Wednesday 19 December 2012

The Next Big Thing Blog Hop Interview with ME!

I've been invited to participate in a blog hop where I answer interview questions sent to me by another author. So let's get started!

1) What is the working title of your book?


2) Where did the idea come from for your book?

I had a vision of a witch who didn't know she was a witch. In my vision, she brought her sister back from the dead, pissing off a Reaper. It took off from there.

3) What genre does your book fall under?

YA Paranormal/Urban Fantasy/Horror

4) Which actors would you choose to play in your movie rendition?

Ooh, fun! Okay, there are four lead roles, but I'll just name two of them, since I haven't found the perfect matches for the other two.

My ideal Zadie would be Kelli Berglund

And my ideal Gavin would be Douglas Booth

Don't they look dreamy together? *sigh*

5) What is the one sentence synopsis of your book?

Sixteen year old Zadie brings her sister back to life, inadvertently angering her sister's reaper, now intent on claiming both girls.

6) Will your book be self-published or represented by an agency?

My book is being published by Month9Books in May of next year.

7) How long did it take you to write the first draft of your manuscript?

About seven months (with some breaks in between).

8) What other books would you compare this story to?

I'm sure there must be other Reaper books out there, I just don't know of them. If I were to compare it to anything, I'd have to name the television show Supernatural.

9) Who or what inspired you to write the book?

I blame my muse. Always.

10) What else about your book might pique the reader’s interest?

Well, there are two hot guys in it. How can you resist that? ;)

Now I'm supposed to pass the torch to five other authors. Here's my list:

Lisa M. Basso
Heather L. Reid
Michelle E. Reed
Stuart R. West
Sage Collins

I can't promise that they'll participate, but I hope that they do. :)

Author Update: Dead Heat by Lisa Nowak

It's so great when I can welcome back a guest on the blog to talk about new projects. Today we're catching up with author Lisa Nowak who's here to talk about her novel, DEAD HEAT.

Hi, Lisa! Welcome back to We Do Write. Tell us about your new book, DEAD HEAT. What's it about?

I’m feeling terribly lazy today, so I’ll just give you the Amazon book description:

Alex is a machine whisperer. He can tell what’s wrong with a broken-down car with a touch. But his gift can’t save him from the brutality of his meth-addict father. For two years, Alex experienced kindness through Cole, his mentor. Now Cole’s dead, and the violence in Alex’s life is escalating.

When Cole reappears as a ghost, Alex clings to the tenuous link. Then he learns Cole might’ve sacrificed his chance to cross over. Jade, the first girl to look beyond Alex’s past, assures him Cole can reach the Other Side—if Alex escapes from his dad. But a previous terrifying attempt has convinced Alex it’s impossible. Unless he can find the courage to try, his friend may be earthbound forever.

What inspired you to write this book?

That’s a funny story, actually. Dead Heat never would’ve come to be had it not been for an agent rejecting my book Driven because it “wasn’t edgy enough.” Teens, according to him, won’t buy a book unless it’s edgy. I reacted with an, “I’ll show you edgy, buster,” and Dead Heat was born. I still think his opinion was bogus, but I owe him one for shoving me in a direction I never would’ve taken on my own.

Without giving to much away, what's your favorite aspect of the book?

There are two. The first is that it deals with child abuse and that controversial topic of what to do when you think reporting it might result in more harm than good to a child. I know this isn't a popular subject, but I think it's realistic, and it was intriguing to me to explore it. I didn’t set out to do that, but the plot forced me to come up with a believable explanation for why a good man would allow such a thing to continue. Second, Dead Heat features a protagonist with a learning disability, and the story is told in first person through his slang and somewhat limited vocabulary. This is just Alex's voice (imagine a modern day Huck Finn) and I didn't think much about it until my editor told me how glad she was to see someone up-ending the stereotype about kids like Alex.

Finish this sentence: If I'm not writing, I'm ...

Messing around on Facebook. No, seriously, I have a small landscaping business, so except in the winter, running that is my “day job.” I’ve also been know to do a little welding, teach classes on indie publishing, and give yodeling lessons to cats. Okay, that last one might not be completely true.

Tell us where we can find DEAD HEAT.

You can find me at:


Author Bio:
In addition to being a YA author, Lisa is a retired amateur stock car racer, an accomplished cat whisperer, and a professional smartass. She writes coming-of-age books about kids in hard luck situations who learn to appreciate their own value after finding mentors who love them for who they are.

Tuesday 18 December 2012

Interview with Ashley Hodges Bazer

Help me in welcoming author Ashley Hodges Bazer to the blog today. We'll be chatting with Ashley about her novel ASYLUM.

Hi, Ashley!Tell us a bit about yourself.

I am a pastor’s wife and a stay-at-home mom of three. My children, affectionately referred to as “the Dingoes”, are six, five, and two. Before I married, I earned my degree in theatre from Arizona State University. I was a stage manager for Disneyland’s entertainment department, and later, a producer for Focus on the Family’s daily radio broadcast with Dr. James Dobson.

How long have you been writing?

I’ve been writing since the sixth grade. I mostly wrote short stories or poems to entertain friends. The idea of writing novels never really suited me until about seven years ago when I was pregnant with my son. I had just left the career field, gotten married (to a pastor!), moved across the country, and found out I was going to be a mom…all at once. My identity took a major hit. Through writing, I found me again.

Tell us about ASYLUM: THE CIRCEAE TALES. What’s the story about?

Asylum is actually a standalone novel in a series titled The Circeae Tales. I like to say it’s “classic sci-fi meets a Christian worldview.” The Circeae system is embroiled in a cosmic war between the Progressive Legacy, the iron-fisted government, and the Ghosts, a band of freedom fighters dedicated to protecting the Logia. The Logia are gifted followers of Prince Ternion, the former ruler of the Circeae system.

