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Controversial topics, industry news, parallels between events and your writing, topic or genre.

Welcome back to another edition of the Open Book Blog Hop! If you’re new to the series, the authors involved write each week about “life” or “stuff” or topics of importance (at least to us).  We also want to help our readers get to know us a bit better and hopefully through comments and conversations, get to know you all better too.  That being said, please feel comfortable commenting, sharing and generally “talking” to us.  If you’re really excited about it, please share with your friends and family and let them know about my blog and this hop.

Now to the topics of this week: Events/Announcements/Updates.  A few things happened this week.  First of all, as you are probably aware, my fifth book, Gunnin’ for You released a couple of weeks ago.  I’m getting good reviews and people genuinely seem to like it and for that I am grateful.  Danny’s War, which was the book I released before Gunnin’ for You, had been removed from sale while it was included in the Hometown Heroes Box Set.  That set is now no longer available and Danny’s War officially republished today.  So, now, my series is available for sale again.  Yay!!!!

The other thing that happened this week is I had the pleasure of being spotlighted on Uvi Poznansky’s blog.

Where did you get the courage to write your first book for release?

Courage didn’t pop into my head when I thought about first publishing a book. I’ve always talked about writing a book, since I was little. When my husband, Gene, and I were first married, we talked about it, but I just didn’t see how I could get a book published. Remember those days before the internet? How did you find publisher addresses? How did you find someone who could help you along the way? I didn’t know any writers, so I simply didn’t think it was something that I would ever have the opportunity to do. It just seemed so unattainable.

Gene used to always say, “Now there’s something you should put in your book when you write it.” Whenever a funny, weird or stressful situation popped up. I’d think, yep, that would be good, but I wondered who’d even want to read my books?

Then the self publishing boom happened and it started germinating in my head. I did some internet searches, (thank goodness for the internet) and found that there are loads of places to find assistance. Editors are online. Cover designers are online. Business coaches and people and readers are online.

At the time I was working in a law office and it was a horrible experience. Nasty people, nasty bosses, demanding, disrespectful, over-bearing and just plain rude. I found myself getting depressed and sick. Then, one day, it occurred to me that if I started writing, there could possibly come the day that I could support myself on my books. So, I began writing. My first story wasn’t that great, all the usual first time author stuff – head hopping, repetition, all that. But I paid an editor more money than she was worth and got a better idea of what to do. I rewrote that book, but still felt it wasn’t up to par. Then I found my publisher and they re-edited it. That editor came back with notes and comments and we fine tuned my first book into a real, honest to goodness book. I’ve published that book and four others since then. Gunnin’ for You just published on March 8th.

So, courage, isn’t the word I’d necessarily use. Determination is more appropriate I think.

Do you develop a fantasy relationship with your characters? Do they become real in some way?

I hate to say it, but yes. I feel like they are my friends, my family. I know them so well, and all of their little quirks and nuances and when their book is finished, I get a little bit sad for them and hope they will be happy with what I did for them in their story. Does that make sense?

Of course, who wouldn’t love sexy men and the beautiful women who love them? My characters aren’t spoiled billionaires, they are down to earth, working people, who eventually find love but usually have mis-steps along the way. I find it hard not to have a personal relationship with folks like that.

Tell us about your passion for supporting Veterans.

Oh, yes, veterans. Well, to begin with, my family is filled with Veterans. Both of my grandfathers, my father, my brother, two of my sons and my daughter-in-law are all Veterans.

I see stories about Veterans who come home broken, maimed, and shaken from their experiences. Many of them don’t have family members to help them through these tough times. Remember, many people join the military because they have bad home lives and it’s their only way out of a bad experience. So, those folks give up a huge part of their lives to ensure we all sitting here at home can continue to enjoy the freedoms we currently have. But, when they come home, they are often left alone, battling demons brought to them by battles they’ve fought for us. They fall through the cracks because the government has put in place ridiculous amounts of paperwork that must be filled out just to get an appointment to see a doctor.

Not to mention if you are disabled in anyway. Medication isn’t available to them when they need it and let’s face it, if you are struggling mentally or emotionally, and you can’t get the medication to help you, how on earth are you going to find a way to get the stupid paperwork to get you the medicine you need? It simply blows my mind how our country treats these men and women when they come home from protecting us and all we have.

So, because I appreciate what these men and women have done and continue to do, I share it loud and proud. I am an American and I support our troops!

So, tell me about your newest book, Gunnin’ for You.

Oh, I’m so excited about Gunnin’ for You. It’s book 4 of the Rolling Thunder series. Gunnar is Joci’s son. Joci is my heroine from Dog Days of Summer, book 1 in the Rolling Thunder series. Gunnar’s father left him and Joci when he was a couple months old. Joci raised him on her own with intermittent support from surrogate father’s; an uncle, his father’s best friend, etc. But, he always wondered about his father. Just before this story starts, his biological father dies of cancer, but Gunnar discovers some things he never dreamed his father was into and ends up in a somewhat dangerous situation.

While all of this is going on, he meets Emma. Emma unwittingly gets dragged into Gunnar’s father’s mess while battling demons from her own past. It’s a great story and I’m so proud of it.

I hope you’ve enjoyed this edition of Open Book Blog Hop.  Let’s hop on over and see what some of my fellow hoppers are talking about this week. I’m sure there is some interesting conversations going on.