Thursday, August 19, 2010

Author Interview - Renee Vincent

 Renee's Winner is......
Tammy Morse....Congratulations!!!

Thank you so much for joining us for the launch party for the much acclaimed Renee Vincent...and the release of Raeliksen! We are taking you back to the 10th century, Ireland to be exact, and thank you for dressing appropriately! Please, carefully make your way up the stairs and our hero will guide you out  to the garden overlooking the ocean for our party! 

Deanna:  Renee, I'm so excited that you're here today. I know you are very busy with the release of this book. Our readers are anxious to get acquainted. Tell us a bit about yourself that our readers might not know.

Renee:  I was born and raised in Kentucky and couldn’t think of living anywhere else—well, maybe Ireland. I have no trouble imagining me writing in a summer cottage off Ireland’s west coast, but only through the months of May, June, and July. Beyond that, I’d be too cold.

I have two beautiful daughters who keep me very busy, but I wouldn’t change being their mother for the world. They are honestly the light of my life. Like myself, they enjoy horseback riding and we often go trail riding as a family.

I live on a hundred acre farm with my wonderful husband of almost seventeen years and it is a great place to find inspiration. Most mornings, you can find me on the shore of our lake just outside our home—with a cup of hot coffee in hand for sure.

Deanna:  What made you want to become a writer?

Renee:  I have always wanted to be a writer, but once I got to college, things changed and somehow, I found myself taking a different path. I acquired a degree in Radiologic Technology and worked at Children’s Hospital for three years on the night shift, which was mostly trauma and surgery given it was a Level 1 Trauma Center.

Once I worked with kids, I knew I wanted to remain in a career that involved children, but a job that was more family friendly. Night shift in x-ray had its perks, but not if you wanted to start a family of your own. At least not for me, anyway. So, I left the medical field and tried my hand in education—teaching pre-school children, that is.

I taught for nine years during which I had my first child. Once my second was born, I became a stay-home mommy. And at that moment I realized this was the perfect time for me to finish a love story I had been working on since I first got married.

Now realize, this story had many versions and many deletions before I sat down to write on it again. In the past, I couldn’t get past a few chapters before I ripped the paper out of the typewriter (yes, that’s right, a typewriter) and threw it in the trash. Later on, it was the delete button as I wrote and saved to a floppy disk.

Anyway, to make a long story short, my little sister was the only one who read the first chapter and she told me to finish it. I never really paid much attention to those words until a few months later when she died in a tragic car accident on the way to college. What made it worse, was she passed on my daughter’s birthday.

We had a difficult time getting through those first few months, but I must say, I did better than most as I had a place for my pain and anguish. I poured all of that into the book as I remembered my sister’s words—finish the love story!

After a year it was complete, but I never submitted to a publisher or agent. It was not about making a writing career for myself. It was about finishing the story and making it available to everyone in the world who just might want to read it.

So I self-published it—Ræliksen—and amazingly, it took off. I have my sister to credit for that. She had lit a spark within me which didn’t fizzle out. I designed a website, blog, and hit all the social networking sites I could, working hard at creating a name for myself in the big sea of authors.

And finally, my hard work paid off. This year I signed a 3-book deal with Turquoise Morning Press which included the re-release of Ræliksen (with a hot new cover), its sequel, Mac Liam, and the third book in the Emerald Isle Trilogy. I couldn’t be happier with this opportunity! And I have my dearest sister, Lindsey, to thank for it.

Deanna:  What an amazing series of events. I’m sorry to hear about your sister, but what an inspiration to finish your novel. I’m sure our readers are glad you finished it also. For privacy issues, some author write under a different name. Do you write under a pen name?

Renee:  Yes, my pen name is Renee Vincent. I took my middle name and my husband’s middle name to form it.

Deanna:  Your characters seem so real, especially your hero, Dægan. Is there a certain type of character that is easier to write than another?

