AuThursday – David Bridger

David Bridger author picPlease welcome my friend David Bridger to The Clog Blog!  David, tell us a little about yourself and your background.
Twenty years in the Royal Navy until I got hurt and then caught a virus in hospital that left me housebound/bedbound with lifelong chronic illness. Cue: my second career as a novelist. Twelve written to date, nine of them still in print, with three more on the way in this next year or two plus my first non-fiction book.
How do you make time to write?
I have all the time in the world (Thanks, Louis) but very limited energy, so managing that to allow my writing is a job in itself.
Do you believe in writer’s block?
For me, thankfully, it hasn’t happened.
Tell us a bit about the genre you write and why you love it.
Science fiction and fantasy of a literary style.
How are you publishing your recent book and why? 
Over the years, I’ve done traditional and then self-publishing. Enjoyed the creative freedom of the latter, but eventually had to admit that all the extra work was damaging my health. Fortunately, a friend introduced me to his small independent publisher, who turned out to be a treasure. She and I get on, personally and professionally. She asks no more of me than that I write my books then edit them with her, which is the perfect usage of my available energy. All my available books are now with her house, and I hope that all my future ones will be too.
Are you an Introvert or an Extrovert?  How does this affect your work?
I’m a contemplative. Extrovert in my younger days, growing less so as I age. This might perhaps affect my writing, although I’m probably not the best person to judge that.
What is your favorite motivational phrase?
I trust my intuition.
What advice would you give to aspiring writers?
Keep going.
Where can readers find you on the World Wide Web?
Do you have an excerpt you’d like to share with us?
From my most recently released novel, Wild Times:
DavidBridger_WildTimes_1600x2400
Magic is a marriage of hope and rebellion.
It’s everywhere in the world. Always has been. But in most of the world, it’s unknown. People stopped using it, believing in it even, thousands of years ago, and hundreds of years ago, and tens of years ago. It seems that each culture and each generation rejects magic a bit more than the one before. Some cultures more or less than others, but the general trend is to ignore magic and eventually to forget it. In every culture, though, in every generation, there are people who don’t ignore it. Some of them stick around in the normal world, and they are often persecuted because of what they know, what they practise.
But many don’t stick around. They go into the Wild.

