Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Interview with romantic suspense author Catherine Castle

I’m shining the spotlight on romantic suspense author Catherine Castle today. She’s touring her novel, The Nun and the Narc with Goddess Fish Promotions.

Catherine will be awarding a $25 Amazon gift card to a randomly drawn commenter between this tour and her Name Before the Masses tour. To be entered for a chance to win, leave a comment below. To increase your chances of winning, feel free to visit other tour stops (of either tour) and leave comments there, too. 

Catherine Castle has been writing all her life. Before beginning her career as a romance writer she worked part-time as a freelance writer. She has over 600 articles and photographs to her credit, under her real name, in the Christian and secular market. Besides writing, Catherine loves traveling with her husband, singing, and attending theatre. In the winter she loves to quilt and has a lot of UFOs (unfinished objects) in her sewing case. In the summer her favorite place to be is in her garden. She’s passionate about gardening and even won a “Best Hillside Garden” award from the local gardening club.

Her debut inspiration romantic suspense, The Nun and the Narc, from Soul Mate Publishing was an ACFW Genesis Finalist and is a 2013 EPIC finalist.

Welcome, Catherine. Please tell us about your current release.
The Nun and the Narc is an inspirational suspense romance about a novice who gets caught up in a drug deal when she tries to stop it. Sister Margaret Mary is a bit stubborn, and perhaps not the best nun material, according to Mother Superior, but she’s determined to follow her commitment to take her final vows. Then while on a house building mission to Mexico, she gets captured by drug lords and imprisoned with undercover DEA agent Jed Bond. Sparks fly between the two and destinies are changed.

What inspired you to write this book?
This book was begun as a contest entry for the Dixie Contest. I wanted to write an inspirational romance and thought I’d try and get some feedback by using a contest to see how readers responded to the first few chapters. I wanted to do something different than the inspirational romances I had read, something outside the norm. After a false start where my heroine was a missionary, not a nun, the book found its true form when one of my critique partners suggested I turn the heroine into a nun. I did, and the book started writing itself. I only had a few chapters finished when I submitted it to the contest, but was compelled to finish it.

Excerpt from The Nun and the Narc:
“Why don’t you tell me, Miss . . . whoever you are?”

“Margaret Mary O’Connor. Sis—“ Her introduction changed into a scream. “Look out!”

Jed’s head whipped around just as the car plowed through a market stand of live chickens. Poultry, wooden cages, and feathers scattered over the car. An angry hen dropped through the car’s open sunroof, squawking and flapping in front of Jed, beating his head with its wings.

Margaret reached over, grabbed the bird, and threw it back out the sunroof opening. But it was too late. The car glanced off an adobe wall into a second market stand and careened toward another building. Jed jammed on the brakes. The car spun three hundred and sixty degrees before screeching to a stop.

The impact threw Margaret sideways against the passenger window. She hit her head on the glass, the blow blinding her for a second. Jed’s body slammed into the steering wheel setting off the horn. The wail echoed in Margaret’s head as she struggled to remain conscious. Warmth trickled down the side of her head. Margaret managed to focus her eyes as the noise stopped. Two Jeds leaned toward her, in slow motion. She blinked to clear her vision.

“You all right?” he asked.

“I think so.” Something warm and sticky seeped down her face. She reached up and wiped her temple. “I’m bleeding,” she said as she stared at her fingers. The words sounded slurred. At the sight of the blood on her fingers, her stomach rolled.

What exciting story are you working on next?
One of the problems with having several partially finished manuscripts is deciding what you will be working on next. I have a sweet, romantic comedy in the wings and a sweet romantic suspense that are partially finished, an inspirational historical romance and I just came up with an idea for two more books. I like to work on more than one project at a time. It keeps things fresh.

When did you first consider yourself a writer?
I’ve always written. As a teen it was poems and sappy romances, and sci-fi/fantasy short stories. In the 90s I began writing for a local newspaper, getting bylines and getting paid to write. That first byline convinced me I could do more than write for my own enjoyment. I haven’t looked back since.

Do you write full-time? If so, what's your work day like? If not, what do you do other than write and how do you find time to write?
Even when I was a journalist my writing was part-time. When I stopped working for other editors, I set one or two days aside to work on my fiction. Nothing interfered with those days. Family and friends knew if they called I would not answer the phone. Now, it’s more of a tyranny of the urgent. If I have a deadline I will write all day, every day until it’s done. If no deadline looms, I’ll take care of home things, work in my garden, or be with the hubby. I do have to stop by 7 p.m. though, because I’ve discovered that if I write too late at night, I end up pulling an all-nighter. That gets harder as I get older because insomnia is hard on one’s health.

What would you say is your interesting writing quirk?
I usually find my title first, and write the book blurb before I start writing the books.

As a child, what did you want to be when you grew up?
A singer. It was my only career choice. Now I wish I had realized I could have made a career of writing, but like most youths, I was short-sighted.

Anything additional you want to share with the readers?
The Nun and the Narc is a finalist in the EPIC contest in the action/adventure romance category. I’m very excited and pleased to be included in this prestigious contest.

E-book at Amazon

Print version: Amazon | Barnes and Noble

Thanks, Catherine! Readers, don't forget to leave a comment if you'd like a chance to win the gift card.


Goddess Fish Promotions said...

Thanks for hosting!

Anonymous said...

I look forward to reading this!

Catherine Castle said...

Thanks for hosting me today.

Catherine Castle said...

Hi Sarah. I hope you'll like the book. It's been labeled as a fun read. Thanks for coming by.

Rita Wray said...

I enjoyed the interview, thank you.

Catherine Castle said...

Hi, Rita. Thanks for stopping by today. I hope you've learned something new about me today from this interview.

denise smith said...

book sounds great thanks so much

Joanne Guidoccio said...

Excellent interview and excerpt, Catherine. Best of luck at EPIC.

Catherine Castle said...

I'm glad you think the book sounds great. It's a fun read, according to reviewers. Thanks for stopping by.

Catherine Castle said...

Hi, Joanne. Thanks so much for your support and the best wishes for EPIC. I'm keeping my fingers crossed. But if I don't win, it's still a privilege to be a finalist in such a prestigious contest.

bn100 said...

Interesting writing quirk

bn100candg at hotmail dot com

Catherine Castle said...

BN, It's a little backwards, I know, writing the blurb first, but something about doing it that way sparks my interest. I figure if it interests me, maybe it will interest a potential reader, too. Thanks for the comment.

Natasha said...

Sounds like a great read!!
Thanks for the chance to win!
natasha_donohoo_8 at hotmail dot com

Unknown said...

Interesting interview. Thx for sharing

Catherine Castle said...

Natasha, Thanks for coming by so many of my tour spots. I appreciate the following. Hope you like the book.

Catherine Castle said...

Elise, I'm glad you found the interview interesting. Thanks for commenting.