Author Interviews: D’Elen McClain

D'Elen McClain

D’Elen McClain

I’m loving these interviews. Are you getting to know some authors new to you? Let’s do it again! Introducing D’Elen McClain!

D’Elen McClain aka Holly S. Roberts is the USA Today best-selling author of thirty books soon to be thirty-one. She went to police academy at age forty-five and spent ten years working in law enforcement. She retired as a sex crimes and homicide detective. She now spends most of her time writing high in the Arizona Mountains with her husband and two spoiled dogs.

Let’s start with something fun. What’s your favorite hobby?

Gardening. I love every part of it and have always liked getting my hands dirty. It may sound strange but the earth has energy that feeds my soul. I bring all my herbs inside in the winter and coax them until spring. Our kitchen window is a garden right now.

If you had the opportunity—who would you like to spend an afternoon with and why?

My great, great, great maybe great, grandmother. She was a Jefferson, related to Thomas Jefferson who has always fascinated me. I would love to know the thoughts of women in that time period. I come from a long line of female warriors. From raising ten children (my mother’s mother) to working on highly classified jobs for the military (my mother), our bloodline is filled with great women.

Coffee, tea, soda or something else?

Water, coffee, tea in that order. It’s been years since I’ve had soda and I will most likely die without ever drinking one again.

What are you working on right now?

I’m so excited about Sizzle (writing as Holly S. Roberts) and I’ve just finished the first chapter. It’s the next book in the Hotter Than Hell series and I have a lot to live up to. The reviews for Heat, book I, have been outstanding and my readers are bugging me for the next installment. This book is about an enforcer for an Arizona crime syndicate. There’s a battle among readers for Team Moon (book I) or Team Gomez (book II). Oh, the pressure.

How would you describe your writing style?

I build a story in my head and put nothing on paper until I know the time is right. Things often change once I begin typing. The small problems also work themselves out. I can mentally be working on stories for several books at a time but once the actual writing starts, it’s all about the current work in progress.

Do you have any advice for a person just beginning their writing career?

I wrote a book in my twenties. It took over a year and was a painful process. I realized I wasn’t ready. At age 49, I wrote my next book in two months. This was while I worked full-time as a police detective. My writing flowed and helped me get through the insomnia I’ve always suffered. Then I wrote another book and another. I’m now a full-time writer. So my advice is to finish the first book, then the next. Write every day and every minute you can find time for. If you’re ready, you will know it.

Do you immerse yourself in new situations for writing ideas or do your ideas come to you through your normal, day-to-day life?

My ideas come from odd places and or situations and sometimes research will spark that creative place in my brain. I’m always adding a note to my phone or iPad—a book title, phrase, idea. It’s become the norm for me and my husband is accustomed to that far off, slightly dazed look I get.

Where can we find you on the interwebs?

Website: www.wickedstorytelling.com

Facebook: http://facebook.com/delenmcclainauthor

Facebook: http://facebook.com/hollysrobertsauthor

Twitter: http://twitter.com/mywickedstories

Instagram: http://instagram.com/wicked_story_telling

Thank you so much for chatting with us today, D’Elen.

If you liked today’s interview, please check out one or more of D’Elen’s pages. She’d love to have you visit.

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Anything But Quiet: Monday Blog Post

Jade Plant with Christmas Decorations

Jade Plant with Christmas Decorations

It’s the middle of the month and my supposed quiet month is anything but. I’m working on two non-profits, with no respite since their actual operational dates. I know I shouldn’t put so much energy into them but both are dear to my heart. I have mentioned in past weeks about my editing projects and trying to get my Mystery and NaNo novel to finished 1st draft. None of that has happened. What I have started is a project for another writer, formatting her book. That has been a struggle but I think I’m about done. It had to be converted from PDF to word, which made the formatting that much harder. On the positive side, she’ll have a word doc that she can actually work with once I hand it back. That’s a win in my book. Aside from the 21st and 22nd, the remaining days of the month are actually appointment free. I may get things done after all.

I took my Christmas boxes to the post office last week. It only took half an hour in line to get them mailed out. I count that as a win. My friend, eight people in line behind me, was there over 45 minutes.

