29 January, 2013

#SpecialFeature :: #AuthorInterview - Cate Beauman

Now Presenting:
*** SPECIAL FEATURE - January'13 ***

A Short Recap of the Month:
1st January : Author Bio & Book List
8th January : Spotlight on Morgan’s Hunter (Story, Playlist, Funfacts and Reviews)
15th January : Spotlight on Falling for Sarah (Story, Playlist, Funfacts and Reviews)
22nd January : Spotlight on Hailey's Truth (Story, Playlist, Funfacts and Reviews)

Now, onto The Interview!
Thank you Ms.Beauman for agreeing to do this @b00k r3vi3ws. Hope you are all settled and comfy? Okay then…
When did you first realize that you wanted to tell stories to the world? What was your first step towards becoming an author?
I think there were a lot of little things that brought me to my moment of realization. For years I knew something was missing in my life. I didn’t have any major passions. I love being a wife and mom; I enjoy working with children, but I never had anything that ‘filled me up’ personally.  I always felt like there was something more I wanted to do but had no clue what it was.  After my family and I relocated from the Northeast to the South, my new path started to unfold. We were hundreds of miles from family and friends and the comforts of home. I’d accepted a job that I truly despised and quit promptly afterward. 
The economy in the States isn’t great. My husband and I had pretty much resigned ourselves to being broke as a one-income family until I could secure new employment. After the kids would leave for school each day, I would either paint a room in our new home or read a Nora Roberts novel and gorge myself on chocolates. I was miserable!  
One evening, out of nowhere, after finishing the novel I had been reading, I had this epiphany. I decided right then and there that I was going to write a book of my own. I scribbled down some basic ideas and the next day, I got to work. Weeks later, I had a rough draft—and I do mean rough draft!  I joined a critiquing site, Critique Circle, where I learned so many wonderful things about the craft of telling a good story and met some really great writing friends.  That’s how my career began. Two years and a few months later, I’m a best selling author! Who knew?

Do you outline your books or just start writing? 
I’m definitely not a rigid writer, but I do use a vague outline for my first drafts. I find that having a good grasp of the main conflicts and detailed character sketches more helpful than planning everything out step by step. The details come together as I get to know my characters better.  By the second draft I know just what needs to be revised and go from there.

Research! You must have done a lot of research for your books, especially Hailey’s truth. Tell us about it.
Research is a HUGE part of storytelling.  It’s impossible to bring characters and situations to life if you don’t know what you’re talking about.  I actually LOVE to research.  It’s such an exciting way to learn new things.  I pretty much follow the same research routine before I begin each novel.  After I figure out what I want the story to be about, I make a list of topics I don’t know enough about, which often leads to MORE topics I didn’t realize I didn’t know anything about and get to work. I watch documentaries and YouTube, read books and articles, do personal interviews, access pictures via Google Images, and keep my eyes open for related topics in the news.  

Why did you choose to have a feisty Morgan & equally strong-willed Hunter fall in love? 
Often times when I read a book I notice that the hero and heroine have personalities that compliment each other well.  True, they have their conflicts, but at the end of the day, they mesh. I really wanted to mixt that up with Morgan and Hunter. The main characters of Morgan’s Hunter definitely do NOT complement one another—at least not right away.  When Morgan and Hunter first meet, they dislike each other intensely, yet they are drawn to one another despite their constant arguing and sniping.  Strong chemistry and attraction often create powerful emotion. There’s no shortage of heat between these two. Eventually they figure things out in their own way, but they’ll always have sparks.  

If you had a chance to change Ethan & Sarah’s story, would you ever consider making Sarah take that first step?
No! Ethan and Sarah’s story wouldn’t be the same with such a huge change. Sarah loved her husband deeply. Part of her conflict is coming to grips with his death and moving on with life. Ethan too struggles with the guilt of loving a woman he thinks he has no right to.  Both of those scenarios work best if Ethan makes the first move in changing their relationship. 

What is the one thing about Austin & Hailey’s relationship that never made it into the book?
I really thought about this question for quite some time and the simple answer is nothing was left off the pages.  Hailey and Austin are well-developed characters chalked full of beautiful flaws.  Hailey tends to be sweet and naïve to the point that she finds herself in danger, and Austin wants to fix everything in Hailey’s life by cushioning her from the truth, which isn’t necessarily the right answer.  At times readers want to hug these two and at others give them a good smack.  I think great characters possess a fair share of positive and negative qualities we can all relate to.   

