October 31, 2014

Author Interview with Quanie Miller

When I read the first comment about being Blitzed I was surprised! Me, really?! WOOT! WOOT! :D

Today I have the wonderful Quanie Miller on Write with Fey. She recently came out with her new paranormal novel, The New Mrs. Collins. And on top of that she's a new mommy! Congratulations, Quanie, on your bundle of joy and your book! 

Now let's get started.

Please tell us about your current release, Quanie.

My novel is called The New Mrs. Collins. It’s a paranormal novel set in Louisiana about this woman who suspects that there’s something otherworldly about her son’s new stepmother. She goes digging for answers and discovers too late that some secrets are better left buried. 

Book Blurb:

In the small town of Carolville, Louisiana, no one knows that Adira Collins inherited mystic powers from her great grandmother. All they know is that she’s beautiful, poised, graceful, and ruthless—especially when it comes to love. And no one knows that more than Leena Williams, who was all set to marry the man of her dreams until Adira swooped into town and stole the man’s heart.

Being left at the altar is bad enough, but Leena and her ex share custody of their son, so she has to see the new Mrs. Collins on a regular basis. And it burns every time she does. But soon, Leena starts to suspect that there is more to Adira Collins than meets the eye. And it’s not because she owns some kinky lingerie shop or allegedly insulted the pastor’s wife—it’s the strange way she can make a door close without touching it, or take one look at something and make it drop dead at her feet.

Leena starts digging for answers and soon discovers that, unlike her public persona, Adira’s true nature is somewhere on the other side of grace. She also learns, a little too late, that some secrets are better left buried. 

Title: The New Mrs. Collins
Author: Quanie Miller
Genre: Paranormal
Release Date: October 13, 2014


1.    What inspired you to write this book?

I got this image in my head of a woman standing next to a lake ringing out a towel. There was just something about her that screamed mystery, so I put her on the page to find out!

2. And it's a good thing you did! Why did you choose the setting for The New Mrs. Collins?

     I'm from a small Louisiana town so it was natural for me to set The New Mrs. Collins in a similar setting. 

3. I love small towns as book settings! What would men find irresistible about your heroine?

     I think men would find Leena beautiful but not only that, she is very matter of fact. She doesn’t play coy and lets you know exactly how she feels. Plus, she can bake a sweet potato pie that’ll bring you to your knees! And who can resist a good pie?.  

4. Not I! Which actors would play your heroine in a movie?

     I get this question a lot and I’d have to say Taraji Henson or Jill Scott. Two of my absolute faves!

5. What would we find in your heroine’s purse if we went snooping?

    You’d most likely find a picture of her over active six year old son, Corie.

6.    What are a few things we would find in or on your desk?

I’m writing this as I look at my desk: a pacifier, a gift bag, a wine glass, an exercise DVD, a flash drive, a pen, a Chick Filet coupon for free coffee, an old library card, and a penny.

7.     A pacifier. I love that! How old were you when you read your first paranormal book? What was it?

Oh, Goodness! I was probably around ten or eleven (can’t say for certain), and it was probably something by R.L. Stine.

8.     Share three random facts about you.

1. I’m a reality TV show junky.
2. I just got a smart phone two weeks ago. Before that, when I’d pull out my old dinosaur of a phone, people would go, “Wow!” and stare at it in amazement.
3. I’m probably the only person on the planet who trips getting inside of her own car!

9.     I still have a dinosaur phone! What lessons did you learn early in your writing career?

I learned that you should get as much feedback on your work as possible so that you can learn what you do well and hone that.

10.  Share your advice to new writers.

Hone your craft, find your voice, and believe in yourself.

