Tag Archives: romantic suspense

Today’s Tease…Michelle Grogan

Welcome! Pull up a seat and enjoy a chat with Today’s Tease Michelle Grogan

Your Name or Pen Name you use:  Michelle Grogan

Title of the book you are promoting:  Forbidden Love and Is Love Enough (two installments in a trilogy)

Link to purchase your Book:  Forbidden Love http://amzn.to/p3ixpD Is Love Enough http://amzn.to/16DKkco

Genre:  romantic suspense

Welcome  MG…I, LH have some questions for you 😉

LH: I wanted to be a ballerina, race car driver and a private detective when I was little. What did you want to be when you grew up?

MG: When I grew up I wanted to be a teacher – which is what I am by day.

LH: I didn’t really have a literary influence, I just decided one day to start writing. Who influenced you in your writing career?

MG: There was no one author I can pinpoint as being a literary influence in my writing career, but I’ve always been an avid reader. When I was younger I also used to act out stories with my Barbie dolls. When I was in junior high school I began writing those stories down.

LH: I self published all of my books and was then “discovered” by a publisher. Are you an Indie or published author?

MG: I am an Indie author. I tried the traditional route with no success, so I tried out the Indie route where I found success and feel more in control of my own work.

LH: As an Indie Author, I was hesitant about being with a publishing company. If you are an Indie author, would you like to be published by a traditional publisher and if so, why or why not?

MG: As an Indie author if I was offered a publishing deal I might consider it. I think after two years as an Indie author I would be cautious about giving up so much control of my work, but on the flip side I might be able to learn more about the industry and get some help in the areas I know I am lacking – such as marketing.

LH: This is easy for me…I’d invite Johnny Depp and I would not discuss movies!  Who would you invite to dinner, living or dead, and what one topic would you NOT discuss with them?

MG: I think I would invite all of the authors that I love to read and I would not discuss any of their work – or mine. It would just be a free flowing dinner and discussion.

LH: I personally think that there is way too much sex and violence everywhere in society these days and it’s everywhere but that Hollywood is one of the biggest contributors.  Do you think that society as a whole is subjected to too much sex and violence and are you concerned about it? Ever feel conflicted and if so, why?

MG: I do agree that there is too much sex and violence nowadays, but I don’t think I’m overly concerned by it…it’s the trend at the moment and might not last. In my own writing I do not feel conflicted as I do not use excessive sex. As for violence, it kind of comes with the territory of the suspense aspect of romantic suspense.

LH: I’m a huge softy and by no means a beauty queen… lol but, I truly would want world peace in the blink of an eye if I could make it happen…If you could change one thing in the world, in the blink of an eye, what would it be?

MG: The one thing I would change in the blink of an eye, if I could, would be how people treat each other.

LH: With the traditional bookstore becoming obsolete and everyone turning to buying books online, I don’t buy the hype that “the cover is everything”. How important do you think book covers are now that almost all shopping is done online?

MG: I still think the cover is important even with online purchasing. When I purchase a book online, the cover is still the first thing I look at before going to the book description.

LH: I can remember wanting to write as a kid. I got a really late start! Have you always wanted to write and when did you start?

MG: I started writing when I was in 7th grade, but it was mostly just for myself. In college I began writing what is now called flash fiction and fan fiction. Then I moved onto my own stories and publication.

LH: I love to see if I can see myself in a character. What interests you most about a story?

MG: Character development is one of my favorite aspects of a story. I love reading series books for this reason and now find myself doing the same thing so I can see my characters grow and change.

LH: For me, I just get hit with this whole movie in my head and start writing. How do you come up with your stories?

MG: I read a lot. I watch TV. The stories just kind of appear and I go with it.

LH: I can’t tell you or I’d have to…lol Are you working on anything now?

MG: I am working on the final installment of my romantic suspense trilogy as well as a short story collection.

LH: I’m working on #6…5 are published and the last is due out this year… How many books have you written? How many have been published?

MG: I’ve written two books so far and both are currently published.

LH: I write for fun I don’t even dream of riches…Do you write for fun or money?

MG: I write for passion and fun. I have to write. The characters need to tell their story.

LH: Some of my family members had a bit of a problem with me writing my first book “A Beautiful Liar” because the character Maggie West is basically me…to a point 😉 They had a problem with the genre and me “putting it all out there” so to speak so I took a pen name. They eventually came around as I have never cared who knows who I am what I’ve done or what they think of me. I’ve never wanted to be famous, just infamous! What has been your biggest problem when it comes to family or friends when writing?

MG: I have not had any problems with my family or friends when it’s come to my writing, the genre of my writing or using my real name. My family in particular has been very supportive of my writing.

LH: I have never experienced writers block…I have experienced writers “don’t want to”… Have you ever experienced writers block and if so, how did you overcome it?

MG: Unfortunately I have experienced writer’s block and it lasted for a good couple of years. I had to eventually change my writing habits when they stopped working for me.

LH: I get asked all the time “Do you have any advice for new writers?”… Do you?

MG: Just write. And keep writing. And take the chance to put your work out there and follow your dreams. It’s scary, but it’s scary in a good way.

LH: I would not change one thing in my life as I would not be me if I did… If you could go back in time and change one thing in your life, what would it be?

MG: I really wouldn’t change anything. Sure, there are things about my life I don’t like having happened, but it’s my life and I wouldn’t change any of it because that would mean changing who I am.

LH: I would freak out if someone contacted me and said they wanted to make one of my books or my series of book into a movie as I am really very shy in person and I’d probably go into hiding. I don’t think I could handle it. How would you handle it? Who would be the first person you told?

MG: If any of my books were to be made into a movie the first person I would tell would be my fiance and then my mother. I’m not sure how I would handle it, but I am not always big on being the center of attention. I’m sure it would be overwhelming but so very exciting!!

