RSS

Tag Archives: Author Interview

Author Chat with Linda Yezak

jess-and-me-2012-bayou-writers-group-conference

Linda Yezak with fellow author Jessica Ferguson

Today we’re featuring one of our favorite authors, Linda Yezak. She’s one of four authors in a collection titled The Bucket List Dare.

QPQ – Congratulations on the new release! I love the premise of this collection. It’s about four college friends who decide to check something off their buckets lists before they turn thirty. How did this come about?

LY –  Actually it was Jessica Ferguson’s idea, which is a bit of a surprise, since she didn’t go to Texas A&M. She called me when Billy and I were driving home from our annual trip to the Hill Country, and the excitement over her story idea made an eight hour drive seem like three.

QPQ – I absolutely love your characters – in all your books – but JoJo may be my most favorite yet. You write such fun dialogue, but it’s the inner dialogue of JoJo that had me laughing out loud. How much of the real Linda Yezak are we seeing in JoJo?

LY – Other than the snark, absolutely none. I want to jump from a plane so bad, I can feel it.

QPQ – As much as we may love the heroine, let’s face it, we read romance for the hero. Was Mitch modeled after anyone special in your life?

LY – Hate to disappoint, but no. Mitch just developed as I went along. I wish I could’ve deepened his character a bit more—shown some of those “warts” Jojo wondered about—but I started running out of wordcount.

QPQ – Oh, I know that feeling! It’s the price we pay for writing in a collection. And now the pivotal question for readers everywhere. *insert drum roll* Have you ever jumped out of an airplane?

LY – I had the opportunity once, and if Billy hadn’t been there when I was asked, I would have. Maybe Jojo is modeled on him . . . Nah. He loves to fly too much.

QPQ – Is this on your personal bucket list?

LY – Actually, yes. I have a niece who has promised to do some of the crazy things I’d love to do with me, but she also wants to go down in a shark cage. I drew the line.

QPQ – Smart woman! What’s next in the hopper from Linda Yezak?

LY – I have another novella coming out with some friends—The Tiny House Collection, in which all the characters live in/buy a tiny house. Mine, titled Kayla’s Challenge, is the prequel for my new series, tentatively called Southern Challenge, the first of which I intend to finish next year. Next for this year and in to next is Book Three of the Circle Bar Ranch series, Ride to the Altar. And if I don’t get started on that one soon, I’m gonna miss my deadline!

bookQPQ – Give us some links where readers can reach you … and then get back to work!

Facebook Fan Page: https://www.facebook.com/GivetheLadyaRide

Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/lyezak/

Twitter: @LindaYezak

Goodreads: http://dld.bz/dSPmg

777 Peppermint Place: http://lindayezak.com

Newsletter: http://dld.bz/CoffeewithLinda

Amazon: http://dld.bz/LindaWYezakAmazon

 

 
4 Comments

Posted by on November 14, 2016 in Author Chat, New Releases

 

Tags: , , , , , , ,

Out of The Frying Pan: Behind the Story

The September 9th and 23rd posts showcased the romance/mystery novel, Out of the Frying Pan by authors Michelle Griep and Kelly Klepfer. Today we learn how the story materialized!61tvSrINcpL

Kelly, welcome back! Tell us how you and Michelle came to write Out of the Frying Pan.

Michelle and I met a very long time ago. In fact we say we are sisters from another mother but didn’t meet until we began interacting on an on-line Christian fiction critique group. We knew right away that we were soul sisters. We both consider our major spiritual gifts to be sarcasm and smacking. I know that’s not Biblical, but let’s just say we employ both of these skills often so it’s good that we have each other.  

While slicing-and-dicing each other’s writing, one of us suggested we write a book together. I had a story idea birthed long before. One of my former co-workers (The woman had a Bachelor’s Degree in theater. Nuff said.) used to run a non-profit alongside mine. She worked with retired adults. We enjoyed her interactions way too much. One day she ran across a name. “Kelly! This name needs to be a character in a book. A murder mystery. Zula. Isn’t that a wonderful name?” I agreed. And when I shared this tiny seed of an idea with Michelle the brainstorming blossomed into Out of the Frying Pan and the larger than life Fern and Zula Hopkins.

photo (11)Of course, that was the beginning. And this novel has taken a 10 year journey to see the light of day.

The plot line was skeletonized super speedy. We knew our murderer, our red herring coulda-woulda folks, the motives and the major characters right off the bat.

