Hi and welcome to my blog, Gracen. Please make yourself at home and grab a drink from my hunky cabana boys, Zeke and Jake. So tell us a little about yourself.
GM: Thanks for having me. *grabs a margarita from both cabana boys, while admiring their hunkiness and ponders how I can turn my muse—Dom—into a cabana boy* It’d be so nice having Dom serve me for a change. *winks* Something about myself, huh? That’s always the hardest question. I’m a hopeless daydreamer masquerading as a “normal” person in southern society. I’m a full-time basketball/football/guitar mom for my two sons and a wife to my real-life hero-husband of twenty years. I’m addicted to writing, reading, Alabamafootball and coffee…addictions are not necessarily in order of priority. 😉 Coffee IS nectar from the gods and blending coffee and writing together generates the perfect creative merger. I’m shy and I’m afraid not very interesting. *shrugs* Anything else anyone wants to know, just ask away.
How much of your personality and life experiences are in your writing?
GM: Very little of my life experiences go into my writing. Everything I’ve written so far is paranormal related. My heroine in the Road to Hell series, Madison, shares some qualities with me, like being a devoted mother and her turbulent relationship with her father. Otherwise, none of it is a reflection on my life.
Generally, how long does it take you to write a book?
GM: Anywhere from six months to a year if it’s a full novel of around 100K. If it’s a novella, the shortest time it took me to write one was a week.
What is your writing routine once you start a book?
GM: Ha! I have a very active, young family, so I’m happy to write whenever I get a chance. My only routine is a dedication to try and write a little each day. I don’t always succeed, but it is my daily goal.
Tell us about your latest release or upcoming release. What inspired it?
GM: Well, my latest release is Hell’sPhoenix, which is book two in the Road to Hell series. Since it’s a story that builds upon itself, I cannot discuss book two without giving a little background to the previous book. Book one, Pandora’s Box, is about the heroine, Madison, discovering who she is, what her son is and how her husband fits into everything. And how far she’ll go to protect and save her son. Hell’sPhoenixis aboutMadisonaccepting her fate and facing it head on to save the one man that sacrificed everything for her.
Road to Hell was inspired from a nightmare where a demon/ghost was gunning for my kids. After I woke up and began to realize it was just a dream, I got to thinking…the worst nightmare any parent can endure is when their child is harmed or endangered and there’s nothing we can do about it, but only watch it happen. I experienced this in real life when my eldest started having grand mal seizures. The absolute helplessness of being able to do nothing is crushing. I felt like a failure for years—which is crazy—but that’s what mom’s do, we worry and blame ourselves even when we shouldn’t.
But the nightmare got me to thinking “what if” it was something paranormal and not medical affecting her child? How would she deal with one crisis after another, realizing there is nothing she can do to change what comes from within him? To what lengths would she go to save her child? And that was the inspiration behind the Road to Hell series.
What are your thoughts on love scenes in romance novels, do you find them difficult to write?
GM: Nope, they’re not difficult to write unless I’m trying to push the intimacy too soon. Otherwise, it’s a progression like the story. To me sex is an important aspect of any romantic relationship, so to delete it from a book isn’t natural. But I respect authors who don’t place sex in their romances, as well as readers who don’t like to read those scenes.
What kind of research do you do for your books?
GM: Very little. Sometimes I’ll run a google or wiki search for something specific, like the first dragon myth. Then I build from that mythology and give it my own creation. I prefer to start with a basic mythology and expand on it.
What are some of your favorite things or hobbies to do?
GM: I love to read paranormal romances, and even read a few horror books on occasion. I also love horror and supernatural movies. But my favorite pastime is my family…my sons and husband are the best!
Who are some of your other favorite authors and genres to read?
GM: Paranormal Romance is my favorite genre to read and I have tons of favorite authors.
Among your own books, have you a favorite? A favorite hero or heroine?
GM: Yes. The Road to Hell series are my favorite books, with Hell’sPhoenix(the second book) being my favorite between the two of them. My favorite heroine isMadisonfrom that series, favorite hero would bePhoenix“Nix”, and even though you didn’t ask, my favorite hero-villain is Micah.
Which comes first, the story, the characters or the setting?
GM: The story and characters tend to come together at the same time. The setting falls into place after the rest is decided.
What part of a book has been the easiest to write? The hardest?
GM: The more twisted the scene, the easier it is for me to write them. I don’t know why, but my descriptions of Hell were very clear in my head. But the most basic scenes, like having a conversation in the kitchen, the details elude and frustrate me.
What are the elements of a great romance for you?
GM: Conflict. Not necessarily conflict between the romantic characters, but conflict from within that makes them hesitant to explore mutual attraction. Also, there has got to be believable chemistry between the hero and heroine.
What is the hardest part of writing/the easiest for you?
GM: The hardest part of writing is finding the time to write. The easiest part of writing is the first round of edits after the story’s been written.
Are you in control of your characters or do they control you?
