Interview with Shayne Ford, Author of REX

What can you tell us about your new release, REX?

REX is the first book of the HOUSE OF LIONS Series, a suspenseful, delicious, dark billionaire romance that features Luna Rae Winter, a San Francisco pre-Law college student, who spends her summer break on the Golden Coast with her best friend, Frankie Mendoza, and begins an emotional, lustful journey of self-discovery with a handsome stranger who initiates her in an adventurous, sensual life she’s never planned for or envisioned before.

A few years older, Rex Jackson is a political science student heavily involved in his family business, a multi-billion conglomerate run by his stepfather and brother.

He feels an instant attraction for Luna Rae, and just as quickly, he knows what she needs from him.

The chemistry between them is off the charts, but there’s a catch. Liking her too much puts her in danger, so he needs to take precautions.

Rex Jackson and his older brother used to get involved with the same women, but this time, he wants Luna only for himself.

This book ends in a cliffhanger. There are several books available right now and more to come. The story will be complete in the last book of the series. This series is still a work in progress.

What or who inspired you to become an author?

I had a deep love for books and stories since I can remember. I grew up surrounded by books that I read over and over again. Up to this day, my favorite place to shop is a bookstore. I could spend hours and hours browsing, checking covers, and reading excerpts.

I wrote my first story when I was sixteen. I wrote installments, and my best friend devoured them.

My first ever story was not different than what I write today. It was steamy, adventurous, and suspenseful, and it had a dominant hero who teased and tormented the woman he fell for.
I love to write emotions and angst and the battle ensuing between imperfect people who fall in love.

Life inspired me to become an author. There was a big writing pause between my teenage years and the moment I started to write fiction again a few years back. Life got in the way, served me a few harsh lessons, and forced me to spend a lot of time in my head, introspecting.

Then one day, a story came to me as I was walking my dog. And then another one, and another one. I knew I had to put them down, but it took me a while until I found the courage to start writing again.

I wrote 60+ books so far, and I have many more writing projects and book ideas to materialize.

What’s on your top 5 list for the best books you’ve ever read?

I don’t have a top 5 best books list. I wouldn’t know how to choose and categorize them.

To me, a good book is a book I finish. A story that I like. A book that doesn’t hold my attention is not necessarily bad. It just doesn’t fit my taste. I believe every book has its readers, and as a reader, it’s a privilege to have a large variety of books to choose from these days.

Say you’re the host of a literary talk show. Who would be your first guest? What would you want to ask?

I would love to interview Collen Hoover. I would ask her what inspires her and what made her wrote the first book.

What’s your favorite thing about writing?

My absolute favorite thing about writing is writing. I am one of the blessed authors who enjoy writing more than anything else.

I love to get inspired, imagine the story in my head, and dive into it. Living in a fictional world is fascinating to me.

I feel my characters. I laugh and cry and fall in love as they do. It’s cathartic. It’s escapism at its best.

I also love to create the actual product—cover, formatting, title, synopsis.

And last but not least, I love to get positive feedback from my readers. If they feel what I feel when I write that story, my job is done.

What is a typical day like for you?

I work anywhere between 10 to 12 hours. The outcome of a typical day of writing is up to 8,000-9,000 words per day. I try to clump up my writing days together, so I finish the first draft in a few days or a week. Sprinting is more efficient for me when it comes to putting the story down. It helps me focus and gives me a sense of accomplishment.

On my non-writing days, I work on editing, cover design, formatting, newsletter publishing, and marketing.

I work every day–– weekends and holidays included.

To balance the hours I spend in front of my computer, I work out daily–– two and a half hours of walking, weight lifting, spinning, and dancing. Sometimes swimming.

I watch movies, read, or talk on the phone while spinning.

I don’t watch TV or spend much time on social media.

What scene from REX was your favorite to write?

I loved writing the scene when Rex takes Luna to a cave by the ocean and spends the night with her there.

Do you have a motto, quote, or philosophy you live by?

Live an authentic life aligned with your values. And live in such a way to add positive things to your life and other people’s lives.

Shayne Ford is the author of the new book REX

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Interview with Sara L. Hudson, Author of Space Oddities

What can you tell us about your new release, Space Oddities?

NASA, pole dancing, and politics! Space Oddities is the third book in the best selling romantic comedy Space Series, featuring Trish Garrett and Ian Kincaid. They’ve been circling each other for a while and now Trish’s past has caught up with her and she needs to lean on Ian for help. Friends to Lovers, Fake Relationship, Laugh out Loud moments and, of course, steamy sexytimes.