AuThursday – Cynthia Terelst

Welcome Cynthia Terelst to The Clog Blog!  Cynthia, Can you tell us a little about yourself and your background?
I work full-time as a Document Controls Manager. I loved reading as a child and began writing in earnest when I was a teenager. I wrote my first novel when I was sixteen. It is still unpublished but I do work on it every now and then.
How do you make time to write?
I am very structured. My day job takes a lot out of me, both mentally and time-wise. I write after work and on weekends. I am fortunate that I don’t have any children at home. Writing is me time. I try to do it every day.
Do you believe in writer’s block?
Yes. I am sure that a lot of authors feel stuck at times. When I do, I try to just keep writing. Even if it’s just a few words. It helps me think about what is coming.
Tell us a bit about the genre you write and why you love it.
I write contemporary romance. I have always enjoyed reading romance, even as a teenager. Back then the books I read were more sweet, nothing more than a kiss. I love romance because it gives you feel-good vibes. Love is what makes the world go around.
How are you publishing your recent book and why? 
All of my books are indie published. The traditional route did not meet the speed at which I wanted to publish. Indie is a big investment in time and money but I feel that it is worth it. I don’t skimp on anything – covers, editing, proofreading – because I want to give my readers the best possible book.
Are you an Introvert or an Extrovert?  How does this affect your work?
I’m a bit of both. I am a shy person unless I am confident in a situation. I don’t think it affects my writing.
Sometimes being quiet allows you to read situations. But when you are an extrovert you can be in the middle of those situations.
What is your favorite motivational phrase?
Today’s is –
You are your only limit
What advice would you give to aspiring writers?
Practice, practice, practice. Learn, learn, learn. Get feedback on your writing. It will help you become a better writer.
Where can readers find you on the World Wide Web?
Do you have an excerpt you’d like to share with us?
The four of us were ready to leave camp. Rosanna and Mak each had a towel and book ready to hit the beach to read. I was disappointed Mak wasn’t joining us. As we walked past them, I paused. I leant in to give her a kiss. My lips embraced hers, once, twice, tasting as much as I dared. She tasted good, like bacon and the sweet taste of Makayla.
I wanted her to know that although I was leaving there was a promise of my return and more kissing to come. Could all that be conveyed in one kiss?
“Enjoy your book,” I said as her eyes met mine.
“Thanks.” She gave me a small smile. Her complete attention was on me, like no one else existed. I wanted another kiss but that would be overkill. I walked away. I don’t know what possessed me to kiss her. Sure, I’d kissed plenty of women before. But nothing like that. Nothing meaningful.
The people making the footsteps behind me were silent. I knew each of them would have something to say but not one of them uttered a word. Not until we hopped into the four-wheel drive.
“What was that?” Manny asked from the front seat.
“What was what?”
“Don’t be difficult. That kiss.”
Nicki who sat next to me turned her face to mine, as did Harrison beside her.
“It was a kiss. No big deal.”
“Since when do you and Mak kiss?” Nicki stared at me like she was trying to decipher unexpected results from an experiment.
“Since we decided it was a fun thing to do.”
“In all the years I’ve known you, I have never seen you kiss someone like that,” Harrison said.
“Time to try something new.”
Nicki sat back and stared straight ahead. She clutched her hands in her lap. Then she looked at me again. “I hope you’re not playing her. Mak spent ten years with the wrong person. I don’t want to see her hurt because you think she’s a good experiment, or just something frivolous and fun.”
“That’s not what I meant.”
“What did you mean then?”
“Mak’s different to anyone I’ve ever met.”
“We’re all different to anyone you’ve ever met.” Jeez she was a hard task master. I thought she was all for this with the way she and Rosanna acted. Maybe they were all for it until there was risk of Makayla getting hurt. A kiss wasn’t a promise of forever or even ten years. We weren’t putting our hearts out there, just our lips. Of course, it was just our lips…
I needed to show Nicki what I meant about Makayla being different.
“She can be so distant one moment, stubborn to a fault. And then she loses control. Something comes out and I see a glimpse of the person hiding beneath.” Were these words actually coming out of me? I sounded love struck…but I was nothing of the sort.

AuThursday – Karenna Colcroft

Kim Ramsey-Winkler headshot smPlease welcome Karenna Colcroft to the Clog Blog!  Karenna, can you tell us a little about yourself and your background?
I live in Massachusetts with my husband and split time between the home he and I share and the home of my committed partner. I’m a nonbinary, polyamorous human, mother of two kids and a son-in-law, and grandmother of three. I’ve been writing since I was five years old, and I love stories that take place in “the real world” but have fantasy elements and things that (probably) would never happen in reality. Like werewolves.
How do you make time to write?
I’m partially disabled, so I don’t have a “real job.” Writing and holistic wellness practices are my full-time work, and I drive rideshare to support my writing habit. Since I set my own schedule, I can write whenever I want, and work the other things around it.
Do you believe in writer’s block?
Absolutely, though I have a different take on it. For me, “writer’s block” means “my brain is occupied with mental health issues or other things, and I can’t spare the bandwidth to think about stories right now.” I just came off a nearly 7-year period where that was the case; my July book release is the first new romance I’ve written since 2016!
Tell us a bit about the genre you write and why you love it.
I write paranormal romance (and occasionally contemporary); as I said above, I love stories that take place in “the real world” but have fantasy elements. Under other names, I also write contemporary fiction for preteens and teenagers, and metaphysical nonfiction.
How are you publishing your recent book and why?
Indie publishing. The July release is a new book but is part of a series that was published previously. Those rights were reverted to me in 2016. Since the books were published before, and I’m a bit of a control freak, I chose to self-publish this time around, including a few new books that I’m working on that will be part of the series.
Are you an Introvert or an Extrovert?  How does this affect your work?
Introvert. The biggest effect is in trying to connect with readers and other authors; I find that very difficult. It’s also reflected in my writing; my characters often have very little social life, because I simply don’t think about that kind of thing.
What is your favorite motivational phrase?
I don’t have one…
What advice would you give to aspiring writers?
If you feel blocked, write something. Anything. It might not be part of what you’re “supposed to be” working on, but even a sentence is more than nothing. Also, if you plan to pursue publication, do your research on the companies you hope to work with.
Where can readers find you on the World Wide Web?
My website is karennacolcroft.com;

