Monday, May 30, 2011

Happy Memorial Day!

I hope everyone has a beautiful day. I'm off to prepare food for guests, so I'll keep it short and sweet. I think that I may have mentioned this once before, but just in case...

If you're a serious writer, you really, really should get a subscription to Writer's Digest Magazine. Just my humble opinion, but they have great articles on writing, as well as one called 'Ask The Agent'. The edition that just arrived in the mail (July/August 2011) is titled 'Your Ultimate Revision Guide' and it has wonderful articles on different aspects of revision (character depth, voice, tone etc...).  One article is by James Scott Bell, author of Plot and Structure (excellent craft book btw). It would be selfish of me not to point this edition of Writer's Digest out to all of you. Check it out.

Anyway, I hope you all have a great day and an awesome week as we skid into June!

Thursday, May 26, 2011

First Blog Tag

I've never been blog tagged before (blush). The lovely Carol Kilgore over at Under The Tiki Hut tagged me a few days ago. If you haven't been over there, check it out!

I'm embarrassed to say that, as simple as the tag questions are, I've been at a loss for words. Choices, choices. Aren't tough calls supposed to be for our heroes and heroines? Don't writers get some sort Free Pass on tough decisions? LOL. Well...I cheated.

Yep. And I never cheat. I'm a terrible liar too. But I did it. I shrank the questions by a few. In my twisted way of thinking, the bloggers I don't mention have more company for moral support ;). No, really. All my blogger friends are awesome, so I picked a mix of old and new. What? Not allowed to cheat? Hey, it's my first tag and a first time offense. Send out the tag police...just make sure they're hunky ;)

Here it goes:

Do you think you're hot? Ha! NO!!!!!!

Upload a picture or wallpaper you're using at the moment.

When was the last time you ate chicken? I made organic, tarragon roasted chickens with potato and carrots two nights ago.

What were you thinking as you were doing this? That I need to be polishing my manuscript.

Tag five blogger friends.
1. Nas Dean
2. Christy Olesen
3. Maria Zannini
4. Kaily Hart
5. Stina Lindenblatt

Who is listed as #1? Nas Dean over at She does wonderful author interviews.

Say something about #5. Stina has a fantastic craft/writing blog called Seeing Creative. Check it out!

How did you get to know #2? I checked out Christy's blog after she started following me. I really liked it and followed her back :)

Do #3 and #4 have any similarities? Maria and Kaily write yummy, hot heroes ;)

Okay. You tagees are supposed to tag others, but no obligation. Did I just break a rule again by saying that? Really, I just hope all of you check out their blogs. Enjoy!

Monday, May 23, 2011

Monogamous Heroes: Prove it

Prove what? We all know romance heroes are monogamous. They have to be. It comes with the job description. Right?

Well, recent news of Arnold Schwartzenegger's infidelity brought back memories of Hugh Grant, Ryan Phillipe, Tiger Woods and Jesse James' wandering wands (to name just a few). Depressing. And look at their wives! We're talking attractive, accomplished women...better looking than the guys, if you ask me. Now, I don't want to open a can of worms here. I don't want to get into the evolutionary psychology of men and how 'spreading their seed' is genetically ingrained in them. Give me a break. Are we forgetting the key word 'evolved' here? Are men really going to reach back to their neanderthal ancestors to grasp for excuses? I can argue right back that expenditure of energy plays a vital role in survival (evolutionarily and ecologically speaking)...and we don't spend energy in the same way these days. It's called technology. Oh, and there's that higher education thing too, but I digress. I'll get off my soapbox.

