Okay, I can’t resist. Sparkle Abbey got me so excited, I just had to share some photos of the great pets we girls keep talking about behind the scenes. Hope you enjoy them as much as we have. Don’t forget to Scroll to the end to find out which three readers won copies of Sparkle Abbey books!
Make sure you join us on Tuesday as our own Lena Diaz interviews the thrilling Rita Herron! And now the Winners of a Sparkle Abbey book each are: Effie’s dad; Helen Rabin; and Morgan K. Wyatt! Please make sure you contact us within the next ten days with your information.
We all love our pets, but how many of us are willing to name ourselves after them? Find out where the writing team of Sparkle Abbey got their names and how their pets fit in to their mystery series. Plenty of laughs and interesting facts about cats and dogs that paint, plastic surgeon transvestites, and beauty queens who fight over inheritances and men.
I know you’ll enjoy!
And if you leave a comment telling us about why your own pet (or your neighbor’s pet, or your imaginary pet) should be included in it’s own book, THREE lucky commenters will win a copy of one of the books below!
Tags: Anita Carter, author interviews, Beauty Queens, Books about Pets, Cats, Desperate Housedogs, Desperate Housewives, Diana Belchase, Dogs, Dogs who paint, Drag Queen Plastic Surgeons, free book, Get Fluffy, giveaway, Inheritances, Kitty Kitty Bang Bang, Mary Lee Woods, Murder Mysteries, Painting Cats, Pet Artists, Pets, prize, Romantic Suspense, Sparkle Abbey, Suspense, Writing Duos, Writing Teams, Writing with a Partner
Who doesn’t love Cherry Adair books? She’s an incredible writer, the prolific author of over 32 bestselling, suspenseful action adventures. In print interviews, she’s fun — but in person? Well, this firecracker is hysterically funny, will keep you on your toes, and is absolutely not to be missed.
Cherry sat down with me a few months ago to tell me a little about her books, her life, and how she got both her wonderful Montana accent and a life coach named Murgatroyd. Remember to leave a comment below to be entered to win a copy of Ice Cold!
Hope you enjoy her as much as I do!
So, today’s question is do you have a secret person, real or imaginary who gives you that boost — or should I say kick you know where — when you need one?
Thanks Cherry for stopping by! Don’t forget everyone, to leave a comment below. One lucky commenter will win a digital copy of Cherry’s newest, hottest release in the T-FLAC series, Ice Cold! (See the trailer Here.) So make sure you’re entered by commenting! Cherry will be stopping by today and tomorrow to answer questions, too!
Tags: Action Adventure, Afterglow, Best selling fiction, Books, Cherry Adair, Cutter Cay, Diana Belchase, Drawing, Fiction, free book, Heroes, humor, Ice Cold, Life Coaches, Lodestone, Montana, mystery, novels, prize, reading, Romance, Romantic Suspense, South Africa, Suspense, Sweepstakes, T-Flac, Texas, Thriller, Vortex, writing
It started innocently enough,
Lena lobbed a cyber spitball. Diana retaliated with an e-eraser. But when the poisoned quills began splaying terse notes across electronic desktops it really became too much. Someone had to win the honor of interviewing Joyce Lamb and it wasn’t going to be pretty.
In the ultimate battle, the two authors initially went separate ways. Lena interviewed Joyce on paper. Diana mounted a sneak attack and did a video interview. Finally, in a shocking revelation, they realized, that like chocolate and peanut butter (okay you have to be my age to get that joke), they work much better together than apart.
Whew. It was getting scary there for a while folks!
So, here we present our Kiss and Thrill threesome — er — Joyce Lamb well-done — okay, a joint interview of Joyce Lamb by Diana and Lena doing what they both do best — together!
Lena: Thanks Diana! I forgive you for the e-eraser throwing (rubs bruise on side of head.) And welcome, Joyce Lamb, to the Kiss and Thrill blog today. It was so fun meeting you at RWA nationals in Anaheim this year.
Diana: Yes, Welcome Joyce!
Joyce: Thanks so much for having me, Lena and Diana!
Diana: We’re so glad you could be here today. I’ll let Lena run with the questions in print since we did the video below. See you in a sec!
