Today we have a new-to-us author,
Welcome Lee Ann, so great to have you here with us. Can you tell us a little about yourself?
I’m a writer, wife, and mother. I’ve made up stories all my life and starting putting them to paper at an early age. I earned two college degrees and worked for a decade in radio. I’ve also held jobs in education, retail, and health care. When I’m not writing, I love to read, enjoy the outdoors, and travel. I’m the product of an urban blue collar neighborhood although I now live in a small town in the Missouri Ozarks where I’m both admired as an author and reviled for writing “dirty books”
Do real life events find their way into your stories?
Absolutely although I often change the situations or some of the factors – and sometimes I just make up things.
Do you ever mimic family members or people you know when you choose characters?
Well, I have family members who swear they can identify who a character was based upon but most of the time, I don’t although I will use someone’s personality, their quirks, or even their appearance to give added depth to a character.
Do you find yourself going back to the same inspiration for each story or is it always something different?
My novels are all romance so there’s always the love factor but I find I often write about second chance at love stories.
When do you write? Early morning? During the day sometime or all day? After the kids go to bed?
I write any time, all the time. I get up early and take care of details like email, blogs, etc. After my kids head off to school, I spend the morning writing and often into the afternoon. There are days when I have to stop to make dinner, spend time with the family and there are times when I’m still on the laptop after everyone else goes to bed.
How do you feel about marketing your book?
I see it as a necessary evil. I’m glad I have a background in broadcast media because it helps but there’s such a fine line between marketing and promotion and overkill. I try to toe the line.
What social sites do you feel work best for marketing?
Facebook keeps me in touch with family, friends, colleagues and readers from around the world so it ranks high on my list and I’ve found Twitter to be pretty effective too. I’m just beginning to see the results from Pin Interest and LinkedIn too.
Do you like to pitch stories to your publisher or do you wait until you have written the story and have a final manuscript to turn in?
In the earliest days of my author career, I sent the final MS. These days, I do both – there are times when I send a completed manuscript and other times when I pitch the story to my editor.
Is there any other genre that you would love to try writing? If so, what is it?
I’ve written some short fiction, had it published in both the literary and speculative areas. I’d love to write a speculative, even horror novel and probably will one of these days.
Do you always/ever see yourself as the heroine/hero when you write a story?
Yes and no. It reminds me of playing with Barbie dolls when I was a little girl – I’m acting as the character but then I’m also outside, pulling the strings so to speak.
Just for fun, I have a few personal questions,
1) Favorite Male Actor - Rudolph Valentino!
2) Favorite vehicle – 1959 Cadillac Sedan De Ville
3) Favorite way to relax – with a glass of wine out on the deck under the stars
4) Favorite ice cream – Pralines and Cream
5) Favorite outfit - Comfortable blue jeans, t-shirt, boots or barefeet
And for a bonus: If you could pick any place in the world to live, besides where you are now, where would it be? (Of course, without the hindrance of jobs or money needed)
I’d love to move to Los Angeles. It’s such a trippy city with so much personality and eccentric appeal.
Where can our readers find you??
Facebook: my personal page is Lee Ann Sontheimer Murphy plus I just kicked off an author page – From Sweet to Heat: The Romance of Lee Ann Sontheimer Murphy
Amazon author page: http://www.amazon.com/Lee-Ann-Sontheimer-Murphy/e/B004JPBM6I
Is there an upcoming or current release you would like to share with us today and where can we find it?
Heart of the Ozarks
Contemporary romance/drama Ebook
ISBN: RIP 0001112
Rebel Ink Press $5.99
After St. Louis TV weathercaster Cole Celinksi loses his almost estranged wife and three children in a car crash, his boss orders him to take a leave of absence. Against his will, Cole leaves the city in late May to find the rest and relaxation everyone else thinks he needs. Without anywhere else to go, Cole heads for Lake Dreams, a resort on the quiet side of Lake Taneycomo in the Ozarks he visited each summer as a child with his grandparents. Some of his best memories were made in the lakeside vacation haven with his summer friend, Maggie.
Upon his arrival, Cole learns Maggie now runs the place. Twenty years have passed but from the minute he returns, they reconnect and soon their mutual attraction ignites. He fishes in the lake, takes Maggie to visit some of the places he remembers and begins to find out who he truly is. Before he can heal, he must learn to deal with his loss and to see if he can create a new family with Maggie and her children. It’s a task he’s not sure he can handle but if he wants to be with Maggie, he must. A near tragedy brings them all together into a close knit unit and afterward, Cole may be able to make his dreams reality.
Heart of the Ozarks “kiss” excerpt
Cole’d almost forgotten how pleasant kissing a woman he cared about could be until he kissed Maggie.
Her lips yielded to his unexpected kiss, warm and silky beneath his mouth. Something sparked between them, old and familiar but new too. The kiss kindled desire, his want surging strong and rich through Cole’s body and with it, he felt renewed. Fiery electricity danced through his nervous system, tingling and reviving him. When Maggie touched him and placed her hands on his body she stirred the embers almost faded in the ashes of his soul. His living force within soared, catching fire with a whoosh rocketing from his feet to his head.
