As a child, what did you want to be when you grew up? How has that childhood dream affected your career? I wanted to be a teacher and a writer, and that’s exactly what I am.
Tell us about your latest book. One Wet Summer is a contemporary romance, the first in my Georgia Romance series. Here’s my blurb: Maura Fields loves her uncomplicated, independent, single life, but things quickly change when a summer vacation opens the door to an unexpected world of passion and desire. Wealthy Savannah hotelier Ben Driscoll had his playboy lifestyle upended when his ex-wife died, entrusting him to care for their daughter—a child he sequesters and vows to protect from future heartache and disappointment. Can the wall Ben has built around his heart withstand the assault from the intriguing, beguiling Maura, or will it crumble, leaving him vulnerable to the undeniable attraction and unbridled need to make her his own?
Do you have anything new in the works and can you tell us a bit about it? My next book is titled Good Things Come in Tall Packages, number two in my Georgia Romance series. It’s forthcoming from Musa Publishing in August. I’ll share the blurb: When vivacious Savannah attorney and socialite Lucy Alcott entered the Hyatt looking for fun, martinis, and if lucky, some hot sex, the last thing she expected to find was a man who would compel her to reveal her innermost thoughts and challenge her adversity to love and commitment. Polar opposites in every sense of the word, tall, handsome, debonair, African American Dr. Joe Connors, with his compassion, deep spirituality, and philanthropic nature, rocked Lucy like no man had before. When an unexpected meeting six months later brings them together again, will a family crisis and Joe’s request for help overcome Lucy’s fear of losing her heart, or is the fact they are from two worlds and two ethnicities destined to keep them apart forever?
Have you ever used contemporary events or stories “ripped from the headlines” in your work? No. My stories are light-hearted, emotional, very sensual. I’m not a sensationalistic writer—at least not yet!
Is there anything you find particularly challenging about writing? Making time to write is a huge challenge. I’m married with kids and have a demanding career. If I could stay home and write every day, I might, but I do love teaching English, and I adore my students and colleagues at the small community college that employs me.
What advice would you give to writers just starting out? Read as much as possible in the genre you hope to write and publish, and do take advantage of the new ebook market that makes publication accessible to many new writers.
Do you ever suffer from writer’s block? If so, what do you do about it? I get blocked occasionally, but I take a break—read, walk, take a hot bath– then force myself to write. I find that ironically, the harder it is for me to craft, the better the product. Whenever the writing is easy for me, and I’m flying through the pages, I end up having to revise the heck out of that prose.
Who is your favorite author and why? What books have most influenced your life? I have many favorite authors, but as for influential books, I’d say The Tao of Pooh, The Miracle of Mindfulness, and Toni Morrison’s The Bluest Eye stand out as books from which I’ve learned how to be in this world.
How did you deal with rejection letters? I got so many, I’d just file them. I expected them, and I deserved them. I wrote two novels before the third one sold—The Billionaire’s Bauble got picked up by Soul Mate Publishing. Now I’ve sold books four and five– One Wet Summer and Good Things Come in Tall Packages—to Musa Publishing.
What tools do you feel are must-haves for writers? Loads of books and a computer with word processing and access to the internet.
Where do you as an author draw the line on gory descriptions and/or erotic content? I don’t write gore or erotic. I write sexy and sensual. Think Nora Roberts and Sandra Brown sensual. If I did do gore, I’d aspire to a Lee Child or Harlan Coben level. And I don’t think they really get graphic
What’s the weirdest thing you’ve ever done in the name of research? I haven’t done anything weird. I wish I had a great answer, and I could make one up—but the fact is, I hit the memory and the books for all my research.
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