AuThursday – Constance Bretes

EITM CB Banner

CB Author PhotoTell us a little about yourself and your background?

I was born and raised in Michigan, met my husband there, and worked for 38 years for the State of Michigan before retiring. We moved from Michigan to Montana in 2015, and then last year, we moved from Montana to Alabama for medical reasons. I have no children of my own, but I do have a step-son. I am owned by 3 kitty cats and the doggie that lives next door. I published my first book, Delayed Justice, in 2014. Elkhorn in the Moonlight is book #9, and Midnight Escape will be #10 and published later this year. When I’m not writing, I like to spend time with my husband and our fur babies, love to read romance novels, love to basket weave, fiddle on the piano, and sit on the swing on my back porch.

How do you make time to write?

Since I’m retired, and a homebody, I have plenty of time to devote to writing. The hardest point for me is to just sit and write. When I finally do sit to write, I have all my resources at my fingers, and my husband is gone to do his thing……

Do you work to an outline or plot or do you prefer just to see where an idea takes you?

I have a loose outline to guide me through the story. Just something that tells me what I want to put in.

Do you ever get writer’s Block?

Yes, a couple of times I went through writer’s block because of my medication. While in Montana, I was sick quite a bit, and couldn’t sit down to write, and when I could, I couldn’t due to the medications. Other times like right now, I have so many manuscripts in various stages of edits, that I just can’t sit and write, so I work on edits.

How did you deal with Rejection Letters if you received any?

I put them away. Then look at them later, when the sting goes away.

What are your current projects?

I am working with my publisher on the final edits for Midnight Escape to be released this summer. I have a military romance I’m working on, Operation Code Name: Desert Love, I am almost ready to submit another manuscript to my publisher called Love, A Second Time Around, I’m also working with a group of ladies called Common Elements Romance Project, we have taken 5 items, and have agreed to put them in our books, and we are publishing our books later this year. It is the first time I’ve ever self-published. My book is called The Haunted Love Affair. I’m working on three books, Roadside Love, Roadside Desire and Roadside Passion. It centers around two brothers and a sister who find love in a small town in Wyoming. All are related but standalone.

Which actor/actress would you like to see playing the lead character from your most recent book?

No actress for Nicole, in Elkhorn in the Moonlight, but someone I know in Basin, Montana, where we lived. For the hero, Marcus, I have Martin Sensmeier, a Native American actor.

What advice would you give to aspiring writers?

Keep writing, keep mastering the craft of writing and don’t give up.

Where can readers find you on the World Wide Web?

http://constancebretes.com

https://www.facebook.com/conniebretes/

https://twitter.com/ConstanceBretes

https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/7737457.Constance_Bretes

Email:  bretesc@gmail.com

http://beachwalkpress.com/constance-bretes/

https://www.bookbub.com/profile/constance-bretes

https://www.amazon.com/Constance-Bretes/e/B00IKSKRES/ref=dp_byline_cont_ebooks_1

https://plus.google.com/u/0/+ConnieBretes

Instagram: constancebretesauthor

Newsletter:  https://www.constancebretes.com/news–things.html

Do you have an excerpt you’d like to share with us?

CB-ElkhornintheMoonlight-1600x2400 (6)“You pass it every time you go into Mason. The other two are on the other side of the overpass. Sandpiper Mine you can see from the highway, but you have to go on Gulch Mine to get to the Elkhorn Mountains. The mountain ranges there are the highest, and there are a lot of vertical drops, so you’d have to travel where you can walk it. It’s not something where you can climb it and be there. You have to go in a roundabout way.”

“Do you have a very clear vision of where this cave is, and how to get to it?” he asked.

“Yes. I remember it clear as day now.”

“How soon can you get yourself ready for the hike?”

“What? I’m not going there. You are. I can’t just take off and leave, I have work to do. Plus, it’s way too cold to go there right now. The mountains in that area still have snow on them.”

“You think I would know where to go by the information that you provided?”

“I gave you very good information,” she said.

“Do you have the coordinates for GPS?”

“No. I don’t.”