GM: I’m controlled either by my muse, Dom, or the characters. I haven’t decided which has the most power yet. lol
What are some of your current projects?
GM: Genesis Queen is book three in the Road to Hell series and it will ultimately be about the directionMadisonwill take with the destiny that’s been handed to her…will she use it for good or evil? I also have a completed book in a new series—the Kiss series—and I’m halfway through the second book in this series. I just need to find the time to edit the first book. This series is a cross between paranormal/horromance, but it isn’t as graphic in the horror aspect as the Road to Hell series.
Boxers, briefs, boxerbriefs…. Or commando on a man? Why?
GM: Personally, boxerbriefs or commando. In writing, it depends on the character and their personality. Boxerbriefs are just sexier to me on a man than briefs or boxers. And commando is kinda naughty, and oh, so much fun.
What is your strangest habit?
GM: Eating rainbow chip frosting while I write. I started this bad, bad habit in high school—when I was skinny and could afford the extra calories. I don’t indulge in this habit often, but I won’t deny without the icing, I feel like I’m missing a limb when I’m writing.
When you looked in the mirror this morning, what was the first thing you thought?
GM: *laughs* Something along the lines of my horrid bed head. Wish I could wake up sexy like my heroines and like actresses in movies. 😉
What is your favorite pizza?
GM: Pepperoni and green olives. Now I want pizza for dinner! 😉
What is one thing scientists should invent?
GM: How I can shove 30 hours into a 24 hour day would be awesome. I also wish I could eat chocolate all day and lose weight!
If you could time travel, where would you go?
GM: The future because I want to see how advanced we are in a thousand years. I also want to scream “told ya so” when the world doesn’t end on December 21, 2012. *cheeky grin*
What is your favorite thing about being a writer? (Romance or other genres)
GM: The adrenaline of creating characters, discovering their lives, feeling their emotions and falling in love with them. What a god-complex! And kind of like a drug, very addictive.
If I was a first time reader of your books, which one would you recommend I start with and why?
GM: Pandora’s Box and then the rest of the series. Why, is because it’s not the same story line you’re going to see coming from publishers. It’s a mixture of horror and romance—what I’ve termed “horromance”. It will push boundaries that make you cringe in discomfort. The story will play with your emotions. You’ll hold your breath, hoping for the best, but expecting the worst. There’s action, adventure, demons, hot heroes, sexy villains and fallen angels. And just when you think you have something figured out, the story whammies you with the unpredictable.
What do you hope readers take with them after reading one of your stories?
GM: I just hope readers are able to forget their chaotic life for a few hours while they read one of my books. If they can, then I’ve succeeded.
Anything else you want to mention?
GM: Live on the wild side and join me on the Road to Hell. *wicked grin* Thanks for having me with you today, Raine.
Where you can stalk me—not really!—but I would love to meet and interact with you:
Road to Hell series FB Fan Page: http://www.facebook.com/pages/Road-to-Hell-series/112564408814796?ref=ts
My Publisher: www.decadentpublishing.com
Leave a comment, with a valid email, for a chance to win your choice of one of my back titles from Decadent Publishing. I’ll draw a winner tomorrow morning. Good luck!
Pandora’s Box Blurb (book 1):
Where does the road to Hell begin?
What happens when your son turns homicidal overnight and your husband disappears on his way to work? Do you cower in fear or fight for your life? Madison Wescott fights against the odds. Distrustful of a God she doesn’t believe in, she finds herself face-to-face with a world she didn’t know existed and discovers her own soul is darkened with demonic connections.
With good intentions? Or by demonic design?
Phoenix Birmingham bursts intoMadison’s life in a whirlwind of sarcasm and sexual appeal. A hero for the masses—and for her jaded heart—but few will ever know the sacrifices he has made or the sacrifices to come. Discovering her entire life has been influenced by multifaceted paranormal beings,Madisonis determined to defeat the apocalyptic blueprint fate has decreed, but only one man dares to challenge the supernatural forces manipulating them. Even withPhoenix’s aid, can destiny be denied? Or will demonic design prevail while they pay the crucial price with their souls?
In a small, sleepy Alabama town the battle for mankind’s liberty has begun…
Pandora’s Box Excerpt:
“May I?” He held up the medical supplies.
She nodded and watched as he doused gauze with antiseptic. “Dr. Nix at your service,” he said with a grin, two adorable dimples charming her where words failed.
Madisonrolled her eyes, and tipped her head to the side to give him better access. He brushed her hair off her neck, back behind her shoulder. Such a simple gesture, yet it felt terribly personal. The air grew thick and sticky with her awareness of him. She shifted in her seat and crossed her legs.
Madisonstared into his eyes. Green, she thought, his eyes were green, gorgeous and intense, with ridiculously long eyelashes women would fantasize about. If they didn’t, they should. A flicker of compassion, concern, and something else she couldn’t identify flashed in his eyes.
“Ready?” he asked.
