- As a child, what did you want to be when you grew up? How has that childhood dream affected your current career? As a child, I wanted to be an author and book illustrator. I've accomplished my first dream, anyway. After teaching high school English for many years, I've come back to my childhood dream--thank God!
- What do you do for fun? For fun, I golf, ski and spend time with family. My husband and I love to travel, too.
- How has your environment/ upbringing colored your writing? Since I'm half Hispanic, I was able to use my Hispanic culture in my first two novels, OPERATION FAMILIA (award winner) and HASTA LA VISTA, BABY.
- Tell us about your latest book. Do you have anything new in the works and can you tell us a bit about it? BORN TO SING is the first of a series about professional singers and their careers and love lives. I'm excited about this series. And because I know a lot of professional performers, it's fun to research and write.
- How did you come up with the title for your book(s)? Some people with the gift of a great voice feel like they were born with this gift for a special reason--to entertain and inspire others. Thus, BORN TO SING.
- Have you ever used contemporary events or stories “ripped from the headlines” in your work? Not yet.
- How much of your work is real? How much is fantasy? My work is always based on real people, real incidents and situations. I mainly embellish the raw product. That's what makes research so much fun. I apply my imagination to something real and make it more exciting.
- Is there anything you find particularly challenging about writing? Promoting my work after it sells. This is the hard part. The creative part is so much more rewarding and fun.
- What advice would you give to writers just starting out? If you're not as tenacious as a mule, don't even start.
- Do you ever suffer from ? If so, what do you do about it? I've never had writer's block. When I get tired of writing, I do other things: Go to movies, go to church, go out with friends, read a good book, travel.
- Who is your favorite author and why? What books have most influenced your life? I have so many favorite authors but in the thriller category, I'd have to name Brad Thor and Vince Flynn. Also, Michael Connelly is a terrific crime/legal thriller writer. Growing up, I read a lot of F.Scott Fitzgerald, Ernest Hemingway, JOhn Steinbeck, Pearl S. Buck, Edna Ferber. Most Americans have never heard of these wonderful American authors. What a shame!
- How did you deal with ? At first, I was crushed and wouldn't write for weeks. Now, I just shrug and say, "Your loss, fool!"
- What tools do you feel are must-haves for writers? A clear head and the skin of a rhino.
- Where do you as an author draw the line on gory descriptions and/or erotic content? I only write what I personally like to read. For me, too much gore turns me off and gratuitous sex is boring.
- Do you ever research real events, legends, or myths to get ideas? All the time. I loved the story line of Noel Coward's play, PRIVATE LIVES. I might use it in one of my series books.
- Which is your favorite of the books you have written? OPERATION FAMILIA came straight from the heart and reflects a lot of the bicultural values I grew up with.
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