“So, you think that I, who have never traveled these mountains before, would have no problem finding that cave?” Marcus’s eyes narrowed as he regarded her.

“I don’t have any idea how you intend to get there. Personally, I think you should wait until summer to do it. The weather in the mountains is unpredictable.”

Marcus sat thinking about the situation for a second, and then he said, “Name your price.”

“Huh?”

“I said, name your price,” he repeated.

“I need you to lead me to that cave, and I have to do it this week.”

“You’re not listening to me. I can’t take you there. I have work to do here. I can’t leave to go on a weeklong camping trip.”

“You can for a price,” he said grimly.

“You can’t buy me off to get what you want,” Nicole said defensively.

“Everyone is willing to do certain things for a certain price. Will thirty thousand get you interested and willing to go?”

“I…I…thirty thousand? No, I won’t be bought,” she stammered.

“Look, Nicole. Let’s quit with the games. I’m going to go there to get those Sacred Arrows, and you are the one who is going to take me there and bring me back. I’m offering you thirty thousand for a week…week and a half of work. I think your brother and his wife can handle the motel for that length of time.”

“I’m sorry.” She stopped for a few seconds.

“I won’t be bullied. My answer is no.” She stood up to leave.

“Just think about this. Like I said, thirty thousand for a week and a half of work. Think what you could do with that money. Think of all the possibilities and opportunities you’d have. As for the weather, I know you have lived through worse weather right here in Mason. You know what to expect. I would not let you go up there without your GPS, your cellphone and satellite phone, your two-way radio, and letting your brother know exactly where you’re at should there ever be an emergency. I’ll give you until tomorrow at noon to tell me your decision, and if I were you, I’d think about this very seriously. I intend to have my way in this,” he said sternly. Grabbing his maps and the pictures she gave him, he walked back to the causeway and to his room.  

 

Advertisements

AuThursday – Tabetha Waite

img_6440Tell us a little about yourself and your background?

I am a small town Missouri girl born and bred! I’ve wanted to write since the fourth grade after my teacher encouraged me. She said she liked reading my stories, so for a girl who was shy and bullied it was wonderful to have someone believe that I had a talent. Years passed and I have a family, my husband Doug and two great daughters, but I always kept writing in the back of my mind. It took me 30 years to accomplish, but my first book was published in July of 2016.

How do you make time to write?

I honestly feel lost, like I’m doing something wrong if I don’t have my computer open. Even if I’m just staring at the cursor waiting for inspiration to strike, I try to write a little each day. I usually get a lot done in the summer and on Christmas and spring breaks when I don’t have to work at my ‘day job’ as a lunch lady at the local community college. I look forward to the day when I can write full time!

I see you write Historical Romance, what draws you to this genre?

Easy! I love a good HEA! When I was younger, I used to read lots of different genres, but I didn’t like investing so much time in a book when I was in tears at the end. Granted, these books weren’t awful, just not what I wanted to read. So when I found the romance genre, I was instantly hooked! As far as historicals, I’ve always loved learning about history, so when the thought of a hero and heroine meeting at a ball, arriving in their carriages and dressed in their finery, I couldn’t pass up the opportunity to immerse myself in this world.

How much research do you do?

As much as I try to be as accurate as possible, I’m not an author that wants to feel as if I’m giving my reader a history lesson. I know some people prefer exact facts, but when it comes to fiction, I prefer to add my own spin on things. The purpose of a romance is to feel the emotion between the characters, to lose yourself in their romantic turmoil, so that is what I try to achieve more than anything. I want my readers to close my book with a happy sigh at the end.

How did you come up with the idea for your “Ways of Love” series?

That happened by accident really. I was trying to come up with a catchy title for my first book. When I thought of “Why the Earl is After the Girl,” I thought it was cute because it rhymed. As I was writing the story, I added a character that I absolutely adored, Orion’s best friend, Roarke. I knew that he would have to have his own book, so I started to wonder how I could tie them together. Thus, Who, What, When, Where & Why was born!

Have you written any other novels in collaboration with other writers?

