Welcome, Ramona. Why do you write the kind of books you do?
I crave a good seat-of-the-pants adventure, and I want to keep the story moving while the hero and heroine come together, which is why I write romantic suspense. I’m basically a sappy romantic at heart, no matter how “intellectual” I like to pretend to be sometimes. And I write inspirationals because I quickly discovered it was easier to write from my own Christian worldview than take it out. It’s just who I am.
Besides when you came to know the Lord, what is the happiest day in your life?
I’ve been blessed with a lot of happy days. God has been awesome in my life. No one day stands out over the others.
How has being published changed your life?
Networking! Being published is a great high, but it has put me in touch with so many amazing readers and writers.
What are you reading right now?
I read a lot of books. Anything Brandilyn Collins writes. Dark Pursuit made the hair stand up on my neck. I’ve also been working my way through Alexander McCall Smith’s series about the “No. 1 Ladies’ Detective Agency.” And I always pick up the latest Love Inspired Suspense books.
What is your current work in progress?
I have two in the works, both about cold case detectives. One, Reclaiming Daisy Doe, is about a private detective who specializes in small town cases, starting with the murder of her own grandmother and father. The other, The Bones of Gregory Miller, centers on a police detective investigating the discovery of a child’s skeleton in the basement of a hotel.
What would be your dream vacation?
I LOVE to scuba dive, but I haven’t been able to go in several years. My dream vacation would be about a month in Dominica: diving, hiking, and stretching out on the beach with my AlphaSmart and a few good books.
How do you choose your settings for each book?
I usually chose settings that intrigue me, that I’m familiar with, or that fit the story. In the three “Jackson’s Retreat” books, including The Taking of Carly Bradford, I set them in New Hampshire because I love the state and they seemed to “fit” there. I have some great friends in NH, and I spent a lot of time with them, exploring NH small towns, including the one they live in. They own a café in Portsmouth, and I used the café in The Taking of Carly Bradford. I’ll also be running a contest on my site, featuring the café.
If you could spend an evening with one person who is currently alive, who would it be and why?
That’s tough. I guess my dearest wish would be able to talk to my daughter for an evening. Rachel is severely disabled. She’s a happy kid most of the time, but she can’t speak or do anything for herself, and I’d love to be able to know what she’s thinking, what she really feels about life. After that, speaking with most normal folks kinda pales….although I wouldn’t exactly turn down an invitation from Keanu Reeves or Trevor Eve. (I do have my more shallow side….)
What are your hobbies, besides writing and reading?
Scuba diving! I also cross-stitch (although I don’t get to do it enough) and I love to hike and explore the wilderness.
What is your most difficult writing obstacle, and how do you overcome it?
I often fight episodes of depression, which crunch my creativity. I overcome it by taking the conquering steps I’ve learned over the past 50 years, including making changes in my life, spending time with friends and God, staying in the sun (light therapy), and occasionally seeking out counseling.
What advice would you give to a beginning author?
Don’t write about what you know. Write about what you love – or want to love. Knowledge is easy to come by these days – whereas it’ll take passion to get you past the rough times, either with your writing life or with rejections. Listen to your heart and to God.
Tell us about the featured book.
Three years ago, Dee Kelley lost her family. Three months ago, eight-year-old Carly Bradford disappeared. When Dee finds crucial evidence in a case rapidly growing cold, she becomes determined not to let another mother suffer the way she did. She will help police chief Tyler Madison find Carly, whether he wants her assistance or not. But Tyler isn’t the only one determined to keep Dee off the case. And evidence isn’t all that she’ll find waiting for her in the woods.
I'm hooked. How can readers find you on the Internet?
My website and blog. I LOVE visitors. I also have Facebook and MySpace pages.
Thank you, Ramona, for spending this time with us.
Readers, here's a link where you can order The Taking of Carly Bradford:
Leave a comment for a chance to win a free copy of the book. The only notification will be the Winners announcement on this blog. Be sure to check back a week from Saturday to see if you won.
If you're reading this on Facebook or Amazon, please come to this blog to leave the comment: