When Keeping Secrets is Deadly
Posted by Sarah Andre
Is this the smoking hot sex scene you submitted to a contest and won?
Ha, what a way to start! I was going to thank you for hosting me today, but…
Just kidding. 😉 Yes, the first big love scene between Mick and Jenna is the one I submitted to the Between the Sheets contest back in 2011. I received perfect scores from two of three editors/agents, but the competition must have been fierce because I took 2nd place.
2nd Place?! I find that hard to believe. 😦
Oh, hello K&T readers. Sorry to start the interview without formally introducing you to today’s author. You see, she’s one of our own and we are SO PROUD OF HER! Scroll down a couple of inches and Gwen Hernandez’s picture is on the left…there she is! Today is her debut of BLIND FURY. I had the honor (i.e., beat out everyone else pictured on the left) to read it in advance and host her today. I can assure you BLIND FURY is a fast-paced, can’t-put-down read. Ask my husband…his dinner was burned; a sure sign that this is an author headed for the best-seller lists.
So let’s get back to the interview: Tell us how you were able to make Mick so authentic? Specifically: suppressing the daily horror he faced fighting terrorists, the ‘itch’ to return to that life-or-death existence once he came home and the genuine brotherhood camaraderie/lingo?
I’m so glad you found Mick authentic. I read a lot of books, blogs, and articles about military and private security contractors (PSCs), but the book that really brought Mick to life for me was Big Boy Rules by Steve Fainaru. It’s about PSCs in Iraq and what motivates them to work in that environment. The Long Walk by Brian Castner, about a former EOD officer trying to leave the war behind, is another good one.
Some of my sense for how men interact comes from my reading, but it also comes from years of working in male-dominated fields or workplaces. Oh, and I’m an Army/Navy brat who spent time in Air Force training, and married an Air Force officer, so that helps too. 😉
One major mystery in BLIND FURY is a dark secret Mick promised to keep from the sister of his dying best friend. (And he keeps it from us, readers, it’ll drive you crazy!) This secret ultimately puts their lives in danger, but he promised. Did you know in advance what the (mind-blowing) secret would be, or did you hope to come up with something as you wrote the story?
I had a pretty good idea of what the secret would be when I started, though some of the specifics changed over time.
When did you conceptualize this plot and what triggered it?
I started this book back in 2010, and the initial spark came from reading Blackwater by Jeremy Scahill. He was writing about the scandal surrounding Blackwater (private security company) and its contractors, and I wanted to explore what it would be like to be a good guy working in that type of environment.
Any current actor/actress in mind for Mick and Jenna, when Hollywood calls (and they will!)
I would love it if Hollywood called (thank you!), but I’m awful at finding actors to match the vision in my head. Bodies are easier though. I think Blind Fury’s cover captures Mick’s physique quite nicely. 😉
You’re so very polite! I would have said: “I think BLIND FURY’S cover captures Mick’s smokin’ hot bod just fine!” 😉
The cover mentions A Men of Steele Novel. What is Steele and how many novels are planned for this series?
Steele refers to Steele Security, which admittedly is a pretty loose connection in Blind Fury. Mick’s friend, Kurt Steele, has a company that provides personal security and security assessments. In this book, Kurt and some of his guys help out Mick and Jenna, but they’ll be the heroes in the later books. I have a least four stories in mind so far.
Any tentative publishing dates and titles we can look forward to?
Right now I’m working on a short novel starring Jenna’s friend, Tara, who will get her happily ever after with a new guy at Steele. 😉 Her book, Blind Justice, should be out by May of this year.
Beyond that, I’m hoping to get Blind Ambition (Dan’s book) done before fall, and one more as-yet-untitled book (Kurt’s story) out early next year.
(Readers: get to work thinking up a Blind __ title.)
Because of your husband’s work your family has moved many times. Where have you lived and which place was your favorite? Why?
If you go back to my childhood, the list gets really long—if I had a theme song, it would be “I’ve Been Everywhere” by Johnny Cash—but my husband’s Air Force career has taken us to Oklahoma, Ohio, California, Virginia/DC, and Alabama. We’re back in Virginia now, but hoping to get to California again (or Europe). I’m a west coast, beach girl at heart.
Meeee tooo! Fingers crossed you’re transferred to Orange County and I can live in your garage apt. (Hey, a girl can dream!)
As Supreme Goddess of Scrivener (software for authors), you’ve been famous in the writing world long before this debut release. Which was easier—writing fiction or a detailed, humorous Dummies book?
Ha, I could get used to Supreme Goddess. 😉 Not sure about famous, but maybe known in certain circles. (See Readers? She’s so very polite! She’s crazy-famous to us writers.) Writing Scrivener For Dummies was definitely easier. My sense of humor is a good match for the Dummies line, and I wrote a lot of technical documentation in the years before I turned to writing for fun. Plus, I can outline like a champ for nonfiction, but I’m a complete seat-of-the-pants writer with my fiction. That was quite a shock to this left-brained gal, but I’ve learned to go with it.
On to the nosy, mind-your-own-business type of questions our readers have been waiting for! Novel you are presently reading?
I’m between books, but I just finished Romancing the Duke by Tessa Dare. Loved it.
Food you make a pig of yourself eating?
Corn tortilla chips. And Justin’s dark chocolate peanut butter cups. Sometimes together.
(Tiny gagging sound.) How…uh…unusual. Favorite movie or TV show?
I have such a hard time picking favorites, but my current TV obsession is BBC’s Sherlock.
Meeee tooo! Benedict Cumberbatch (sigh.) I even like saying his name…
Well, I know you’re a private person, so I’ll stop being nosy (perhaps Carey can throw in her famous ‘lightning round’ in the comments section…snort!) On a serious note: We are SO thrilled for your romantic suspense debut, Gwen, and I personally cannot recommend this riveting story enough!
And now you’ve officially finished your very first K&T romantic suspense interview! 🙂
Thanks so much for hosting me today, Sarah!
Gwen is giving a free copy of BLIND FURY to one lucky commenter. Answer both of these questions (if you dare!): “Have you ever had an important or huge secret to keep? Did you keep your promise or spill the beans?”
Check back on Friday to see if you won!
CLICK HERE TO READ THE BACK COVER OF BLIND FURY.
Please join us February 27th, when Sharon interviews Heather Ashby. Heather will tell us everything about her newest release, Forget Me Not, and her sexy hero, Sky Crawford.