Yes! So far there have been five, with three more currently on the way! It’s been FABULOUS working on these projects. We’ve had a great time!

Why did you do decide to collaborate and did that affect your sales?

The first anthology I was a part of was called, ‘Yuletide Happily Ever Afters – A Merry Little Set of Regency Romances.’ Initially, Annabelle Anders approached me on social media. We had already been chatting and seemed to have a connection, so we came up with an idea to write a Christmas set together. After asking a few other ladies to join, we released the set on October 1, 2018. It went over VERY well, much better than we all expected! It was also great for my other book sales, for it opened up the door to more readers.  

What are your current projects?

Other than the three collaborations that will be coming out this year, two in April, and one in September, I am also preparing to release the fourth book in my Ways of Love Series entitled, “Who the Marquess Dares to Desire.” I am SO excited to finally be able to share Drayven and Clara’s story with my readers. After a rather lengthy delay, it’s almost here! I hope to have book 5 out later this year as well, which will tie up the series with five books and a prequel novella. It’s been a labor of love, but I’m ready to move on and try my hand at a bit of fantasy romance! But never fear! I will always W back to my historicals.

Where can readers find you on the World Wide Web?

My website is authortabethawaite.wix.com/romance and there you can join my mailing list for a free monthly newsletter, plus find ALL my social media links!

img_0236Do you have an excerpt you’d like to share with us?

Standing, she began to gather her things.

“Where are you going?”

She kept her face carefully averted. “I told you what you wanted to know, Lord Sussex. There’s nothing more to say.”

Clara gasped when she felt a gentle hand under her chin. She hadn’t even heard him cross the room. He lifted her face to him and his focus fell to her mouth. “Maybe I don’t want you to go just yet.” His breath fanned her forehead and she shivered.

“I don’t think that’s a good idea, my lord. It won’t accomplish anything if I stay.”

“Then don’t think.” His eyes smoldered like dark coals. “Take a risk, Miss Upton. With me.”  

Clara’s pulse fluttered rapidly. This man’s kisses breathed fire into her very soul, but they also threatened to scorch her heart. She knew she should go, yet how could she leave? “You frighten me,” she admitted, although she could feel herself giving in to the temptation.

“Then we are evenly matched, for you scare the hell out of me.”

 

AuThursday – Lourdes R. Florido

Please welcome published LGBT Author Lourdes R. Florido, to the Clog Blog.  Lourdes, how long have you been writing?

I wrote my first piece of fiction when I was in the 2nd grade. I remember it was a very short story about ants.  But of course it all started with a love of words and reading.  When I first learned to read I became immediately fascinated with words, driving my brother and sister crazy as we sat in the back of my parent’s car, when they were driving us somewhere, and I would read aloud every street or business sign we would pass.  That fascination was soon funneled into the books my parents would buy me and eventually into my writing stories.

Q:  What books have most influenced your life most?

I have five that I feel have influenced not only my writing but my interests in literature:

The Outsiders – S.E. Hinton

A Separate Peace – John Knowles

Wuthering Heights- Emily Bronte

Treasure Island – Robert Louis Stevenson

Lord of the Rings – J.R.R. Tolkien

The Outsiders and A Separate Peace cemented my love of “bromances”(if you want to call them that) and my fascination with exploring friendships between two guys which of course is a major part of Nicolas’ and Henry’s story in a Whisper of Angels, except these two best friends happen to be soulmates who are secretly in love with each other.   Wuthering Heights best exemplifies the type of historical romances I love. I’m a big fan of the Bronte sisters, Jane Austen, E.M Forster, Edith Wharton, Thomas Hardy, and others. The last two novels, Treasure Island and The Lord of the Rings touch on two areas of fascination and reading interests for me: maritime history and fantasy literature, both of which are reflected in A Whisper of Angels which is a paranormal love story.

Q:  Do you have a specific writing style?

I don’t think I have one specific style, but with A Whisper of Angels, I tried in my writing to exude the tone that is found in so many of the 19th century classic romances I love.

Q:  Do you ever suffer from Writer’s Block and how do you move past it?

