Friday, November 30, 2012

Celebrate Our Sensational Second!!


It's December 1st, 2010 and seven debut authors got together to plunge into the blogosphere, creating a special place to share their favorite books. We've added three additional debuters in 2012 to become a strong crew of ten. Numerous guest authors, hundreds of give-aways, RITA award features and our own continued releases have kept us plenty busy. 

We're authors. From sexy historicals to dystopian young adult reads to contemporary or Victorian romantic suspense. Texas cowboys, Scotland Yard detectives, southern belles, ghosts, tour guides, rock stars and billionaires, all around the world or our own backyards... Stories for every reader. And if we don't write it, we'll find someone who does.

For readers. That's what makes Get Lost In A Story different. We're a readers' blog and concentrate on the stories and what makes a writer who they are. Who doesn't want to know what's in an author's refrigerator? (I'd tell you what's in mine...but I'll save that for another day.) If you miss an interview, well, you're in luck since all our guests are listed in the right hand column. And let me tell you, if you missed Jillian's feature on men in kilts yesterday, well, it's just one click away. 


WE PROMISED SOME FUN !

and lots of giveaways

To celebrate our second anniversary and get a jump-start on our third year, we're taking you on a treasure hunt across our websites to find hidden (or not so hidden) objects. Once found, just copy the url into the Rafflecopter box and you're entered. Send a tweet...and you're entered. Like our page on Facebook...and you're entered. Follow us on Twitter and you're entered. Tweet us again Saturday and Sunday...and you're entered. The list of websites and objects to look for are just below. Drawings will be held Monday, December 3rd.

THANKS for visiting and joining in our fun. If you have a favorite author you'd like to see featured, give us their name: leave a comment or send an email to GetLostInAStory@gmail.com.  Good Hunting!


LOOK FOR THESE THINGS ON THE WEBSITES

JILLIAN: SPY CAMERA

DONNELL: A PICTURE of DONNELL & ANGI
ANGI: CRYSTAL NECKLACE
ALEXA: NANO WEB BADGES
MAUREEN: MAUREEN'S FRENCH PUBLISHER (one of)
LIZBETH: PICTURE OF A MOOSE
CAT: HER SECRET MILLIONAIRE
SUSAN: TROY CAUSBY'S OCCUPATION
SIMONE: A PICTURE OF SARAH
HEATHER: LILIANA'S LOVE LETTER TO GEOFFREY


PRIZES
Will be awarded in the same order the winners are chosen
 
Angi -- signed copy of DANGEROUS MEMORIES
Angi -- Winner's choice from my TBR pile
Jillian -- signed copy of latest release: A PRIVATE DUEL WITH AGENT GUNN or reader's choice of one of the Gentlemen of Scotland Yard books.
Alexa -- Winner's choice of a book from my TBR pile
Alexa -- Winner's choice of a book from my TBR pile
Alexa -- Winner's choice of a book from my TBR pile 
Donnell -- A signed copy or digital copy of THE PAST CAME HUNTING
Simone -- A Kindle copy of Maureen's DEVIANTS
Lizbeth -- signed copy of THE RANCHER AND THE ROCK STAR
Lizbeth -- RANCHER & ROCK STAR collector's mug and goodies
Susan -- One ebook, Winner’s choice, from Amazon or B&N, up to $15 value
Maureen -- One signed hardcover copy of DEVIANTS plus a totebag and other goodies



a Rafflecopter giveaway

Thursday, November 29, 2012

This Blog is All About Men in Kilts!




The Great Kilt

Have you ever wondered about the origins of the kilt? Especially how the tartan was folded and worn? I think the demo takes place in the great hall of the Royal Palace, Edinburgh Castle. If you have the time, this is entertaining and informative.



Formal Kilt w/Bow Tie

The kilt ensemble most often seen at weddings or other formal affairs.



Modern Prince Charlie Style Kilt

Another popular look for weddings and formal receptions. Needless to say there are a number of accessories that accompany the wearing of a kilt. The sporran, hose and flash, neckties and sashes, Ghillie Brogues, Spats, and of course the Sgian Dubhs (dagger) which is slipped under the hose cuff.

Formal kilt looks by MacGregor MacDuff



Drummer Kilt

Piper's or Drummer's Doublet Jacket. Check out those epaulettes!




