1KSL0/ref=sr_1_2?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1457053716&sr=1-2&keywords=LOST+ROSES+OF+GANYMEDE+HOUSE

Author Bio: Constance Walker is the author of Gothic mysteries, paranormal and contemporary romance fiction, and is currently working on a novel about senior citizens.  You can contact her at her in-the-process-of revising-her web site,

WWW.CONSTANCEWALKER.COM  or at her Goodreads Author page:

https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/2090408.Constance_Walker

 

 

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