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Monthly Archives: March 2013

Elysa Hendricks, welcome to Romance Lives Forever. Let’s talk
about your book, Lucky’s Leprechaun.

Genre: Contemporary Romance
Publisher: Self-published
Cover artist: Joleene Naylor
Length: 7,000 words
Heat rating: PG
Tagline: Be careful what you wish for.
Blurb:
Lucky no longer believes in wishes, hope, or dreams. Cheated
by his bookkeeper and his ex-girlfriend, he’s resigned himself to losing everything.
Twenty-five years ago curiosity about a small human trapped Diamond,
a leprechaun, inside a crystal paperweight. Now she has one day left to grant Lucky
his final wish or perish.
Can a chance meeting between a little boy and a leprechaun result
in love?
Buy links:
What are your main characters’ names, ages, and occupations?
Salvatore (Lucky) Luciano is 30 years old. He runs O’Roarke’s
an Irish pub in the small town of Council
Falls, IL.
Diamond Tautha is of indeterminate age. She’s a leprechaun.

Interview

How did you get your start
in the industry?
One Christmas Eve a long time ago, in a far away land – no wait,
it was a long time ago, but not that far away, just the suburbs of Chicago – a woman
sat alone. Well, not completely alone. Her five-year-old son was sleeping in the
next room. But her husband and older son were on their way to Arizona to attend a funeral. As a family they’d
decided to postpone their Christmas celebrations until hubby and son returned the
following week. On top of that this poor woman’s parents had recently relocated
to Hawaii.
While sitting there alone on Christmas Eve the woman decided
to write a novel. Her currently absent hubby had been teasing her for years about
all the romances she read, telling her she should write one herself. “How hard
can it be?” he asked. “Boy meets girl. Boy loses girl. Boy gets girl.
You can do that, can’t you?”
So little realizing the incredible journey she was embarking
on she sat at her typewriter (yes, I started writing back in the Dark Ages) and
wrote what she thought would be a short, contemporary romance ala Harlequin. When
the heroine turned out to be a winged, telepathic alien who stows away on a passing
space ship, the woman (me) realized that romance has many flavors other than vanilla.
What websites do you visit
daily?
Aside from my email and hanging out on Facebook, other than for
research I don’t spend much time surfing (do they still call it that?) the Internet.
Occasionally I’ll visit an author’s web page, mostly just to find out what they
have coming out. I don’t read a lot of blogs, there’s just not enough time in the
day to write, read all the great books piling up on my shelves, my Kindle and my
Nook, and manage to have a real life.
If you could change something
about your first book, what would it be?
My first book? You mean the one about the winged, telepathic
alien that resides under my bed guarded by killer dust bunnies? Or the one I first
published? For the former I’d have to make it less derivative of Star Trek: NG.
I didn’t realize until years after I’d written it how much I’d been influenced by
STNG. As for my first published book, Rawhide Surrender, a western historical romance,
I’ve been fortunate to have the opportunity to make all those changes. I received
my rights back and revised, edited and re-issued it electronically under a new title
– Her Wild Texas Heart.
What do you enjoy most
about writing?
I love the creative process. Building worlds. Developing characters.
I can spend hours detailing the flora and fauna of an alien planet, and outlining
the social, political, and religious structures of the people who live there. Creating
the hero, the heroine, the villain and the secondary characters who’ll play out
their lives on the stage that I’ve set is amazing fun. It’s like playing God. Unfortunately,
while I may be the god of the world I’ve created, turns out all my characters are
atheists. They have a tendency not to listen to my directives, but that’s part of
what’s exciting about writing. I discover what’s going to happen next along with
my characters.
If you could choose anyone
to be your mentor who would it be?
Anne McCaffrey would be my first choice. Her Dragon Riders of
Pern novels are still some of my favorite reading. Unfortunately she’s no longer
with us, so I’ll have to attempt to channel her spirit via my muse.
I’ve been fortunate over the years to have the help and advice
(if not an actual mentorship) of many wonderful romance authors – Susan Elizabeth
Phillips, Lindsey Longford, Cathy Linz, Melody Thomas, Ann Macela, Karen McCullough,
Donna MacMeans, and the list goes on. In gratitude for their kindness I try to help
and encourage other writers.
If you could give the
younger version of yourself advice what would it be?
Do be afraid to write crap. Get the story down then edit, revise
and polish it until that sow’s ear becomes, if not a silk purse, at least a serviceable
leather wallet.
What is your work ethic