 Modern Informal Kilt

An updated look featuring an open shirt with lace trim.




Street Kilt

This is the everyday kilt look you see on the streets in Edinburgh.



Modern Leather Kilt

No accessorizing required with torso above.




The Military Kilt




No matter what kind of kilt, underwear is optional, if not discouraged! 





Question for Commenters:


Do you have a favorite kilt look? Please share! I'm giving away a signed copy of A Private Duel wit Agent Gunn to a one lucky commenters chosen at random.


Purchase links:


B&N     AMAZON     BAM!     BOOK DEPOSITORY      INDIEBOUND


Jillian's Contact Information:


***Note: Offer void where prohibited. Prizes will be mailed to North America  addresses only. If an Advanced Reading Copy (ARC) is available, the author may utilize that option for International participants. Odds of winning vary due to the number of entrants.

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Character Notes for the Hero and Heroine of A Private Duel with Agent Gunn



A Hero with Soldier’s Heart
A rare glimpse at Finn's smile.

One of the things I get to do as an author is endow my heroes......with personality traits! LOL!  I enjoy giving them quirky mannerisms, expressions, as well as charming lopsided smiles (see above). Every hero has a unique sense of humor–as well as physical traits, like how muscular, how tall, or how long he wears his hair–unkempt mane or neat and well-groomed?

Most importantly, my heroes must have flaws, at the very least, weaknesses. Otherwise, these Gentlemen of Scotland Yard are just not interesting enough, not for me anyway. Beyond the demands of the cases they are working on, I want them to overcome, or at least confront, some personal challenges. 

I dug through some of my early character notes on Agent Gunn and thought I would share some of them with blog readers. Enjoy!

Name: Phineas “Finn” Gunn aka Hugh Curzon (uses Curzon working undercover)

Age: 31

Physical Characteristics: Big Scot 6’2” Thick, waves of dark hair, a bit longish, more of a wild mane. Likes to ride, so is often seen in tall boots and a long, great coat. 

Personality Traits: Can be cool, even aloof, but has reasonably good social skills. He does not suffer fools, prefers the company of his brother and few close friends. At one time Finn was a bit of a rake, but has settled in with a mistress. A risk taker in the field, he is always several moves ahead of his enemies. He is also brave to fault, which is how he gets injured.

Education: Trinity College, University of Oxford

Skills: Marksman (with a name like Gunn, he has be) bruising rider, cunning, intelligent–a top notch criminologist. 

Avocation: A talented writer of crime fiction as well as scholarly works in the field of forensic science. When he is feeling well enough, he accepts uncover assignments from both Scotland Yard and the Admiralty.

Hobbies: Fencing lessons twice a week. He also has an interest in gemology, which has grown into a lucrative appraisal business–more of a side business.

Faults: His is an acute recluse at times, due to a pitiable condition called Soldier’s Heart. Finn was stationed in the Northern Territories of India, and fought in Afghanistan during the Second Anglo-Afghan War. On patrol in Afghanistan he and his men were captured and tortured. 


Notes on Soldier’s Heart: Doctors used to call it shell shock, soldier's heart, or nostalgia. Soldiers would shake uncontrollably, experience heart palpitations, or go blind after witnessing trauma on the battlefield. From as far back as ancient Greece, history reveals the psychological toll of war on soldiers. Today we call the condition post-traumatic stress disorder.

The Greek historian Herodotus describes an Athenian warrior who became blind when a soldier standing next to him was killed during the Battle of Marathon in 490 B.C.

The condition called Soldier’s Heart was first described by an American civil war surgeon and was thought to be an actual heart malady, likely because of the rapid, erratic pulse.


A Ballerina Heroine.


Or is she also a jewel thief, as well as a clever spy?

When I imagined the heroine for this tale of romance, espionage and adventure I knew I had to make her every bit as intelligent and talented as Agent Gunn. Here are a few of my notes on Cate:

Name: Cate Willoughby aka Catriona de Dovia (stage name)

Age: 24-ish

Physical Characteristics: Statuesque, with a dancers body which means she is strong and flexible. Raven hair, striking blue eyes, and a well-defined cupid’s bow that drives Finn wild.

