Woot!!! I have Kendra James in the house today for a great interview about herself, her writing, and her new debut, When Hearts Collide, which releases today over at Soul Mate Publishing. She is giving away a free copy to one lucky commenter here today :)
Welcome aboard, Kendra. I'm so excited to have you here today. Can you tell us a little about yourself? I’m a registered nurse who lives in London, Ontario with one dog and three cats. I’m retired from hospital nursing and an the nurse for a children residential treatment center. I love the three R’s, reading, writing, and horseback riding. As I don’t have my horse anymore, I have more time for the first two.
What is the most romantic thing your significant other or anyone has done for you?
Tell me my dream of being published would come true.
Do you ever write in your PJ’s? Sometimes and sometimes if the muse is evasive I’ll put on my purple fairy T-shirt or my Tinker bell top.
What are your pet peeves? False advertising, telemarketers.
Cats or dogs? I love dogs, I only have one right now, a collie-cross named Tiff. I had two other dogs until a few months ago, Shoona, Tiff’s sister, and Mister, a Chihuahua with a heart problem.
Cats love me. None of my three cats were picked by me. My white cat, Zeus, hid in my car in 1997 when I moved off the farm. She thinks she owns me. Jack, my lovely gray cat, I inherited when my daughter moved to Fort MacMurray. Jinx, a tabby, also from my daughter was dropped off several years ago. She’s like the Eveready bunny. Well in her twenties, she just keeps on going. It becomes a contest as to who can monopolize my lap and try to help with my writing.
White wine or red? A sweet white, or a strawberry Zinfandel
Coffee or tea? Coffee please, double cream and sugar, or better yet, a large French vanilla cappuccino
Vanilla or chocolate ice cream? Chocolate of course, unless it’s French vanilla
What are 4 things you never leave home without? A note pad, multiple pens, my ipad, and my lipstick.
Laptop or desktop for writing? My MacBook.
Where and when do you prefer to do your writing? After I fade for a bit in the evening, then rouse and write till one or two in the morning.
If you were deserted on an island, who are 3 famous people you would want with you? Harrison Ford, Sean Connery, Pearce Bronson.
An actor you have a crush on? Richard Gere
What is a movie or TV show that you watched recently and really enjoyed? Tower Heist
What made you decide to be an author? I had no choice. I had to, had to, do it.
How did you choose the genre you write in? I write in several genres. I don’t feel that a writer needs to be confined to any one genre. I wrote poetry since grade two, was published for a poem in grade three. I wrote a lot of poetry that I never showed anyone until later in life. When I broke my hand getting a horse on a trailer, I had time off from my nursing job and started writing children’s stories and a romance that still might get published. I love writing mystery and adding a touch of medical to it.
Are you a panster or a plotter and why? Panster, but I am trying to become a dreaded plotter as I think my writing might and would definitely be more organized.
Is there a particular author who may have influenced you? Oh, there are so many, Taylor Caldwell, Victoria Holt, Michael Palmer, Lee Child, Harlen Cobin, Jodi Picoult.
What is your all time favorite book? Sacagewa. Anything by Taylor Caldwell or Jodi Picoult.
What is your favorite sentence or quote in your new release?
I liked my beginning before editing as I love doing anaphora.
Molly Tanner is choosing flight over fight. She is choosing to run away and let someone else crusade for her. She is choosing to abandon her nursing career, her friends, her home. As she clutches the leather-wrapped steering wheel of her Cavalier, her grandmother's favorite saying echoes in her head. "No one ever said life was fair.”
Well, wasn't that the truth. But is her choosing to flee, the right decision?
But with that cut, I guess I will go with:
The silence was eerie—no child’s laughter, no dog barking, no male voice to send her heart hurtling out of control. No sound at all, just the hush of hollow spaces. She let the pillow absorb her tears.
How much trouble did your characters give you while writing your new release? Which one? I related with Molly as I am a nurse but I think the most trouble was having her have had trouble in her nursing career without people thinking she was a bad person.
Where do you get your ideas from? Everywhere. I just don’t have time to write all the books I want to.
How did you choose your title? Another thing that just came to me. The book starts off with Molly fleeing her home and her career. She misses hitting a deer but the oncoming Jaguar is not so lucky. The story evolves from the collision, so WHEN HEARTS COLLIDE, just seemed the perfect title.
How do you cure writer’s block? Do a wash, organize my writing area, have music in the background and if that doesn’t help, I go for a walk and hope the muse is there when I get back. But writing is really putting your butt in the chair and the hands to the keep board. Even if you write garbage, you are still better than a blank page.
Writing a poem to start off sometimes helps.
Do you have any advice for an aspiring writer? Keep at it. Take courses, join writer’s groups. Test the waters by entering writing contests. The feedback can be priceless. My friend, Brian Henry, a writing workshop teacher, says it takes three things to be published, talent, luck and persistence and if you have even two of those you can be published.
What sacred advice have you been giving by another writer? Write it, rewrite it, then get it out there.
Where can your readers stalk you? I have two websites, or I will have when my son finishes my websites. (Did I mention it’s not always a good idea to have family do these things. They don’t always have the same vision or urgency.) My website for Kendra James (pen name for my romance writing), http://www.kendrajames.net/ is up and more will be added to it. My other website, http://www.bevirwin.com/, is still very much a work in progress. My son promises soon.
Tell us about your new release: WHEN HEARTS COLLIDE is a medical romance about a nurse, suspended from her nursing job, stops to assist at an accident scene. She is attracted to the semiconscious man but stunned when he asks her to care for his daughter so she does not end up in foster care again. Pretending to be his wife and mother of his gorgeous daughter proves to be more than she has bargained for when she looses her heart to both of them.
It's been wonderful having you here. Thank you so much for stopping by, Kendra.
Everyone: You can get your copy of When Hearts Collide over at Soul Mate Publishing.
AVAILABLE NOW @ Soul Mate Publishing: The Swan Cove Murders
Release Date December 28th: Secrets of Jenkins Bridge