when it comes to writing?
Unfortunately the older I get the worse my work ethic becomes.
Though I still have tons of stories I want to write (and more occur to me every
day) I just don’t have the energy I used to have. Where I used to be able to sit
and write for hours, now I suffer from bouncing butt syndrome. I thought after my
kids were grown and gone I’d have less distractions in my life. Didn’t turn out
that way.
I don’t have a set writing schedule. When a story is hot in my
head I’ll write for hours. When the story isn’t flowing I tend to fritter away the
time playing on the computer, hanging out on Facebook or reading.
The only non-negotiable work ethic I have is no matter how long
it takes, I finish the damned book.
Do things your family
or friends do ever end up in a book?
I think that bits and pieces of our families, our friends and
ourselves all eventually end up in our writing. Each character I create is a composite
of myself and other people I know. Creating a character is like those Mix’n’Match
flip books we had as kids. I take my hubby’s sense of humor, mix it with Hugh Jackman’s
eyes (and bod), add in a fireman’s uniform and go from there.
What are some jobs you’ve
done before (or while) you were a writer?
I’ve held a number of jobs – store clerk, commercial casualty
insurance underwriter, house cleaner, day care worker, video store owner/operator,
and college text book buyer. Each of these jobs exposed me to people in different
walks of life and added to my understanding and compassion for the human race.
Which of your books would
you recommend to someone who doesn’t normally read your genre, and why?
For someone who doesn’t read romance I’d recommend they check
out The Sword And The Pen. It has both a contemporary and a historical type setting.
I call it my Xena: The Warrior Princess meets Stranger Than Fiction story. The story
centers around a slightly neurotic writer and how his ability to bring his fictional
creations to life turns his life upside down.
What kind of books do
you read when taking a break from your own writing?
I love reading romance of any flavor, but I’ll read just about
any kind of fiction with the possible exception of the really esoteric literary
stuff. If the story is compelling and the writing is good, I don’t care if it’s
a historical saga, a contemporary thriller or a space epic. I also enjoy self-help
books and books that help me research various subjects.
Imagine you get to go
on a dream vacation, but you have only one hour to pack and leave, and it starts
as soon as you finish this interview. What will you take with you and where will
you go?
Since I’ll be headed to someplace warm (I’m not picky – Tahiti,
Belize, Hawaii, Southern California or Florida will do) with sunshine, sand and
surf, I’d pack my swimsuit, t-shirts, shorts, sandals, toiletries, and my Kindle.
Oh, and I’d make sure Hubby came along.
What is your favorite
holiday and why?
I have to say Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday because it’s
all about family and friends gathering to celebrate all the blessings in their lives.
There’s good food, good company, and no pressure to purchase impossible, perfect
gifts.
What do you like to do
when you’re bored?
I can’t remember the last time I was bored. There’s always so
much to do, to see, to read that there’s rarely a time when my mind and body aren’t
engaged in something. The only time I feel bored is when I’m forced to sit and wait
for something or someone and I don’t have access to a book, there’s no one to talk
to, and nothing to look at. But even then I use that time to think about the book
I’m working on, develop characters, figure plot points, or do some world building.
My mother always told me, “Only boring people get bored.”
If you were a color, what
color would you be?
Despite what I said about not getting bored, my motto for real
life is: Boring is good. Excitement is vastly overrated. (I save the adventure and
excitement, especially the physical kind, for the characters in my books.) So I’d
have to pick beige.
Please underline which statement is more like you:
“I am a vacation spa because I am laid back and relaxed.”
“I am a ten-countries in ten-days tour vacation, because
I do things as fast as possible.”

Please complete the sentences

I love pizza with feta cheese, sun dried tomatoes, artichoke
hearts, and olive oil
.
I’m always ready for visits with friends and family.
When I’m alone, I love to read.
You’d never be able to tell, but beneath my outwardly cheerful
personality I’m just as happy inside
.
If I had a halo it would be –
definitely askew (those baby horns keep knocking it off kilter) and tarnished.
If I could carry a tune I’d sing duets with my talented
hubby
.
I can never climb a mountain, because first off I think
it’s a waste of time and secondly I’m afraid of heights
.

Find Me Here

 

Frozen Heart of Fire

Julie Kavanagh, welcome to Romance Lives Forever. Let’s talk
about your book, Frozen Heart of Fire.