What or who inspired you to become an author?

My parents. I was all set to major in business and take over my father’s company when my dad, at college orientation, said to my mom– this really doesn’t sound like Sara. And he was right. So I switched to Creative Writing, having always liked telling stories and entertaining people.

What’s on your top 5 list for the best books you’ve ever read?

The Giver by Lois Lowry, Tale of Two Cities by Charles Dickens, Neanderthal Seeks Human by Penny Reid, and Hosed by Pippa Grant and Lili Valente.

Say you’re the host of a literary talk show. Who would be your first guest? What would you want to ask?

I’d really like to invite a whole mix of authors, everyone from Dan Brown to Janet Evanovich to JR Ward to Helen Fielding and sit back and watch magic happen (while serving cocktails and charcuterie boards)

What’s your favorite thing about writing?

Working in my pajamas.

What is a typical day like for you?

Alarm (not a morning person), coffee (at least one cup before I function properly), get kids off to school, take a walk (if I’m feeling motivated), shower (if I’m feeling motivated, haha) and write (while trying not to fall into the social media rabbit hole).

What scene from Space Oddities was your favorite to write?

The pole dancing scenes. Never knew there were so many amusing names for pole maneuvers.

Do you have a motto, quote, or philosophy you live by?

I think Dory from Finding Nemo really hit the nail on the head with “Just Keep Swimming”

Sara L. Hudson is the author of the new book Space Oddities

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Interview with Kelly Collins, Author of Broken Hart

What can you tell us about your new release, Broken Hart?

Broken Hart came about because fans of my popular Aspen Cove series wanted to know more about the Lockhart brothers, four sexy construction brothers who helped build The Guild Creative Center. They popped up here and there and because of demand, I gave them their own series which Broken Hart is book one. This starts with the oldest brother Noah who finds out the woman who broke his heart is back in town. Will he succeed at keeping her at bay, or will his heart rule his world and let her back in? Readers are going to love this second chance romance.

What or who inspired you to become an author?

Actually, it was a flight from New York to Colorado where a very handsome man sat next to me on the plane and my creative mind wondered “what if” a woman met the perfect man on a plane, fell asleep, did something totally inappropriate to him, and then found out he was her new boss. That started my writing career with a book now called Dream Maker.

What’s on your top 5 list for the best books you’ve ever read?

Oh wow, only five? Well, here goes:

The first romance book I ever read was A Knight in Shining Armor by Jude Deveraux so one of my all-time faves.

Next would be The Royal Treatment by Melanie Summers, it’s laugh out loud funny.

Third would be One Thousand Boy Kisses by Tillie Cole, that one made me cry.

Fourth would be First Grave on the Right by Darynda Jones, I fell in love with paranormal reading this book.

Fifth would be The Inside Out series by Lisa Renee Jones who can weave a wicked tale.

As you can see I have a very diverse reading palette.

Say you’re the host of a literary talk show. Who would be your first guest? What would you want to ask?

What a great question. I’d totally want to interview Stephen King and ask if he had trouble sleeping at night.

What’s your favorite thing about writing?

There’s the fact that it saves me a fortune in therapy, but in truth, I love exploring love relationships, the conflict that ensues and making sure that everyone gets their happily ever after.

What is a typical day like for you?

I have the best job in the world. I get to choose who to hang out with each day and when I get tired of them I write them out of the book. I’m a plotter which means, each day I sit down to work, I know exactly what I’m doing. I strive for one or two chapters a day. My days are long because not only do I write but I do everything else as well. A twelve-hour day isn’t unusual but I wouldn’t want to do anything else.

What scene from Broken Hart was your favorite to write?

The best scene in the book is the black moment when all seems lost and that’s because I know they’ll soon get their HEA. I can’t tell you what that scene is because I don’t want to spoil the book, but it involves my favorite things like a hot guy, good food, and a sassy heroine.

Do you have a motto, quote, or philosophy you live by?

Yes, I do, It’s never hard to be kind. I try to Live for Love.

Kelly Collins is the author of the new book Broken Hart

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The Story Behind Hunting Daybreak by E.A. Chance

By E.A Chance

I’ve always been fascinated with cosmology, so a few years ago, I got the spark of an idea about what it would be like to live in the aftermath of a global solar flare that has destroyed the power grid and decimated the human population. The Shattered Sunlight series is the result. When I began researching for the series, I never dreamed I’d be writing this story amid a global pandemic. There were days when I was creating Hunting Daybreak that what I wrote hit a little close to home. Fortunately, our situation is nowhere near as dire as what Dr. Riley Poole and company faced, and gratefully, we have an end in sight.