The husky tenor of his voice forced her gaze to shift to his mouth. Nice, sexy lips, designed for kissing. She gave a mental shake but couldn’t resist wondering how his mouth would feel on hers.
“Madison?” Humor deepened his voice, a touch of a smile tilted the edges of the lips she’d been fantasizing about, and she realized she still stared at them. “You ready?” he asked again, and her eyes widened in embarrassment over her foolish stupor.
She swallowed hard. “Yeah.” She whispered past the lump in her throat and forced her vision to lock on the wall over his shoulder. Good God, what was wrong with her? Her pulse throbbed like crazy, and she felt woozy. Loss of blood! Must be why she reacted that way. No other explanation made sense.
Even though the antiseptic stung like hell, the gentle touch coming from such a gruff man surprised her. “It’s not bad,” he said, dabbing the blood away. “Just a nick.”
Well, she could nix the blood loss theory. Exhaustion and stress were the only other excuses she could come up with. “I’ve suffered worse.” Her voice sounded off, kind of hoarse. She tried to clear her throat delicately, but he must have noticed her unease, because his perceptive eyes met hers. Again, she thought she caught the edge of concern reflected in their green depths.
“This isn’t the first time he’s attacked you?”
“No. It’s the first time he’s tried to seriously kill me, though.” She sighed as she closed her eyes, ready to give up fighting, the sudden tears threatening to fall. Okay, woozy and acting strange because of strain…not because of him. Seriously, as far as first impressions went, she wasn’t impressed.
PANDORA’S BOX is available now at the following sites in ebook and print formats:
ARe (ebook only): http://www.allromanceebooks.com/product-pandora039sbox-594252-140.html
Smashwords (ebook only): http://www.smashwords.com/books/view/82329
Hell’s Phoenix Blurb (book 2):
Hell’s become more than just a playground for the wicked…
Going to Hell was supposed to save Madison, but knowing she’s dead because of his failure leaves Nix with only one thing to live for. Revenge. With Micah’s help he learns to use his Messianic power. Anything for Mads has become his mantra, even if it means killing innocents to gather the power he needs to succeed. A tsunami he unleashes on aGulfCoast city is stopped with magical interference, and Nix is more than surprised to feelMadison in the opposing magic. Can he and Micah set a trap to lure her out?
Pandora’s Box…once you open it, there’s no turning back!
Madisonhas done the unthinkable, opened Pandora’s Box to save Nix from Hell. And failed. She’s willing to risk her own life to rescue Nix, but she worries about the welfare of her accomplice in the mission and leaving her son behind. Following up on a lead, she’s ambushed by Nix and Micah. Shocked and hurt to discover Nix has become a willing participant of Hell, she’s more certain than ever she won’t escape the demonic fate her husband outlined for her. While in Hell, she discovers denying the emergence of her succubus is futile, which means getting Nix out of Hell after embracing her inner demon just became a very real dilemma…
Hell’s Phoenix Excerpt:
“You’ll heal her promptly,” Micah growled, shifting back into his human persona, as he offered his legs as a pillow for her head. She’d have pushed him away if she could’ve managed to contort her body to that angle.
Madisongaped at the blood darkening her jeans and spreading down her thigh. “That hurts way worse than I thought being shot would.”
“I need to get your pants off, Mads, to heal you.” Nix’s fingers went to the snap of her jeans.
She knocked his hands away. “You’ll heal the others first.”
“He shot the main artery in your thigh, Madison. You’ll bleed out before he finishes with them.” Micah compressed his lips together and spoke as if he ground his teeth together. “I’ve lost you twice. I will not lose you again.”
“Death would at least grant me freedom from you!”
Micah’s mouth flattened in displeasure. “Phoenix, I would ask you to do as she requests.”
“Goddamnit, Mads, I swear I’ll heal them immediately after I take care of you.”
Madisonglared at Nix. “E kawoja ciok tauqelv.” I refuse your healing. Nix spewed curses in Xapil. “Impressive, you’ve learned how to curse in demon.”
Nix scowled. “Stubborn.”
Madisonclenched her teeth in silent mutiny. Nix cupped the back of her head, tugged slightly and kissed her hard on the lips. Excitement zinged through her system. Her attraction to him always presented itself at the most inappropriate moments.
“I find that stubborn trait sexy, baby.”
“Flattery gets you nowhere, Nix.” She winced at the tug against her wounded flesh as he rested her against Micah’s thighs.
“What does?” Nix jerked the hem of one pant leg up and tugged the blade strapped to her ankle out of its harness.
He brandished the knife he’d given her for her thirtieth birthday and grinned. “Does healing them count?”
Nix rolled to his feet and leveled her with his stare. “You’re a hard woman to please.”
“Cease the flirtations with my wife.” Micah’s grip on her shoulders intensified. “Heal those bottom-feeders, and then heal her.”
HELL’S PHOENIX available now at the following sites:
Barnes & Noble: Coming Soon