Chase Leighton is a captain in the Ghost ranks. He is a Logia, and married to Trista. The Ghosts receive a distress call, prompting Trista to assist. She is captured by the Legacy and handed over to their Experimental Medicine agency, where she is publically declared dead as a result of formal execution. Dr. Terces, the head of ExMed, intends to remove Trista’s memories, transforming her into a servant of the Legacy.

The Ghosts discover the truth behind the Legacy’s ploy. Naturally, Chase wants to rescue his wife. After receiving a signal from Trista’s beacon, Chase and his men are ambushed and arrested, then sentenced to the Straightjacket, a prison facility for the criminally insane. They face months of brutal “therapy” before they decide to riot and take over the ship.

As Chase plans the men’s escape, he learns that Trista is on board. But when they come face-to-face, she calls herself Krissa. Chase struggles with learning about the identity the Legacy created in Krissa and trying to reach the woman he knows as his wife.

How did the idea of the story come to you?

As I often do, I was daydreaming about a couple of characters—a man and a woman conversing. The man knew the woman, although she didn’t know him. Why would that be? Amnesia? Brain injury of some sort? I’ve always had a morbid fascination with the idea of someone being treated for mental illness who was perfectly healthy. As this daydream conversation developed, that fascination began to surface. The man, being treated in an asylum, was perfectly sane, while the woman, believing she was perfectly sane, was actually the one suffering. That twist brought about the rest of the story.

Do you have a critique group/partner or beta readers, or do you self-edit?

We live in a small, remote town, so I don’t have the opportunity to meet with a critique group. I have used beta readers, and they have been very helpful. I’m finding the best thing for me—following beta readers—is to put my manuscript away and come back to it after a month or two. At that point, I have a more objective eye.

Are you a planner or a pantser?

Definitely a pantser. I don’t write chronologically. I usually start somewhere in the middle and flesh it out from there.

What’s the hardest part of writing for you?

Revising. As I am writing, I have to constantly remind myself to just get it down on the page. I can go back later and rework things. But sometimes, I get caught up in the tediousness of revising and want to walk away. And a lot of times, I do for a week or two.

Confidence. I’ve written six novels, but I still hesitate to classify myself as a writer. Writers know what they are doing. They know the ins and outs of the craft, yet I feel like I’m still learning. I have to remind myself that even the best writers are still learning.

What do you absolutely have to have nearby when writing?

A cup of vanilla flavored tea and my copy of Flip Dictionary by Barbara Ann Kipfer.

If you could have any super power, what would it be?

The ability to travel through time and space. How neat it would be to visit 15th century England, or to witness the signing of the Declaration of Independence. To see planets with many moons. To experience the future before it happens. It would be a great power, and as they say, “With great power comes great responsibility.”

What's the weirdest thing you've googled?

I don’t know if it’s weird, but definitely most bothersome—anatomy of a spider. I don’t like having creepy crawly things larger than life on my computer screen. But in my young adult novel, Xadrez, one of my characters transforms into a spider…so it had to be done.

Quick writing test! Use the following words in a sentence: rock concert, emu, and spilling.

My leather pants are ruined from spilling soda all over them last night at the rock concert because an emu somehow escaped from the zoo and decided he wanted to rock out with the rest of us.

Finish this sentence: If I'm not writing, I'm probably ...

Playing with the Dingoes or crocheting. I love to crochet and watch TV—namely, Doctor Who or Firefly.

Here’s the part where you thank the people who are supporting you. Let's hear your shout outs.

I’m thankful for the folks at WestBow Press and the Munce Group. I am published because I won their 2012 Writing Contest in July. My mom, Janie—to whom Asylum is dedicated—for reading my manuscript and telling me she loves what I’ve written! My brother, Bryan, for making an awesome map of my universe. My husband, Gary, for watching over the Dingoes when I want to write. My Dingoes for their love and support and superior marketing skills. My friends who have read and loved the book. And my readers for taking a chance by picking up a copy of Asylum. Also, Dorothy, thanks to you for supporting budding authors like me by giving us these opportunities to be part of your awesome blog.

You're very welcome! And finally, where can people find you and your book online?

My website is We have some exciting interactive updates coming soon. My book is available through most online retail booksellers such as or, or through the publisher at

Monday 17 December 2012

Interview with Alison Stone

Author Alison Stone is with us today to talk about her novel TOO CLOSE TO HOME. She lives in New York and is represented by Jenn Schober of Spencerhill Associates.
Welcome, Alison. How long have you been writing?

I first got the idea to write soon after my oldest was born. He'll be seventeen in January! However, in my defense, I started writing for the children's market and local publications before I finally got the never to try my hand at novel-length fiction. In the seventeen years since, I've produced three more children and many more manuscripts. :)

Tell us about TOO CLOSE TO HOME. What’s the story about?

I think the easiest way to tell you about TOO CLOSE TO HOME is to share the blurb:

They say you can never go home. If you do, better watch your back.
Ten years ago, after her father’s gruesome death was ruled a suicide, Kathryn McNabb left her hometown, vowing never to return. And never to let anything—business or personal—break her heart.

Now an overachieving manufacturing engineer, she thrives on order, control and solitude. But an unexpected inheritance makes her the co-owner of the company her father founded, forcing her to face the ghosts of her past. Including Ben Nowak, childhood friend, secret crush, and son of the man who ruined her father.

Ben hadn’t planned on returning home either, but with his own father’s death it falls to him to continue the family legacy. When he learns Kathryn plans to sell the plant out from under him, his quest takes on new urgency—Midport Industries is the main source of jobs in town.

Butting heads strike sparks of attraction that entangle business and pleasure into a hopeless knot. And someone is watching. Someone with a darker reason to prevent the deal from going through. Someone desperate enough to kill…

How did the idea of the story come to you?