Personality Traits: When she is angry she goes off in Spanish (a la Ricky Ricardo) Fiercely independent, Cate can be impulsive at times, and though she claims she not an adventurer, she is often daring. She has a bohemian, artistic streak, as well.

Faults: Major trust issues. Somewhat of a loner. She fears getting close to anyone, especially after recently losing her only brother and her dear departed uncle. She has lost every one she has ever loved.

Avocation: Dance, thievery and spying.

Education: Paris Opera Ballet School

Back Story: Born to a British father and Spanish mother, Cate Willoughby is both a proper young English lady, and a hot tempered Catalan beauty. She also happens to be the inheritor of a near bankrupt estate. And as for Miss Catriona de Dovia? She is a celebrated prima ballerina as well as an anarchist sympathizer. Or might she be an infiltrator? Or scheming operative?


I am not a spoiler, but this is what I can say about A PRIVATE DUEL WITH AGENT GUNN: I have endeavored to write a love story between two clever protagonists, who have constructed false identities and employ a number of devious and cunning skills to solve the case. One of them even manages to fool the other right up to the very last pages of the novel!

Sh-h-h! I can say no more.





Question for Commenters:

Cover model Paul Marron portrays Agent Gunn. I'm told he is just about the hottest cover model going and has a legion of fans. Do you have a favorite romance cover model? If so, please share him!

I’m giving away a signed copy of A PRIVATE DUEL WITH AGENT GUNN to one lucky commenter today.

Purchase links:



B&N     AMAZON     BAM!     BOOK DEPOSITORY      INDIEBOUND


Jillian's Contact Information:


***Note: Offer void where prohibited. Prizes will be mailed to North America  addresses only. If an Advanced Reading Copy (ARC) is available, the author may utilize that option for International participants. Odds of winning vary due to the number of entrants.




Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Stuffed in an Armoire with Agent Gunn...in a Kilt...





Cate and Finn's adventure begins with a double cross and crackles with secrets, lies and sexual tension. The crime is clear–breaking and entering each other's hearts–but as the clock ticks down, who will be the first to surrender?


I’m not sure how many readers of The Gentlemen of Scotland Yard series know this, but nearly all of the Special Branch detectives are Scots. However, not one of them has worn a kilt...until now. 

Those readers who enjoyed An Affair with Mr. Kennedy, might recall a story Mr. Kennedy told at dinner about kilts and bare naked arses, but Zak Kennedy never actually wore a kilt in the novel. And Rafe Lewis, daring-do detective of A Dangerous Liaison with Detective Lewis was a peer of Scotland, and yet the right opportunity to put a kilt on him never presented itself. By the third novel of the series, I was getting inpatient with myself. I was the writer/creator of all these handsome, strapping, Scotsmen and I had yet to write a sexy kilt scene! 

So, I made up my mind that this would be the book. In A Private Duel with Agent Gunn, Phineas Gunn not only wears a kilt, but the heroine gets to do some exploring. Before I share an excerpt of the kilt scene, here’s a blurb about the story:

Prima ballerina Catriona de Dovia lives the glamorous life of a starlet, filled with glittering jewels, sumptuous dinners, and admiring suitors. She’s grown up considerably since losing her heart to Hugh Curzon once upon a time, no longer wasting her emotions on the empty promises of charming gentlemen. On her own since the untimely death of her parents, she will do anything for the only family she has left: her brother, a notorious anarchist.

Scotland Yard Agent, Phineas Gunn–sometimes known as Hugh Curzon–receives his new assignment reluctantly. He’s up for something a little more strenuous than playing nanny to a ballerina, until he sees who his charge is. Then, it’s a completely different story, because he’d been unable to forget the trusting, beautiful Cate since he had to leave her behind in Barcelona. And he suspects Cate is more than a ballet girl–in fact, she just might be a jewel thief, or even more arousing–a clever undercover operative.

Finn is determined to find out as the two race across the Continent–by land, by sea, even through the air by zephyr–it becomes uncertain who is keeping tabs on whom, and Finn and Cate must battle the sexual tension that snaps and sizzles between them every step of the way.

