Writing friends, like most, come from many places. I attended an RWA party a while back, and was introduced to Cara. She quizzed me about writing for the Trues and since, has published several. My pleasure to post this interview with my True friend.
Tell us about yourself. How long have you been writing? I’ve been writing longer than I want to say. It took ten years of hard work and rejections before I sold my first book, to Avalon Books. I’ve always wanted to be an author and have been making up stories in my head since childhood, but life got in the way of my dream. Then one day I decided if I was going to realize my dream, I’d better get started writing some of those stories down.
How did you get from an office career to writing romance? I had no choice. I had to work at something that paid the bills. That was my day job. Although I worked full time, I managed to complete five novels. I wrote every lunch hour. I wrote Tuesday nights and Sunday afternoons. One night a week I met with my critique group.
I had no choice about leaving my job either. I was downsized. So I used that opportunity to write full time. Although I don’t always spend as much time writing as I should. I’m less organized than when I worked. When I have less time to do something, I seem to get more done.
Having more time to write has made it possible for me to discover a love for writing short stories. I love writing for the confession magazines-True Romance, True Love, True Experience, and True Confessions. In the past year, I’ve sold eight short stories.
Who is your favorite author(s) and why? I have lots of favorites. Two of my most favorite are Jude Deveraux and Heather Graham. Jude’s Knight in Shining Armor is one of my all-time favorite romances. I love Heather’s Civil War series. One Wore Gray is my favorite of that series.
Both of these authors write heroes who are to die for. Handsome, heroic, strong. And their heroines are equally heroic and strong. They write exciting stories that keep me turning the pages.
Tell us about your new book. My novella, Murder, Mi Amore, scheduled for release December 15, 2010, from The Wild Rose Press, is set almost entirely in Rome, Italy, which I visited in 2006. It’s part of the Jewel of the Night series Wild Rose is doing. Here’s the blurb:
Lexie Cortese is in Rome to forget. The last thing she expects is to meet a sexy Interpol agent who suspects her of being part of a terrorist plot involving a stolen diamond. Suddenly thrust into a world of murders, muggings, and kidnappings, Lexie doesn’t know what to think—or who to believe.
Dominic Brioni’s assignment is simple. Befriend the American and bring her to justice. Only Lexie seems the most unlikely terrorist Dominic has ever met. Sweet, determined, and direct, she faces life with courage and fire, a fire that sparks his protective instincts and a longing for something more—something he allowed himself to hope for only once before.
But that woman betrayed him, and his boss isn’t about to let him forget it. With his career on the line and Lexie in danger, will Dominic learn to trust his heart before they both get killed?
What is the appeal of writing romantic suspense and mysteries? Writing romantic suspense and mysteries is fun. I love putting my characters in danger, then seeing how they get out. And villains are such fun to write. Suspense adds an extra dimension to any story.
My first romantic suspense was Logan’s Redemption, from The Wild Rose Press. I got the rights back for that book and have published it exclusively on Amazon Kindle. Here’s the link: http://www.amazon.com/dp/B0040JI3PG
What kind of writings turns you off? What stops you from writing? I’m a character-driven reader. If I can’t relate to the characters, no matter how well the book is written, I won’t finish the book. I have to love the characters and really care about them.
Sometimes when my critique group tears down something I’ve written, I think maybe I should stop writing. When I get a rejection, I think maybe I should stop. But I love to write and can’t imagine not giving life to the characters in my head.
How have you shocked your readers? I don’t know that I’ve shocked them yet. I have a werewolf paranormal romance for which I’ve just been offered a contract. In that I believe I’ve got several shockers. But I’ll have to wait and see what the readers think.
How do you get your ideas? What is your writing day like? Ideas sometimes just come to me. Other times I might get an idea from a news headline, or a movie. My writing day is disorganized. And boring. Breakfast, then a two-mile walk. Twice a week I go to the gym. Then catch up on emails and do promos for whatever book I have out. Then I finally close the office door and write. But Killer, my fat black cat, makes it a point to disturb me all through the day.
Can you share three writing tips? Read the kind of stories you want to write. Write the kind of stories you want to read. Learn, learn, learn, all you can about writing, but don’t let others take away your unique voice.
Fill in this blank: Your ideal fictional hero would think you gorgeous if My hair was curly and I had long legs.
How much do you love cake? A bunch. Especially home made red velvet cake. Yum!!