Thanks for that fun and interesting interview MG…Now… for the fun stuff!

Favorite Beverage? Fruity juices – mostly the ones that are not all that good for you!!

Exercise or Bubble Bath? Bubble bath

Favorite Color? blue

Take out or Dine in? take out

Camping or Hotel? hotel

Sports or Chocolate? chocolate

Dogs or Cats? Both!!!

Favorite Food? Ice cream

Favorite Song? Right now – Blurred Lines by Robin Thicke

Favorite Movie? Coyote Ugly

Favorite Car? My 2013 Prius

Sex or Chocolate? (The answer “Both” is totally acceptable 😉 Both!!

And now for the essay part of the interview 😉

LH: If you could go anywhere for a week, with anyone you wanted and no one would ever find out about it…where would you go, what would you do and who would you take?

MG: If I could go anywhere for a week, with anyone I wanted and no one would ever find out about it, I would go back to Rome, Italy with my fiance and we would explore every nook and cranny of the city.

Thanks for spending this time with us. Make sure to pick up your copy of Michelle Grogan’s

Forbidden Love

http://amzn.to/p3ixpD

and

Is Love Enough

http://amzn.to/16DKkco

ForbiddenLove-MichelleGrogan IsLoveEnough 2012-08-20 17.04.09

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Today’s Tease…Norma Beishir, Toni Collins and Scarlett Martin

Welcome! Pull up a seat and enjoy a chat with Today’s Tease Norma Beishir, Toni Collins and Scarlett Martin! 

Your Name or Pen Name you use:  Norma Beishir…but I’m also known as Toni Collins and Scarlett Martin!

Title of the book you are promoting:  I don’t have a new book out yet, so for now I’m promoting my self-pubbed titles—two originals and three ebook editions of previously published novels.

Link to purchase your Book: 

http://www.amazon.com/Norma-Beishir/e/B002BMF4CO/ref=sr_tc_ep?qid=1307984690

http://www.smashwords.com/books/search?query=Norma+Beishir

Genre:  supernatural romance, romantic suspense, and romantic comedy.

Welcome NB….I, LH have some questions for you 😉

LH: I wanted to be a ballerina, race car driver and a private detective when I was little. What did you want to be when you grew up?

NB: I can’t remember ever wanting to be anything but a writer. Oh, wait a minute. I did go through a period during which I wanted to be a jockey. My favorite movie when I was a kid was National Velvet. I wanted to do what Elizabeth Taylor’s character had done in the movie…but as good a rider as I was, being a writer was a more realistic ambition!

LH: I didn’t really have a literary influence, I just decided one day to start writing. Who influenced you in your writing career?

NB: Influences? My mother, for one. She always wanted to write. She didn’t actively pursue it, but she gave me the bug. Another influence was my junior high English teacher. She encouraged me. 

As for literary influences—E.B.White was the first. I fell in love with Charlotte’s Web in the third grade and read it over and over and over. I loved that book! Later, the most important influences were Jacqueline Susann and Sidney Sheldon. I think I learned more about writing from reading Sheldon than I did from any other author.

LH: I self published all of my books and was then “discovered” by a publisher. Are you an Indie or published author?

NB: Indie! My first fourteen novels were published by traditional Big Six publishers, and I’ll be the first to say that I was very fortunate to have been published by both of them. Berkley not only bought my first novel, they bought two more on proposal for a six-figure advance before I’d even finished the first. Never in my wildest dreams did I really believe that would happen!

They published my books as lead titles—second position on their lists, usually behind Robin Cook or Dame Brown, a very nice place to be for a newbie like me. They promoted the books, advertised them in major publications, and supported my career in every way. 

But there’s always a downside. I was not being allowed to do books I really wanted to do. I’ll never forget the day my agent told me one of my projects had been rejected because it “wasn’t glamorous.” That was when I knew I had a big problem. Anyone who knows me will tell you I’m not into glamour. I’m a jeans and T-shirts gal.  I wouldn’t even wear shoes if I could get away with it. I don’t know Donna Karan from Kmart!

LH: As an Indie Author, I was hesitant about being with a publishing company. If you are an Indie author, would you like to be published by a traditional publisher and if so, why or why not?

NB: Been there, done that—and the answer is no. I’d never go back.  Why not? I can sum it up in two words: creative freedom. Now I do whatever I want.

When I was younger, I was all about the money and the bestseller lists. Now, all that matters to me is being able to make a living writing the books I really want to write.

LH: This is easy for me…I’d invite Johnny Depp and I would not discuss movies!  Who would you invite to dinner, living or dead, and what one topic would you NOT discuss with them?

NB: Johnny Depp—that would be interesting! Wow…I’d have to think about this one for a minute. My first thought is to say Jesus Christ. Invite Jesus to dinner but don’t discuss religion—right!

That would be like inviting Joss Whedon to dinner and not discussing The Avengers or Firefly.  Or Mark Zuckerberg and not asking why Facebook’s such a screwed-up mess.

I know…I’d invite Noah and never once mention the weather forecast!

LH: I personally think that there is way too much sex and violence everywhere in society these days and it’s everywhere but that Hollywood is one of the biggest contributors.  Do you think that society as a whole is subjected to too much sex and violence and are you concerned about it? Ever feel conflicted and if so, why?

NB: I do. I feel conflicted when I have to use violence in a scene I’m writing. I’m very uncomfortable with violence, to the point that sometimes, when I’m watching on TV, I’ll turn the channel. I don’t like plots involving serial killers, things like that. I don’t like to watch anything involving rape, no BDSM, none of that.

It’s funny…I used to enjoy movies with a lot of sex. Now, not so much. Maybe it’s because I’m getting old. Seriously. I’ll be sixty in August. That’s pretty old.

