Hi Dawn! Thanks so much for having me here today. I'm thrilled to have the chance to sit and chat with you.
Can you tell us a little about yourself?
Well, I'm up at the crack of dawn every morning. I really don't need an alarm, although the four cats and two dogs who bunk in with me may have something to do with that. I can't settle in with my writing muse until the hounds have enjoyed their 'walkies' and the cats are sprung—they prefer the garden outside to using their litter boxes.
I'm an outdoor girl. I have a rustic cabin on a lake that can only be accessed by boat. I love the solitude there. My characters spring to life when I'm surrounded by mountains and water.
I'm a caffeine and chocolate fiend. I hate to admit it, but my favorite food group is dessert.
Fashion is important to me, but only when I'm out and about. When I'm writing I live in yoga pants and a tee, and sometimes my pajamas. Yep, I'll shower and dress to walk the dogs and then change back into ratty pj's. Of course, I'm talking summer here. Winter is an entirely different look. I like to write in front of the fireplace, bundled up to my eyeballs in fleece.
What started your interest in writing?I was an avid reader from an early age (about six) and I knew I was a storyteller. If I didn't like the ending of a children's book I was reading, I would change it, and entertain anyone who would listen with my creative genius (ha!). I especially enjoyed fairy tales. Grimm's were indeed grim, and I built on those to make them worse. I liked to scare the pants off my little pals and my youngest brother. I would pump up the terror factor until my mother stepped in and called a halt to my fun. My little brother had a lot of nightmares in those days. (Sorry Fred!)
I don't think I ever seriously considered becoming a writer although I loved everything about it. But, life has a way of changing the paths we travel. I began writing in earnest after my husband died. It was my way of coping with losing the love of my life. I had no interest in dating again, so I contented myself with writing romantic thrillers instead. I needed a perfect man in my life and what better way to find him than to create him? Even then, I never saw myself as a published author. Not in my wildest dreams. The journey has been wonderful and I feel incredibly blessed to be given this gift.
What is your book(s) about?
Lethal Abandon is about a woman in the wrong place at the wrong time. Remy is a wildlife biologist who stumbles over a body dump in the Everglades. From then on her life isn't worth the price of a gumball, because she comes face-to-face with the serial killers. She manages to escape, but these guys have a very long reach. They are part of a global network and they're coming to get her. Micah steps in to hide and protect her, the FBI wants to use her as bait, and all in all, she's having a really bad time of it. Micah is part of the Shadow Soldier team, a special ops, military reservist unit who help those in trouble when they're not away on military sanctioned operations. This is book 4 in the series and the release date is October 3rd. Just to let you know, all my books read well as standalones.
My other series, the Black Force Renegades, is about an elite taskforce of ex-military, Harley-riding undercover cops connected to the RCMP. Silent Deceit is the first story in that series, a little novella to get the ball rolling. It was released in 2013, and according to my readers, it kicks some serious butt. Natasha is searching for her missing brother by working undercover in an upscale biker bar. Skip keeps eyes on Natasha because she's a wildcard, although she doesn't know he is also a cop. These two are like fire and ice, so of course there's a romantic entanglement. There always is in my books.
What are you currently working on?
I’m doing the edits for Silent Justice at the moment (Black Force Renegades series, book 1), which focuses on Blue Falcone, commanding officer of the BFR. Blue is hot and super deadly, especially when his confidential informant is kidnapped by a violent underworld kingpin. Needless to say, he wants Rena back. And he's such fun to write! The release date will be in 2015.
I’m also in the early stages of Heated Abandon, starting the prep work (Shadow Soldier series, book 5). This is Hunt's story, and I can't wait to write it. It begins in a graveyard and slides downhill from there! This will also release in 2015.
I'm planning another short story as well. I recently wrote The Mystery of the Claddagh Rings, releasing this year as part of a Christmas anthology (Twelve Brides of Christmas). I have ideas for four more books that continue with the same back-story. I think of them as a miniseries and call it the Claddagh Connection.
Is there anything you would tell aspiring writers?
Yes, and that is to write, write, write! And don't hide your work in the closet or under a bed. We all need help to improve our craft. By that I mean the right kind of help, not friends and co-workers who aren't going to tell you the truth, or may not take your writing seriously.
If you write romance, I suggest you join Romance Writers of America. You can find them on the internet. Through them, you can also find a writing group in your area (worldwide) where published authors will encourage you on the right path, show you what steps to take as well as gently critique your work. By the way, most if not all authors have a critique partner. I don't hit 'send' to my publisher until my critique partner has read through my manuscript and given it the green light. And if there isn't a writing group in your area then find one on-line, one you're comfortable with. The possibilities are endless, with numerous writing workshops also available, both on-line and at conferences.
It is important to hone your craft before you can create what agents and publishers are looking for. Borrow books on the subject from the library—Stephen King's 'On Writing' is excellent, also Janet Evanovich's 'How I Write' gives you a bird's eye view of her process.
If you believe in yourself and are willing to work hard and invest the time, the magic will happen. It's a wonderful journey, I swear!
What was the hardest part of writing your book(s)?
Hmm, probably sitting in the chair and staying put until I've written the scene or chapter I'm working on. This means ignoring the phone when it rings. (I answer only if I'm at the cottage. Otherwise, my sons totally freak and send out a search party!) I also don't answer the doorbell. I don't check my emails and I don't surf the net. Focus is too important. If I lose that, I lose my writing muse, and I owe it to my readers, my characters, and the story I'm writing to pay full attention. So unless there's an emergency, nothing is budging me from that particular place in time for several hours.