That’s not the case for Riley. Hunting Daybreak begins days after Riley has made the gut-wrenching choice to leave her thirteen-year-old daughter, Julia, behind at her uncle’s ranch in western Virginia and head out with her new husband, Coop, to learn the fate of her two younger children Colorado. Traveling on horseback, Riley and Coop run into trouble right away when they’re hit with drenching downpours that go on for days. Their journey only goes downhill from there.

Riley and Coop cross paths with old acquaintances early on and combined resources to travel together but soon learn that one member of their group has put them in grave danger. This forces them to stay one step ahead of a hostile, newly formed government. In the middle of all this chaos, Riley and Coop get life-altering news that further jeopardizes their trek’s success.
Will Riley have the wit and courage to cross a continent and reunite her family?

Riley has been one of my favorite characters to write because she’s tougher than she knows but only sees her flaws and weaknesses. She’s an orthopedic surgeon, which is a hugely male-dominated profession. She’s five-feet tall with fiery red curls and suffered from PTSD due to the tragic death of her first husband. She’s left alone to care for their three children and continue her medical practice. Believing she’s been dealt the worst life has to offer, she’s thrust into a devastating post-apocalyptic world.

Riley comes from a place where I believe most of us are capable of far more than we give ourselves credit for. I’ve wondered many times in the past year how many of us have discovered an inner reserve we didn’t know we possessed? I’ve heard many say they’ve been pushed to the edge but have found the strength to continue, and sometimes thrive. To me, this is what life is about, growing, learning, overcoming, conquering! We all have that inner superhero. It’s only a matter of tapping into it.

E.A. Chance is the author of the new book Hunting Daybreak

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Interview with Dan Petrosini, One of the Authors of Dead Silent

What can you tell us about your new release, Dead Silent?

The Barrow Case included in this eighteen book collection, is a prequel to the Luca Series. It’s about the case that shaped Frank Luca as a homicide detective. A young girl was brutally murdered and as the investigation unfolded, a consensus of who the killer was formed. The problem for Luca was he didn’t think there was enough evidence. Before it was solved, there was another death and another devastated family.

What or who inspired you to become an author?

I’ve been writing & making up stories since I was ten. At that time, there wasn’t a person, besides my mom who encouraged me in anything I did. I started reading some of the Hardy Boys books and others about guys with cars and girls and was hooked.

What’s on your top 5 list for the best books you’ve ever read?

The Count of Monte Christo, A Day in the Life of Ivan Desinovich, Grapes of Wrath, Lolita & Gulag Archipelago.

Say you’re the host of a literary talk show. Who would be your first guest? What would you want to ask?

This is a tough one. Rather than pick a raconteur like Hemingway, I’ll go with a biographer like Walter Isaacson. Writing about someone who lived long ago and bringing it to life in an entertaining way is a skill all writers need. It would also be interesting to learn about their approach to research.

What’s your favorite thing about writing?

Having the spark for a story and making it real. It’s not easy, as I am not an outliner but I enjoy going where the characters take me.

What is a typical day like for you?

Rarely a day goes by that I don’t write. Most days, I sit in front of my lap top and try not to get too distracted by social media and get the words down. Some days they come easier than others where they must be forced. I’m not a fast writer. It takes me four – five hours to get my 1000 words written.

What scene from Dead Silent was your favorite to write?

Interviewing the father of the victim when he’s caught lying.

Do you have a motto, quote, or philosophy you live by?

Here are two – The Price of Discipline is Always Less Than the Cost of Regret. & Live like it’s your last day but learn like you’re going to live forever.

Dan Petrosini is one of the authors of Dead Silent

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Interview with Jule Owen, Author of Elidir

What can you tell us about your new release, Elidir?

Isobel Twelvetrees and Mo Llewelyn are drawn together across societal divides. They search for clues to the truth in their history, but their relationship threatens those in power.

Elidir is the second book in The Recoverist Quartet, a science fiction story for young adults of any age. It is set in the same world I created in The House Next Door trilogy, but 350 years further into the future. It tells the story of Isobel Twelvetrees and why she was rejected by her people and left outside her city walls to die.