LH: I’m a huge softy and by no means a beauty queen… lol but, I truly would want world peace in the blink of an eye if I could make it happen…If you could change one thing in the world, in the blink of an eye, what would it be?

NB: Just one thing? Okay, that would have to be drugs. Rid the world of drugs. That’s where the sickest crimes come from—drug-addled minds.

LH: With the traditional bookstore becoming obsolete and everyone turning to buying books online, I don’t buy the hype that “the cover is everything”. How important do you think book covers are now that almost all shopping is done online?

NB: I do—I suppose because I still pay attention to them. But then, I’m like a crow with shiny things. I have a thing for color—I’m drawn to bright, vivid colors. A good cover design with bold colors catches my eye every time! That’s what a book cover does for me—it catches my eye. But from that point on, the book itself has to hold my attention.

LH: I can remember wanting to write as a kid. I got a really late start! Have you always wanted to write and when did you start?

NB: Early—eight or nine. I was always in trouble in school for writing stories when I should have been paying attention in class (or at least they kept telling me I should have been paying attention….)

LH: I love to see if I can see myself in a character. What interests you most about a story?

NB: When I started out, it was the plot. One editor used to call me the Master Plotter. Now, I’m more interested in character.

LH: For me, I just get hit with this whole movie in my head and start writing. How do you come up with your stories?

NB: I usually get my ideas from real life events. For example, Alexander’s Empire was inspired by a news story out of Italy in the early ’80s. A little boy had fallen into a well. For days, attempts were made to rescue him—but he died there. As the mother of a toddler, I was deeply affected by the story. I started to wonder—what if he had survived somehow? What if he had ended up in an underground cave and was rescued without his parents’ knowledge and grew up as someone else’s child—but was troubled by dreams of his past life? That’s how most of my stories begin.

LH: I can’t tell you or I’d have to…lol Are you working on anything now?

NB: Yes! I’ve been moving in a whole new direction for while now. My current work in progress, Superhero in Training, is about an aspiring comic book writer who creates a superhero identity that takes on a life of its own in a quirky Midwestern college town.

I’m also almost finished with a collaborative effort with James Morgan (aka William Kendall), Same Time Tomorrow, about a couple who meet and fall in love online.  And no, it’s not autobiographical!  

LH: I’m working on #6…3 are published and the other 3 are due out this year… How many books have you written? How many have been published?

NB: I’ve lost track of how many I’ve written—but sixteen of them are published and with luck, three more will be published within the coming year.

LH: I write for fun I don’t even dream of riches…Do you write for fun or money?

I’m trying to remember who said, “Writing is like prostitution. First you do it for love, then you do it for a few friends, and finally you do it for money.” I was backward. First I did it for money. Now I do it for love.

LH: Some of my family members had a bit of a problem with me writing my first book “A Beautiful Liar” because the character Maggie West is basically me…to a point 😉 They had a problem with the genre and me “putting it all out there” so to speak so I took a pen name. They eventually came around as I have never cared who knows who I am what I’ve done or what they think of me. I’ve never wanted to be famous, just infamous! What has been your biggest problem when it comes to family or friends when writing?

NB: The race to the mailbox when the advance and royalty checks arrived! We were knocking each other down!

LH: I have never experienced writers block…I have experienced writers “don’t want to”… Have you ever experienced writers block and if so, how did you overcome it?

NB: I think I may hold the record for writer’s block. I had a bout that lasted seven years! 

As for overcoming it…I’d given up. I was resigned to the possibility that I might never write again. Then, out of the blue, came the idea that became Chasing the Wind.

LH: I get asked all the time “Do you have any advice for new writers?”… Do you?

NB: Yep. Read. Read a lot. Learn from your favorite authors. Forget about creative writing courses unless you like to throw money away.

LH: I would not change one thing in my life as I would not be me if I did… If you could go back in time and change one thing in your life, what would it be?

NB: I’d try not to make so many stupid mistakes. Maybe not be so quick to lose my temper. Learn to ignore idiots….

LH: If I could go back in time and tell someone something, I’d go back and tell the founding fathers they were doing a few things wrong…If you could go back in time and tell someone something, who would you tell and what would you tell them?

NB: I might tell JFK not to go to Dallas. Or the crews of the Challenger and Columbia not to get on those shuttles….

LH: I would freak out if someone contacted me and said they wanted to make one of my books or my series of book into a movie as I am really very shy in person and I’d probably go into hiding. I don’t think I could handle it. How would you handle it? Who would be the first person you told?

NB: I’ve been in that position twice. I was thrilled! The first time around, I told my mother. The second time, I told my son. But lots of projects get optioned and never get filmed, so the movies have yet to be made. Maybe one day….

Thanks for that hysterical and intimate interview NB…Now… for the fun stuff!

Favorite Beverage? Banana smoothie!

Exercise or Bubble Bath? I’m a shower person, so I guess I’ll have to choose exercise….

Favorite Color? Yellow…bright yellow, none of that pastel crap!

Take out or Dine in? Take Out…with a DVD!

Camping or Hotel? Hotel—with room service!

Sports or Chocolate? No contest—CHOCOLATE!!!!!!

Dogs or Cats? Birds!

Favorite Food? Depends on my mood. At the moment, tacos or pizza!

Favorite Song? Walk on Water by Blue County

Favorite Movie? The Avengers!

Favorite Car? MiniCooper

Sex or Chocolate? (The answer “Both” is totally acceptable 😉 Oh, good—both!

And now for the essay part of the interview 😉

If you could go anywhere for a week, with anyone you wanted and no one would ever find out about it…where would you go, what would you do and who would you take?

NB: If I tell you, people will find out!

