Wednesday, July 31, 2019

Interview with mystery author Jane Renshaw

Mystery novelist Jane Renshaw is here today and we’re chatting about The Sweetest Poison.

During her virtual book tour, Jane will be awarding a $25 Amazon or Barnes and Noble (winner’s choice) gift card. To be entered for a chance to win, use the form below. To increase your chances of winning, feel free to visit her other tour stops and enter there, too!

Having discovered early in her 'career' that she didn't have what it takes to be a scientist, Jane Renshaw shuffled sideways into scientific and medical editing, which has the big advantage that she can do it while watching Bargain Hunt! Jane writes what she loves to read – series of novels in which the reader can immerse herself, which let her get to know an engaging, interesting and/or terrifying cast of characters slowly, in the same way you get to know people in real life. Ideally, the drama should be played out in a gorgeous setting, and the cast should include at least one dangerously charismatic, witty, outrageous protagonist with whom the reader can fall in love. A bit of murder and mayhem in the mix never hurts either... Hence the Pitfourie Series.

Please share a little bit about your current release.
When she was eight years old, Helen Clack was bullied so mercilessly that she was driven to a desperate act. Now she is being targeted once more, but this time her tormentor’s identity is shrouded in doubt.

When her life starts to disintegrate, she flees home to the wilds of north-east Scotland, and to the one man she knows can help her – Hector Forbes, the dubiously charismatic Laird of Pitfourie, with whom she has been hopelessly in love ever since those hellish days in the school playground, when he was her protector, her rescuer, her eleven-year-old hero.

But is Hector really someone she can trust?

And can anyone protect her from the terrible secret she’s keeping?

What inspired you to write this book?
To be honest, I’m mainly inspired not by anything in the real world but by reading, by immersing myself in books in which I can fall in love with the characters, and be desperate to know what happens to them. The characters have to be complicated and three-dimensional and do interesting/alarming/funny things, but also have interesting/alarming/funny conversations. Ideally, one of them should contrive to be murdered. In my writing, I’m trying to create that sort of experience for other readers.

Of all the writers who inspire me, Dorothy Dunnett has to be at the top of the list. I always feel bereft when I finish the Lymond Chronicles for the umpteenth time!

Excerpt from The Sweetest Poison:
Helen looked up at the tree. There were plenty of pods hanging down from it, like peapods only skinnier.
How many would she need?
Yesterday when she was helping Daddy with the bales she had asked him, ‘How many laburnum seeds would someone have to eat before they died?’ and he’d shaken his head and said, ‘Hel’nie. You mustn’t ever take seeds from that tree,’ and she’d said, ‘I won’t. But how many would someone have to eat?’ and he’d shaken his head and said, ‘I don’t know, and I’m not just awful keen to find out.’
Helen wriggled her schoolbag off her back and dropped it down on the grass.
No one would see. The byre was between the tree and the kitchen window, and Daddy had gone up the fields to look at the calfies.
To reach the pods she would have to climb up on the fence, but Suzanne had shown her how to climb on barbed wire. She put one hand on the fence post under the tree, and one hand on the top wire, and climbed with her bum sticking out to keep her legs away from the jags. The wires were wobbly but she didn’t fall off. When she was high enough she let go the hand on the fence post and reached up and grabbed one of the pods.
It was as if the branch didn’t want to let go.
When they were little, Suzanne used to say peas were the pea plant’s children, and the peapod was a coat it had made for them, and when you ate peas you were eating the children. Even when she was little Helen hadn’t actually believed that, but now she couldn’t help thinking that the seeds were the tree’s children.
It had plenty though.
She leant out away from the fence so she could pull better, and the branch stretched and stretched but then it suddenly let go and flapped back. Helen grabbed the post.
She didn’t fall.
She could see the bumps of the seeds inside the pod. There were six.
Would that be enough?

What exciting story are you working on next?
At the moment I’m working on Book 2 in the series: Bad Company.