Great question. In my former life, I was a manufacturing engineer for an automotive parts supplier. One day, a worker on the plant floor told me that someone had drown in one of the tanks because of a drug deal gone bad. I have no idea if he was pulling my leg or not, but the idea stuck with me. TOO CLOSE TO HOME is centered around a manufacturing facility in a small town. The heroine soon learns something beyond manufacturing is going on in the plant. This was a fun story to write because I was able to draw on my experience as an engineer. (I promise I left out the boring parts!)

Do you have a critique group/partner or beta readers, or do you self-edit?

I have a few close writer friends who read my work and give me feedback. I love having "fresh eyes" look at my manuscript before I submit. I am often too close to the story to see if it all gels.

Are you a planner or a pantser?

One would think I was a complete planner considering my training as an engineer, however I tend to do a little of both. I have an idea and a few plot points and I go from there. This leads to A LOT of rewriting. I am trying to learn to plan more and save myself time (and frustration.)

What’s the hardest part of writing for you?

Honestly, it's the sitting down and doing it. I will find ten other things I'd rather do--laundry, errands, dishes, etc--before I will sit down. Once I sit down and open the file, I get right into the story. Now why don't I just do that to begin with? Procrastination is not my friend.

What do you absolutely have to have nearby when writing?

Either coffee or tea. I usually have one cup of coffee to kick-start my day, then I drink tea for the rest of the day.

If you could have any super power, what would it be?

Is curing cancer a super power? Probably not, huh? In that case, I'd love to be able to fly. I hate to fly in planes, so maybe being able to fly on my own would be a useful power.

What's the weirdest thing you've googled?

I can't think of anything really weird, but whenever I think of the inherent "danger" of googling, I think of a local sporting goods store in town. It's called Dick's Sporting Goods. (You probably know where I'm going with this!) A few years back I googled "Dicks" and yeah, I got an eyeful. Now whenever I use Google, I make sure I'm more specific in my search phrases. Seriously, what did I expect?

Quick writing test! Use the following words in a sentence: porch, bursting, and imagination.

Bursting with nervous energy, I tried to rein in my imagination as the porch step creaked under my weight. :D

Finish this sentence: If I'm not writing, I'm probably ...

...driving my kids all over town.

Here’s the part where you thank the people who are supporting you. Let's hear your shout outs.

Writing can be a roller coaster ride. I am very fortunate to have Jenn Scober, my agent, in my corner. She took me on as a client nearly five years before I sold. We came close more than once--but close only counts in horseshoes, right? I am so grateful she stuck with me and encouraged me until we got "The Call." In less than 13 months, we sold 3 books. I'm keeping my fingers crossed that this is just the beginning. And I'm grateful to the editors at Samhain and Harlequin who took a chance on my books.

I also have the best family. My hubby supports my writing career 100% and my kids cheer me on every step of the way.

And finally, where can people find you and your book online?

A current list of my books can be found on my website: I'm also on Twitter at @Alison_Stone or Facebook at
Too Close to Home is available at the following online locations:
Samhain Publishing:
Barnes and Noble:

It's also available at many other fine eBook retailers.

One more thing before I go. I enjoy to give books as gifts during the holidays. Leave me a comment telling me what gift you enjoy giving and/or tell me about the best gift you've ever received. One lucky person (selected at random) will win an eBook copy of Too Close to Home from Samhain, Amazon, or Barnes and Noble. (Winner's choice)

Thanks for chatting with us today, Alison. It was great getting to know more about you and your book.

Thanks so much, Dorothy, for having me as a guest.

Saturday 15 December 2012

Interview with Sarah Billington

Sarah Billington is an Australian writer and editor who likes to write stories with love, laughs, suspense and zombies. Sometimes all in the same story. Her favouritest thing to write about are those horrendously awkward moments that come with being a teenager. Or a human being. Sarah was extremely accident-prone and klutzy as a kid and teen, so her cup runneth over with experiences of horrendously awkward moments to draw from in her writing. Thankfully, she has grown out of her klutziness. Mostly.

Welcome, Sarah! How long have you been writing?


Tell us about THE KISS OFF. What’s the story about?

The Kiss Off is about Poppy Douglas, a rather opinionated girl who writes music and sings it on Youtube. She writes an angry rock song, called The Kiss Off, about her stupid ex boyfriend who cheated on her with a friend, and it gets shared and shared and shared and goes viral. A local rock band (with a super-cute lead singer) ask if they can play it at a gig and before they know it, they're signed to a label, recording an album and Poppy's hurt feelings and anger are all over the radio, at the top of the charts, and everyone wants to know the private details about where the song came from.

How did the idea of the story come to you?

I don't know exactly where the idea came from, the whole rockstar and fame aspect was a subplot of a different book I was writing, in which Poppy was actually a blogger and all the kids at her school caught on to the juicy stuff in the blog about people they knew. But I wanted to make the story bigger. I was watching a lot of Youtube videos at the time, of these normal people who I just really liked and it seemed hundreds of thousands of other people really liked as well. And some of them occasionally wrote and performed in their bedrooms or living rooms, silly songs. I thought to myself that Poppy could most definitely do that. Plus I don't know many books written about songwriters and this modern age in which ordinary people can become famous all over the world just for being themselves.

Do you have a critique group/partner or beta readers, or do you self-edit?

I don't have an official critique group or partner, but I definitely have other people, other writers I respect read my work and give me feedback. It has to be HONEST feedback. I also have a weekly lunch-writing date with a friend and we discuss our plots and what we're struggling with and how to tackle scenes and if what we've written is awesome or stupid. I really value these lunch dates as a part of my process now.

Are you a plotter or a pantser?

I'm a plotser! Sort of. I have been a pantser in the past, and as a consequence have written a couple of books twice, because the first version was a mess and it was easier just to rewrite the majority of it and add in the odd bit that DID work from the original version.

This is a slow, very unproductive and exhausting way to work, let me tell ya.

