Monday, July 15, 2013

An interview with Author Missy Martine

Today I'm hosting a fellow Siren-Bookstrand author, Missy Martine, who's also giving away a PDF Copy of "Blind Acceptance"--soooooo much fun! You must comment with your email address to be eligible to win, which you're able to do beneath the interview, excerpt, etcetera. Drum roll, please...cue the spotlight...it's Missy Martine taking the stage for "Open Mic Monday!"


Thank you for taking the time to stop by Kisses, Caresses & Whispers in the Night today.  I really appreciate your time.  Can you tell us a little bit about your newest release?

My newest release, “Blind Acceptance”, is the first book in my 12-part series – “The Wind River Pack” It ties in directly with my “Wolfen Heritage” trilogy a couple of years ago.  Now, it’s 25 years later and Alpha Remus’s family is all grown up.  They’re looking for their mates, and fighting an unseen foe that’s eerily similar to a past enemy.  I don’t want to tell you too much, but I can say that all the original characters are back, plus a whole lot of new shapeshifters to catch your attention.

What inspired this novel in particular?
I’ve written in several genres, but I always find myself coming back to my shapeshifters.  The Wolfen Heritage trilogy ended with everyone mated, and beginning to have pups.  They’d thwarted the bad guys, and began to look toward a bright future.  That was great, but I just couldn’t stop thinking about those pups.  What would they be like when they grew up?  They were only 2/3 shifter so there was a possibility that some of them could turn out to be human.  I finally decided that the story needed to move forward and “The Wind River Pack” was born.

Who is your favorite character in this novel and why?
It’s a tie for this book.  First, you have Maddie.  She was always my favorite character in the Wolfen Heritage trilogy.  She had overcome so much pain in her life, only to mature into a beautiful, strong alpha female capable of handling anything thrown her way.  In “Blind Acceptance”, she still the undisputed leader of her family, always knowing what’s best for them, even when they can’t see it themselves.

In “Blind Acceptance” you will meet Laynee.  She’s also had a very tough life, but managed to overcome every obstacle in her way.  She was my favorite because I got to show that a person who makes the best of what they have can go far and still have their dreams come true.

What comes first--characters or plot ideas?
I always have an idea for a plot long before I create the characters for the story.

How important is setting? Does it play an integral role in this story?
Setting is very important.  It can make or break a storyline.  In the first part of my book, they heroine is left to die in the wilderness.  I used one of my favorite places, Wind River Valley, as a basis for the setting.  It’s remote, with very few people.  You can drive on one of the roads there for hours without seeing another car or house.  It would be an ideal place to dump someone and hope that the wild animals took care of your problems for you.

In the second part of the story I needed a slightly upscale, ritzy neighborhood for down-to-earth individuals.  I went with the St. Paul-Minneapolis area.  There are some beautiful homes with wealthy people, and it has a certain stand-offish vibe to the place.  If the setting isn’t right for the plot, I don’t think the story will make as much sense.

What motivates your main characters?
My book is a paranormal, shapeshifter ménage romance.  The characters are motivated in finding, winning and keeping their mate safe from any harm.

What is the central conflict?
Someone wants Laynee dead and she doesn’t know why.

What is your favorite aspect about being a novelist? 
Getting to write about whatever I want, whenever I want.  I can let my imagination run wild creating new worlds, and fictitious characters.  I can live my own fantasies between the pages, and I get paid to do it J

What draws you to this particular genre?

Paranormal books have always fascinated me.  There’s nothing sexier that a sexy, handsome man who can turn into a fierce beast.  My favorite characters so far have been wolves and bears.  When writing paranormal romance, anything goes.  You’re not bound by rules when you create your characters, or other-worldly places.  You can just tune the world out and let your imagination soar.

Are there any other genres you can see yourself writing and why/why not?
I’ve already written in several genres.  “Star Wishes” is an historical ménage set in the mid 1800’s.  The Anna Doubles Down trilogy is a combination historical, paranormal time-travel ménage.  And I tried my hand at paranormal M/M/M with “Meredith’s Pride.”  So far, I’ve enjoyed writing in each of the ones I tried.  The mid to late 1800’s fascinate me so I can easily see myself writing more in that era.  Doing the “Galactic Nuptials” series was great fun because I got to create whole new planets and races of aliens.  I can’t imagine ever doing anything in horror because I don’t know how I’d work the romance into it J

What’s your goal as an author? By that, I mean...why write? Why is it important to you? 
Writing was my salvation after I recovered from a series of strokes.  I had to give up my nursing career and I was floundering with nothing to challenge my mind.  Hubby talked me into giving writing a try about four years ago and I’ve never regretted it.  From being sick so long, writing romance reintroduced romance into my life and my marriage benefited from it.  Now, with each book I write, I hope that someone, just like me, is getting a type of inspiration from it.  I do all that I can to encourage new writers to give it a chance.  You have nothing to lose and everything to gain.