It’s winter at Pitfourie, and undercover policewoman Claire Castleford arrives from London to investigate the suspicious death of a colleague – inadequately supplied with thermal underwear and insufficiently forewarned about certain aspects of the suspect’s character. She’s falling for the bastard. To add to her problems, she’s trying to pass herself off as a housekeeper at the domestic goddess end of the spectrum, but has spent her whole life resisting domestication in all its forms.

She’s not letting that worry her, though.

How hard can it be to boil an egg?

When did you first consider yourself a writer?
I remember the moment vividly. I was watching TV when the phone rang (this was in the days of landlines!) and a husky voice introduced herself as one of the agents at the top of my list (not sure if I should say who), who’d read the opening chapter of The Sweetest Poison (which was then called Natural Victim) and loved it! I was so scared and excited I wasn’t able to respond coherently. I babbled about hoping she wasn’t disappointed with the rest of the book, and her response was: ‘Even if there are problems, don’t worry, because YOU ARE A WRITER.’ Ironically, there were problems with the rest of the book, and I ended up putting it in a drawer for a long time (writer, huh?), until I reworked it and sent it out again and another agent picked it up... But I’ll never forget that moment, and will always be grateful for the first agent’s reassurance and encouragement.

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?
No, I’m not lucky enough to write full-time. I need to pay the bills! I work part-time as a freelance copy editor and am also involved in caring for a family member. It’s quite hard to find time to write, and days or weeks can go by without much progress. When I am in writing mode, I find it easiest to be productive in the mornings. Sometimes it’s hard to get into a scene, but other times I’m suddenly ‘in the zone’ and seeing the action playing out in my mind’s eye. It’s a bit like watching a film, but having complete directorial control.

What would you say is your interesting writing quirk?
I don’t know about interesting, but I find that bribing myself with online games works well. ‘Just get to the end of this scene,’ I tell myself, ‘and you can play a game of Tetris!’

As a child, what did you want to be when you grew up?
An intrepid zoologist exploring the Amazon Basin! I did end up studying biology, but that’s as close as I got. Now I get my zoology kicks from watching birds in the garden. Not quite the Amazon, but I love getting to know them as individual characters. Bertie the robin even comes to my hand for food!

Anything additional you want to share with the readers?
Please take a look at my writing friends’ stuff:

Lucy Lawrie, writer of Tiny Acts of Love (The Sun: ‘funny, poignant and honest’) and The Last Day I Saw Her (This Chick Reads: ‘No wonder I devoured this book in one day, everything about it is brilliant’)

Lesley McLaren, nature writer extraordinaire:

Oh, and I would love to hear from any readers who would like to get in touch via my website.


Thank you for being a guest on my blog!
Thank you for having me!

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Monday, July 29, 2019

Interview with suspense/thriller author R. Scott Wallis

Author R. Scott Wallis joins me today to chat about his new suspense/thriller, The Maine Nemesis.

During his virtual book tour, R. Scott will be awarding a $50 Amazon or Barnes and Noble (winner’s choice) gift card to a lucky randomly drawn winner. To be entered for a chance to win, use the form below. To increase your chances of winning, feel free to visit his other tour stops and enter there, too!

R. Scott Wallis is endlessly inspired by his surroundings and adventures. And he thrives on new chapters and creating unique projects to keep himself out of trouble. Scott started his working life as an advance person and assistant to a sitting United States Vice President. Later, he served as the creative director for a leading Washington think tank. That led to working directly for one of the richest men on Earth, conceiving and executing exclusive events for his billionaire friends. Tired of working for the man, Scott became a top-rated pop-culture podcaster and celebrity interviewer, while also dabbling in both the worlds of clothing manufacturing (creating his own baby clothes brand that was sold in over 300 stores nationwide) and retail sales, with his own well-received men's clothing store.