Lena: I guess the most obvious question is – Who is Joyce Lamb?
Joyce: Well, that would be me and about a hundred old ladies living in the South. I have a Google alert set up for my name, and it’s shocking how many times I get an e-mail saying I’m mentioned somewhere, and it’s in an obit for a Joyce Lamb who lived/lives in the South. I’ve died a lot lately!
Lena: Yikes! I think I’d turn off my Google alerts if I was seeing my name pop up in obituaries (shiver). How long have you been writing?
Joyce: I wrote my first novel at 17 on my dad’s old electric typewriter. I’d graduated from high school early and immediately started college but with only a few classes at first. I got really bored really fast. So I entertained myself by writing. So, hmm, let’s do the math … I’ve been entertaining myself for 29 years. I suppose all that’s changed is the technology.
Lena: What genre(s) do you write?
Joyce: Romantic suspense. I love action/adventure movies and TV shows. So I write what I love to watch and read.
Lena: Me too! Give me some Die Hard or Criminal Minds any day. Love it. What would your readers be surprised to learn about you?
Joyce: They might be surprised to learn that I’m a full-time copy editor at USA Today in the Money section. As far from romance fiction as you can get! I do the Happy Ever After blog in addition to the copy editing, which can be a real handful. But I love it. And if anyone needs me to explain credit-default swaps, I can do that.
Lena: Thanks for the fun offer to talk credit-default swaps, but we need to get back to the interview. Please tell us about the USA Today HEA blog – how it came to be, your role in it.
Joyce: It was all about timing. True Vision (True #1) won a Daphne du Maurier award last summer, right about the time USA Today hired a digital books editor. When he introduced himself and congratulated me, I grabbed my moment and pitched the idea for a romance novels blog that would be the first ever on a mainstream newspaper’s platform. We already had a very popular video-games blog, so I pitched it as “romance novels are to women what video games are to men.” He loved the idea and here we are.
Lena: Congrats on the Daphne win! And I absolutely love the USA Today HEA blog. Can you tell us about your current release?
Joyce: Flash Heat came out in e-book format in June. It’s about a newspaper photographer who has in her possession an incriminating photo that someone is desperate to keep secret. The very hunky star reporter helps her figure out who, what, where, why and how, and along the way they have some pretty funny conversations and some steamy sex. Cole and Bailey are among my favorite couples that I’ve created. Their banter is a lot of fun.
Lena: Sounds like a lot of fun. Let’s get a little more personal for a moment. I’m going to insert some pictures of your kitty-cats, just because they’re so cute I can’t help it. And you can go ahead and tell us about your biggest fear.
Joyce: Dying in a plane crash. I’m not afraid of flying, though. Nervous, sure, but not fearful. I’m just afraid of the plane going down. Once when I fell asleep on a plane, I awoke to that intense sense of falling, like you get when you plunge down that first steep incline on a roller coaster. The plane had hit an air pocket and lost about a thousand feet in altitude all it once. Freaked me out big-time. So now I’m afraid of that sense of falling.
Lena: That would have terrified me! Let’s lighten things up a bit. What would your dream vacation be?
Joyce: Two weeks in a fancy beach house with my closest friends and family.
Lena: I’m more of a mountain girl myself, but then again, I live near the beach so maybe I’m jaded. Do you believe romance books present an unrealistic view of love and relationships?
Joyce: I think romance books present a “fictional” view of love and relationships, for the most part. Just as spy novels and movies present a fictional version of spying. It’s fantasy. Entertainment. And we all know the difference!
Lena: Okay, let’s go with something a bit deeper. What’s your opinion of the current trend to take classic literary works and write new books using those characters? Example – Jane Austen Fan Fiction?
Joyce: I’m torn on this. I find it fun, but I also think fan fiction shouldn’t come with a price tag. It’s OK to enjoy playing with the story and the characters. Share it with your friends and online, but making money off of it turns me off. I don’t imagine that if Jane Austen were still around she would be all that pleased to know that writers are not only making money off of something she worked really hard on but are also denying her the control she should have over the world and characters she created. If a writer bought “fan fiction rights,” if there was such a thing, then fine. Then the author has a say on who and what other writers can do. Mind you, fan fiction in general is a-OK with me! I enjoy a lot of it. What’s not OK with me is making money on it.