Genre: Paranormal Romance
Publisher: Books to Go Now
Length: 48 pages
Blurb:
It’s Valentine’s Night but Eva, the last of the Ice Witches,
isn’t looking for love. On the trail of a demon, she falls into the clutches of
the clan who killed her parents.
Joshua Ravenwood believes she is there to assassinate him for
the crimes of his people and the presence of the mind-killing pain in his head is
surely proof of her intention.
Neither of them expected to find passion in the touch of the
other but neither can deny the sexual attraction building between them.
Will Joshua’s fire burn a pathway to Eva’s cold heart? Can natural
enemies become friends and lovers?
What are your main characters’ names, ages, and occupations?
Eva is an ice witch and
demon hunter. She’s 25 years old.
Joshua is around 28,
heir to the Xandry throne and owns a successful nightclub.

Interview

What do you enjoy most
about writing?
I love the freedom it offers. I can become anyone I want to be
within my characters. Writing also gives me the opportunity to vent some of my frustrations
on my characters especially the nastier ones. When my father died, I used that experience
within one of my Demon Witch books. I killed off two very important characters and
made my heroine go through the emotions as I did. It was a very cathartic experience.
If you could give the
younger version of yourself advice what would it be?
Don’t give up. Never ever give up. I wish I’d been around to
offer this advice because for many years I did give up and I regret it deeply but
I’m back now writing with passion.
What is your work ethic
when it comes to writing?
I have to write every single day or the voices in my head start
to take over. I know it sounds daft but writing helps to dilute the ideas. I don’t
always get to choose when I write although late night tends to work better for me.
Do things your family
or friends do ever end up in a book?
I have a wonderful friend who was having a bad time with her
brother and she asked if I could include him in a book. He became a newly made vampire
who came to a very sticky end. She loved it!
I was asked a few weeks ago by a family member if I used family
as characters. Of course, I said no.
What are some jobs you’ve
done before (or while) you were a writer?
I have been a Customer Services Advisor, an administrator for
a book club. I’ve run my own playgroup, summer playscheme and afterschool club.
I spent five years working in a school nursery and three miserable weeks in a hair
salon.
Which of your books would
you recommend to someone who doesn’t normally read your genre, and why?
I would recommend trying the Demon Witch series starring Luca,
a half -demon blooded Coven Witch. The books contain romance, passion and danger-
not necessarily in that order. I’m totally biased but I love every character in
this series – I have fifteen books written with number four about to be epublished.
The Dark of Demon
What kind of books do
you read when taking a break from your own writing?
I tend to read just about anything from historical novels to
paranormal romances. I’m not very fond of chick lit although I’ve been assured I’m
missing out. I love Stephen King and J R Ward. I really wish I’d thought of the
Black Dagger Brotherhood. What awesome heroes!
What was the proudest
moment of your life so far?
I have a few but the most recent was watching my eldest daughter
receive her degree from her university. I was the typical mother with tears streaming
down my face. She had chosen a difficult path in life it she was determined to get
her degree and, although it took longer than we’d all hoped, I was so proud to witness
her achieve her dream.
What is your favorite
holiday and why?
Every summer four of us travel around England. We love history and ancient
places and there’s so much to see here. The weather isn’t always reliable but we
make the most of it. We love to stay in castles and old coaching inns especially
if we’re on a ghost hunting trip.
What good book have you
read recently?
I’ve just re-read J R Ward’s Black Dagger Brotherhood series
in anticipation of the release of Lover At Last.
Where were you at midnight,
on December 31st when the new century started?
That’s easy. I was with my husband at my best friend’s house.
There was just the four of us, listening to Big Ben chime and watching the fireworks
over the Thames on the TV. We always spend New
Year’s Eve together, it’s a standing tradition.
What do you like to do
when you’re bored?
I like to create. I knit, sew, crochet, embroider and take cool
photos. I don’t cook… please don’t ask me to cook – you’ll regret it.
If you were a color, what
color would you be?
Definitely a shade of purple.
Please underline which
statement is more like you:
“I am a vacation spa because I am laid back and relaxed.”
“I am a ten-countries in ten-days tour vacation, because
I do things as fast as possible.”

Please complete the sentences

I love pizza with other people so they can eat it. Pizza…yukkkk
I’m always ready for another story.
When I’m alone, I’m content.
You’d never be able to tell, but I talk to dead people.
If I had a halo it would be too
tight for comfort
.
If I could be invisible I’d go check out the Queen.
I’d love to see how she spends her day
.
I can never go into small places because I’m claustrophobic.

Find Me Here

Michael J. McDonald, welcome to Romance Lives Forever.
Let’s talk about your book, The Red Queen.