Always willing to lend a hand or donate what he can, he's an enthusiastic philanthropist, championing causes such as childhood bullying, animal adoption, and feeding the less fortunate. A wide-eyed world traveler, Scott has been to four continents, mostly by sea. While he loves exploring Europe and the Caribbean islands, it's the vast United States that he likes best. He's been to Alaska four times, Hawaii twice, and can't wait to explore the eight states he hasn't been to yet. Technically a Connecticut Yankee, Scott grew up in historic Williamsburg, Virginia, and lived for 25 years in the Washington, D.C. area, before recently discovering that the American West is where he is most at home. He lives in Las Vegas, Nevada.

Please share a little bit about your current release.
The Maine Nemesis is the first book in my new Skyler Moore Thriller series. It follows the adventures of public relations hotshot Skyler Moore and her best friend—celebrity chef Brenda Braxton—during a summer vacation in their hometown of Wabanaki, on the southern coast of Maine. And as is the norm on Skyler’s travels, mayhem ensues. Women are dropping dead in the sleepy town where nothing ever happens, and it’s up to Skyler and friends to save the town they love so much.

What inspired you to write this book?
It started with my love for Maine. All my aunts and uncles live there, and I spent a great deal of time on the southern coast, and in the central lake region, during my childhood. Maine summers are quite magical, complete with picturesque old houses, endless lobster rolls, and chilly summer evenings. I just knew from the get-go that Skyler had to be from my favorite state and begin her journey there.

And although they are middle-age women in my novels, in the Prologue, we get a glimpse of their fictional town of Wabanaki, and how my two heroines first met as children:

Excerpt from Prologue of The Maine Nemesis:
During one typically mild Maine summer, slightly more than a few decades ago, while the United States of America was celebrating the anniversary of its independence from England, fifth-grader Skyler Elizabeth Moore was celebrating her freedom from being the only little girl on her street. While she got along fine with most of the kids in her class, she’d not yet made a best friend—besides her beloved Raggedy Ann doll—so when Brenda Braxton, along with her brother and aunt, moved into the white clapboard house diagonally across the street, Skyler made it her mission to show the new girl around their tiny New England town in order to win her friendship.
There were only a handful of houses on the street and most of them were only used in the summer, making for a very sleepy, almost ghost town-like existence for a pre-teen girl during the school year. Skyler would stare into the houses’ dark windows as she walked to school, trying to catch a glimpse of something moving inside. A forgotten cat. A caretaker. Even a ghost. She believed in them and was certain that big old empty houses were where they lived.
When the biting winter winds that came off the ocean turned soothingly cool and the town sprung back to life after Memorial Day, Skyler would get her hopes up that a new family—with kids her age—would magically appear on the block. Specifically, a girl. So, when she finally spotted one that early July day, she wasted no time.
The moving truck was still in front of the house on the corner, and even though her mother told her to wait until the family settled in, Skyler marched herself to the open door and stepped into the front hall. She scooted to the left to avoid getting hit by a couch that two large men lifted through the doorway and then she followed them into the living room.
There she was. A girl her own age, sitting on a moving box, eating a banana.
“My mom would be very proud,” she said when she noticed Skyler. “She was always pushing fruit on me.”
“I love bananas,” Skyler lied as she moved closer. “I’m Skyler. I live across the street.”
“I’m Brenda. And I guess I live here now.”
“Welcome to Wabanaki.”
“Such a weird name for a town.”
“It’s named after an Indian tribe. American Indian, not India Indian.”
“I’ll never be able to spell it.”
“I’m good at spelling. It’s easy. W.A.B.A.N.A.K.I. Wabanaki. Almost like banana with all the A’s after the letters.”
“I guess. Did you just let yourself in?”
“I did. Is that okay with your mother?”
“I’m sure she doesn’t care. I’m glad you came in.”
“Me, too.” Skyler couldn’t stop smiling. “Me, too.”
Skyler noticed that Brenda was a little on the heavy side with a roll of fat around her middle that peeked out between her shirt and shorts, but it didn’t faze her. Brenda had a hearty, infectious laugh and positive attitude despite what Skyler would come to understand was an arduous childhood. Her homework could have been eaten by the dog, or the vacation she was looking forward to could have been cancelled at the last minute, and she’d always manage to find the silver lining. Brenda’s attitude would balance well with Skyler’s sometimes dark outlook on life.