What I really want to talk about is how a writer can prove that their hero won't ever cheat on their heroine. Okay. Prove is a strong word, and it may be hard to wipe out all doubt, but how do we leave a reader believing that the hero won't sway years after they close the book? Specifically, what actions or words on the hero's part show that he's one of an elite group of one-woman men? Simply saying that he declared his undying love, or he proposed marriage, or he saved her life isn't enough. What are the little actions throughout the story that make the hero trustworthy? Is it that he is a loner, so he's unlikely to go 'looking' in the future? Is it that he visits his parents a lot and is very family oriented? Or maybe it's the way he's loyal to his dog. Does that translate to his woman? Perhaps it's in the dialogue that takes place when the heroine is off the page. It could be that one sentence in the book where he declines a female advance, or confides something to a guy friend. Or does profession have anything to do with it? We've all heard about how men with high power or fame seem to think they are entitled to more than one bed. Seriously here. It could be something as little as his evening routine or how he was raised.

What do you think? I'd love to open the floor up here. Can you think of specific examples (action or dialogue) in romances where you just knew that hero would be faithful long after the babies are born, the wife gains weight, money gets tight, and the teenagers bring on even more stress? BTW, this is why I love a series where I can get a glimpse of previous H/H and see how they're still strong.

Thursday, May 19, 2011

And the winner is...


You just won a copy of Liz Talley's A Taste of Texas and a Starbucks giftcard! Email Liz with your contact information at:

liz (at) liztalleybooks (dot) com

Congrats and enjoy!

Monday, May 16, 2011

Interview With Harlequin Superromance Author Liz Talley

Come on in! Grab your cup of java and come sit around the kitchen table with Harlequin Superromance author Liz Talley. There's plenty of room (it's a Texas size table ;)), and what better place to hang out and gossip about romance. In particular, the latest romance heating up in Oak Stand, Texas. Liz introduced us to the small town full of big hearts with her first Superromance, Vegas Two Step, back in 2010. I've been hooked by her voice, humor, and sexy take on Supers ever since. I'm not one bit surprised that she was a Golden Heart finalist in 2009. One taste of a Talley romance, and I know you'll be coming back for more!

I'll stop gabbing now (it's the caffeine rush) and get on with the questions. Be sure to ask some of your own. We've got time, plenty of coffee, and...heck...we're in a kitchen, so I'm sure we can dig up some snacks too ;).

1. Congratulations on the release of A Taste of Texas! The folks in Oak Stand, Texas sure know how to cook up some romance ;). Okay. Okay. I know it's a fictional town, and you're really the one behind the brewing. I'm just glad I get to savor the results. And I bet your latest hero is happy to taste test anything your heroine, professional chef Rayne Rose, cooks up. I don't care if it's the hero or the heroine, I'll order any story (movie or book) that involves a chef. What is it that makes chefs (of both sexes) so appealing in romances?

The heat? I’m not sure. I think preparing food can be a definite art so there is already an element of passion sitting there waiting to be unleashed. And then on the other hand, food is comfort and familiar to everyone. Women may not automatically relate to biochemistry or art history, but most relate to feeding their man. I think there is validity in thinking the way to a man’s heart is through his stomach. Wanna make a man happy? Chicken fry him a steak and serve it with gravy. Yeah. You’ll have him in your palm. And if that doesn’t work, you can try sex. LOL.

2. Well, I have to say that you take the cake on secret ingredients. In A Taste of Texas, Brent Hamilton, who played Oak Stand's ex-jock, cocky contractor in the first three books, turns out to be a closet author of none other than a sports series for young boys. You stirred a few more secrets into those first pages, but I don't want to spoil it for anyone who hasn't read it yet. From page one, you introduced a side of him that took me by surprise and made me want more. I actually felt guilty for having had preconceived notions about him...for judging him too quickly in the previous books. What was it about Brent that had you wanting to dig in? What's your method...character interview questions, casual conversations in your head, or something else?

You know in the first book, Brent was a plot device…very much a stereotype. But I love to take a stereotype and show him to be something more. When I thought about successive books, I discarded him at first. He was slimy. Ugh. But then one day I wondered why. Why was he such a man whore? And then my imagination took off. Like the Regency rake so many want to tame, I wanted to bring him to Texas in 2010. Could he be reformed? And by who?

