Please help me welcome friend and author Diane Burton to the blog. Diane has agreed to take the hot seat and answer a few questions. If you don’t already know Diane, I think you’ll enjoy getting to know a little more about her, and of course her latest release The Protector.
Don’t forget to check out her blurb and excerpt, and then enter her awesome giveaway at the end of the post!
Let’s get started…
Describe yourself as if you were tweeting…that’s right. You get 140 characters! 🙂
Action/adventure romance author. 1 spouse, 2 kids, 3 gr’kids. Quilter, gardener, reader, movie watcher. Detroit Tigers & Star Wars fan.
Nicely done! What’s the first thing we’d see when we walked in your front door?
What is your favorite meal to cook?
Mostaccioli or as my grandkids call it “fat spaghetti” from my grandmother’s recipe.
Pasta is always a favorite. When did you know you wanted to be a writer?
In high school, but a teacher discouraged me. A long time later, with empty nest approaching, I decided I would write a romance novel, sell a zillion copies, and be as famous as Nora Roberts. LOL Life doesn’t work like that.
It’s rewarding none the less though 🙂 I love choosing names for my characters. How did you go about choosing yours?
For my science fiction romances, it’s sound—how the combination of consonants and vowels appeal to me. I want them to be different from American names yet pronounceable. For romantic suspense, I decide on the character’s heritage and the part of the country they are from.
What makes THE PROTECTOR different from other books in the same genre?
I tackle issues that are just as common in the future as they are today, like human trafficking.
Which character is most like you?
Bits and pieces of me are in all the characters I write. Rissa’s lack of confidence in Dillan’s love; Dillan’s rebellion against his father’s plan for his career; Arjay’s inadvertent humor.
Do you prefer to write in the morning, afternoon, evening, or just whenever you can?
Definitely in the morning when I’m freshest.
That’s how I roll, too. lol What’s the first sentence in your book?
After cutting the heel off a loaf of jambor, Rissa Dix sat on a stool at her work island, closed her eyes, and inhaled the scent of freshly-baked bread.
What was your favorite scene in THE PROTECTOR to write and why?
When Dillan takes Rissa up into the rainforest canopy. The scene shows her having fun, something she rarely does.
Why should we read THE PROTECTOR?
If you like adventure along with romance, second chances and healing, you’ll find it in THE PROTECTOR.
Sounds great 🙂 What is one of your fondest memories from when you were growing up?
Lying on a quilt in a shady spot outside and reading Nancy Drew mysteries.
Growing up my sister and 2 neighbor girls would read romances while we soaked up the sun on a trampoline. Fond memories 🙂 What is the best part of the writing process for you…the beginning of the book, the middle, or the end…and why?
The beginning. It’s a new adventure, full of promise. I know basically where the story will go but not how. There are always surprises.
Would you give us a sneak peek into what you’re working on now?
I’m working on the second book in my cozy mystery series called The Case of the Fabulous Fiancé. It features a female detective in a fictitious resort town on Lake Michigan. It should be available in October. Then I’m finishing a Christmas novella that started as a short story about the voyage of a small team of astronauts to a “Goldilocks” planet. Christmas in Space will be released in November.
After tavern owner Rissa Dix rescues two girls from a slave ship, she must rally the townsfolk to prevent traffickers from raiding the frontier colony. She’s met with apathy and disbelief. Because she lost her own baby to traffickers, she’s determined that no other mother will suffer the same heartache.
Industrialist heir Dillan Rusteran aids her in rescuing more children. Little do they know they’re about to tangle with a trafficking ring that puts Rissa in danger. Dillan’s loved her for years despite her claim she’s too old for him. As they fight the traffickers, will she finally see him in a new light?
Dillan woke up to a steady thump-thump-thump. Damn, the sublight engine was acting up again. He rolled over and almost fell out of bed.
Two things hit him at the same time. He wasn’t in the wide, comfortable bed in his quarters aboard ship and the thumping wasn’t his sublight. Thank the stars for that. Still, it had been acting a little wonky lately. He’d have to check it out.
After dressing and taking care of his needs in the small san-fac near the stairs, he ambled down carrying his boots in the event the big Zebori was still asleep. Although how anyone could sleep through all that thumping he had no idea. He followed the noise into the kitchen.
Rissa stood at the island kneading dough. Last night he remembered how much higher than normal the island was. She’d built it to accommodate her height. For a moment, he just watched her as she concentrated on the dough. Several lumps of grayish-brown dough sat on the flour-covered table waiting their turn. Even though he was a few meters away, the yeasty scent hit his nose and brought back memories of the times he’d been there before. And how much he enjoyed her company. Despite her treating him like a kid.
The dark haired teen—Pela?—worked alongside Rissa. She noticed him first. Panic crossed her strong features before she murmured to Rissa.
“Good morning, sleepyhead.” She laughed as she turned the dough she’d been punishing into a long, loaf pan. She picked up another lump and went to work on it.
Dillan yawned. “What time is it?”
“Almost Mid-Day.” When she looked up, she did a double take. “Your beard is gone.”
“It itched. When I find the barber, I’ll get my hair cut, too.” He ran his fingers across the top of his head. “It’s Mid-Day? Damn. I wanted to get an early start.”
Without stopping her kneading, she asked, “Early start on what?”
“Going into the mountains.”
“Did you come here to go climbing again?”
Grief hit Dillan the way it had for the past six years any time someone mentioned his former favorite sport. He hadn’t climbed since his best friend died in a freak rock slide. Or so he thought until a year ago.
Rissa’s dark eyes reflected guilt. She stopped working the dough. “I’m sorry, Dillan. I forgot.”
“Apparently, so did Konner.” He didn’t conceal the hurt he’d felt when he learned Konner was not only alive but had a family. “Turns out I was wrong about some things. I’ll, uh, leave you to your work.”
With her forearm, she wiped the sweat off her brow then went back to kneading. “Pela, you did fine. Turn that one into the next pan then get Dillan a cup of sheelonga tea.”
Pela eyed him with uncertainty.
“I can get it.” He sure didn’t want to upset the girl. “Mugs still next to the sink?”
Rissa looked surprised that he remembered. He remembered everything about her. She’d stayed in his mind after every trip from the time he was sixteen. Konner had teased him about being infatuated. Dillan knew it was more than infatuation. Especially after that last visit.
I grew up in the Detroit-area and have lived in Portage (MI), Sedalia (MO) as well as a brief stint in Chicago-land. I’ve been a Parks & Recreation supervisor, an inventory clerk for a flute store, and a long-time volunteer for Girl Scouts. My last job was for an oil and gas exploration company where I discovered the cure for insomnia—reading oil and gas leases. My longest-running gig was as a teacher where I taught elementary kids for over 10 years. I am a member of Romance Writers of America and the Mid-Michigan and Fantasy, Futuristic & Paranormal chapters of RWA. I met my own hero on a blind date. It was love at first sight–for me. It took him a little longer. We currently reside in West Michigan and have two grown children and three delightful grandchildren.
I’ve been a reader all my life, and I love movies, especially action adventure, mysteries, science fiction, and romantic comedy. Castle, Firefly, and NCIS are my favorite TV shows. So is it any wonder that I write science fiction romance and romantic suspense, both with comedic elements?
$15 Amazon or Barnes and Noble Gift Card