Diana: Okay, I can’t wait any more. You all must see this interview Joyce and I did in California just a few weeks ago! Joyce was up for the Rita with not one but two books — against Nora Roberts and Cherry Adair (who btw only had one book each) — how’s that for making it big time!
Lena: Ahem. Gee, thanks for cutting me off there Diana. What, my PRINT interview wasn’t good enough for you? Hm?
Diana: Actually your interview was great, Lena!
Lena: (blushes) Oh, okay. Sorry about that snarky comment there. Um, back to our wonderful guest. Actually, I thought it might be fun to show a sneak peek from Joyce’s latest release – FLASH HEAT. Below is an excerpt from chapter one that gives a really fun look at the interaction between the hero and heroine – AND – introduces the villain! Enjoy!
“Would you come on?” he called over his shoulder.
“I’m coming,” she replied, irritated at how breathless she sounded. She was in excellent shape. She played tennis every other day, and it wasn’t just hitting the ball around. It was cutthroat, I’m-serious-about-this-crap tennis. On days when she didn’t play, she rode her bike at least twenty miles, up hills and everything. Her muscles were toned, her body trim. But trailing a good twenty feet behind Cole—who moved fast and silently—made her feel out of shape and clumsy.
Of course, it did give her the opportunity to admire one of his better features. The man might be an ass, but he also had a damn fine one. Add to that long legs, a flat stomach—she was sure that a work of sculpted art lurked beneath the crisp shirts he usually wore—and he was indeed a very well-constructed man.
Dark good looks went with the fantastic body. His short, almost black hair always looked as if he’d just gotten out of bed, but rather than looking messy, it was sexy as all hell. Long thick lashes framed blue eyes the color of the water in the Caribbean—and showed just as many shadows.
He rounded the street corner ahead of her, bypassing the barricades blocking vehicle access to the closed street, and Bailey kicked her pace up to a jog. She imagined him standing next to the senator, both already in hard hats and each tapping a foot while they waited. She was just a few steps from the intersection, glancing into the front window of an indie bookstore she’d always meant to visit, when the strap of her camera bag caught on something.
Off-balanced, Bailey spun, more startled than afraid. But then she saw the man in motorcycle leathers and shiny black helmet. He seized the strap of her bag and dragged her back several feet into an alley that separated the bookstore from a hair salon.
“Hey!” she yelled, struggling against his strength.
He slammed her hard against the peach stucco, and a gloved hand that smelled of cigarettes cut off her next scream.
She could do no more than slap at his jacket and helmet until he trapped her between his body and the unyielding wall and held her immobile. Terror nearly choked her. Oh God oh God oh God …
He tugged at the camera bag, but the way she’d put it over her head made it impossible for him to simply tear it away from her and run.
She clasped the strap to her, instinctively protecting the expensive equipment, but then she heard a snick and saw morning sunlight reflect off a blade. White noise began to roar in her head.
He’s going to kill me.
Diana: Well you have to admit, any way you get Joyce Lamb, on video, in a print interview, in her USA Today blog, or especially in her books True Shot, True Colors, True Vision, Flash Heat and so many others, she is fantastic!
Lena tell them about the prize!
Lena: Joyce has graciously agreed to give away one digital copy of her novel, FLASH HEAT, to one lucky commenter. Joyce would love to answer any questions you have. And she’d like to know what would YOUR dream vacation be?
Lena: Thanks again Joyce! You’ve been a wonderful guest.
Commenters: Don’t forget to stop by Thursday and find out if you are a winner! One lucky commenter wins an ebook copy of FLASH HEAT (via Amazon.com gift certificate) from Joyce Lamb!
Tags: Berkley Sensation, Diana Belchase, free book, Girl Fights, giveaway, Happily Ever After Blog, Happy Ever After Blog, He Kills Me, He Kills Me Not, HEA Blog, Joyce Lamb, Lamb, Lamb Done Two Ways, Lena Diaz, Nora Roberts, prize, Rita Awards, Simon Says Die, True Colors, True Shot, True Vision, USA Today
Posted by Lena Diaz
Thank you everyone who stopped by this week to meet Carey Baldwin and learn about her debut romantic thriller, FIRST DO NO EVIL. The lucky commenter who has won a $25 gift card is Rachel Kall (June 26, 7:30pm post)! Congratulations! Please use the Kiss and Thrill contact page on this website to tell us the email address to send your gift card, and whether you prefer Amazon or Barnes&Noble.