3. Bubba, Bubba, Bubba (said with a grin while shaking my head). For any of you new to Liz's books, you have got to meet Bubba. He's the character of characters, though 'cream of the crop' would not quite describe him. He's certainly not 'gourmet', nor is he 'spicy'. He (cough, cough) does appreciate food though. He's probably the best, warmest comfort food you can think of...with a heart that's a Texas sized gold nugget. For all his rough edges, I'd consider marrying the teddy bear, but I'm married. Will Bubba be getting his HEA? Single, small town women everywhere want to know :).

Well, I had to give Bubba a woman. Just had to. Everyone seems to love him and we women do like to make sure everyone is loved. I wanted to give him a sweetheart…but she ended up very atypical of what a good ol’ boy would like. She’s a tart-tongued, semi-Goth assistant to Rayne Rose. She even has a nose ring and wears ridiculous boots, scoffing left and right at everything small town. But if anyone can teach her the delights of cow tipping and bass fishing, it’s Bubba. BTW, in the last book (A Touch of Scarlet) you’ll find out his real name!

4. Do you have a secret recipe, ingredient, or technique for serving up a synopsis well-done? Forks and knives are pounding the tables! Anything? Microwaving? Tupperware? Doesn't tupperware fix all problems?

Ah, the synopsis. Bane of a writer’s existence. When I first started, I worked like the devil to interject my voice in my synopsis while giving the editor or agent what she needed – a story with tight plot and engrossing characters. I think it’s important to be consistent with your voice in a synopsis. If you write dark and suspenseful, allow that to carry over. If your voice is light and chicklit, make sure you bleed some color into the overall story. Otherwise, it won’t be YOU. Only other hint - map it out and make sure you have GMC for each character…gotta show growth.

5. Call stories to aspiring authors are like fresh ingredients to gourmet chefs...they're inspiring and you always want more. We're ordering up your Call story!

Every writer loves a call story, doesn’t he/she? I certainly do. Let’s see. It was a Friday, and I had been out running errands with my hubbie. We got in and unloaded groceries. I popped some leftover veggie pizza in the microwave because I was starving, and checked the messages. When I saw Harlequin Enterprises on the caller id, my heart dropped into my toes. I tried to dial voice messaging, but mistakenly called the number. The receptionist answered and I said, “Oh, God. I didn’t mean to do that. Um. Wrong number. Sorry” and then I hung up so embarrassed. I finally listened to the message. Wanda Ottewell wanted me to call her back! Gulp. I ran to my office ignoring my husband who kept calling out, “What are you doing?” Wanda answered, we did some idle chitchat, then she said, “Amy (which is my real name) can I call you right back? I’m in the middle of something.” To which I stammered. “Okay.” So an hour later, after I’d been to the bathroom four times and taken a Xanax, she called back. She told me she wanted to contract the book, all the terms, delivery dates, etc. I dutifully wrote them down. Finally she said, “You have been so calm.” To which I said, “Thanks. I took a xanax.” LOL.

6. What's the one thing you did (other than not quitting) that you feel played a critical role in landing you your first book contract? Any words of wisdom for aspiring authors?

I behaved like I was a successful author. I made writing a priority, setting aside time as if it were a job. I also entered contests and went to conferences. I never passed up an opportunity to pitch to an editor or agent, I got a critique partner, and I printed up business cards. And most importantly, I imagined myself being successful. I found a fortune in a fortune cookie that read: If you can form it in your mind, you can create it in your life. I made that my motto for writing. So, overall, I think attitude matters.

7. After A Touch of Scarlet (October 2011), you're taking us out of Oak Stand, Texas and down to Southern Louisiana in a new series called The Boys of Bayou Bridge, due out Fall 2012. Can you throw us some bait? 'Cause I can't wait!

