Did anything inspire you to write “Consequences” and “Truth”? Or was it more random than anything?
I believe it was more random. I had the “thought” of the opening scene of Consequences. Everything has grown from that. The characters have taken on lives and personalities of their own. I’ve loved watching them blossom!
Can you name some funny and/or random things that happened while you were writing “Truth”? (It can be something that happened in the story, or something that happened with your family. Anything at all!)
I wrote about six beginnings to Truth. That’s based on the Epilogue of Consequences. I took the story many different directions. It wasn’t until I came to terms with where I wanted the story to go that I was finally able to start truly writing. Once I did, Mr. Jeff told me that no one would like it. He said the readers would be upset. It wasn’t that I didn’t care—but, I can’t write that way. I have to write what I want to write.
I’ve learned that it isn’t possible to please EVERYONE. Therefore, I’ve decided to please myself. Funny thing—the ratings and reviews are fantastic for Truth.
Tell me a bit about yourself. What was your childhood like?
I’m married to my high school sweetheart. We have three great children—two grown and graduated from college and one still in high school. My family and my writing are my two priorities in life.
I love to travel. That has been a great bonus with writing. I’m so excited to travel and meet readers. It is a very exciting time for Mr. Jeff and me.
My childhood was a long time ago. I was raised by a single mother who did her best. I always wanted brothers and sisters. I’m blessed with siblings from marriage, but I basically grew up an only child. I swore I wouldn’t do that to my child…thus three!
Who is your inspiration?
I have met many authors who I consider inspirational; however, I’d say my grandmothers were my inspiration. That isn’t because they wrote books—they showed me, by example, how hard work and sincerity make a lasting impression.
Apart from writing novels, what else you do? Are you a full time writer, if yes, what do you when you’re not writing? Have any hobbies or obsessions?
I’m not a full-time writer yet. I will be in three weeks. Currently, I have NO life outside of work and writing. That is my plan for the future—to have a life as well as an obsession. Writing is my obsession! I LOVE getting lost in my manuscript. I will sit down and suddenly five hours have passed. When I’m doing other things the manuscript and the characters will infiltrate my thoughts. It is the most addicting thing I’ve ever done!
“Good for you.” He leaned toward her, his eyes devouring her entirely, until she questioned her own presence. “Your ability to admit your displeasure is refreshing. It encourages me to be honest, too.”
Claire did her best to glare, “Honesty. That would be a refreshing change.”
His expression remained soft and so were his words, “You should know …I am sorry.”
The world as Claire knew it, shifted. Perhaps it was an earthquake, they do happen in California. Why couldn’t he be domineering or abrasive? That she could resist. But, apologetic, in the depths of her soul, she never expected to hear those three words.
“What?” She tried unsuccessfully to subdue the overpowering trembling. The volume of her voice rose exponentially with each phrase, “You’re sorry?” The years of submission, incarceration, and domination bubbled out. No, not bubbled–gushed. This was not his house. She was not sequestered away from the love and support of others. She’d say whatever she wanted, and then tell him to leave. If he didn’t–she’d call security. They were after all, on her call log. “Well, Tony, I believe I need a little clarification. Tell me what exactly you’re sorry about. I’ll gladly give you a few options.”
The fury surging through her veins wouldn’t allow her to remain seated. She stood and paced, around the coffee table, in front of the large windows, back to the chair and again to the coffee table. She felt his eyes on her, as she made multiple slow and methodical loops. Her mind was a whirlwind, a tornado, of words. Each syllable vehemently rushed to get out. Instead of opening the flood gate, Claire took a few deep breaths. She wanted to proceed slowly, clearing away the debris cluttering her mind, and choose the right words. Finally, she began, “First, you’re sorry for invading my privacy for years, years before I even knew you existed. Second, you’re sorry for kidnapping me, isolating, controlling me, and manipulating me. Third, you’re sorry for lying to me, pretending you cared and oh yeah, marrying me. Fourth, listen carefully Tony, this is a big one…you’re sorry for framing me for attempted murder, resulting in incarceration in a federal penitentiary.” She sat back down, arms once again crossed over her breasts. It was the most direct she’d ever spoken to him, and it felt liberating. Unfortunately, the resentment coursing through her veins wouldn’t allow her to relish her new found independence.
She expected her words to incite anger; after all, she’d experienced his anger before. Nevertheless, carelessly and unapologetically Claire forged ahead. “I would prefer the words, but you are welcome to say, one through four, if that’s easier for you.”
He leaned forward. Cautiously she looked up into his face. Her body trembled. The cause may have been the fury she’d just released, or perhaps fear of his anticipated reaction. Then she took in his expression and without warning the trembling stopped. His eyes were soft, the color of melted chocolate–even sad, overflowing with regret. He reached for her hand and gently tugged. Slowly, Claire released her appendage, allowing it to sit in his large palm. Tenderly he closed his fingers encasing her petite hand.
“I’m deeply sorry for one and four.” He rubbed the top of her hand with his thumb. “I did provide you with an alternative destination for number four.” Claire exhaled audibly, Tony continued, “I’m not proud of two, but three would never have happened without it.” His tone deepened and slowed, “I am not, and never will be sorry for three. And, for the record, I never lied about or pretended to love you. I didn’t realize it at first, but I have loved you since before you knew my name.” He slowly lifted the hand he held and lowered his lips to the firm soft skin. “And, you forgot our divorce. I am sincerely sorry for that also. Had I known you would be released so soon, we could still be married.” He placed her left hand on her knee, and stroked her empty fourth finger. “You could still officially be mine.”