Free chapter read

Allow me to set up the kilt scene without being a spoiler. As you know from the blurb, there is a bit of jewel thievery–or jewel “recovery” going on. Finn believes the jewels may be financing a group of Spanish anarchists–Cate assures him they part of her deceased uncle’s estate, and rightfully hers. Suffice it to say, the hero and heroine find themselves in Lady Lucinda Sutherland's boudoir, rummaging in her jewelry safe, until they are interrupted by Lucinda and her lover. A giggle and squeal accompany the groan of bedsprings. Finn opens up a wardrobe, pushes Cate in, and dives inside...

If you'd like to know whether Finn is bare arse naked under that kilt, click the link below and enjoy a caper with Agent Gunn. 




QUESTION FOR COMMENTERS:

If you could play Cate for one chapter with Agent Gunn, what kind of scene would you enjoy most? (Besides the obvious one) A. Get stuffed in an armoire with Finn B. Break him out of prison  C. Escape in an airship  D. Teach Finn a ballet lift  E. Dance a waltz. I’m giving away a signed copy of A PRIVATE DUEL WITH AGENT GUNN to one lucky commenter today. 

Purchase links:
B&N     AMAZON     BAM!     BOOK DEPOSITORY      INDIEBOUND

Brief Author Bio:

Jillian Stone is the author of the Phaeton Black, Paranormal Investigator series, which includes The Seduction of Phaeton Black, and the just released, The Moonstone and Miss Jones. The third sequel, The Miss Education of Doctor Exeter, is scheduled to release in summer 2013. Jillian is also the author of The Gentlemen of Scotland Yard series. Watch for A Private Duel with Agent Gunn in late November!

Jillian's Contact Info: 


***Note: Offer void where prohibited. Prizes will be mailed to North America  addresses only. If an Advanced Reading Copy (ARC) is available, the author may utilize that option for International participants. Odds of winning vary due to the number of entrants.

Monday, November 26, 2012

3 STETSONS EQUAL


THREE COWBOYS
Harlequin Intrigue
ISBN: 0373696582


THIS CHRISTMAS,

THE MCCABE BROTHERS 

ARE COMING HOME TO

TEXAS...






VIRGIL by USA TODAY bestselling author Julie Miller
Detective Virgil "Bull" McCabe hadn't been back on the J-Bar-J Ranch in more than a decade. What he finds is his family in turmoil and his childhood friend, Tracy Cobb, all grown up...and more beautiful than ever.

MORGAN by Dana Marton
It took a lot to bring ex-soldier Morgan McCabe home. But when his brothers sent out a call for help, that was all the incentive he needed. Once there, though, it's his former flame, Dakota Dayton, and her toddler son who might just convince him to stay.

WYATT by Paula Graves
Sheriff Wyatt McCabe has faced a lot of criminals, but none as ruthless as the one holding his sister hostage. Now, forced to work with Elena Vargas, Wyatt has to ensure his family's safety without giving in to his burning attraction to the gorgeous agent.

THE SHORT & SWEET ON JULIE
Boots: cowboy or fashion?  Fashion
Jeans: boot cut or designer? Boot
Hats: straw, felt or ball cap?  Ball cap
Transportation: SUV, sedan, truck or four legs?  SUV
Favorite western: The Magnificent Seven
Favorite brother story: CHEROKEE THUNDER & IRONHEART by Rachel Lee (brothers in a single book? THE LION, THE WITCH & THE WARDROBE by C.S. Lewis)

THE SHORT & SWEET ON DANA
Boots: cowboy or fashion? Cowboy J
Jeans: boot cut or designer? Boot cut.
Hats: straw, felt or ball cap? No hat. Don’t touch my hair! lol
Transportation: SUV, sedan, truck or four legs? I love my hubby’s old pickup truck. Very useful for my garage sale addiction.
Favorite western: Cowboys and Aliens. Daniel Craig and Harrison Ford in the same movie. It doesn’t get better than that J
Favorite brother story: Nora Robert’s Chesapeake Bay series. Love the Quinn brothers.

THE SHORT & SWEET ON PAULA
Boots: cowboy or fashion? Cowboy
Jeans: boot cut or designer? Boot cut
Hats: straw, felt or ball cap? Ball cap
Transportation: SUV, sedan, truck or four legs? Sedan
Favorite western: BLOOD ON THE MOON with Robert Mitchum & Barbara Bel Geddes
Favorite brother story: Do TV shows count?  If so, I'll go with SIMON AND SIMON.

MEET THE McCABES
ANGI: Public service seems to run in your blood. Who inspired you to serve in the military or law enforcement?
VIRGIL:  God, good genes and years of hard work on the ranch made me a big, bad S.O.B.  There’s got to be a reason for that—protecting people and taking down bad guys seems to work for me.  Besides, I saw and endured enough trouble growing up that I’m motivated to keep any innocent from suffering the way my brothers, my mom and I did.
MORGAN: The older brother of my best friend who was a Navy S.E.A.L. He was tough, didn’t take bull from anyone. He would defend the weak and stand for our country. He was the first real life hero I met. Before that, I thought heroes were people in history books.
WYATT:  Both of my older brothers went off to be heroes.  What was I going to do, sit at home on the ranch while they were off being cool and all?  And as much as I love Serpentine, Texas, this wild and wonderful town where we grew up, I couldn't think of a better town to protect.

ANGI: What’s the first book you remember reading? 
VIRGIL:  Um… That I’ll admit to?  I remember Mom reading SMOKEY, THE COWHORSE to me as a kid. I liked it.  And Tracy Cobb, my neighbor and best bud, got me through American Lit our junior year.  TO KILL A MOCKINGBIRD is one I actually own a copy of now.
MORGAN: The James Bond series. He had the gadgets, the cars, always got the girl. <shrugs> What’s not to like?
WYATT:  Zane Grey's KNIGHTS OF THE RANGE.

ANGI: What’s your favorite “love” word?
VIRGIL: Blue Eyes
MORGAN: I rather show love then talk about it. And I definitely won’t talk about what happened in the upstairs hallway closet. A gentleman doesn’t… kiss and tell ;-)
WYATT:  What kind of sissy question is that?  Did one of my brothers put you up to it?  Oh, all right.  I guess I like the word adore.  What's not to like about adore?

ANGI: What’s your idea of a unique date?
VIRGIL: My favorite date is to ride out to a remote corner of the ranch with a picnic basket and some cold beers.  Long talks, fresh air, moonlight.  Depending on the company, I’d pack a blanket or sleeping bag, too.
MORGAN: Tandem skydiving. Get a girl’s knees shaky and it’s easier to sweep her off her feet. ;-) I already have a date scheduled for you know who. Don’t tell her.
WYATT:  I don't know if it's really unique, but a girl who finds the romance in going bass fishing on Lake Amistad is what I'd call a keeper.

ANGI: Who’s your favorite action hero?
VIRGIL: Ben Grimm in the Fantastic Four (btw, Morgan is Reed Richards—well, he thinks he’s Mr. Fantastic—and Wyatt’s gotta be Johnny Storm—Flame on, pipsqueak!) We do Adam, Hoss and Little Joe Cartwright, too.  (well, about 20 years ago we did.)
MORGAN: Laura Croft. I like strong, smart women.
WYATT:  Detective John McClane.  Yippy Ki Yay.


ANGI: What’s your favorite cartoon character?

VIRGIL: Elmer Fudd
MORGAN: I’m not admitting. My brothers would never let me live it down. Sorry, folks.
WYATT:  Bugs Bunny, because he's chock full of attitude.

ANGI’S GOTTA ASK: What was the most challenging part of writing Virgil’s story?
JULIE’S GOTTA ANSWER:  I had the brother angle on this story down pat. But I will confess, I’m a Marine Corps brat/city girl, so creating authentic ranch life with a hero who’s a former rodeo bull-riding champ required a little research.  Fortunately, my CP (author Sherry James) raises horses and lives on a ranch, so she let me ask her all kinds of questions. Plus, she won a dinner with a group of rodeo champs when the National Finals for bull-riding were held in Grand Island, Nebraska—and she took me as her guest! I met a real “Bull”—a stock manager from South Dakota who provided bulls for the event.

ANGI’S GOTTA ASK: What was the most challenging part of writing Morgan’s story?
DANA’S GOTTA ANSWER:   He’s soooo stubborn. He never did what I wanted him to do. Dakota had the same trouble with him. Sometimes it’s hard to decide whether to kiss a guy or strangle him. He was that guy. I’m pretty sure he gave me gray hairs. Thing is, he’s worth the trouble.

