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Diana Miller Braves the Actors Studio Questionnaire

Today is a special week here at Kiss and Thrill as we celebrate three fabulous romantic suspense authors with a special connection: all three are 2011 Golden Heart® finalists.

FatalTrust_final-200x300We host a lot of Golden Heart finalists here at Kiss and Thrill, but there is something really special about hosting women from the same year (and six of our K&T ladies finaled in 2011 together), because everyone who has finaled in the GH discovers that the true prize in this contest is the friendships that form with the other finalists. Diana Miller, Krista Hall, and Shelley Coriell are the best example of why—incredible authors and wonderful people I am honored and thrilled to know.

You may remember today’s guest, Diana Miller, from her visit to Kiss and Thrill with her debut novel Dangerous Affairs. I loved Dangerous Affairs and gave it five bubbly bathtubs for being a perfect sink-in-the-tub-and-enjoy read. Today I’m so thrilled to have Diana return so I can tell our readers how much I enjoyed her latest release, Fatal Trust, another wonderful 5-bathtub read.

5 bathtubs

Fatal Trust has everything I love in romantic suspense: a smart heroine, a strong hero, wonderful chemistry, and lots of surprising twists. It’s a rare book that will keep me up until two AM, and Fatal Trust was one of those. I will read anything Diana Miller writes and am eagerly awaiting her next release. (Seriously, Diana, send it to me. Now. I’m not above offering bribes.)

For this interview, Diana opted to face down my James Lipton impersonation and answer the questionnaire from Inside the Actors Studio, and she gives one of the best answers to the last question I’ve ever heard, on or off the show.

Today Diana is giving away a $25 Amazon gift card to one lucky commenter. Please check back on Friday to see if you are our winner!

Diana MillerWhat is your favorite word?  “Schokolade” (pronounced “shok-oh-lah-dah”) which is one of the few words I remember from high school German. It’s fun to say—actually sounds a little sexy—and it means “chocolate”.

What is your least favorite word? Phlegm.

What turns you on? Kindness (preferably accompanied by great pecs and a tight butt).

What turns you off?  Assholish behavior.

What sound or noise do you love? My daughter’s voice, although now I hear it mostly over the phone since she lives 1500 miles away and is getting married this summer, so she won’t be moving back. Trust me, they really do grow up too fast!

What sound or noise do you hate? Microphone feedback, especially from a microphone I’m using (public speaking is already painful enough without adding that).

What is your favorite curse word? At the risk of sounding like a writer, I think the perfect swear word depends on the circumstances and setting and how upset/angry/agitated I am (which is another way of saying that now that I no longer have young, impressionable kids around, I swear too much, especially when I’ve got a deadline).

What profession other than your own would you like to attempt? I always wanted to be a soap opera star—you get to wear great clothes and shoes and spend your time with hot men, and you’ve got writers who make sure you never suffer the frustration of thinking of the perfect comeback five minutes AFTER the conversation ends. Unfortunately I have no acting ability, so I had to be satisfied making the heroine of my debut novel DANGEROUS AFFAIRS a soap star.  As a  (slightly) more realistic career option, I’ve always thought it would be fun to be a luxury hotel and resort critic.  Getting paid to stay in, enjoy, and evaluate places I can’t afford (preferably ones that feature fabulous restaurants)—how great would that be? And how do you get a job like that?

What profession would you not like to do? I’m claustrophobic, so my idea of hell is working as a coal miner or at any other job that requires being underground or in tight, windowless quarters.

If heaven exists, what would you like to hear God say when you arrive at the pearly gates? “I’m so happy you’re here. I want you to write my memoirs.”  FINALLY I’ll write something no publisher will dare reject!

To enter the drawing to win a $25 Amazon gift card, tell us what profession other than your own would you like to attempt, and don’t forget to check back on Friday to see if you are Diana’s winner!

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When she was eight, Diana decided she wanted to be Nancy Drew. But no matter how many garbage cans she dug through, conversations she “accidentally” overheard, and attics she searched, she never found a single mysterious letter, hidden staircase, or anything else even remotely mysterious or suspenseful. She worked as a lawyer, a soda jerk,a stay-at-home mom, a hospital admitting clerk, and a conference host for events ranging from Lutheran music to the International BB Gun competition. She spent long hours volunteering in a nineteenth century mansion allegedly full of secrets and a few ghosts. Still no luck.

