Thursday, July 12, 2012

Author, author... #Giveaway all about it !!!

Howdy everyone, today we have

Suzanne Barrett

and she has a special treat for everyone at the end of the post so make sure you read completely through!!!

Hi Suzanne, so glad to have you back with us !!  Can you tell us a little about yourself?
I was born in Southern California but traveled a lot. My dad was an electrical and microwave engineer so we moved frequently. I’ve lived in Oregon, Wisconsin, Illinois, Missouri, Louisiana and Mississippi. Finished high school in the San Francisco Bay Area and went to college here. Hobbies from a young age included reading and rock collecting.

What did you want to be when you were growing up or did you always want to be a writer?
At one time I thought I wanted to be a veterinarian, at another time a translator with (then) Radio free Europe). However, I always loved to write and was forever creating stories and corresponding with pen pals.

When did you first start writing?
The real romance writing bug hit later in life, especially after I’d read LaVyrle Spencer’s Hummingbird and decided that I’d like to try writing a romance novel. I knew I could write and my command of English was good, but boy did I soon discover how much I didn’t know about word choices, pacing, plot, character development and just about everything else! I finished six novels and had as many partials begun when I finally got “the call.” I was an overnight success after only nine years. (Some wise person said you have to write your half million words before you have a clue about how to write; I’m living proof.)

What is a typical writing day like for you?
My writing day is atypical because I’m a jewelry designer and a gardener as well as a writer, so I do whatever moves me or what the weather dictates. I strive to put in at least three hours of writing, editing or writing-related tasks.

Do you have a specific routine you follow or specific items you need with you when you write?
I used to think those things would help, but for me they don’t. I prefer to work in a clutter-free environment without a lot of chores facing me, but when creativity strikes, I can work pretty much anywhere. I admit to being a morning person, so I’m usually sitting at my computer by five o’clock in the morning.

What is your favorite part of writing?  Is there anything you don’t like about being a writer?
I love to develop my characters and have them react to situations as I wish I’d react.

What is your favorite length of book to write?  (Short story, novella, full length novel) Why?
I usually strive for 70,000 words.

How does your family feel about your writing and you being an author?
My family is very supportive. My son and his wife read all my books.

Is there a to-be-read waiting on your bedside table?
Huge! I read romantic suspense, biographies, gardening journals and much, much more. I usually have at least three books on the go: paperback, hardcover and Kindle.

For fun, I have a few personal questions, 
Favorite 5
1) Favorite Holiday – Thanksgiving – it’s a wonderful family gathering we all look forward to.
2)         Favorite Drink – Great coffee first thing in the morning, then Earl Grey tea
3)         Favorite Author – There are so many. Brenda Novak is high on my list. Robyn Carr.
4)         Favorite Book – A Fair Stream of Silver (out of print Celtic fairy tales from the Hebrides)
5)         Favorite Animal – Cat. I love cats!
And for a bonus:  What is a typical mood for you?  And is your mood different when you’re writing?
Upbeat, balanced, focused. I strive for a stress-free life both in writing and real life

Where can our readers find you?? 

Is there an upcoming or current release you would like to share with us today and where can we find it?
Just out this month is my long contemporary Loving Luke, set in Northern California. It’s available on Amazon (available in digital; print coming soon), at Barnes & Noble and in the Turquoise Morning Press bookstore.

Jo McGuigan’s job is on the line. She needs a photographer to teach her rehab class, but the only one available is an angry recluse who wants nothing to do with the hospital or its outreach program.

Luke Falconer’s photo career ends in a fiery auto crash that leaves him badly burned and crippled. Hating the world, he retreats to his cabin. But when an encounter with the intriguing social worker ends in a night of passion, their lives are changed forever. Jo is a spark to Luke’s flame, and where there’s smoke, there is often a raging inferno.

Luke Falconer propelled his six-foot-two frame through Muir Woods Burn Center’s automatic doors and limped past the reception desk toward the elevators. Pain seared his right leg like a hot knife.
Climb mountains again? Hell, he could barely walk. Crawling out of a tiny North Face tent and strapping on a sixty-five pound pack would be impossible. His photography career was finished.
He clenched his good hand into a fist. Once he’d been a man who could face a challenge and prevail, who had a purpose in life. Now he was a cripple.
“Another two or three surgeries and you’ll be able to move more normally. We’ll tidy that face up too,” Dr. Anderson had said at his last visit. He wondered what lie the balding Brit would tell him this time. The last two skin grafts hadn't taken, and the scarring was as angry as ever.
He winced at the pain stabbing his groin, still raw from the last skin graft. Luke came to a stop and leaned against the hallway wall. He squeezed his eyes shut. Nothing would ever be easy again.
He shouldn’t have come back to the hospital. All the surgeries in the world wouldn’t get his life back. If he wanted to work, he’d have to figure out how to get his scarred legs up a mountain.
Face facts, Falconer. You’re washed up.
Even fixing his face wouldn’t change anything. If he wanted a woman, one he could look at without scaring the bejesus out of her, he’d have to buy one.