I hear that you are working on the fourth novel in the Series called Forever Alexa. Care to give us a Teaser?
I’m excited to report that Forever Alexa will be available for release this May. If you’ve read Hailey’s Truth, you already know Jackson Matthews, Ethan Cooke Security’s gorgeous bodyguard with a great sense of humor. Jackson is in for the surprise of his life when he runs into a blast from his past, Alexa Harris. 
Alexa never thought she would see Jackson again after he broke her heart one long ago night in college, but then her sister, Abby, disappears. Ransom calls and death threats force Alexa to flee her quiet home in Maryland to seek Jackson’s help before her sister is lost forever. Together again, Alexa will be forced to reveal shocking secrets to the man she once loved while they attempt to rescue Abby from a hell neither could have imagined. 

What is the best and worst advice you ever received?
I think the best advice I’ve ever received is to never stop trying.  If you want something bad enough you won’t give up despite the obstacles. Even on my worst days as a writer, I try to remember those simple words and it helps me keep going.
The worst advice… I had an editor tell me that I should give up on writing.  I’m SO glad I didn’t listen. I think three best sellers speak for themselves!

Now time for some fun stuff!
What one quirk or characteristic of yours did you give your character? Who was it?
I had to ask my husband for help with this one because I never set out to intentionally give any of my quirks or characteristics to my characters.  My husband’s simple, yet not so simple answer was that there are bits and pieces of me in all of my characters (except for the seriously disturbed ones!).  Apparently, I’m as stubborn as Morgan, have a strong sense of family like Sarah, and say a lot of the things Hailey does. 

Who is your Celebrity Crush?
This is a hard one.  I LOVE American football!  The New England Patriots are my favorite team.  I think Tom Brady and Wes Welker are pretty darn dreamy!  I also really like Matt Damon!  All three men are fantastic to look at and are very talented professionals. 

One High school ‘awkward’ moment… (and no you cannot pass this one)
My awkward moment didn’t take place in the hallowed halls of my high school.  Mine actually happened on the quarter mile drive to and from the bank to my house.  I had just gotten my driver’s license and I was hot to trot to get out there and spread my new found wings.  My mother had a standard shift vehicle and the clutch was very temperamental. I had driven the car before with just a bit of trouble so I thought I could handle a quick drive to the bank all on my own.  WRONG!  As soon as I turned on the main road, I got nervous and stalled! Of course that made me even more nervous and I stalled a million and a half more times.  That little car bucked and jerked more times than I can count. I sat at an intersection, wasting an entire green light, while people honked!  On my return drive, I didn’t do any better. My neighbors laughed while they watched me try to get back to the driveway! It was SO embarrassing!     

If you were the Casting Director for the Movie Series based on The Bodyguards of LA county, who would you cast for which role?
This question was really hard for me mainly because I can’t stand watching movies based on books.  They’re NEVER as good as the book and the characters never, ever, ever look or reflect the image I have of them in my mind.  I think I’ll leave this question right here because if I start dropping names of who the characters could be in my mind, I’ll sway who they are in the imagination of the readers.   

5 Things on your Bucket List!
Travel to Italy and Greece
Have a house by the ocean
Swim with dolphins 
Make the New York Times Bestseller list
Meet Nora Roberts

Quick Choices:
Pizza or Pasta?  
Pizza with fresh mozzarella and tons of veggies
Mocha or iced tea? 
Iced tea, please—decaffeinated
Hercule Poirot or Ms. Marple? 
Miss Marple. I’ve actually never read an Agatha Christie novel but I’ll always vote for a woman. Girl power! 
Jack Sparrow or Willy Wonka? 
Definitely Jack Sparrow.  Willy Wonka gives me the creeps! 
George Clooney or Brad Pitt? 
Brad Pitt—pre-Angelina Jolie!  

Buy the Books

Stalk the Author

Ms.Beauman has kindly offered to giveaway digital copies of Morgan's Hunter, Falling for Sarah and Haley's Truth to One Lucky Winner! Yes, that's right - all three books will go to one winner! So what are you waiting for? Go enter the rafflecopter below and try your luck!!

The Winner is:
Dione Sage

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