Thank you for spending this time with us. Make sure you pick up your copies of Norma Beishir, Toni Collins and Scarlett Martin’s work 

at

http://www.amazon.com/Norma-Beishir/e/B002BMF4CO/ref=sr_tc_ep?qid=1307984690

http://www.smashwords.com/books/search?query=Norma+Beishir

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Today’s Tease…Lorrie Farrelly

Welcome! Pull up a seat and enjoy a chat with Today’s Tease Lorrie Farrelly

Your Name or Pen Name you use:  Lorrie Farrelly

Title of the book you are promoting:  THE GUARDIAN’S ANGEL

 Link to purchase your Book:

Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/The-Guardians-Angel-ebook/dp/B0053GBAZU/ref=sr_1_5_title_1_kin?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1376246260&sr=1-5

Author website: https://sites.google.com/site/yourbestreads

Genre:  Contemporary, paranormal, romantic suspense.  (Telepathy, not vampires, zombies, or werewolves.)

Blurb:   When nobody knows what to do with a troubled, damaged kid, it’s time to call Elizabeth Driscoll. A wary, vulnerable, unusually intuitive young woman, Libby has a knack for helping children others have given up on.

Certainly nobody knows what to do with Tommy Madden, least of all his fiercely devoted guardian, Seattle Police Detective J.D. McCammon. McCammon believes the autistic little boy witnessed a double murder: his mother and his father, the city’s District Attorney. J.D. is determined to help and protect Tommy at all costs, and somehow, find a way to communicate with him.

When Tommy’s life is threatened by the corrupt organization that killed his parents, J.D. and Libby take him on a desperate and dangerous flight to safety. They must place their trust in one another to escape a relentless evil that threatens not only their lives, but also that of the child they’ve both come to love.

On the run, Libby and J.D. are tested to the limits of their courage and resolve. They discover an intimate and mystifying bond that will either drive them apart, or become their greatest source of strength and passion.

Excerpt:

C’mon, either ID the sorry SOB or give it up. I’m freakin’ dead on my feet here.

At the snarled words, Libby Driscoll jumped back as though from a blow. Her pulse raced as a deep voice, gravelly and drawling with fatigue, growled angrily at her. She clutched a hand to her heart as though to keep it from pounding out of her chest.

“They can see me!”

The young, uniformed policewoman standing beside Libby shot a worried glance to the rumpled detective on the other side of the small observation room. He shrugged and rolled his eyes with a resigned Gonna be a lonnngg day expression, then slouched resignedly back against the wall.

The officer, a metallic nameplate reading Alcaraz, C. pinned squarely above her shirt pocket, frowned in concern. She reached out and placed a reassuring hand on the trembling woman’s shoulder.

“No, it’s okay,” Christina Alcaraz said gently. “Don’t be afraid. They can’t see you in here, Ms. Driscoll. That’s one-way glass. I know this is hard for you. It’s scary, and it’s easy to imagine they’re looking right at us, but they really aren’t. Don’t worry, you’re safe in here with Detective Hirsch and me.”

She patted Libby’s shoulder encouragingly. “Just relax, ma’am, and when you’re ready, go ahead and take another look.”

The witness, who at twenty-three looked barely out of her teens, turned distracted, wild blue eyes toward her, and Christina knew there was no way she was going to “relax.” The young cop felt a churning wave of pity and anger.

Three times she’d seen the sickening handiwork of the vicious psychopath the newspapers were calling the University Park Stalker, and so far the police had very little in the way of evidence. He struck fast, kept to the darkness, gave his victims no chance to escape. Elizabeth Driscoll was his third victim, but unlike the first two, assaulted after dark near the south end of the park, she’d been attacked in early morning drizzle while jogging along the deserted Arboretum road.

The Stalker had grown bolder, chancing daylight, gray and bleak though it was.

That single mistake saved Libby Driscoll’s life.

He’d taken her completely by surprise. Launching himself at her from behind, he struck her viciously to the ground. Libby had cried out in shock, at first too stunned to feel the jarring contact of body with pavement. The fall had badly bruised her face, torn the skin on palms and knees and snapped her wrist, but all she’d felt was the massive impact of the man’s body, crushing the air from her lungs and cutting off her cry.

For endless, terrifying moments he’d breathed heavy, fetid air into her ear, ground his hips against her, and, quick as a striking viper, snapped a ligature around her throat. She’d struggled furiously, desperately, but he’d been too strong. As Libby’s life began to slip away in a choked, oily black haze, the Stalker had been surprised in his work by the sudden appearance of a police cruiser in the gray, foggy drizzle.

He’d scrambled up, bolted back into the shelter of trees half-shrouded in dripping mist, and Libby Driscoll – though semi-conscious, bruised, and bloodied – was alive.

A week later, the police informed her a suspect was in custody, and now Libby stood shakily in the observation room. Despite the presence of the officer and detective, she felt desperately alone and terrifyingly exposed.

Once again Christina patted Libby’s shoulder. The cop’s serious, compassionate brown eyes met and held Libby’s distraught blue ones, and gradually the young victim’s panic eased.

Libby blinked hard, willing herself to calm down. Her fingers, curled over the end of her cast almost as a fist, relaxed with visible effort. The wrist throbbed dully, like a relentless toothache, and she cradled it close to her body.

“I–I’m sorry,” she stammered, her voice still hoarse from the injury to her throat. “I don’t know what … there was … I was sure I heard one of those men’s voice. I guess maybe I’m still more shaken up than I thought.”

Christina smiled gently.

“It’s okay. Just take all the time you need, Ms. Driscoll. I know this is tough for you, but believe me, like I said, none of the suspects can see or hear you in here. You’re completely hidden from them. They can only see their own reflections on the other side, like in a regular mirror.”

She paused, waiting patiently, as Libby still looked unnerved. Christina ignored Hirsch’s long-suffering sigh.