So I'm working really hard on structure and plotting the book out ahead of time, but awesome things can happen in the writing process where one comment or line you've written can take you off on a tangent you didn't expect. Lots of the time this can be really bad and has to be cut because you lead yourself to a dead end or a hell of boring writing, but sometimes it can open up potential storylines and characters that you hadn't planned from the beginning. It keeps the writing process fresh and fun when that happens, rather than just working off notes.

What’s the hardest part of writing for you?

I work as a freelance editor, mostly working on big picture plot and character and setting stuff (as opposed to spelling and grammar) so my job is to be really critical of other authors' manuscripts and help them spot missed opportunities and what's not quite coming across as realistic yet but has potential etc. I'm VERY critical, because if I don't do it, the reader will, and that's the worst thing that can happen for a wrter.

Because of this highly critical mindset, the hardest part of writing for me is second-guessing myself. These days I have some trouble switching off that editor and just letting myself write, letting the words that end up on the screen be as horrible and cliche as they need to be in order to have something to fix later.

What do you absolutely have to have nearby when writing?

Wow. Tough question. Um...nothing? The only thing I really need is my computer. My netbook, preferably. I don't need a drink or music playing or my dog at my feet - actually, it's better if I DON'T have my dog at my feet because they generally want you to pat them. And when I'm writing, my hands are busy, you know?

If you could have any super power, what would it be?

I want a Time Turner, like Hermione. It may not be a super power, but it's kind of super, right? I want to be able to do all the work and all the fun stuff too and not have to choose one or the other. You know, Christmas is coming up you guys. I'm just saying.

What's the weirdest thing you've googled?

There was one that I remember thinking "wow, I'm gonna be put on a watch list for this one" but I canNOT remember what it was. Since then it might be just different (potential) causes of the apocalypse. And how people get amnesia. Pretty boring ones, really.

Quick writing test! Use the following words in a sentence: butter, activity, and repeat.

"No..." I said. "You want me to do what now?"
He shrugged, arms crossed. "It's the only way."
I stared at myself in the mirror and grimaced.
"I don't know what you're complaining about, you organised the activity, didn't you?"
"Yeah, but-"
My hairdresser poured the melted butter over my head and I squealed as the warm liquid slid down my hair and dripped onto my shoulders. "Rub it in," he said. "And repeat."

A friend of mine dressed up as the Joker (in his nurse's uniform) recently and had to put canola oil in her hair and green hairspray to get just the right freaktastic look. So that's what I was thinking of. :)

That was supposed to be one sentence using all three words, but that's okay.

Finish this sentence: If I'm not writing, I'm probably ...

Watching TV pilots. I love new shows, shows I've never heard of and know nothing about, watching how the writers set up the premise in a way that will sustain a whole season so well - or not so well.

Here’s the part where you thank the people who are supporting you. Let's hear your shout outs.

My family are always going to be my shout outs. Hazell, Colin and Kate. I've been writing and reading forever, and had my head in other worlds for just as long and they've been very patient with me all these years. And my friend Caitlin (weekly writing date) who helps me work out plot points. And my university course, NMIT's Bachelor of Writing & Publishing which, because of a major assignment about digital media, got me started on the whole ebook thing in the first place.

And finally, where can people find you and your books online?

My website:


The money's in! Poppy's royalties for penning the accidental hit song
The Kiss Off that shot her boyfriend's band to super-stardom are in
and she knows EXACTLY what she's doing with it.


“See that?” I said, pointing at the feature band name on the flyer.
“Academy of Lies are headlining Bay Fest over in Tallulah Shores.”
“They’re headlining? Are you serious?” Mads said.
I grinned. “Pack your bags, baby.”
“Shut up.”
“Two words: road trip,” I said. “One word: camping.”
“Shut up.”
“Five wor — is it five? Yeah — five words: One week by the sea.”
“Shut up.”
“Four more words-”
“Enough with the words already.”
“I’m nearly done,” I said, “four final words: you, me and Van.”
She bit her bottom lip, staring at me when her hands started wringing
in front of her again. And she started bouncing.
“No,” I said, “no, no. You shut up. You start screaming again and
you’re not coming.”
Instead, Mads squeezed me in a bear hug and planted a kiss on my
cheek. “I’m going to Babe Fest. I’m going to Babe Fest!”
Bay Music Festival. Of all the nicknames in the world, it could have
been a lot worse.

THE KISS OFF 2 will include:

A road trip with an unexpected passenger.
The realization too late that they don't actually like camping.
Accidental topless swimming.
Paparazzi punch ups.
A news-worthy (yet totally false) love triangle.
Obsessed fan girls.
A stalker.
And an overwhelming request from someone super-famous.

THE KISS OFF 2: Coming 2013.

Friday 14 December 2012

Interview with Carlyle Labuschagne

It's cold outside! Stay inside and keep warm by cozying up with an interview. We're talking with author Carlyle Labuschagne about her book, THE BROKEN DESTINY.

Welcome to We Do Write, Carlyle. Tell us a bit about yourself.

I live in South Africa, I love nature and trees. I should not eat so much chocolate. I have two young boys, I write more than I read. I married my high-school sweetheart.

How long have you been writing?

Since the age of twelve.

Tell us about THE BROKEN DESTINY. What’s the story about?

The Broken Destiny is mostly about a girl who needs to believe in herself in order to unleash her powers - to fullfill a prohecy she does not believe in. Her kind is Third generation of genetically enhanced humans built to withstand the last years on Earth. They have been exciled to a Planet called Poseidon where Ava starts to feel emotions - that are unlike her kind, this is when it all goes really horrible for her. Ultimately she will withstand everything and anything thrown in her path to unleash the weapon within her soul that could save her dying race and those in the Galaxy like hers. Its about choosing love over everything else. Its about growth and the struggle to find the light trough the dark. Her Destiny is to rise above the fall!