Author Bio:

Quanie Miller grew up in New Iberia, Louisiana. She fell in love with reading at an early age and spent most of her time at the Iberia Parish Library discovering authors like R.L. Stine and Christopher Pike (she was often found walking back home from the library with a stack of books that went up to her chin). She holds degrees from Louisiana State University and San Jose State University. She has been the recipient of the James Phelan Literary Award, the Louis King Thore Scholarship, the BEA Student Scriptwriting Award, and the Vicki Hudson Emerging Writing Prize. She is the author of The New Mrs. Collins, a southern paranormal novel, and It Ain't Easy Being Jazzy, a romantic comedy. She lives in South Carolina with her husband and is currently, as always, working on another novel. To find out more about Quanie and her works in progress visit quanietalkswriting.com.

Twitter: @quaniemiller
Email: quanie@quanietalkswriting.com

Thank you for telling us all about your fabulous new book, Quanie! I for one can't wait to read it!

Please leave Quanie (and her baby girl) some love! :)


October 28, 2014

Be Specific in Your Writing

Being specific is important to help your readers understand what is going on and what you’re trying to tell them.

You can be more specific by cutting out these phrases at the beginning of sentences:

·         There was/were (For past tense.)
·         There is/are (For present tense.)
·         It was

Example: There was a loud bang at her front door that made her jump.
Better: A loud bang at her front door made her jump.

Example: There is nothing better than a cold coke on a hot summer day.
Better: Nothing is better than a cold coke on a hot summer day.

Image by Chrys Fey.

To rewrite a sentence that starts with “it,” you need to figure out what “it” refers to. Whatever that is needs to be replaced by “it.”

Example: “It was a dark and stormy night.”
Better: The night was dark and stormy.

I sometimes start sentences with “it was” if the previous sentence states what I’m referring to by “it.” But I try not to do this very often.

SHARE: Your tips for being more specific.

October 24, 2014

Author Interview with Sandra Dailey

I am happy to introduce to you another author from The Wild Rose Press, and one from my line...Crimson Rose. She is a talented writer with a great sense of humor. Please help me to welcome Sandra Dailey, the author of Common Enemy


Hi Chrys! Thanks for inviting me to your blog. It’s nice to get out of the cave and see sunlight now and then.

I'm glad you could be here. Tell us about your current release.

I’d love to. This is the blurb for COMMON ENEMY:

Jordan Holbrook is the single mother of a five-year-old daughter. She’s just inherited her Grandmother’s house in South Florida where she’s hiding from an abusive ex-husband who’s been released from prison early. A new man in her life isn't part of her plans.

Connor McCrae is a handyman who lives out of his van. He walked away from a privileged life and loving family after being badly scarred in a vicious attack. He doesn't believe a woman’s love is in the cards for him.

What brings them together is a rundown house, a mutual attraction, and a Common Enemy.

Bobby Ray Butler is cutting a path of murder and mayhem through south Florida in his quest for vengeance. His sights are set on his ex-wife and anyone who gets in his way.

Genre: Romantic-Suspense
Length: 272 pages
Publisher: The Wild Rose Press
Release Date: February 22nd, 2014

Also available in print!

1. I love how the man's face on the cover blends into the background. Is this book part of a series?

I wouldn’t call it a series, but I am working on a sequel called CLOSE ENEMY. The heroes of each book are twin brothers.

2. How did you pick the title for your book?

When Connor and Jordan first meet, they’re complete opposites in every way except the enemy they have in common.

3. Why did you choose the setting for COMMON ENEMY?

I’ve lived in various parts of Florida most of my life. The most dangerous place I know is in the Everglades. I could tell you stories that would curl your hair about things that have happened there. People living in the surrounding cities don’t have any idea. I decided Bobby Ray would use that setting during some of the time he stalked his pray. The fictional town of Mayville is based on a small town I lived in on the northern border of the glades.

4. I've lived in Florida most of my life, but I've never been to the Everglades. How did you come up with the names for your hero and heroine?

I have a funny habit of giving all my characters Irish names. I’m also attracted to names beginning with C. I often have to go back and change several names. I believe I got Jordan’s name from a friend of my granddaughter. Bobby Ray uses two names because that’s what serial killers do. Haven’t you noticed?