Yes, sometimes.  I have to get up and away from the computer and take a walk (preferably with my dogs) to see if a breakthrough of ideas comes.  I also try to skip forward to another scene that perhaps I’d thought about ,but not started writing yet, to see if that gets the words flowing.

Q:  What do you think is the biggest misconception in LGBT fiction?

Some people think that LGBT fiction is written only by LGBT people for gay audiences. While obviously it is for gay audiences, it can extend to general audiences too.  I’ve had many people tell me that they were surprised that I, a straight woman, had written a story about two gay young men, and then these same people having never read a gay story before mine, told me they were pleasantly surprised to discover they enjoyed the novel and the different genres it encompassed.

 Q: Would you tell us your story of getting “the call?”

I’m not sure what “call” you mean, so I’ll just answer it in a couple of ways and hope that will suffice. I you mean the call to write I explained it in the first answer, and would just add that the call extended itself into my professional life.  For a while I worked as a fulltime print journalist and now teach composition and literature.  If you mean “the call” to write LGBT fiction, I would say that it was my main character Nicolas who drove that decision. That’s just who he turned out to be – a gay young man in love with his best friend, in a time period when that would never be acceptable. Another influence was probably the fact that I’ve always had gay friends and experiences with the LGBT community.  It started during my middle school years with my best friend’s mother who was a lesbian who lived with her partner during a time when most people did not publically divulge their lifestyles.

Q:  What are your current projects?

I’ve been working on a historical romance set in Key West for a while.  But I’ve set it aside for now to work strictly on Book 2 of “A Whisper of Angels”.  It’s written from Henry’s viewpoint, which is challenging because he has a very different voice.  The book will wrap up a few loose ends that lingered from the first novel as well as introduces a few surprises from Henry’s past life.

Q:  Where can readers find you on the World Wide Web?

Look for me and contact me on Goodreads and Facebook:

https://www.goodreads.com/llrodrig1

https://www.facebook.com/lourdesrfloridobooks/

AuThursday – Kara O’Neal

Kara (1 of 1)Please welcome my fellow Resplendence writer,  Kara O’Neal, to the Clog Blog.  Kara,  How long have you been writing?

I wrote my first novel when I was pregnant with my oldest child, so I’ve been writing almost sixteen years.

Q:  Do you have a specific writing style?

I’m not really sure. I write where the characters take me. Sometimes I’m more descriptive than usual or sometimes I find I’m writing wittier conversations. I never know what’s gonna end up on the page.

Q : Do you ever suffer from writer’s block?

So far I haven’t faced that terrible situation. I’m sure I will, but right now I’m lucky to have created a town that has a variety of characters. These people keep leading me down roads that allow my imagination to run free. It’s been a lot of fun!

Q: How did you deal with rejection letters, if you received any?

I received several rejections. The first was hard, and the next dozen or so were even harder. I didn’t know what I was doing wrong, and I couldn’t figure out how to fix it. I’m sad to say I did stop sending my manuscript to people. I didn’t quit writing, but I did quit trying to get published. It was hard to keep submitting when I felt like I was sending out poor material. I finally started entering contests and the suggestions, comments, etc. I received helped a lot. I also found a critique group, which was the scariest thing I’d ever done, but it paid off. I became a better writer because of these things, and it only took one year for me to find a publisher who liked my work.

Q:  Would you tell us your story of getting “the call?”

Oh, what a day that was! When I read the email from Resplendence Publishing indicating they wanted me, me, to write for them, I promise I sat in silence for probably thirty seconds and blinked at the screen. Then I rushed to my husband and made him come read it. I was so afraid I was misinterpreting the communication. When it finally sank in, I called my siblings first. They are my inspirations and my biggest fans. Then I called my parents, and made my dad promise he wouldn’t ever read any of my books. They are romance, after all! (He has completely ignored my command and read every single one of my books.)

Q:  How did you come up with the idea for the PIKES RUN series?