Check back with us on Tuesday for a special Kiss and Thrill blog post!
Posted by Lena Diaz
That’s the first line on the back of Carey Baldwin’s debut medical thriller, FIRST DO NO EVIL. That line gave me chills, and I knew I had to read more. Carey was kind enough to let me read an ARC (advance reader copy) of her novel. The story did not disappoint! The back cover blurb appears below.
One killer is in her blood. The other is in her house.
There’s a killer lurking in Dr. Skylar Novak’s family tree: the gene for breast cancer. That’s why her brilliant brother invented the Bella vaccine. But even if the miracle drug protects her from the cancer that took her mother’s life, it can’t save Sky from the flesh and bone evil stalking her in secret.
When the killer strikes, detective Daniel Benson finds himself in the wrong place at the right time. The bold detective manages to save Sky’s life…just in time for her to return the favor. Survival leads to seduction, and Danny risks everything–his career, even his life, to keep Sky safe. But will the buried sins they uncover cost him her heart?
Danny’s strong arms may hold her close, but only Sky can stop the terror that’s coming next…
Warning: Contents include: One heart-melting hero–good luck getting this delicious detective out of your head. One reluctant heroine–wielding a Glock was never on her to-do list. One crazed villain–an entire flock of baa baa black sheep won’t be enough to put you to sleep. And a lifesaving vaccine with one deadly side effect–murder.
FIRST DO NO EVIL was an absolute joy to read. Why? What makes this story so incredibly, amazingly good? It’s not the plot – although the plot is very good with just the right amount of twists and turns that I like in romantic thrillers. It’s not the characters – although the hero is an awesome blend of sexy alpha AND beta in one delicious package. And the heroine is smart and sassy and independent, the perfect match for the hero. So why did I enjoy this book so much? It’s that special spark, that nearly indefinable star quality, that buzz word editors throw around but is so hard to understand . . . until you see it. What is it? VOICE. What makes FIRST DO NO EVIL so special is Carey Baldwin’s unique voice–her writing style, the way she strings her words together, the very words she uses when building her story.
An interview with Carey Baldwin, www.careybaldwin.com
Lena: Tell us a bit about yourself – where did you grow up? Are there experiences in your past, such as places you’ve visited, that inspire and find their way into your writing?
Carey: I grew up in Ft. Worth, Texas. Lots of great characters in Texas. I was originally going to locate my novella from THREE WEDDINGS AND A MURDER, Solomon’s Wisdom, in an actual small Texas town near Ft. Worth. But then, with all the murder and mayhem, I realized that might not be well received! So I invented Tangleheart, Texas.
I also lived in Flagstaff, Arizona for a number of years and taught at the university. I adored the town and set FIRST DO NO EVIL there.
Lena: What else about you might surprise readers?
Carey: I’m left-handed, and I’m terrified of crickets.
Lena: Oh my gosh! I’m picturing a horror movie now, with swarms of crickets chasing people down main street. 🙂 What was your inspiration for writing FIRST DO NO EVIL? And how did you come up with such an awesome title?
Carey: In medical school we were taught the principle “Primum non nocere”, which translates “First do no harm.” This is medical ethics 101. It’s meant to remind physicians that our treatments have side effects, and we should always be mindful of the potential to unintentionally cause injury. At least that’s my interpretation.
In this case, I twisted the phrase to reflect the fact that it’s possible for human beings to intentionally inflict harm on one another. It would be great if everyone could abide by the principle of non-maleficence, wouldn’t it?
As for the inspiration for FIRST DO NO EVIL, I was thrilled when the HPV vaccination against cervical cancer came out. It’s the only vaccine available that can prevent cancer. It also stirred a lot of controversy and tapped into people’s fears. I wondered which cancer vaccine would come next, and how it might be received.
Lena: I love when real life, even indirectly, inspires an author’s stories. What about the character names in FDNE? Or in any of your stories. How do you come up with character names?