We wrote Out of the Frying Pan from different states, bouncing ideas off of each other and putting each other in challenging literary hot water. I wrote two major characters, Michelle wrote the other two. We’d write a scene, tag the other person and wait for a response with the scene cliffhanger. It was really challenging and fun. Michelle would work her magic and write about her character’s world, weaving my character in and causing me to have to rethink what I thought she’d be doing next–and vice versa. It really stretched us as writers and our characters grew more three-dimensional because of it. As Michelle wrote about my characters, they grew even more loveable because someone I cared about was describing them to me.

We had two publishers early on interested in the book but the cozy mystery portion of their house shut down before anything materialized there. Then we sat on the book for a long period. Michelle wrote and published a couple of books in that time frame. I sunk into a season of insecurity in my skill set and was not writing at all. Michelle finally told me that we needed to start pushing the story again. I agreed to massive editing and finishing the final chapters. Interestingly, while I wasn’t writing, I was reading and reviewing during my dry spell. During that time, some of the areas in which I struggled became more natural and part of who I was as a writer. That season was valuable because I grew into my training and stored knowledge.

So if you happen to be a discouraged writer and aren’t able to write right now, read. qtRead good books and think about what makes them good and why you love them. And read not-so-good books and decide what makes them a bit on the stinky side and how you might do something different as a writer. You might just discover the rules begin to gel and become part of you, too. I’d been trying so hard not to break the rules that I was stilted and stunted in my writing, until the rules worked their way into me. And this has spiritual application. How many walk and struggle to obey God’s rules in their own weak power? Instead, Jesus offers us His indwelling. He works to make the rules a natural part of us.

Michelle had an agent at the time. We finished the book and she shopped it for us. We had a couple of bites but nothing real tempting. She ended up parting ways with her agent and a year later we landed this contract. When our Bling! Editor read it she suggested we ramp up the romance angle and sell it as a romance. So, newly challenged, we recreated deeper pasts for our former secondary characters and wove in more action. The whole process has been so challenging, involved, and exhausting, but most of all, fun.

Over all, my favorite comments and delightful moments are recent. Michelle is a genius editor and will not let a book go to a final print without her last go-through. She texted me throughout that weekend. “I am laughing out loud. How can I think this book is so funny when we stinking wrote it?” “I love our characters. I mean love them.” “Favorite paragraph: Oy. The heat from Zula’s blistering gaze began to melt Fern’s rubber-soled Keds. She didn’t even need to look in that direction to know that two baby blue beams were fixed, locked, and loaded. How was she going to get out of this situation without any open veins? A story. A good story.This says it all. Some of Michelle’s admiration might come from the fact that people die and are injured in Out of the Frying Pan. Because she loves nitty-gritty historicals, she’s always killing off a character or two, so there’s that. Remember our “spiritual” gifts. ♦

unnamedKelly Klepfer had ambitions to graduate from the school of life quite awhile ago, but alas… she still attends and is tested regularly. Her co-authored cozy/quirky mystery, Out of the Frying Pan, is the culmination of several of the failed/passed tests. Kelly, though she lives with her husband, two Beagles and two hedgehogs in Iowa, can be found at Novel Rocket, Novel Reviews, Scrambled Dregs, Instagram, Pinterest, Facebook and Twitter with flashes of brilliance (usually quotes), randomocities, and learned life lessons.

 

 

View More: http://bethanyaleshire.pass.us/michellekelly

Michelle Griep’s been writing since she first discovered blank wall space and Crayolas. She resides in the frozen tundra of Minnesota, where she teaches history and writing classes for a local high school co-op. Historical romance is her usual haunt. THE CAPTIVE HEART is her latest release. Follow her escapades at www.michellegriep.com or www.writerofftheleash.blogspot.com or stalk her on Facebook, Twitter, or Pinterest.

 

~ Jericha Kingston

 

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Animals & Authors with Michelle Griep

Writing – they say – is a solitary occupation. But is it really? Let’s visit with author Michelle Griep and ask her about her constant companion.

QPQ: Welcome, Michelle! Introduce us to the fuzzy-muzzle of love you’re sharing with us today.

Ada & IMG: I live with a slightly-neurotic . . . wait a minute . . . scratch that. I live with a super-psychotic boxer named Ada Clare. After meeting her mother and father (okay, so, yeah, I’m the psycho here) my husband and I decided to adopt a pup from their litter. We chose the black one. Really she’s brindle, but you can only see brown if the sun shines on her just right. That was 2 ½ years ago and we’ve been loving her ever since.

