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The Next Big Thing — for Valley Brown

November 27, 2012
Romance Rides on Two Wheels

The Next Big Thing

You may be familiar with this meme, but in case you’re not, it’s a contagious networking of fellow authors, helping each other to find new audiences for their work, and hopefully meet a lot of kindred spirits in the process. We’ve each agreed to be “interviewed” and to provide the next jumping-off point for followers and readers to discover “The Next Big Thing” for still more authors!  It’s been an eye-opener for me, making me think about some stuff I really hadn’t , so I hope you enjoy finding out more about what I’ve been doing between blog posts.  Author Liz Flaherty over at Word Wranglers ( tagged me for The Next Big Thing! It’s my turn to spill the beans, so here are my answers to the Interview:

NBT:  What is the working title of your next book?

VB:  “Rough Piece of Road” – it’s the second book in my romantic suspense series “The Rocky Road.” It’s currently in edits, and we’re hoping for a release date of June 1, 2013.

NBT:  Where did the idea come from for this book?

VB:  You know, this is one of those answers that ought to be easy, but isn’t.  RPOR picks up a bit from the first book, “Speeding Tickets,” which is where my main characters meet and decide they can’t live without each other, but Christine finds herself caught up in a dangerous scheme by someone she thought she could trust.  In RPOR, Chris thinks she is finally safe, but instead discovers that her ordeal has actually only begun, and that Doug is in as much danger as she is.

NBT:  What genre does your book fall under?

VB:  “The Rocky Road” books are all contemporary romantic suspense.  I try to keep things a bit on the lighter side so the romance has just enough heat to stir the imagination, the suspense isn’t going to turn overly graphic, and the characters can cut up with each other like real people do.

NBT:  Which actors would you choose to play your characters in a movie rendition?

VB:  This is a tough one.  Maybe Rachel McAdams or Meg Ryan for Chris.  Doug, well, that’s really hard, because the guy needs to have a pretty deep voice, and let’s face it, the average guy doesn’t have one.  Of course, Hugh Jackman or Josh Brolin might come close.

NBT:  What is the one-sentence synopsis of your book?

VB:  Newlywed Chris Hartford has to figure out where millions of dollars in missing Mob money have gone — and how to keep a scheming co-ed away from her husband — before her new life turns into a dead end.

NBT:  Will your book be self-published or represented by an agency?

VB:  RPOR will be published through Broken Glass Publishing, but currently has no representation.  We’re hoping to connect with an agent soon to work on film and foreign rights.

NBT:  How long did it take you to write the first draft of our manuscript?

VB:  Again, a tricky question. RPOR grew automatically out of the first book, but then it underwent a major plot revision.  All in all, it probably took about a year to become its own entity, given that I was not in a position to work on it fulltime.

NBT:  What other books would you compare this story to within your genre?

VB:  I try to read a wide variety of genres, so I don’t become unduly influenced by any one writer, but I think you would find a lot of similarities with Nora Roberts or even Janet Evanovich.

NBT:  Who or What inspired you to write this book?

VB:  The whole series sprang out of a simple writing exercise, believe it or not! I hadn’t planned on doing a novel, much less a romance series, but something really clicked and took off, so here I am!  Beyond that, I had an acquaintance, Helene Weiss, who wrote and published her first historical fiction novel at a rather advanced age.  Her determination and enthusiasm made a huge impression on me.

NBT:  What else about your book might pique the reader’s interest?

VB:  There are a number of things going on with my characters.  Chris, the heroine, has an art background and experiments with making art quilts, plus she rides a motorcycle.  Doug, her new hubby, is a long-time biker and bike mechanic, but also is a promising metal sculptor. Something they share, and struggle with constantly, is Post-Traumatic-Stress-Disorder, or PTSD. Chris, as readers learn in “Speeding Tickets,” was brutalized by her sadistic high school beau, which left a lot of emotional scars, and later on witnessed a double murder that almost took her life. Doug was part of a covert military operation in Viet Nam that had horrendous consequences, and his return to the States was overshadowed by betrayal and death of people he loved. There are a lot of emotional skeletons in their respective closets, and there are threads of intrigue and danger that tie them together in unexpected ways.

So there you have the 4-1-1 on my latest book.  Now I’m sending you on to another author-link in the chain on The Next Big Thing:

Virgie – author of “Chimera 1911 C. E.”

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