Renee:  Great question, Deanna. For me, I love to write the Alpha Male hero and for some reason, it is easier for me to write that point of view than any other. I guess it’s because I prefer heroes over heroines when I read romances. I can always remember the heroes’ names and rarely the heroines. That’s just me.

In general, I find men to be more interesting—the way they think, react, and the way they love a woman, especially when they are trying hard not to. I love how they stick to a decision and always retain a sense of honor within that choice. And let’s not forget the great physical aspects of the male—their hard muscular bodies. I mean what romance fan doesn’t like a flat, rippled stomach, broad shoulders, and a hard-walled male chest?

Hmm…did I just digress from the question?

Deanna:  Some have said an author shouldn’t read in their own genre for fear of writing like someone else. Do you read in the same genre that you write in?

Renee:  If it’s romance, I read it. Now, I used to only read historical romances since I preferred the sword-wielding, horse-riding, roguish warrior heroes. But lately, I’ve read some really great contemporaries and honestly, I’m suddenly taking a liking to the modern day hero. So much, in fact, that I’m working on a contemporary romance myself. It’s a work-in-progress, but I hope to release it next year sometime with Turquoise Morning Press.

Deanna:  As an author, have you ever experienced writer's block?

Renee:  Many times! But I don’t let it discourage me. I stop writing for a while, whether it is hours, days, or even weeks, and eventually the descriptions or dialogue come to me. I'm never at a loss for words, just sometimes at a loss for the perfect words.

Deanna:  Have you ever given thought to writing in another genre besides romance? 

Renee:  Yes, I have actually—a Children's Chapter Book. My 12 year old daughter has asked on several occasions if I'd write a book she could read. I haven't made any promises, but I'd love to surprise her one day.

Places to find Renee Vincent:
     (opening these links will take you away from this interview. Open in a new tab)

Romance Books “R” Us -  (Blogs on the 21st of every month)

Yahoo! Groups:

Deanna:  I love the story line, the characters and the way you write. OK, I love everything about the book! LOL Without spoiling too much of the story, can you tell us a bit about Ræliksen?

Renee:  I’d love to.

Ræliksen is a romance novel, but we’ve categorized it as Historical Fiction With Strong Romantic Elements simply because it has a surprise ending. As a historical author, I take great pride in my research and wanted to depict the true way of life back in the 10th Century. I wanted to present the brutal yet romantic aspects of European history, while giving my readers a story they would long remember, even after another book is opened.

I strongly encourage my fans to read the new published version of Ræliksen because it has been re-edited in order to tighten the POV within it. Plus, it will contain the first chapter of Mac Liam—which I must admit is very steamy!

For those who have not read the first version of Ræliksen, there are two men who love Mara, my Irish maiden. One, being Dægan Ræliksen, a Norse warrior who saves her life from a group of warring Vikings hell-bent on fighting the Irish kings for control over Dublin’s port. The other is an Irishman, Breandán Mac Liam.

Ræliksen is a love story featuring the Norse hero’s struggle to love and protect Mara, while Mac Liam is the Irishman’s account, only seven years later.

Here is the blurb to Ræliksen:

Mara, the daughter of an Irish clansman, was raised to believe the men of the North are heathens - murderous pagans without a moral bone in their bodies. Despite warnings of the Northmen's raids, and the growing threat of another incursion, Mara is continually drawn to her favorite place - the River Shannon.

Dægan Ræliksen, a wealthy chieftain from Norway's frozen fjords, secretly discovers Mara at the water's edge. He is charmed by her beauty and sensuous grace. As the days pass, his contentment with simply watching her grows thin. He can no longer deny his unabated desire for the young maiden. His search for a wife has ended.

However, Mara and Dægan come face-to-face in a time when Ireland is in turmoil - when every Irishman is being called up to fight against the Nordic foreigners. In these times of upheaval, how can Dægan make peace with Mara's father and acquire the woman he treasures? Furthermore, can Mara move past her fears and find the noble man within the savage?


