Bio: Born and raised in the Lone Star state of
Debra Holt grew up among horses, cowboys, wide open spaces, and real Texas
Rangers. Pride in her state and ancestry knows no bounds, and it is these
heroes and heroines she loves to write about the most. She also draws upon a
variety of life experiences including working with abused children, caring for
baby animals at a major zoo, and planning high-end weddings (ah, romance!).
Debra’s real pride and joys, however, are her son, an aspiring film actor, and a daughter with aspirations to join the Federal Bureau of Investigation. (more story ideas!) When she isn’t busy writing about tall Texans and feisty heroines, she can be found cheering on her Texas Tech Red Raiders, or heading off on another cruise adventure. She read her first romance ... Janet Dailey's Fiesta San Antonio, over thirty years ago and became hooked on the genre. Writing contemporary western romances, is both her passion and dream come true, and she hopes her books will bring smiles ... and sighs ... to all who believe in happily-ever-afters.
Welcome, Debra. Tell us how much of yourself you write into your characters.
I tend to write strong females simply because of my own upbringing and the fact that is simply the way many Texan females are from birth. That is not to say we have cornered that trait over others from other states, but we do have a history that encompasses many strengths and my characters have those. Often times, a scene will include a bit of something that might have happened in my own experience and if it fits the storyline, it can be used.
What is the quirkiest thing you have ever done?
Quirkiest … or insane might be better description. I recently rescued a homeless dog that took about 3 weeks of intensive tracking, coaxing, and heartbreaking moments. I, and another dog lover, finally captured him in a garage in an old house in a questionable neighborhood. We became trapped in a stranger’s garage, with our cell phones in our cars down the street, and realizing the situation could go badly in a hurry. Long story short … the stranger came home and was very nice about us having gotten into his garage to save the animal … no police, no trespassing charges…. Lol The dog is now Miss Abby and lives the life of a queen in my home.
When did you first discover that you were a writer?
In high school, the teachers often had me write papers for them and edit others for their own personal use. I enjoyed it. It seemed to come naturally and continued from that point on. I fully realized it when I sold my first manuscript a couple of years ago.
Tell us the range of the kinds of books you enjoy reading.
When I have time to read for enjoyment, I try to catch up with my favorite authors … John Sandford, Patricia Cornwell, James Patterson, and Linda Warren. I enjoy the thrillers and good romances.
How do you keep your sanity in our run, run, run world?
Some would say I have lost it long ago! My day job is very demanding and I have to be extremely organized and professional. I am one for punctuality also. Those can lead to insanity very quickly when one or more go off tracks during the day. I like lists and I like to cross things off them so that helps keep me going.
How do you choose your characters’ names?
They usually come to me right after the title and story idea. I cannot explain it, but it is usually very easy for me.
What is the accomplishment that you are most proud of?
On a personal basis … my two grown children who are bright and caring and good adults … no brag just fact. On a professional level … actually being able to have people say to me that they like my writing and want to read more.
If you were an animal, which one would you be, and why?
A wild Mustang, hopefully able to run free on some of the most beautiful land still left.
What is your favorite food?
Cheese enchiladas with real chili meat sauce and Texas BBQ … great combo!
What is the problem with writing that was your greatest roadblock, and how did you overcome it?
Problem is that sinking point when I get past 40,000 words and I know the end I want but still need to get to that point. I will take a walk with my dogs, go to a movie by myself, enjoy some sweet tea in my rose garden … whatever will refresh and recharge my brain.
Tell us about the featured book.
It is first and foremost, a sweet romance. Two people come together in a dramatic turn of events where the heroine rescues the hero. During the course of their story, the tables will turn and we find it is the hero who rescues the heroine. It is a love story and also one of redemptive faith being restored.
Please give us the first page.
“Three minutes out. Descent begins in one.” The pilot’s voice crackled through Mercy’s headset. He tossed a look over his shoulder at the female medic seated in the jump seat. She responded with quick thumbs up. “The scene is secured,” he added. “We’re in and out fast. There’s only one to transport.”
A dull, leaden weight sank to the pit of her stomach. Mercy Smith knew his words meant the other injured person had died before their arrival.
“We can’t save them all, Mercy.” Paul Robards, the second medic onboard and seated across from her, noted the shadowed look that crossed her eyes. “Some things are out of our control.”
“That’s true. I just wish we could at least have the opportunity to try.” Having served two tours in Afghanistan and Iraq, before joining the trauma unit as team leader, she had become a realist and knew they would always lose some of the patients they were called to assist, but it never stopped the feeling of defeat when they lost someone before they even had the opportunity to attempt to intervene and save them. Mercy used to tell herself, a long time ago, that everything was in God’s hands. She didn’t delude herself with that platitude any longer. The only hands she could count on were the two folded in her lap. She just needed the opportunity to try.
Mercy cast her gaze out the window. They were coming in low over endless stretches of farmland. Cotton fields bordered the two lanes of the Farm to Market road which resembled a sea of flashing red and blue lights stretching into a long ribbon. First responders, paramedics, fire trucks, and a myriad of local, county, and state patrol cars blanketed the scene. People rushed to and fro like a colony of hungry ants.
How can readers find you on the Internet?
Amazon http://amzn.to/1J6id6E (link to the book)
Thank you, Debra, for sharing this new book with us. I love reading books set in Texas. It's where I live.
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