Wednesday, April 27, 2011

AUTHOR VONNIE DAVIS SKIPS TO THE BEAT OF A FLUTE


Vonnie Davis
Readers, welcome author Vonnie Davis, whose first book, STORM'S INTERLUDE, will soon be released from The Wild Rose Press. Vonnie, tell us about growing up and your life before you became a full-time writer.

Vonnie: While most people go through life marching to the beat of a drum, I seem to skip to the beat of a flute. My children would nod their heads to that statement and say, “Yep, yep, that’s Mom.”

When I found myself a single parent with three children, little skills and no job, I submitted a job application at a large factory every day until they hired me. I got the job not because I had the skills, but because the folks in human resources were tired of seeing me. I learned to assemble engines for tractor-trailers. For twenty-six years I worked in the heavy metal industries, learning what I could and retiring as a stress engineer.

I started college at the age of forty-five, working night shift so I could attend classes during the day as a full-time student. There I fell in love with Billy Shakespeare and Geof Chaucer. I wrote my first play at Penn State where it was put on for Lunchtime Theatre. My middle child, who was a college senior at the time, transferred to PSU for his final semester so he could say he went to college with his mom. We’d meet at the dining hall and library to study and talk. I recall quite fondly the day he came into the library, socked his books on the table and groused, “If one more professor tells me he or she hopes I’m as good a student as my mother, I’ll just scream. I carry a four-point-oh, for God’s sake.”

After being alone for twelve years, I met a man online. He sashayed into my mailbox on a jazzbeat and a smile. He’s a retired English teacher and author of three books. I’ve saved the best for last; I have six stupendous grandchildren. I’d tell you about them, but after four or five hours, your eyes would just glaze over.

Caroline: I'll bet you have photos, too. LOL Who are your favorite authors and favorite genres?

Vonnie: I adore romance, the hope, the life-lessons, the sensuality of every story.

Caroline: How many books do you read a month? What are you reading now?

Susan Macatee's book,
also from The Wild
Rose Press
Vonnie: I read 4-6 books a month now that I’m writing so heavily. Currently I’m reading a delightful Civil War romance by Susan Macatee, CONFEDERATE ROSE.



Caroline: I agree with you, Susan's writing is fabulous, plus she's such a terrific person. I alsways enjoy a book more if I know the author is a nice person. When you’re not writing, what’s your favorite way to relax and recharge?


Vonnie: Calvin and I travel, we dote on the grandkids or watch a good movie.

 Caroline: We don't have grandkids (wistful sigh) but Hero and I love watching movies together in the family room and traveling together. Describe yourself in three or four words.


Vonnie: Loving, Supportive, Focused and Extra-fluffy (polite speak for over-weight).


Caroline: Ouch! Extra-fluffy describes me, too. Would you like to share any guilty pleasures that feed your muse?


Vonnie: Chocolate and margaritas, not at the same time, of course.


Caroline: Wise choices, but now I'm hungry for Tex-Mex and a margarita. Thanks for that! ;-) How long have you been writing?


Vonnie: I began writing a series of short stories in the 5th grade about a little man from Mars who came to Earth and got into all kinds of zany predicaments. As soon as I heard my classmates chuckle, I knew that’s what I wanted to do. Then when I was a young adult, self-doubt moved in with a five-piece set of luggage and stayed until I met Calvin. He’s encouraged me to chuck the baggage and follow my dreams. I’ve been writing seriously for five years.


Caroline: Amazing what a difference a supportive spouse makes, isn't it? We're both lucky! Where do you prefer to write? Do you need quiet, music, solitude? PC or laptop?


Vonnie: I have two favorite spots. One is on my recliner with my laptop on my lap. The other is at Bob Evans where the waitresses know us. They hook me up to an IV of coffee as soon as I sit down. We’ve been known to campout on one of their booths for four hours and write. Obviously we have to leave a nice tip for rental fees. ;-)


Caroline writing with
cat Bailey looking on
Caroline: I admire anyone who can write in a restaurant. I prefer my office. Are you a plotter or a panzer?


Vonnie: I’m a pantzer. I wing it until my characters take over and then I merely take dictation.


Caroline: Wonderful when that happens, isn't it? Do you use real events or persons in your stories or as an inspiration for stories?


Vonnie writing in a
cafe setting but
where's Calvin?
Vonnie: No, my imagination is too off the wall for that.


Caroline: Yes, I know what your mean. Wasn't it Tom Clancy who said "The difference between fiction and real life is that fiction has to make sense?" Do you do your research before you begin a new project, or as you go along?


Vonnie: I research locations first. Other research I do as needed.


Caroline: Tell us about your writing schedule. Do you set goals? Do you write daily?


Available July 15 from The Wild Rose Press!
Vonnie: I write daily. I get up around eight and write all morning. Afternoons I do emails and self-promotion. I write again in the evenings while we watch TV until around midnight. Obviously with such a schedule, I’m retired. I have to laugh as I read that! It makes no sense—as if writing isn’t work. (Thunks forehead with fist.)