“We’ll go slowly, Ms. Driscoll, one man at a time,” she said. “Take a deep breath, take your time, look at each suspect carefully, tell me if you recognize any of them.”

Shivering slightly beneath the officer’s steadying touch, Libby tried to control the trembling of her hands and the sudden need to swipe at the short, damp, sticky auburn curls that clung to her face and neck.

Though sweating, she was cold to the bone.*

*copyright by Lorrie Farrelly

Welcome  LF…I, LH have some questions for you 😉

LH: I wanted to be a ballerina, race car driver and a private detective when I was little. What did you want to be when you grew up?

LF: Oh, that’s easy. A veterinarian. Then I found out you needed 8 years of college science, and you did not just pet kittens or ride horses all day. Sigh.

LH: I didn’t really have a literary influence, I just decided one day to start writing. Who influenced you in your writing career?

LF: I’ve been an avid reader all my life, but I think I was most influenced by Harper Lee, Stephen King, Dean Koontz, Nora Roberts, Elizabeth Lowell, and Linda Howard. I was also a Lit major in college, which definitely helped!

LH: I self published all of my books and was then “discovered” by a publisher. Are you an Indie or published author?

LF: Indie. After two (which was two too many) bad experiences with editors/publishers, I decided to manage my own career. One editor couldn’t understand what “the Civil War had to do with the West,” and another wanted me to make a sociopathic character “nicer.” It’s not that I don’t appreciate constructive criticism, but seriously? Although marketing and promotion do not come naturally to me, I’m delighted to have the rights to my own novels.

LH: As an Indie Author, I was hesitant about being with a publishing company. If you are an Indie author, would you like to be published by a traditional publisher and if so, why or why not?

LF: Truthfully, at this point, probably not. My books are already in ebook and paperback format, and three are audiobooks as well. I make a greater percentage of profit than I would through a publishing company, and my books have a much longer “shelf life.” I’m sure there are promotional benefits with a traditional publisher, but I’m much happier as an independent author.

LH: This is easy for me…I’d invite Johnny Depp and I would not discuss movies! Who would you invite to dinner, living or dead, and what one topic would you NOT discuss with them?

LF: I’d invite Abe Lincoln. I’d want him to know how grateful we are to him to this day, and that he was remembered with honor. But I’d steer clear of asking him if he’d seen any good shows lately.

LH: I personally think that there is way too much sex and violence everywhere in society these days and it’s everywhere but that Hollywood is one of the biggest contributors.  Do you think that society as a whole is subjected to too much sex and violence and are you concerned about it? Ever feel conflicted and if so, why?

LF: I am uncomfortable with gratuitous, exploitative levels of sex and violence, because they deaden feeling rather than heightening it. When they are integral to a story, however, and come from real emotion or real peril, they intensify that story and stimulate the imagination.

Unfortunately, we are bombarded by 24/7 media that is always tuned to the sensational and the horrific. It’s important to teach our children what is real and what is right to do, because there’s really no way to avoid that bombardment in our daily lives.

On the other hand, there is some wonderful entertainment and access to knowledge also available 24/7, which is a great thing.

LH: I’m a huge softy and by no means a beauty queen… lol but, I truly would want world peace in the blink of an eye if I could make it happen…If you could change one thing in the world, in the blink of an eye, what would it be?

LF: I’m with you, and I’d throw in an end to hunger and cruelty.

LH: With the traditional bookstore becoming obsolete and everyone turning to buying books online, I don’t buy the hype that “the cover is everything”. How important do you think book covers are now that almost all shopping is done online?

LF: Actually, I think covers are very important. Along with the title, they draw the reader’s initial attention to the book. If those two things intrigue a reader, he or she is likely to be interested enough to read the blurb and, I hope, buy the book.

I’ve always resisted being pushed into a mold, and I feel the same way about my writing and the presentation of my books. TIMELAPSE is the only one of my novels to have people on the cover, and they are shown only in silhouette. I use the covers of my books to convey setting and mood. I like to see characters in my imagination, and these days, when so many books have the same models on the covers, it’s a bit unnerving. Apparently there’s been a lot of cloning going on throughout history!

LH: I can remember wanting to write as a kid. I got a really late start! Have you always wanted to write and when did you start?

LF: I always wrote – I can remember as a young child writing short little books for my dolls to “read.” I didn’t think about writing for publication, though, until the last few years. I had written some TV scripts but found that frustrating, as often the show was cancelled before a script got a chance to be used. I thought about the kind of books I enjoyed reading: books with good plots, maybe some twists or surprises, some paranormal elements, and lots of emotion, suspense, and romance.  And I realized I could do more than read them; I could write them. And I would strive to take readers on riveting emotional adventures that are fast-paced, suspenseful, and passionate.

LH: I love to see if I can see myself in a character. What interests you most about a story?

LF: I want to respond emotionally to characters, to be pulled into their lives and care about what happens to them. I love it when a story grabs me on the first page and doesn’t let go, but I’m also willing to let a story grow on me if the characters are vividly drawn and the plot is intriguing.

LH: For me, I just get hit with this whole movie in my head and start writing. How do you come up with your stories?

LF: I’m the author of six published novels. TERMS OF SURRENDER, a post-Civil War, Western historical romance, is based on some old family papers I found – my great-grandfather’s Parole and Oath of Allegiance to the USA following the War Between the States. He was allowed to go home after the Surrender only if he agreed never again to bear arms against the Union. I was curious to know why a good man would fight for a new country based on terrible injustice, and what would have been in his heart following defeat and great personal loss. Would he ever find peace again?