AuThursday – Mia Sivan

Headshot 1Please welcome Mia to the Clog Blog!  Mia, Can you tell us a little about yourself and your background?
I’m an Israeli who writes in English, and I wrote a romance novel set in Tel Aviv. The book is based on actual events that occurred in the Israeli financial market, and it draws from my experience as an investment manager.
How do you make time to write?
I am now writing almost full-time.
Do you believe in writer’s block?
It happened to me – so yes. But I found a way to get out of it (I’m willing to expound).
Tell us a bit about the genre you write and why you love it.
Steamy romance. I love it because there is always a HEA – BUT! since it’s established that all will end well I can raise social issues that are important to me and discuss them.
How are you publishing your recent book and why? 
Indie. I wanted full control over the content.
Are you an Introvert or an Extrovert?  How does this affect your work?
I’m more an introvert than anything else, but not really.
What is your favorite motivational phrase?
Even five written words a day – are words.
What advice would you give to aspiring writers?
Persevere.
Where can readers find you on the World Wide Web?
Do you have an excerpt you’d like to share with us?
Crunching Her Numbers EBOOK-updated
First kiss:
“I want to kiss you before I go.” Her eyes finally smiled at him, and he didn’t wait for a more literal consent. He caught her lovely mouth, the mouth that he’d been fantasizing about for months on end. She tasted like honey, sweet and rich. He made a small, needy noise, and maybe she made one too.
Her hands held his face in place, bossy, so Kelly-like, and she angled her head just a bit and demanded his surrender, which he gave so willingly.
Then he asked her for a little bit more, diving in a little bit deeper, darting his tongue, asking for her capitulation. Which, incredibly, she gave.
Slava moaned pitifully.
He wished so badly, for so long, for her lips, and now he had it and he wished he hadn’t. They were like a black hole, these lips, swallowing light and reason. He stopped thinking, he couldn’t tell how it had happened, but he was hoisting her with his arms, laying her on the sofa, and kissing her some more—on her neck, her shoulders, then coming back again and again to her addictive lips. His leg gathered her to him, his hand cradled her head, drawing her closer, nestling her in his arms, the long, dangling earrings tangling in her hair. He pulled up for air.

AuThursday – Joseph P. Garland

Welcome to The Clog Blog, Joseph.  Tell us a little about yourself and your background?
Native New Yorker. Lawyer.
How do you make time to write?
I have flexible hours.
Do you believe in writer’s block?
Yes. I find walks, though not on a beach necessarily, is good for clearing the head.
Tell us a bit about the genre you write and why you love it.
I write contemporary and historical (mostly early Gilded Age) fiction, mostly set in and around New York.
How are you publishing your recent book and why? 
Indie.
Are you an Introvert or an Extrovert?  How does this affect your work?
Introvert.
What is your favorite motivational phrase?
Coming up empty.
What advice would you give to aspiring writers?
Write for yourself.
Where can readers find you on the World Wide Web?

