1. Before we start talking about your book, why don’t you tell everybody a little bit about yourself?
I started writing romance books in 2006 with my first two contracts coming two years later. In 2009 those books were released then it was a long dry spell of no contracts until 2011. From then until now I’ve added several books to my back list and will be releasing, through Secret Cravings Publishing (SCP), books every month to the end of this year.
2. Besides writing, what other things do you enjoy doing in your spare time?
I enjoy reading when I’ve got the time and watching a various range of shows of TV.
3. What is your daily routine as far as when you have an idea for your story?
If it’s a story I’m currently working on I’ll jot down a few notes for later when I’m writing. For a completely new story I’ll do the same except I’ll list the story points so I can review and revise as necessary.
4. Where do you get your ideas from?
Since I write series the ideas for the sequels come from, in the case of the regencies, the current story I’m working on. However, where I get the first story idea I wish I could tell you because I’ve got no idea, it just comes to me. With the A Jessica Sales Novel series the ideas can come from a word or a phrase I hear.
5. Out of all of the stories you’ve written so far, what would be your favorite and why?
I’d have to say the regency romantic suspense Don’t Cross the Countess is my favorite. The book is tentatively scheduled for an October 2013 release from Secret Cravings Publishing. It’s the first book in the Countess for the Crown series where the heroine and hero are trying to uncover traitors to the Crown during and after the war with Napoleon. As of this date I’ve finished the second book and will be starting the third later this year.
6. Tell us something funny about yourself that not a lot of people know about?
I don’t know if it’s funny or not but I like writing with a gold nib feather quill pen and a fountain pen. However, I do use a laptop to write my books.
7. Does any of the stories you’ve written based on real life experiences or basically just from imagination?
The only parts of my stories which might be from life experience are when I’m discussing a meal, other than that everything I write is pure imagination.
8. Does your ‘muse’ have a name and if so what is his/her name?
My muse is a figurine statue of a tri-color collie named Dakota.
9. What other genre besides the one you are writing about now would you like to venture into writing?
Someday I might try my hand a writing a western romance but not historical. I’m also playing around with an idea for a fantasy.
10. Who are your favorite authors that are out now?
I have too many to mention plus it’s always been my policy never to reveal their names for fear of leaving someone off the list.
11. Who is your favorite female and male characters from your books and why?
Miss Debbi Overstreet has got to be my favorite female while her love interest Lord Gerrard the male. They are both from my soon to be release regency, Spy Catcher, from SCP. Debbi is able to overcome any obstacle put in her path while Lord Gerrard, knowing of her birth, stands beside her.
12. What do you think is the hardest thing about being a writer?
Having my life controlled by the characters in the book I’m writing and this isn’t just the main ones either. There are times when a secondary steps in and starts demanding their own story, as if I don’t have enough books to write. And yes, they always win.
13. What advice would you give someone who wants to start off being a writer?
Write. Write. Then write some more. Join your local chapter of RWA or any writing organization. When possible attend a few conferences and take the workshops offered. Come home and write even more. Develop a tough skin for when you get the dreaded rejection letter/emails and rejoice when you get your first contract. Never give up if you want to be a writer.
14. If you hadn’t become a writer, what do you think you would be doing right now?
I’ve never really given it any thought. Ever since I could read this is what I’ve wanted to do.
15. What would be the perfect Romantic getaway?
I’ve no idea. Ever since my wife died thinking about a romantic getaway has been the furtherest thing from my mind. Instead now, I let my imagination take me and my readers on the getaway by creating the best story possible.
Well now that we got the question and answer out of the way…..why don’t you tell us about your latest story you have out now?
While acting as chaperone to Lady Aleece at a house party, little does lady’s maid Debbi realize how her life will change.
Not prepared to fall in love nor see a man who bears an uncanny resemblance to her, Debbi’s world begins to turn upside down.
After several attempts on her life, and a run-in with yet another look-alike, she uncovers her true heritage, as the unknown daughter of a countess. Having been raised and trained as a lady's maid, but educated alongside her employer, Debbi begins to wonder in which world she truly belongs.
Only when her new love's life is threatened does Debbie claim her rightful place and do what’s necessary to save him.
As the carriage gently rocked to a stop, Debbi was surprised when, not a footman as dictated but Mr. Thomas swung open the door. Patiently, she waited while he assisted his love out. She started to slide over to climb out unaided when he offer her his hand.
“Allow my assistance, Miss Overstreet.”
She felt her face warm when he called her by her new name. Quickly, she marshaled her thoughts, “Thank you sir,” she said settling her hand in his big, strong one.
“Please, Miss Overstreet, I insist you call me Thomas, as I have so requested from Lady Aleece.”
“If that be the case, then call me Debbi.” She paused, glancing around for the Earl and Countess but only saw Susan and Jeffrey approaching.
As they got close Debbi gave the appropriate curtsy according to their rank. Rising, she clasped her hands in front of her while Aleece warmly greeted them.
She tried not to act surprised when Susan stepped over and embraced her as she’d done with Aleece.
