Q and A with D.G. Kaye – Author Promotion Series, Featuring Marie Lavender

Welcome to this edition this month to my author series, Q and A with D.G. Kaye. I’m happy to introduce Romance and Multi-Genre Author, Marie Lavender here today to share a bit of herself, her writing and her books, and tell us a little about her book Directions of the Heart – A Romantic Drama Collection.     About the Author: Multi-genre author of Victorian maritime romance/family saga, Heiresses in Love Series, and 21 other books. Reached the Top 10 Authors list on AuthorsDB.com for the last 4 years. Featured interview in the January 2018 issue of Womelle Magazine. BLOOD INSTINCTS reached TOP 10 status in the Romance category. DIRECTIONS OF THE HEART both reached the semi-finalist round in the 2018 AuthorsDB Book Cover Contest. Voted TOP BLOGGER for 2018 on the Romance Lives Forever Blog. TOP 20 Authors of 2018 on Amy’s Bookshelf Reviews blog. DIRECTIONS OF THE HEART was nominated and made it past the first round in the 2018 Author Academy Awards. UPON YOUR LOVE and THE MISSING PIECE placed in the TOP 10 on the 2017 P&E Readers Poll. DIRECTIONS OF THE HEART was nominated for the 2017 Reader’s Choice Awards. The I Love Romance Blog became a finalist in Start Dating DK’s Romance Blog Awards of 2017. ILRB landed on Feedspot’s 2017 TOP 100 Novel Blogs and TOP 100 Romance Blogs. DIRECTIONS OF THE HEART placed in the TOP 10 Books of 2017 on Amy’s Bookshelf Reviews blog. TOP 20 Authors of 2017 on Amy’s Bookshelf Reviews blog. Mystery Blogger Award for 2017. A to Z Blog Challenge Survivor in 2016. March 2016 Empress of the Universe title – winner of the Broken Heart themed contest and the I Love You themed contest on Poetry Universe. SECOND CHANCE HEART and A LITTLE MAGICK placed in the TOP 10 on the 2015 P&E Readers Poll. Nominated in the TRR Reader’s Choice Awards for Winter 2015. Poetry winner of the 2015 PnPAuthors Contest. The Versatile Blogger Award for 2015. Honorable Mention in the 2014 BTS Red Carpet Book Awards. Finalist and Runner-up in the 2014 MARSocial Author of the Year Competition. Honorable mention in the January 2014 Reader’s Choice Award. Liebster Blogger Award for 2013, 2014 and 2016. 2013 and 2014 Amazon Bestseller Ranking for UPON YOUR RETURN. Winner of the Great One Liners Contest on the Directory of Published Authors. Marie Lavender lives in the Midwest with her family and two cats. She has been writing for a little over twenty-five years. She has more works in progress than she can count on two hands. Since 2010, Marie has published 22 books in the genres of historical romance, contemporary romance, romantic suspense, paranormal romance, dramatic fiction, fantasy, science fiction, mystery/thriller, literary fiction and poetry. She writes adult fiction, as well as occasional stories for children, and has recently started some young adult fiction. She has also contributed to several anthologies. Her current published series are The Heiresses in Love Series, The Eternal Hearts Series, The Magick Series, The Code of Endhivar Series and The Blood at First Sight Series.   Let’s get to know more about Marie and her writing:   Do some of your own character traits or personal experiences spill into your book’s characters? A few of my own traits have spilled into some of my characters (for example, being a hopeless romantic), but mainly I let the characters guide me toward their own personalities. All of them are different. However, yes, my personal experiences have colored certain backgrounds for characters, or just events in stories. I believe there’s nothing more cathartic for a writer than pouring those deeply felt emotions about a certain experience onto the page. While I was going through a particularly rough time in my first romantic relationship, I found myself writing a historical romance novel. That became book one of the Heiresses in Love Series. DG – I can well imagine that it’s not hard for us as writers to incorporate a little bit of ourselves and our own experiences into our books.   Do you have a difficult time choosing titles for your books? How do you choose your titles? Titles are often challenging. My usual approach is to toss around a few ideas, and then start writing. I can worry about the official title later. As the story develops, and all the nuances come to light, I get a better picture of what might be the best title. Sometimes I know right away what that title will be – a catchphrase or a few words taken directly from a line of dialogue – but I often don’t know the exact title of a book until I’ve finished writing the manuscript. I ruminate on it for a while; let it stew in my subconscious. Then it cleverly falls into place. DG – I totally hear you. Titles for my own books come easily to me too in a similar way.   Did you have a passion to write as a child? Do you remember the first thing you wrote? I pretty much always knew I wanted to be an author. I often told my family how much I wanted to write for a living. Stories played out in mind even before I first put a pencil to the page. No, I don’t exactly remember the first story I wrote. What stands out in my mind, though, is one I had to write for a project in the fifth grade. We got our ‘books’ laminated, and I think I titled mine The Mystery of the Golden Chair. I only recall the barest of details about the plot, but I know the story was set in Italy. DG – Wow! Now that’s impressive – writing a story in 5th grade in a different cultural setting. Makes me wonder how you did the research for such a young little girl. 