           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 but it's totally up to you.

Beef Daube Proven├žal
2 tsp olive oil
12 garlic cloves, crushed
1 (2-pound) boneless chuck roast, trimmed and cut into 1-inch cubes
1 ½ tsp salt, divided
½ tsp freshly ground black pepper, divided
1 cup red wine
2 cups chopped carrot
1 ½ cups chopped onion
½ cup beef broth (can use Better Than Bouillon)
1 Tbsp tomato paste (I use catsup so no leftover paste to fuss with)
1 tsp chopped fresh rosemary (or 1/4 tsp dried)
1 tsp chopped fresh thyme (or 1/4 tsp dried)
Dash of ground cloves
1 (14.5 oz.) can diced tomatoes, undrained
1 bay leaf
Preheat oven to 300 degrees
Heat olive oil in a small Dutch oven over low heat. Add garlic to pan; cook for five min. or until garlic is fragrant, stirring occasionally. Remove garlic with a slotted spoon and set aside. Increase heat to medium-high. Add beef to pan. Sprinkle beef with ½ tsp salt and 1/4 tsp pepper. Cook five min., browning on all sides. Remove beef from pan. Add wine to pan, and bring to boil, scraping pan to loosen browned bits. Add garlic, beef, remaining 1 tsp salt, remaining 1/4 tsp pepper, carrot, and next 8 ingredients to pan. Bring to boil.

Cover and bake at 300 degrees for 2 1/;2 hours or until beef is tender. Discard bay leaf. Serve over noodles, polenta or garlic mashed potatoes.

Now that sounds like a great recipe !!!  Thanks

for sharing that and on to the book :)

Loving Luke is definitely on my to-read list!!!

And thanks to Suzanne,

one lucky

 commenter will

 get a digital copy of

Loving Luke !!!

So make sure you leave

 a comment and

tomorrow Suzanne will

randomly pick a


Good luck on winning this great read!

Thanks to our readers for stopping by today ...

Happy reading !



  1. Great interview Suzanne! Loving Luke sounds great.

  2. So cool getting to know you, Suzanne! Yikes on the 5 am wake-up call. I don't think my brain could function properly at that hour, with or without coffee. Loving Luke sound like a fantastic book! :)

  3. Suzanne I enjoyed the interview, look forward to reading some of your work. Telma Cortez x

  4. Great interview, Ladies. Suzanne, I think we have similar tastes when it comes to our reading enjoyment. Loved LaVyrle Spencer and look forward to reading almost anything from Robin Carr.

    Loving Luke sounded so good, I already downloaded it, so don't enter me to win.

    1. I got hooked on a Virgin River book I got on NetGalley. Liked it so much I bought the rest and read them in order. I still have all LaVyrle's books.

      Hmmm, we may be reading each other's book at the same time.

  5. Suzanne, I hear great things about Loving Luke!

    1. Um, would that be from "our" super editor?

  6. Nice to know more about you, Suzanne. I'm sure you already know how much I'm looking forward to reading your latest *acting like a super fan girl*. Congrats on the new release.

  7. Great interveiw Suzanne.. I love the receipe you gave... I so want to read your book... Sounds great... Wishing you best of luck and many sales for this book..

  8. Loving Luke sounds awesome. Reading the excerpt left me hungering for the rest of Luke' story because the writing is so visual. I could see the scene so easily. Can't wait to read it.

    1. Kathy B. Could you please contact me regarding the contest for a digital copy of Loving Luke. Email is

      Thank you !

  9. Thank you everyone. Taryn, Jan, Madison, Christina, Telma, Evelyn. I loved doing the blog and love the support of all of you. I hope Loving Luke lives up to its reputation. This story placed and won in a lot of RWA contests. Glad TMP took a chance on it.

    Krista: the Boeuf en Daube recipe is a winner. It really helps to buy a roast and cut it into pieces--avoids the usual fat and gristle that comes with ordinary stew meat. My son loves this so much he makes it for his family. Try it with wide, flat noodles or garlic mashed potatoes.

  10. Great interview. Loving Luke sounds like a great read. I love this kind of book.

  11. Being a NorCal person myself, I love reading your books set in this part of the country. Loving Luke is on my TBR list. Thanks for the recipe!

    1. Suzanne, you are most welcome. I love to cook...really good food. I'm always looking for tasty new recipes but I have hundreds of time-honored favorites, too.

  12. Great interview. The book sounds wonderful! Can't wait to check it out. :)

  13. Congrats on your new release, Suzanne! Loving Luke is on my TBR list!

  14. Thank you Kathleen, Jennifer and Kathy. Great comments everyone. Okay, I'm off to pick a winner (random, of course).

  15. I decided to choose two winners...and they are...

    Kathy B. and Madison (random drawing with all names in a hat. Honest!)

  16. Forgot to say: Kathy B. and Madison, please email me to let me know which format you prefer.

  17. Yay! Congrats to both our winners!