1. Before we start talking about your book, why don’t you tell everybody a little bit about yourself?
Well, I live in Ohio with my husband and four sons. I started writing little stories when I was young but never finished any of them. As I got older I continued to dabble with writing and ended up majoring in English in College. I love all things paranormal, always have, I even took Vampires in Literature in College, one of our text books was Bram Stoker’s Dracula- so awesome.
2. Besides writing, what other things do you enjoy doing in your spare time?
Reading, crocheting, collecting rocks and witches, bargain hunting at thrift stores and antique shops, and my favorite- spending time with my loved ones.
3. What is your daily routine as far as when you have an idea for your story?
I don’t have routines when it comes to writing, I don’t work that way. As soon as I put rules in play I get blocked.
4. Where do you get your ideas from?
Everywhere. Stories on the news, dreams, people watching, life experiences… they all can inspire my writing.
5. Out of all of the stories you’ve written so far, what would be your favorite and why?
Illuminated is my first so it will always hold a special place in my heart.
6. Tell us something funny about yourself that not a lot of people know about?
The day of my first grade pictures I decided to cut my bangs-OFF…
7. Does any of the stories you’ve written based on real life experiences or basically just from imagination?
I think each of my characters have a bit of me in them and there are two things in Illuminated that really happened but I decided a long time ago not to reveal what they are.
8. Does your ‘muse’ have a name and if so what is his/her name?
No muse, I must have scared him/her away…
9. What other genre besides the one you are writing about now would you like to venture into writing?
I am a paranormal girl, I believe you should write what you love and there have been only a handful of books I’ve read and enjoyed that weren’t in my genre. I like going between YA and adult content but for the time being anyway I will stay with the supes.
10. Who are your favorite authors that are out now?
Melissa Marr, Carrie Jones, Charlaine Harris, Garcia/Stohl, Cassandra Clare, Stephenie Meyer, Richelle Mead, Suzanne Collins, Lesley Livingston, Alyson Noel, Claudia Gray. I could keep going but we would be here a very long time.
11. Who is your favorite female and male characters from your books and why?
Lyla and Trajen hands down. Lyla is so much fun to write, she’s bad but you know she has a good side too. As for Trajen he is the guy I would have killed for to have known in high school.
12. What do you think is the hardest thing about being a writer?
Rejection and bad reviews.
13. What advice would you give someone who wants to start off being a writer?
Start writing. You can learn the ropes as you go, ask a lot of questions to anyone who will answer, but just write.
14. If you hadn’t become a writer, what do you think you would be doing right now?
I have a full time job I love so if I hadn’t published Illuminated I’d be doing that.
15. What would be the perfect Romantic getaway?
Destination wise, Europe (start in Ireland and work our way to Italy) but I would be happy spending the day in bed.
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?
Jillian Anthony is less than unpopular - she is a total social non-entity. Her sister hates her, she has no friends, and a boyfriend is completely unimaginable.
But all that changes her senior year when Jillian is struck by lightning and discovers she is filled with powers beyond her imagination. Her new abilities thrust her into a world she never knew existed, a world containing friends and romance.
Everything seems to be going in the right direction until one of her new friends dies and Jillian is blamed for his death. Now she has to find a way to control her powers and prove her innocence before she loses everything and everyone she loves.
Barnes and Noble… http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/illuminated-gretchen-roberts/1116796430?ean=2940045235310
Sweet Cravings… http://store.sweetcravingspublishing.com/index.php?main_page=book_info&products_id=182&zenid=8c0f45d99ddeb542e4f4e37835993321
The trees surrounding our property were already painted in rich shades of scarlet, gold, and umber announcing fall’s approach. Under the full moon’s bright paleness they looked magical. The slight breeze rustled the leaves, bringing with it a slight bite, goose-bumping my bare arms. Belly full, I leaned back on the wicker chaise, relaxed and content. I smelled the faint scent of lilacs still blooming from our neighbor’s yard. This was my favorite time of year. The days were still warm, the nights cool, beautiful landscapes, and exquisite scents filled the air as summer faded into fall.
A strange flicker of light halfway down the hill making up the northern side of our property caught my eye. Surely I’d imagined it, didn’t I? My breath hitched as my heart raced with adrenaline. The unknown always caused the same nervous reaction in me. Sitting forward and straining to see any movement, I didn’t take my eyes away from the hillside. After a few minutes of nothing, I began to relax again. Guess it was my imagination after all. A shooting star blazed across the midnight sky. I quickly whispered a wish on the falling star.
From the corner of my eye I saw another flicker, a little farther down the hill. I knew I wasn’t imagining it this time. It was too big and bright to be a firefly. Besides, lightning bugs were rarely out this late and I was pretty sure I couldn’t see one from that distance anyway. I sat up and squinted as hard as I could. In the darkness I couldn’t make out even a shadow of movement, there was only the slowly moving flicker.
A low rumble across the valley broke my concentration. I didn’t remember rain in the forecast. On the horizon I saw distant flashes of lightning illuminating the hills. My heartbeat was erratic—racing, then slowing, before speeding up again. The nervous energy was replaced by anticipation. The little hairs on my arms and back of my neck raised as the storm’s arrival charged the air. A surprising array of emotions washed over me as the storm neared. Excitement, longing, joy, inspiration, passion, hunger, and triumph mingling with a touch of sadness and pain. The consistent, but barely noticeable tingles strengthened and with each instant, sprinted through my veins.
Every nerve was exposed, ready to devour each sensation the storm whispered to me. I’d never felt so good about myself. All inhibitions were gone in an instant, each fear vanished, every drop of sadness replaced with peace.
Drawn by an unseen force, I stood up and walked down the stairs from the wraparound porch and onto the dewy grass. I smiled as the first few cool raindrops kissed my skin. The air grew heavy with electricity. The familiar scent of dirty air washed clean swirled around me as the falling rain cleansed my body and soul.
The night lit up as an amazing bolt cracked, splitting the heavens. I spun around like I did when I was little, until I couldn’t fight the dizziness any more. As I lost my balance and tumbled to the ground, laughter ripped from my throat. Another bolt shot across the sky illuminating the hillside so I could finally see what the flicker was, or rather who.