This book became the first of a trilogy of novels following the same family from the 1860s through the early 20th century. The succeeding books are TERMS OF ENGAGEMENT and TERMS OF TEMPTATION.  I’ve also written two contemporary romantic suspense novels – DANGEROUS and THE GUARDIAN’S ANGEL – and a romantic time-travel/alternate universe adventure, TIMELAPSE.

All my books have at least a touch – and sometimes much more – of the paranormal. (Not werewolves, zombies, or vampires, but rather such things as time-travel, telepathy, and angels.)

My favorite movies and TV shows have always been adventures, Westerns, or spooky stuff. I’ve probably seen every Twilight Zone episode about 20 times. (I can even do the dialogue:  “TO SERVE MAN – it’s a cookbook!!!!!”)  I love a good scare, but of the Jaws, Jurassic Park, Blair Witch, or Paranormal Activity kind – not the Saw-type splatter porn. And there’s nothing so uniquely American as Westerns. Who wouldn’t want to climb aboard a Stagecoach, Dance with Wolves, or holler after Shane to come back?

I often get the idea for a story when some actual incident captures my imagination, such as finding the Civil War papers. Another time, I saw a news story about Highway Patrol officers who delivered a fawn beside the freeway after the mother had been hit by a car and mortally injured. That incident inspired an early scene in DANGEROUS.

LH: I can’t tell you or I’d have to…lol Are you working on anything now?

LF: I just released TERMS OF TEMPTATION this spring, so I’m just starting a new story now. This one will be about a young lady who badly needs a second chance in life.

LH: I’m working on #6…3 are published and the other 3 are due out this year… How many books have you written? How many have been published?

LF: (See answer above.)

LH: I write for fun I don’t even dream of riches…Do you write for fun or money?

LF: Of course I’m thrilled when my books sell well, but I write because I have some wonderful stories to share. When readers tell me a book of mine made them laugh, made their pulses race, or moved them to tears, well, that’s the best payoff!

LH: Some of my family members had a bit of a problem with me writing my first book “A Beautiful Liar” because the character Maggie West is basically me…to a point 😉 They had a problem with the genre and me “putting it all out there” so to speak so I took a pen name. They eventually came around as I have never cared who knows who I am what I’ve done or what they think of me. I’ve never wanted to be famous, just infamous! What has been your biggest problem when it comes to family or friends when writing?

LF: I’ve been so lucky – my family and friends have been incredibly supportive. Of course, it could be that they’re simply awed by the sheer glamour of an unshowered author typing away in pajamas and sweat socks at the kitchen table at three in the afternoon. 😀

LH: I have never experienced writers block…I have experienced writers “don’t want to”… Have you ever experienced writers block and if so, how did you overcome it?

LF: I think every author has felt blocked at one time or another. I’ve learned to be patient. Sometimes I’ll start with one idea, only to have it go nowhere. Other times, a seemingly hopelessly stalled story breaks free with one simple change. For example, at one point I was really stuck with TERMS OF ENGAGEMENT; it just wouldn’t come together. Then I realized my main character wasn’t a marshal, he was a doctor. With that change, the whole story blossomed!

LH: I get asked all the time “Do you have any advice for new writers?”… Do you?

LF: It’s wonderful to have a great story, but you have to tell it well. Make sure you know the rules of grammar, spelling, and punctuation. And above all, READ! The more you read, the better feel you have for communication and the flow of language. Honestly, the best thing a writer can do is read.

LH: I would not change one thing in my life as I would not be me if I did… If you could go back in time and change one thing in your life, what would it be?

LF: I’d have been more patient with my mother. I was a later-in-life baby – Mom thought at first I was a symptom of menopause! But as a consequence, I was working full time and taking care of my own kids as she grew older, and I know I could have been a better daughter to her. I realize now that we can never have today back again, and we must make the most of it, especially with those we love.

LH: If I could go back in time and tell someone something, I’d go back and tell the founding fathers they were doing a few things wrong…If you could go back in time and tell someone something, who would you tell and what would you tell them?

LF: Well, at one time I’d have chosen to go back and warn the Kennedys and Dr. King, but then I read Stephen King’s 11/22/63. Now going back doesn’t seem like such a good idea! (BTW, that’s exactly what characters have to deal with in my novel TIMELAPSE. How can you be sure that what you’re changing in the past will lead to a better future, rather than a worse one?)

LH: I would freak out if someone contacted me and said they wanted to make one of my books or my series of book into a movie as I am really very shy in person and I’d probably go into hiding. I don’t think I could handle it. How would you handle it? Who would be the first person you told?

LF: Oh, I’d be thrilled, although I imagine it can also be a very stressful experience. And of course, I’d tell my husband first. He’s my head cheerleader and very best friend!

Thank you for that insightful and interesting interview LF…Now… for the fun stuff!

Favorite Beverage? Yeah, I admit it. I’m a Diet Pepsiholic.

Exercise or Bubble Bath? Both, please! I’ll take the extra time from something else, like laundry or dishwashing.

Favorite Color? Blue.

Take out or Dine in? Pizza? Take out.  Mexican or Japanese? Dine in. Chinese? Either way, baby!

Camping or Hotel? Hotel, hotel, and hotel. Did I mention hotel?

Sports or Chocolate? Chocolate. Sorry, nothing has a chance against chocolate!

Dogs or Cats? We have both and I love them all, but at heart, I’m probably a cat person.

Favorite Food? Very hard to choose, since with the exception of bell peppers, Brussels sprouts, and calamari, I never met a food I didn’t like!

Favorite Song? Currently it’s a little Scottish folk song called “The Weavers,” because it puts the baby to sleep. Every time. It’s magical!  (“If it wasna fer the weavers, wha’ will ye do? Ye willna hae a cloth tha’s made o’ wool…” Instant snore!)

Favorite Movie? A 3-way tie: Jaws, The Empire Strikes Back, and Raiders of the Lost Ark. As you can see, I frequent only the most esoteric of art house cinemas.