What exciting story are you working on next?
I released the second book in the series, The New Mexico Scoundrel, this past May, and I just sent the third, The Nevada Saboteur, to my editor. It comes out on September 27. I have plans for three more Skyler books in 2020, that will take my new friends to Alaska, California, and Virginia. I also have a thriller called, Scout’s Honor: Lifeline, coming out on August 23. (Yes, I’m exhausted, but excited!)

When did you first consider yourself a writer?
From the very beginning. As soon as I started to learn to read and write, I started making up my own stories. My mother has always said that I thought in cartoons; I guess I had a pretty active imagination. I’ve always loved making things up and putting those creations together with the people and places I have come to know in my real life. I’ve traveled extensively, and I’ve met many interesting characters along the way. They all make it into my stories on way or another.

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?
Writing and podcasting are my full-time jobs. I like to write first thing in the morning, so I get up with the sun—and the dogs—and sit at my desk and write from about 6:00am until about 10:00am every single day. I save emails and marketing my books—that’s an independent writers second full-time job, mind you—for the afternoon. I never touch my computer or my phone in the evenings, unless I get a thought or idea for one of my stories, then I’ll make a quick note so that I don’t forget it. I produce the pop culture podcast, The Swish Edition, on the weekends. I love to talk about as much as I love to write, and my silly little show has reached the top 2% of comedy podcasts on iTunes. Now I just wish I could get to the top 2% of Amazon with my books!

What would you say is your interesting writing quirk?
I don’t know if it’s a quirk or not, but my absolute favorite thing to write is dialogue. Perhaps I was supposed to be a screenwriter? In any event, I tend to let my characters tell the story with their speech. I don’t do a lot of describing how people look, either. I’d rather let the reader decide, in their own head, what someone looks like. For example, I have ideas about which Hollywood actors and actresses should play my characters in the eventual movies (wishful thinking, huh?), but I would never, ever tell anyone who they are. I wouldn’t want to ruin someone else’s idea of who Skyler, Brenda, at al, are.

As a child, what did you want to be when you grew up?
Rich. I think I thought that was a job. I used to love television shows like “Dallas” and “Dynasty” and just knew that I had to have gobs of money, too, to be happy. Of course, it helps, but I quickly realized that loving what you do and who you are, are much more important. That, and private jets. Private jets will always make you happy.

Anything additional you want to share with the readers?
I’m just over-the-moon that people are excited to read my books. It tickles me to no end. When you put hundreds and hundreds of hours into something that you created from scratch, and then people discover it, and like it, well, that’s just the icing on the cake. I mean, two different books clubs are reading and discussing MY books this summer. I never thought something like that would happen to little ol’ me. It’s a dream come true. Now all I need is that darned private jet!


Thank you for being a guest on my blog!

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Wednesday, July 24, 2019

New interview with paranormal romance author Maya Tyler

Novelist Maya Tyler is back in the hot seat today to chat about her new paranormal romance, A Wizard’s Choice.

She was last here in April 2017 to chat about A Vampire’s Tale.

During her virtual book tour, Maya will be awarding a $25 Amazon or Barnes and Noble (winner’s choice) gift card to a luck randomly drawn winner. To be entered for a chance to win, use the form below. To increase your chances of winning, feel free to visit her other tour stops and enter there, too!

Maya Tyler is a multi-published author of paranormal romance novels and blogger at Maya’s Musings. An avid reader, Maya writes the books she loves to read—romances! She still believes that “True Love's Kiss” is the most powerful thing in the world. Her paranormal romances come with complex plot twists and happily-ever-afters.

When she’s not writing, she enjoys reading, listening to music (alternative rock, especially from the 1990s), practicing yoga, and watching movies and TV.