Carey: I do enjoy playing with character names. In the case of Skylar Novak, I had an idea that she would be natural and a lover of nature- so “Sky” seemed to fit her personality. The hero, Danny, was stuck with his “little brother” name from my first manuscript. Danny is the baby brother of my very first hero, Christian Benson. I’ve also named a villain in one of my stories-not saying which one-after a guy who dumped me! I have that in common with Taylor Swift 🙂 .
Lena: 🙂 I’ve always wondered how Taylor ever gets boyfriends when they have to be worried they’ll end up in a song. And I’m so with you on the ‘stuck with a name’ thing. We really have to be careful how we name secondary characters. You never know when they’ll have their own story. Speaking of stories . . . FDNE is a medical thriller and really does have a lot of medical spice sprinkled in, which I loved. Have you always wanted to write medical thrillers?
Carey: I didn’t want to write a typical medical thriller, but once I read THE SURGEON by Tess Gerritsen I had an aha moment. I realized I wanted to write a book like that! A wonderful thriller with strong romance and medical elements coming into play. My next book is only medical in the sense that the heroine is a psychiatrist- and her practice of psychiatric medicine is a key element in the plot.
Lena: You recently got married (Congrats!) and inherited a teenager. Was your new daughter an inspiration for the father/daughter relationship in your debut novel?
Carey: Yikes! No. Troubled Katie was already written before I ever met my bonus daughter! But I totally have a thing for single dads, and that’s part of why I love my new husband. There’s nothing sexier (to me) than a great father.
Lena: Dogs or cats?
Carey: Both. Until recently I had a dog and four cats, all rescue. But last year I lost my fifteen- year-old puppy and one of our cats. So now we are a kitty only family. However, the addition of the teenage daughter keeps me from being lonely!
Lena: Ah, that’s so sweet. Favorite movies?
Carey: Notting Hill, To Kill a Mockingbird, Splendor in the Grass, The Hunger Games, One True Thing, and, drum roll please…The Way We Were.
Lena: I love Notting Hill! And there are some oldie-goldies in that list. Moving on . . . One of the things that impressed me most about FIRST DO NO EVIL is how you portrayed the hero, Danny. Instead of being all tough all the time, he has a deep respect for human life and abhors violences, even though he’s an alpha hero. Did you do any research to help you delve into how a policeman feels about his work? Or did you pull upon your background as a psychologist? In other words – what’s your secret for being so great at characterization????
Carey: Lena, Lena, Lena! That’s a lot of questions disguised as one! But thank you for the compliment!
I did interview a homicide detective several times. I also tried to take a homicide-investigation training seminar, but the instructor didn’t want a writer to be privy to real cases and confidential information. Ironically, I was told that if I stated that I needed the information for use in my medical practice, I would be allowed to attend. But lying to the police didn’t seem like a good plan! So I settled for reading the instructor’s classic homicide text instead. I also ordered and read a number of police training manuals known as training keys. I got them from the International Association of Chiefs of Police, and I highly recommend these real training manuals.
FIRST DO NO EVIL is not a police procedural. With all the medical details, I thought that adding police procedures would be too much. However, since Danny is a cop, I wanted to be sure I had a bead on how a true detective would react in certain scenarios. I was especially interested in the use of force continuum and how police make decisions about using deadly force.
Lena: I am SO going to have to look into those training manuals. Thanks for the tip! Can you share your call story? It can be the call when you got an agent, or the call (or email?) when you made your first sale.
Carey: Ha! Well I was thrilled when my agent called and offered me representation, but she warned me at the time that romantic suspense was not selling. What a wonderful, and rare, agent to take me on at a time like that. Thank you, Nalini Akolekar!
When Nalini called to tell me Lindsey Faber loved my book and wanted to aquire it for Samhain, I was over the moon. I remember asking Nalini over and over on the phone…”Is Lindsey going to be my editor? Lindsey herself?” Thank you, Lindsey Faber!
Lena: You are definitely in great hands with the awesome Nalini Akolekar (Spencerhill Associates, Ltd.) as your agent. Not that I’m biased of course. (wink – Nalini is my agent too.) Now on to a really serious question. Mac or PC?