TRR The Sheriff's Gift

TRR CowboysCharmsTRR MillerBridesSaving Sarah TRR

 

 

 

 

I wanted to write stories about a family. One that lived, laughed and loved as mine does. Several of my characters are based off of people I know, and they are perfect models for the Lonnigan and Davis families. Many of my favorite scenes are when they’re sharing a Sunday meal and teasing each other.

Q: To date which of your books was the hardest to write and why?TRR Welcome Home

Without a doubt the hardest to write was my first, Welcome Home, simply because it was my first. I was trying to figure out how to write along with finding my voice. I can tell you it was difficult, but I kept writing. And rewriting. And rewriting some more.

Q:  What are your current projects?

I’m about to send book seven, Love’s Redemption, to my editor and book eight, The Editor’s Kisses, is going through the critique process. I’ll start book nine, The Ranger’s Vow, this week.

Q:  Where can readers find you on the World Wide Web?

Many places!

My website: www.karaoneal.com.

My facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/KaraONeal84/

Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/karaoneal7/

Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Kara-ONeal/e/B00FL19TH8/ref=sr_ntt_srch_lnk_1?qid=1465007993&sr=8-1

Barnes and Noble: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/s/kara+o’neal?_requestid=845025

Twitter: https://twitter.com/KaraONealAuthor.

Join me on Saturday when we read a sexy teaser from Kara’s book Love’s Promise. ~Tina

AuThursday- Livia Quinn

Livia Quinn Head Shot_M9A0603 square sml copyPlease welcome Romance Author Livia Quinn to The Clog Blog.  Livia, with so many books published, how do you make time to write?

That’s a great question. In 2014, the year I restarted my career, my goal was to write and publish six books. I nearly killed myself working and getting those books ready for publication but once I accomplished it, I assumed I’d be able to do that each year. Wrong. Being a self-published author who does all her own formatting, uploading, promotion, etc. means a LOT of maintenance, and working seven days a week for seven months at my small business means figuring out at way to work writing time into shorter periods—in the tub, on the road to work, between customers. So from January to August sometimes I only get one-two books written and published. In the winter months I try to do more. I have a tip for your readers that was a real eye opener for me. I have an itty bitty spreadsheet that I keep handy to remind me how small increments of words add up. 250-300 words a day on busy days and 1-3000 on off days depending on the day, calculated by month and year. Then I divide the total (124,000, 296,000 or whatever) into possible outcomes, two novels and a novella, three novels and a short, etc. You’ll amaze yourself at what you can accomplish with a regular habit, no matter the amount because once you start writing you will usually write more than you think.

Q:  Do you ever get writer’s block?  Any tips on how to get through the dreaded writer’s block?

Before this year, I would have said no. When it threatened before, I went to the tub (my muse pool) and my characters never failed to follow me, or I took a drive. But for the second year in a row, my day job killed my creativity. Then, doubts creep in and you think, “My characters have left me. I’m out of ideas. I’m crap at this.”  I struggled for probably a month-and-a-half recently feeling like my current book was lacking something or even several somethings. So I took a break, caught up on some reading and started a new audiobook. Then, I ran across a picture in a magazine that inspired me with some ideas and suddenly things were clicking again. It also helped when my time freed up a little, but if the characters and story are real to me, I can usually work through the job stress. Escape is wonderfully energizing.

Q: To date which of your books was the hardest to write and why?

Well, probably the one I mentioned but before that, Blame it on the Moon for a similar reason. Fear. The first three books in the Destiny Paramortals led up to Blame and halfway into it I was afraid I didn’t have what it took to make it work and be proud of it. Fear and doubt are big hurtles for a writer I think. But my readers loved it even more than the first three, so I’m trying to use that as encouragement for book five, Take These Broken Wings, which is on preorder now for July.

Q:  What do you feel is the most important aspect for all new authors to remember when writing or creating their own stories?

Be true to yourself and to your voice. And if you’re not enjoying the story, the world and your characters, it’s time to change it or move on. Writing something for any other reason only brings misery. For me anyway.

Q:  How did you come up with the idea for your STORM LAKE series?