Favorite Car? Any one that has reliable air conditioning, stereo sound, and enough seats to separate kids and prevent the “He touched me!”/“He’s looking at me!” routine.

Sex or Chocolate? Is there any answer besides Both?!

And now for the essay part of the interview 😉

If you could go anywhere for a week, with anyone you wanted and no one would ever find out about it…where would you go, what would you do and who would you take?

LF: I’d love to go on a dinosaur dig! I know, it sounds ridiculous for someone who hates camping, but my dream dinosaur dig would, naturally, finish out each day at an extravagantly, fabulously deluxe mountain resort. And since it wouldn’t be fun for me without family and friends, we’ll all go!

Thank you for spending this time with us. Make sure to pick up your copy of Lorrie Farrelly’s

THE GUARDIAN’S ANGEL

at

http://www.amazon.com/The-Guardians-Angel-Lorrie-Farrelly/dp/1469953560/ref=sr_1_5?ie=UTF8&qid=1376408773&sr=8-5&keywords=Lorrie+Farrelly

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Today’s Tease…Norma Beishir, Toni Collins and Scarlett Martin!

Welcome! Pull up a seat and enjoy a chat with Today’s Tease Norma Beishir, Toni Collins and Scarlett Martin! 

Your Name or Pen Name you use:  Norma Beishir…but I’m also known as Toni Collins and Scarlett Martin!

Title of the book you are promoting:  I don’t have a new book out yet, so for now I’m promoting my self-pubbed titles—two originals and three ebook editions of previously published novels.

Link to purchase your Book: 

http://www.amazon.com/Norma-Beishir/e/B002BMF4CO/ref=sr_tc_ep?qid=1307984690

http://www.smashwords.com/books/search?query=Norma+Beishir

Genre:  supernatural romance, romantic suspense, and romantic comedy.

Welcome NB….I, LH have some questions for you 😉

LH: I wanted to be a ballerina, race car driver and a private detective when I was little. What did you want to be when you grew up?

NB: I can’t remember ever wanting to be anything but a writer. Oh, wait a minute. I did go through a period during which I wanted to be a jockey. My favorite movie when I was a kid was National Velvet. I wanted to do what Elizabeth Taylor’s character had done in the movie…but as good a rider as I was, being a writer was a more realistic ambition!

LH: I didn’t really have a literary influence, I just decided one day to start writing. Who influenced you in your writing career?

NB: Influences? My mother, for one. She always wanted to write. She didn’t actively pursue it, but she gave me the bug. Another influence was my junior high English teacher. She encouraged me. 

As for literary influences—E.B.White was the first. I fell in love with Charlotte’s Web in the third grade and read it over and over and over. I loved that book! Later, the most important influences were Jacqueline Susann and Sidney Sheldon. I think I learned more about writing from reading Sheldon than I did from any other author.

LH: I self published all of my books and was then “discovered” by a publisher. Are you an Indie or published author?

NB: Indie! My first fourteen novels were published by traditional Big Six publishers, and I’ll be the first to say that I was very fortunate to have been published by both of them. Berkley not only bought my first novel, they bought two more on proposal for a six-figure advance before I’d even finished the first. Never in my wildest dreams did I really believe that would happen!

They published my books as lead titles—second position on their lists, usually behind Robin Cook or Dame Brown, a very nice place to be for a newbie like me. They promoted the books, advertised them in major publications, and supported my career in every way. 

But there’s always a downside. I was not being allowed to do books I really wanted to do. I’ll never forget the day my agent told me one of my projects had been rejected because it “wasn’t glamorous.” That was when I knew I had a big problem. Anyone who knows me will tell you I’m not into glamour. I’m a jeans and T-shirts gal.  I wouldn’t even wear shoes if I could get away with it. I don’t know Donna Karan from Kmart!

LH: As an Indie Author, I was hesitant about being with a publishing company. If you are an Indie author, would you like to be published by a traditional publisher and if so, why or why not?

NB: Been there, done that—and the answer is no. I’d never go back.  Why not? I can sum it up in two words: creative freedom. Now I do whatever I want.

When I was younger, I was all about the money and the bestseller lists. Now, all that matters to me is being able to make a living writing the books I really want to write.

LH: This is easy for me…I’d invite Johnny Depp and I would not discuss movies!  Who would you invite to dinner, living or dead, and what one topic would you NOT discuss with them?

NB: Johnny Depp—that would be interesting! Wow…I’d have to think about this one for a minute. My first thought is to say Jesus Christ. Invite Jesus to dinner but don’t discuss religion—right!

That would be like inviting Joss Whedon to dinner and not discussing The Avengers or Firefly.  Or Mark Zuckerberg and not asking why Facebook’s such a screwed-up mess.

I know…I’d invite Noah and never once mention the weather forecast!

LH: I personally think that there is way too much sex and violence everywhere in society these days and it’s everywhere but that Hollywood is one of the biggest contributors.  Do you think that society as a whole is subjected to too much sex and violence and are you concerned about it? Ever feel conflicted and if so, why?

NB: I do. I feel conflicted when I have to use violence in a scene I’m writing. I’m very uncomfortable with violence, to the point that sometimes, when I’m watching on TV, I’ll turn the channel. I don’t like plots involving serial killers, things like that. I don’t like to watch anything involving rape, no BDSM, none of that.

It’s funny…I used to enjoy movies with a lot of sex. Now, not so much. Maybe it’s because I’m getting old. Seriously. I’ll be sixty in August. That’s pretty old.

LH: I’m a huge softy and by no means a beauty queen… lol but, I truly would want world peace in the blink of an eye if I could make it happen…If you could change one thing in the world, in the blink of an eye, what would it be?

