Welcome back, Ace. I love your classic car. How did you come up with the idea for this story?
I so enjoyed creating the lead character, Helen Meeker, as a part of the novel The Yellow Packard, and I wanted to get to know her better. As World War II is a ripe field for mystery and adventure, I opted to look for ways to immerse Helen into actual historical events of that time period and let that lead to exciting fictional plots. As she is a beautiful, bright, and stylish woman with an important job these elements also opened the door for romance. With all that in mind, I created a series of ideas that would take her through the war. A Date With Death is the first episode in the series, the second, The Dark Pool, is out as well, and I just finished the third, Blood Brother. I’m going to continue to spin out an episode a month for the rest of the year, and, if it sells well, maybe even beyond 2014.
If you were planning a party with Christian authors of contemporary fiction, what three people would you invite and why?
Brandilyn Collins, Kathy Harris, and Camy Tang. I have visited with each of them via phone and email but never met them in person. Kathy and I have a great deal in common and therefore would have no problem talking about passions for music and pets. I’d love to pick Brandilyn’s brain on where she gets some of her high-octane plots. I have long had a fascination with Asian-American culture and thus Camy could provide me with new insights in that area. It would be an interesting evening.
Yes, it would. Now let’s do that for a party for Christian authors of historical fiction, what three people would you invite and why?
As I love to write in this genre I would pick people who have really been successful in this area and try to find the secrets to building large fan bases. So I’d grab Francine Rivers, Margaret George, and Lorna Seilstand. The fact their writing is varied and different in style and tone would allow me to learn a great deal more about the craft of writing. I will toss in a bonus guest as well … Don Reid. He is writing fascinating fiction after a career as the lead singer of the Statler Brothers.
Many times, people (and other authors) think you have it made with so many books published. What is your most difficult problem with writing at this time in your career?
To be honest … it is harder than ever to find readers and bookstores. We live in a world where magazines, newspapers, and books are fighting for interest. The publishing business is changing and thus figuring out where it is going and how to market is often more mysterious than my novels. So everything has flip-flopped for me. Now I actually spend more time concerned about marketing than I do creating. This series, In The President’s Service, is an attempt to try something new and see if it might win over some new folks to reading books and take marketing in a new direction.
Tell us about the featured book.
A Date With Death is the follow up to A Yellow Packard and is set in the opening days of World War II. The lead, Helen Meeker, works out of the White House for FDR. In this episode of the series, she tries to save an innocent man from execution and is unexpectedly tossed into world of romance and intrigue where things and people are not as they appear. As the plot unfolds, she has to survive by her wits and instincts as death literally lurks around every corner. It is a fun ride and Helen is the dynamic, interesting woman needed to survive what is thrown at her on every page. The cast around her is fun as well.
Please give us the first page of the book.
Sunday, September 21, 1941
A field in France
Just past midnight, Private Nigel Andrews lay flat on his stomach, hiding in some tall weeds just beyond a French pasture.
Liverpool native was a
college graduate. Blond and green-eyed, he was stocky, just a touch over
five-eight and an ounce short of 150 pounds. But in this situation, size didn’t
He was tough as shoe leather and hard as iron. In his unit’s boxing tourney, he had whipped men six inches taller and more than fifty pounds heavier. So in spite of his schoolboy appearance, those who knew him never crossed him.
His strength and grit notwithstanding, Andrews had once wanted to become a pastor and was even engaged to a preacher’s daughter he’d met at
But for the moment those plans had been supplanted by a driving desire to get
off of French soil alive. His mother and father had already lost one son; they
likely couldn’t survive losing two. They’d even fought his being drafted. Hope College
He hated the military and everything about it. So no matter the odds, he vowed he would survive this unholy war. He also vowed to make sure that whatever it took, short of his death, ultimate victory would be realized.
“Where is that blasted plane?”
Andrews turned his attention from the horizon to an obviously frustrated Col. Reggie Fister. Speaking to no one in particular and likely just yapping to defuse his anger, Fister continued to lash out. “It was supposed to be here and ready for takeoff. Blimey! We do our impossible job perfectly, and the Air Force can’t even manage to get the easy part right. Whose side are they on anyway?”
I can’t wait for my copy to get here, so I can read it. How can readers find you on the Internet?
My website is www.acecollins.com. On twitter I’m @AceCollins and I’m on Facebook under my name.
Readers, here are links to the book. By using one when you order, you help support this blog.
A Date with Death - Christianbook.com
A Date With Death (In The President's Service) - Kindle
Leave a comment for a chance to win a free copy of the book. Please tell us where you live, at least the state or territory. (Comments containing links may be subject to removal by blog owner.)
Void where prohibited; the odds of winning depend on the number of entrants. Entering the giveaway is considered a confirmation of eligibility on behalf of the enterer in accord with these rules and any pertaining local/federal/international laws.
The only notification you’ll receive is the winner post on this blog. So be sure to check back a week from Saturday to see if you won. You will have 4 weeks from the posting of the winners to claim your book.
If you’re reading this on Google +, Feedblitz, Facebook, Linkedin, or Amazon, please come to the blog to leave your comment if you want to be included in the drawing. Here’s a link.