ANGI’S GOTTA ASK: What was the most challenging part of writing Wyatt’s story?
PAULA’S GOTTA ANSWER:   Trying to get the flavor of South Texas right.  That part of the state is very different from where I live in Alabama — flat, dry and expansive rather than hilly and damp — and I really wanted people to get a taste of the terrain, since my characters spend a lot of time out in it. Fortunately, I minored in Spanish in college, so I was able to sprinkle the story with a little bit of Spanish, especially helpful since my heroine is Latina.

FIND JULIE on the Intrigue-Authors Blog &
Twitter @JulieMillerAuth  Goodreads 
Previous GLIAS interviews
FIND DANA on the Intrigue-Authors Blog &
Twitter  @DanaMarton   Goodreads
Pintrest  Blog  Previous GLIAS interviews
FIND PAULA on the Intrigue-Authors Blog &
Twitter    @Paula_Graves   
Previous GLIAS interviews

UP NEXT 
for JULIE:
TACTICAL ADVANTAGE
Harlequin Intrigue, March 2013
for DANA:
MOST ELIGIBLE SPY
Harlequin Intrigue, July 2013

for PAULA:
MURDER IN THE SMOKIES is the first of three books in my new Bitterwood P.D. miniseries coming from Harlequin Intrigue in June, 2013.  Two more books follow back to back in July and August.


PREVIOUS RELEASES
from JULIE:
KANSAS CITY COWBOY
Harlequin Intrigue, Aug. 2012
ISBN # 978-0-0373-69634-5








from DANA:
DEATHSCAPE


from PAULA:
PLAYING DEAD IN DIXIE 
Whistleblower Carly Sandano is in scalding hot water. While the FBI wants her to testify against her crooked boss, her boss just wants her dead. So when the bus she hops out of Atlantic City crashes, she fakes her death and heads south to Bangor, Georgia, to fulfill a fellow passenger's dying wish: deliver his casino winnings to his family.

But she didn't figure on the dead man's friendly parents, who dish up heaping helpings of southern hospitality. Or how sexy she'd find the smoldering, suspicious chief of police, Wes Hollingsworth. Before she knows it, the girl who never likes to stay in one place too long finds herself wondering how she's ever going to leave Georgia behind. But there's still a killer gunning for her, and the last thing she wants to do is bring bullets raining down on the sleepy little town...

THREE GIVE AWAYS
JULIE IS DRAWING for a signed copy of THREE COWBOYS!
DANA WILL DRAW for a signed copy of THE SPY WORE SPURS. (North America only)
PAULA WILL DRAW FOR an amazon.com e-gift card worth $20 to a winner.  (US/Canada ~I can't ever figure out the exchange rate for the UK.)

DON’T FORGET to FOLLOW us on Twitter #GetLostStories or LIKE us on Facebook to keep up with all our guest authors and their prizes. Come back tomorrow as Jillian celebrates the debut of A PRIVATE DUEL WITH AGENT GUNN. ~Angi 

JULIE WANTS TO KNOW: What is/was your favorite Western tv show or movie?

DANA WANTS TO KNOW: Who is your favorite cowboy actor of all times? Who is the one you think really got it right?

PAULA WANTS TO KNOW: Do you think there's a particular type of hero or heroine that you’re not seeing enough of in Intrigues.  Could be a career path never shown or a particular character archetype you'd love to see.  I'm curious what readers are looking for these days.

Friday, November 23, 2012

Barbara Longley Invites Us to Get Lost in a Perfect Book



As a child, Barbara J. Longley moved frequently, learning early on how to entertain herself with stories. Adulthood didn’t tame her peripatetic ways: she has lived on an Appalachian commune, taught on an Indian reservation, and traveled the country from coast to coast. After having children of her own, she decided to try staying put, choosing Minnesota as her home. By day, she puts her master’s degree in special education to use teaching elementary school. By night, she explores all things mythical, paranormal, and newsworthy, channeling what she learns into her writing.

