Welcome, Lillian. Tell us how much of yourself you write into your characters.
I try not to model my characters on myself or my friends. Writing experts warn beginning writers not to do that because it tends to limit the characters. But the truth is bits and pieces of myself pop up when I least expect it.
What is the quirkiest thing you have ever done?
Mmm. You mean besides being a writer?
When did you first discover that you were a writer?
I’m not sure it’s something you discover as much as something that happens over time. It took several years and many, many hours of writing before I decided I was a writer.
Tell us the range of the kinds of books you enjoy reading.
I enjoy reading all sorts of books, both Christian and secular. Suspense, mysteries, and thrillers are my favorite and if they have some romance in them, all the better.
How do you keep your sanity in our run, run, run world?
How do you choose your characters’ names?
For me, this is one of the hardest things when I first start creating a story. One MS I worked on and then set aside. When I came back to it, I realized all the major characters had names from the old Gunsmoke series, including Miss Kitty, Amanda Blake, Matt Dillon, James Arness. It was very bizarre! I have a baby book of names that I use now to help. Some of my characters change names several times before their real name is discovered.
What is the accomplishment that you are most proud of?
Wow! Talk about a tough question. I’ve written and erased several different answers because they sounded too much like bragging. I could talk about putting myself through college, or working and retiring from a large urban school district, or finally accomplishing my dream of being a published author but...The truth is I’m proud of the way I live my life now. I don’t always succeed (not by a longshot) but I try to act in a way that makes God smile. I’ve been a Christian since I was a teen-ager, but haven’t always made the right choices. With God’s help, I’m getting better at that...and I’ve never had more peace and joy.
If you were an animal, which one would you be, and why?
A puppy, of course! There’s nothing cuter, sweeter, or more loveable than a puppy. Who wouldn’t want to cute, sweet, and loveable?
What is your favorite food?
Pasta without a doubt! Spaghetti—lasagna—macaroni and cheese! If it’s got pasta in it, then I’m a happy camper. As I’m sitting here writing, I can smell the spaghetti my wonderful husband is cooking for dinner. Yummy!
What is the problem with writing that was your greatest roadblock, and how did you overcome it?
I’d say I was and am my own greatest roadblock. My shyness, my insecurities, and the limitations I put on myself. It has taken lots of prayer and studying God’s Word to understand that He wouldn’t give me the dream of being a writer without giving me what I need to accomplish it. With each step of faith I take, God is there waiting just as He promised.
Tell us about the featured book.
PURSUED is a romantic suspense. When a big city lawyer crashes into a laid-back farmer, the fun (and the terror) begins.
Reggie spends her time pursuing the American Dream and is sure wealth and success will make her happy, even though it hasn’t yet. Dylan describes himself as a simple farmer who already has everything he needs to be happy—family, friends, and God.
In the normal course of events, their lives would never intersect but some accidents just aren't meant to be avoided. When Reggie crashes into Dylan, it makes a bad day even worse or so she thinks. Dylan on the other hand is intrigued by the feisty lady lawyer and wrangles a way to spend a bit more time with her by offering to drive her home. But when someone shoots at Reggie, they begin a journey that will change both their lives forever.
Please give us the first page of the book.
“Unacceptable,” Jeffrey Howard whispered.
Heads whipped around as if a bomb had exploded, instead of a whisper.
No, no, no! This can’t be happening. Reggie Meyers’s insides turned to mush, but she turned toward the head of the table with a smile pasted on her face. She laid the pen down on the contract. It wouldn’t do for others to notice her hand shaking. A trembling pen would be a dead giveaway.
“I’m sorry. Did you say unacceptable?” Reggie looked at the owner of Lightning Bolt Enterprises.
“That’s what I said.” The older man’s snow white mustache twitched.
Maybe, it was a joke and he was trying not to smile. She waited for the punch line. It didn’t come. If she blew this deal, with Lightning Bolt, she’d get fired for sure. Her future at Benton and Greene, Attorneys at Law looked bleak.
“I’m sorry. I don’t understand.”
The man stood. “I thought you were a lawyer.”
He marched over to her. Leaning down, he jabbed at a word. “Right there, can’t you see? It says if but it should say when. It makes the contract unacceptable.”
“It’s just a clerical error, Mr. Howard. We can cross it out and write in the correct word and initial it. It’s no big deal.”
“Missy, it may not be a big deal to you, but it is to me. I won’t deal with a company that doesn’t know the difference between if and when.”
Reggie glanced around the table. Not one person looked at her. Not a good sign.
Ignoring his disrespectful tone and words, she spoke again, hoping not to sound like she was begging. She stood, almost nose to nose, except he was over six foot tall and she was a foot shorter. “I’ll have a new contract printed up and it will be ready in thirty minutes.”
Mr. Howard looked at his watch.
He was going to agree. It would be OK.
He gave the famous lightning bolt smile that had made him and his company renowned.
“Sorry, these negotiations are now over.” His blue eyes twinkled, and then he turned and walked out the room.
Her mouth fell open. Three months of negotiating over. Just like that.
How can readers find you on the Internet?I’m on Facebook as Lillian K. Duncan and my website is www.lillianduncan.net
Thank you, Lillian, for spending this time with us.
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