Lena: Me too! And it has nothing to do with that gorgeous Mac guy on the Mac vs. PC commercials. Really. Ahem. So what do you do for fun?
Carey: I hike, and I chase wildflowers. I used to love to run, but now I am focused on walking. Got that big 40 Mile Avon Breast Cancer walk coming in about 90 days!
Lena: (Do the wildflowers run from you??? 🙂 ) That’s awesome about the Avon Breast Cancer walk. I hope you raise tons of money for that great cause. Can you share your writing process? Do you write every day? Only on weekends? Do you have set word count or page count goals?
Carey: Not a word count girl. I write until I wear out. I write in the middle of the night and on weekends. I would love to have time to write during banker’s hours. Maybe someday…
Lena: What genres do you like to read and who are some of your favorite authors?
Carey: I read broadly, across romance genres and outside of romance as well.
It goes without saying that my fellow Kiss and Thrill authors, and my co-authors of THREE WEDDINGS AND A MURDER are not only among my favorite authors, they are close to my heart.
Other favorites would certainly include Cindy Gerard, Harlan Coben, Dean Koontz, Julia Quinn, Tess Gerritsen, Stephen King, Eloisa James, Truman Capote, Harper Lee, Somerset Maughn, Allison Brennan, Brenda Novak, Karen Rose, Carla Neggers, Lisa Kleypas, Anne Tyler – see what I mean, the list is getting too long.
Lena: Wow. And I thought I had a long list. All great authors though. We read a lot of the same ones. Now for a burning question. Star Wars or Star Trek?
Carey: Star Trek. I love the pseudoscience!
Lena: Yes (fist pump). I love Star Trek. What’s your favorite television show?
Carey: I gotta go with “Survivor”. My under-the-bed first manuscript is about old flames who re-encounter one another on the show “Stranded”, based of course on my aforementioned beloved reality show.
Lena: Sounds cool! What future projects are you working on?
Carey: DUTY TO WARN, the second book in the Blood Secrets series. I’m one of those who doesn’t like to spill the premise (I always think I’m so high concept 🙂 ) too far away from completion, but I will tell you it takes place in New Mexico and features “Aunt Faith” from FIRST DO NO EVIL. She’s a psychiatrist and one of her patients turns out to be a serial killer. Of course there’s a fantastic twist!
Lena: White, milk, or dark chocolate?
Carey: Milk chocolate.
Lena: Beer or champagne?
Carey: Champagne. Can I have it with milk chocolate?
Lena: Okay, but only if I get some too! Now for the most fun part of the interview – the infamous free association test. Come on, you know I had to do this. Please say the first word that comes to your mind!
Big: (Carey’s answer was bleeped out to keep the post family friendly 🙂 )
Lena: Okay…I know I’m nowhere near as talented as Carey with the psychological conclusions, but here I go.
Carey is one hot tamale who secretly wishes she was wearing fishnet stockings while slow dancing to some country music with her handsome hubby Bill after enjoying a romantic, blissful interlude at a hotel where they shared a Waldorf Salad with cotton candy and sweet tarts for dessert!
Carey, thank you so much for being with us today and for putting up with all those questions! Now let’s open things up for questions and comments from our readers. Tell us what you love the most about romantic thrillers!
Commenters: Stop by Thursday and find out if you are a winner! One lucky commenter will win a $25 gift card to either Amazon or Barnes and Noble (winner’s choice).
Posted by Carey Baldwin
Hang on! There’s an interview with the New York Times best-selling author of more than 60 novels, Carla Neggers, and a chance to win autographed print books, e-books, and a t-shirt!
But first I want to talk about those books.
SAINT’S GATE is a complex suspense involving a murdered nun and a missing painting that holds the key not only to a series of current day thefts and homicides but to past mysteries as well. In this book, Carla lives up to her reputation for delivering atmospheric romance by transporting the reader to small-town Maine, as well as Dublin, Ireland. If you are a lover of rich, lush detail and multi-level storylines, I think you will truly enjoy this.
The romance between the main characters, Colin Donovan and Emma Sharpe, is strong enough to bear up in the midst of a big plot. I feel not only the sexual sparks, but the deep emotional connection resonating between Colin and Emma.
