Tell us about yourself and how many books you have written.
I'm a lover of words, all words. I'm fascinated by the sounds, shapes, lengths, meaning, and how words can paint a picture. My grandfather and Father were storytellers who could keep an audience enchanted for hours. I want to do the same, telling my stories in my way.
I'm hopeless, helplessly addicted to coffee and chocolate, the darker the better. And British actors in general. I also freely admit to binge watching Doctor Who (the 11th Doctor is *my* Doctor…or, wait, maybe 10th is…I love them both!) and Sherlock (brainy geek IS the new sexy). I give these addictions to several heroines in the "Weddings' series.
I've written nine books to date, most of them in the 'Weddings by C & C' series. And if you don't count all the 'books' I wrote long hand on notebook paper as a kid.
What is the name of your latest book and what inspired it?
The latest book is called 'Take on me', Book 4 in the 'Weddings by C & C' series. It was inspired by a famous British actor, and my close and good friend's mega fangirl crush on him. As fans, we often don't see the 'other side' of stardom: being hounded by the media and living in a glass house. My heroine in 'Take on Me' discovers the other side of fandom, and its consequences on a relationship and your life.
Do you have any unusual writing habits?
I love to write by candlelight, even with the sun high in the sky. the scent somehow helps me focus and better hear what a character wants me to say for his/her story. I also need 'white noise' sometimes, like telly shows of Home Improvement and the Wedding Shows. Sometimes I need beat driven Jazz. Sometimes it's 80's classics from MTV channel. And sometimes I need the relatively quiet of my house, with cars going by, phones ringing, and the sound of birds. And my own muttering.
What authors, or books have influenced you?
This is tough, because there are so many! One of the earliest ones would be 'Taming of the Shew' from Shakespeare, because I adored the old language (much to my classmates puzzlement). Definitely 'The Stand' by Stephen King because it's huge and I couldn't put it down (I loved Fran & Stew's story). 'The Heart of Devin MacCade' by Nora Roberts because the heroine was very much going through what I was at the time, and that book helped me be strong even when I didn't want to be.
What are you working on now?
Currently I'm working on 'The Write One' which is Book 7 in the 'Weddings' series and has a heroine very close to my heart and modeled on a dear former Royal Air Force Friend. And I'm trying my best to ignore several other characters who are demanding their stories also be told and giving me 'tidbits' I scribble on notepaper and tuck away.
What is your best method or website when it comes to promoting your books?
I think promotion is as individual to each author as there are authors. I love to interact on Face Book, and post videos that inspire. I like the Goodreads contests to test yourself about how many books to read in a year. Amazon is so visual, and we all like to shop online (I do, because I can shop in my comfy clothes and slippers, and not have to be fully dressed and wear a bra). Twitter is great for short, fast 'reminders'. And my blog, which I need to pay more attention to, is also a great place for my friend authors to share their latest, so I adore that.
Do you have any advice for new authors?
Always write something every day. You've heard that before and it's true. Even if it sounds 'stupid' or 'stinks', write it. Tuck it away. Save it in an online file. But never stop writing. Being an author is a gift. It's a talent, and you should never waste the talent you have.
What is the best advice you have ever heard?
'For some of us writing will always be only a hobby'. That spurred me to be more serious to the 'business' side of writing. I don't make a living with my books and writing (YET) but it's also never, ever, been 'just a hobby' to me. It may not pay the bills, but writing is every bit a part of my as my red hair and brown eyes, and those lousy last 10 pounds I can't lose no matter what I do. So I will keep writing even if I don't hit a 'Top Ten' list somewhere. It's more important to me to be true to myself, and writing is a huge part of that.
What are you reading now?
A lot of things! I read according to what I'm doing, which may sound weird but helps me.
For the professional 'day' job that pays the bills: 'A Child Called It'. And it's breaking my heart.
While on the treadmill pounding away, 'The Crypt' by Jonas Saul. I have books I only read while marching away, and that helps motivate to exercise. So I save the thrillers, horror, and crime dramas for the treadmill.
For fun: Samantha Holt's 'To Steal a Highlander's heart'. I read this while in the car pool line. And it keeps me from muttering at people cutting in and not obeying the road signs.
In the bathtub: Roz Lee's 'Free Agent'. Mega mega hot. I take a cold shower after some chapters.
And before bed: 'When I see Your Face' by Devika Fernando. Sweet, fun, and light, to give me sweet dreams.
I have 412 e books loaded. And 67 'dead tree' books in a pile in the corner. I have a lot to catch up on!
What’s next for you as a writer?
This year I will see the release of books 4,5 & 6 in the "Weddings by C & C series. That's 'Take on me', 'Let Me Know' and 'When You Believe'.
THEN…I have to finish writing books 7, 8, & 9 in the series, which are 'The Write One', 'Stuck on You', and currently untitled.
Several new blog posts, to update and keep readers current. A novella, too, for the Christmas edition of 'Weddings' by C & C'.
I have much to do, huh?
What is your favorite book of all time?
Ugg! Ask me which child is my favorite! That might be easier. So…hmmm… probably anything by Edgar Allen Poe…'The Stand' by Stephen King, 'Survivor in Death' by JD Robb, Sherlock Holmes, the Harry Potter series, and 'Hopeless' by Colleen Hoover.