Find Barbara at:
http://www.barbaralongley.com
@barbaralongley (twitter)
http://www.facebook.com/pages/Barbara-Longley


Noah Langford narrowly survived the roadside bombing in Iraq that killed five of his men and took his leg, leaving him haunted by flashbacks and riddled with guilt. When his stepbrother Matt dies in a car accident, the loss feels like the final blow to Noah’s shattered soul. But then he learns about the girlfriend and baby Matt abandoned years earlier, and suddenly Noah has a new mission…

Ceejay Lovejoy was nineteen and pregnant when her boyfriend walked out, disappearing from her life just like her parents did. Since that day, Ceejay has devoted herself to giving her daughter a better life, avoiding any man who could threaten that security—until the day Noah Langford shows up on her doorstep. His gentle spirit has an unexpected effect on Ceejay’s guarded heart, tempting her to take one last chance on love. But when a painful secret comes to light, it threatens to break the fragile bond growing between them…and to destroy a love powerful enough to heal them both.

CAT:  How often to you get lost in a story?  
BARBARA:  Very frequently! I read almost every night before I close my eyes. Sometimes what I’m reading (usually romance) keeps me up way past my bedtime.

CAT:  What’s your favorite kind of story to get lost in?
BARBARA:  I love contemporary and paranormal romance.

CAT:  What’s the first book you remember reading?
BARBARA:  I learned to read with Dick and Jane books. Remember those? But the very first book that *trapped* me was Misty of Chincoteague, then National Velvet, and The Black Stallion. After I grew out of my horse phase, I moved on to the paranormals of my day, like The Hobbit and The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe

CAT:  What’s your favorite fairy tale?
BARBARA:  I like Cinderella, the Disney version. I used to put it on for my daughter all the time when she was little, so I could watch it.

CAT:  What’s your favorite cartoon character?
BARBARA:  Without a doubt it’s Yosemite Sam. Any of you remember him? The handlebar mustache and his curmudgeon-like personality, yeah, Yosemite Sam is definitely my favorite cartoon character. I’d date him. Is that weird?

CAT:  What turns you off like nothing else? Procrastination.
BARBARA:  Is there a playlist you’d recommend for reading your latest release? Not so much for FAR FROM PERFECT, but for the second book in the trilogy, THE DIFFERENCE A DAY MAKES, Eli Young Band’s “War on a Desperate Man” is the song that inspired the creation my main character, Ryan Malloy.

CAT:  Where do you read and how often?
BARBARA:  Either in my living room in “mom’s” chair, or in bed.

CAT:  What was the first story you remember writing?
BARBARA:  This is embarrassing. Long, long, long ago, I wrote a riveting tale entitled WOOLY WILLARD, CATERPILLAR. It was about a confused caterpillar who knew he was supposed to do something, but didn’t know what it was. It turns out he was supposed to build a cocoon and morph into a butterfly. It was a page-turner, I tell ya. I think I still have the original somewhere. My mom saved it.

CAT:  Who’s your favorite villain?
BARBARA:  Lex Luther, or any villain who really believes he’s doing what needs to be done.

CAT:  What’s something you’d like to tell your fans?
BARBARA:  Please, please, please read my books! Is that too much? OK, the kindest most generous thing a reader can ever do for a writer whose work they like: Tell a few friends.

CAT:  Do you write while listening to music? If so what kind?
BARBARA:  Yes, and what I listen to depends on what I’m writing. Sometimes Country Western, sometimes Celtic, sometimes R&B, or pop.

CAT:  If you couldn’t be a writer anymore, what profession would you take up?
BARBARA:  I’d be a visual artist, or I’d keep my day job as a teacher.

CAT:  What’s the first thing you do when you finish writing a book?
BARBARA:  SMILE. Next I call a writer friend and make plans for a dinner out including wine.

CAT:  If you were given a chance to travel to the past where would you go and specifically why?
BARBARA:  I’d be a noble during the Renaissance period.

CAT:  Do you read reviews of your books? If so, do you pay any attention to them, or let them influence your writing?
BARBARA:  I do read reviews, and they don’t influence my writing, but they certainly influence my mood. The truth is, after you’ve read a bunch of reviews, you realize what really bugs one reader isn’t even noticed by the next. Like all things, it’s subjective. You can’t please everyone, so you just have to stay true to your own vision and write from the heart.

BARBARA’S QUESTION FOR YOU:
As a reader, what do you see trending recently in the kind of books you read? What do you want to read?

Barbara is offering a signed copy of FAR FROM PERFECT. Please leave your contact info in the comments.