AuThursday – Becca Turner

Tell us a little about yourself and your background?
I’m an author from southwestern Missouri, but I spent the first couple of years of my life in a small town an hour north of Oklahoma City. Somehow I got stuck with an Okie accent and I really love Green Country. I noticed that a lot of contemporary western romances are set in Texas. I was like, okay, but Oklahoma has its fair share of cowboys, so I decided to set a book series in a fictional town near Tulsa. Now I can’t stop writing about cowboys.
How do you make time to write?
I write in Google Docs on my phone. I basically have a word processor anywhere I go. I’ve been known to write while standing in long shopping lines, in restaurants, in cars, and pretty much everywhere.
Do you believe in writer’s block?
Yes. Sometimes I just don’t feel like writing, but I find it’s mostly due to real-life stress or a lack of connection with the characters.
Tell us a bit about the genre you write and why you love it.
Specifically contemporary western romance. I used to write historical westerns and even paranormal western romance, but in the last couple of years, I’ve focused on contemporary. When I was 16, I co-wrote a contemporary western romance with a friend. It never made it to publication, but the story stuck with me. In 2017 (almost twenty years later) another friend invited me to write for a boxed set. So I rewrote the first one, changed a bunch of stuff, and now there are six novellas and five novels in my Only an Okie Will Do series. The next novel should be coming out in late July.
How are you publishing your recent book and why?
I publish everything indie. I signed on with a couple of houses a few years ago, but three went under and I couldn’t see eye to eye with an editor at another. I like being my own boss. It’s also opened up pathways for me to learn book formatting. I also have several works published on a visual novel app called Chapters. It’s been a huge learning curve to create visual characters and get the text on there, but it’s really cool to see the stories come to life. And the readers here are so supportive and wonderful.
Are you an Introvert or an Extrovert?  How does this affect your work?
Definitely an introvert. It gives me a lot of time to write.
What is your favorite motivational phrase?
Hope is the feeling you have that the feeling you have isn’t permanent. – Jean Kerr
What advice would you give to aspiring writers?
Writing isn’t always easy, and it isn’t always fun. It’s full of hardships and disappointment and days of staring at your blank earnings dashboard. But when you touch someone with your words, you know you’re in the right place. Use that to keep going, because if you’re truly meant to be a writer, even after long breaks and slumps and swearing you’re done for good, you’re not done. A reader once told me she was bawling at 12:30 at night over the ending of my book. It moved me to tears because I was amazed that she felt so strongly over my characters. If I’d never gone back to my computer after the last time I said I was done, I’d never have gotten that message, and so many more like it, from readers.
Where can readers find you on the World Wide Web?
Do you have an excerpt you’d like to share with us?
This is from my first novel in the Only an Okie Will Do series, Cowboy Kind of Trouble.
trouble“Life’s not fair.” He slapped the side of the wheelchair. “So I guess I’ll sit my pathetic ass in the house all day from now on so you can keep an eye on me.”
“Wait. Listen to me, please?” She skirted Cielo and moved swiftly to Will’s side. “I didn’t panic because I didn’t think you couldn’t or shouldn’t go somewhere. I worried because…because I care what happens to you.”
His expression didn’t soften. “Why?”
“For the same reason you care that I’m upset after Ronni texts me. I guess we’re friends and we want each other to be all right.” She didn’t want to admit she was attracted to him. That maybe her concern went beyond caretaker and client. Because if she was honest with herself, before Will, her life had felt a lot emptier.
“Because I’m a paycheck.” He stared past her. “If you let me get hurt or killed, you’re out of a job. Maybe permanently.”
“Don’t say things like that. That’s not it.”
He stared sullenly at the pasture. “Right. Whatever. Go back to what you were doing before I messed everything up. Again.”
“Will Baxter, be quiet.”
“Why should I? I know you’d have told me where to stuff my attitude if you could’ve after the first day you were here.” He avoided her gaze. “I’m the last person you—or anyone—wants to deal with. Just admit it.”
She kneeled beside him and put her hand on his bicep. With a few words, she’d wrecked his confidence. “You don’t know everything.”
His back was straight, shoulders square, jaw tight. “I know the truth when I see it. Maybe we’d both be better off if you left for the day.” His comment stung, as he meant it to.
“You’re throwing up that wall to prove to yourself that you’re not worth me caring about you. Well, you’re wrong, just like you were when I first started coming here. I’m not going anywhere.” She leaned forward, her stomach pressed against the arm of his chair. Her face was inches from his. “I do care about you. More than I should.”
“Why?” His voice was a dry whisper.
“I can’t help myself.” She pressed her hands to either side of his face and pulled him closer. Damn it anyway. She kissed him, throwing the rules out the door once again. He pushed his fingers into her hair, holding her close. As though he was hungry for her kiss. As though he’d given it considerable thought. The same way she had. When she wasn’t dreading more bad news from Ronni, she thought about Will. About how they’d talked. How he laughed.