You see, my books are largely character driven. I need to be 'in the moment' to orchestrate what they are doing and why. My heroines and heroes have this maddening habit of taking over if I allow it. I could be writing a chilling, nail-biting scene, and they want to have sex. Who knew, right? Okay, I realize I sound like a crazy person, but that's the way it is for me during the creative process.
Again, I'm an early riser. Most days I'm inhaling coffee by 4:30 or 5:00 a.m. because this is when my imagination vibrates, ideas pop, and the words flow. My writing day also finishes early, because I can't hold focus much longer than mid-afternoon. It's sometimes disappointing. I admire writers who are able to be 'in the zone' and create for longer periods of time. But, I'm not one of them. I need family, friends, fresh air, and sunshine to stay healthy.
If you could sit down with any author dead or alive who would it be?
Nora Roberts! I’d love to spend time with her, but I haven't had the opportunity. To me, she's the Grande Dame on so many levels, both as a savvy woman and a prolific writer. Nora is everything I aspire to!
Do you keep a notebook near you for when new ideas pop into your head?
Absolutely, and I don't leave home without it, as the American Express slogan goes. Many of my eureka moments occur during the night, when I'm out for the count and my brain is relaxed. I'll wake up and scribble a note to myself, so I don't forget whatever floated to the surface while I slept. It might be a nifty piece of dialogue, an amazing plot point, or an idea for a new book. I never know until it happens. I also use the notebook for timelines, to build character arcs, for back-story, and developing book outlines.
Is there anything you wish to say to your readers?
Yes. Thank you! THANK YOU! I don't think I can say it often enough or loud enough. Writing is such a solitary profession, and you have no idea how much I appreciate your words of encouragement. I've had the pleasure of meeting some of you at book signings. I've also gotten to know many of you through Facebook and your emails to me. It's heartwarming to know people are out there who love my stories as much as I do. It truly makes writing a happy place for me!
For readers who haven't tried your books yet, how do you think your editor or loyal readers would describe your books?
Dawn, I hate to answer for other people, so I asked my editor the question and this is what she said: "Books come from a deep well of imagination and Kallie certainly has plenty of that. It is a joy to edit her series because the characters have great depth and reality, while the suspense keeps you guessing. Of course, the romantic tension will please anyone who thrives on the strong male/female interaction. So as an editor, we review stories multiple times and each time I enjoy hers!"
And one of my readers recently sent me this email: "You deliver romantic suspense that I devour. If your novels were boxes of chocolate, I'd be in big trouble. Your heroines are smart, resourceful, and sexy. The ex-military and undercover biker cop heroes know how to serve and protect their women and defend our society against diabolical criminals. I love your books. They're definitely addictive just like chocolates, but they're calorie-free and extremely satisfying."
With an editor and fans like these, what more can a writer ask for?
Thanks so much for having me here today. It's nice to have the opportunity to talk a little about myself and my writing passion. With Dawn's permission, I’d like to offer one lucky reader e-copies of both Lethal Abandon and Silent Deceit. Just leave a comment and your email address in the comment section, and I will choose a winner and contact you. I'll also list the winner in the News section on my website at http://www.kallielane.com/.
Wishing you the best!
Book Genre: romantic suspense
Series Name: Shadow Soldier Series
(This is #4 in the series but all the books read well as standalones)
Publisher: The Wild Rose Press
When wildlife biologist Remy Renaud gets lost in the Everglades, she doesn't expect to find a body dump—and herself on the Endangered Species list. However, when a modern day warrior steps in to protect her, she is forced to trust a man she doesn't know. A man she could come to love. A man she could lose if a killer has his way.
Micah Rivera agrees to hide Remy, but when the FBI decides to use her as bait to catch the killers, he and his team spring into action to keep her out of harm’s way. Now with both law enforcement and murderers on their trail, Micah is left in an untenable position—keep his team safe and Remy out of trouble without losing his heart to the woman he has sworn to protect.
As Remy and Micah join forces, one thing becomes clear. To survive, they must defeat the enemy at his own game.
Book Genre: romantic suspense
Series Name: Black Force Renegades Series
(This is a novella, the first story in the series)
Publisher: The Wild Rose Press
When undercover cop Natasha Roberts sets out to find her missing brother, the trail leads to a biker bar where one false move will get her killed. Taking a job as bartender at Trailblazer's, she's in over her head almost before she begins.
Skip McQuade, a man Natasha doesn't know is a cop, isn't impressed. But when orders from his CO come down, he's forced to stick to her like Velcro in order to find out what she's up to. It doesn't take him long to realize the odds are stacked against her. Convincing her to become his partner is hard work, but when she finally agrees, he wastes no time getting in on the search.
Together they continue the hunt while fighting the passion between them. Will they find her brother and stop a killer in time?
About the Author
Kallie Lane writes suspenseful romantic fiction with a touch of humor to lighten the dark moments. She understands the rough edges of alpha males and loves to write about them, helping them find the women who complete them in every way that matters. She excels at hard hitting action and complex relationships that end with the heroine and hero building a life together.
Kallie loves to write stories with realistic characters, intricate plots, and happy endings. With her Shadow Soldier series, she has had the pleasure of meeting many military men who fit the bill. And while she loves doing extensive research, many of the locations and perils in her stories stem from personal experience. The isolated cottage in Dark Abandon is her own, her boating disasters serving as inspiration for her heroine's. Her recent release, Reckless Abandon, takes place at a rodeo where she spent much of her time. She was thrilled when the novel was rated Best Book by Long and Short Reviews.
Kallie lives in Canada, was born and raised there, and loves winter in the cool blue North. Ever the optimist, she claims a hot toddy by the fire can work wonders after dragging oneself through snowdrifts and -45C degree temperatures. The perfect setting for hatching romantic suspense novels.
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