The door of the bathhouse flung open and the two staggered in from under Dægan’s cloak, locked in each other’s arms. Once inside, Dægan kicked the door closed while still delving into her eager kiss and fumbling to find the cursed lock on the door.

Mara already started feeling the warmth of the wood and stone room soak through her, grateful for the oddity of the Norse’s bathing habits as they had put a stagnant, sweltering atmosphere to good use.

Unable to leave her kiss, Dægan whipped his sodden cloak across the room and removed his boots and kirtle, heavy, too, with rain, dropping them carelessly on the bench behind him. The slapping collapse of his wet garment seemed to slow his wild spontaneity to an attentive act of seduction. The glow of the amber flame, in the corner of the room softened the rigid bones of his face, but it did nothing to ease the callousness of his smile as he circled her.

Her braid, he moved to the side and breathed in carefully the smell of her body, the way the oils from yesterday’s bath harmoniously mixed with the nostalgia of the Erin rain. His breath came soft and hot behind her ear, while his hands snaked tenderly around her throat and down below her chin to undo the two brooches at her chest.

Without her realizing, he had released the jeweled clasp and chain, and let the drenched fine cloak fall heavily to the ground, and then he went to work, undoing the laces of her dress. He was talented with his hands, being able to trace the thin vertical line of her spine that connected her slender neck to her finely widened hips with one, while stripping her from her gown with the other, letting it too, fall to the floor.

He slowly turned her around to face him, not shy in dropping his eyes to her glistening chest. There was another smile on his face, one of kinder birth than before, as he intimately seemed to memorize each curve of her blushing body.

Likewise, Mara let her eyes plummet to his waist, seeing his arousal as visible as a winter moon. But her innocent glance must have become an inseparable stare, for he stepped closer, asking, “Do I frighten you?”

Mara lugged her eyes from his midriff to his face. “Nay, Dægan…”

Her voice trailed as he slowly neared her face, eye to eye, mouth to mouth, until suddenly his lips pressed so gingerly against hers, endearing at first, then greedily as the kiss lengthened. He coiled his arm around her back as his other hand slid over the silken skin of her buttocks, pulling her close enough to nestle his hardened body against the soft of hers.

Dægan fell away from her lips. “May I?”

Mara lifted her brows in wonder. “May you what?”

Without taking his eyes from her, he dragged a bucket of water across the floor with his foot. “May I show you how sufficient a few buckets of water can be?”

Mara hesitated at the thought of him bathing her. It was quite a personal thing to bathe another, more so between lovers, and how difficult it would be to stand there and let it happen. “Dægan…”

He dropped to his knees, sliding his hands down the back of her legs, tarrying around her thighs. “Please?”

A nervous smile crept in slowly. “You make it very hard for me to forbid you of anything.”

Dægan’s reaction to those words nearly sent her heart to slam out of beat as his eyes befit well the scoundrel smile he flashed in response. Before she could even think to change her mind, he dunked the soap into the bucket and lifted her foot to his knee, rubbing her calf and shins with the bubbly lather. After cleaning her entire right leg, he wasted no time in doing the left, and then stood to lather her stomach, breasts and arms, taking great care to be gentle.

And overly thorough.

Nervously, Mara lifted her chin as he crept up her neck and around her shoulders, finding it amazingly difficult to look him in the eye, for having a man actually cleaning and caressing every part of her body without a cause for shame was more than she expected this night. Every sweep and slippery stroke of his hands coerced a desire low in her stomach, an aching that consumed her every thought. She closed her eyes, following the enjoyable play of his hands as he left no part of her untouched.

All too soon, she found him pressed against her soapy body, whisking her near-orgasmic daydream away with one wolfish smile.

“My turn.”

Mara couldn’t breathe, but the lack of oxygen hardly inhibited her mind from inventing an excuse. “Have you not already had your bath this evening?”

“Not by the pleasure of your hands.”

