Nov 282012

The lovely and talented Marilyn Brant (HOLIDAY MAN) tagged me to take part in blogging meme to answer questions about my next book (hence The Next Big Thing title). MIRACLE PIE is done, but it needs to be read by my critique partners before I can publish it. I’m really happy to talk about it. I hope it’s The Next Big Thing! Enjoy the Q&A!

What is the working title of your book? MIRACLE PIE
I hope you love it and don’t think it’s a cookbook about pies.

Where did the idea come from for the book? This is the fourth story in my Miracle Interrupted series. Katie was mentioned in the previous three books. In the first, MUST WORSHIP CATS, her father brought one of her pies to a neighbor’s. From that, it came to me that she made pies for a living and delivered them to nearby restaurants that didn’t have pastry chefs.

For the hero, I’ve been watching the Top Chef series, which gave me the idea that a character in the book (Katie’s friend) would want to star in her own cooking show and the hero would be a director/filmmaker. But as I learned more about the subject, with advice from Gina Black and Sheila Clover English (Circle of Seven Productions) Gabe became a videographer. A lot of the plot evolved from the hero/heroine’s careers.

What genre does your book fall under? Magical realism & contemporary romance.

Which actors would you choose to play your characters in a movie rendition? Maggie Gyllenhaal at age 28, and Simon Baker at 30.

What is the one-sentence synopsis of your book? Katie’s magic is pies, Gabe’s is being alive – but it takes more than magic for a happily ever after.

Will your book be self-published or represented by an agency? Self-published. MIRACLE PIE will probably be out in January, though there’s a possibility it will be available in December.

How long did it take you to write the first draft of your manuscript? Less than two months for the first draft. It’s on the short side, about 63,000 words.

What other books would you compare this story to within your genre? Books by Sarah Addison Allen, and the Friday Harbor series by Lisa Kleypas. They’re all in the same magical realism subgenre.

Who or what inspired you to write this book? When my mother was alive, she was the best pie maker, so I was very pleased to write about pies. Except for her baking skills, my mother was nothing like my heroine, but she was a huge reader and I know she would’ve loved the book.

What else about your book might pique the reader’s interest? In this book, the village gets together to help members of the community who are in need. They do this in a unique way. I enjoyed writing those scenes. If you’re a dog lover, Katie has a 19-year-old Beagle named Happy who’s mentioned often in the book. Happy might even be on the cover. I hope so!


I tagged four wonderful authors to blog about their Next Big Thing next Monday on the Dec. 5th. I’m looking forward to reading their posts!

Michelle Diener (Her newest historical was released this Tuesday: THE EMPEROR’S CONSPIRACY)
Mary Hughes (Biting Oz)
Cynthia D’Alba (Texas Two Step)

What’s the next best thing in your life?

Nov 212012

Michelle Diener is giving 2 copies of her historical novel, THE EMPEROR’S CONSPIRACY, at Magical Musings: one in the US, and the other outside of the US. I’ve read it already in its unedited form and it’s wonderful.

Marilyn Brant is answering questions at her blog about her very cool book that will be out soon: PRIDE, PREJUDICE AND THE PERFECT MATCH.

Don’t you love the title and want to hear more? It’s a meme, and I’m doing one next week about MIRACLE PIE, my upcoming book.

I hope all of you have a wonderful Thanksgiving.

Nov 182012

If you ever wondered what the favorite author word is, it’s DONE! MIRACLE PIE is done and at my editor’s. I revised it twice this week, which was one time too many in a row. As I read it the last time, I wondered if I’d written something similar earlier in the book or just remembered it from the last read.

I sent it to my editor, and she should catch any repetitions. Now I’m taking the week off to play catch up on the non-writing parts of my life. When I start working again next week, I’m going to try for some time management. Wish me luck!

While I’m taking the week off, besides all the not-fun stuff like cleaning the fridge, I’m going to buy all the holiday presents. To get in the mood, I’ll read HOLIDAY MAN by Marilyn Brant. It’s on my Kindle, and I’ll start reading it tonight. I love her light and fun Door County romances.

We’re going to my in-laws for Thanksgiving. I’m making a pumpkin pie and my husband will make carrot cake. I’m thinking of making two pumpkin pies. One for us, because I’m pretty sure there will be no leftovers to take home with us on Thanksgiving. I’ll also be thinking of my next book, which is not one of my series book. I got the idea, and I knew I should write it. After that, I’ll go back to my Miracle Interrupted series.

So, what are your plans this week?

Nov 072012

Last night instead of watching the election’s exit polls, I was writing and watching YouTube videos. I won’t make this post political, but I’ll just say that I hope that both sides work together this time and try to represent the people instead of their party line.

One of the videos I watched last night came because my heroine was hurting and my hero was being tender. I thought listening to the song “Try a Little Tenderness” would help me write the scene. This morning it occurred to me that I’d like the politicians to take the message to heart, too. This scene from the movie Duets shows that if the motivation is strong enough, it can be done.

What this video didn’t show (another video did), was that after the song was over the two cops came up to the singers and said they’d been thinking of doing a duet, but decided they wouldn’t be near as good as the other two.

Wouldn’t you love it if our politicians were that good? And what song would you pick for the next four years?

Nov 032012

Rose the Beagle

We had to put Rose, our 19-year-old Beagle, to sleep yesterday. It was a bad week for us, knowing it was coming. Her appetite and personality were still strong until the end. The rest of her body wasn’t faring as well. We buried her in the backyard and there was a lot of crying. As I write this, I’m crying again. This morning I started to feed her before our other dog, though I knew she was gone. It’s the first thing I thought of when I woke up this morning. And it feels funny to be writing in my office without her rhythmic snoring behind me.

We inherited Rose 2 1/2 years ago, after my father-in-law passed. My mother-in-law had passed about 7 years earlier, and she adored Rose. My father-in-law didn’t adore Rose, but he loved her and was good to her. I like to imagine that she’s with them in Heaven right now and they’re all happy.

I feel blessed that we had her these last 2 1/2 years. My only regret is that we didn’t have her as a puppy, too. She was a very good dog.