Ha! I grew up in DC afraid of thunderstorms and lightning, apparently from a July fireworks adventure gone awry when I was three. After moving to Louisiana during the worst tornado year on record, and then going through Katrina, not to mention a few others weather related events, Storm Lake was born. And since I love contemporary and paranormal, the lake has both. The Paramortals live on the west end where the leylines run through Destiny, and my heroine there is a weather witch (Tempestaerie). The east end has natural severe weather and the heroes are ex-military now cover models. Those stories are contemporary romance and romantic suspense.

Q:  Why did you choose Indie (self) publishing vs. Small Press or Traditional Publishing?

One of those aforementioned weather events in 2011, the Mississippi River flood, kept me from turning in some submissions and when the dust settled I realized it was going to take too long to get back my momentum and expect to be published anytime soon. There were other reasons like creative control – being able to write the book my characters wanted me to write and not having to determine the exact sub-genre. Authors were just started to self-publish and there was still such a stigma, but I decided it was the only way for me. I didn’t go about it the right way though. I published one book and then had no clue what to do. It wasn’t a wasted effort because I learned a lot about myself and the business of writing, but it was two years before I was ready again to do it right.

Q:  What would you say are the main advantages and disadvantages of self-publishing?

Especially if you have to work or have big drains on your time like a family, it’s really hard. It’s all on you, especially if you can’t afford to farm out administrative tasks, formatting, promotion, uploading, writing blurbs, descriptions, re-uploading, etc etc. BUT if you’re the kind of person who wants to be in control and can manage your time and create viable deadlines, and you want to be the one that says, “I want to make my own decisions (after researching and getting the best information you can of course) and I can live with the outcome knowing I’m in control of my own creative work,” then maybe self-publishing is for you. You won’t have the big engine of a trad publisher behind you, but we’ve seen that sometimes that’s a dual edged sword. Royalties are certainly better if you can find visibility, which is the biggest struggle for any author now. But this is important, I think you should have several books ready to publish right off, say a month apart or two months at the most to get your “footprint” established.

Q:  Who designed the covers?

My fantastically talented cover designer, Linda Boulanger, of Tell-Tale Book Covers, designed all my covers except Undone. She’s recently revamped my Under-Cover Knights which underwent a series change to Storm Lake East: Larue (where the hunks are on the cover :))  Larue 3 copy

Q:  Which one of your covers is your favorite and why?

I love what she did with the Larue covers and Blame it on the Moon, but recently Linda updated my cover for the first Destiny Paramortals book, Storm Crazy. The first books in my series are free and I wanted a fresh look for Tempe and Jack.  Here it is.

Storm Crazy EBOOK New 05152016 copy

Q:  Where can readers find you on the World Wide Web?

Buy links for all stores: http://liviaquin.com/books.html

Facebook www.facebook.com/liviaquinnwrites

Twitter www.twitter.com/liviaquinn

Pinterest www.pinterest.com/liviaquinn

Website www.liviaquinn.com

Sign up for my newsletter  http://eepurl.com/W94bb

Goodreads  http://bit.ly/1TfBMe9

Join me on Saturday when we read a sexy excerpt from one of Livia’s books.  ~Tina

 

 

AuThursday – Barbara Meyers

Please welcome Author, Poet and Lyric Writer Barbara Meyers.  Barbara, Can you tell us your latest news?

FANTASY MAN is my sixth book with Samhain Publishing and was just released in February. I’m excited about being part of Florida Writers Association’s multi-genre book signing in Altamonte Springs, Florida on May 1st. And my short story, “Hidden Heart” was recently accepted for judging to be part of FWA’s 2016 Collection. More news (I hope) on that later. Oh, and the Lakeland (Florida) Ledger did a great article on me. Barista by day/Novelist by Night. You can read it here: http://bit.ly/1V3wIgY

 Q: To date which of your books was the hardest to write and why?