QPQ: Boxers are such amazing dogs! Since you’re an author and you come up with names all the time, how did you come up with Ada Clare?

MG:I’m a Dickens freak and Bleak House is one of my favorites of his. Ada Clare is a sweet but strong character in that story.

IMG_8963QPQ: I wondered if Bleak House was the inspiration for your Ada Clare! How does Ada help you in your writing?

MG: Being that I live in the frozen tundra of Minnesota, she keeps my feet warm. Or if she lays on them too long, they go numb.

QPQ: Oh my. Can’t relate to that kind of cold! Have you ever written one of your pets into a story?

MG: Not one of mine but one of my mom’s. She seriously had the world’s ugliest dog. In my new release written with co-author Kelly Klepfer, we wrote in a pup that only a mother could love.

IMG_8990QPQ: Let me guess… that would be Fifi The Wonder Dog! Tell us three things you and Ada have in common.

MG: One, we love treats and snoozing. Two, taking walks is one of our favorite things to do. Three, chin whiskers. Oops. Did I say that out loud?

QPQ: Too funny, Michelle! Thank you for visiting here at the Quid Pro Quills. Where can readers find your new release?

MG: For zany fun with the world’s ugliest dog, check out my co-authored release of OUT OF THE FRYING PAN.

Murder in Paradise whips life into a froth for Fern and Zula Hopkins. When the retirement center’s chef is found dead, the two ladies get folded in with the case. Their zany attempts to track down the killer land them in hot water with Detective Jared Flynn. Should he be concerned about their safety—or the criminal’s?

But there are deadly ingredients none of them expect. Drugs. Extortion. International cartels. And worst of all…broken hearts, especially when the Hopkins sisters’ niece KC arrives on the scene.

Life at Sunset Paradise Retirement Village will never be the same.

61tvSrINcpL

View More: http://bethanyaleshire.pass.us/michellekellyMichelle Griep’s been writing since she first discovered blank wall space and Crayolas. She resides in the frozen tundra of Minnesota, where she teaches history and writing classes for a local high school co-op. Historical romance is her usual haunt, THE CAPTIVE HEART her latest release. Follow her escapades at www.michellegriep.com or www.writerofftheleash.blogspot.com or stalk her on Facebook, Twitter, or Pinterest.

 

~ Jericha Kingston

 

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Animals & Authors with Kelly Klepfer

Writing – they say – is a solitary occupation. But is it really? Let’s visit with author Kelly Klepfer and ask her about her constant companions.

QPQ: Welcome, Kelly! Introduce us to the Beagles you’re sharing with us today.

IMG_20160219_071503373 (1)KK: Sweet mercy. You are giving me carte blanche to blab about my babies. Gertrude and Gladys are sweet (most of the time) little sisters we’ve had almost two years. Their mama died just hours after they were born from a urinary tract infection that went to her bloodstream. The babies all had to have antibiotics, too. A friend of a friend does wildlife rescue and since this was so sudden, the babies went to her for bottle feeding. At five weeks of age my friend (who has offered us pets for years including squirrels and raccoons) did her usual shout out. “Kelly, you want a sweet little Beagle pup?”

I said, “No, Rob wouldn’t want a Beagle.” (Rob is the husband, should you wonder.) But I didn’t know that he secretly did want a Beagle. His boss has one and Rob just can’t stop talking about it. So he said yes. When I told my friend she nearly wet her pants. (She’s of a certain age where one must be careful when jumping up and down.)

IMG_20150828_131128177 (1)Then the gal sent a picture of our new baby. And there was another one in the picture and she referred to them as they. Rob said, “You know, if we’re potty training one, might as well get two.” And I said, “Yes!” Someone else had spoken for the other in the meantime. I actually prayed we could get both of them.  Yes. I did. The other person backed out because she was excited that the little sisters could stay together.

Can I just say I adore my girls? They are so ridiculously cute. Their personalities are night and day different, of course. I’m so glad we said yes. And they are pretty spoiled.

QPQ: Aww! They sound like sweethearts! Since authors come up with names all the time, how did you come up with Gladys and Gertrude?