🙂   Do you find your writing is geared toward a specific audience or do you just write what inspires you to write? I often let story ideas just come to me. I don’t think about who will read them beforehand. The muse leads me, and I stay true to my vision for the story. If I wasn’t inspired to write something, I think it would be much harder to focus on that project. I wrote a children’s story once, and it became A Little Magick, book two of the Magick Series. But there was no advanced planning with that one. It came out of nowhere! Had you asked me years ago if I’d ever write a kid’s fantasy, I probably would’ve said no. That’s the funny thing about the muse, though. It takes you to so many unexpected places! DG – I think it’s incredible that you can write among so many genres!   Would you like to share with us what upcoming projects and/or ideas for books you’re working on? Chasing Ginger, a romantic comedy and book one of The Misfits Series, should be out soon.   I’m also wrapping up work on a romantic mystery collection, which is titled First Target. In other news, I plan to submit a young adult mystery story to a magazine. As for additional projects, my initial plan is to work on Magick Sunrise, a lighthearted romantic fantasy and the final book of the Magick Series, after I’ve accomplished the aforementioned goals. I would also like to get back to writing some historical romances again. The process of writing that type of romance novel is never easy, yet it’s so rewarding.   Blurb for Chasing Ginger (I am unsure of the release date, but hope to have it out in late 2019 or early 2020): Chased by a group of angry men. Saved by quite a hunk. This is not the résumé Ginger Halloway ever imagined having. But thanks to a miracle pill, which makes her size 22 frame instantly sexy, that’s what happened. Yet, now Lance Franklin is showing interest in her, and she can’t figure out if he really likes her for her, or if it’s just because of a bizarre drug. And her wild bunch of friends, The Misfits…well, they’re always getting her into some interesting situations. So, yep, business as usual. Except for the guy. What the hell should she do about him? As for Lance, he believes he’s lucky to have found Ginger. But can he convince her they should go for it? With some new attention from the hottest guy she’s ever met, Ginger can’t help but wonder…is this all too good to be true? Genre: BBW Billionaire Romantic Comedy   My Inspiration for Chasing Ginger: The origin story for this book is actually a bit funny. I had posted a meme on Facebook about wishing extreme sexiness came in pill form, and a reader commented on the thread, saying I should write a story about it. My reaction was, “Oh, God! I don’t need one more to add to my numerous works in progress!” However, the muse had a mind of its own, and lo and behold, a few days later, I’d come up with not only a basic synopsis for the plot of the romantic comedy novel, but also plans for the rest of the series. I guess you never know where a good idea will come from… DG – Wow, I’m so impressed by the amount of books you’ve written – and are now writing. I truly commend you. And I love the origins of your book Chasing Ginger. This read sounds right up my alley!   Let’s turn our focus to your featured book today – Directions of the Heart. Were there any parts of the book where you struggled? Yes, somewhat. I had to work hard to dig much deeper than the original drafts for these tales. To get into each character’s mindset and tell the story from his/her perspective. To think about the hardships I experienced in life, and how I might’ve reacted to their specific events. But once I did, I knew that being fully authentic was more important than my fears about getting real with readers. There are dark parts of the human condition told in this collection, and I never shied away from those realities.   Did you get your book cover professionally done or did you do it yourself? This cover was designed by the amazing Sherry Soule at SwoonWorthy Book Covers!   Universal Buy Link https://books2read.com/u/mY15jG   Blurb: Embark on a remarkable journey of drama, romance, and passion… In all of these amazing stories, there’s one burning question…is love worth the risk? Without You Reece and Jenna are two childhood friends separated by time and distance. Can they find a way to heal their bond, or perhaps forge a new one? Strange Heat Spurred by her friend’s close call, Victoria decides to take a risk and prove the lifestyle she led was her downfall. But as Tory sinks deeper into the tumultuous abyss of desire with the mysterious Rick, can she climb back out before it’s too late? Or does she even want to? Memories Struggling to run her family’s farm on her own, Sadie takes on a hired hand, Matt. As they grow closer, so does the danger. Someone wants her legacy. Can they combat this new threat, as well as the demons of the past, before Sadie loses everything, including her life? A Touch of Dawn Caitlyn thought she’d be in the dark forever. But with the light came Jack, the police consultant who found her. Can they take a journey of healing together, or will Caitlyn retreat into the darkness of her mind, where she lived for so long? (CONTENT WARNING: With an abuse awareness theme in this collection, there may be triggers here for past trauma sufferers. However, HEAs are guaranteed.) Genre: Contemporary Romance, Drama My Inspiration for Directions of the Heart: The idea for the collection actually came from a plan to fully revise and re-release some works from my backlist. But … Continue reading Q and A with D.G. Kaye – Author Promotion Series, Featuring Marie Lavender