Thursday, September 1, 2011

Author Interview - Charmaine Gordon - Contemporary Romance Author

      I have another wonderful author for you today. This is a special treat for me because this is the third visit for Charmaine here at my blog. She's a sweetheart of a friend whom I met here on the net and we keep in touch as often as we can even though we live 2500 miles apart. I knooow! That's a long way! I'm sure you'll agree how sweet she is after you 'meet' her, too!
     This beautiful, busy woman not only runs her own business and still finds time to write, she used to be on daytime television - a wonderful talent that helps in her writing, I'm sure! Please get comfy and join me in welcoming Charmaine Gordon!

Deanna:  Do you mentor any other authors who look up to you?

 Charmaine:  I belong to a critique group as well as Hudson ValleyRWA. We mentor each other. I’ve learned more from them than they have from me.
Deanna:  What would you say is important for upcoming/aspiring authors to do?
Charmaine:  Writing is a solitary business. If you can hook up with a small supportive critique group, you can find a feeling of community working together.
Deanna:  What has been your biggest help in becoming the writer you are today?
Charmaine:  Once upon a time I knew nothing about writing. I wrote a book and it was published. Now here’s the good part. Barnes & Noble invited me to a book signing where I met Chelle Cordero who bought my book. She contacted her publisher, Vanilla Heart and soon I was under contract with them. The response is that each subsequent book is better written than the previous one. Evidently practice helps a lot. Keep writing and don’t be afraid to let your emotions fly.
Deanna:  How has your life helped in creating your own characters?
Charmaine:  I didn’t realize how much of myself slips into the story but there it is on the page and in the voice. ..and why not? So personal and intimate many times.
Deanna:  What is the first thing you do when starting a new book - outline, synopsis, or just begin writing?
Charmaine:  A story comes unbidden in the night - a beginning and end. In the morning, I write, rewrite, edit, and add color as I go.
Deanna:  I’m sure all writers wish each story came that way. What is your strongest trait as a writer - dialogue, POV, characterization, etc?
Charmaine:  Dialogue comes easy, probably from my acting background. I picture characters and setting and use the senses. Very important to make the story live.
Deanna:  That’s one of the important things I learned long ago…all five senses must be used so the reader can step right into the story with our characters. What does your favorite male character look like?
Charmaine:  Rugged is what I’m attracted to. Imperfect features, ruddy complexion, strong build, not a muscle man but comfortable in his own skin and graceful.
Deanna:  I can see him, Charmaine! What, in your opinion, is the reason readers will return to read the next book in a series?
Charmaine: Haven - my latest release and first novella, is a sequel to RECONSTRUCTING CHARLIE. If you create a cast of interesting characters in the first story, hopefully readers will want to know what happens next.
Deanna:  How true that is! I love it when a character sticks in my mind and I want to know what happens next for them. Now we’re dying to know more about your newest book.
Charmaine:  My newest is titled Haven - it’s an old house in the woods with a gazebo complete with 2 rocking chairs from previous owners. Their ashes are scattered there. I would love to share a bit of it with our readers…

Jimmy Costigan gets more than he expected when his sister Charlie asks him to make a delivery to her new project, Haven. Her best friend Shelley Jackson is now a psychiatric social worker about to handle the first case to arrive at this respite. A mother and three children held hostage by a strange assailant have just come in and Shelley is alone, in need of another pair of hands.

One look at the amazing woman he's admired from a distance and Jimmy is a goner. He has no hope of a relationship with the brilliant Shelley but stays to help out. Just for a night. Until the children reveal that the bad man disappeared and is on the loose. The family is in danger. The police are called but Jimmy, a sucker for anyone in peril, is compelled to stay and protect those he cares for.
Deanna:  Wow…quite a different story line; I love it! Thank you! Readers, I hope you’re taking notes here. Now for fun questions - What would you do for fun if you took off a day from writing?
Charmaine:  Hands down, I head for the beach-palm trees, water lapping at the shore, endless lined of waves gently breaking, dolphins at play, and somewhere, Latin music playing. Recently, daughter, grandest granddaughter age 3+ and I were at Cape May, NJ. I settled in a beach chair, spiral notebook in hand and began a sequel to HAVEN. A woman sat near me, Kindle in hand and we talked. Before long, I handed her 4 bookmarks and on the spot, she bought 4 of my books. You never know.
Deanna:  We always have to be ready for those unexpectd moments! A sequel to Haven, hhhmmm....another visit in the future for you! What is your favorite meal?
Charmaine:  Favorite meal. Hmm. Broiled salmon, broccoli, baked potato and crème brulee OR filet mignon, steamed spinach, roasted red potatoes and crème brulee. Join me.
Deanna:  If you could have a dinner party with anyone you wanted, who would we see there?
Charmaine:  A dinner table with anyone. Mom who passed too young and my first husband who died suddenly  and w e still had so much to say after 37 good years, My daughter and granddaughter. Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin, Sid Caesar, Gandhi, Paul Newman, Mozart, Beethoven, Anthony Hopkins. Patrick Swayze, We need another table, please waiter. Kimberlee Williams, Chelle Cordero, and. . .
Deanna:  That’s a guest list I’d love to be included in! Charmaine, as always, it’s been a pleasure chatting and finding out more about you! Thank you for being here with us. Tell our readers about your contest.
Charmaine:  I’m looking forward to giving the gift of a book for the most insightful comment so come on boys and girls.
     Thank you, Deanna, for once again inviting me for tea and a chat. Below are my website and email addy for those who want to visit me. I love hearing from readers!

 Deanna:  Readers, thank you for stopping in to meet Charmaine and I hope her books will find their way to your ereader or book shelf! Here are a few of her other books: