How would you describe yourself using only five words?
Creative, playful, patriotic, intellectual, and hopelessly romantic
If you could live anywhere in the world, where would it be?
How do you get yourself in the mood to write?
Hate to say it … I’m always in the mood. Scenes play out in my head morning to night.
Where do you find the inspirations for your stories?
My inspiration mainly comes from inside. I’ve lived an interesting life full of adventure, adversity, and happiness, so it flows. History inspires me, too. I love warrior tales—freedom fighters and underdogs. I admire the great empires that have come and gone throughout history. How did they rise to power, and more importantly, what made them crumble?
Do you have a book that was easiest to write or one that was the hardest?
Blind Allegiance is my first novel, so I think it qualifies as the hardest. You put so much energy into the first and don’t really know where it’s going. I found myself questioning my creative ability. Is my writing good enough or who would want to read this? Finding critique partners willing to be as brutally honest as you need is a challenge. I remember asking my favorite one to please spare me any further embarrassment by simply telling me if I had enough talent to keep writing. That deserved a kick in the pants. We learn as we go.
If you could collaborate with one author who would it be?
What is coming up from you in 2013? Anything you want to tease us with?
My debut novel Blind Allegiance launched June 26, 2013. That’s a big thing for me. Book 2 of the Blind series, Blind Mercy, will likely release by the end of the year. Here’s a sneak peek…
“I have a feeling,” he started as he looked down at her from the edge of the pool, “that there’s something not quite right between us.”
She laughed erratically. “Only a feeling? I should think it would be clear how I feel about being banished to the far reaches of your castle.” She crossed her arms over her heavy breasts.
Shirtless and shoeless, her eyes swept nervously over his sculpted chest. So undeniably appealing, yet so appalling at the same time.
“Your eyes betray you,” he purred.
“Why are you here?”
“To join you...” Without giving her a chance to counter, he unlaced his breeches.
She squealed. Horrified by the prospect of seeing him naked again, she covered her eyes with her hands.
“Not the sound most women make when I disrobe.” She resented his deep bellied laughter.
“You lack common decency, sir.” She stole another look. Much to her relief, he wore a loin cloth.
He dove off the rocks and crossed swiftly to the opposite side of the spring. Leaning carelessly against the wall, he rested his long arms on the narrow shelf behind him. She marveled at his invulnerability.
“Why so nervous?” he asked.
“I’m not,” she lied. “I just don’t like you being here with me.”
He grinned. “I can be anything you want me to be. The rogue or the inexperienced boy—a madman or prince—a dying soldier begging for a last taste of passion or a merciless Viking claiming what rightly belongs to him.” He ran a large hand through the tangle of wet hair on his head.
Her first impulse, run away. He had spoken too calmly while describing his Viking self.
When you begin your stories, do you go with the flow, or go with an outline?
I go with the flow. I’m a free spirit and like approaching my stories with as little planning as possible.
Is it hard coming up with titles or characters names?
No, I think I banked with the Blind series. There are so many great combinations for Blind XXX. It just feels right with the Vikings. As for character names, Norse/Scandinavian names are wonderfully linked to where people live, the gods, or human attributes (i.e. Ingemar – of the sea). It’s fun choosing.
Is there any books coming that you are itching to read (either electronic or print) from your favorite authors?
The eighth installment of Diana Gabaldon’s Outlander series. I simply must have it in printed form. Overall, I’m a random reader. I enjoy exploring the shelves in the bookstore without a checklist. I’m more disciplined with nonfiction.
If you were to replenish your cabinets with one junk food, what would it be?
Pepperidge Farm cheddar cheese goldfish crackers
Is music a factor for you while you are writing? Do certain songs put you in the right frame of mind to write certain stories?
I love music. I worked as a D.J. for many years before I went to college. Rock and roll… Led Zeppelin, anything from Physical Graffiti (I really like In the Light). For the grittier side, Tool and Disturbed. All music moves me, so I’m open to any sound at any time.
What do you feel is the most important thing that a first-time author should know?
What do you feel is the most important thing that a first-time author should know?
Don’t worry so much about what other people are doing. I’m not saying completely disregard what’s popular, but write what feels natural. There’s nothing worse than forced words. People can sense it.
About Blind Allegiance
It’s a risk of a lifetime loving a man you’re supposed to hate…
Betrayed by a brother she hardly trusted before the bloodthirsty Viking, Jarl Randvior Sigurdsson, attacks her home, Noelle Sinclair is conveniently bartered as a means to save her cowardly sibling’s skin. Forced to leave her homeland and accompany the petulant Viking to the untamed wilderness of central
, Noelle is ever-aware of the burgeoning dangers around
her—including her weakening resolve to resist Randvior. Norway
Should Noelle surrender to his resplendent charms and seduction, or fight with every ounce of strength she possesses to get home?
Dark clouds always gathered in Noelle Sinclair’s dreams. Hundreds of nightmares had played out in her mind since childhood. Why should tonight be any different?
The smell of burning wood invaded her sleep. Smoke snatched her breath and she tried to purge her lungs by taking deep breaths. She ran for the great hall and all she could see were scorched rafters and floorboards. Guards scrambled to the battlements, while women and children fled the castle. She searched for her sisters among the people migrating outside ...
Noelle’s eyes snapped open at the sound of dire warning. By God, this was no dream! She flung blankets aside and rolled over, shook her older sister awake, and jumped out of bed.
“What’s wrong?” Margaret asked sleepily.
“The castle’s on fire. Get up, now!”
Margaret scurried from bed and ran with Noelle to the windows overlooking the eastern edge of the castle. Through the swirling fog, Noelle could make out a tangle of men with torches and weapons in the courtyard below. She further scanned the shoreline where the
North Sea pounded against the rocks and dunes. The castle was under
siege and poorly defended. Most of the soldiers and her father were in , leaving only her brother and a skeleton army behind. Ireland
Her gaze still locked on the beach, Noelle caught sight of three, silvery-white longships anchored beyond the walls. Their blood-red sails snapped in the wind. She stared in horror as the pattern on the sails came into focus—the shape of a dragon.
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Violetta Rand holds a bachelor's degree in Environmental Policy and a master's degree in Environmental Management. Serving as an environmental scientist in the state of
for over seven years, she enjoys the privilege of traveling
to remote places few people have the opportunity to see. Alaska
Violetta has been "in love" with writing since childhood. Struck with an entrepreneurial spirit at a young age, at five, she wrote short stories illustrated by her best friend and sold them in her neighborhood. The only thing she loves more than writing is her wonderful relationship with her husband, Jeff. She enjoys outdoor activities, reading whatever she can get her hands on, music, and losing herself in the ancient worlds she enjoys bringing to life in the pages of her stories.