Well, of course. This series follows the three Dufrene brothers – Nate, Abram and Darby- as they embark upon the pursuit of romance. Of course, they don’t know they are pursing romance. LOL. Nate is a detective who must track down a threat against a Hollywood director’s son with the help of a certain pragmatic (and sexy) undercover nanny, Annie Perez. LSU football tight ends coach Abram has to pursue an elusive blue chipper recruit, but has to penetrate the defense of Lou Boyd to get to him. Lou drives a front end loader, but has a set of legs on her that has Abram pursuing the wrong Boyd. And then Navy lawyer Darby discovers he’s been hitched to his childhood sweetheart since they were teens. The wild Renny isn’t an ideal attorney’s wife for a high profile Seattle firm, but when Darby goes back to Bayou Bridge to dissolve the marriage and meet his long lost twin sister, he discovers just how perfect the wildlife and fisheries agent fits him. The whole series has a separate story entwined throughout all three books – the homecoming of Della Dufrene, the sister who everyone thought murdered.

8. It's all about internal conflict and being forced to make a choice ;). Your turn to choose. Hot, savory, sexy southern Louisiana main course...or one of their sweet, seductive, french caressed desserts?

Both. I want it all! Can’t you tell?

9. Now Louisiana is known for its unique culture and flavors. I never tried gator while I lived there, but I do remember how, during crawfish season, every gas station had a stand where you could buy boiled crawfish while filling your tank. Do you have any unique/quirky writing habits and/or a favorite deadline snack?

Not really. I like it quiet or if there is noise around me, I prefer the Starbucks variety. Coffee inspires me. I drink about a pot of coffee every day. I like it with sweet-n-low and cream, preferably hazelnut liquid creamer. I could probably lose weight if I’d give up the cream.

Oh, and the whole idea of Louisiana cooking being awesome is so very true. If you want a good vacation…a romantic getaway…go to New Orleans. Get a room in a nice hotel in the French Quarter. Try to go around this time of year. The weather is tolerable and it’s pretty. Then call me and I’ll recommend some restaurants. If you go to New Orleans and eat at a chain restaurant, you should be smited down. Seriously. Too many good places to choose from. It truly is my idea of a good vacation. Good food, good drinks (yeah, we drink a lot) and a fluffy bed in a city full of ambiance and character,

Thanks for having me here, Rula. Always fun to visit a friend and make new friends. That’s what I love best about the romance community. We learn so much from each other and it helps us be better writers.

Thanks for being here, Liz! It was great fun.

Blurb for A Taste of Texas:

Returning to Oak Stand, Texas, doesn't mean things haven't panned out for Rayne Rose. In fact, she's a celebrity chef so successful she desperately needs her equilibrium! Fixing up her aunt's B and B is the perfect step back. But how's Rayne supposed to get perspective with Brent Hamilton—the best friend who broke her heart—next door?

Beauty in motion. That was Brent then—and now. The boy Rayne adored has become a good-time guy…and all wrong for this widowed single mom. Still, she can't resist the different version of Brent she glimpses beneath the surface. And that taste tempts her to dig a little deeper. Because maybe what they once had could still be.

Buy it here:
Barnes and Noble

Find Liz here:

GIVEAWAY: Liz is giving away a copy of A Taste of Texas AND a Starbucks gift card to one lucky winner! Just leave a comment and you'll be entered in the drawing. The winner will be posted here this Thursday, May 19th.

Thursday, May 5, 2011

And the winners are...

Micole Black
Stina Lindenblatt

Congratulations! Each of you has won a backcopy (your choice) of one of Debra Salonen's Spotlight on Sentinel Pass (Harlequin Superromance) stories. Please contact Debra at:


Enjoy! And Happy Cinco de Mayo!

Monday, May 2, 2011

Interview with Harlequin Superromance Author Debra Salonen

I'm so happy to have award winning author Debra Salonen here today. Debra published her first book with Harlequin in 2000 and has since welcomed loyal fans into her fictional, South Dakota community of Sentinel Pass. Sadly, the series is coming to a close, but life in Sentinel Pass will go on. It's never too late to visit her wonderful characters there :). Debra is undoubtedly conjuring up more amazing stories for her readers...speaking of which, she just self-published a short story called A Hundred Years or More. It's truly a must-read, heart tugging story about a wise and loving parrot, and the life of a girl through his eyes (see link below).

