Monday, March 04, 2019

HAIR CALAMITIES AND HOT CASH - Gail Pallotta - One Free Book

Welcome, Gail. Tell us how much of yourself you write into your characters.
I’m inspired by events, people, and experiences that touch my heart and write about them from my perspective, so I put something of myself into every novel. However, I’m not a character in any of my books, and my personal influence is different with each book. For instance, I drew from the days I spent as a youngster in my mother’s beauty shop for Hair Calamities and Hot Cash. In Barely Above Water, the symptoms and treatments for Lyme disease are real ones that I’ve had, but the heroine is drawn from swimmers’ personalities from my days volunteering when my daughter swam.       

What is the quirkiest thing you have ever done?
I’ve done some pretty quirky things, but I’ll share one about writing. Not long after my daughter was born, I saw a notice for a new magazine. I arranged an appointment with the editor, even though things were pretty hectic at the house. The morning I was scheduled to go, I gathered copies of articles I’d written, but soon realized I had nothing to put them in. A friend had sent us a picnic basket for Christmas, so I removed the napkins, plates and glasses and inserted my portfolio. When I sat down at the editor’s desk, he stared at my lap and asked, “Are we having a picnic?” I explained, and he grinned. I also went on to write many articles for the publication. Years later, he graciously hosted my daughter and me on her high school “go to work with Mom or Dad” day.

When did you first discover that you were a writer?
I’ve loved writing stories for as long as I can remember. One of my first appeared in a grammar school newspaper a friend and I published. Much later, I wrote press releases and put out a company magazine all the while wanting to write books. It wasn’t until my husband retired and my daughter grew up that I started to fulfill that goal.

Tell us the range of the kinds of books you enjoy reading.
I’m not a genre person. I’ve loved to read for as long as I can remember and enjoy any good story. My favorites range from the classics to romance, mysteries, and thrillers.

How do you keep your sanity in a run, run, run world?
Prayer and with God’s help.

How do you choose your characters’ names?
I think of my characters personalities then since my books are set in the South, I try to select names typical of this region. 

What is the accomplishment that you are most proud of?
My daughter, who’s a fine Christian person. But I guess you mean something to do with writing. That’s difficult because every book I’ve written is special to me in its own way. I’m humbled by the people who’ve seen value in my books and have worked to help me publish and promote them, everyone from critique partners to blog hosts, editors, and publishers, to readers.

If you were an animal, which one would you be, and why?
It’s a mammal instead of an animal, but since I enjoy swimming, I’d be a dolphin.

What is your favorite food?
Fresh fish right out of the ocean.

What is the problem with writing that was your greatest roadblock, and how did you overcome it?
It’s a toss-up between understanding the industry and marketing. For the former, I read books about Christian writing, perused the internet, joined American Christian Fiction Writers, and attended several conferences. I’m not saying I understand it, but I have a better idea now. I’m following the popular recommendations for marketing, but I haven’t overcome that roadblock.

Tell us about the featured book.
Hair Calamities and Hot Cash was inspired by my mother’s beauty shop in a small town in the foothills of the North Carolina Mountains. However, the book’s set at a high elevation to allow for breathtaking views. I drew on the personalities of Mother’s customers for the theme of the book. They accepted and cared about each other because they believed we’re all God’s children.

In the book, a New York stockbroker crashes his car into Eve Castleberry’s beauty shop...on the same day the young widow’s defective hair products are causing wild hairdos. Soon Eve finds herself helping the handsome stranger hunt the thieves who stole his client’s cash...and hot on the trail of two of the F.B.I.’s most-wanted criminals! Romance blossoms amid danger, suspense, and Eve’s hair-brained plan to get back the money.

Please give us the first page of the book.
Philip Wells glanced at the majestic blue-tinted mountains in the distance. New York City stress fell from him like the waterfall he passed on his right. He turned into a winding curve and climbed a steep grade flush with green hardwoods, white dogwood blossoms, and pink wildflowers. His taut muscles loosened. If he’d known the Western North Carolina Mountains would bring such peace, he would’ve asked George to send him here on a business trip.

He’d resented leaving the country club when George appointed him to take care of Mr. Jacobsen’s account, but not anymore. Riding through these hills gave him new-found freedom. His heart danced until he zipped into another curve at the edge of a cliff and glimpsed the precipice beyond the guard rail. He gripped the steering wheel as the need to secure his space on solid ground rushed through him.