KK: My daughter has two sister dogs as well. Lilly and Lola. They came to live with her while she still lived at home with us. I fell in love with them and when they all moved out into their own place it got really quiet in our house. Lilly and Lola are much larger than my girls. They are boxer/lab mixes. I liked the alliteration of their names and I wanted a pair of names that made me smile. I considered flower names which was pretty cute. I kept going back to the older lady names though. We ran the name choices past a few friends. When it came down to it the alliteration won. The names fit them perfectly.

1458259479172QPQ: You chose well! How do Gladys and Gertrude help you write?

KK: Very little. Seriously. Gladys loves to hop on my lap when I’m writing. She’s a solid 38 pounds and loves to wrap her arms around my neck and cuddle. There is very little writing that gets done when she’s in one of her snuggle moods. Gert cuddles up next to me if I’m on the couch, but she does this little dog-in-the-manger growl when her sister gets near. So I’m always a little leery of the forthcoming wrestling match. (True story, one leapt over my computer which was on my lap one day and snapped my period key right off the computer.)

61tvSrINcpLQPQ: Oh no! Of all the keys to lose…. Have you ever written one of your pets into a story?

KK:  Out of the Frying Pan has a doggy character. Fifi, the Wonder Dog. I must tell you, Fifi’s title is full of sarcasm. See, Zula and Fern inherited Fifi when one of the residents moved on, and well… Fifi has some issues. However, Fifi, not based on my pups, is adorbs in her own way.

QPQ: Oh my. We’ll have to learn more about Fifi! Thank you so much for visiting today, Kelly. Final question: What are three things you and Gladys and Gertrude have in common?

KK: One, quirk. Gladys is a quirky gal. Two, Gertrude is pretty focused. Not that I am, but I’m stubborn and that’s kind of a focus. Three, both of them are pretty treat-motivated. Nuff said.  

unnamedKelly Klepfer had ambitions to graduate from the school of life quite awhile ago, but alas . . . she still attends and is tested regularly. Her new, co-authored cozy/quirky mystery, Out of the Frying Pan, is the culmination of several of the failed/passed tests. Kelly lives with her husband and two Beagles in Iowa, and can also be found at Novel RocketNovel ReviewsScrambled DregsInstagram, Pinterest,
Facebook and Twitter with flashes of brilliance (usually quotes), randomocities, and learned life lessons.

~ Jericha Kingston

 

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Freeing Ellie: Author Chat with Joan Deneve

View More: http://photos.pass.us/joan-deneveQPQ: Today’s a great day to visit the Quid Pro Quills. We’re thrilled to bring you another interview with Author Joan Deneve. Thank you for joining us, Joan! Tell us what’s new since Saving Eric.

JD: Hello, Jericha. Great to be with you again! Eric and Ellie’s story continues in my new novel Freeing Ellie.

QPQ: Eric and Ellie… together at last! What are some of the challenges they face in Freeing Ellie?

JD: You’re right about challenges. Life seems to be full of them, doesn’t it?

One of Ellie’s greatest fears comes to pass: Eric has to return to his former professional skills in an attempt to rescue someone dear to them both.

Most importantly, though, Ellie has to deal with some baggage from her past: Guilt over past mistakes; depression; doubts about God’s love and forgiveness. These things rear their ugly heads as she and Eric deal with tragedy, as well as complications from a crisis pregnancy.

QPQ: Oh my. Can’t wait to read how they address these challenges. What’s Ellie’s most endearing quality?

JD:  Ellie is sweet, even when she is having a hard time. This quality is endearing but not always helpful. In an attempt not to be a bother to anyone, she bottles up her pain and tries to handle it all on her own.

QPQ: I think a lot of women can relate. Tell us how your book, Freeing Ellie, came to be.

Freeing Ellie FRONT COVERJD: I love books that end with Happily Ever After, but I always want to know what happens to a couple after the wedding when real life hits them square in the face. I love Eric and Ellie, and I wanted to take their journey farther and deeper. Since they were both new Christians when they married, I wanted to show their growth as believers and also the strengthening of their own relationship as husband and wife.

QPQ: Anyone who’s read about Eric and Ellie will definitely want to know more. What resources did you utilize to gather information for Freeing Ellie?

JD: My own life experiences! I was not reared in a Christian home. In fact, my childhood was often violent and troubled due to having a mentally ill father. I was gloriously saved two weeks before my sixteenth birthday! I entered this wonderful faith with a lot of baggage from my childhood. God graciously created the perfect storm of challenges and trials aimed specifically at my fears and doubts to bring me to the place where I could fully trust Him.

