About the Book
Title: Message on the Wind
Genre: Historical Romance
Date published: April 9, 2015
Would you follow your heart, if it meant leaving behind everything and everyone you've ever known? Board a train with Ellen Price and travel to a new life. Even as she begins a new life, she'll change the lives of all she meets.
Ellie turned quickly to run back to the wagon. She abruptly ran into the front of a man and almost fell down, dropping her purchases all over the ground. Looking up, she realized that he must be the tallest man she had ever seen. Daniel Cooper was tall but this man was huge! He had very tanned skin and black eyes that were blazing at her. His very long, black hair was pulled back and tied in a way that was long out of fashion. His hands were on his hips and he was clearly incensed about something. "Excuse me," Ellie said, surprised by the obvious anger on his face and wondering why it was directed at her. "I didn't see you. I just need to get back to my friends..." As she tried to reach for her packages, the giant stepped in her way, his eyes narrowing. "What happened to Little Flower?" he demanded.
"Little Flower?" Ellie asked, confused for a moment by the unusual name. "Oh, you mean the woman? The clerk in the store gave her a difficult time about buying a blanket. First, he blatantly refused to wait on her and then he tried to charge her five dollars! She left without it so, I bought the blanket for her." She paused in her explanation, suddenly, tilted her head and stared up at him. This was quite difficult given the differences in their heights. "Why do you want to know, so rudely I might add?" The stranger looked Ellie up and down rather deliberately, his black eyes returning to stare into hers once more. Having found herself in similar situations before, Ellie simply endured his frank appraisal. He seemed surprised she challenged him, her hands now on her hips defiantly, but then bullies usually were surprised when anyone stood up to them. This one seemed no exception. His expression relaxed only a little. "I am usually the one protecting The People around here." "The People? I'm not familiar...with…?" Ellie asked, noticing he was still staring at her. She continued to stare right back at him and tried not to notice just how handsome he was. "Indians." The man's eyes narrowed further as he said this, as if expecting some reaction from her.
"Have we met?" "Oh, well," Ellie stammered, suddenly embarrassed at her own behavior. "I didn't realize that you meant... or that she was... well, it doesn't really matter that she is one of the People, does it? What a lovely way of putting that, much better than Indian. Anyway, he shouldn't have treated her that way. I only saw someone being taken advantage of. I do tend to stick my nose in when I see that. A terrible habit of mine but there you have it." Thinking the incident resolved, Ellie again moved to retrieve her things from the ground. "Now, if you will excuse me, sir, I really must find my friends..." The man moved to block her yet again, apparently not quite finished with her yet.
About the Author
Difficult to say, as it started very early in life. But, in earnest and with a passion, about 15 years ago.
Oatmeal raisin or chocolate chip?
Oatmeal raisin! I only like chocolate chip cookies if you use the recipe on the tollhouse chips bag but leave out the chips.
Do you ever write characters you hate?
In fact, I have written a character I loathe! Bridget McEwen makes her appearance in my next novel, To Reap a Whirlwind. Seriously, I tried to talk her out of being, well, who she is. Tried to soften the edges a bit and warm up a bit of the coldness. She would have none of it. The stubborn wee nag just will not warm up at all!
What's your favorite pie?
Warm apple pie with a cheddar cheese wedge on the side.
What do you enjoy, outside of writing?
Well, I'm never 'outside of writing'. I write whenever I do anything else too. Having said that, I love reading, gardening, needlefelting, playing board games, watching movies, camping, baking, canning, and spending time with friends/family
Were there any scenes in it that were difficult for you to write?
Not in Message on the Wind, or even it's prequel To Reap a Whirlwind. I anticipate the third novel in the series is going to have some very uncomfortable moments, though. The nature of what the family will face at the turn of the century is itself very troubling. The research puts me in a very dark place and so those scenes will be hard to write. Yet they are important for that reason, because they are events in history a lot of people are unaware of.
Do you prefer your books in print or e-book format?
I do love my e-reader, for convenience, but I adore books. Holding them, turning pages, smelling them... yeah, I like print best.
Batman or Superman?
Batman, for the techy-geekiness of all his gadgetry.
What is your favorite book?
I'm going with Outlander by Diana Gabaldon, because if I try and answer this any other way, the list won't fit on the page.
How do you get over writer's block?
I don't get it. At least, I never have. As a 'pantser', I write what comes to me. And, I learned long ago to never think about it while I'm writing it. I think many cases of writer's block stem from the writer judging their ideas before they ever put pen to paper. Every first draft is crap. If you know that, you let it be crap and just get to the writing.
Who is your favorite character that you've written?
This is really tough. Other than the one I loathe, that I mentioned above, I am really in love with all of my characters. They will not be happy with me if I choose only one.
What song do you sing in the shower?
Fight Song by Rachel Platten. It's my morning mantra.
Who is your favorite author?
I simply cannot choose only one. Diana Gabaldon, for amazing stories and for raising the bar on quality writing. JK Rowling, for being such an inspiration in believing in your own writing... and my daughter, Ellie, whose stories have always amazed me.
Do you ever feel frustrated with your work?
Not yet. I only get frustrated when life interferes with sitting down at my laptop to write.
How do you handle negative reviews of your books?
Not every book is for every reader. That's why there's chocolate and vanilla. And, I have had constructive criticism offered and I loved hearing it. I want to grow as a a writer and get better with every book.
What's something about you that most people don't know?
I'm rather short, 5'1", and my first love in high school was 6'2", so our friends started calling me BooBoo, as in Yogi Bear and BooBoo.
What are you currently reading?
The Carriage by Jena Baxter. I'm really enjoying it, when I can find the time to actually sit and read it.
Do you have a favorite genre to write?
Ugh, can I just say I hate pigeonholing stories into genres? I don't set out to write a certain kind of book. I write the story that comes to me. For the most part, that is historical fiction/romance, as a genre. But, I have two children's picture books coming out next year, a story for a dragon anthology, and lots of other projects in the works that aren't in that genre at all.
Is there a type of genre you refuse to write?
I would not refuse to write anything that comes to me. Whether I'd be good at it or not is another conversation altogether.
There's a lot of distractions around, especially with social media, how do you block it all out and write?
Since I can only write on a laptop, I have to make a conscious decision to close the internet windows. I also turn down the sound on my phone. I don't have a great deal of trouble doing that, though, because I love writing. When the uninterrupted moments come, I seize them with both hands.
Humor me, because this is my favorite (mythical) animal: Would you ever consider putting a platypire in one of your books?
Not only would I consider putting a platypire in one of my books, but I'd love to write a book about a platypire!
MOTW tote bag, MOTW mug, MOTW pendant, MOTW ribbon bookmark, Arrowleaf Balsamroot seeds, and my Re-imaginng Happily Ever After pin.