Thank you for this interview! I’d like to know more about you as a person first. What do you do when you’re not writing?
When I am not writing I am working in a very busy garden center and hanging out with my two children, Jacob and Braden. Grilling outdoors, going for walks and taking trips to the river to get out of the heat.
When did you start writing?
Around junior high, high school. I wrote poetry mostly. (super, super emo stuff!) Then I found my way to some writer forums and groups some eight or so years ago and started posting my stories in them. My stories were popular, I had a large following so I decided it was time to sit and write some books.
In writing your book, did you travel anywhere for research?
At the time I wrote my book I was living in Tucson – where most of it is set. I did take a few trips to Mt. Lemmon to get it right. The beginning of The Island is set in Kauai, Hawaii. I’ve never been, so I did tons of research and used MapQuest quite a bit to make sure I had travel times correct and so on. Research is the best part!
As a published author, what would you say was the most pivotal point of your writing life?
Having the guts to hit that publish button. Looking at what I’d just written and knowing how in love with my characters and story I was, and wanting other people to fall in love with them as well.
What is your favorite part about writing steamy contemporary romance and what is your least favorite?
Oh it’s just so fun! I get to live a bit vicariously through my characters. Wear the awesome clothes, bed the hot, unattainable guys. And mostly, bring a bit of fun, fantasy and escape to our everyday lives. My least favorite would be having people think that I just write smut and that there is no real story to it.
If you could go anywhere in the world to start writing your next book, where would that be and why?
I would hole up in a beautiful, secluded cabin next to the water. I find nature to be quite an inspiration. Plus the quiet and lack of distractions would be amazing. I very much have shiny squirrel syndrome.
If you had 4 hours of extra time today, what would you do?
Write! And maybe take care of the growing laundry pile…
Where would you like to set a story that you haven’t done yet?
In a fictional fantasy world of my own creation. I have a paranormal post-apocalyptic story that keeps swirling around in my head. Someday, I will write it. Maybe under a new pen name?
Why was writing The Island so important to you?
It was based on a dream (no, not a dirty one) that I had about these three people. I kept finding the idea so intriguing, I couldn’t shake it from my head. Three people in love, how it would work, would people accept it?. When my father was diagnosed with terminal cancer, writing The Island helped me through that time in my life. Instead of crying every day, I moved that emotional energy onto my pages. The day I published my book I cried because so much of myself and my father came out in my writing.
Where do you get your best ideas and why do you think that is?
The bath tub. I swear! I’m a really hyper, high strung person. I think the bath tub is just about the only place where I actually relax and let my mind settle down. Usually after a bath I hop out and get right on my laptop.
What are you currently working on? Do you have any new projects released in the coming months? If so, tell us about them.
Yes. I am currently writing a book called Rocking Autumn. It’s the story of high-school sweethearts Jax and Autumn. Jax left their small town after graduation to pursue his career in music, without ever saying goodbye to Autumn. Now it’s ten years later and he’s determined to win her back – which she doesn’t make very easy for him. The story follows them through re-kindling their relationship and dealing with a long distance relationship. I’m also outlining a story I consider to be my passion project. It’s titled Girl Harbor, and all I can say right now is that it is a coming of age tale that isn’t pretty.
Part II This or That?
Q: Coffee or Soda? Is this a real question? Coffee!
Q: Sausage or Bacon? Bacon
Q: Exercise in a gym or at home? Home
Q: Your life is a movie would you rather be cast for an Action movie or a Comedy? Comedy. I often think I am living in one anyway.
Q: Alpha male or Rockstar? Both so yummy. I’d choose an alpha male.
Q: Winter or Summer? Winter, I hate the heat!
Q: Rock or Country music? Rock…every day of the week.