AuThursday -C.N. Mobberly

Tell us a little about yourself and your background?
I’m a 40-year-old single mom to a 7-year-old son who I homeschool. I also help take care of my mother who’s older and slowing down, but still doing all she can to stay active. I’ve always been writing in one-way shape or form since I was a teenager. I struggle with some health issues that I’m working through and hoping to improve.
How do you make time to write?
I try to squeeze it in throughout the day, but usually, get the bulk of my writing done after my son has gone to bed so there are less interruptions and distractions. Setting a timer and sprinting with others helps keep me focused.
Do you believe in writer’s block?
Absolutely. I’ve experienced it before whether I’m stressed about something and the words aren’t flowing or if there’s something going on in the story that I’m trying to work through.
Tell us a bit about the genre you write and why you love it.
I write romance and love to tell love stories. I feel like I can imagine what it might be like for me if I were to meet the man of my dreams and what our relationship could be like. It’s fun to imagine my characters as real people going through the situations in my stories and figuring out how they’d handle them.
How are you publishing your recent book and why? 
I’m going indie all the way. I’m publishing my first book next year and have never been interested in trying to get an agent, query letters, and being at the mercy of a publishing company, etc. I’ve always known I wanted to be the one in charge of my books.
Are you an Introvert or an Extrovert?  How does this affect your work?
Definitely, an introvert, though I do have my extroverted moments, especially when I’m talking about something that gets me excited. It can affect my work because I may not always represent an extroverted person accurately and as I revise I ask myself if it seems like this is the way this character would react, etc. I’ve also had a few alpha readers tell me that I need to work on how I write some of my characters because some of their reactions don’t match their personality, especially if they’re extroverted.
What is your favorite motivational phrase?
One step at a time.
What advice would you give to aspiring writers?
Don’t give up and don’t compare your journey to someone else’s. We all go at different paces and you might be seeing someone who’s been writing and publishing for a long time when you haven’t been working at it for very long at all. Plus we never see the whole picture, we’re really only seeing what that person shares with the world. There could be things behind the scenes we don’t know anything about that affects them and their journey.
Where can readers find you on the World Wide Web?
Do you have an excerpt you’d like to share with us?
This is a scene from the second book in my series. It is a sex scene, so be warned about the language and content.
Fuck. I’ve lost count of how many times this has happened. Lyn’s drunk. Again. And she’s all over me. I can’t keep fighting this shit.
“J… I…” She pants.
“Lyn, you’re drunk. You should go to bed.” She’s on my lap.
“J, please,” she begs.
My lips are drawn to hers. I’ve only had a few drinks, but I can’t help myself. My tongue drives into her mouth as my hands grip her hips hard.
“This is a really bad idea,” I try to insist as she pulls her top over her head and flings it to the floor. Her tits heave up and down in time to her heavy breathing.
“So? Don’t think,” she begs.
I can’t hold back anymore and I bury my face in her chest as she unclasps her bra and lets it fall.
“Shit,” I cup her tits and pull a nipple into my mouth as I suck and she moans.
“Fuck J,” she moans as her head falls back.
“Stand up,” I order. She does what I say as my cock strains against my pants.
She’s on her way to my room before I’m off the sofa.
I walk into my room behind Lyn as she drops her pants and underwear and climbs onto my bed.
“This is a really really bad idea,” I stress as I pull off my pants and climb onto the bed.
“I told you. Stop thinking.” Her body is stretched out on my bed waiting for me as I stare.
Fuck it. I can’t tell how many times I’ve wanted to take her. But she’s my best friend. We’ve made out countless times while she’s been drunk. But she’s always passed out before clothes started coming off. Until now.
“Lyn…” I don’t know how much longer I can resist.
“Jacie, I’ve told you before that I want you,” Lyn whispers.
“That’s just the booze talking,” I insist.
“So? Just go with it.” Lyn sits up on her knees and pulls me onto the bed.
“Are you still on the pill?” I have condoms just in case.
“Of course I am,” she insists.
She tugs at my pants and I manage to pull them off and kick them to the floor.
Just this once. She won’t remember. I will, but it’s been my fantasy for years.
“Jesus, I want you,” I admit.
“Then go for it,” she whispers as she grinds against my hard-on.
My boxers go next and her eyes light up when she sees my erection standing at attention. I kneel on the bed between her thighs and run two fingers along her slit.