Welcome back to Reviews and Interviews, Maya! Please tell us about your newest release.
A Wizard’s Choice follows wizard apprentice Kurtis Warde, a character introduced in A Vampire’s Tale. Although it is the second book in a series, it can be read as a standalone.

Kurtis’ parents abandoned him as a baby, and his grandfather raised him. Becoming a full-fledged wizard is more of an obligation to his grandfather than a true career aspiration. He wants the freedom to choose his own path and perhaps find love.

Other forces—an ancient wizard-fairy feud and a secret from his past—are in play and threaten Kurtis’ choices and his life.

What inspired you to write this book?
As children, we owe a lot to our parents, but when do their dreams end and ours begin? When do you break out from underneath their expectations and stake claim to your own life?

In A Wizard’s Choice, I explore this theme as several characters have conflicts between their familial expectations and their dreams. Kurtis is becoming a wizard to please his grandfather. Another character, Alina Lehrer, is contemplating an arranged marriage to please her parents.

Excerpt from A Wizard’s Choice:
Something sharp poked him in the arm. Keeping his eyes closed, he batted the culprit—probably an insect looking for its breakfast—away. It poked him again, jabbing a little deeper.

“Go away.” Kurtis plopped his pillow over his face.

In a sudden, fluid motion, his bedding—sheets, comforter, and pillows—flew off his bed. He found himself laid on a bare mattress, staring at a black magic wand, suspended in mid-air.

“Whoa, whoa, whoa.” He raised his hands, careful not to make any sudden moves. Who owns this wand? Friend or foe? The wand had no equal, finely made from black walnut tree wood with a smooth and plain handle sandwiched between corkscrew-like carvings. The body tapered neatly to a dull point. The wand turned in the air, and Kurtis saw the distinctive “W” of his family crest engraved into the tip of the tenon. Waldor’s wand.

Like a compass needle, the wand pointed its desired direction. Unsanctioned movement was highly unusual behavior for a wand. But no stranger than anything else that happened in the last few days. He shrugged and followed the wand. It led him into the basement to the Spell Laboratory.

After a quick glance around the room, Kurtis determined nothing had changed. Nothing stood out as noteworthy. He glared at the wand. “If this wild goose chase is your idea of fun, then I’m going back to bed.”

Ignoring Kurtis’ threat—as if a wand could respond—it floated toward the far wall and rammed itself into a stone brick. An entire section of the wall rescinded, revealing a hidden passage.

“What?” His mouth gaped open. “How did I miss this?”

The wand disappeared into the now exposed hallway.

“Wait for me.” I can’t believe I’m talking to a wand.

What’s the next writing project?
This summer, I’m participating in a writing contest on the app Chapters: Interactive Stories. My story is called Duet at Midnight. The premise is a reverse Cinderella story with an older brother falling for a pop princess.

I’m posting Duet at Midnight one chapter at a time directly on the app which is a new experience for me.

What is your biggest challenge when writing a new book? (or the biggest challenge with this book)
My biggest writing challenge occurs when I get so far into the story…and then I get stuck. It’s a bit like writer’s block, except I’m only missing the piece in the middle. I ask myself, “What can I add to move the plot forward?” My husband often helps me brainstorm.

If your novels require research – please talk about the process. Do you do the research first and then write, while you’re writing, after the novel is complete and you need to fill in the gaps?
My novels usually require research. From street names to subway stops, I check my facts. I do research before and during the writing process. I bookmark websites I’ve used as references and make handwritten notes as well.

In addition to fact checking, I also look up the meanings of my character names and often select names based on origin and meaning.

What’s your writing space like? Do you have a particular spot to write where the muse is more active? Please tell us about it.
In my house full of boys, I needed to have a feminine retreat. A place to escape the Star Wars shower curtain in the main bathroom and the Lego Star Wars battle scene hanging from the rec room ceiling. My solution? I have a lovely purple office. It’s a small space, but I’ve used every inch efficiently. I have three tall white bookshelves, of varying widths, and a white cabinet with half-glass doors. Over my desk, which is a white slab resting on white filing cabinets, I have two hanging box shelves. Before we went shopping at Ikea, I hadn’t planned on buying white furniture, but the end result is quite charming.