Debra is giving away one book from her 'Spotlight on Sentinel Pass' backlist to each of two lucky winners! Leave a comment or question and you'll be entered in the drawing. Details below.

On to the interview!

1. First of all, congratulations on winning the Romantic Times Reviewer's Choice Award for Best Superromance of 2010! Until He Met Rachel is one of my favorite books from your Sentinel Pass series, and it definitely deserved the win. Tomorrow is the official release day for A Father's Quest, the final book in your SP series. The end of a series is always sad (even torturous) for readers...especially self-proclaimed series addicts. Who decides when a series should come to a close? Is it the author, editor, publisher or their marketing staff? Does the author have a say in it?

Thank you for mentioning my RT award. It came as such a surprise because the circumstances surrounding the writing of that book were so extreme (losing my sister to cancer). This honor celebrates the power of romance books to help readers ESCAPE. Because that’s exactly what I did while I was writing it.

As to the length of a series, I can only speak for myself. I started the “Spotlight on Sentinel Pass” series with a 5-book contract. As I neared the end of those books, I realized I still had some characters that needed/deserved a second look. Rufus, for one. (Although I have to admit, he started out as a pretty vague and slightly off-putting character--a hairy hermit. ;-0) But his mystery is what drew me to him. I loved discovering the layers beneath his hirsute exterior. Anyway, I could identify a couple of heroes--Rufus and Cade--that I wanted to write about, and I really loved William, the agent, from my earlier books and was captivated by his British accent. Cade’s heroine, Jessie, happened to be a twin so, of course, I had to write Remy’s story, too. But Remy and Jessie took us back to their roots and that’s where I decided to leave the series.

I hope those die-hard connected book readers will enjoy the final “round-up” of the main characters in Remy’s book. It was bittersweet for me to write.

2. Last month's release, Return To Black Hills, addresses the difficult choices women make between career and family. Obviously, there are many, individual reasons why certain choices are made. As a writer, do you take extra care (or research) in making sure both sides of any issue are addressed, so that all readers can relate? As you are writing, are you conscious of how your stories (conflicts, resolutions, and all) will empower readers in their personal lives?

That’s a really good question, Rula. And, after giving it some serious thought, I think the answer to both questions is “No. Not really.”

I do research, yes, but mostly to make sure I don’t write something that could never, would never, happen in real life. To understand Jessie’s job, I watched tons of videos, read a bunch of blogs and websites and first-person memoirs. But, mostly, I was concerned about why she chose this job and why it was so important to her. Readers will either get it or not, based on their own experiences.

First and foremost, I’m telling the story of my characters’ lives. Issues come up as I learn more about them. Jessie’s career was the most important thing in her life for a reason. I hope my readers found it believable--even if they would hopefully never have to experience that sort of childhood trauma (a fire that she blamed herself for). Any resolution has to address the underlying reason for a character’s motivation and that can be tricky, but the main thing I try to keep in mind is that any “fix” has to come from within, not from without. The hero might be the person who opens the heroine’s eyes to her own self-worth, but she has to “get it” on her own. And who can’t relate to that, right? Don’t we all have friends who are wonderful but only see their faults, not their gifts?

3. You have a degree in geography and history. Did you ever consider writing historicals? If you were to write in a genre other than contemporary romance, what would it be?

My very first attempt to write a novel was a historical. I was working with a writing instructor and a critique group at the time and I vividly remember reading my opening three pages--which, horror-of-blushing-horror--involved a very vivid love scene. I’d like to find that book--probably stored for posterity on those big floppy disks--and see if it’s as bad as I remember.

I love history. I love the old west. If I were to write outside my genre, I’d go there, first. But one of my favorite subjects to read is time travel, so I might find a way to work that in.

4. Flashback time! Everyone wants to know how your first 'Call' went down, especially now that you're a successful, award winning author. Please share!

You’d like this better if you could hear me. Why? Because the editor who called me is South African, and she spoke with the most beautiful, shades of British accent. So, use your imagination, okay?