NB: Just one thing? Okay, that would have to be drugs. Rid the world of drugs. That’s where the sickest crimes come from—drug-addled minds.

LH: With the traditional bookstore becoming obsolete and everyone turning to buying books online, I don’t buy the hype that “the cover is everything”. How important do you think book covers are now that almost all shopping is done online?

NB: I do—I suppose because I still pay attention to them. But then, I’m like a crow with shiny things. I have a thing for color—I’m drawn to bright, vivid colors. A good cover design with bold colors catches my eye every time! That’s what a book cover does for me—it catches my eye. But from that point on, the book itself has to hold my attention.

LH: I can remember wanting to write as a kid. I got a really late start! Have you always wanted to write and when did you start?

NB: Early—eight or nine. I was always in trouble in school for writing stories when I should have been paying attention in class (or at least they kept telling me I should have been paying attention….)

LH: I love to see if I can see myself in a character. What interests you most about a story?

NB: When I started out, it was the plot. One editor used to call me the Master Plotter. Now, I’m more interested in character.

LH: For me, I just get hit with this whole movie in my head and start writing. How do you come up with your stories?

NB: I usually get my ideas from real life events. For example, Alexander’s Empire was inspired by a news story out of Italy in the early ’80s. A little boy had fallen into a well. For days, attempts were made to rescue him—but he died there. As the mother of a toddler, I was deeply affected by the story. I started to wonder—what if he had survived somehow? What if he had ended up in an underground cave and was rescued without his parents’ knowledge and grew up as someone else’s child—but was troubled by dreams of his past life? That’s how most of my stories begin.

LH: I can’t tell you or I’d have to…lol Are you working on anything now?

NB: Yes! I’ve been moving in a whole new direction for while now. My current work in progress, Superhero in Training, is about an aspiring comic book writer who creates a superhero identity that takes on a life of its own in a quirky Midwestern college town.

I’m also almost finished with a collaborative effort with James Morgan (aka William Kendall), Same Time Tomorrow, about a couple who meet and fall in love online.  And no, it’s not autobiographical!  

LH: I’m working on #6…3 are published and the other 3 are due out this year… How many books have you written? How many have been published?

NB: I’ve lost track of how many I’ve written—but sixteen of them are published and with luck, three more will be published within the coming year.

LH: I write for fun I don’t even dream of riches…Do you write for fun or money?

I’m trying to remember who said, “Writing is like prostitution. First you do it for love, then you do it for a few friends, and finally you do it for money.” I was backward. First I did it for money. Now I do it for love.

LH: Some of my family members had a bit of a problem with me writing my first book “A Beautiful Liar” because the character Maggie West is basically me…to a point 😉 They had a problem with the genre and me “putting it all out there” so to speak so I took a pen name. They eventually came around as I have never cared who knows who I am what I’ve done or what they think of me. I’ve never wanted to be famous, just infamous! What has been your biggest problem when it comes to family or friends when writing?

NB: The race to the mailbox when the advance and royalty checks arrived! We were knocking each other down!

LH: I have never experienced writers block…I have experienced writers “don’t want to”… Have you ever experienced writers block and if so, how did you overcome it?

NB: I think I may hold the record for writer’s block. I had a bout that lasted seven years! 

As for overcoming it…I’d given up. I was resigned to the possibility that I might never write again. Then, out of the blue, came the idea that became Chasing the Wind.

LH: I get asked all the time “Do you have any advice for new writers?”… Do you?

NB: Yep. Read. Read a lot. Learn from your favorite authors. Forget about creative writing courses unless you like to throw money away.

LH: I would not change one thing in my life as I would not be me if I did… If you could go back in time and change one thing in your life, what would it be?

NB: I’d try not to make so many stupid mistakes. Maybe not be so quick to lose my temper. Learn to ignore idiots….

LH: If I could go back in time and tell someone something, I’d go back and tell the founding fathers they were doing a few things wrong…If you could go back in time and tell someone something, who would you tell and what would you tell them?

NB: I might tell JFK not to go to Dallas. Or the crews of the Challenger and Columbia not to get on those shuttles….

LH: I would freak out if someone contacted me and said they wanted to make one of my books or my series of book into a movie as I am really very shy in person and I’d probably go into hiding. I don’t think I could handle it. How would you handle it? Who would be the first person you told?

NB: I’ve been in that position twice. I was thrilled! The first time around, I told my mother. The second time, I told my son. But lots of projects get optioned and never get filmed, so the movies have yet to be made. Maybe one day….

Thanks for that hysterical and intimate interview NB…Now… for the fun stuff!

Favorite Beverage? Banana smoothie!

Exercise or Bubble Bath? I’m a shower person, so I guess I’ll have to choose exercise….

Favorite Color? Yellow…bright yellow, none of that pastel crap!

Take out or Dine in? Take Out…with a DVD!

Camping or Hotel? Hotel—with room service!

Sports or Chocolate? No contest—CHOCOLATE!!!!!!

Dogs or Cats? Birds!

Favorite Food? Depends on my mood. At the moment, tacos or pizza!

Favorite Song? Walk on Water by Blue County

Favorite Movie? The Avengers!

Favorite Car? MiniCooper

Sex or Chocolate? (The answer “Both” is totally acceptable 😉 Oh, good—both!

And now for the essay part of the interview 😉

If you could go anywhere for a week, with anyone you wanted and no one would ever find out about it…where would you go, what would you do and who would you take?

NB: If I tell you, people will find out!

Thank you for spending this time with us. Make sure you pick up your copies of Norma Beishir, Toni Collins and Scarlett Martin work 

at

http://www.amazon.com/Norma-Beishir/e/B002BMF4CO/ref=sr_tc_ep?qid=1307984690

http://www.smashwords.com/books/search?query=Norma+Beishir

Cover Collage

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