My office is my all-season writing room. During the non-winter months, I also spend a lot of time writing outside in my gazebo. About three years ago, we purchased a large gazebo with netting and heavy curtains. We furnished it with a wicker loveseat, chair and ottoman, and rocking chair. We added a fire table—that never worked—at least it’s pretty. We bought a cedar folding table and chairs set. We picked up a large rug and some wall hangings. And we called it the family room. When it’s not my writing space, we play board games and eat meals there.

What authors do you enjoy reading within or outside of your genre?
I love reading, and I have so many favorite authors. I read mainly romance in the subgenres of paranormal/fantasy and historical.

I recently found a new favorite, based on the recommendation of a friend, Sarah J. Maas, author of A Court of Thorns and Roses Series. When I read A Court of Thorns and Roses (Book 1), I could hardly put it down.

Anything additional you want to share with the readers today?
I love to hear from fellow authors and readers! Please connect with me through social media (see links below) or the contact form on my website.

Buy Links
A Vampire’s Tale: Amazon | Smashwords | Apple | Kobo | Barnes and Noble
A Wizard’s Choice on Amazon

Thanks for having me here today!

Absolutely my pleasure. Thank you for coming back to Reviews and Interviews!

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Thursday, July 11, 2019

Interview with history and romance novelist Pamela Gibson

I’m happy to welcome novelist Pamela Gibson here today. She and I are chatting about her new Regency historical, Scandal’s Bride.

During her virtual book tour, Pamela will be giving away a $20 Amazon or Barnes and Noble (winner’s choice) gift card to a lucky randomly drawn winner. To be entered for a chance to win, use the form below. To increase your chances of winning, feel free to visit her other tour stops and enter there, too!

Author of eight books on California history and twelve romance novels, Pamela Gibson is a former City Manager who lives in the Nevada desert. Having spent the last three years messing about in boats, a hobby that included a five-thousand-mile trip in a 32-foot Nordic Tug, she now spends most of her time indoors happily reading, writing, cooking and keeping up with the antics of her gran-cats, gran-dog, and gran-fish. Sadly, the gran-lizard went to his final reward. If you want to learn more about her activities go to and sign up for her blog and quarterly newsletter.

Welcome, Pamela. Please share a little bit about your current release.
Scandal’s Bride is the sequel to Scandal’s Child and follows the story of characters introduced in the first book. Lady Gwendolyn Pettigrew needs a husband and it won’t be the old rake her father has chosen. John Montague needs a wife with a dowry, but is sure no one will want to marry a penniless second son. When it’s suggested by the characters in the first book that they could solve each other’s problem, they agree to a marriage of convenience with certain stipulations. It seems perfect, until they discover there’s a catch. Gwen treasures the independence she’s been promised, but she also wants to be a mother. John, who spent months researching mental illness and looking for a suitable place to care for his deranged mother, does not want to bring children into the world. He believes madness may be inherited and after the horrors he’s witnessed, he refuses to take a chance. As the characters become friends and gain each other’s trust, their mutual attraction also grows. This becomes a major conflict in the book as their sexual tension is set among secrets and lies while battling an outside force that wants them to abandon their home in Yorkshire and return to London.

What inspired you to write this book?
This is my second Regency novel. The first was Scandal’s Child, intended to be a standalone. But while writing the epilogue an idea began to take form about a book for Lady Gwendolyn, a friend of the heroine in the first book. I also wanted to bring back the younger brother of the hero in the first book. I had planted a few seeds that could sprout into an intriguing plot. Scandal’s Bride was the result.

Excerpt from Scandal’s Bride:
He removed his waistcoat, laying it over the topcoat, and sat down opposite Gwen. “Gwen . . .”