A cast of fascinating secondary characters, in particular, an Irish priest with quite a story of his own, rounds out the book.
The story is complex and satisfying, and all the threads are tied tightly into a satisfying knot. But I was left wondering- Carla, what the heck is a bean-hole dinner?
SECRETS OF THE LOST SUMMER. I can only reiterate that Carla Neggers is a master of atmospheric romance. This contemporary love story will transport you to Knight’s Bridge Mass. where Oliva Frost is renovating a historic home. Enter the owner of the dilapidated neighboring home, Dylan McCaffrey, and the journey to discovering secrets of the past begins. Another strong cast, a satisfying mystery, and of course a love story, spells another win for Carla Neggers.
An interview with Carla Neggers, www.CarlaNeggers.com
Carey: If you were stranded on a desert island with one other author, yes the real author, not a book, who would it be and why?
Carla: I have so many writer friends! I’d pick one of them. Preferably all of them. I have lots of authors from the past that I’d like to meet, but too risky on a desert island if they turn out to be…well, not someone you’d want to be stranded on a desert island with.
Carey: LOL. Sounds like there’s going to be a full-out party on your island. What is your favorite book?
Carla: I don’t have one favorite book but I often turn to Mary Stewart and Rex Stout for a “comfort” read. I remember discovering a musty copy of The Moonspinners in our town library. Loved it. And Nero Wolfe…I especially love his early cases and the depictions of New York in the 1930s, 1940s and 1950s.
Carey: Nero Wolfe is one of my favorite detectives too, but I haven’t read any of the books in a long while. I’ll have to revisit one soon. Do you have a favorite song?
Carla: No one favorite song, either. It depends on my mood. Right now I’m into Irish music. I love the traditional musicians like the Chieftains, but I also enjoy the Young Dubliners, especially their album All Due Respect, and Dropkick Murphys—nothing like The Meanest of Times for a jolt of energy!
Carey: How did you come to write your first manuscript?
Carla: In a tree! I was a kid. I grew up in the country with six brothers and sisters, and I’d go off on my own and climb a tree with a pad and pen and write. I had several manuscripts by the time I graduated high school…all still safely out of public view! I continued to write fiction through college and finally submitted a manuscript to an agent shortly after my first child was born. The agent took me on, and I eventually sold that book.
Carey: I love that story, and I am amazed that you had several manuscripts completed before finishing high school. A sign of a born writer. Do you have a personal hero?
Carla: My husband is one of the finest men I’ve ever known.
Carey tries to refrain, but then gives in to saying, “Awww!”
Carey: Which of your series or which of your books is your favorite?
Carla: I’m afraid I’m not any good at these “favorite” questions! To me, each book and each series stands on its own, and I’m always excited about the book I’m writing.
Carey: Which of your books would you suggest for a reader if they could only read one?
Carla: Whichever one appealed to him or her! I’d read the first few pages and go from there.
Carey, sheepishly: Do you have a favorite among your female protagonists and why?
Carla: Again, I don’t think in terms of “favorites.” I’m enjoying writing about Emma Sharpe, an art crimes expert with the FBI who happens to be a former novice from an isolated Maine convent. Emma’s full of surprises! We meet her in SAINT’S GATE, out now, and then again in HERON’S COVE, due out in late August. Order SAINT’S GATE here.
Carey: You write so convincingly about the art world in Saint’s Gate. Do you have a background in art?
Carla:I don’t have a formal background in art but it’s long been an area of interest and study for me. I studied music at Boston University’s College of Fine Arts and roomed with artists who became lifelong friends. And my son’s a graphic designer!
Carey asks, and then ducks for cover: Do you have a favorite among your male protagonists and why?
Carla: That “favorite” word again! Colin Donovan, a deep-cover FBI agent, is every bit Emma’s match in SAINT’S GATE and now HERON’S COVE…and he has three hard-headed brothers.
Carey: I noticed all those brothers! I hope that means a long series of Donovan books. I know Saint’s Gate is the first in a new series for you, can you tell us some secrets about what’s in store for Colin Donovan?
Carla: Colin Donovan and Emma Sharpe return in HERON’S COVE (September 2012), when his world as an undercover agent and her world as a Sharpe—a family of art crime experts—collide.