My stories imagine a future transformed by climate change and technology. The British Isles near the end of the twenty-fifth century is unrecognizable to twenty-first-century eyes. Rising sea levels and extreme weather have transformed England’s green pastures to dust and moved the population north. The privileged retreat to climate-controlled cities. The rest survive the best they can, exposed to superstorms and lack of water as the seas rise steadily and transform the coasts.

Elidir is an anomaly. It is a small place built around a hollow Welsh mountain. It contains the remnants of the British Isles’ cultural heritage and has been erased from maps to protect it from destruction. The documents the archive contains are dangerous in the wrong hands, and Isobel’s and Mo’s curiosity leads them into danger.

What or who inspired you to become an author?

I have written stories since I was a very young child. I never really stopped, I just learned how to write longer stories, to finish a book and a while after that I worked out how to finish a book other people wanted to read.

What’s on your top 5 list for the best books you’ve ever read?

Gosh this is a very hard question. I will interpret ‘best’ as ‘books I enjoyed most’ because beyond a certain point the judgement of the quality books is highly subjective.

At a push, my top all-time top 5 would be:

Wuthering Heights by Emily Bronte

Beloved by Toni Morrison

Orlando by Virginia Woolf

Frankenstein by Mary Shelly

Oryx and Crake by Margaret Atwood

They are all beautifully written, entirely absorbing worlds with unforgettable characters. In case you are wondering, two of them are ghost stories, one of them a fantasy novel (verging on speculative fiction) and the other two science fiction, with Frankenstein being the original text that spawned a whole genre.

Say you’re the host of a literary talk show. Who would be your first guest? What would you want to ask?

I’d probably bring Terry Pratchett back from the dead (generally a good idea IMHO) and ask him who in his life inspired his characters.

What’s your favorite thing about writing?

Making up worlds and naming things.

What is a typical day like for you?

Meditation, exercise, sitting at a desk and typing.

What scene from Elidir was your favorite to write?

The one where Isobel and Mark meet.

Do you have a motto, quote, or philosophy you live by?

Strong intention, low attachment.

Jule Owen is the author of the new book Elidir

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Interview with Michelle Mankin, Author of Storm

What can you tell us about your new release, Storm?

Storm is a small-town childhood best friends to lovers beach romance.

What or who inspired you to become an author?

Music inspired me to become an author. Musicians and their backstories, the reasons why they write their songs moves me.

What’s on your top 5 list for the best books you’ve ever read?

I love reading. Romance is my escape. I like writing romance as much as reading it. And talking about favorite books with other authors and readers at signings is one of my favorite things to do. My favorite books like songs change depending on my mood. Some current favorites: Lady Luck by Kristen Ashley, It’s So Easy Duff by Mckagan, Hunger Like No Other by Kresley Cole, Try Me by Olivia Cunning, and Slammed by Colleen Hoover.

Say you’re the host of a literary talk show. Who would be your first guest? What would you want to ask?

If I were a literary talk show host I would invite my favorite rock stars on the show and ask them to tell me the stories behind all my favorite songs.

What’s your favorite thing about writing?

My favorite thing about writing is when the characters tell me their story, and I write it down, and they surprise me by doing things I didn’t plan. Don’t tell me they’re not real, lol.

What is a typical day like for you?

On a typical day, I write for about 5 hours, then I break for treadmill dance/walking. Haven’t tried it? You should. It’s fun. Then more writing, if I’m lucky or marketing, accounting, admin stuff.

What scene from Storm was your favorite to write?

My favorite scene to write in STORM is the one with the BIG surprise!

Do you have a motto, quote, or philosophy you live by?

One of my mottos in life is joy is giving to others.

Michelle Mankin is the author of the new book Storm

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Interview with Rory Surtain, Author of Sorrow’s Twin

What can you tell us about your new release, Sorrow’s Twin?

Sorrow’s Twin is the third book in the Demon in Exile Series.

The premise of the Demon in Exile Series is that Colivar is a Kingdom plagued by seemingly random attacks from the Infernal Domain. For centuries, the Order of the Vigil has fought to stem the demonic tide and preserve the Realm, but politics and uncivil wars have depleted their ranks. For reasons unknown, the High Prince of Hell has decided to lend them a hand in the form of a soul from a powerful House of War, a demon in exile.

Part action, part mystery, and part psycho-drama, Sorrow’s Twin depicts Ara Storm and Company locked in a sinister conflict with an enemy hidden deep in the rainforests on the Realm’s eastern border. A clan of heretics have been cutting deals with a demonic entity that calls itself the Emperor, and a campaign to hunt them down becomes more deadly than anyone imagined. Ara Storm finds himself in the worst of all possible positions as he confronts the Emperor’s Children and the dark forces within himself.