It might be FANTASY MAN. I started this book a very long time ago and it underwent numerous rewrites over the years because I never give up on a story I love. It was, in fact, initially turned down by my editor (the wonderful Noah Chinn). But Noah did something editors don’t always do. He told me why he turned it down. I rewrote it (again!) based on his input and even after he accepted it, we still had a lot of work to do and we both learned a lot from the process. Why it was a difficult process is because I’ve improved as a writer since I first wrote the story. And, of course, at that time, I did not have an editor. Good editors make all the difference between an okay book and a really good book.

Q:  What is your writing process? Do you outline, fly by the seat of your pants or a combination of both? Do you use mood music, candles, no noise, when you write?

I’m a total pantser. Zero music although I wrote my first manuscript listening to a Michael Bolton CD on repeat. “When a Man Loves a Woman…” Perfect romance music, right? But now I need quiet. I often light candles, though. I usually start with the idea and I write down every possibility I can think of about who the hero and heroine are and why they are where they are in life. Often it’s just a tiny seed of an idea in a Word document in a file titled “Story Ideas.” I keep adding to it over time until I decide I’ve got enough and the time is right to start working on the book. It’s not a great system and I don’t recommend it to anyone else. But I can’t seem to work any other way.

Q: Do you have a special time to write or how is your day structured?

If I’m not working my early morning day job as a barista for a global coffee company, I try to get an early start writing and keep at it until my brain turns to mush.

Q: Do you write on a typewriter, computer, dictate or longhand?

I write on an older laptop that is not connected to the internet which limits distractions.

Q: So, what have you written?
I have written books, short stories, song lyrics, poems and blogs.

Q: What draws you to Poetry and Lyrics?

I have a weird ability to occasionally write poems with a Dr. Seuss-like rhyming scheme in a matter of minutes. I wrote lyrics for a song after my daughter was in a car accident. Later I met up with a friend who plays guitar, sings and also writes songs, so we collaborate. I like telling an entire story in short form through poetry or lyrics.

Q: What are you working on at the minute, and what’s it about?

Finishing up a contemporary romance, Soft Core. A former adult film star starts life over in a small Iowa town.

Q:  What do you feel is the most important aspect for all new authors to remember when writing or creating their own stories?

That their eyes only on their story is not good enough. Their work needs to be PROFESSIONALLY edited. I cannot stress enough what a difference this will make between a so/so book and a really good book. Most authors cannot see the forest for the trees in their own work even though they think they can. This is what I’ve learned from working with an editor like Noah. He does freelance editing, btw.

Q: It looks like some of your works are self-published, what would you say are the main advantages and disadvantages of self-publishing against being published or the other way around?

The advantage is the freedom to write what you want to write. The disadvantage is you have to do all the work from cover design to getting it into the marketplace. And, as I’ve learned, you should never put unedited work out there. Find a good editor and invest in your book. It will pay off in the long run.

Q:  What is on tap for the rest of 2016?

I have a couple of contemporary romance projects I hope to release later this year. Also the second book of the Grinding Reality series which I write under my pen name, AJ Tillock, entitled Cool Beans. And another contemporary romance I’m close to completing, entitled Soft Core. And who knows what other surprises the year may hold?

Q:  Where can readers find you on the World Wide Web?

Author Barbara Meyers Social Media Links:

Web Site:  http://www.barbarameyers.com

Blog: http://barbmeyers.wordpress.com/blog/

Facebook Author Pages: https://www.facebook.com/BarbaraMeyersAuthorPage

https://www.facebook.com/AJTillock/?ref=tn_tnmn

Samhain Author Page:

https://www.samhainpublishing.com/author/210/barbara-meyers

Amazon Author Page:  http://amazon.com/author/barbarameyers

Pinterest:  https://www.pinterest.com/barbmeyers1/

Goodreads:  https://www.goodreads.com/barbmeyers

BookBub:  https://www.bookbub.com/authors/barbara-meyers

Twitter: @barbmeyers and @ajtillock

Twitter URL:  https://twitter.com/barbmeyers

Draft2Digital:  http://books2read.com/author/barbara-meyers/subscribe/1/33163/

Please join me on Saturday when we read an excerpt from Barbara’s February Release, Fantasy Man. ~Tina

 

 

 

 

AuThursday – CJ Matthew

CJ at Dell

Please welcome CJ Matthew to the Clog Blog.  CJ, we simply must know, when you are writing, who is in control? You or your characters?

