Thanks for joining us and please welcome a wonderful author and a great new friend,
Hi Denise, great to have you here, could you tell us a little about yourself...
I’m a Southern girl. I’ve lived in Louisiana all my life. And yes, I have a drawl. Writing is my passion. I tell people accounting is a skill I learned to earn some money to support my writing habit. I’ve been writing off and on since I was seventeen. That’s more than a few years ago. I have a wonderful husband and two incredible children. They not only endure my writing moods, but also encourage me to indulge my passion.
What or who initially inspired you to become a writer?
Harlequin romances. My friend Brenda and I devoured probably hundreds of them in high school. I wrote my first “novel” when I was seventeen. Seventeen pages on school ruled paper and an obvious rip-off of the last Harlequin I read. I love reading. A lot of my inspiration comes from other writers.
Probably my biggest inspiration comes from my daydreaming. I have an incredible imagination. It made me feel guilty to spend so much time thinking about what it would be like to live in other places and be in other situations and know other people. Then one day I got the brilliant idea to write all those scenarios.
What kind of research do you do for a novel and how extensive do you get?
I like to set my stories in interesting places. So the amount of research I do depends on the location. If I’ve been to the locale, it’s easier to use my impressions of the scene. Otherwise, I have to do a lot of googling. I’ve probably purchased twenty guidebooks on different vacation destinations trying to add local flavor to a story.
If there is some aspect of the story I’m not familiar with, I will do the research necessary to give the plot detail some authenticity. I’ve researched heart transplants, drug interactions, police procedure, hurricanes, architects…Just about anything that might give the story an added bit of reality.
Do you have a special place you like to do your writing? Such as an office, a spare room, the dining room table, your couch?
I sit on my bed with my MAC. I have a cup of coffee on the nightstand and a comfy pillow behind my back. Sometimes the lights are out because it’s late at night. I think I do my best work after nine at night.
As a reader, what types of works do you like to read and do you think they influence the genre/genres you write in?
I’ve read so many books in my life I couldn’t count them. My Goodreads profile doesn’t even begin to mention a fraction of them. I love a good suspense novel. I love a good romance. Those novels that mix the two in a nice, satisfying balance are my favorites. I also like to read in a variety of other genres, particularly novels that explore family dynamics or character psychology. I like to know what makes a character tick. I think reading a range of different styles and genres adds to my knowledge of the craft of writing.
What is your favorite method of writing...as in laptop, desktop, Ipad or the old fashioned pencil and paper?? And do you plot out your story or go with the flow of your muse?
My family thinks my MAC is permanently attached to my hands. I never completely plot or outline my stories before I write them. I have a spiral bound notebook where I sometimes flesh out the main characters or rough out a timeline of events if things get a little inconsistent or tangled. Usually, I know how the story begins and how I want it to end, and I let my muse take my imagination from point to point.
When you need a break or some time off from the trials of being a writer, what can you be found doing?
I like spending time with my family. My daughter and I are shopaholics. I have a few television shows I’m obsessed with. Grey’s Anatomy. Castle. And…I confess, America’s Next Top Model. When I’m not doing those things or working at my other, less satisfying job (accounting), I’m reading.
Is there anything about yourself nobody knows that you would like to share with our readers??
I have a severe crush on Nathan Fillion.
Where can our readers find you??
Please visit my blog at www.denisemoncrief.blogspot.com.
Is there an upcoming or current release you would like to share with us today and where can we find it?
Snow White and the Seven Dogs is scheduled to appear in April in the Unleashed Hearts anthology published by Still Moments Publishing. It will be available at www.stillmomentspublishing.com and at www.smashwords.com.
Having a daughter, I guess I’ve seen every Disney princess movie ever made. I’m not sure when or how I thought of naming my heroine Snow White, but once I did, the rest of the story just kind of wrote itself. I love tales with a sense of humor, so this story was a lot of fun to write. I write suspense, so I couldn’t resist writing a modern version of Snow White with its wicked Queen (or corporate CEO, in this case). Instead of dwarves, seven pooches named after Disney dogs become her best friends.
Snow flees not only from a criminal investigation for fraud but also from the wrath of her conniving future mother-in-law. Ann Winters is more than willing to let Snow take the fall for her crimes if it will drive a wedge between Snow and her son Anson. With nowhere else to go, Snow escapes to the White’s family apple orchard near Yakima, Washington. Her hideout turns into a not-so-safe haven when the secrets from her family’s past prove to be just as large as her problems back in Seattle. She cringes every time she introduces herself to someone new, but when she meets handsome Eric Prince, he doesn’t react to her Disneyesque name. He acts as if he knows more about her family's past than she does. Enter seven recalcitrant pooches. Snow isn’t a dog person, but Eric seems to know every one of them, and they know him. Eric and the dogs are determined to protect Snow from the danger swirling around her.
Sounds like a great read, i can't wait! Now before we let you go do you have a favorite recipe you'd like to share? I like to cook and am always looking for new recipes to try and share.
Slap Ya Papa Chili
This was my Daddy’s specialty. Like so many other of his recipes, he started his chili with a roux.
1 med. yellow onion, chopped somewhere between fine and coarse
2 lbs lean ground meat
2 cans chili beans
2 cans chili tomatoes
2 Tbsp tomato catsup
Chili powder to taste
Prepare the roux by browning ½ C flour in a ½ cooking oil. Salt and pepper to taste. Cook on med heat, stirring almost constantly so it won’t stick for 15 to 30 mins until the roux is the color of coffee with light cream.
Brown the ground meat and onion together. Add together the roux and the meat in a stockpot. Add the chili beans, chili tomatoes, and catsup. Add chili powder. Taste. Add more chili powder. Taste. Add more chili powder. Eventually there will be enough chili powder added that it tastes right.
Daddy loved to extol the virtues of eating onions. He claimed they prevented heart disease, stroke, and cancer. About two and a half years ago, he passed away from an aortic aneurysm at the ripe old age of eight-nine, three months shy of his ninetieth birthday. Daddy said most of the world’s best recipes started with a roux. He always added a little sweet catsup to anything with tomatoes, because he said it cut the acid.
Denise I'm so sorry to hear about your Daddy, he sounded like a wonderful and wise man, and a great cook!! Thank you so much for being here with us today, it was great learning more about you and I hope you'll come back and visit us soon !!
Readers, thanks for stopping by today and don't forget to get your copy of Snow White and the Seven Dogs when available, at www.stillmomentspublishing.com and www.smashwords.com.
Happy reading !!