Sorrow’s Twin goes places I’d never thought possible when I began writing the Series, diving deep into the mind of the MC and his impact on the characters around him. With the (mostly) first-person narration, there’s always a conflict within the MC’s view of himself, a battle between hero and anti-hero or human and demon, and also a balance to strike between the MC’s strengths, flaws, and commitments and the personal price he pays for each.

Ara Storm, the MC, isn’t a shapeshifter as some might expect from the book’s cover, but rather he harbors some darker paranormal abilities that make him more than effective as a demon-slayer for the Realm and a general menace to himself and those around him. Ara Storm’s schemes don’t always go as planned, but when they do, it can be a real nightmare.

The Demon in Exile novels offer a much more urban fantasy flow, focusing on the characters, their connections, and a well-twisted plot.

What books are currently on your nightstand?

Forged by Benedict Jacka and We Ride the Storm by Devin Madson, but most of my time is spent editing Wind Catcher, Book 4 of the Demon in Exile series, revising and proofing ahead of its publication later this year. Text flows differently on a Kindle screen than it does on a PC and inspiration jumps off of the page.

What advice would you give your teenage self?

No one is ever as good or as bad as you think they are, so don’t judge.

If you had an extra hour each day, how would you spend it?

Writing, probably a coming-of-age Warhammer 40K novel. I’ll get there someday.

What makes your world go round? Why does it bring you joy?

An unscripted blend of family, coffee, and creativity drive my day, allowing me the freedom to choose the meaning of the next minute, or the last.

What scene from Sorrow’s Twin was your favorite to write?

There are two pivotal scenes that come to mind, both covering the introductions between Ara Storm, the eighteen-year-old MC, and two very different Kings in the land of Colivar. In each scene, there is a sense of mystery, challenge, and surprise with a back-and-forth in terms of who’s really in control. Great fun.

Rory Surtain is the author of the new book Sorrow’s Twin.

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Interview with William Bernhardt, Author of Final Verdict

What can you tell us about your new release, Final Verdict?

Final Verdict is the sixth and final installment in the Daniel Pike legal thriller series. Pike finally confronts his arch-nemesis, Conrad Sweeney—but not in the way you might expect. Pike takes on the toughest case of his career, while also trying to learn his family’s secrets and why his father died in prison. Meanwhile, Pike and the Central American cartel he has battled throughout this series also have a final showdown.

What books are currently on your nightstand?

I’ve been reading Stranger in a Strange Land by Robert Heinlein. I read it as a kid and loved it, but it has since been republished with an additional 60,000 words that were cut out by request of the original publisher. Now it’s a much longer, richer, all-encompassing experience. After that, I’m going to read The Prime Minister, the final volume in an Anthony Trolloppe series. Trollope is one of my favorites writers—and where I got the idea for writing a six-novel series. Back in the Victorian era, Trollope did it twice!

What advice would you give your teenage self?

Stay the course. Don’t be impatient. If you keep your eyes on your dream and keep working, you will get there.

If you had an extra hour each day, how would you spend it?

I’d play more tabletop games. I love board games, but after work, piano (I’m also a musician), reading, etc., I don’t always have time. A favorite activity for me and my children is sitting around a table challenging ourselves with a good game. It’s a great way to spend time together, face-to-face, having fun.

What makes your world go round? Why does it bring you joy?

I love my children. I love my cat, sisters, parents. Family time is the best. The older I get, the more I appreciate the importance of family.

What scene in Final Verdict was your favorite to write?

Chapter 21! Because that chapter has a guest appearance by Kenzi Rivera, who will be the central character in my next series. It was a blast doing this “crossover event” and allowing the two protagonists to meet. They are very different so, of course, they don’t get along so well. Kenzi’s first novel, Splitsville, comes out in May.

William Bernhardt is the author of the new book Final Verdict.

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New Mystery and Thriller Books to Read | January 19

Hold on to the edge of your seat as we hunt for clues and solve the case with these exciting new mystery and thriller books for the week! There are so many bestselling authors with new novels for you to dive into this week including Judith Lucci, Fiona Quinn, William Bernhardt, Lisa Gardner, Jessica Fellowes, and many more. Enjoy your new mystery, thriller, and suspense novels. Happy reading!



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