Genre:
Romantic Fantasy
Publisher:
Books to Go Now
Cover
artist: Jenna White
Length:
31 pages
Heat
rating: Medium
Tagline:
“Long live the Queen!”
Blurb:
The Red Queen is a political thriller set in a world of medieval fantasy,
against a backdrop of political and sexual corruption. The king of Liberi
passes away, leaving his crown to his ambitious son, while his wayward daughter
struggles to deal with her apathy and indulgence. Her old friend, the Cardinal,
reminds the Princess of her sense of duty to her people, who are caught in the
cross-fire of her brother’s machinations.
Buy
links:
What are your main characters’
names, ages, and occupations?
Princess
Amelia, in her early 20s, is the younger sister of the heir to the throne and,
with no responsibilities and a liberal attitude to love, the embarrassing
open-secret of the royal family.
Private
Leroy, 19, is the fresh-faced batman for the esteemed, pompous General Stagg,
and in his own shy way intrigues the Princess far more than his blustering
superior.

Interview

How did you get your start in
the industry?
I
have been writing for almost my entire life. I recall on my very first day of
school, before I could even write letters by hand, our teacher gave us simple
words printed on card to slot together to make sentences. I soon ran out and
asked for more to complete my epic tale. Creative writing became my favorite
activity and by the time I was in high school I was writing lengthy fan
fictions and otherwise steeping myself in the process of storytelling. When I
entered the University
of Glasgow,
I started taking things a bit more seriously, and managed to win a couple of
awards for essay writing while also getting a few credits for short stories
under my belt.
What is the most important thing
you do for your career now, as compared to when you first started writing?
It
is still the same really –
write. To keep the momentum going and keep building a profile, I need to have
material out there and I always need to find ways to reach new readers.
What websites do you visit
daily?
I
keep an eye on various blogs through Google Reader, particularly K.M. Weiland’s
Wordplay and the Smashwords blog. I
also check out political sites like Crooksandliars.com and The Young Turks,
because I’m cynical and like to be reminded why. I pop up on Wattpad now and
then, too, but not every day.
If you could change something
about your first book, what would it be?
At
the last moment, I actually changed something quite radically. It is a
generation-spanning fantasy where a teenage girl inherits a tremendous power
from her mother, who survived a cataclysmic explosion that destroyed her
homeland. Essentially it is a tale of a nuclear-powered superhero, in a
steam-punk setting where everyone is trapped underground due to the fallout
from a magical war. I wrote it in perfect chronological order, starting with
the meeting of the main characters’ parents and ending with the main characters’
conflict with her nemesis seventeen years later. Reading through in yet another
final edit, I realized that there was a problem: the main character is not
introduced until about a third of the way through the book. Her mother’s story
is compelling in itself, but she disappears from the main narrative as her
daughter comes to prominence, so I worried that a break in character might be
jarring for the reader. Splitting the novel into two had been my very first
intention during outlining but it never sat well with me to put off the real
story I wanted to tell for a whole other book. So I jumbled up the order,
threading the two characters’ stories together, and found I had a much stronger
piece. The two perspectives provide a counterpoint to one another, and moving
back and forth in time allowed for a subtler hand to be used in foreshadowing
since I did not have to worry about readers remembering little details a
hundred pages later.
If I
could change anything else now that Underworld is available, I might still have
split it up after all. I am proud of how the novel turned out, but I have
trouble leaving characters alone, and now that it’s done I still find myself
imagining new ways to bolster the story and add even more depth to the opening
act. It could have stood alone as a novel, but I am glad I got out the real
story I intended to tell.
What do you enjoy most about
writing?
The
power. Not that I am an egomaniac or anything, honest, but it is a taste of
being a god. The fate of your characters and their world is in your hand,
literally. Yet even when in complete control, some strange things can make it
onto the page, and characters can come up with unbidden ideas that add an
unexpected twist to a carefully crafted story. Writing down what is in one’s
head is still full of surprises, and that is what I love best of all. Like the
reader, I’m dying to find out what happens next.
If you could choose anyone to be
your mentor who would it be?
In
terms of writing, my favorite author of all time is Terry Pratchett, and I
adore the way his stories can be both darkly satirical and side-splitting at