“God, you’re drenched.” I gasp as I pull my fingers out and lick them.
“Want a taste first?” Lyn asks as she runs her fingers along her slit and licks them, then moans.
I close my eyes hoping this isn’t a dream. When I open them again, she’s still on my bed and now she’s rubbing her clit looking at me with hooded eyes.
I slide two fingers into her center and feel her walls tense around them. Then my tongue finds her clit and I lose myself as I taste her sweet juices on my tongue.
“Shit, just like that,” she moans as her hips lift. I suck on her clit then lick up her slit with my fingers still thrusting inside her.
“I’m gonna come J.”
“Come on my fingers Lyn ” I’ve ached to say those words.
Her hips keep rhythm with my thrusting as my thumb rubs her clit then my tongue is on her clit again as she cries out and her pussy clenches around my fingers and she rides out her orgasm as I thrust three fingers into her.
“Fuck!” Lyn’s body finally relaxes as she comes down from her climax. “My turn,” she insists as she gets me onto my back and wraps her hand around my shaft.
I hiss as she strokes a few times then rubs the tip of my cock and my pre cum glides over the tip.
Her lips are around my cock before I realize what she’s doing and it hits the back of her throat.
“I’m gonna come, Lyn,” I warn her. Then my hot liquid shoots out and she swallows it as I moan loud and deep.
“Damn! I had no idea you were this good.”
Lyn smiles as she milks my cock dry and licks the drops that seep out.
“I need to ride you,” she whispers as she crawls up and kisses me. I taste my come on her lips and I’m hard all over again. “Round two?”
“Lyn, we shouldn’t…” But she’s straddling me and her pussy is hovering over my cock.
“Why not?” Lyn pouts.
“You’re my best friend,” I insist.
“Are you’re mine. But there’s been this thing between us for years. Why keep fighting it?”
“You’re the one that refused to give in every other time,” I remind her.
“And I’m the one telling you now that I don’t give a fuck anymore. I’m done trying to fight it J.” Lyn lowers herself and touches the tip of my cock with her pussy and I clench my ass cheeks together in anticipation.
“Can we at least use a rubber?” I ask as her eyes pierce mine.
“Why? You think I’m not clean?” Her brows knit together.
“It’s not that. I know you get tested and I’m clean too. Just humor me? Please?” I beg her.
“Fine.” She rolls her eyes, but reaches over and grabs a condom out of my nightstand.
Once she rolls it down my cock she lowers herself onto it. My entire body tenses at the sensation. The one thing I’ve always imagined is happening. I’ve jerked off to thoughts of Lynsey doing just this countless times. I hiss as she pauses for just a second.
“What?” I ask, thinking something’s wrong.
“It just feels so damn good,” she replies breathlessly. She’s slept with God knows how many other guys over the years. I know this isn’t earth-shattering for her, but you’d think it is with the way she’s acting.
Once she’s seated all the way down onto my pelvis she leans forward and kisses my lips. I grab her hips to hold her there a moment longer before she starts riding me. As she pulls away her hands are on my chest and my hands find her tits. I want to look her in the eyes, but my eyes can’t stay open. The sensation of her pussy sliding up and down my cock is too much to handle. I want this to last, but my hips start thrusting in time with her movements and I don’t know how long I can last. I can’t ever remember it feeling this good with any other girl before. I’m no ladies man, but I’ve had my fair share that’s for sure.
Lyn moans as she pinches one of my nipples and my hands squeeze her tits. “Faster,” I urge her as I feel my climax building.
“God, I’m close!” She moans.
“Come on my cock Lyn, I’m begging you,” I manage to get out as she lifts up then falls back down and finally grinds on my dick as her release hits her. My body lets go and I pull her to me as mine takes over my entire being. Her head is tucked into my neck as she slows down and we both come down from our highs.
“J?” She whispers after a moment of lying still, her still on top of me and my cock, now limp, still inside of her.
“Yeah?” I don’t know what’s going through her mind, and I don’t know if I really want to know.
“I think I’m gonna be sick,” she says as she hops up and darts into my bathroom.
Well, that sure killed the mood, but I sit up, grab some tissues and pull the condom off my cock then toss it on the floor. I’ll clean it up later.
In the bathroom, I sit on the floor next to Lyn and rub her back as she pukes in the toilet. After a few minutes, she sits back on her feet and rests her head on my shoulder.
“At least I made it to the bathroom,” she says then chuckles.
“True.” I can’t argue with that. After a few more minutes I help her back to my room and into bed, but get one of my shirts on her before she passes out. I climb in next to her and cover us up knowing she won’t remember any of this the next day. She won’t, but I sure as hell will.