“Miss Overstreet, what a pleasure to finally meet you. Aleece has told me all about you, and I know we’ll get along famously.” She paused and turned to her brother. “Now let me introduce you to Jeff, but don’t worry— he may look dangerous but he’s harmless. His fiancée sees to that.”
After she was introduced to him, Debbi stepped back to survey her surroundings. Many times she’d come to house parties but always stayed in whatever coach was assigned and would enter the mansion by the servants entrance, making sure the trunks got to the appropriate rooms. This would be the first time she’d cross the threshold through the main doorway.
Without warning a shiver coursed down her spine, which unfortunately brought Aleece’s attention.
“Are you all right? It’s just like walking through any door. Take a deep breath,” she whispered.
“I don’t think it’s that, Lady Aleece. I fear I feel eyes on me, and I don’t know if it’s good or what,” she replied in a hushed tone.
Stepping back from the small group Debbi peered around, letting her gaze carry up to a window overlooking the forecourt. There she spied the reason for the unnerved feeling, the most dashingly handsome man she’d ever seen in her life. Even more, the sight of his appearance before he hid was exactly as she’d envisioned.
Taller than her, with pitch-black hair and broad shoulders, the brief sight of him set Debbie’s heart to fluttering. It was his lips deadly to a woman’s heart in the way he smiled down at her which unnerved her. Before he ducked behind a curtain she noticed he was dressed in a Bath superfine coat with a crisp white shirt and his cravat tied in the latest style.
After breaking her fast Debbi slipped into an old, well-worn grey gown she always wore when fishing. With her custom-made flies in their protective container she and Lady Aleece, who was dressed similarly, descended the stairs to the main floor, there to be met by Lord Gerrard and Mr. Thomas.
As she stepped onto the marble flooring Debbi couldn’t help but notice how her partner, Lord Gerrard not to mention Mr. Thomas were dressed.
Instead of the immaculately turned out gentleman of breeding she notice he was in more versatile attire. He’d chosen a dark brown bandana tied loosely around his neck. His shirt, of a fawn color, was open at the collar showing a hint of tan matching the hue of his face. With the morning already warming he’d eschewed a jacket in favor of a multi-pocketed vest. She could only guess they were for the necessary accessories required when fishing. Covering his legs a pair of heavy, dark brown britches and well-worn boots on his feet.
“Why, Lord Gerrard, if I didn’t know better you look like you’re ready for a day of fishing.”
“Why thank you and I must say your gown is interesting, to say the least,” he responded.
“Before my father took to his sick bed he had been nearly fanatical about fishing and I seem to have caught the same enthusiasm.”
“Then let us be off,” he said with a smile, offering his arm.
Once on the terrace they collected their fly rods and creels from the footman and joined Aleece and Mr. Thomas on the lawn awaiting the earl to announce the start of the contest.
Glancing around at the other guests, in search of one in particular, Debbi wondered how the others save for Susan and Jeff would survive the rigors of this activity. When she spied the man, Debbi moved in such a way that Lord Gerrard was between her and Thompson. This way she could scrutinize him without appearing obvious. After a minute of studying him she turned to Aleece.
“Yes, you’re correct. If I didn’t know better we could almost be brother and sister. Not that I’d want to be related to him in any way.”
When queried by not only Lord Gerrard but also Mr. Thomas she promised to explain at the first opportunity when they were in private.
“I still don’t understand about this person claiming to being my husband,” Debbi said taking a bite of toast.
“Mayhap I can answer that particular question for Lady Debbi.” The speaker then set her attention to the Duke of Carlisle. “I pray you will forgive me for this untimely intrusion but I fear the time is right to set the record straight.”
The duke, already having stood when he noticed the lady enter, smiled, nodded then walked over and offered his arm to escort her to where Debbi now was standing.
“Lady Debbi Overstreet, I have the honor of introducing the Countess of Bowes, your mother.”
On hearing the last two words Debbi grabbed for the table, missed and started to collapse to the floor. All that prevented her from doing so was a quick-acting Langdonly who caught her.
With a thank you smile she steadied herself and took her seat.
“But…but I’m an orphan so you can’t be my mother.”
“No Lady Debbi, what the Countess says is true,” the duchess said then glanced over her shoulder to her husband. “Brandy,” she ordered.
Simon walked to the sideboard and poured a little in a glass then slightly diluted it with water. Returning he passed the glass to his wife.
“Here, take a few sips.”
After downing half the drink Debbi peered at the woman, “I still don’t understand, why now and why wasn’t I told years ago,” Debbi paused to glare at the woman claiming to be her mother.
“It was all done for your safety. Now sit while I and Jenelle explain,” the duchess insisted. Then added, “all your questions will be answered, of that I am positive.”
Over the next hour the duchess and countess explained to Debbi why everything had been done the way it was. This time however, Jenelle didn’t leave out how she became pregnant and who the father was.
“Then I must leave now for this monster and his son must not only be stopped but punished for what they’ve done,” Debbi said as she rose, headed for the stairs and her room to change.
Secret Cravings Publishing-