Although Ellie’s struggles were different from my own, I think the concept is the same for every believer. God knows the deep secrets and fears in our hearts. He often allows us to go through tribulations (which are trials we can’t handle on our own) in an effort to free us once and for all from the things that have bound us spiritually or emotionally.

I love the line from the novel: Retreat to the truth, not your feelings.

Our thoughts and feelings are often colored by lies we inadvertently tell ourselves such as, God doesn’t care; I’ll never change; Not even God can fix this mess…. We must learn to counter the lies we believe with the truth of His word. God’s truth will make you free. John 8:32.

QPQ: Yes! God’s truth is the only truth in a world of lies. What about Eric and Ellie will appeal to readers?

JD: Their cute, sweet banter! They’re still newlyweds in this novel! They are also still relatively new Christians. I think the reader will enjoy and benefit from witnessing their growing pains in their new faith.

QPQ: Can’t wait to read it. Your dialogue is amazing! What is the single most important lesson you’ve learned about writing, or life in general?

JD: Wow! I had to really think about the answer to this question because there were many lessons along the way. But I think if I had to narrow it down to the single most important lesson in regards to writing and life in general, it would be this:

Even though my life’s calling is to be a teacher, I found I REALLY enjoyed writing. At fifty-seven, when I began this glorious writing journey, I felt that I had walked through the wardrobe door and entered a whole new world that I loved very much. Five years later, I’ve learned some things about this ‘writing Narnia’ that I could not have known when I began.

  1. Writing is a gift but it’s also a craft that must be learned, often through painstaking, patient, and humbling trial and error.
  2. Getting a book published does not bring a lasting or euphoric high that one thinks it will bring. (Nor will it bring fame or wealth.)
  3. Most importantly, I’ve learned that God wants to use my gift of writing in His time and in His way. Once I learned that lesson, the pressure was off to compete with other authors, or to complete yet another epic book. God’s will, God’s way, God’s timing. It took me a while to learn that one, and I think I’m still learning. Actually it was this year that I realized God wants to use my writing whether in a work of fiction, a Facebook post, or even the occasional blog. It doesn’t have to be an award-winning book.

Sorry. I gave you three, but I saved the most important lesson for the last.

QPQ: I’m so glad you did. Do you have any words of wisdom for aspiring authors?

JD: Me? Not really. But I can tell aspiring authors what I tell myself.

Don’t let self-doubt rob you of the blessing of pursuing your dream of writing a book and getting it published. God wants to use you to help and bless (or maybe just entertain) the people with whom you share this planet.

Don’t look at the Goliaths of other great authors or great and seemingly impregnable publishing houses. As young David said, “Is there not a cause?” Yes! If God has put this desire in your heart, God wants to use you. Trust God and do it!

QPQ: Fabulous advice, Joan. Tell us something we might be surprised to learn about you.

JD: Like Ellie, I once tried to commit suicide. God wasn’t through with me. It’s one of the reasons I’m so passionate about this book. God is in the business of changing lives! He changed mine! My prayer is that God uses this book to help someone who is struggling with guilt or depression. There is deliverance!

QPQ: Thank you so much for your transparency, and most importantly, for sharing the sure hope found in Christ Jesus. What’s next for you? Are you writing anything new?

JD: I could use your prayers! Teaching high school English is rewarding but very time-consuming! I also am the primary caregiver for my ninety-six year old mother, another very rewarding but time-consuming challenge. But yes! I am currently working on Loving Brock, the third and final book in the Redeemed Side of Broken Series.

QPQ: Oh goodness! There’s more to come? I can’t wait! Thank you so much for joining us. How might readers contact you?

JD: I love to hear from readers! Here are some ways to connect with me:

cjdeneve@hotmail.comFacebook: Joannie Denevejoandeneve.com

QPQ: Finally, where can we find Freeing Ellie?

JD: Freeing Ellie can be found on Amazon. ♦

~ Jericha Kingston

View More: http://photos.pass.us/joan-deneveJoan Deneve teaches English in a Christian school and has a passion to help young people fall in love with Jesus and equip them to become all God wants them to be. Joan began her walk as a Christian when she accepted Christ as her savior two weeks before her sixteenth birthday. She graduated from Tennessee Temple Bible College in 1975.

Joan and Rene’, her husband of forty-plus years, reside in Prattville, Alabama, a charming city with Southern hospitality. They count their son, daughter, son-in-law, and seven phenomenal grandchildren to be their greatest blessings on earth.

Joan enjoys time well-spent with family and friends, but finds equal joy in quiet moments of solitude on her back porch. There, surrounded by bluebirds and yellow butterflies, she began writing her debut novel, Saving Eric.

An active member of her church, Joan enjoys singing in the choir. She is a member of American Christian Fiction Writers and is currently working on the third book in the Redeemed Side of Broken Series. She enjoys chatting with fellow writers and readers. Contact her at http://www.joandeneve.com

 

 

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Author Chat with Susan Anne Mason

 

Susan and booksWe welcome author Susan Anne Mason to the Quid Pro Quills. Susan writes historical novels including Irish Meadows and A Worthy Heart. They are the first two books in her Courage to Dream series. I recently reviewed A Worthy Heart.

QPQ: Having a bit o’ Irish blood meself, I’m enjoying this series immensely. What prompted you to center on the Irish in New York at the beginning of the 20th century?

SM: I always wanted to write a family saga because I enjoy reading them so much, and as I was researching my own family’s history. I discovered that my father’s side of the family came from Ireland and settled in Brooklyn around the turn of the century. So that became the seed that grew. My ancestors, like many immigrants, weren’t well off when they arrived. I wanted to portray the patriarch of my story, James Leary, as having clawed his way up from poverty to achieve a good measure of success. Because it’s always more fun to read about the rich, isn’t it?

QPQ: Adam O’Leary … wow. What a difference a book can make! How did you recreate Irish Meadow’s bad boy into A Worthy Heart’s hero?

SM: This was indeed a challenge! To be honest, at first I didn’t like Adam O’Leary much! That’s why I moved him ‘offstage’ in Irish Meadows. I didn’t know much about him, only that he would end up in prison. But the more I delved into Adam’s character, the more I understood what drove him, and I began to see his potential as a hero! (I can’t give away Adam’s secrets. You’ll have to read to find out!) But it was certainly fun reforming him, and helping him heal from his childhood wounds — with a little help from Maggie Montgomery!

QPQ: Maggie Montgomery is an instantly likeable heroine who has no intention of returning to Ireland. Historically, how common was this for Irish relatives visiting their American relations?

SM: To be honest, I have no idea. I know that during the Irish Potato Famine, a huge influx of Irish immigrants came over to Canada and the United States, which I’m sure resulted in a lot of their families coming to join them. In my own family, my uncle married a sweet Irish girl who came to Canada for a visit and when the two fell in love, she quickly moved to Canada. Her sister and her widowed mother also came over from Ireland and all of them eventually ended up living in California (with another rather large Irish population!)

QPQ: I mentioned in my book review of Irish Meadows that you didn’t bury the Catholic roots of these characters. We see that too often in historicals dealing with the Irish, and I don’t understand that since it was such an intricate part of who they were. Yes, the Christian in-fighting in Ireland was horrible, but it happened. Was there any push-back from your publisher regarding that?

SM: Interesting question because when I was first shopping Irish Meadows to potential agents and publishers, I received a lot of negative feedback about the fact that the characters were Catholic. I believe one person said that a story with a priest would never get published. Thankfully Dave Long at Bethany House didn’t hold that opinion. I only got one mild suggestion to make sure that anything “Catholic” in the book was accurate because if we got it wrong, the readers would surely let us know!!

QPQ: Aurora Hastings, she’s the quintessential “poor little rich girl” isn’t she? You’re dragging that dear young woman through the emotional mud in the first two books. Dare we hope she’ll reach a happily-ever-after at some point? Soon?

SM: The lovely Aurora reached her happily ever after at the end of A Worthy Heart. I’m afraid you’ll have to imagine the rest, because we don’t see her again in the next book. The third and final book in the series is called Love’s Faithful Promise, which mostly centers on the youngest O’Leary, Deirdre and her tug-of-war with the handsome Canadian doctor, Matthew Clayborne, as they work together to help Mrs. O’Leary overcome a health crisis. In this book, which takes place for the most part back at Irish Meadows, we see Gil and Brianna and their children, as well as some appearances from Colleen and Rylan and a cameo by Maggie!

Susan small author photoQPQ: Where can readers connect with you on the web?

SM: Readers can find out more about me and my books on my website: http://www.susanannemason.com/

My author page on Facebook

I LOVE Pinterest!