How did the idea of the story come to you?

I've always had crazy stories in my head since a young age - my poor barbies went through a lot madness to satisfy these fantasies!!! LOL

Well I just sat down and wrote - it evolved from there - I am a huge science fiction fan , so there was no argument as to witch genre to write. I have a huge love for dystopian stories so ultimately that came into play as well. I guess the main character evolved from my emotional need to heal and the need to find others to relate to, to tell a story other girls or boys could heal from - to know that everything will always be okay and that they are never alone in what ever struggle they are going through.

Do you have a critique group/partner or beta readers, or do you self-edit?

I could not self edit! Never - first off English is not my first language. I had two editors on this book. A copy editor, then a proofreader and that turned into more editing. and while editing I rewrite - I try not to - but I do all the time!

Are you a planner or a pantser?

I don't plan at all - I tried that , and well my story went full circle. My story evolves as I write. But with book two I just dotted down things that need a conclusion or explanation from book one.

What do you absolutely have to have nearby when writing?

Music! and cappuccino. A Thesaurus and pen and paper.

If you could have any super power, what would it be?

I'd have Ava's power - she is a mind-shifter. What's that you ask? Well you'll have to follow The Broken Series to find out!

What's the weirdest thing you've googled?

Well to me nothing is weird, but probably all my science stuff - like how to extract water from air, the magnetic field collapsing, bombs - Hope the government doesnt think me a threat.

Quick writing test! Use the following words in a sentence: detective, distinct, and dinosaur.

The markings were distinct , the detective knew for sure , that this was indeed a sign of a living dinosaur amongst then, but who would have had the ordasity to carry on experiments that were illegal?

Finish this sentence: If I'm not writing, I'm probably ...

outside with the kids.

Here’s the part where you thank the people who are supporting you. Let's hear your shout outs.

There are way to many people to thank. Id thank everyone who has featured me on their blog in the last year, everyone sharing, liking my Status . Voting on my book , review requests. My editors, all my online friends!

And finally, where can people find you and your books online?

Thursday 13 December 2012

Interview with Kerry Dwyer

Please help me welcome author Kerry Dwyer to the blog. Kerry's here to talk about her book, RAMBLINGS IN IRELAND.

Welcome, Kerry. Tell us a bit about yourself.

I live in south west France with my husband and daughter, My husband is French. We live in the countryside surrounded by vineyards and sunflower fields. There is a small general grocers, a tobacconist and a bakery near my home. My daughter has just started boarding at her school during the week. She leaves on Monday mornings and comes home on Friday nights. I miss her although I am getting used to it. I work teaching English as a foreign language to adults. I like the job. I wish I was as good at correcting my own written English as I am at correcting other people's. Every day, if it is not raining heavily, I take a walk around the block (about 4 kilometres to see how the vines sunflowers and other crops are doing. At weekends I like to walk near the estuary or further afield I write about my walk on a blog for English ex-pats. For entertainment I regularly go to a Jazz club. I write about that on my own blog.

How long have you been writing?

I won a poetry competition when I was seven or eight, It was a poem about my cat called Mr Humphrey. I haven't been writing consistently since then but I have always done some. Most of it has been for my own pleasure. I have written short stories, flash fiction as well as technical documents for my work.

Tell us about RAMBLINGS IN IRELAND. What’s the story about?

Ramblings In Ireland is not a guide book. You will not read about the fauna and flora of Ireland or find maps of trails in this book. The book follows one particular journey. It is our journey through the West of Ireland and to a closer understanding of each other. The walking trails form the thread on which I hang memories of the far and recent past along with my obsessions and quirks. There is plenty of description of the wonderful Irish countryside, the people we met, pubs we went to. Guinness we drank. but also ramblings about the conversations we had and the cultural differences we experienced.

How did the idea of the story come to you?

When Bertrand and I were on our holiday we talked of doing a scrapbook or a diary of our holiday. We took lots of pictures and I started to think about what I would write. As ever I was distracted in my thoughts and went of at tangents. The book started out to be the diary or travelogue of that holiday. It evolved to include ramblings about all sorts of other things.

Do you have a critique group/partner or beta readers, or do you self-edit?

I belong to a small critique group and I have other beta readers. They do not edit or proofread. They look at the story and tell me how it hangs together, what would make it better whether the characters still sound like me, etc. For proofreading and editing I would always recommend a professional. I used Joel Canfield of Someday Box.

Are you a plotter or a pantser?

I have a very sketchy outline before I start so I guess that makes me mostly a panster.

What’s the hardest part of writing for you?

Sitting down and doing it. I am very easily distracted. I am much better at writing when there is no one in the house and I have no distractions. If I have something else to do I need to do that first otherwise the though that it needs doing distracts me.
The other thing I find really difficult is to let a chapter go. I keep going back and rewriting early parts before I have finished the story.

What do you absolutely have to have nearby when writing?

Nothing really. I can write on a train as easily as at home. I need my PC or my laptop, whichever I am writing on and my glasses. I don't have a lucky mascot or require cups of coffee. I do like to be able to get up and pace about. If I am writing at home I have a flip chart that I can draw on or make notes on if I want to.

If you could have any super power, what would it be?

Chocolate resistance, on second thoughts no too far fetched ! Let's go for Shapeshifter,

LOL, love it! What's the weirdest thing you've googled?

You know in your blog statistics you can look at what search terms people use to get to your page ? Well I often try googling those to see what they were actually looking for, The most recent of those was '1400's sluts' I found nothing and I didn't find myself. I wonder if they were looking for the year or the number or something entirely different. I google strange things for research as well like 'how do I kill someone with a car?' I do like the silly things that google does with its search pages like when you key in the word 'askew' and the search comes up askew, Or 'Where is Chuck Norris ? '- Go on try it! I know! It takes very little to keep me amused.

