Thanks for stopping by to talk a little about your writing! Let's jump right in. When did you begin writing and why?
I read my first romance book when I was 12 after I snuck a Harlequin paperback out of my mom’s bedroom. I couldn’t stop thinking about it, and I wanted to create my own story about two people having an adventure and falling in love. I wrote with pencil in a spiral-bound notebook and finished that 200-plus page story in about six months.
I published my first book when I was 26, and Lyrical Embrace is now my eleventh book to date. I have about ten more manuscripts on my computer waiting to see the light of day.
Do you have a favorite genre? Is it the same genre you prefer to write?
Paranormal romance and romantic suspense are tied as my all-time favorite sub-genre of romance. Lately, I’ve been writing RS books, but my backlist includes historical, western, contemporary, time travel, and holiday-themed romances. The paranormal books I’ve written haven’t been published yet, but I hope to change that soon.
Do certain themes and ideas tend to capture your writer’s imagination and fascinate you?
I’m very open to what I read and write (I like basically everything), but I do prefer certain tropes like second chances and damaged heroes.
How do you balance long-term thinking vs. being nimble in today's market?
The publishing world is in an uproar, and I doubt it will smooth out anytime soon. You got to be flexible and roll with the punches since not every promotional opportunity will work for every author. A lot of that deals with luck, how much money you spend in order to spread the word about your book, and/or your professional connections.
To be successful, you need to think ahead, know your audience, and market your book to the people who read in your genre. A reader who loves paranormal romance might not be interested in a Regency romance novel, and vise-versa. You gotta do a ton of promoting, whether you pick the free options or the ones that cost a fee. Most publishers offer little assistance, so the responsibility falls to the author. It can be a nightmare, but it’s something authors have to deal with and struggle through. After all, if the reader doesn’t know your name, he or she won’t buy your book.
How do you find readers in today's market?
Social media, blogging, interviews, magazine ads, contests/giveaways, and swag are great marketing tools and ways to draw in readers.
Do you come up with the hook first, or do you create characters first and then dig through until you find a hook?
I always come up with a hook and overall plot before I develop characters and start building my world.
How do you create your characters?
A spark of an idea usually blossoms very quickly into a well-rounded character, especially if I’m developing the hero or heroine. I picture myself in the character’s shoes, think about what I would (or wouldn’t) do in whatever situation I’m putting the character in, and my imagination just flows. Sometimes, my characters take over and twist my ideas into something new and different, taking the story in another direction.
What's on the top of your TBR pile right now?
I’ve read a few books in Maggie Shayne’s Wings in the Night series and I really want to read more. However, I’m busy writing and editing at the moment, so I have to wait a few months before I can take a break and do some reading. I have about 400 hundred or so print books in my office and probably around 1000 ebooks on my Kindle and computer, so my TBR list is swamped.
Tell me a little about the characters in Lyrical Embrace.
Erica Timberly was in a bad relationship and finally found the courage and the means to break free. I think a lot of readers can sympathize with her, especially those who have experienced abuse and neglect from someone claiming to love them.
Dylan Haynes has retired from the New York music scene and now teaches kids how to play instruments. He’s gotten his life back together after all the drama of being a semi-star, and he and Erica have an instant connection.
Despite the dark undertones, this story is fun, uplifting, and hot. The characters are real and flawed. I really enjoyed writing it, and I hope readers will love it.
Where’s the story set? How much influence did the setting have on the atmosphere/characters/development of the story?
Lyrical Embrace, book four in the Deerbourne Inn series, is a multi-author collaboration of novellas set in the small fictional town of Willow Springs, Vermont. I love small town romances, especially ones with an edge and a little bit of danger weaved in. When plotting this story, I first pictured a young woman running away from the big city to escape her abusive boyfriend. She winds up in the middle of nowhere and finds not only a new romance, but acceptance among the townspeople.
How often does your muse distract you from day to day minutiae?
When I’m not writing, I’m usually plotting in my head and thinking about my current or future WIPs. So yes, my muse distracts me all the time.
What do readers have to look forward to in the future from you?
The second installment in the Arresting Onyx series should hopefully be out in early 2020. Arresting Jeremiah follows hardnosed parole officer Jim Borden and his obsession Calista Barlow as they stick their noses where they don’t belong and fall deep into the trouble with the criminal organization known as Onyx. This sexy, dirty-talking romantic suspense series spans five books with a standalone HEA for each rough-and-tumble hero and their spunky heroines. The first book is already published.
I’m editing a book in the House of Darkain series, an on-going set of unpublished vampire novels. I’m seeking representation for the series, and book one is now in the hands of agents and hopefully out of the slush pile.
Series: Deerbourne Inn (book 4)
Publisher: The Wild Rose Press
Genre: Romantic Suspense
Out-of-work violinist Erica Timberly decides enough is enough. She leaves her abusive boyfriend and flees the big city, but then her car breaks down in the middle of the night. Though wary of men, she accepts help from Dylan Haynes, a stranger driving by on the road, and soon recognizes him as the sexy former drummer of her favorite indie rock band. Maybe, just maybe, her run of bad luck is finally turning around.
Music teacher Dylan Haynes knows Erica is in trouble, and her black eye is only the first clue. The stubborn yet vulnerable woman needs a friend, but he’s determined to give her everything she deserves.
Will Erica listen to the music in her heart and trust Dylan, or will her past always threaten her future?
Dylan deepened the kiss and lightly tugged on her bottom lip. Tears streaked his flushed cheeks as he smiled at her. “I’m so grateful I found you, baby. I heard you screaming. When I saw that bastard press a gun to your head, my heart nearly exploded. I thought I might lose you. I promise you, Erica, I will never control you as Phil did. You will always have the ability to choose. I just want to make you happy.”
She gripped his hand and brushed her lips across his calloused knuckles. “I know. You do make me happy. You took a bullet for me.” A sob constricted her throat, but she pushed it down.
A blast of noise rent the air. Fireworks filled the sky, visible in the alley from the narrow stretch of space between the buildings.
Erica loved the bright colors and designs, but hardly cared about watching the spectacle. She dropped her gaze back to Dylan.
A grin spread across his face. “It’s been one wild Fourth of July. Why don’t we do something more low-key next year? How about no guns and crazy exes? Just us, the creek, and a bottle of wine. Clothing optional.”
She laughed softly, amazed he could make light of the situation. “That sounds perfect. Absolutely perfect.”
Amazon – https://amzn.to/2ChIhNT
Books2Read – http://books2read.com/u/m0MYaV
About the Author
Amber Daulton is the author of the romantic-suspense series Arresting Onyx and several standalone novellas. Her books are published through The Wild Rose Press and Books to Go Now, and are available in ebook, print on demand, audio, and foreign language formats.
Amber lives in North Carolina with her husband and four demanding cats. Feel free to visit her at http://www.amberdaultonauthor.blogspot.com.
Social Media Links
Facebook Author Page – www.facebook.com/amber.daulton.author
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The Wild Rose Press – https://www.thewildrosepress.com/authors/amber-daulton