It’s Thursday, and that means it’s time for another Pen Pal visit. Today’s guest is Amber Daulton with LIGHTNING OVER BENNETT RANCH.
Before we get started don’t forget I’m hanging out with Lorraine Paton today with FIVE FUN FACTS about ECLIPSE LAKE. And the uber supportive Kitt Crescendo is giving Eclipse Lake the spotlight treatment too!
Now it’s time to meet a lovely new Pen Pal!
Amber, are you a draft writer or someone who invests a lot of time editing and polishing as you write? Why does your method work best for you?
I edit and polish as I write. If I don’t, I usually become confused and frustrated as to where the story is going. I tend to get a lot of ideas as I write and those ideas usually make more sense than what I originally plotted. I’m also a stickler for details. A scene has to be almost perfect before I move on.
Your method sounds much like mine. It makes the writing process longer, but editing is usually a breeze. My absolute favorite part of starting a new novel is coming up with character names. What is yours and how do you go about it?
Deciding on character names is actually my least favorite part of starting a new novel. The name has to fit with the character I see in my mind perfectly or I can’t use it. I’m very picky (especially with the heroine and hero) and I sometimes spend hours, if not days, just scouring through baby name books and websites for the best names.
What I love most is creating a new world or researching a real town and then twisting it enough to fictionalize it. Research, in my opinion, is more fun than writing at times. I love to learn about new places, cultures and people. Although I’d rather travel to do hands-on research, in-depth reading is second best.
I agree with you on that. I’ve taken a trip to a specific town a few states away specifically for research. I’m using the location as the setting of an upcoming novel. Of course it’s not always possible to visit the locales we choose to use, so online research and reading is a Godsend! Which do you find easier to write— description or dialogue?
Both are easy for me. Dialogue is more fun to write, however, because I love drama and emotion-based scenes. I love to put my characters through the ringer! When I find myself tearing up as I write, I know I’m on a roll. I feel more creative, though, when I write description because I love creating new worlds and scenery. I tend to go overboard with detail sometimes and it hurts to cut back and delete as I edit.
When I find myself balking over cutting something I love, I remember Stephen King’s quote “sometimes you have to kill your babies.” But it does hurt, doesn’t it? And I love emotion-based scenes. Your style sounds wonderful!
Which brings me to LIGHTNING OVER BENNETT RANCH. Can you share a few details?
Lightning over Bennett Ranch is book 2 of the Montana Ranch Collection published on June 9th, 2014 by Books to Go Now. There are five individual novellas in the collection, all written by different authors, and are set in the small town of Willow Creek, Montana. Each story intertwines and shares characters from the other books to create a widespread world within a loving, close-knit community.
What a great concept. And, strange as it may seem, Montana has always been on my list of places to visit. So much history there! Switching things up a bit, as a reader, name a book that had a a profound effect on you.
I read my first romance books, ‘True Blue’ by Ingrid Weaver, when I was 12. It’s about an ex-convict hero and a schoolteacher heroine. After reading this book, I decided I wanted to write my own stories about two people finding adventure and falling in love. And so I did. I finished my first novel within six months and I’ve revised that book several times over the years (it’s currently not published).
I credit ‘True Blue’ with opening the door into modern romantic literature for me. Without it, I may not be writing today.
So you wrote your first novel at twelve? That’s fantastic—and equally fantastic that a single novel opened the door to a whole new world for you. When you’re creating worlds and characters, do you have pets who shadow your writing space?
I have five cats and they always disrupt my writing time. They either lay on my lap (which I don’t mind until they pin one of my hands under their tummy), wrestle with and hiss at one another or meow for attention. I love them but they certainly are a handful!
LOL! I ADORE cats, but five definitely sounds like a handful. I can just imagine them camped out with you in your office, demanding attention as only felines can. And now for a few quick questions. What is your:
Favorite season: Autumn
Favorite color: Purple
Favorite type of music: Hard Rock
Favorite ice cream flavor: Butter Pecan
Casual or dressy: Dressy
I think you’re the first person I’ve interviewed who answered “dressy” to the last question. YAY! I do enjoy being casual, but I love dressing up, so it’s nice to meet a kindred soul. 🙂 Thanks so much for visiting with me today, Amber. I wish you much success with LIGHTNING OVER BENNETT RANCH.
If you’d like to know more about Amber Daulton, connect with her at the following haunts:
Books to Go Now
Amazon Author Page
Writing is the fruit to happiness.
Amber Daulton lives her life by that one belief even though she normally isn’t so Zen.
Author of Forever Winter, A Hero’s Heart and Lightning over Bennett Ranch, she published her first book in 2012 and plans to publish countless more in the future. She lives in the beautiful foothills of North Carolina with her punk-rocker husband and their five crazy kitties. Writing takes up most of her time, aside from her day job in the retail industry. As a fan of contemporary, paranormal and historical novels alike, she can’t get enough of feisty heroines and alpha heroes. Her mind is a wonderland of romance and adventure, laughter and awesome ways of kicking a guy when he’s down. She probably wouldn’t be too sane without her computer and notebooks. After all, what’s a girl to do when there are people jabbering away in her head and it’s hard to shut them up? Write! Nothing else works.
Blurb for LIGHTNING OVER BENNETT RANCH:
Melody Bennett’s parents trampled on her teenage romance with a drifter ten years ago. He disappeared without a word of goodbyes on the night they had planned to run away together. Since then, she cast aside her foolish notions of happily ever after and worked hard alongside the hired help to care for the majestic horses on her family’s ranch. She refused to give love another chance and resigned to live her life alone.
Max Fortaine returned with a heart guarded by secrets and a sizable bank account that took blood, prayers and tears to fund. The cowboy disrupted Melody’s peaceful existence with stolen kisses and a promise for more. After a lifetime of running, mistakes and regrets, he vowed to reclaim the only woman he ever loved… if only her overprotective father didn’t stand in his way.
Purchase LIGHTNING OVER BENNETT RANCH from Amazon
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Montana’s been on my list of places I’d love to visit, too, Mae. I remember reading an old Harlequin Superromance based in Montana where the heroine was a cotton weaver, and I thought it sounded a bit idyllic. There was a cowboy in that story, too. 🙂
Thanks for reading, Kitt.
I’d love to visit Montana too. It’s such beautiful country.
Hi, Kitt. Thanks for stopping by and checking out Amber’s book and interview. Nice to meet someone else with an interest in Montana. I think I’ve read a few Harliquins set there as well. “Big Sky Country!” 🙂
Thanks for having me on your blog, Mae. The interview was wonderful and I love your enthusiasm with the questions. 🙂 This is one of the more fun interviews I’ve had!
Hi, Amber! I’m delighted to have you as my guest today and thrilled you enjoyed the interview 🙂 I love the idea of a small town setting in Montana. Even the name Willow Creek sounds so idyllic. I’m sure readers will get swept away and transported in the pages of your book!
Hi Amber, I love you book. Keep up the great writing.
Opps. Your Book not ‘you’ Book.
LOL! Thanks, Sharon. Will do!
Hi, Sharon. Nice to see you again. 🙂 Thanks for dropping by for Amber’s interview!
I love the interview! Great job.
Thanks for visiting, Tammy. I’m glad you enjoyed Amber’s interview!
Amber – always interesting to hear about an author’s writing process. Character names are hard, aren’t they. Nice job, Mae Clair, spotlighting Amber’s strengths. Well done!
Thank you, Jackie. I’m glad you had a chance to check out the interview. Thanks for visiting! 🙂
Pretty cover. Makes me want to visit ranches in Montana.