Quick writing test! Use the following words in a sentence: photographer, incandescent, cramps.

Poison wiped her tears and swatted away the photographer with his incandescent ceaseless flashes, Lux was dead, now what would become of The Cramps ?

Finish this sentence: If I'm not writing, I'm probably ...

If I'm not writing I'm probably out walking,

Here’s the part where you thank the people who are supporting you. Let's hear your shout outs.

This list is very long, and I would be very afraid to leave anyone out. My principle supporters are my husband and daughter my parents and the rest of my family (global). My friends in my critique and beta reading groups. All the wonderful bloggers who agree to support authors by hosting interviews, spotlights and reviews. Joel Canfield who helped knock the story into shape and has been there for me from the beginning for technical and confidence support. Paulette Mahurin who I have become very close to since meeting her through our writing and all the people who follow me on twitter, facebook and wordpress particularly those who help me to spread the word be RT'ing and posting. I have been amazed at the support of my facebook friends Iveta and Valarie deserve special mentions for their support. Hopefully I haven't forgotten anyone.

And finally, where can people find you and your book online?

On my blog

Wednesday 12 December 2012

Interview with Shane KP O'Neill

Today we're talking with author Shane KP O'Neill about his book BOUND BY BLOOD, the first book in The Vampire Chronicles.

Welcome, Shane! Tell us a bit about yourself.

My name is Shane O’Neill and I’m the writer of a new series called The Dracula Chronicles. It’s a project many years in the making that has been meticulously brought together. Outside of writing, I’m an Irishman living in Norway with my family.

How long have you been writing?

In one form or another I’ve been writing since childhood. I began this project about 20 years ago, but have worked at it seriously for the last 9 years.

Tell us about THE DRACULA CHRONICLES. Can you elaborate on what the
story is about?

The Dracula Chronicles are an epic journey through the ages where the forces of Light and Darkness struggle for supremacy until the Second Great War, as foretold in the Book of Revelations. This bitter feud began after the creation of mankind. Lucifer’s jealousy leads to the First Great War of the angels. Hundreds of thousands of years on the feud simmers beneath the surface. It plots the course of history as we know it today. Both sides manipulate the major players through the centuries to seek an advantage over the other.

On a cold night in December 1431 in Sighisoara an old gypsy woman delivers a prophecy to the great Vlad Dracul. She tells him he is about to sire two sons, one an angel and the other a devil. He returns to his fortress just as his wife bears him a son, whom he names Vlad. In the very same moment across the country on the border between Transylvania and Hungary a gypsy girl gives birth to another son, Andrei. The die is cast. The twin souls are born. The young Vlad Dracula becomes the instrument of the forces of Darkness. To balance this, the baby Andrei is blessed by the angels and bestowed with awesome powers. These chronicles are their story.

That is the overview essentially, but people who read the books will see there is so much more to the series.

How did the idea of the story come to you?

I have always wanted to write a book or series about Dracula, but I wanted to write about the real Dracula as well as the mythical one. To achieve this successfully I knew I would have to do something new and different to what has gone before. The first book I wrote, Reckoning Day, is now #6 in the series. Originally, in that story, I would go back in time after every third chapter to the 15th Century and Dracula the vampire. Then I decided to include the real historical Dracula in my concept and the series evolved from there as more book became necessary to fit in with my concept.

Do you have a critique group/partner or beta readers, or do you self-edit?

I have always worked entirely alone, but I have passed it to people to read yes who are qualified to deliver a relevant critique.

Are you a planner or a pantser?

I haven’t heard that term before, but I can gauge your meaning. Because my books work chronologically I usually write 3 different segments of each book concurrently, so I generally write as the words come to me. That would make me the latter then I guess.

What’s the hardest part of writing for you?

For me it is the editing process, of going over it all again and again. I am my own worst critic and have cut lots of the story away to make it as concise as possible. Even in doing this, Bound By Blood was still over 261,000 words so I had to split it into 2 volumes. Now that it is finished and I have put it to bed, I am fully able to appreciate what I have written.

What do you absolutely have to have nearby when writing?


If you could have any super power, what would it be?

The ability to read into the mind of any woman. That would be just perfect.

What's the weirdest thing you've googled?

I am not sure really. In the research for Book 6 I researched and studied a lot of dark and Satanic rituals. Much of that was weird and scary.

Quick writing test! Use the following words in a sentence: vampire, vacuum, and velocity.

Hmmm. The velocity with which the vampire exited the small room left a vacuum in the space behind it.

Finish this sentence: If I'm not writing, I'm probably ...

….thinking about it.

Here’s the part where you thank the people who are supporting you. Let's hear your shout outs.

There are too many to mention, but I would like to thank everyone who has supported and believed in me. To my good friends who have featured me on their blogs and to the good people who re-tweet my tweets on Twitter.

And finally, where can people find you and your book online?

Twitter @ShaneKPONeill
Amazon US
Amazon UK

Tuesday 11 December 2012

Interview with Jennifer Brown-Thomas

Today we're talking with author Jennifer Brown-Thomas about her book, BLISSFUL LIES.

Welcome to We Do Write, Jennifer. Tell us a bit about yourself.

Thank you so much for having me! I am a 26-year-old wife, mother, author, director and entrepreneur. I graduated from Texas Christian University in 2011 and I am enjoying the tireless process of my journey to achieve all the goals I have set. I am a mom to a beautiful, spunky, hardheaded little blonde haired beauty and I love every second of it.

How long have you been writing?

For as long as I can remember. When I was in fifth grade, I would script television shows and movies as the actors were saying their lines on the screen. I think that helped me to perfect my typing skills, which of course, has helped me to be more efficient in my creative writing.  

Tell us about BLISSFUL LIES. What’s the story about?