the same time. To be under his wing and learn how to walk that tightrope
between zany humor and deep social commentary would be an honor. I am fortunate
enough to have met him at a book signing for the Discworld novel Going Postal.
If you could give the younger
version of yourself advice what would it be?
I
would remind myself to always keep going. I have had some setbacks, not least
of which is losing the capacity to hold a pen for any length of time, and have
become my most crushing critic. I achieved more in my youth than a good number
of aspiring writers, but I wish I had not wasted so much time lamenting what
could not be helped and had channeled more energy into more output. My best
advice to my younger self would have been to keep writing.
What is your work ethic when it
comes to writing?
I
would love to take the Douglas Adams approach and enjoy the sound of deadlines
as they whoosh by, but that does not pay the bills. Still, being a creative
process there are times when writing simply cannot be forced. I’m not too
strict with myself; I know some people who write with their Internet cable
unplugged just to stop them getting distracted by checking just one more tweet,
but that sort of thing seems overkill. I just take what chances I get – whenever there’s time and
space, I turn on my word processor, put on my headphones and see how far I get
before something else gets in the way.
How do you cope with stress as
an author?
Writing
actually helps me cope with stress. When I am dealing with my own characters
and their world and their problem, my own tends to fade into the background.
Do things your family or friends
do ever end up in a book?
Never
directly, though once or twice I have had friends who are certain they have
spotted someone based on them. As any introvert writer I am an observer of
people, and usually observe them a bit more closely than they realize, but it
is all in aid of learning about how people work and what drives them so I can
translate that into realistic characters who seem to move themselves through
the plot.
What are some jobs you’ve done
before (or while) you were a writer?
My
day job is in Information Technology, so I generally work with computers all
the time anyway, so sitting in front of a keyboard for far too long is not a
stretch for me. My education was initially in archaeology, which unfortunately
I could not pursue due to injury, but the skills remain valuable as a writer
who must piece together the puzzle of a story and bring skeletal characters
from my head to life on the page.
Which of your books would you
recommend to someone who doesn’t normally read your genre, and why?
I
would recommend Good Enough (available
on Smashwords and Amazon), a short fantasy set in the same universe as
Underworld. It’s a tragic romance between a countess accused of treason and her
confessor, a young monk who is torn between temptation, compassion and duty. It
gets a little erotic but by no means lewd, and there is enough political
intrigue and medieval fantasy trappings to make it a gentle introduction to
romantic fantasy. If you were interested in giving romance a shot and want to
raise your heart-rate while reading a substantive fantasy-world plot, I believe
Good Enough would be a great start.
What kind of books do you read
when taking a break from your own writing?
I
read all sorts of things –
biographies, horror, contemporary fiction, fantasy/science fiction and far too
many books on writing. As I mentioned earlier, I am a huge fan of the Discworld series, and enjoy other work
in a similar vein. Surprisingly, for a fantasy writer I am not so fond of
traditional high fantasy. I loved The
Hobbit
, but I found Lord of the Rings
a chore, and avoid things like the Wheel
of Time
series and Dungeons and
Dragons
novels. Too many silly names and mountains of needless description
seem to get in the way. It is a bit difficult to become intimate with
characters when there’s fifty of them, all with three apostrophes in their
name. It might be why I cannot help but smile at Pratchett’s lampooning of this
tradition with giving his main characters bizarre names like ‘Moist’.
What do you think is the future
of traditional publishing?
Like
Dibbler of Ankh-Morpork, I fear that in their effort to stay in the market they
are in danger of cutting their own throat. While independent publishing and
e-books have risen to prominence, I have seen the traditional gatekeepers
merely redouble their efforts to remain an almost impenetrable fortress in the
face of aspiring authors. When I can upload my story to Smashwords the day I
finish it – or have a company like Books To Go Now turn it around in a month
for electronic publication – and my work is in front of millions in an instant
and at a very reasonable price, why would I wait six to twelve months for an
agent or editor to even read the manuscript?
Traditional
publishing seems to believe it is in their interest to put every hurdle they
can imagine in front of an author. Many agents and publishers do not want
simultaneous submissions, but they take so long to wade through the hopeful, if