If you could snap your fingers and transport yourself anywhere in the world, where would you go and why? 
Wind River, Wyoming.  It’s my favorite place in the world, and hopefully my husband and I will retire there someday.  The scenery is breathtaking and there are very few people in the area.  You can hike, or take nature drives and it’s a cameraman’s paradise.  The wild animals are still ‘wild’ and you never know what you’ll see when you go around that next corner.  I’ve been all over the world, England, Wales, France, Japan, China and there’s no place as nice as Wind River Valley.

Tea or coffee?
Alas, I’m sad to say neither.  I had stomach surgery two years ago for weight loss – lost 145 lbs – and I can’t have tea or coffee.  What I am, is a 1% milk person pretty much anytime day or night.

Night person or early riser?
Yes!  LOL!  I am a night person and I’m up early because I seldom sleep.  I’ve suffered from severe insomnia for a very long time.  I go to bed with hubby, then get up when he goes to sleep.  I work for a few hours and then go back to bed so I can get up with his alarm in the morning.  Most days it’s fine, but about once a month I crash and sleep for almost a whole day.  I don’t worry about it because it’s normal for me.

Tell us 5 little known facts about yourself. 
1. I was married twice.  My first marriage was twenty years of misery with an abusive partner.  It took me twenty years to get up the courage to stand up for myself and walk away.  My first book, “Table for Three” is loosely based on my experiences with an abusive marriage.
2. I’ve been with to my current husband for 17 years and he is truly my soul mate.   We met in an internet chat room back in 1996 while he was living in Oklahoma and I was in Tennessee.  We chatted online, exchanged letters and finally ran up huge phone bills getting to know one another.  For both of us it was love at first sight when we finally took the plunge to meet face-to-face.  We drove to W. Memphis, Arkansas because it was halfway between our two homes.  By December of that year, I packed my bags and headed west.  We’ve been together, happy, ever since.
3. Almost two years ago I was diagnosed with Pulmonary Hypertension and told that if things did not change I’d be dead within the next eighteen months.  Let me tell you, that can scare a gal pretty badly.  I was a huge person, right around 310 pounds and only 4’11” tall.  My sister said I was as round as I was tall.  There is no cure for Pulmonary Hypertension, but it can be controlled with the right lifestyle.  I had to lose weight but the big question was ‘how?”  I was taking 23 different medications daily, walking with a walker, and on 6 liters of oxygen per minute continuously.  It wasn’t like I could jog or ride a bike.  It was decided I would have weight loss surgery.  I had the surgery two days before Christmas and was home in time to be with my husband when he opened his presents.  Luckily for me, the surgery worked.  I lost 145 pounds and I have kept it off.  I only take a couple of medications now, no more oxygen and I packed away my cane in the closet.  I still have “Pulmonary Hypertension” but my prognosis for a long life has greatly improved.
4. When I was on vacation last year, we stopped at the old ghost town of Hamilton, Nevada.  We got out and walked around, trying to see some of the old buildings.  The town flourished as a mining town back in the 1800’s.  Now, it’s just a crumbled shell, but the old mill is still down the dirt road within walking distance.  I hiked down to it, wandering the path and listening to nature.  It’s too far away from civilization to hear traffic noises, and there are no light poles to ruin your view.  It’s easy to imagine what it must have been like to live back in that time, forced to walk to all your destinations.

When I got to the mill, I walked up around it carefully.  The doors are blocked, but all the windows have been busted out so you can see inside really easily.  The wind was blowing and I could hear things inside being tossed around by the stout breeze.  Several times I thought I heard a voice coming from the upstairs, and I watched the windows diligently for shadows to prove I wasn’t imagining things.