Blissful Lies, is a very character driven story. It’s easy to root for them, easy to hope they get their ‘happily ever after.’ The official synopsis: Blissful Lies is a heart-wrenching story exploring the enviable bonds of five best friends who, in the midst of growing up together, are just starting to realize how much they still have to learn about life.  They quickly find the limits of their relationships are tested when secrets and lies rapidly interrupt their picture perfect existence, threatening the stability of years of friendship. At the center of their universe is mother to one group member and Brown-Thomas University Chancellor, Addison Hamilton. Uncertainty in her own life leads her down a path of no return as she finds herself a little too involved with someone many years her junior. While each person is forced to take responsibility for their hidden secret, they wonder if ultimately, it’s just too much to move forward as the ‘family’ they once claimed to be. Join us on the journey, which allows true love to surface despite obvious obstacles, fearful hatred to emerge with a vengeance and betrayal of even the most loyal of friends. As lives are left in tattered pieces, everyone is forced to choose…. Will the group fall apart at the seams or will the strong bonds of everlasting friendship withstand the fire of deceit?

In the film, Blissful Lies, the female lead, Addison Hamilton, played by Leann Hunley, is a strong, successful, capable pillar of her community. She’s spent her life doing what makes other people happy… and now she’s doing something for herself. You’ll certainly be hoping her new romance gives her the happiness she never had with her husband…

How did the idea of the story come to you?

I just sat down and started writing one day. I think you use what you know, and you write about people, places and things you’ve seen along the way. In the book, lots of people, experiences and situations influence the characters, plots and locations but there wasn’t any one particular influence. I thought about it a little, sat down one day and just started writing…

Do you have a critique group/partner or beta readers, or do you self-edit?

-I host a series of edits amongst my team before we send the manuscript to the publisher/editor. These various rounds of edits help to weed out simple grammatical errors or missed words.

Are you a planner or a pantser?

-I think a little bit of both. When it comes to my personal life, it’s very ‘go with the flow’. That’s sort of how you have to embrace things when you have a child. But when it comes to my company and conducting business, we’re definitely planners! It takes a great deal of focus to stay ahead of the game with all we have going on.  

What’s the hardest part of writing for you?

-I’d have to say the hardest part of writing is just making sure that when the evening hours arrive, I’m not too tired. I do most of my writing between 8:00 p.m. and 6:00 a.m., and after a long day it takes me a couple of cups of coffee to get my second wind. 

What do you absolutely have to have nearby when writing?

-A cup of coffee and my phone. Haha. I take a break every couple of hours and text chat with my cousin. She and I have the funniest conversations at three in the morning. Totally my lifeline… 

If you could have any super power, what would it be?

-Teleportation. As busy as I am it would be amazing to just teleport from one place to another in the blink of an eye. 

What's the weirdest thing you've googled?

-I honestly laughed out loud at this question. The weirdest thing I’ve ever googled would have to be: “Is there a spatula in Fifty Shades of Grey?” – In regards to Ellen Degeneres’ reading of Fifty Shades of Grey.

Quick writing test! Use the following words in a sentence: mandarin, eclipse, and envelope.

A mandarin colored eclipse illuminated the sky as I sat on the balcony of my room and opened the envelope containing my first love letter from you. 

Finish this sentence: If I'm not writing, I'm probably ...

-If I’m not writing, I’m probably taking care of my baby.

Here’s the part where you thank the people who are supporting you. Let's hear your shout outs.

  • I literally have the most amazing support system. My husband is supportive of the time my career demands, which is such a blessing. It’s not easy having so many irons in the fire, and he respects and encourages my dreams. My mom is my Texas manager, so she’s involved in everything I do. From scheduling to negotiating, she’s a regular Kris Jenner—so I’m incredibly lucky to have her. In fact, that’s what we call her—“Kris.”  No one will love or protect you like your mother does. My dad is so supportive too. During filming, Blissful Lies, we ran into some awkward obstacles. One day on set when we were filming on-location, a huge round skylight presented a problem during a shot that was supposed to take place at night. The room was radiating with light, making it obvious the scene wasn’t being filmed during the day. So, my dad ran to buy a huge tarp, climbed up on top of the hotel where we were filming and then on top of a tower on the roof and covered the giant hole so it appeared to look like early evening. That was just one of the many things he did during the entire process. He’s amazing. My cousin Tara is so supportive too. She’s always making me laugh, sending my encouraging words and making me laugh with emoticons. She’s such an important part of my life. My grandmother is overwhelmingly encouraging too. I’m so blessed to have all of my family around me pushing and promoting me in every way possible. My cousins, aunts, uncles, in-laws, etc. I am really close to my husband’s family too, so I get the best of both worlds. It’s incredible.

  • Throughout my short career I have met some really unbelievable, inspirational people. One lady, in particular, who is the very definition of class; who occasionally reminds me why we’re in this business in the first place; who has remained true to herself and encourages me to do the same, despite the Hollywood glitz and glamour is Lauren Koslow. She’s a very talented actress, and now dear friend. I look forward to working with her on future projects.

And finally, where can we find you and your books online?


Get the book:

To order autographed copies, e-mail: 

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Interview with Sasha Summers

As part of the Hollywood Holiday blog tour, I'm interviewing author Sasha Summers.

Welcome to We Do Write, Sasha! Tell us a bit about yourself. 

I’m a mom to 4 amazing kids, a wife, a terrible housekeeper, and a lover of stories – books and film.

How long have you been writing? 

Since I was little. I won’t tell you how long ago exactly – but my first completed play was for Girl Scouts.

Tell us about HOLLYWOOD HOLIDAY. What’s the story about? 

A Hollywood actress hoping to save her career. A scarred Marine hoping to find peace. He hates Hollywood, she knows a relationship will make things that much more complicated for her – so of course they have to fall for each other ;)!

How did the idea of the story come to you? 