5. Oh, I have! What would women find irresistible about your hero?

Women are shocked and sometimes put-off by Connor’s scars. Jordan was immediately attracted to his inner beauty; integrity, kindness, generosity, and strong work ethic. If you scratched the Mona Lisa the painting would be ruined but she’d still be Mona.

6. What are a few things we would find in or on your desk?

The usual; a full coffee mug, notebook, pens, tissues, lotion, incense, and a set of women’s western spurs.

7. Is there a teacher (or teachers) you would like to personally thank for his/her influence?

Yes there is, Mrs. English with the big black hair and thick glasses. She said I was a no-good menace to society who would never do anything with my life and would probably die young from a drug overdose.

“Here I am, Mrs. English, a soon-to-be great-grandmother who still doesn’t do drugs. You gave me the incentive to go for gold no matter what anyone said.”

8. I'm sure glad I didn't have her as a teacher! If you could give your book to anyone in the world to read (dead or alive) who would it be and why?

Mrs. English, of course. Do you need to ask why?

9. You're right, Sandra, I don't need to ask why, but I will ask you to share three random facts about yourself.

1.    I’m the only writer I know who is dyslexic and doesn’t know how to type.
2.    I have a Facebook account and I don’t even like cats.
3.    I have three secret boards on Pinterest of sexy, hot guys. I titled them: makeup, recipes and fashion to keep the Pinterest people off my back.

10. You're a riot! Now please share your advice to new writers.

Study, research, and learn everything you can about your craft. Also, keep notes as you go. You never know when a person or place is going to show up in your story again.

A little more about me:

Sandra Dailey lives in North Florida with her husband and house plants. She has four children, ten grandchildren with two more on the way, and a goldfish named Clementine. She has a passion for needle crafts, reading and writing. Her addictions are chocolate, coffee, and football. She loves to hear from fellow readers and writers. Her first two books, The Chief’s Proposal and Twice the Trouble are contemporary romances and also available in eBook and print. She is currently hard at work on Close Enemy and a couple other surprises.


Thank you for letting me interview you, Sandra. You thoroughly entertained me!

Please, leave Sandra comments and love. :)

October 21, 2014

Writing About: Vampires

In my (unpublished) supernatural-thriller series, some of my characters are actually vampires. When I was writing about them, Twilight was just getting big. For the longest time I battled with the idea of changing my story and eliminating the vampire angle completely. But doing that would mean I’d have to alter all the other stories, too. I eventually decided to keep the vampires, because I figured my books would be published well after the Twilight hype is over. Plus, my vampires are vastly different from Stephenie Meyer’s vampires. I went so far as to invent my own creation story for vampires. As a mythology buff, that was a lot of fun!
TIP #1: Study vampire lore to make characters vampire lovers will appreciate. But that doesn’t mean you can’t get creative.
Check out this Wikipedia list to compare notes and help you to decide what you want to do with your vampires.

Now here are 15 things to consider when you create vampire characters:

1.    Name

Come up with unique names for your vampires to make them stand out from any human characters you might have in your story. You don’t have to think extreme, but do better than Bob. Bob would be a sad vampire.

2.    Age

What age do your vampires look? (This will be whatever age they were bitten.) And how old are they really? Vampires are immortal, so a vampire that looks to be 21 years old can actually be 210 years old.

3.    Appearance

Give your vampire classic vampire traits such as pale skin. (Even a vampire with a dark complexion can still appear paler than normal. After all, a vampire is the living dead, and a person’s skin color changes with death.) You can also play with other characteristics of corpses such as blue lips and glazed eyes. If they live in the real world, though, let them wear disguises (sunglasses, long sleeves) so their differences can’t be noticed. And don’t forget the fangs!

Image by Chrys Fey.

4.    Feeding

A vampire isn’t a vampire unless it drinks blood. Don’t neglect this aspect. Even a vampire who refuses to attack and kill humans still needs to get blood from somewhere whether its animals like rats and pigs, or by stealing from blood banks. You can also show your vampire eating real food.