Cole didn’t think, just experienced. He inhaled the essence of her shampoo, caught a whiff of her perfume, and tasted lingering coffee on her lips. Her slender body shifted so she stood so close a thin sheet of paper couldn’t pass between them and warmth filled the space. His years, the months of tragic induced agony, the maturity of his third decade, more than halfway to his fourth melted like candy in the rain until Cole felt the wild, heady intoxication of youth. A carnal yearning rose in him like a wild animal’s need to mate and yet something else tempered, a caring sense of connection. He wanted to ravish her and yet nurture her, all at once. He ached to use her like a whore and own her but deeper, Cole longed to become one with her, to twine not just bodies but merge souls.
He deepened the kiss until his tongue worked into her mouth and Maggie moved the rest of the way until her breasts rubbed his chest. She made a soft little mew of pleasure and he knew he could have her, take her there on the living room couch, her body supported against the pillows she’d chosen at Wal-Mart or JC Penney’s. He didn’t doubt it and because he knew, he didn’t. Cole let the kiss wind down, slow and easy. He allowed one of his hands to crawl from her back to fondle her full breasts with a gentle caress. He almost lost control again when she arched her back like a satisfied kitten but he eased back to normal, his breath a little quick and grinned at her. Maggie smiled back with an unfocused gaze. She looked the way he felt when he came out of a movie he’d really gotten involved with, dreamy until he walked into the sunlight and a jolt of reality.
“Oh, Cole,” she breathed, her tone filled with appreciation and what he thought might be affection.
“I guess you liked it,” he said, without planning. “I’m glad. I thought you might slap my face for that.”
Maggie laughed with a musical quality so sweet it ramped up his blood pressure a few notches. “I wouldn’t,” she told him, “But, oh, Cole.”
She shook her head and her hair floated around her shoulders in a cloud. “I’ve been ready for you to kiss me again for twenty years but I don’t know if you are.”
His scarred heart skipped a beat. Hell, he wasn’t sure either but he wanted to be and just that alone equaled a miracle. “If you’d asked me a week ago,” he said, “I’d have said no way. Yesterday I’d thought maybe in a distant future.”
“What about now?”
“I don’t know,” he said, “But I want to find out.”
She’d always been mercurial, a creature of many moods and faces so he wasn’t surprised when she put her hands against his chest and said, eyes smoldering, “Kiss me again and see what happens.”
Cole almost did but rational thought stayed him. “If I do,” he told her, without any bullshit, “I won’t be able to stop this time at just a kiss.”
Maggie’s eyes met his and hers were filled with the naked yearning of a hungry bird and the innocent trust of a pet bunny rabbit. “I don’t care, Cole. I want you.”
Everything he longed for in this moment she offered but he shook his head. “I want you, Maggie, in every way a man can want a woman but it’s not the right time. If we do this now, it’ll end up bad. You’re vulnerable and the last thing I want to do is hurt you, honey.”
“I might without meaning to do it,” he said, his voice husky with emotion. “We’ve brought something to life so let’s don’t ruin it before it has time to grow. We’ll be together when its right, I promise.”
Tears shimmered in her eyes and he thought she’d cry but Maggie didn’t. She nodded and put her fingers against his cheek. “You’re being sensible, I guess, Cole. Just tell me it’ll be soon.”
“God, yes,” he said with feeling, enough she laughed.
Book trailer: http://youtu.be/ODVN6JBH-Xo
Before we let you leave us today, 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.
This is my chili recipe. The story behind it is that my grandfather, stationed at what was then Camp Hood during World War I, got a taste for chili. He came back to Missouri after the war and tried to create the dish. His sons, my dad and uncles, each took the recipe to a new level. The original was made, old school Mexican style with beef chunks and the beans separate. This is my dad’s recipe – he spent decades perfecting it and I have to say it’s fine chili!
Chili Sontheimer Style
2 big onions (chopped)
4 med. celery stalks (washed and chopped)
2-3 garlic toes
3 lbs. ground beef
Salt ; to taste
Pepper; to taste
½ cup Williams® chili seasoning
3 cans red beans
4 c water
opt. chili powder
1. Get big pan
2. Spray pan w/ cooking spray
3. Pour canola oil in pan ; coat bottom of pan.
4. Turn pan on to med. heat
5. Chop celery finely (use food processer if available)
6. Chop onions w/ the garlic
7. Add/ Cook the onions, celery, and garlic
8. Add meat, chunk meat
9. Add pepper and salt
10. Brown the meat; then drain fat
11. Add Williams® chili seasoning and opt. chili powder
12. Add 4c water
13. Add beans
Cook chili to preferred consistency ( watery, dry etc.)
Cool, then cover and put in fridge
Reheat and eat next day for maximum flavor
© Sontheimer-Murphy Family™
Lee Ann, it's been an absolute pleasure learning more about you and your new book and I love that cover by the way. Thanks again for the recipe as well, my family loves chili!! Perfect for the fall season.
Readers, don't waste any more time, go get Heart of the Ozarks today. Here's the buy links again...
Until next time, happy reading !!!