AuThursday – Kathryn Halberg

HalbergHeadshot2022Tell us a little about yourself and your background?
I write spicy, contemporary romances that take place largely in the Cincinnati area, where I’m from. When not writing, I work full-time for a local university and am an unpaid shuttle driver for my children’s various sporting activities 😉
How do you make time to write?
Insomnia.
Do you believe in writer’s block?
Not in those words, but I sometimes have to pause to wait for a character to better develop in my mind, and find out more about what they really want.
Tell us a bit about the genre you write and why you love it.
I was always told to write what you know. There’s nothing I know more than the here and now! I love to write contemporary romances that feature strong, independent women in fairly realistic situations. I try to avoid drama for the sake of drama.
How are you publishing your recent book and why?
Both (Indie and Traditional) – I just published the second book of my trilogy with GenZ Publishing, and am self-publishing the third book of the series to learn the ropes. I attended a 20Books conference last fall that really made me want to examine my options.
Are you an Introvert or an Extrovert?  How does this affect your work?
Ambivert. I grew up a full-fledged introvert and parenting has made me come out of my shell a bit more. This helps me be able to better grasp the needs of my characters.
What is your favorite motivational phrase?
No one can make you feel inferior without your consent. ~Eleanor Roosevelt
What advice would you give to aspiring writers?
Like a good wine, let your work breathe before you enjoy it again. My best work comes when I edit a manuscript at least six months after I wrote it.
Where can readers find you on the World Wide Web?
KathrynHalberg.com and @KathrynHalberg on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and TikTok.
Do you have an excerpt you’d like to share with us?
She grabbed a soft pretzel and lemonade and waited for Carlie to show. Why was it that shopping depression meant eating more carbs, which increased the likelihood of more shopping depression? It’s a vicious cycle, she thought as she tore off another bite of buttered therapy. It really wasn’t fair. She had hella good body image and loved her curves, but put her in a dressing room and her self-esteem fled like an autobahn speed demon.

