Welcome to 10 – 4 Tuesday!
10 – 4 Tuesday is a quick way to get to know an author and their latest release. I will ask our guest to share 10 things about themselves and their book and then 4 questions for fun 🙂 So let’s get started.
Today I’d like to welcome my awesome friend and Words With Friends partner author Nikki Lynn Barrett! She’ll be sharing her 10, followed by her 4 and then an excerpt of her book The Secret Santa Wishing Well 🙂 (don’t you just love the title?)
WOOT WOOT Nikki, thanks for joining us for 10 – 4 Tuesday 🙂
First the 10:
To start out, tell us a bit about yourself.
First off, thank you SO much for having me here today! Don’t mind me if I get a little emotional, lol. This has been a dream for me for years.
Anyways, umm….about me? I’m crazy! No, okay, not really…but I feel like it sometimes. I live in Arizona with my husband and my 3 year old son. I’m an avid reader. I’ve been writing for years. Like, since elementary school. I went from novels to poems, and to song lyrics, and fully back to novels now. I can’t write a short story if my life depended on it. Kudos to those who can and make them work. LOL. I’m addicted to Words with Friends, raspberry tea, and I hate to give public speeches, but won’t blink an eye to get up in front of a crowd and sing.
And I just have to add that your son is so adorable:) What’s genre (s) do you write?
I’m all over the place. I love contemporary, suspense, some paranormal. I have ideas in YA, thriller, horror, supernatural, plus the above mentioned. I’m eclectic in many ways and writing is included.
That’s awesome Nikki, I love the fact you have ideas in so many genres! Share the blurb from THE SECRET SANTA WISHING WELL.
I’d be glad to! 🙂
The magic of Christmas has been lost to Jacob Winston. At the suggestion of his ill sister, Jacob takes a job as a Secret Santa at the mall, hoping to restore his Christmas spirit. Even that doesn’t seem to work, until a special little boy ambles up to make a very special wish…
Cheyenne Jensen is struggling to raise her two kids without the help of her ex-husband who refuses to acknowledge his daughter’s existence and doesn’t provide for the son he does. This Christmas is shaping up to be as heartbreaking as the last, until her son Ben’s kind actions lead a stranger to them.
Ah, but it’s Christmas time and the magic has begun.
When Jacob and Cheyenne meet, neither can deny their immediate attraction to one another. As situations arise that require they spend more time together, their feelings grow stronger and stronger.
With Christmas fast approaching, the pair learn what matters most in life. Now, if only they could ditch the ghost of Christmases past.
Maybe this holiday will bring some wishes come true- for everyone after all.
Love it…sounds like an inspirational and emotional read. If you wrote a book about your life, what would you title it?
True Confessions of an oddball? LOL. Umm…That’s a good question. Wow. You’ve kinda stumped me here. I’m kind of shy when I’m around people, other than those I really know, so maybe something like What Lies Within, because really, only a select few know the real me.
Where do you prefer to write?
My library. It’s not finished yet, it’s an absolute disaster, but that’s where my computer is. I’m surrounded by tons of books, and I have a cool desk my husband got from his dad that he gave to me. I turn on the music, and write. Only when my 3 year old goofy boy isn’t home, though, because I can’t write with him home. His room is next to mine, and he doesn’t play quietly. Either that or he comes in and out of the library and he just wants to play. LOL
What’s the hardest part of writing for you?
It’s between finding the time, or writing when I’m not tired. I have a lot of sleep problems, and because I have a visual impairment, it’s hard to write when I’m very tired, because the computer screen glare starts hurting my eyes.
What was your favorite part about writing The Secret Santa Wishing Well?
How easily the idea fully came into place. I’d had the bare bones of this story in my head for awhile, and when my son started his preschool in August, I had the time to write, I played with a few stories that first week, and then all of a sudden, The Secret Santa Wishing Well called to me. Yes, I started writing a Christmas book in August. In Arizona, that’s not easy. It was still 110+, we had our monsoon….Yeah, you get the idea LOL. I love how the characters really made their mark in the book.
That’s quite an undertaking writing Christmas in August…I’m not sure I’d have been able to do it without cranking up the air and surrounding myself by some holiday decorations! lol What makes your book different than other books in the same genre?
Other than the fact that no other books have been written by Nikki Lynn Barrett? LOL. Haha. Umm, in seriousness…I think many people can relate to this book. I made it so true to life. I myself have been losing my true Christmas spirit. For the past few years, it just hasn’t been the same for me as it was when I was a child. I try to make the best of it so that my little man has some kind of magic in the is world to look forward to. In The Secret Santa Wishing Well, I took that broken Christmas spirit and gave it to my characters, but with one little boys wish, it changes their world. I took the magic of Christmas through a child’s eyes again.
What do you hope readers walk away with when they finish The Secret Santa Wishing Well?
I’m hoping that amidst all the shopping and commercialism that this special holiday has turned into, that there are still people looking for that true magic of Christmas. It’s an emotional book, but there are plenty of feel good moments that I hope opens people’s eyes to the way things used to be. Not that I’m a person for living in the past, but so much changes all the time, you just can’t help but miss some of the things you grew up with, you know?
Love that Nikki…very nicely said. Can you tell us a little bit about your current WIP?
Sure I can! My next book, currently untitled, is about a country star that has made some difficult choices in life. She started out young, and with her family support, she made it big in her teenage years. But as stardom grew, so did some of her bad choices. Now she’s on the verge of a comeback, but a tragedy takes her to Texas. (Sensing a theme here? Emotional roller coaster? LOL) She has to make amends with her past, and with her family, while falling in love.
