Monday, June 25, 2012

Interview with Francis Ray - Romance Author

Francis Ray
Romance Author
Release Party for A Dangerous Kiss

     Welcome to my interview with Francis! Yet another of her books is being released this week and she's here to celebrate with us! Gather around the table, pull up another chair, as we enjoy coffee and snacks at an outdoor cafe in busy Manhattan! The warm summer breeze makes us want to fill our book bags before we head to the beach and we hope you'll add a few of Francis' books!

Deanna:  Francis, thank you for bringing us all together here in Manhattan. The city is alive with people and traffic. Tell us a bit about yourself.

Francis: I hope everyone can enjoy the city! I started reading romance books late in life, but after the first book I was hooked.  Now that I write, I really miss those long leisure hours of reading.  Reading is a great addition that you can proudly admit to in public. 

Deanna:  For an evening out, would it be dinner or a movie? What would the dinner be? What might the movie be?

Francis: For an evening out it is usually dinner at a steakhouse.  I like action films like Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocol.

Deanna:  Do you prefer wine, whiskey, scotch, or ice tea?

Francis: I prefer sweetened iced tea with lots of ice and a splash of fresh lemon juice.

Deanna: What do you do to relax when you aren’t writing?

Francis: I love reading and working in my flower garden.  I can look out my office window and just enjoy the flowers in that particular bloom season or relax outside with my iced tea and a romance book.

Deanna:  That does sound enjoyable. Do you have to split your writing time between a day job?

Francis: As of this month I can say I write full time.  I've looked forward to this day for a long time.  My hope is that I can be disciplined and increase my output from 4 to 6 books a year.  Wish me luck.

Deanna:  Congrats on being able to write full time and good discipline will help you achieve your goals! How many plots do you include in one of your books?

Francis: In my romance books I have 1-2 two plots.  In my women's fiction I usually have two romances going on so the plots increase to 2-3. 

Deanna:  Readers love to know how writers spend their day. Tell us about a typical day in your life as a writer.

Francis: A typical day for me in the summer is hand-watering all the pots of flowers (17), a light breakfast, answering email, doing a little social networking, and then it's time to work on the current book.  That 'work' might be actual writing, research, or plotting.  If I have a book out that month there is also marketing, answering fan mail and book signings.

Deanna:  What one thing would you pass on to new writers?

Francis: Be gracious, and remember that another writer's blessing might not be yours. Be thankful for your accomplishments, but never stop trying to improve on the craft of writing.  I know more than one.  Sorry.

Deanna:  Helping others and hoping they reach a successful limit is just good karma and comes back two-fold! We have to cheer each other on! Do your books have a common theme or are they all different?

Francis: The reoccurring theme of my books is the strength and resiliency of women, and the power of love.

Deanna:  What are the physical characteristics that you admire in a man?

Francis: I admire tall, athletic men.  My husband was six-two, but physical characteristics wouldn't have drawn me to him.  It was the strength of his character and yes, that great smile, that attracted me the most.  Beauty, as the old saying goes and our readers know, fades.

Deanna:  Tell us about your latest book and the type of reader if may appeal to.

Francis: A DANGEROUS KISS is the 3rd book of the Kiss trilogy and 7th book in the Grayson Friends series.  The book should appeal to readers who love hurting/healing books.  Payton "Sin" Sinclair has a painful and a dangerous secret that he's carried since he was eighteen.  He's based his life on the premise that love and family will never be his.  He doesn't expect to find himself attracted to Summer Radcliffe, the beautiful cousin of his best friend.  He's torn between these unexpected feelings and duty. Read more about the book HERE.

Deanna:  That certainly sounds like a wonderful story. Tell us about Summer Radcliffe, the heroine of your latest book. 

Francis: Summer is an intelligent, independent woman.  She lost her parents when she was eighteen. She achieved theirs and her dream of owning a 5-star restaurant in Manhattan. She's strong because of Sin who was there for her when tragedy struck. Once they share a earth-moving kiss, she has no intention of letting Sin get away. The Radcliffe motto is go after what you want!

Deanna:  Do you do any research for your books?

Francis: Yes, lots. The Kiss Trilogy is set in New York, and although I've visited several times, I still researched the city online.  Then, there were the characters occupations - computer programmer, fashion editor, sports consultant, and restaurateur. I'd like readers to learn something each time they read one of my books.
Deanna: What inspired you to write in your genre?

Francis: I was inspired to write romance because of the monogamy of the characters, their strong moral values,  and the happy endings.  It’s a given that people will have problems in a relationship.  I liked how the main characters in romance novels worked through problems in a sensible, moral way.

Deanna:  Readers do enjoy a series where they can become friends with the characters. Did you enjoy writing the hero or heroine more in A DANGEROUS KISS?

Francis: It would have to be Payton "Sin" Sinclair because of the burden he carried.  I just love a hurting hero.  He was so noble, so sure that love wasn't for him.  It was a pleasure to prove him wrong. 

Deanna: What do you find is the hardest part of writing?

Francis: Writing is the hardest part of writing.  After the initial “what if” it takes me a long time for me to write the story. Love scenes are the most difficult to write.  I'd much rather shut the bedroom door, but my readers would riot.  LOL. 

Deanna:  Sexual tension is sexy, too, but they DO love those romance scenes. What do you need before you start writing? 
Francis: I don’t need anything to start writing. However, I find it goes faster if I’m on the computer. Pen and paper no longer work for me.

Deanna: What are you currently working on?  What's next in the series? 

Francis: I recently finished ALL I EVER WANTED, book # 8 in the Grayson Friends series.  In a week or so I'll start on ALL I EVER NEED, Book # 9. 

Deanna:  Francis, thank you so much for taking time out of your busy schedule to chat with our readers this week. Readers, we thank you for stopping in! Be sure to leave your comment and email addy so Francis can reach the winner and send you the e-book.

New York Times & USA Today Bestselling Author

THE WISH, eBook - November 29, 2011

A SEDUCTIVE KISS, A Grayson Friends Novel #5 - January 31, 2012 

WITH JUST ONE KISS, A Grayson Friends Novel #6 - February 28, 2012

WHEN MORNING COMES, - June 5, 2012
SING TO MY HEART: Then Sings My Soul, -June 19, 2012

A DANGEROUS KISS, A Graysons Friends Novel #7 -June 26, 2012
I KNOW WHO HOLDS TOMORROW, October 30, 2012 

CONTEST:  On Saturday, June 30, one lucky commenter will win an e-copy of A SEDUCTIVE KISS


  1. Great interview Deanna and Francis! It looks like you have a great selection of books. The covers are lovely! I like your recurring theme too--beautifully said.

  2. Your book covers are so pretty. Your stories sound very good. I have not read your book as of yet. Will have to add them to my reading. Do you have any say in your covers?
    Sue B