Friday, June 28, 2013

Author, author.... Winter Austin ~ The Degrees of Darkness Series & Giveaway all about it !!

So excited to introduce Winter Austin.  Welcome Winter, so great to have you here with us.  Can you tell us a little about yourself?

I’m a military wife (hopefully soon the wife of a teacher) and the mother of 4. A pet wrangler, a taxi cab driver, 4-H parent, and full-time author with a crazy penchant for baking. In my family I’m the weird writer you need to steer clear of lest you become the next character who meets their demise in some deadly fashion, but my crazy family members don’t run away. J In fact they all gravitate toward me, because I picked up on the great storytelling abilities that my grandmother’s family is known for.

Do real life events find their way into your stories?

Not usually. I write romantic thrillers and I’d be freaked out if some of the things I wrote in my books actually happened in my life. But I do steal dialogue lines from my husband and some of the people around me.

Do you ever mimic family members or people you know when you choose characters?

Little things like comments or gestures from family and friends tend to work their way into most of my characters. But no one person would be able to see themselves in any of my characters. Though my husband is somewhat the inspiration for a secondary character in my series, which tickles him.

I have warned people not to tick me off. LOL! Pays to be a thriller/suspense author. You can throw that comment around the: “if you irk me I’ll kill you off in my book.” *snicker*

Do you find yourself going back to the same inspiration for each story or is it always something different?

I’m an action junkie, so a lot of the times I fuel my imagination with thriller novels, movies, or intense romantic suspense novels. Cop shows like Castle have been a good source for picking up a plot point I could run with. Real life crime stories have been a huge source of inspiration, and right now I’m working on the 4th book in my Degrees of Darkness series and the plot is practically ripped from the headlines, but with my twist to it.

When do you write?  Early morning? During the day sometime or all day?  After the kids go to bed?

Most of my mornings are eaten up with getting my family going, and then prepping for the rest of the day, ie meals and errands. If the writing is going strong I will write in the morning. But mostly I sit down around noon or after and get to writing. Sometimes I’ll write in the evenings if nothing is going on with the family.

How do you feel about marketing your book?

I’ll admit if I didn’t have the agent I do I wouldn’t know the first thing about doing this properly. Marketing is hard, but with the right tools you can make it successful. I’m finding the tips and help from my agent helped me build my platform before I was even published. Now that I am, it’s building readership and readers love to communicate with you via Twitter and Facebook.

What social sites do you feel work best for marketing?

Twitter and Facebook. Everyone uses those 2 social media outlets. For authors, each of those needs to have a separate feel. I use my Twitter for announcing reviews and links to my books or special events. My Facebook page is where I interact more with the readers. On occasion I’ll be seen communicating with followers on Twitter, but I prefer Facebook for that. Feels more personal.

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?

For my Degrees of Darkness series, I already had the first 2 books written and half of the third one done and a hook line for book 4. My publisher Crimson Romance picked up the series with a proposal and the knowledge that 2 of the books were done. I’ve found it does make it easier if the book is completed because most publishers are looking to publish as soon as they can, and the less time they have to wait on the book to be completed, the happier they are. And like I said I have an awesome agent to help with proposals, so I just do the hard work—can we say ick on the synopsis writing—and she runs with the rest.

Is there any other genre that you would love to try writing?  If so, what is it?

I’m actually pretty happy writing in the genre I’m in: Romantic Thriller. And I did self-publish an Urban-Fantasy, I would like to expand on that a bit more. It does have my brand of thriller/suspense elements in it.

Do you always/ever see yourself as the heroine/hero when you write a story?

No. But I will admit, I will “act” out the dialogue scenes between the Hero and Heroine in order to hear what they’re really saying. Ahem, and no one is around when I do this. J

Just for fun, I have a few personal questions, 

Favorite 5

1)   Favorite Male Actor  - Tom Selleck

2)  Favorite vehicle – ’69 Ford Mustang—red or black

3)  Favorite way to relax – Reading or baking

4)  Favorite ice cream – Homemade with whole milk, Vanilla

5)  Favorite outfit – Anything I can wear my cowboy boots with.

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)

Oh, do I have to choose one? First, I’d probably live in Louisiana for a few years, then move to France, after that—if my husband could convince me to do so—live in Germany for a while. I’d love to connect with my long-buried French roots, despite what my family thinks. J

Where can our readers find you?? 

Twitter: @WinterAustin_




Amazon author page:



Is there an upcoming or current release you would like to share with us today and where can we find it?

Book 1 of The Degrees of Darkness Series—Relentless

“RELENTLESS is an intensely suspenseful book that will have you turning the pages wanting to know who the killer is, as well as find out who Remy really is and what is he running from.”–The Romance Reviews

“Winter Austin takes you on a chase to find the Rodeo Sweetheart Killer before it is too late. Once the killer is discovered, you'll be in shock like I was who it actually was. Be prepared for twists and turns in "Relentless" and once you do read "Relentless" you'll understand why it was named that title exactly.”—Book Lovin’ Mamas

Relentless is available now @  Crimson Romance:  Amazon:  Barnes and Noble:  Kobo: 

Book 2 of The Degrees of Darkness Series—Retribution currently released

Called to the homicide of a Dallas criminal lawyer, Detective Remy LeBeau stares at a scene that drags him back into his past. To another murdered lawyer in New Orleans. A case that put Remy on a collision course with death.
Cody Lewis struggles with the horrific memories of her kidnapping and the need to numb the pain. The battle she puts up causes her to avoid Remy and their undetermined relationship. But the flashbacks and nightmares are proving more potent than Cody thought and she’s having a harder time resisting the cravings for alcohol.

As the case takes a turn in revealing a professional assassin is behind the death, Remy begins to make decisions that could cost him his job and Cody. Because the deeper he sinks, the closer the enemies of his past come to finding him.

“RETRIBUTION keeps a rapid pace with turn of events that kept me at the edge of my seat. It was a wild journey with unexpected events and new characters that will make the upcoming books even more intense.”—The Romance Reviews

Retribution is available @   Crimson Romance:   Amazon:    Kobo:

Rafflecopter Giveaway (Two Digital Copies of RETRIBUTION & $5.00 Amazon GC)


  1. Thank you so much for hosting today!

  2. Thanks for letting me stop by, I enjoyed doing the interview. :)