Carey: Please tell us about your upcoming release, Secrets of the Lost Summer.
Carla: SECRETS OF THE LOST SUMMER marks my return to contemporary romance…but, of course, there’s a puzzle to be solved. Olivia Frost gives up a career in Boston to return to her little hometown to turn a historic house into a getaway. Just up the road is an abandoned house with junk in the yard. A real eyesore. She tracks down the absentee owner to clean up the place…but Dylan McCaffrey has never heard of Olivia or the town, or even knows he owns a house there. Turns out his treasure-hunter father left it to him. But why? Dylan heads to New England, and the fun goes on from there. Lots going on in this story!
Carey: What motivated you to go back to your roots in contemporary romance for your latest release, Secrets of the Lost Summer?
Carla: Simply put, the idea. I was gripped by it. I often write about small towns, secrets, adventures…SECRETS OF THE LOST SUMMER has all that…and a jewel thief! I’ve appreciated how readers have embraced the story. Order SECRETS here.
Carey: Is there a story you are itching to write, but haven’t done so? Do you foresee yourself ever writing that story and under what circumstance?
Carla: SECRETS OF THE LOST SUMMER was a story like that. It was a bit different, and I was itching to write it…and I did! Now it’s turned into a series, and I’m writing the next book, THAT NIGHT ON THISTLE LANE.
Carey: Your novels are noted for their strong atmospheric elements. What draws you to a particular setting, and how do you make that setting come alive for readers?
Carla: For me, the setting is almost like another character, and I enjoy bringing it to life for the reader. SECRETS OF THE LOST SUMMER is set in a fictional town near where I grew up on the western edge of the vast, beautiful Quabbin Reservoir (which plays a key role in the ‘secrets’!). SAINT’S GATE and HERON’S COVE take place in Maine, Boston and Ireland…three of my favorite places. I’m going back to Ireland soon to research DECLAN’S CROSS, the third in my Sharpe & Donovan series.
Carey: I love this You Tube where you talk more about SECRETS and the setting that inspired you. Readers will be interested to know that you took most of the photos used in this video.
Carey: And finally, Carla, I’d like to ask if you have a special cause that is close to your heart?
Carla: I’ve been doing what I can to help people here in Vermont to rebuild after the catastrophic flash floods that struck our mountainous state in late August. Two of the little covered bridges at the bottom of our hill were casualties, but the detours are minor inconveniences compared to the jobs and homes lost. There’s progress every day, and Vermont is definitely open for business. Come visit!
Carey: Carla, thank you so much for being with us today and for putting up with all those favorites questions! Now let’s open things up for questions and comments.
Commenters: Don’t forget to stop by Thursday and find out if you are a winner! One lucky commenter wins an autographed copy of SECRETS OF THE LOST SUMMER, SAINT’S GATE and a t-shirt from the lovely Carla Neggers! A second commenter wins an e-copy of SECRETS OF THE LOST SUMMER and SAINT’S GATE!
Tags: Carey Baldwin, Carla Neggers, contest, free book, giveaway, guest blogger, guest interview, NY Times Bestseller, prize, Romantic Suspense, romantic suspense novels, Saint's Gate, Secrets of the Lost Summer, Suspense
Posted by Carey Baldwin
Thank you so much to our very own MANDA COLLINS! We are so proud and excited for your new release:
If you haven’t ordered it yet, what are you waiting for? Here’s the link!
Next Tuesday we are thrilled to host Tara Janzen, New York Times bestselling author and creator of the acclaimed Steele Street series of romantic suspense novels about a hotshot crew of former juvenile delinquents and car thieves in Denver, Colorado who grow up to become one of the U.S.A.’s most elite black ops forces. Tara is giving away an e-copy or print copy of the Steele Street thriller of your choice to one lucky commenter
Now it’s time to announce the WINNER! Remember you must contact us within 10 days at Contact@KissandThrill.com to claim your prize. Please send your email address where you wish to have your e-book gift notice delivered, and let me know if you prefer your e-book for Kindle or Nook.
The winner of an e-book HOW TO DANCE WITH A DUKE (to be delivered as soon as it is released)…and…a $10 Amazon Gift card is: Tina B