Diana ultimately decided the only way she was going to inject any mystery or suspense into her otherwise satisfying life was by writing about it. A five time nominee for the Romance Writers of America Golden Heart award, she’s thrilled to be releasing her Golden Heart winner Dangerous Affairs, a romantic suspense novel that shows not everyone in her home state is Minnesota Nice.

As a way to avoid avoid housework, Diana mastered gourmet cooking and once roasted an entire turkey for her daughter’s kindergarten class. She now works out while watching the Food Network as motivation. In addition to food, Diana loves music, history, old movies, and traveling with her Norwegian-born husband.

Diana lives in the Twin Cities with her family and a Wheaten terrier puppy. She’s still on the lookout for some real life mystery and suspense.

Fatal Series Author Marie Force Joins Rachel Inside the Actors Studio

Today I am thrilled to welcome Marie Force to Kiss and Thrill! Marie is the author of the intense and enticing romantic suspense Fatal Series in addition to the McCarthys of Gansett Island and other bestselling contemporary romance series.

Book 6 of the Fatal Series, FATAL MISTAKE, released in June to the great excitement of her fans, who launched the book onto the New York Times bestseller list, debuting at #20 on the ebook list.

FatalMistakefinal200x300

A critical error.

A Cinderella season cut short.

A star player murdered.

D.C. is recovering from angry riots after one player’s mistake blew the D.C. Federals’ chance at the World Series, and Lt. Sam Holland is determined to unravel the twisted web of motives behind the star center fielder’s death. Was it a disgruntled fan, a spurned lover or a furious teammate?

While Sam digs through clues, her husband, U.S. Senator Nick Cappuano, fights for his political life in the final days of his reelection campaign as financial irregularities threaten his future. It’s a distraction Nick can ill afford with Sam in the midst of another high-profile murder investigation and both of them trying to help their adopted son, Scotty, cope with the murder of a ball player he admired.

 Determined to bring the killer to justice, Sam must root out the truth before another mistake proves fatal.

Marie has a special treat for our readers today, she is giving away the entire Fatal Series in ebook to 1 lucky commenter. If you’ve been dying to to read this series, here is your chance to nab them all. And to my Kiss and Thrill sisters – no fair to quit the blog so you’ll be eligible to enter the drawing. 😉

Marie chose my favorite type of interview for today’s blog, because I get to put on my James Lipton costume (Will Ferrell does him better, but since we’re not doing video I’m going to claim to come in a close second).

So now, without further delay, are Marie’s answers to my questions, unabashedly stolen from James Lipton, who adapted them from French television personality Bernard Pivot, who modeled his questions after the Proust Questionnaire.

1. What is your favorite word? Kerfuffle

2. What is your least favorite word? Lover

3. What turns you on? Intelligence

4. What turns you off? Ignorance

5. What sound or noise do you love? My kids’ laughter

6. What sound or noise do you hate? Rap music

7. What is your favorite curse word? Fuck. Is there another one?

8. What profession other than your own would you like to attempt? None.

9. What profession would you not like to do? Accounting.

10. If heaven exists, what would you like to hear God say when you arrive at the pearly gates? All your favorite people didn’t make the cut. Wouldn’t you rather be with them Down Under?

I have to admit, my answer is the same or similar to Marie’s for at least five of these (including #7). How about you? How many of your answers would line up with Marie’s?

One lucky commenter will win this:

Marie Force is the New York Times, USA Today and Wall Street Journal best-selling, award-winning author of more than 25 contemporary romances, including The McCarthys of Gansett Island Series, the Fatal Series, the Treading Water Series and numerous stand-alone books. Her new series, The Green Mountain Series, begins Feb. 4, 2014 with “All You Need Is Love.”

While her husband was in the Navy, Marie lived in Spain, Maryland and Florida, and she is now settled in her home state of Rhode Island. She is the mother of two teenagers and two feisty dogs, Brandy and Louie.

Subscribe to updates from Marie about new books. Join one of her many reader groups.

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Stepping Inside the Actors Studio with Julie Ann Walker

Julie Ann Walker

Julie Ann Walker

This week I am thrilled to welcome Julie Ann Walker back to Kiss and Thrill! Julie’s latest book, THRILL RIDE, released April 2nd and to celebrate this eagerly awaited sequel, I decided to put Julie in the hot seat, James Lipton-style. Lipton (photo below courtesy of Wikimedia Commons) is the host of the Bravo TV series Inside the Actors Studio, and he always wraps up the interview by asking the subject the same ten questions.

James Lipton by David Shankbone

James Lipton by David Shankbone

Since this is Julie, and I know she won’t mind, I’m going to sit back and enjoy a cocktail while James does all the work.