Dægan gathered them, along with the soap, and placed them on his chest. “Come now, love. Touch me.”

Deanna:  Um.....ah....whew! Renee, that was a beautiful piece to share with us. I'm hooked and yes, that took MY breath away. Is it just me or is it getting warm here in the garden? Now, where were we.....(another deep breath) Uumm....Is there something you’d like to ask your readers as you promote this new re-release of Ræliksen?

Renee:  Indeed! I would like to know what makes a book stand out from all the rest in your mind? Is it the hot steamy sex scenes? The plot? The cover? The writer’s attention to detail? You tell me. What makes you, as a reader, remember a book long after it is closed and another is opened?

Deanna:  Readers, there you have it - ask and respond to Renee's request. We want to know your thoughts!

I’m breathless with anticipation to read this book to the end. I love the historical novels from Ireland, Scotland and England! You’ve been commended on the amount of research you’ve done for this series; I also like the way you sprinkle sexual tension throughout your writings. I’m so proud to be your friend and fan, Renee! Thank you so much for being with us these two days.

Renee:  Deanna, I'm honored to be here and share this time with our readers. So many have stopped in to be with us and I want to thank each and every one of you!

Deanna:  Readers, this launch party would not have been a success without your attendance, so both of us thank you for stopping in. We hope you’ve enjoyed your time here. Below are Renee’s instructions for her contest that you will NOT want to miss entering. Here is what’s in store for the winner:

 - signed copy of the old version of Raeliksen
- winner’s choice of the format of the NEW Realiksen
- book plates and book marks
- a Turquoise bracelet specially handmade by Kristy's Kreations for this occasion


- click and you’ll be taken to her website where you will complete the entry form for her contest. Be sure to put ‘blog contest’ in the subject line.


  1. *waving to everyone who is coming into the garden*

    Hello everyone! Thanks for stopping by and I look forward to meeting you all. Please make yourself at home.

    Deanna...the castle grounds look amazing! You did a fabulous job!

  2. WOW I loved coming down those stairs into this amazing garden to find the beautiful Renee! Renee I love your new cover and congrats on a THREE BOOK DEAL!! You're an amazing writer and I love love Mara.

  3. Thanks are so sweet! I could not be happier than this moment. Having my fans join me here is one of the best joys in the world.

    And real soon, you'll be experiencing it!

    For anyone who doesn't know, Tonya Kappes has just signed with Turquoise Morning Press and her new release comes out early next year!

    Thanks for the company, my dearest CP!

  4. Renee and Tonya, hello to you both! You look fabulous in your gowns! I know we've had a few secret visitors who think their presence isn't known, but I know for a fact we've had more than a few already. I hope they stop back to leave a comment for you, Renee.

    Daegan, thank you for showing me into the garden, you're a sweetheart! Don't let our guests turn you head or your heart, my dear!

    Renee, I really think you should interview Daegan on your blog, for sure! *w* I absolutely loved your excerpt! mmmm mmmmm mmmmmm

    Tonya, congrats on signing with Turquoise and I'm so glad you stopped in. Let me know when you're book comes out so we can get you scheduled her too.

    Cheers to you, Renee! I know we'll have a great two days here!

  5. *looks around at the lovely garden*
    What a lovely place! Thanks Renee and Deanna for inviting us all!
    *wiggles brows at Daegan* and thank you for the escort!

    Thank you so much Renee for sharing the wonderful excerpt with us. Now i must pull Ræliksen out of my TBR pile and put it on the top! I need to read the rest!

    The new cover is AMAZING!!!

    Renee - Can you share with us your best/favorite fan moment you have had as an author?

    Thank you lady's! this has been great getting to know more about you Renee! And thank you for the wonderful getaway!

  6. Hello, Renee & Deanna! Thank you for a wonderful interview : ) When Renee put "pen to page" and created the unforgettable "Raeliksen", she put her heart into every word. For lovers of historical romance, "Raeliksen" and the second and third books in the "Emerald Isle Trilogy" are not to be missed! Highly recommended!