5.    Sleep

Vampires don’t come out during the day. In vampire lore, vampires are said to sleep during the day and wake as the sun goes down. At night, they prowl and “live.” If they do come out during the day, it would be when the sun’s rays are safe behind a thick layer of clouds, or with the help of magic.

6.    Lust

Vampires have many cravings from blood to sex. Make your vampires sensual and give them the opportunity to enjoy many pleasures.

7.    Weaknesses

All characters, even immortal ones, should have weaknesses. The biggest weakness for a vampire is the sun. When the sun’s rays touch them, they burn. Other weaknesses tend to be fire, and according to lore, stakes. A weakness can even be a person such as a parent, sibling, or lover.

8.    Abilities

Vampires inherit abilities from speed and agility to super hearing and vision. Take advantage of these whenever you can.

9.    Personality

Common characteristics a vampire can have are fearlessness and anger. He/she can be extra indulgent, dark and mysterious. But you can always change things up and create a happy, funny vampire. That’ll be different!

10. Transformation

How was your vampire turned? Who bit him/her to initiate the change? These are two very important questions you need to answer and tell your readers.

5 Extra Things to Consider:

·         Where does your vampire live?

·         Is your vampire part of a clan? (Is he/she a leader, King/Queen, or a loner?)

·         What does your vampire do? (Is he/she a hunter? Does he/she work at night for a company, or live freely with no binds?

·         What was your vampire before he/she was turned? (A mother/father? What was his/her job as a human?)

·         Does he/she have a love interest? (This would be a major part of the plot.)

TIP #2: Read Dracula by Bram Stocker and other vampire books by Anne Rice, Anita Blake, and J.R Ward. Also, watch movies like Queen of the Damned, Underworld, and Daybreakers. 
TIP #3: Check out Natasha Duncan’s blog for her April A to Z Challenge, which was dedicated to vampires. You’ll learn so much from her posts. 

QUESTION: If you’re a vampire fan, who writes your favorite vampire books?

October 20, 2014

My Bucket List / Blog Hop

Sherry Ellis at Mama Diaries and Susanne Drazic at Putting Words Down on Paper are co-hosting this fun blog hop to help us remember what's important in life, and to consider what we want to see or do before we "kick the bucket." Creating a bucket list is a great way to motivate us to accomplish our goals before we die. Writing our dreams down also helps us to stay focused.

My Bucket List:

1.    Get an agent and publisher for my supernatural-thriller series.

2.    Adopt a baby girl. (Ever since I was a kid, I have dreamed of adopting.)

3. Adopt a turkey. Click here for more details.

4.    Go to Ireland.

5.    Get married in the Fall.

6.    Go to a Thirty Seconds to Mars concert.

7. Donate to St. Judes Children's Hospital.

8.    Have my lyrics made into songs. (I write lyrics but I can’t create music or sing, so having my lyrics come to life—maybe by one of my favorite singers/bands—would be a dream come true!)

9.    Make my own perfume. (I actually know what scents I want to use, the bottle design, and the name. I dream big! *wink*)

10.    Go to a fashion show in Paris. (I love fashion and even design dresses.)

11.    Go to a Nora Roberts/J.D. Robb book signing.

12. See the Nutcracker ballet.

13. Make my own tea. (I love tea!)

14. See Celtic Woman perform.

15. Plant a garden. (I currently live in an apartment.)

16. Take my mom to Key West. (She’s wanted to go there for years.)

17. Take my nephews to Disney World and Sea World.

QUESTIONS: What's on your bucket list?

Have you done anything on my bucket list?

October 17, 2014

Author Interview with Veronica Lynch

Please welcome Veronica Lynch (aka Kathy Cottrell) to Write with Fey as she tells us about her new release, Caper Magic, an intriguing short story with a stunning cover.

Veronica, tell us about your current release.