My characters and I share a team effort to get their story on the page (computer). Before I began researching the Dolphin Shore Shifter series, I was “approached” by two (potential) fictional couples and multiple supporting characters. We all worked together on the initial world building, with a stronger emphasis on my input. I decided on the rules, on what physical and mental strengths they would retain after shifting from dolphin to human form. For example, choosing Santa Barbara as the home of the pod and their non-profit corporation, Save Blue Water, was only logical.

Each book in the series features its own hero and heroine. Those two characters have a much bigger influence when it comes to setting their goals, motivations, and inner conflicts. I usually meet the antagonist or villain last. He or she makes huge contributions to the external conflicts in the book.

Q: Do you ever suffer from writer’s block? If so, what do you do about it?

Not writer’s block in the traditional sense. Twice now I’ve written a book “out of order”. Once for this series and once for the Paladin Group. That mistake (on my part) makes the writing process much slower, more challenging, and frustrating for the characters and me. Not true writer’s block, but it’s a pain in the backside. Then there was the time I was requested to write a Shore Shifter novella. That took forever to write and was quickly turned into a full length novel.

Q:  How did you come up with the idea for your Shoreshifter series?CJMatthew_Postcard_Front

I love reading about shifters, and there certainly are a lot to choose from. I wanted something different, so I combined my love for dolphins with the idea of the Chumash origin legend: Mother Earth, Hutash, built a rainbow bridge to give her people more room on the main land. But when some of the Chumash people fell from the bridge, rather than let them die, she turned them into dolphins.

Pageflex Persona [document: PRS0000039_00006]Q: What inspired you to write your book, Deadly Reboot?

I grew up an Air Force brat and love reading about military warriors. My personal heroes are USAF Pararescuemen and F-15E Strike Eagle pilots and WSOs. I decided to create a small fictional company, The Paladin Group, owned by a rescued female AF pilot and staffed with wounded former PJs, now lawyers and investigators determined to continue their rescue work.

Think Scandal meets the A-Team-but nobody is sleeping with the President!

Q: What was the most difficult aspect of writing Deadly Reboot?

 This was my first “official” romantic suspense novel. Characters without paranormal issues. Which for me, meant I had to work hard at maintaining tension, slipping in clues, not giving too much away too soon. I bombarded my local police sources and deputy sheriffs with lots of questions about police procedure! And in the process, I learned different police departments do thing differently.

Q:  How did you come up with the title?

My hero/character Hale! My fictional former USAF Pararescueman was depressed about his leg injury, hated taking a medical discharge, and didn’t like law school. So when he was approached by Paladin at law school graduation, he looked at the opportunity as a “reboot” to his life. I thanked him for the idea and decided to use the word for all the titles in the series.

Q:  Tell us your latest news?

I’m deep in writing Lethal Tide, Dolphin Shore Shifters book 4. The story is set in one of my “home towns”- Long Beach, California. The hero, Conley is on his second three year mission with SBW and responds to danger with his gun and by the “seat-of-his-pants”. His partner, Betty believes in doing her research, thinking first before she leaps, or shoots. This book is scheduled to release the end of March.

After that I’ll go back to Peachwood, GA and next The Paladin Group story.

Q: How important is it for you to match your character’s written appearance with the models on the book cover?

Thanks for asking. I try to match but it’s an almost impossible feat. I believe that’s why you see photos of cover models with their heads cut off. I want my readers to use their imagination. I’ll give hints but they need to picture the characters in their brain. Make them a personal fantasy! I hope my readers get the “feel” of the cover, then mostly ignore the faces.

Q:  Where can readers find you on the World Wide Web?

My website http://www.cjmatthew.com

(There is an entire section devoted to the Shore Shifters. The Paladin Group page is coming.)

Join me on Saturday, when we read a sexy excerpt from CJ’s first book, BLOOD TIDE. ~Tina