What do you like best about being a writer? What do you like the least? I love everything! But my favorite part has to be character development. I’m a psychology fundi, so I get high on fleshing out the intricacies of what makes my characters tick. I also like editing. I used to do a lot of film editing so book editing is a natural progression for me. What do I like the least? At first, I thought it was the marketing and publicity. It was pretty daunting. But the more I’ve got into it, the more I’ve begun to enjoy it. I’ve met amazing people, and discovered awesome blogs that I didn’t even know existed…like yours!
How do you think your life experiences have prepared you for writing? I studied English at university. My mother owned an advertising agency. And I worked in the TV and video industry. So for most of my life, I’ve been immersed in a world of media and communication. In my mid-thirties, I did a long-distance degree in psychology. I’ve also traveled extensively, for work and for pleasure. This varied exposure ticks a lot of boxes when it comes to creating believable stories. Also, throughout my thirties, my husband and I struggled to have a child. We had numerous IVF treatments, and even tried with a surrogate. After a miscarriage, and many failed attempts, I had to close a door on this painful journey. It changed me in ways I’m still learning about. The stories I write are filled with characters that have suffered. My infertility has given me a glimpse of what it means to be deprived of the one thing you want more than anything else in life. A heartbreaking lesson, but one I believe makes me a better storyteller.
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? Well, this is my debut novel so I don’t have a wealth of experience, but it did happen to me in a roundabout way. I’m a serious plotter and planner. I write detailed outlines, and crazily, fill them with reams of dialogue. Each and every scene is planned before I start the real writing. But a weird thing happened as I progressed: my characters refused to always behave like they were supposed to. Sometimes they would just stop talking before the scene was finished. Or they wouldn’t talk at all. Instead of freaking out, I got a kick out of it. And being such a planner, I made efficient use of Cut & Paste, and plopped the misbehaving piece of dialogue or section of scene, elsewhere. The spooky thing was, the change was always for the better!
You’ve written your debut novel and are working on a second. What’s your favorite time management tip? I don’t have one. I’m a hermit-crab. I work all the time.
If you had one take away piece of advice for authors, what would it be? Oh no, I couldn’t possibly advise another author. I’m still a beginner. I’m in awe of how so many romance authors pump out books at a rate faster than I can down a bottle of red wine. Ask me again in five years time.
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? Not especially. But I do have a favorite song, Beautiful War by Kings of Leon. Heartbreaking. Uplifting. Just beautiful! When my left-brain gets lazy, I often listen to it and it gets me going again.
Tell me more about Luke’s Redemption.
Luke’s Redemption is a Contemporary Romantic Suspense (Steamy). Here’s a taste—
Red-hot sex. Searing betrayal. A passionate and elusive love…
Chased by her criminal kingpin father, Katya Dalca runs to New Orleans and straight into the arms of Luke Hunter. Sucked into the carnal world of the French Quarter, she succumbs to Luke’s potent sexuality. He not only steals her breath, he steals her heart and the only leverage she has against her father. She is left with no choice except to pick up the pieces and rebuild her life alone.
Undercover DEA agent Luke Hunter thought his newest assignment—recover a stolen flash drive to gain the trust of the Russian mob—was like any other. But his target brings him to his knees, and after one taste of her intoxicating beauty, he's in too deep. Doing his job means walking away, leaving his heart behind with nothing but a promise to reunite. It's a promise he can't keep.
When Katya's past reaches out and her world unravels, her only hope is the one man she is most vulnerable to—Luke.
How about an excerpt from Luke’s Redemption?
The smell of beignets wafted up and distracted, I lifted the bag and took a deep breath. Whoosh! Fine sugar blew up out of the bag and coated me.
“Shit, honey, you look sweet all over.”Where can readers find more about your stories, books and you on the Internet?You can read book excerpts and learn more about me on my website, and join Anni’s Posse to get regular updates and Bonus Treats www.annifife.com
Oh, just great.
Blinking sugar out of my eyes I looked up. And up. He was tall, well over six foot. Midnight-blue eyes rimmed by a deeper blue-black smoldered lazily down at me. “You’re holding the best beignets in the world. You gonna stand there or you going to take a bite?”
“Umm.” Jeez, Katya. Say something.
“Here, let me hold that for you.” He took the coffee from my hand. “Go on, babe. Take a bite. It’ll be the best thing you’ll ever taste.”
Still struck dumb, I did what he asked and lifted a beignet out of the bag and took a big bite. Oh! It was like sinking my teeth into a sweet pillow of ambrosia.
I nodded and stared back at him. Then, without uttering a word, I stuffed the rest of the beignet into my mouth. He grinned at me, shaking his head. “Want to wash it down with this?” He held out my coffee.
My fingers brushed against his. Yikes! I couldn’t stop the slight tremor caused by his touch. I took a gulp of coffee - half rich chicory, half hot milk - and finally found my voice. “Would you like one?” I offered the bag of beignets to him.
“Would be like taking candy from a baby,” he grinned. “But don’t worry, I’ve got my own.” He dangled a packet like mine in front of me.
Then we both stood there and smiled at each other while we gorged on sugary donuts. He would reach for my coffee to free my hand. Then after I ate some fluffy yumminess, he’d hand it back to me so I could take a sip. We swallowed the last of our beignets and licked our fingers.
I didn’t even know his name, yet I was more turned on than I had ever been in my life.
My Amazon Author Page is https://www.amazon.com/author/annifife
Luke’s Redemption is also available from Kobe, Bookstrand, All Romance, iTunes and The Wild Rose Press. All these Buy Links are available on Anni’s website: http://annifife.com/
Barnes & Noble: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/lukes-redemption-anni-fife/1124824689?ean=2940156958900
Anni, thank you so much for being with us here today. I know my readers will enjoy your work and your interview.