Caper Magic is part of Hauntings in the Garden series out of the Wild Rose Press, due for digital release on October 27th, with a print date TBA. It is about Nick Forrester, chief investigator for a high-powered law firm on the trail of a woman who has taken her minor children in violation of a court order. It is feared she will flee to Canada with them. Annunciata Doyle runs one of the local stations on the Underground Railroad, helping women and children who have nowhere else to turn. 

Genre: Romance
Length: 48 pages
Publisher: The Wild Rose Press
Release Date: October 27th, 2014



1.    Is this book part of a series?

Actually, this will be the first in a series set in the fictional town of Cape Brendan, a medium size tourist area on the eastern most edge of Lake Ontario where it bleeds into the Saint Lawrence River in northern New York State.

2.    I love a good series! Why did you choose this setting for Caper Magic?

For the past several years the hubs and I had vacationed in the Saint Lawrence area, picking a different spot  each year. Two criteria governed the choice [not counting cost]: good fishing for him, peace and quiet for me. I discovered Cape Vincent, a lovely small town known for its historic connections to the French and Indian War and later, the War of 1812. It was instant infatuation. From the first I knew I'd have to set at least one book in this area.

3.    Did you do special research for Caper Magic?

Cape Vincent [in the book it's known as Cape Brendan] has a ferry which runs several times a day back and forth to Canada. I chose this as the mechanism to transport the woman and her kids to safety. To do that, I researched how to disappear as well as interviewing the Immigration officials who run the ferry service. They gave me some great advice.

4.  Research is always important. How did you come up with the names for your hero and heroine?

     I knew the heroine had to be Irish, with a thick brogue, with a history of being raised in one of the Magdelene laundries. The name Annunciata Doyle came easy because I wanted to call her Nunie. Nick Forrester arrived out of the blue and stuck with me. It wasn't until later, after I put the names together—Nick and Nunie—that I cringed. Right out of a Frankie and Annette movie, but it was too late.

5.  Nick and Nunie...that's cute! Which actors would play your hero and heroine in a movie?

     Anthony Denison [The Closer and Major Crimes] and Minnie Driver [About a Boy and The Riches].

6.     I love Minnie Driver! How old were you when you read your first romance book?

It was 1983 so I would have been in my middle 30's. Working the night shift in the Surgical Intensive Care Unit put me at two ends of the emotional spectrum: scared spitless a patient might crash versus fighting desperately to stay awake. One night I discovered a grocery bag filled with used Harlequin-Silhouettes bearing a sign “free for the taking” and picked one by Billie Douglas. I never forgot it. In fact, I still have it on a shelf in my office. 

7.     If you could give your book to anyone in the world to read (dead or alive) who would it be and why?

My father. Because he'd get a kick out of Nunie's voice and for the pen name I chose. Veronica Lynch was a lifelong friend of him and his siblings. All of them spoke of her with great respect and affection.

8.  I love that you revealed how you got your pen name! Have you ever experienced something unusual that influenced a story?

     Part of my job as director of a victim advocacy agency included supervising interns who were criminal justice majors. One of the perks was free tuition for one course each semester. Over the years the interns raved about a course titled Terrorism and Hostage Taking. Part of the course involved being taken hostage by officers from the county sheriff's hostage negotiation team. It changed my life.

9.  That sounds fascinating...and scary! What lessons did you learn early on in your writing career?

     To listen to my gut, then my heart.


Writing under the names Kat Henry Doran and Veronica Lynch, author Kathy Cottrell uses her experience as a nurse, victim advocate and insurance investigator for background in her award winning novels and novellas. Her stories are set in her favorite places to visit: the Catskill and Adirondack Mountains as well as the Saint Lawrence River in the historic Thousand Islands region of Upstate and Northern New York State.

When not writing, or chasing grandchildren, Kathy spends her time designing and making tote bags and aprons to custom order.

I love to hear from readers who can reach me at: WildWomenAuthors@yahoo.com.


Thank you so much for being my guest, Veronica (Kathy), and for sharing such interesting tid bits about yourself and your book!

Please leave a comment for Veronica! :)