you play by the rules it could take a decade just to get a dozen agents to
glance at your work. Then they treat customers no better, insisting on DRM and
unreasonably high prices for electronic media that costs essentially nothing to distribute. Books themselves remain significantly expensive, running up to $30 for
a new fiction novel, which is seriously off-putting to anyone not entirely
confident they’ll enjoy it. It is a system that seems designed to maintain the
status quo and avoid anybody taking risks, even readers, and I worry that with
infinite space on Kindles yet finite time in customers’ schedules, eventually
traditional publishers will find their wares just are not in demand. We already
lost Borders because browsing a book store and picking something out is
becoming an increasing gamble at higher and higher price points and with less
innovation making it to the shelves.
Imagine you get to go on a dream
vacation, but you have only one hour to pack and leave, and it starts as soon
as you finish this interview. What will you take with you and where will you go?
Have
laptop, will travel. I guess I’d stuff some underwear and socks and things in
my bag too, and some pain pills. Beyond that, what more do I need? I would
probably hop on the first plane to JFK and find myself a nice hotel room
somewhere in New York City, and spend my days wandering and absorbing the
atmosphere of such a lively and historic place before spending my nights
writing while sitting up in bed and trying not to be distracted by HBO.
What is your favorite holiday
and why?
Christmas.
I’m not a Christian myself but that doesn’t stop it from being a very special
time of year and a great reason to get together with family and share stories
and food and drink with people I should not really have to find excuses to
visit.
What good book have you read
recently?
Good Enough
I
just finished She’s Come Undone by
Wally Lamb. Not a recent book by any means, but a tremendous story of quiet
triumph over enormous personal tragedy and trauma. It’s an unusual one for me
since I tend to feel more affinity with the hopeless than those who struggle on
for decades as Delores Price does, but Lamb avoids easy answers and any sense
of happily ever after. Delores might get better, to an extent, but that doesn’t
undo who she was and what was done to her.
Where were you at midnight, on
December 31st when the new century started?
I
was at a relative’s house, watching fireworks exploding over the river Clyde. I think I stayed up until every time zone had hit
the year 2000, and I annoyed people by pointing out that the 21st
century technically did not begin until 2001.
What do you like to do when you’re
bored?
Play
video games. I don’t own a console and I am long burnt out on all the shooters
that seemed so cool and exciting in my youth, though, so I tend to play a lot
of indie titles and RPGs. I love any game that tells a story, especially if it
has a quirky style to it. I adore the scope of something like Skyrim, where I
have an entire country to wander and forge my own myths within, but that doesn’t
stop me enjoying something so much simpler, like Cave Story.
If your life became a movie, who
would you want to play you?
Ed
Westwick (Chuck Bass of Gossip Girl) strikes me as the right choice. Aside from
me being not nearly as tall and handsome, his time on Gossip Girl showed how
well he can portray a haunted, pained character. And, being from the UK,
I imagine he would have little issue with my faint trace of a Scottish accent.
If you were a color, what color
would you be?
Black.
Call me Emo, morose, macabre, whatever, but black is starkly simple while
unnervingly mysteriously, so that has always been my color. Even if my art
teacher swore it’s not a color, but a shade.
What do you wish I had asked
you? Please ask and answer it now.
I
wish you had asked where I get my ideas; that seems to be the stock question
writers face. I often come across people who are enthused about writing but
lack the energy or commitment to follow through, and they seem so surprised
that I am able to uncover not just one but many stories. To them, it’s as if I
can summon my muse at the drop of a hat, and that can seem intimidating to a
wannabe who has trouble fleshing out a single skeleton of a story. As boring as
the question may seem to writers who have heard it over and over, I think it is
valuable to encourage would-be storytellers that coming up with ideas is both
harder than it seems and easier than you might think. Every author has their
own way to drink from the well of imagination, but for myself, I tend to use
music. If I close my eyes and let myself be carried away by a track or an
album, my mind can dump me on some very strange shores and I often find the
basics of an idea bob along into my imagination, like a message in a bottle.
Please underline which
statement is more like you:
“I
am a vacation spa because I am laid back and relaxed.”
“I
am a ten-countries in ten-days tour vacation, because I do things as fast as
possible.”