On the Christmas front the front yard is decorated beautifully. Best of all on Saturday we had snow. All day the trees were frosted but that didn’t last long. By sundown, most of the snow had melted. I was hoping by the time the outdoor lights came on there’d be snow to offer a frosted effect but that did not happen. A little sad but that just means my Sunday walk with friends was less slippery. I have the tree up and the cloth picture we cover with wrapping paper to tape received Christmas cards is hanging up. The rest of my interior decorations I’ve left in the bins and taking back out the garage. Other than my jade plant, the tree and the card display, I’m not going to put up any other decorations. My heart just isn’t into it. No real reason except I keep thinking about all the work to put them up only to take them down in two weeks. Just doesn’t seem worth the effort.

I had a January Jones web radio show scheduled for today but January is travelling. If you missed my show last week, you can go to my Media tab and the Recorded Interviews sub-heading to find links to any of the six supporting stations broadcasting last week’s show. Author friend, D’Elen McClain, was on with me. A two for one deal. Please listen. We talk about our work, how we go about doing it and even some personal Christmas stories. By January I’ll have my 2016 appearances, at least the ones I have scheduled so far, up on my Where Will I Be tab. Take a look. If you’re in the area, please stop by and see me. I’d love to chat with you.

I’m excited about Christmas, despite my reluctance to decorate inside my house. My daughter is coming to visit, Christmas Eve or Christmas Day, depends on other family obligations. I’m going to try and convince her to come Christmas Eve. I’ll make duck for dinner. When we were stationed in England, I always bought a goose, an English tradition, for our Christmas feast. Goose isn’t available here so duck is the next best thing. I love duck and can’t wait to share it. I’ll have the traditional mashed potatoes and green beans and from my own family, cole slaw, or as my people say, cabbage salad. I’ll make cranberry sauce too, the fresh kind with ground up cranberries and orange. There’s nothing better in my opinion.

I mentioned last week that I started an Instagram account. I’ve posted a few pictures since last Saturday’s Electric Light Parade. There are pics of our Tuesday hike to a spot called the Spanish Ruins, putting up my tree and even Saturday’s snow. You can find me on Instagram at ConniesRandomThoughts. What a fun way to share pictures. I hope you stop by my page and follow.

We’re getting down to the last two weeks of Santa’s Authors Christmas 2015 Giveaway also known as the Winter Wonderland of Books Christmas Giveaway. Here’s the link through my website:  https://conniesrandomthoughts.com/giveaways-and-prizes/. Fifty authors have put up all kinds of prizes from books to jewelry to Amazon gift cards. Go ahead and log in. You’ll find links to all of the supporting author’s social media. Click on a link, enter to win. The more links you click, the better your chance of winning. The grand prize is $200 of Paypal cash, good anywhere on the planet. I’ve put up the two signed paperback books in my Brown Rain series as my main prize. I also put up my Christmas Tales book (signed, of course) as a second prize. Good luck! Thanks for participating.

If you are an author, please take a look at the Holly Lisle How to Revise Your Novel, offer. It ends Tuesday (the 15th!) at mid-night. I used this course myself and found it to be just the thing to get me from a hot mess of an initial draft manuscript to a real story. It’s been revised and is better than ever. If you’d like to turn your NaNo novel, or any other manuscript, into a work that can be published, you want to sign up for this workshop. Click on this link to sign up. https://hollyswritingclasses.com/?home&aid=10009

Thanks for stopping by my blog today. I hope you’re having a marvelous December. Do you have Christmas decorating stories? Kitchen disasters to share? Fun in the snow pictures? I’d love to hear about them. Please share in the comments below.

I published my December newsletter. Did you miss it? Click here to sign up for my newsletter. I make special offers to my newsletter people that I do not make on the website blog posts. If you like the content, please encourage your friends to sign up, the newsletter is sharable, send it to whomever you think will like it. Don’t delay signing up. You’ve already missed out on two great offers. The January newsletter is coming out soon. Sign up now so you don’t miss out.

Mystery at the Fair released July 15th! I’m pretty excited about it. You can buy it and my other books at: Apple, Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Kobo, Smashwords , Gumroads  or Chatebooks today! You can also see all of my books on www.ConniesRandomThoughts.com. If you’ve read any of my books, please drop a review on the site where you bought it or on Goodreads. It’s a big help to me in the book rankings each vendor uses to promote the books on their sites. Thanks in advance.

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