He’d driven on the highway for miles and hadn’t seen another car. According to the GPS, he’d round a few more bends and pull into Triville Motel near the base of Mr. Jacobsen’s mountain. Philip glanced at the towering peaks surrounding him and tried to imagine owning one. George had instructed him to contact Mr. Jacobsen, let him know he’d arrived, and set up a meeting.

How can readers find you on the Internet?
I love to connect with readers on my website at
Twitter - Gail Pallotta @Hopefulwords -

Thank you, Gail, for sharing this book with my blog readers and me.

Readers, here are links to the book.
Hair Calamities And Hot Cash - Paperback
Hair Calamities And Hot Cash - Kindle

Leave a comment for a chance to win a free copy of the book. You must follow these instructions to be in the drawing. Please tell us where you live, at least the state or territory or country if outside North America. (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.

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Tammy G. said...

This sounds like a fun book.
Tammy G. from East Texas

Melanie Backus said...

I love the sound of this book! Thank you for this opportunity!
Melanie Backus, TX

Gail Pallotta said...

Hi Tammy,

Thank you! It was fun to write.

Happy Monday!


Gail Pallotta said...

Hi Melanie,

Thank you for stopping by to read about Hair Calamities and Hot Cash and for your interest!

Happy Monday,


Connie Porter Saunders said...

Hi Gail, this book sounds so fun and entertaining. Thanks for sharing your first page.
Connie from Kentucky

Linda Kish said...

This sounds like a book I would enjoy reading. Linda in CA

lkish77123 at gmail dot com

Vivian Furbay said...

This sounds like a fund and interesting read. I would like to read it for the suspense and the wild hairdos. Vivian Furbay of CO

Gail Pallotta said...

Hi Connie, Thank you for stopping by. Nice to see you here. Feedback includes one person who says she laughed out loud. I'm glad you enjoyed the first page.

Gail Pallotta said...

Hi Linda,

Thanks for reading about Hair Calamities and Hot Cash. Readers are telling me it's a fun read.

Gail Pallotta said...

Hi Vivian,

Thanks for stopping by. It does have wild hairdos (: and suspense when they chase the criminals and when they drive up a steep cliff.

Wendy Newcomb said...

My mom had her own 'beauty shop' when I was growing up so this sounds like a great read. Thank you for the chance to win a copy.

Wendy in South Sioux City, NE

wfnren at aol dot com

Kay Garrett said...

"HAIR CALAMITIES AND HOT CASH" by Gail Pallotta sounds wonderful and a book that I would very much enjoy having the opportunity to read. I've placed it on my TBR list.

Enjoyed the interview with Gail. Loved her fast thinking in her use of the picnic basket.

Thanks for the chance to win a copy of the book!
Kay Garrett from Mountain View, AR
2clowns at arkansas dot net

Lori Smanski said...

What a fun interview. This sounds like a fun story.
When I was in high school, my mom was the receptionist at a beauty shop. After school, the three of us kids would walk there and spend the time until mom was done. My two brothers had trouble with this. But I would entertain the two girls of the owner. I helped them with their piano and homework.
My mom taught us five kids the same. The only way to stay sane and be productive was to stay in prayer quilting dash lady at Comcast dot net

Vera Godley said...

Definitely sounds like a fun read and as a native North Carolinian I would love to read about a story set in our beloved Smokies!

Vera in the middle of NC

Lisa Lickel said...

I love that you think about the personalities of your people when choosing names.

Gail Pallotta said...

Hi Wendy,

Oh fun to meet a kindred spirit in the beauty shop world. Thanks for sharing.

Gail Pallotta said...

Hi Kay,

Thanks for reading about the picnic basket and commenting. It's fun to look back on it now. and I'm glad the editor was such a nice guy.

Gail Pallotta said...

Hi Lori,

It's nice to meet someone with a similar upbringing. My mother started saying prayers with me when I was just a toddler and continued for a long time. I'm so grateful to her.

Gail Pallotta said...

Hi Vera,

It's nice to meet another native North Carolinian. I love those mountains and loved including the breathtaking scenes.

Gail Pallotta said...

Hi Lisa,

Thank you for coming by and reading the interview. I think it's fun to relate my characters to their names.

Sharon Bryant said...

Enter me!!
Conway SC