Now the 4:
YAY!!! You’ve won the fifty-fifty drawing at the local school carnival to appear on a reality television show. You can pick one of these 3 shows—the outdoorsy last person standing show SURVIVOR, a reality cooking show CHOPPED where you compete against top chefs in cooking challenges, or DANCING WITH THE STARS. Which one will you choose and why?
I don’t think I could do SURVIVOR. I’m klutzy. I also don’t always pay attention, and I would totally have my camera on me and would be snapping pictures and get too distracted LOL!
I’m HORRIBLE at cooking! I’ve only just started to enjoy cooking, and I’ve just barely begun to graduate from boxed dinners. I don’t think CHOPPED is up my alley.
That leaves DANCING WITH THE STARS. Now, mind you, I can’t dance worth anything, I’m horribly uncoordinated, but I’ll give it a shot. Give me a hot dancer to show me the way, and I’d be a little more than enticed to give it a shot. LOL
You were in a head on collision with Santa and his reindeer! Whew…everyone is okay, but the accident was caused by you running a red light! Now you’re in court and Judge Judy sentences you to a year of duties where you’ll need to take the place of one of the following holiday mascots….who will you choose? The Easter Bunny, The Tooth fairy, The Grim Reaper, Santa, Uncle Sam, Cupid…or another. And what are you basing your choice on?
Okay, how did you know BEFORE this interview that I was badly coordinated? Have you been spying on me? :0
It’s a toss up between Santa or Cupid. I know a few people that need Cupid’s Arrow, before they drive me batty, and well, every child (Mostly) Looks up to Santa 🙂
You have the awesome opportunity to travel back in time and make yourself the inventor of anything….what would you choose to invent?
Oh my…this could be fun, but…ONE thing? Sigh
Braille. I have the best of friends, one of which is completely blind. I am always in awe of how well she adapts and how far she’s come. I know when I first moved to Arizona from El Paso, they were not anywhere near as advanced as they are here. While I’ve never learned Braille, it intrigues me, and it gives those without the gift of vision a way to read. And now, of course there’s audio, which opens up a whole no world of being able to ‘read’ books.
You get to have a book a day sent to you for the rest of your life…do you want your reads sent in ebook format for your ereader or do you want it in print—paperback or hardcover?
Print!! I love my Kindle, I do. But I grew up with print. I can never have the feeling replaced of holding a print book in my hands, to fill my shelves up with them. I love paperbacks, they’re easier to hold when reading. My husband prefers hardbacks though LOL but I will go paperback all the way!
Thanks for being sharing your 10 and your 4 Nikki…I enjoyed having you visit and LOVED your answers! Please share an excerpt of your book. 🙂
You really did go all out with those questions <Grin> But here you go. I’ve got an excerpt for ya 🙂
A pull on his Santa suit drew his attention. He looked down, right into the round face of a child with wide blue eyes.
“ Hello there. Where’s your mommy, bud?”Jacob asked, speaking softly to the boy, who looked a little confused and frightened. But his eyes were also full of wonder as he stared up at Jacob.
“Are you the real Santa?” He finally asked.
Jacob let out a hearty laugh. “No, I am just a helper. But I do know Santa. I bet, if you tell me your name, then make a wish in Santa’s secret wishing well, Santa will do everything in his power to make it come true. The boy’s eyes widened even more, and it brought a smile to Jacob’s face.
“Really? I can make a wish?” Dimples sprouted in the boy’s cheeks, his smile grew.
Jacob longed for the excitement the boy felt.
“I think we can arrange that.” Jacob reached into his pocket and pulled out a shiny penny. He pegged the kid for one who liked cars or trucks. Maybe a bike.
The boy reached for the penny, hesitant. He didn’t look much older than five. Where the hell were his parents? Who in their right mind would allow a child this age to roam around the mall freely, especially when there were so many people out and about. If someone didn’t show up soon, he could have to take him to security and have them find his parents.
Are you ready to make that wish? What’s your name? We want to make sure Santa knows exactly who you are. That way he can get your wish.” Jacob asked, after the boy took the penny and clutched it in his hand.
“ My name is Ben.” He nodded eagerly, closed his eyes and thought for a moment before tossing the penny in. it made a tiny splash before settling at the bottom next to some quarters. He turned to Jacob, a tear running down
What was this? Jacob knelt down to be eye level with him.“Why the tear, bud?”
Ben sniffled. “I just hope my wish comes true. My mommy needs it.” He swiped the tear away, then stuffed his hand in his pants pocket. A puppy dog expression crossed his face.
“ You made a wish for your mommy?” Okay, that’s not what he expected. No expensive toy, not even a computer or Play station game that was popular this year? Jacob closed his eyes for a second. My mommy needs it
Damn. His heart went out to Ben as a picture of Ada’s kids filled his mind. He didn’t have to wonder what their Christmas wish would be. Despite himself, Jacob had to ask. “What does your mommy need?”
The little guy shook his head. “If I tell it won’t come true. Will it?” Tears filled his eyes. “Mister Helper, if I come back and wish again, would that help?”
Jacob didn’t know what to say. He stared at the child, wanting to give him a hug. “Well, I don’t see how another wish could hurt. So, yeah, it might help. Sometimes the hope from wishing is all we have.” Hell, he scratched under his fake beard. He didn’t know if he was trying to console the kid or himself.
The boy’s brows furrowed , his head bobbed up and down. “That’s what I thought. Mommy’s always so tired and my daddy doesn’t love -”
Wonderful excerpt and congratulations on making one of your dreams come true with the release of THE SECRET SANTA WISHING WELL! Before we wave good-bye, let us know if there are any other links you’d like to share so that we can find you and your book online 🙂
Thanks again for having me here! This was a blast! Now, for links, well, here we go: