Linda and I were longtime, online friends before we ever met. Now we're sisters of the heart. I love her humor and quirky way of looking at things. If you haven't read her any of her Moonstruck series, rush out and buy the first two in the series Paper Moon and Fiesta Moon. Although each book will stand alone, you'll want to read them in order, and when you've read one, you'll have to read them all. Linda is giving away an autographed copy to a winner chosen from the people who leave comments on the interview. You might win a copy of the third book in the series Blue Moon.
Most of my characters have my sense of humor, knack for misadventure, and my tendency to question God on occasion and/or complain a bit. Sometimes God and I aren’t always in sync on things
What is the quirkiest thing you have ever done?
Okay, I looked up quirky in the dictionary to be certain that I answered this correctly. It says a quirk is an abrupt twist or turn. Hmm. Unless it’s following up on an impulse to play joke on or tease someone, I’m not really inclined to make sudden changes in direction. But I do have a quirky sense of humor…look out! You could be next.
Don't I know it? When did you first discover that you were a writer?
Writing was never a challenge in school, but I can’t say I enjoyed it, because I ‘had’ to do it. Yet, I was always making up stories in my mind. They rarely made to pen and paper, unless it was a free assignment where I could choose what I wanted to write about. It wasn’t until I began to read historical romance that I ever entertained any thought about writing a book. Upon reading one that I thought mediocre, I decided I could do that. And I did. Boy, did I write one…185,000 words worth. It was finally published at a pared down 140,000 words.
Tell us the range of the kinds of books you enjoy reading.
I enjoy books of all genres, from romance to futuristic to suspense and thrillers. And I like reading non-fiction, especially history, journals or biographies.
What other books have you written, whether published or not?
I’ve never written anything except romance. I did write sixteen secular romances for Zebra/Kensington and Meteor/Kismet Romances, prior to my first CBA book Hi Honey, I'm Home. That was followed by Not Exactly Eden, Unlikely Angels Anthology, It Had to be You, Along Came Jones for Multnomah Publishers, and my latest Moonstruck romcom trilogy for Thomas Nelson/Westbow Press—Paper Moon. Fiesta Moon, and Blue Moon. I also did an Irish Celtic historical series for Multnomah called The Fires of Gleannmara, which included Maire,Riona, and Dierdre.
How do you keep your sanity in our run, run, run world?
I don’t. But by faith I cling to the world’s window like that stuffed Garfield one sees in cars. Somehow life hasn’t shaken me off yet. Tenacity, I think it’s called. God enables my tenacity...or in Garfield’s case, claws.
How do you choose your characters’ names?
My main characters’ names are the hardest. Most of the time I pour through name books until the right one with the right meaning jumps out at me. Sometimes I hear a name in a movie or on TV that suits the character forming in my mind. I honestly can’t begin a book until I have the names of my hero and heroine established. In only one of my twenty-eight books to date have I ever changed a main character name in mid-book. Along Came Jones’ Deanna was originally Dianna, but somehow she turned Italian and more gutsy than glamorous after I met a real Deanna at a party while writing the novel.
What is the accomplishment that you are most proud of?
That’s a hard one. I could say my kids or the way God has used my music and writing to touch others. But that’s not really pride. That’s humility...gratitude. I suppose I could say that I’m proud to still be hanging on to life’s window by His Grace. Nothing I’ve ever accomplished has been done without it.
If you were an animal, which one would you be, and why?
A pampered house cat that doesn’t have to kill and eat living things and doesn’t know what’s in my crystal Fancy Feast bowl. Because of my chemical depression, which is always worse in winter, I’m solar-powered like cats. I love napping in the sun…by the sea. It’s the ultimate muscle relaxer to me. Hmm. Make that a pampered lighthouse keeper’s cat.
What is your favorite food?
Thin slick dumplings. For those of you who are not from the Eastern Shore of Maryland, those are little pasta-like squares cut from a thinly rolled dough of flour, water, and dash of salt; cooked in a well-seasoned chicken (or beef/duck/etc) broth to absorb the flavor; and then the broth is thickened to a gravy. Keep your chocolate, gals. Give me the starch.
My featured book is Blue Moon, the last of the Moonstruck RomCom series about the Madison siblings. It’s about the baby sister and prodigy Dr. Jeanne Madison. Success and faith have always come easy to the young marine archaeologist, including receiving specific information as to the whereabouts of the sunken galleon Blue Moon. Until she meets Captain Gabe Avery of the Fallen Angel, the only boat her limited budget as a novice will afford. The name of Gabe’s boat says it all, challenging Jeanne to aim at salvaging more than sunken treasure in this adventure of a lifetime. If the incorrigible captain isn’t enough to fray Jeanne’s nerves, her eccentric crew is. Then, just as success is within their reach, Gabe’s dark past comes back to haunt them and Jeanne’s untested faith goes through the fire, as well as Gabe’s barely recovered one.
Writing about untested faith was new for me, but after hearing on the Minirth-Meyer Clinic radio show one day, how those who’ve never had their faith tested are more likely to cave in under life’s challenges, than those who’ve been through the fire time and again, I thought that would make an interesting spiritual conflict for Jeanne and a contrast to Gabe’s spirtual struggle. As in real life, God uses all degrees of faith to accomplish His will, even when it’s not all it should be. I guess one could say that a little faith goes a long way in His hands. Oh, and did I say God has a sense of humor?
And I'm glad He gave you one, Linda. Your posts often fill my office with laughter as I read them. Thank you for spending this time with us. I look forward to being with you again.
Remember readers, leave a comment for a chance to win a copy of the featured book. While you're at it, stop by on Kristy's interview and leave a comment there, too.