  7. Hi,

    Thank you for the interview Renee and Deanna you asked some really good questions!!!

    I am sorry to hear about your sister but I'm glad to hear you turned your tragity into triumph. I have this book on my list and can't wait to read it and the others to come!!!


  8. Thanks for the interview. This trip down the stairs to the garden was a refreshing break from work.
    I liked the excerpt.

  9. Great interview. Nice to know some of the story behind the book. I am so wishing we had 100 acres and our own little lake.
    The excerpt gives a good idea about the book. It is steamy, and sensuous, but not crassly sexy. Best of luck with the rerelease of Raeliksen and best if luck with Mac Liam.

  10. Hi Renee. ~Waving~ Good to see you here. Love the excerpt and Deanna always asks great questions. Some lucky person is going to get some great prizes. That bracelet is beautufl! Congrats on your book deal. I am sorry for the loss of your sister. Hugs. I really like when a book grabs me on the first page and continues through the whole book. So I guess a lot of the plot, sometimes the cover and title. A couple of books I can think of had wonderful characters and the author pulled you into the book with feeling like your were actually there watching. And you wanted to be there. It's kind of hard to explain.
    Sue B

  11. Thanks for the interview. I love the new book cover. Can't wait to see the cover for The Fall of Rain: Book Three of the Emerald Isle Trilogy. I just can't get enough of Daegan.

  12. *checking on the refreshment table, making sure all guests have a full glass of champagne, dipping a strawberry into the dark chocolate....feeding one to Daegan*

    mmmmmm.....those are sooo good! I hope everyone is having a wonderful time.

  13. Renee, I wish we could have gotten to know Eirik better. Maybe we will in The Fall of Rain: Book Three of the Emerald Isle Trilogy.

  14. I've never read anything by this author but I really enjoyed the interview and the excerpt was very good.

  15. Deanna: Thank you first of all for being an incredible host to me. This beautiful castle is the perfect backdrop for any medieval lover. You have made me and my guests feel right at home. I am so grateful.
    And actually, Daægan did interview once on Anya Davis' blog. I'll post the link after I dig it up. Everyone loved him of course.

    JoJo: Thank you for coming here. And I'm so glad you enjoyed Dægan.
    To answer your question about my favorite fan moment...I don't know if I could narrow it down to just one. I have had so many as an author. To name a few, I once had a woman from Vista California send me my first fan mail a few months after I self-published back in 2008. She took the time to type her letter on Norse stationary! It touched me so much as I had no idea who this woman was, but she felt the need to actually write me. NOt email...write me and send it through snail mail. That was a big one.
    Another was some very touching emails I received after I put up the story of my sister on my website. It amazed me how thoughtful some perfect strangers can be.
    Others were gifts sent to me simply because they were so moved by Ræliksen and wanted to let me know how much they enjoyed the story.
    I even had a woman go to so much trouble to get my book that she ended up ordering it three times. The first time. Amazon never sent it. The second, it came but was the wrong book. The third time she ordered it, it came safe and sound, but soon after she opened it, her electric went out and had to read by candlelight. Now that is a die hard fan!

    So I guess what I mean is, that I treasure all my fans and I cannot just pick one over the other. I have been astounded by their loyalty and support through this journey of mine and I wish I could repay every single one of them back for their take-it-upon-themselves promo efforts, their generosity, and their word of mouth reviews.
    I hope that answered your question, JoJo.

    Virginia: Thank you, thank you, a thousand thank yous! And just so you know, you made me cry should know why. It was a lovely gesture and I am so grateful you continue to accompany me on this ride.

    Brandy: Big smiles here to know it's on your TBR list. I thank you for that.

    Andrea: Glad you could skip out of work and come here to the castle. Thanks for your kind comments about my they say, "There is more where that came from!"

    librarypat: I love my farm and I know I am super lucky to live in the place I do. I love that my children are able to go outside without the threat of strangers or cars. We live a "fur piece" back off the road *wink*
    Thank you for coming here today and lending me your support.

