Saturday, April 23, 2016

Interview with Joyce M. Holmes, Author of Visual Effects

What made you decide to be an author? I can’t remember a time when I didn’t enjoy writing. When I turned forty, I decided to do something just for me, and that something was writing a book. It was a really bad story, but it got me hooked and I’m now on my eighth book.
What do you like best about being a writer? What do you like the least? The best part of writing is developing the characters and digging out the emotion of their stories. Without a doubt, I dislike promoting my work the most. Even after four published books, I’m not comfortable with it. I’m probably the worst salesperson in the world, lol.
How do you think your life experiences have prepared you for writing? For the most part, I’ve lived a relatively simple life, but like everyone, I’ve had some tough times. I try to draw on the emotion of my experiences, even if what I went through isn’t quite the same as what I’m putting my characters through.
Have you ever felt as if you were being dictated to while you wrote a book--as if the words came of their own accord? If yes, which book did that happen with? I wish! The closest I came to that experience was with my first story. It was a joy to write and the words flowed effortlessly. Did I mention it was also a terrible, terrible story? Totally unpublishable, but such fun.
You’ve written seven novels and are working on an eighth novel. What’s your favorite time management tip? Take your writing seriously and make time for it, preferably every day. But, also, don’t put so much pressure on yourself that it becomes more of a chore than a pleasure.
Are you a plotter or a pantser, i.e., do you outline your books ahead of time or are you an “organic” writer? I’m mostly a pantser, but I do need to have some direction before I start writing, usually the beginning, a few vague scenes in the middle and some idea of the ending. I do an outline as I go along, updating it as things change.
If you had one take away piece of advice for authors, what would it be? Learn the craft, then write the best book you can and don’t send it off into the world until it’s ready. (I’ve read too many books that could’ve been wonderful, but they were published while still in the draft stage.)
Did music help you find your muse with this book? If yes, which song did you find yourself going back to over and over again as you wrote? It’s kind of sad to realize I don’t listen to a lot of music anymore. So, no, as much as I still love music, it doesn’t inspire my muse.
Tell me more about Visual Effects.
Drey Winston is a fierce competitor who enjoys challenging her mind and body. But when it comes to her heart—no one ever gets close enough to compete for it. Having grown up believing she was an unwanted burden to her parents, she prefers to keep her feelings well hidden. Just when her hard-fought goals are finally within reach, the audacious Jesse Devlin comes along to breach her carefully guarded defenses.
After a disastrous marriage early in life, Jesse Devlin prefers strings-free relationships. Confident and outgoing, he gets along well with women, but his natural charm can’t seem to penetrate Drey Winston’s aloofness. While attempting to win her over, he’s the one who ends up losing his heart.
Can this commitment-phobic bachelor convince the stubbornly independent woman he loves that his feelings—and hers—are the real deal?
How about an excerpt from Visual Effects?
Jesse leaned against a tree to draw in a few deep breaths. As he straightened, he plucked his ball cap off his head and wiped his forearm across his brow, then hooted a victory cheer. “Hard work’s over. Time for the reward.”
He dropped the cap onto the sand and emptied his pockets into it. Then he pulled his T-shirt over muscled shoulders, dropped it onto the sand on top of his cap, and made quick work of his footwear. Drey stared in disbelief as he beelined down the beach and ran straight into the low surf. When he was hip-deep in the water, he slipped smoothly beneath the surface. He reappeared several feet out and turned to wave.
“Join me,” he called. “The water’s great.”
“Not a chance. The ocean is cold in summer, I can only imagine how frigid it must be today.”
“Wuss,” he scoffed and splashed water in her direction.
Shivers that had nothing to do with feeling chilly shot through Drey as she watched him emerge from the water a few minutes later. Rivulets ran down his chest, following the ridges and planes of his brawny body. Wet shorts clung to muscular thighs.
He ran his hands over his face and then shook himself like a playful pup. “You don’t know what you missed. Nothing like a dip in the salt chuck to get the heart pumping. Well, almost nothing.” He stalked deliberately up the beach toward her, and the look on his face made her back away, but she didn’t react fast enough. He caught her up in his arms, laughing at her shrieks of protest.
“Lemme go, Jesse. You’re cold. Come on, Jesse, lemme go. You’re getting me all wet.”
 “That’s the whole idea. Get you wet and me warm.”
Where can readers find more about your stories, books and you on the Internet?
Buy Links:
Joyce, thank you so much for being with us here today. I know my readers will enjoy your work and your interview.
Thank you for hosting me, Sharon. It was a pleasure.


  1. Thanks,Sharon, for the great interview and for having here me today.