Please
complete the sentences

I
love pizza with friends.
I’m
always ready for a drink.
When
I’m alone, I procrastinate. It’s only when people are around that I seem to find
the will to write
.
You’d
never be able to tell, but I’m a grumpy misanthrope.
If I had a halo it would be sitting in a pawn shop window,
traded for a spiffy cane
.
If I could, I would. At least once.
I
can never hear myself think because my parakeets won’t shut up.

Previous
Books

Underworld
Good
Enough
The
Red Queen
Fall
to Climb
And
others…
Michael J McDonald

Books
Coming Soon

Portman Island Counter Terrorism
Tramp
The Dirt
The
Hellfire Club

Find Me
Here

Destiny

KC Maguire, welcome to Romance Lives Forever. Let’s talk about
your book, Destiny.
Genre: Science Fiction Romance
Publisher: Books to Go Now
Length: 10,000 words approx.
Heat rating: 7 out of 10
Tagline: What if you could live forever with the one you love?
All you have to lose is your humanity.
Blurb:
In earth’s future, humans are becoming more like robots and robots
are becoming more human. As Joe Baker’s friends and family undergo the Transition
– a procedure enabling humans to upload their personalities into robotic replicas
– Joe discovers that his android companion, Destiny, is developing sentience. And
falling in love with him. Joe’s conflicted feelings about becoming a machine and
his growing fondness for Destiny confuse him about his own future. His best friend,
Cutler, is pressuring him to
Transition before it’s too late. Does Cutler know more than he’s
saying? If Joe Transitions, he can be with Destiny forever, but at what cost? As
he pursues his options, Joe learns some startling truths about the Transition and
the
nature of humanity … and love.
Buy links:
What are your main characters’ names, ages, and occupations?
Joe Baker, retired, middle aged
Destiny, android, ageless
Cutler, middle aged, Joe’s best friend and BPB agent (ie Biosphere
Preservation Bureau)

Interview

Tell us about your story’s
world. What is it like in this period or place?
This book is set in earth’s future when humans are uploading
their consciousness into androids so they can live forever. Most think it’s a wonderful
advancement, but Joe is afraid of losing his soul, the thing that makes him essentially
different and that differentiates him from the technology that surrounds him.
What inspired you to write
this book?
Reading “Alone Together” by Sherry Turkle who is a psychologist
working with robotics at M.I.T. She talks about how technology that is supposed
to bring humans together often ends up making us less human.
Which character in your
current book do you think readers will like the most? Why?
Destiny. She’s a naïve, innocent robot who accidentally becomes
sentient and falls in love with her roommate, Joe.
Why do you write?
It makes me happy to communicate ideas to others and to create
new worlds for us all to play in.
When you write, what things
do you want close at hand? (Coffee, water, chocolate… pictures of gorgeous hunks
for inspiration…?)
LOTS of coffee! Can never have enough!
When you’re not writing,
what would we find you doing?
Playing with my kids. They’re 2, 5 and 7 – really fun ages.
Are you a plotter, or
do you prefer to make it up on the spur of the moment?
Yep, I’m definitely a “fly by the seat of my pants” kinda girl.
A writing instructor once told me to let the characters go where they want to go
and do what they have to do. This has always worked for me.
Looking back at your first
book, what do you wish you had done differently?
I think I should have given my heroine more guts and spunk, but
you live and learn.
What’s your writing schedule
like?
Very random, frantic and completely disorganized.
Any advice for new authors?
Believe in yourself. Find others who share your passion and don’t
be afraid to share ideas with them.
When an idea hits you,
what do you do to capture it?
Lots of sticky notes on the bedside table.
Which of your books was
the hardest to write and why?
I think this one was. With science fiction, it’s very hard to
create an effective balance between action and world-building. The reader has to
have enough information not to get lost in the strange new world the writer has
created, but not too much that it gets in the way of the action.
What are you currently
reading for fun? Anything for research?
I love the new YA science fiction books. I just started reading
“Cinder” which I’m very much enjoying so far.
What’s the best gift you
ever received?
An Amazon gift card with a sufficient amount to buy my first
Kindle.
If you could time travel
what era would be your first stop?
Ooh – would have to go to earth’s future and hope we haven’t
made too much of a mess of things.
Do you believe in luck?
I’d like to say I believe in “Destiny” – no pun intended (well,
maybe …)
What kind of music do
you listen to while driving? Same question when writing?
When driving, I listen pretty exclusively to audiobooks. I can’t
listen to music when writing. I need quiet to focus.
Do you play any musical
instruments?
Piano (badly).
What’s your favorite movie?
I’m a sucker for a good old fashioned rom-com. Don’t know how
many times I’ve watched “When Harry Met Sally”.
Are you the eldest, middle,
baby, or only child?
Eldest.

Please complete the sentence

I love pizza with my kids.
I’m always ready for a trip to the movies.
When I’m alone, I read, read, read.
You’d never be able to tell, but I was born in Australia.
If I had a halo it would be silver/blue.
If I could fly I’d circle the world.
I can never sleep because I have too many ideas going
around in my head.

Previous Books

Dear John (as KC Maguire) http://amzn.com/B008D5324K

Books Coming Soon

Ivory Tower (coming out at amazon.com)

Find Me Here

Romance Lives Forever welcomes author
Susan D Taylor to the blog for an article about writers and writing.
– – –

The Yoga of Writing, by Susan D. Taylor

The yoga of anything, to me, means the place to find steady endurance.
A place to be grounded and move effortlessly. That is one of the primary definitions
of yoga. The Sanskrit root for yoga means to yoke or bind. Minds out of the BDSM
red room. LOL. Yoga is an encompassing way of life used to ground the restless mind
while centering the “self” within the body. In this way it is possible to move beyond
focusing on the issues plaguing the physical, intellectual, and emotional self.
To be ultimately free.
So then what is the yoga of writing? My interpretation is a place
to find the ability to write without hindrances. For some people that place might
be a physical location. Office, desk, laptop. For others it’s a state a mind: peaceful,
exhilarating, motivated. Or this yogic state is as simple as a quality within the
atmosphere.
For me, the yoga of writing is all of those and none. The yoking
I experience from writing is the very grounding of my mind when I’m prepared and
able to find creative release. The release experienced in a yoga class, a yoga mat,
or a yogic moment, are the same. A small “aha” or something of an epiphany in understanding.
In writing it is the moment of transcending one realm beyond the chair where I find
the ability to be free to create the movement in a story or simply a sentence that
resonates. Those moments for me do not last long. The human experience, my skill
level, what’s going on in life impact the occurrence, and breath of creativity.
But if I am aware of what I need to get there, it is possible to find my way back.
For some writers, blocks occur and it is discovering how to get
around these walls or veils. Learning to let go, I accept maybe not today. I am
free to simply be. The more we push or pull, Newton’s laws may be invisible and in affect.
For every action… We must be careful to create open spaces in our lives where our
judgments are left at the door and we are permitted entrance without regard for
what we produce or not.
The yoga of writing is more acceptance than anything else. Learning
to find and own who I am at this moment so that it is possible to show up again
and again. The steady grace of coming back each day, and willingness to start again
whether it be sitting at a desk, walking with my dogs, or on the mat.
Namaste.
Favorite quote:
“Sexy is a strange thing. I’m not sure it has to do with sex.
Sexy has to do with not knowing what’s coming next. It’s unpredictability.”
― Christopher Walken
Susan Azpillaga-Taylor,
RYT 200 Yoga Alliance

Author of Secret Desire

Find Me Here

RLF Gems

In February, Romance Lives Forever introduced two new
features. Cover Love is a short intro to a book and includes only a blurb, buy
links, and social media contacts for the author. We use it if one of our scheduled
authors is unable to appear, and no other material is on hand. If you would
like to submit your book for this feature, see the FAQ page for more
information. The other was a full week dedicated to one publisher. There will
be four this year, including Liquid Silver Books
in June, and JMS Books LLC in September. For
February, it was the Boroughs
Publishing Group
, “Where Story Matters.”
There were 7 posts by Boroughs, 17 author interviews, 3 book
releases, and 1 article for 28 posts in a 28 day month.
There were unusual ties this month. Jerrie Alexander and Keta Diablo
shared a spot because their posts went up the same day. Boroughs took first,
third, and fourth place, and three people had even numbers of hits for fifth. Here
are the top posts (judging by page hits).
1. Boroughs Publishing
2. Jerrie Alexander / Keta Diablo
3. Boroughs Publishing
4. Boroughs Publishing
5. Vicki Batman
5. Allie Ritch
5. Donna Cummings
Authors who guest with us are promoted on Facebook, via
Triberr to over 549k potential readers, are featured front page in the daily Romance Lives Forever Paper.li ezine,
and the blog has its own hashtag (#rlfblog) on Twitter. This year, we also
created the Booklover’s Guide to Romance
Lives Forever
with links to guest authors’ books and social media. It is
110 pages crammed full of who to follow and what to read. The FAQ page provides
updated downloads of optional interview questions, and a guide to the blog. You
can also grab our button to promote your visit.
My thanks to all who took part this month. You made Romance
Lives Forever a great place to discover new books and authors.
Other participants this month in alphabetical order by first
name are:
Ashlynne Laynne, Brita
Addams, Chris Karlsen, Helena Harker, Janet Elizabeth Jones, Jennifer France, Kara
Leigh Miller, Lorrie Struiff, Lynda Kaye Frazier, Paloma Beck, Raine Delight, Serena
Zane, Tara Fox Hall, Vicki Batman, Victoria Blisse

Sister Blogs for Romance Lives
Forever Launching Soon

Pure Hearts Romance
— Sweet Romance, Spunky Authors
Books at Lunch —
Your Lunchtime Hangout for Great Books
Gay Romance Lit — Never
the Same Romance. Always the Same Sex.
(watch for details)

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