Current Release: Healing Notes
Describe your current release in two sentences?
After a horrific rape on tour, Rachel must reconcile who she is, what she wants, and how to get there. Maybe then she'll know how to be a part of the family she's always wanted.
Please describe your writing environment.
I work at home on the top floor of a three level townhouse. The wall behind my computer contains degrees, awards, and memntos from my husband. These remind me that perseverance wins the day. The bookshelves on either side of me contain my inspiration, my research for my novels, and pictures of family and friends.
What are you working on?
I am completing the third book in my Sweetwater Canyon series. It is expected to be out in June/July 2013. Then I'll be starting work on the final book in the series which is expected to be out in Fall 2013.
What do you feel blessed with?
I feel blessed that I have a husband who not only supports my writing career, but actually believes I'm a good writer. He is a professional editor and has written and published non-fiction books for more than 25 years. He is the only one who gets to read my first drafts. He is the only one I brainstorm with consistently. His support means the world to me.
What was your childhood ambition?
My first ambition was to be an actress. I realized that ambition on a small scale in my mid to late twenties when I did summer stock at Sundance in Utah, and played bit parts in three movies. However, in the end I didn't have the fire in my belly, or perhaps not the talent, to make it a permanent career. However, writing novels allows me to play all the parts AND direct the movie. It's heaven.
What is your favorite TV show?
My favorite TV show is The Voice. I love the blind auditions because they are based purely on talent, not on looks or age. The whole concept of having a personal mentor is huge and something I wish we could implement in the writing world.
What career fields have you worked in?
Before and during college I worked as a waitress, a secretary, and a camp counselor. My bachelor's and first master's degree was in psychology and counseling, and I did spend five years as a counselor. Then I spent 8 years in the crazy software industry throughout the merger-and-acquisiton 1980's. In the late 1990's I returned to school for a doctorate and spent the rest of my time in academia--first as a professor and then as a Dean and when I retired I was a Chief Technology Officer for a college in California. Now I consult for higher education around using open source software and developing curriculum using open educational resources.
What are your plans for the next year? Any books you are looking forward to?
Next year will be the first year I am working only part-time at a day job. This means more writing time for me. So, I'm hoping to get three books completed instead of my usual one to one and a half. In terms of other authors books I'm looking forward to reading, I have several favorite authors I'm always looking for their next book: Cathryn Cade, Jenna Bayley-Burke, Delilah Marvelle, Jessa Slade, and Terri Reed all immediately come to mind. However, there are plenty of others. I read about 100 books a year.
How was your road to publication?
It was long and windy. I began writing and publishing fiction in the late 1970's into the mid 1980's. I found some success with short stories in romance and SF with both literary magazines and trade magazines that took fiction. Then I had a twenty year hiatus where I focused on family and my academic career. When I returned to fiction in 2000, it took three completed books for me to learn the basics of novel craft before I got my first contract. I continue to learn and to get better with each book I write. I've now completed nine books, so I'm feeling like maybe I'm half way to finally being a decent novelist.
If you could time travel, where would you travel to and why?
I would definitely travel to about 50 years in the future. I want to see if we've figured out how to get along better, and if we've decided the right place for technology in our lives. If I get there and find the dystopian society some people predict, then I'm hurrying back to the present day and working my tail off to make sure that future doesn't actually happen.
If you could live in a world created by an author, which book / world would you jump into?
I would love to live in Anne McCaffrey's Pern, impress a dragon, and learn how to ride. I also wouldn't mind living in her world of the Rowan, where "talents" are highly prized. I've always loved books where women play a vital role in society, yet they find amazing mates to support them and love forever.
Thank you so much for having me and for allowing me to share a bit of myself with your readers.
The reason I write is for the readers. When I hear someone has enjoyed my book or really empathized with my characters, it makes my week. I want to share the triumphs of my characters with the hope that readers can be both entertained and maybe gain some hope and confidence in their own ability to overcome challenges and to find a happily ever after that fits best for them.