1.) What is your favorite word?

It’s too dirty. I can’t share it here. LOL! Just kidding. I love the word “flibbertigibbet.” I mean, come on! It sounds made up, completely nonsensical, like something a drunk man in a bar would come up and say to woman. “Ya wanna head back to m’place and play with my flibbertigibbet?” *hiccup*

2.) What is your least favorite word?

Now, you’ll probably think I’m crazy, but I loathe, despise, and abhor the word “slurp.” It’s like the words slim, slug, and burp got together and had a threesome and the child born of the unholy union was slurp. Slurp is supposed to denote both an action and a sound effect, and both things are repugnant. :-/

3.) What turns you on?

Oooh, that’s easy. A good wine. Give me a nice bottle of wine, a warm night with a soft breeze, and I’m a sure thing. (Believe me when I say my husband considers this information when planning vacations. *wink, wink*)

4.) What turns you off?

Without a doubt, that would be feet. Feet are usually ugly, sometimes smelly, and oftentimes either obscenely dry or disgustingly sweaty. Feet have always grossed me out. And some of that might stem from having my older sister shove her big toe in my mouth if she caught me sticking my tongue out at her, or if she caught be yawning, or sneezing… She was a sadistic child, and now I’m scarred. For life.

Thrill-Ride-Cover

5.) What sound or noise do you love?

I should say it’s the smooth, guttural rumble of a V-twin engine, right? Considering badass custom motorcyclists are kind of my shtick? And I do adore that sound. It’s visceral and exciting. But more than anything else I love the soft resonance of waves shushing against the shoreline. Perhaps it’s because I grew up on a lake and currently live on one, but something about that noise is so soothing, so comforting… feels like home.

6.) What sound or noise do you hate?

The alarm clock. Of course, this could have something to do with the fact that I’m not, repeat not, a morning person. The instant that meep, meep, meep wakes me out of a deep sleep I want to cut someone. Seriously… cut them.

7.) What is your favorite curse word?

Hands down, that would be “asshat.” The word is so concise and at the same time so definitive, summing up a person who has their head stuck up their butt in just two syllables. I’m a sucker for brevity when it’s wielded with precision. LOL! Perhaps it’s the writer in me!

8.) What profession other than your own would you like to attempt?

I think it would be fun to be a foreign correspondent for a big news agency. I imagine myself exposing corrupt politicians, interviewing leaders of state, slinking across unfriendly borders in the middle of the night to get the next big scoop… Then again, like anything else, the idea of foreign correspondence is probably far more romantic than the reality.

9.) What profession would you not like to do?

Anything that has to do with garbage or human waste. I have a weak stomach. And smells can get to me quicker than anything else. The aroma of chicken skin left in the trashcan for a couple of days has been known to make me to blow chunks into the kitchen sink. Just sayin’…

10.) If heaven exists, what would you like to hear God say when you arrive at the pearly gates?

Whew! Didn’t expect to see you here! 😉

Today Julie wants our readers to answer question 3: What turns you on? We will randomly choose from the comments a winner who will receive a signed copy of THRILL RIDE!

THRILL RIDE BY JULIE ANN WALKER

He’s Gone Rogue…

Ex-navy SEAL Rock Babineaux is as Cajun as they come—spicy, sexy, and more than a bit wicked. But would he actually betray his country? Even his best friends on the special-ops Black Knights team aren’t sure they can trust him. Now the target of a massive manhunt, Rock knows the only way to protect the team—especially his partner, Vanessa—is to run…

She Won’t Back Down…

Rock might think he can outmaneuver them all, but he hasn’t counted on how stubborn Vanessa Cordero can be. And she refuses to cut him loose. Sure, her partner has his secrets, but there’s no one in the world she’d rather have by her side in a tight spot. Which is good because she and Rock are about to get very tight…

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Julie Ann Walker is the New York Times and USA Today Bestselling Author of the Black Knights Inc. romantic suspense series.  Look for the first four books in her fast-paced series: Hell On Wheels (August 2012) In Rides Trouble (September 2012) Rev It Up (October 2012) and Thrill Ride (April 2013). For more information, please visit www.julieannwalker.com or follow her on Facebook www.facebook.com/jawalkerauthor and/or Twitter @JAWalkerAuthor.

To Purchase THRILL RIDE:

Amazon | Barnes and Noble | Books-a-Million | IndieBound | Target | Sourcebooks | Discover a New Love

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