What made you decide to be an author? I’ve always loved reading. By the time I was ten, I’d read the entire Nancy Drew Mystery series, and I’ve never looked back. I read voraciously in all genres, but romantic suspense is my sweet spot. Writing is another enjoyment. After I lost my voice for a year due to an operation, I decided to combine my two loves and write a book. The words bubbling inside me had to be spoken, even if through my characters’ voices. Little did I know the challenges of writing a book, but it’s what I do and who I am.
What do you like best about being a writer? What do you like the least? I love creating new worlds and peopling them with interesting characters and then upping the stakes and watching them scramble to reach their goals. There’s a letdown once a book is finished, and a sense of loss as you say goodbye to the characters who have become friends. Like many authors, I’m uncomfortable with the business end of book promotion, but realize it’s an important part of this business.
How do you think your life experiences have prepared you for writing? I’ve always lived in small towns, and I’m intrigued by the dynamics of rural living. As a result, my books are set in communities where your neighbors, and the guy who works at the grocery store, or the gal at the post office, know you and you know them. I was a teacher for many years and taught high school English and college courses, so basic grammar and punctuation aren’t usually a challenge.
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? There are always bits and pieces of myself in my characters…it’s hard to avoid. In ‘My Brother’s Sins’, the heroine, Hallie’s character, took on a life of her own as if she were determined to tell her side of the story. When I was writing ‘My Brother’s Sins’, hours would pass as her words flowed onto the page.
You’ve written two novels and are working on a third novel. What’s your favorite time management tip? I’m new at this game. ‘My Brother’s Sins’ was released February 24, and I’ve just signed the contract with my publisher for ‘Cherished Secrets’, another romantic suspense novel. My time management tip: write every single day…even if you only have time to jot down a few words. Make time for your writing. Make it important. Figure out the best time of day for you…when the ideas flow more easily, the house is quiet, the dog has been walked, whatever…then plant your butt in the chair in front of your computer and write.
Are you a plotter or a pantser, i.e., do you outline your books ahead of time or are you an organic writer? Definitely a panster. That’s part of the fun. I start with the germ of an idea and a first sentence and go from there. Some days writing is a wild, rollercoaster ride with ideas coming hot and heavy; other days, it’s like wading in mud. I love not knowing what’s going to happen next and letting my characters write their own stories. Of course, that means there’s lots of revising when I’m finished.
If you had one take away piece of advice for authors, what would it be? Write…wherever, whenever, as often as possible. Just write. The next time you look up from your computer, you may have a complete story in front of you.
Tell me more about My Brother’s Sins.
Ryan Marshall’s kid brother had always been trouble. Now, his brother wants Ryan, ex-DEA agent, to protect the woman he loves from a notorious, Mexican drug cartel.
The second Ryan lays eyes on Hallie Harkins, he knows he’s made a mistake. Hallie’s blonde beauty and stubborn grit tempt him like no woman ever has. It’s all he can do to keep his hands off her…and his heart intact.
Hallie’s worst fears are realized when the man she expects to meet, vanishes. In his place, a disturbingly attractive stranger appears, claiming he’s been sent to protect her. Can she trust him? Or is he working with her pursuers?
Following an attempt on Hallie’s life, she and Ryan join forces, embarking on a perilous mission of danger and desire taking them from rural Montana to the sunny shores of Acapulco Bay, and into the clutches of a ruthless killer.
Will they survive the mission together and find love in each other’s arms?
How about an excerpt from My Brother’s Sins?
Ryan had made a mistake. He shouldn’t have hauled her out of the bar. No wonder she was afraid of him. What woman wouldn’t be after his caveman tactics? But then he recalled his brother’s troubled voice, and his guilt fled. This misunderstanding was her fault. She’d refused to talk inside the bar, leaving him no other choice.The uncertain light cast by the flickering neon sign revealed her long, slim legs covered by tight, white, denim pants, which cupped her hips. The soft mounds of her breasts swelled against the fabric of her blue, silk blouse.Sweat beaded his brow, and he forced his gaze back to her face.Her full, red lips parted, and the tip of a pink tongue peeked out as she licked her lips.He gulped.“What aren’t you telling me?” she asked. “Is Geordie okay?”Her frantic voice broke through the haze surrounding him. He took a quick breath. “You want to know about Geordie?”She nodded.“Well, then, come on.” He turned on his heel and started walking across the parking lot, not looking to see if she followed, half hoping she wouldn’t. He couldn’t think with her perfume, something spicy, hinting at sensual delights, wafting on the night air. At least, he couldn’t think with his brain. Other body parts were more than willing to do the thinking for him.“Where are you going?” she called after him.He fished in his pocket for his keys and opened the door of his red, four-wheel drive truck. Casting a glance over his shoulder, he wasn’t surprised she was still standing where he’d left her. He’d figured she was too smart to drive off with a man she didn’t know. He risked another peek.She stood alone, illuminated by the faint light of the distant street lamp, looking frightened and vulnerable.He rubbed a hand over his face, the stubble rasping in the night air. Sighing, he spoke, knowing he was making a mistake even as the words left his lips. “I thought you cared about Geordie. You said you wanted to know if he’s alive.”
Where can readers find more about your stories, books and you on the Internet?
I’m on the Amazon author page at: www.amazon.com/author/cbclark
The Wild Rose Press:
C.B. Clark, thank you so much for being with us here today. I know my readers will enjoy your work and your interview.