Of course, it was my imagination, but that was how my book “Anna Doubles Down” came to be.  I stood there and wondered what I would do if somehow I could transport back in time to see the mill in operation.  Anna became me and her adventures started.
5. Although I feel like I’m in my late thirties or early forties, I’ll be sixty years old on my next birthday.  Hubby doesn’t know it yet, but he’s going to throw me a big party and get me some outrageous gift. J.  For my fiftieth birthday, he bought me a diamond ring.  Not just any ring, but one he designed the setting himself and took it to the jewelry in Minnesota to have made.  It’s beautiful, with a flawless one karat diamond in the center.  He’s going to have to go a long way to beat that!  J


I’d like to thank you for having me here, today.  I’ve enjoyed ‘tooting my own horn.’  I would be so happy if some of your readers would check out my site (I designed it myself and it was my first attempt at web design).  I’m always throwing up contests and sharing news.  You can find me at www.missymartine.com

Thank you so much for sharing so much of yourself with us. It's truly an honor to have you. Now let's check out this book because it sounds amazing! My door is always open for a colleague--thanks for stopping by. 

Blurb of "Blind Acceptance"...
Laynee Conners has been in a school for the blind since her mother died when she was five. Now, her father wants her to come home so he can get his hands on the inheritance her grandfather left her.
David and Eric Rivers are brothers, adopted into the Wind River Pack. They’re called home to Wyoming when their alpha wants to do a head count of all his pack members. Children are disappearing from other packs, and he’s concerned about his family.
The brothers find Laynee in the woods, drugged and left to die. Both their beasts claim the fragile young woman as their mate.
Can a bear and a wolf share a mate?
Time’s running out. They have to convince Laynee she’s theirs before her father succeeds in his plans.

An excerpt...
Groaning, Laynee slowly opened her eyes and shivered. “Father?” She felt groggy, her head almost spinning. Her tongue felt thick, and a bad taste coated her mouth. She could smell an earthy, pine scent mixed with the odor of damp, rotting wood. The air was crisp and bitingly cold. She reached out her hand and trailed her fingers over the rough bark of a tree. A cold wind ruffled through her hair.
“Ugh,” she groaned when she felt the moisture seeping into her jeans. She could feel the prickle of briars against her palms as she pushed to a sitting position, the spongy ground making her draw back in horror. Why can’t I think clearly? Everything seems so fuzzy. “Where the hell am I, Father?” she screamed.
She froze and tried to calm her breathing, listening carefully for the sound of voices. The only sound was the branches creaking and the groaning of the trees in the wind. She wrapped her arms around her waist and tried to stop from shaking. “What am I gonna do now?”
Trying to control her fear, she struggled to her feet and reached out with her hand to steady herself against a tree. Dizziness nearly overwhelmed her as she dropped to her knees. She turned her face to the wind and strained to hear a familiar sound. After a minute, she tried to stand and froze. The rhythmic sound of footsteps beating against the path caused her breath to catch. “Who’s there?” she whispered.
“I can hear something panting.” Using her legs, she pushed back toward the tree when something plowed through the brush. When she heard an excited yip, she turned to the direction it came from and smiled. “Doggy, here boy.” Barely able to keep her eyes open, she held out her hand. Moments later, something cold and wet pressed against her palm.
She took a shaky breath and laughed. “You’re a big fellow, aren’t you?” Laynee continued to pet him, laughing when he licked her cheek and neck, partially leaning on his firm back. The heat from his body drew her. She scooted closer and hugged him tight.
“You’re so warm, boy. Do you think I could warm myself for just a minute?” It was almost like he understood, cuddling closer, giving her the warmth from his body. “Fellow, we need to get out of here. You’ve got to have a master somewhere.” Her hands rubbed over his neck. “You don’t have a damn collar. Are you a stray?” She sighed when he licked her cheek. “Do you think you could lead us out of here, big guy? I can’t make it on my own. You’ll have to let me lean on you. I’m not feeling too well.”

* * * *

Eric sniffed Laynee’s neck, whined, and then growled softly. She’s my mate! There was something off about her scent, but there was no doubt, this woman was his mate. He spotted a drink can on the ground and leaned down to sniff it, growling when he caught the unnatural scent. She was drugged, just like the man said. When she stiffened, he stopped growling and licked her cheek, whining when he felt her relax against him.
Turning, he stared at her face and froze. Her blank gaze was directed his way, but it was obvious she didn’t see him. My beautiful mate is blind! What kind of a man would leave his blind daughter to fend for herself?
Another unusual scent caught Eric’s attention. He raised his nose and breathed in deeply. With a low growl, he pulled away from Laynee and moved to the other side of the tree.
“Wait,” Laynee cried, and tried to grab for him, nearly falling flat on her face.
He hurried back so she could touch him, but not before he saw the raw meat lying on the ground. It’s a miracle some animal didn’t find her before I did. I’ve got to get her moving toward the highway so David can find us. They were too far from the road for David to pick up her scent unless he shifted. I’d hate to see how she’d react to hearing a bear lumbering through the woods.
Eric nudged her thigh and watched in horror as she tumbled over onto her side. Damn, I didn’t mean to knock you down.
Laynee groaned and pulled herself up. “I’m sorry, boy. I can’t seem to wake up. I’m so dizzy.”
Eric growled softly. I know why you’re dizzy. All those drugs are still in your system. It’s gonna be hard getting you back to the car if I don’t shift.
Determined, he nudged her thigh again and gripped her shirt between his teeth and pulled. She got the message and pulled herself up.
“Okay, boy. I’m coming. Keep your shirt on.” She got shakily to her feet, leaned heavily against Eric, and threaded her fingers in his ruff, holding on tight. Eric leaned down, closed his jaw around the soda can, and then prodded her forward, moving her around rocks and limbs as carefully as he could. Slowly they made their way toward the highway.