They both laughed, and it was a good feeling. He drained his wine glass. “Drink up. I want to talk to you before we retire.”

Her eyes widened, and her breath seemed to catch. Was she feeling faint? He certainly was. Why had he left this so long? Most people consummated their marriage the first night.

She picked up her glass and took a hefty swallow. Her cheeks were as pink as her dress, and she looked as good as an iced sweet in a bakery window, something he’d like to swirl his tongue around and gently taste.

Get on with it.

He took a deep breath, scooted his chair closer to hers until their knees touched, and took one of her hands in his. Her fingers were long and well-shaped. He wondered what they would feel like on his . . .

“Gwen . . .”


They laughed again, and their merriment gave him an opening. He placed his hand behind her head, leaned in, and took her bottom lip in his mouth, nibbling as he watched her face. She was as wide-eyed as he was, not even trying to move away. Then her lashes fluttered, and her eyes closed as she moved closer, inviting him to deepen the kiss. She moaned as his lips closed over hers, and he was totally undone.

What exciting story are you working on next?
The third book in the Scandal series is barely underway, but I’m already excited to be working on it. It’s about a man who returns from the Napoleonic Wars, depressed and defeated, and the woman who helps him want to live again. It’s called Scandal’s Promise and will probably not be available until next year. I’m also working on my first contemporary mystery, part of my Love in Wine Country novella series and I hope to release the second book in my Mission Belles series called Return of the Fox. This series takes place in California’s romantic rancho period, just prior to the Gold Rush.

When did you first consider yourself a writer?
When I was in the fourth grade, my class visited a theme park based on the American West. I was so impressed I wrote a long poem in iambic pentameter chronicling that visit. I was eight or nine years old. During high school and college, I worked as a newspaper reporter. I guess that’s when I really felt that I was a writer, although reporting is very different from writing fiction. Because of my journalism background and my major in history, after graduation I was contracted to write several history books on local topics. It wasn’t until years later, when I was close to retirement, that I began studying the craft of fiction and sold my first novel although I had dabbled in fiction before then.

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?
I am now retired and my days are filled caring for a disabled spouse. My writing time is from five to eight o’clock in the morning, grabbing an hour here and there during the day. When I worked outside the home full time, I wrote during holidays and vacations. I once took a week off, holed up in a friend’s cabin, and wrote twelve hours a day to meet a deadline. I can’t do that anymore, but I’ve written entire chapters while sitting at a bedside or in waiting rooms in doctor’s offices. Writers find time in bits and pieces, even when it isn’t convenient.

What would you say is your interesting writing quirk?
When I’m working through a plot problem, I pace. Then I stand in front of the refrigerator or cookie jar and I graze on whatever is there. Then I pace some more. Then I sit down and see what appears on the screen of my laptop. I’m not sure how moving my jaws and my feet relate to stimulating my brain, but it seems to work.

As a child, what did you want to be when you grew up?
I wanted to be a cowgirl. I rode around on a broomstick (maybe my subconscious wanted to be a witch and I didn’t know it). The broom was my horse. One Christmas my parents gave me a cowgirl outfit with hat, skirt, and vest. I was six. It must have made an impression because I remember it in great detail. I’d ride around the back yard on my broom, hiding near the garage, looking for outlaws. I don’t recall having a shiny six-shooter, but at some point I acquired a tin star. I probably made it myself out of aluminum foil.

After the fourth grade I definitely wanted to be a writer, although detective was right up there when I discovered Nancy Drew. Nurse came next with the Sue Barton nurse book series.

Anything additional you want to share with the readers?
I first started reading Regencies when quite pregnant with my first child. I was told they were great ways to escape. They were and I still highly recommend books written in this period. My favorite Regency author is Mary Balogh who wrings emotion from every character. It is my greatest hope to be able to do the same. I want my readers to feel what the characters are feeling, live what the characters are living. It is a gift. I hope someday to have it.


Thank you for being a guest on my blog!
Thank you for having me.

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