  16. SueB: Aww...thank you so much! You are too kind! I really like that bracelet too. Great to see you here...I love when I pick new followers along the way.

    Viking Princess: Oh just you wait! I think we've found the perfect pic for it...just waiting on the cover artist to work her magic! *wink*
    And on your side note about Eirik...I regret to say that he does not have a place in Book 3, however, in Book 2 there is a certain someone from Dægan's past who makes an appearance. This person was barely mentioned in Ræliksen...that's all I'm going to say.

    Deanna: We are having a great time! I mean how can you not with Dægan entertaining us all?

    Sherry: Well that is so very kind of you! I'm glad to meet you. Please make yourself at home and enjoy the evening.

  17. Renee and guests - we have the site counter about ready to spin out of control here. It's only day one and we have passed 100 visits today. OMG!

    Renee, I hope you received lots of entries into your contest! I can't imagine. I also hope you are having a wonderful time with so many guests stopping in to see you. The garden is overflowing with excited fans who want to know more about you. Congrats! You are such a sweetheart. I'm honored to be counted as a friend. *hugs*

    Cheers everyone! You have helped make day one a huge success here, thank you all!

  18. Oh my!! Daegan has Renee up on his shoulder for the crowd! LOL - be careful with her, Daegan!

    Cheers to Renee and Daegan!

  19. Deanna: So glad I could attract this many people to your blog--um, I mean the castle. haha

    I have had a lot of entries! The response is overwhelming! Keep 'em coming...

    Thank you is a new day and I hope to bring more followers here and let them meet Dægan.

  20. Loved the blog! The pics were beautiful and that excerpt took me to a very peaceful and entertaining place. How did you know what I needed today?

  21. LastNerve: hahah everyone needs a little bathhouse scene now and again.
    Thanks for letting me know you liked it.

  22. Thank you for the interesting interview! I'm so curious about Mac Liam I can't wait to order it! :D And thank you for this amazing contest! >_<


  23. I love a book that has alot of research in it. It really shows and makes the book that more interesting.


  24. Hi, this is Heather stopping by from A Bloggy Mom BlogHop!

    I'll be back again real soon, but in the meantime please come visit my blog too!


  25. It was great to read more about Daegan. Cant wait to get the book. Great interview!

  26. Giada: You are most welcome!

    Loretta: Thank you so much...and I am one of those authors who pride themselves on accurate historicals!

    Heather: Thanks for dropping by.

    Sarah: *can't stop smiling*
    Thank you for your sweet comments. You all are too kind!

    OK Now the moment you all have been waiting for....
    I am going right now to draw a name from the huge list of contest enterees (is that a word?) Be right back......

  27. Drum roll please.....................
    The winner is Tammy Morse!
    Congrautlations to you dear!
    (Tammy was just notified through email)

    I want to thank each and every one of you who came here to Deanna's blog and helped make my release week so special.

    Deanna, you have been the most gracious host and I am truly honored to have been here this week! We must do this again...say with the release of Mac Liam?

    I hope everyone has a wonderful weekend and please, watch your step on the way down. Those stone castle stairs get mighty slippery in this Erin rain. *wink*

  28. Tammy...congratulations on winning! You are so lucky to have won the beautiful bracelet. I think everyone else is jealous now. Enjoy!

    Everyone, I want to thank each of you for being a part of this release party for Renee and Daegan. You have helped make it a success and we've enjoyed all the fun.

    Renee....*hugs*....I don't want this to end; it's been too much fun and you had so many guests stop by. I look forward to doing this again in December for MacLiam. Please let me know the date so we can book the party. I'm reserving the castle on my way out! THANK YOU, EVERYONE!

    Be sure to follow both of our blogs so you can stay in touch!

  29. Congratulations, Tammy. Enjoy.