Author bio...

I was born, and raised in the great southern state of Tennessee.  In my youth, I studied nursing, and spent several happy years working in the hospitals there until I branched out into medical management in 1980.
In 1998 I was managing a medical supply house in Chattanooga, when I met the love of my life.  The only problem facing me then, he lived way out in Oklahoma.  You see, we had met in a chat room!
He romanced me daily with love letters, flowers and phone calls.  It wasn’t long before I uprooted myself, and moved west to join him.  We married in 1999, and then continued our fantasy romance all over the world.  Together we have traveled in almost all of the Continental United States, and taken trips to Canada and China.
I retired from working in 2002 and it wasn’t long before my husband was encouraging me to find some kind of outlet to occupy my time, something that was challenging, and rewarding.  I was already obsessed with reading about romance, and I began to think I could probably write a good, romantic story.  My husband heartily agreed with me.  With that encouragement, I began writing my first book.  I wasn’t really convinced that anyone else would find it interesting, but he pressed me to take a chance and send it in to a publisher.  To my surprise, it was accepted, and now I’m able to share it with readers everywhere who like a “happily ever after” story.
Today, I’m living in California with my, still romantic, husband of twelve years, and our boys.  Our boys consist of Beau, Midnight, and Bubba, three male cats that allow us to live with them and serve them at their leisure.  I continue to write almost daily, hoping that someone, somewhere will get the same enjoyment from reading my stories, that I get from writing them.

DON'T FORGET TO ENTER THE GIVEAWAY BY LEAVING A COMMENT BELOW! Make sure to include your email address! Thanks! 

7 comments:

Summer Oreilly said...

OMG I WANT THIS BOOK >< My email is summero148413@yahoo.com

PaParanormalFan Renee said...

Hello Missy,

I'd first like to thank you so much for taking time out of your busy day to spend with your Fans! You are such an Amazing Author, who reallyyyyy sets my Kindle on Fire ;) WooHoo LOL, that I have you on Auto-Buy. Thank you also for such a Great Interview from the Heart, that your Fans could get to know "You" better. It really meant a lot.....especially for me since I have personally went through difficult times similar to what you so graciously shared with Us.
It was great to find out about your new release & what inspired you in writing “Blind Acceptance”, of your “The Wind River Pack Pack Series”. The Blurb & Excerpt was so intriguing, I can't wait to read Laynee, David & Eric's Story.
Thank You Again Missy, Take Care,
PaParanormalFan (Renee)
paranormalromancefan at yahoo dot com

ladybirdrobi said...

Hi Missy,
It is me again just love your wolf stories. Where do your ideas come from and are you a by the seat of your pants or plot line writer?

Robin
Robbibird3@aol.com

Missy Martine said...

First, thanks, Summer - maybe you'll win a copy today :)

Hi Renee, and thank you for your kind words.

Hello Robin, I'm a 'plotter' all the way. I like to know exactly where the book's going before I put down the first word. As for ideas, they can come from anywhere. I got the idea for Anna Doubles Down when I visited the old ghost town of Hamilton, Nevada on vacation. I was standing in the woods alone and started wondering what it would have been like to live back then. Next thing you knew, I had a story.

June M. said...

I am new to this world and will be reading the Wolfen Heritage series and then this book :) I love how more authors are writing main characters that have physical disablities and more realistic body types, it makes them more realistic. There are very few people who are perfect in the world.
June
manning_J2004 at yahoo dot com

Missy Martine said...

Thank for taking the time to stop by today - I let hubby pick the winner of the copy of Blind Acceptance and the winner is...
Paranormal Romance Fan - Congrats and I hope each of you has a great rest of the week.

Anonymous said...

I found your great blog through the WLC Blog Follows on the World Literary Cafe! Great to connect!