AuThursday – Suzanne Baltsar

Tell us a little about yourself and your background?
I grew up a dancer and theatre kid, always into the arts. In grades school, I wrote NSYNC fan-fiction which was my first step into what would become me writing romance. After college, I formed a film company and produced a couple of things, including a feature that I wrote and directed. After that I thought, if I could write a movie, I could totally write a book. My debut book, Trouble Brewing, came out in 2018, and now I’m in an MFA program, always working on the next project.
How do you make time to write?
I have two little kids at home and recently left my job to actually have more time to write while they are at pre-school. Being in school for writing forces me to be more disciplined about it because I have papers to write, but I need to write. It helps clear my head, so I just put aside time to do it. If I don’t, I get cranky.
Do you believe in writer’s block?
Yes. HAHAHA. For sure.
Tell us a bit about the genre you write and why you love it.
I currently write romance and women’s fiction. I love romance because there is always a happy ending. It’s a comfort in this wild world to find joy.
How are you publishing your recent book and why? 
I am indie publishing a 4 book series this summer because the last few books that my agent had in the submission were all passed on so I figured I have nothing to lose.
Are you an Introvert or an Extrovert?  How does this affect your work?
I’m an extroverted introvert, and I’ve never really thought of how it affects my work. But now that I am, since I have always had jobs that require me to be “on” all the time when I come home I’m very quiet and need my space, which is what writing provides for me. It clears my head of clutter.
What is your favorite motivational phrase?
What’s the worse thing to happen? You can fail. So what? Try again.
What advice would you give to aspiring writers?
Run your own race. It’s a marathon, not a sprint.
Where can readers find you on the World Wide Web?
Do you have an excerpt you’d like to share with us?
I literally wrote this line a few minutes ago and it still has me giggling…
“She was out there crying over you, so I’d say so, you fucking potato.”

AuThursday – Adele Buck

Tell us a little about yourself and your background?
 
I’m a self-published author of five romance novels and one novella. I’ve recently started writing more in my age range (>40) and I LOVE it! I’m also querying a non-romance (women’s fiction).
 
How do you make time to write?
 
I don’t have kids and my husband loves to cook. It’s as disgustingly simple as that.
 
Do you believe in writer’s block?
 
I believe that there are places in various stories were writers get stuck, for sure. I’m not sure I’d call it writer’s block for me – it’s more that I have lost track of something (stakes, motivation, conflict usually.).
 
Tell us a bit about the genre you write and why you love it.
 
I write mostly romance and I love the challenge of it – it’s harder than it looks to take two people (or more, though I only write couples) and believably get them through the story so that they fall in love on the other end!
 
How are you publishing your recent book and why?
 
Indie. I had an agent for a few years, but wasn’t selling anything to New York publishers. We finally amicably split and now I’m looking for a new agent while I self publish.
 
Are you an Introvert or Extrovert?  How does this affect your work?
 
I’m what I call a “performative introvert.” I definitely need alone time to recharge, but I was also an actress and a singer in my younger years, so I also love applause!
 
What is your favorite motivational phrase?
 
I don’t have one.
 
What advice would you give to aspiring writers?
 
Surround yourself with astute, generous critique partners – and be one in return.
 
Where can readers find you on the World Wide Web?
 
Do you have an excerpt you’d like to share with us?
 
“I’m serious.” Vati took a long pull of her drink. “You have a leaky pipe, you call a master plumber. You want to bait your ex-husband into looking like the dumpster fire he is, you—”
 
“Hire a master…baiter?” Tove broke in, laughing in spite of herself. “What, like a boy toy? Do Anthony one better by bringing someone even younger than Emily?” She snorted and rolled her eyes. “Even if I wanted to do something like that, Anthony would see straight through it. It’s absolutely not my style. Also utterly hypocritical, considering how I’ve been rolling my eyes at his increasingly younger wives for years.”
 
– From The Wedding Bait (an >50 romance novella)