Phone rings. I am sitting on the floor in our guest bedroom to take advantage of the lovely, warm sunshine. I had pad and pen in hand--yes, I still worked with paper at that time. I was working on my second book because I’d pretty much given up on ever hearing back from Harlequin. (Mine was one of those submissions that got lost in the slush heap, only to be found, read, and have revisions requested after some 14 months into the process.) I had the answering machine set up because I was screening calls--my big concession to my creative process. No more answering the phone in the hope that it was an editor--only to have my hope squashed by a telemarketer.

I cock my head to listen to the voice two rooms away.

“Hello, this is Zilla Soriano with Harlequin Books in Toronto. I’m trying to reach Debra Sa...” Here’s the kicker. She actually pronounced my name right. OMG! I loved her on the spot.

I jumped to my feet. Ran the distance on legs made of rubber bands. Grabbed the phone off the hook, nearly pulling it from the wall plug. And shouted -- I’m sure of it--"Hello? Yes? I’m here."

My voice was thready and pitchy and probably squeaked.

She very calmly replied, “Hello. I’m so glad you’re there. I’m calling because we’d very much like to publish your lovely book.”

I still tear up when I repeat this, but my accent is very good because I’ve repeated it so often over the years. ;-)

5. You practice yoga regularly. From a philosophical/mind-body perspective, how has it impacted your writing life? From a physical perspective, is there one, simple stretch that you feel all writers reading this would benefit from? Maybe for our hands/arms...or BICHOK butts?

What’s the O.K. part of that mean? (Sorry. Took me years to figure out ROFLMAO.)

Yoga is without a doubt the best thing I’ve ever done for myself. Sitting for long periods of time without movement is hard on the body. Yoga keeps me limber and I do think it contributes to an overall fluidity of thought, as well. When you are doing yoga, it’s important to push away outside thought. Not easy for a writer on deadline, but over the years I’ve gotten better. That break is like opening a door in your mind and letting a fresh breeze blow through. I highly recommend it.

One pose that does not take any effort or training is called: legs up the wall. Seriously. I use it after a long day in the chair when I need to restore a small bit of energy and let go of all my unresolved dilemmas in my story.

Step one: choose a wall free of pictures or posters or anything framed that might crash down on you. Take off your shoes.

Step two: sit on the floor with one hip touching the wall and your legs stretched flat to the side.

Step three: pivot to your back, drawing your legs up the wall. Scoot your butt closer until it’s touching the wall and your heels are overhead, pressed firmly against the wall.

Step four: close your eyes and focus on your breathing. Slow, deep and steady, exhaling completely.

That’s it. It’s deceptively powerful. Blood returns to the brain. Your lungs work to move the blood to your feet. Relief, release, relaxation rushes over you. (Too much alliteration?)

Consider this my gift to you. ;-)

6. Your son is a yoga guru. Do you think people consider you to be a relationship guru because you're a romance writer? Do folks come to you now more than ever for love advice? (I'm not published, and it's already happening. Just saying...)

Oh, man, you had to ask this one, didn’t you? Can I post a photo here? It says it all. Let’s try. It’s a family shot from a couple of years ago.

See the shadow figure? The ghostly presence? The body so far out of the picture it’s almost like he doesn’t exist? That’s because my beautiful, talented, amazing daughter (standing beside the shadow figure who shall remain nameless) has a mother who writes romance novels and in every single book the HEA is guaranteed and that’s exactly how it’s supposed to work in real life, right? In 300 pages or less.

Poor baby. Her hero search goes on.

7. Okay. Embarrassing moments. We can all relate to them, so I think it's genius when a writer gets cruel and makes their hero or heroine suffer an embarrassing moment. You have the moment of all moments, involving a box of sex toys, in Until He Met Rachel. Hilarious! And I love how you incorporate humor in a book that deals with a serious issue. What's the most embarrassing moment you've experienced? If you'd rather, you can pick you favorite from a book.

I had sooo much fun writing that scene. The dogs were key. I’m so glad you liked it. The best part of that scene for me was the heroine’s reaction to it. I think it said a lot about her as a person. I’m proud of that scene.

