Where did you grow up, and how did this influence your writing?
I grew up in the middle of the United States where there was corn field after corn field. This pushed me to move away for college and to pack up and travel Europe for a year where I met the most interesting people, ate the best food imaginable, and learned so much about life. It helped fuel my drive to go after the things I want in life, and writing has always been something I've wanted to do.
When you're not writing, how do you spend your time?
I write every free moment I have because it's relaxing and my passion, but, most times I am either playing, watching, or commenting on some sports team with my husband. We generally have coffee in our hands and our dogs fighting for more attention.
Describe your desk
My desk is covered in post it notes-- of every color imaginable. There is usually a coffee mug left over from the day before on a coaster from somewhere else in the world. I have a thing for collecting the most random and unique coasters.
What's the story behind your latest book?
The story about Let Life Happen came to me as I was walking my black lab one night. There is a luxurious building with floor to ceiling windows, large screen TV's the size of walls, and patios that should be featured in magazines. I saw a person standing on his balcony talking on the phone and created this entire persona about him. He became this "lawyer" who demanded his sons to be lawyers because he lived, worked, and breathed for his job. I then created a son for him who was everything he wasn't (how I got one of my main characters in the story) and bam, I had these characters in my head who were desperate to get out onto a page.
What inspires you to get out of bed each day?
My two dogs, one is a seven pound chihuahua and the other is a seventy pound black lab, demand to go out side about 5:30 every morning. So, I would like to come up with an amazing reason, but the truth is if I don't take them out then they'll pee on the bed. However, my students do inspire me to go into work every single day. They all have such unique stories and names and characteristics that make my head spin with ideas.
How do you approach cover design?
I am extremely fortunate because my husband is an amazing graphic designer. I tend to search for certain covers when I read (because I read like crazy) and I know what is visually appealing to me. I try to base my covers off my likes, which is showing the readers some details about the characters but not enough to shape their entire thoughts. I like teasers.
What do you read for pleasure?
Romance with a side of romance. I can't get enough of it. I enjoyed new adult, contemporary, suspense, and the kind that make me laugh out loud. Also, I've been a huge fan of Harlan Coben since I first picked up a book in high school from him. Also, any Harry Potter book is good for a rainy day.
Who are your favorite authors?
My favorite authors are all over the place. I've been a die-hard J.K. Rowling fan since a child but also am a HUGE fan of Harlan Coben, Linda Howard, Julie James, Jill Shalvis, Kristan Higgins, James Patterson, Gillian Flynn, and Brittainy Cherry.
What are your five favorite books, and why?
Harlan Coben: Tell No one--> COULD NOT STOP THINKING ABOUT IT 10 YEARS LATER Alexandre Dumas: Count of Monte Cristo --> It has everything an amazing story needs. Love, heartbreak, revenge, fighting, plotting, drama... J.K. Rowling:Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban--> Sirius Black is my FAVORITE character and we meet him here. Gillian Flynn: Dark Places--> Kept me up at night and questioning everything about existence. When you have a main character who isn't that likable yet you are rooting for her... that's impressive as heck. Jill Shalvis: Simply Irresistible --> First of an amazing series with characters who explode of the pages. If I can remember the first names of the characters years after I read it, I know it stayed with me. Plus, Jill's stories are sweet, realistic, and such an escape from reality that I know I can read her anytime and be put in a good mood.
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