My Twitter handle is: @samason.

QPQ: Thank you for visiting and sharing some behind-the-scenes information about your books. I’m looking forward to Love’s Faithful Promise already!

 
7 Comments

Posted by on February 22, 2016 in Author Chat

 

Tags: , , , , , ,

Author Interview with Neal Abbott

bhI’m happy to welcome Neal Abbott to the author chair today. I met Neal through an author Facebook group and was honored to be a guest on his blog this spring. I’m thrilled he could return the favor and stop by to celebrate his newest release.

QPQ: Glad to have you here, Neal. Tell us about your latest book.

Neal: Bloodhound is my fifth novel. It’s the tale about the pathos of a Depression-era Oklahoma lawman named Oscar Morgan, the city marshal of Blanchard.

QPQ: Blanchard. What a small world. My grandparents grew up in Blanchard, Oklahoma. For those of you who don’t know, Blanchard’s a pretty small town southwest of Oklahoma City. How did you come up with this story idea?

Neal: there are two sources of inspiration. First of all, Oscar Morgan is a relative of mine. He was the marshal of Blanchard in the 1930s and 40s. But everything in my novel is fictional. He was fairly famous for tracking and arresting a serial killer, so I’ve wanted for a while to write a fictional account of his manhunts.

But the story is more than one arrest. I’ve always enjoyed using intertextual layering in my writing. In the past I’ve used such classic tales as Faust, Thomas Supten, Don Carlos, and Aeneas. I’ve wanted to write a novel based on the labors of Hercules, and Bloodhound is that effort. Oscar Morgan endures the same struggles as Hercules, but instead of hunting lions and boars, he’s after bootleggers and thieves, and yes, a serial killer.

QPQ: How is this story different from your other books? How is it similar?

Neal: The similarity is easier to discuss. All of my novels so far deal with a main character who struggles with the choice between doing what he wants to do and what he ought to do. They are all challenged with obstacles and tempted with an easy way out. But in the end they learn that sacrifice is better than selfishness. Oscar Morgan also faces this same challenge.

Bloodhound is different than my previous four novels in that … well, I can’t really see how it is different. All of my novels have their own setting, and all of the characters have their own quirks, but Marshal Oscar Morgan in Bloodhound struggles against interior and exterior forces to be a good person. All of my protagonists fight that noble fight (that is, until my next novel)

QPQ: Interesting. Seems your writing is taking a new direction. What advice do you have for others who want to publish a book?

Neal: There are some things I wish I knew before I started my first novel. Most of these things have to do with the business side of publishing. An author should learn the publishing business, including marketing. And even before you begin writing you should start building you platform. The best way to go about that is with a blog and a social media presence. Also, there are experts out there who can help in ways you will never know until you go after them. There are professional editors, cover designers, and marketers who can help you.

As far as writing advice, keep on writing. You don’t have to be Hemingway to start your first book. Start it and then finish it. Nothing will stick in your craw more than an unfinished manuscript. Make friends of other writers, both local and on the Internet. Get a few readers whose opinion you trust to read your stuff. And never refer to yourself as an aspiring writer. You are a writer!

QPQ
: What’s coming next for you?

Neal: In June I plan on starting my sixth novel, Entanglement. It’s a slight departure from my previous books. My main character, Rex Monday, is faced with the same challenge of choosing what he wants to do and what he ought to do. But this time, Rex goes with what he wants to do, and his selfishness ruins his life.

I love Russian literature, and one character type common in 19th century Russian literature is the Superfluous Man. They were the idle rich who chased women, gambled, and often got in duels. Rex lives recklessly and other people pay, but he pays the biggest price at the end.

QPQ: And finally, where can readers connect with you on-line?headshot
Neal: Here are a few links to my social media pages:

Bloodhound Amazon Link: http://www.amazon.com/Bloodhound-neal-abbott/dp/150608964X/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1430933263&sr=1-1
Facebook Author Page: https://www.facebook.com/nealabbottcreativewriter
Amazon Author Page: http://www.amazon.com/neal-abbott/e/B009T36LWK/ref=sr_ntt_srch_lnk_11?qid=1431357361&sr=8-11
Creative Writing Blog “A Word Fitly Spoken”: https://nealabbott.wordpress.com/

 
5 Comments

Posted by on May 20, 2015 in Uncategorized

 

Tags: , , ,