Jen was a character in Book 1 (Hollywood Ever After) that had a few scenes of hers cut. But her story wouldn’t let me go so I gave her her very own story.

Do you have a critique group/partner or beta readers, or do you self-edit? 

Yes, yes, and yes.

Are you a planner or a pantser? 

Pantser – but I do find I go back and plot to help bridge sometimes.

What’s the hardest part of writing for you? 

If my characters aren’t fully realized, I hit a wall. It can take time to figure them out sometimes.

What do you absolutely have to have nearby when writing? 

My computer. Music is nice, too.

If you could have any super power, what would it be? 

Write faster. I’ve actually thought about looking into one of those voice transcription software packages because I can’t type fast enough to keep up with my train of thought. Okay, that’s a selfish super power… Hmmm, the ability to make food and water grow anywhere so that people never went without.

What's the weirdest thing you've googled? 

No comment.

Haha. Quick writing test! Use the following words in a sentence: pilfer, repugnant, and purified.

You drank the last of the purified water, so I had to pilfer the only non-repugnant beverage left – margarita!

LOL, awesome! Finish this sentence: If I'm not writing, I'm probably ... 

reading or watching TV/movie – or pretty much anything to avoid laundry…

Here’s the part where you thank the people who are supporting you. Let's hear your shout outs.

I love my publisher – seriously. They are AWESOME.
And my family is fantastic. And my crit group and my beta readers – Allison!!!
And there are a few fans/friends that have done so much to help ‘me’ get out there: Shannon Shuey, Dana Grissom, Viviana Izzo, Rhonda Wellborne, and more… Gosh, I know I’m leaving people out… 

And finally, where can people find you and your book online?

My books are on Amazon, Barnes and Noble, KOBO… pretty much wherever books are sold.  You can find more about me on my website:

Thank you so much for sharing Hollywood Holiday with the world! Have a great day!

Monday 10 December 2012

Interview with Airicka Phoenix

Today we're chatting with author Airicka Phoenix about her novel TOUCHING SMOKE.

Welcome to We Do Write, Airicka. Tell us a bit about yourself.

Well, my name is Airicka Phoenix. I'm the mother of four incredible babies (five if you include the dog). I write like some people breathe. I'm a little obsessed with books, chocolate and really bad jokes. Sarcasm is my first language. I hate red smarties. Shoes are God's gift to women. A sense of humor is a must if you're around me and I bite my nails, although I'll never admit it out loud.

How long have you been writing?

Since the 3rd grade, but only started getting my writing out there this year (2012).

Tell us about TOUCHING SMOKE. What’s the story about?

Touching Smoke is about secrets and a girl's collision into the world of love and hate and the obsession that goes with both. Fallon is a sixteen-year-old girl with a past drenched in shadows and lies. When she finally learns what she is, her world is already crumbling and her existence becomes a risk when she learns she was created to destroy.

How did the idea of the story come to you?

Amalie came to me while I was writing another story. Originally, Touching Smoke was written through Amalie's point of view and the plot was a whole lot more different. But then Fallon squeezed her way in and I couldn't stop her.

Do you have a critique group/partner or beta readers, or do you self-edit?

I have a critique group and several beta readers. I don't know what I would do without them.

Are you a planner or a pantser?

Depends on what it is. With my writing, I am a planner.

What’s the hardest part of writing for you?

I think it's finding time to write with four kids and life outside of my imagination.

What do you absolutely have to have nearby when writing?

Chocolate and my notes.

If you could have any super power, what would it be?

Reading minds. I know it's cliche, but I always wonder what people are thinking. lol.

What's the weirdest thing you've googled?

How to tell the difference between a male and female Mollie Fish. LOL

Quick writing test! Use the following words in one sentence: philosophy, peacock, and peculiar.

Peacocks have a strange philosophy when it comes to fanning their feathers and it's usually quite peculiar in my way of thinking.

Finish this sentence: If I'm not writing, I'm probably ...

If I'm not writing, I'm probably hanging out with my kids. They have the most insane imaginations and I love dabbling in their world as often as I can.

Here’s the part where you thank the people who are supporting you. Let's hear your shout outs.

Oh my goodness where do I even begin!? I have been blessed with so many incredible friends... okay.

My Street Team Girls: Ambersupernatural AndYareviews, Tamara Beard, Karla Ileana Calzada, Nikki Archer, Leslie Paige Dover, Mandy Ireadindie , Brianna Lee Reviews, Krystal Marlein, Cassie Chavez, Crystal Bozeman Clifton, Kristina Snyder, Emily Walker, Amber Shelly, & Hannah Membrey

My Huntresses: Susan Griscom, Amber Shelly, Brianna Lee Reviews, Ambersupernatural AndYareviews, Krystal Clearbook Reviews, Mandy Ireadindie, Paranormal Angel blog, Ever and Ever Sight, Kristina Snyder, Read Between The Lines, Book Addict, Kaidans Seduction, Just me myself and I, Reading with Anacrasia, Carlyle Labuschagne, Cynthia Shepp, Hannah Membrey, Patricia Macias, Mandee At CompelledbyWords, The Seraphine Muse, Melissa Andrea, Release the pages, Emily Walker, Karla Ileana Calzada, Cameo Renae, Sallie's Book Reviews and More and Dana's YA Bookpile.

My girls: Brigitte Hernandez, Constance Dalrymple, Momo Xiong, Kelly Kinard, Nicole Lubatti, Summer Day, Summer Lane, A Belle's Tales Book-Reviews, Kimberley Richert-McInroy, Nancy Straight.

And so many more. If I've forgotten you, please know I didn't mean to! I do love and appreciate you so very much!

And finally, where can people find you and your books online?

All Romance Ebooks:

Twitter:!/AirickaPhoenix (@AirickaPhoenix)

Thanks for chatting with us today, Airicka. Good luck with your books!

Thank you so much for having me! I had so much fun answering your questions!