Now, as for personal embarrassing know, I don’t get out much. Nothing pops to mind. That’s sort of embarrassing in and of itself. I’ll give it more thought and get back to you. Sigh. Boring life...mutter, mutter...

8. I know it's kind of like searching for a pot of gold at the end of a rainbow, but over the years, have you discovered any helpful secrets to synopsis writing?

No magic words or special key. I will share what Harlequin asks for on its Art Sheets. This helped me simplify my much too long synopsis into a shorter, more succinct document. Whether or not it’s right...well, who really knows?

1) What is this book about (beyond plot description)? How would you describe it to your friends? What is the takeaway?

2) For the key relationship in this book, what is the turning point or climax? Please describe.

3) What are the overriding themes that run throughout – the bigger message?

4) What is the significance/inspiration for your title? Is it metaphorical or literal?

5) What interesting visual elements (either object or place) have great significance in this book?

9. I was reading through your list of very interesting careers and stopped dead at flaxseed counter. (Those of you who haven't seen a flaxseed...they're very tiny and a bit slippery.) I couldn't help but wonder if you ever 'manually' counted the word count in one of your manuscripts, just for old times sake LOL. Seriously though, talk about a lesson in patience. If there's one lesson, or piece of advice, you could give aspiring authors (other than not quitting), what would it be?

Love what you’re doing. If you don’t love it, your reader won’t either.

I did not love flaxseed counting. Believe it or not, though, I can look back at that summer with a great deal of fondness because I was working side-by-side with my sister, who is now deceased. We laughed a lot and complained a lot, but we still did the work and did it well and got paid.

Maybe my lesson that summer was to be present, fulfill my contracted obligations and try to have as much as possible at the same time.

10. Let's wrap it up with a bit of fun. What's your quirkiest writing habit and favorite deadline crunch-time snack?

It’s not quirky, but it really is good for the brain: almonds and dates and/or raisins. Chocolate fits in nicely, as well, but I don’t always have that around. (Back to the butt in chair thing...expanding to meet the size of said chair.)

LOL, Deb. I think that's something we can all relate to. Thanks so much for being here!

Blurb for A Father's Quest:

Jonas Galloway wouldn't show up on Remy Bouchard's doorstep without an excellent reason. Not after a secret destroyed what was so good between them. In this case, though, locating his daughter trumps unfinished business. He hopes he can persuade Remy to see it the same way.

Working with his high school sweetheart makes Jonas want to pick up where they left off. Especially because Remy is more tempting than ever. But he is a father and his little girl has to be his priority. Then an exposed lie hands him and Remy a possible future. And he can't leave Louisiana without finding out if second chances are all they're cracked up to be….

Find Debra here:

Buy A Father's Quest here: (Releases tomorrow, May 3rd)
Barnes and Noble

Buy Debra's short story A Hundred Years Or More here:

Captured in the wild, caged and sold to an unsuspecting family, a young parrot adjusts to his new world, his new life, with the help of a young girl. Delia names her companion in the sick room: Captain Jack. She spins him stories of great adventures on the high seas. She gives him the gift of language.

Theirs is a love story, not a romance. A unique perspective on life--and an extraordinary friendship--as observed through the keen eye of a narrator, who has heard it said time and time again, "Parrots live a hundred years or more."

GIVEAWAY: Debra is giving away one book from her 'Spotlight on Sentinel Pass' backlist to each of two lucky winners! Leave a comment or question and you'll be entered in the drawing.Winners will be announced here this Thursday, May 5th. Winners residing outside the U.S. will receive their chosen Sentinel Pass book in ebook format, while U.S. residents may choose between ebook and paperback. NOTE: You don't need to own an ebook reader! I don't (yet), but I've downloaded Amazon's free app which allows me to read Kindle books on my laptop. I also downloaded (for free) Adobe's Digital Reader, which brings ebooks to my computer. You're only a click and a win away from enjoying one of Debra's books :).