Caroline: Isn't that the truth? I hate when people think I goof off all day because I'm at home and "all I do is write." What do you hope your writing brings to readers?


Vonnie: That we can overcome most anything. That we possess a great deal of strength within our spirits. That unconditional love makes us crawl out from under our rock of fear into the sunshine of day.


Caroline: What advice would you give to pre-published authors?


Vonnie: Write and rewrite, join a writers’ group, find a critique partner or mentor (I mentor two writers) and take online classes to learn your craft.


Caroline: Excellent advice and kudos to you for mentoring other writers. I knew I liked you! Tell us about your latest release.


Vonnie: My debut novel, STORM’S INTERLUDE, will be released by The Wild Rose Press on July 15th.


Caroline: How about a blurb?


Vonnie: Here it is:

Nurse Rachel Dennison comes to Texas determined to prepare her new patient for a second round of chemo. What she isn’t counting on is her patient’s twin brother, Storm Masterson.

Half Native American with the ability to have “vision dreams,” Storm dreams about Rachel for three nights before her arrival. Both are unprepared for the firestorm of emotions their first chance encounter ignites. Even so, Storm has two things Rachel won’t abide: a domineering personality and a fiancĂ©e.

Yet, ultimately, it is Rachel’s past—an abusive, maniacal ex-boyfriend—that threatens to keep them apart…and Storm’s dreams that bring them together again.


Caroline: Wow, that sounds intriguing. You know I love stories set in Texas. And I had a character named Storm in my Kincaid series now on Smashwords and Amazon. How about an excerpt?


Vonnie: Here's a PG excerpt:


Storm heard off-key singing when he opened the back door. He quietly toed off his boots in the mudroom before stepping into the kitchen.


An open laptop sat on the wooden kitchen table. Beside it was a mug of steaming tea. On the counter was a loaf of wheat bread next to a jar of peanut butter. Protruding from the opened refrigerator was a cute behind, covered by baggy yellow pajama bottoms, wiggling to the beat of the song being sung. “Shot through the heart and you’re to blame, you give love a bad name.”


The off-tune singing stopped, but that perfectly rounded bottom continued to wiggle. "Pickles...pickles. Surely there are pickles in this huge refrigerator. Maybe some of those sweet little Gherkins. Oh, look, cottage cheese. You give love a bad name…” The off-tune singer extracted a container from the crowded contents of the refrigerator, absently reaching out to set it on the counter.


Sneaking up behind her in his stocking feet, he placed a hand on the edge of the open door of the refrigerator and leaned over her bent body.


She moved a pitcher of orange juice. “Okay, pickles, where are you hiding?”


“Check behind the milk.”


Rachel yelped and spun around, her hand to her heart. Her big blue eyes opened impossibly wide. “You! Wha...what are you doing here?”


He held out his hand. “Hello, Rachel. I’m Storm Masterson, Sunny’s twin brother.”


“You…you’re Sunny’s brother? Don’t you dare touch me.” She made a fist and had the audacity to shake it under his nose. He didn’t know whether to laugh or paddle that cute behind she’d been wiggling earlier. “You…you just keep your hands and your lips to yourself. You…you naked, kissing bandit.”


Storm leaned his head back and laughed. “Well, I’m not naked now. Just how do I classify as a bandit? I didn’t steal anything from you.”


Rachel fisted her hands on her hips, leaned in and narrowed her eyes in such an appealing way he was overcome with a keen desire to kiss her softly and slowly, the kind of kiss that made you sigh partway through it. “You stole a kiss from me.” Her eyebrow arched. “Or have you forgotten?”


He smiled, his hands itching to touch her. What man walking the face of this earth could forget a kiss like the one they’d shared earlier? “Is it called stealing when the woman gives as good as she got?”


Rachel shook her fist again. “Back up, buster. I’ll not be kissed like that again.”


Caroline: Okay, you've hooked me and now I HAVE to read that book the minute it's available!  How can readers learn more about you?


Vonnie: I blog at http://www.vintagevonnie.blogspot.com/


My website is http://www.vonniedavis.com/




Caroline: Those are gorgeous models in your video, Vonnie. Best of luck with your writing career!
Thanks to Vonnie Davis for sharing her personal and writing life with us! Perhaps she'll come back for another visit after her books is released.
In the meantime, please remember SAVE YOUR HEART FOR ME is available at The Wild Rose Press www.thewildrosepress.com/caroline-clemmons-m-638.html and also from Kindle and other online stores.

Thanks for reading. Please come back.




12 comments:

Vonnie Davis said...

Caroline, thank you for being such a gracious hostess. You've got all kinds of things happening here on your lovely blog.

Susan Macatee said...

What a great life story, Vonnie! You certainly are persistent, a quality all writers need. And thanks for the plug, LOL. I'm reading a Civil War romance right now by another TWRP author, Victoria Gray, called Angel in My Arms.

Your book sounds great! Best of luck with your upcoming release!

Sue Palmer Fineman said...

Wow! That's an impressive blog, Vonnie. You've sold me! I can't wait to read this book.

Sandra Crowley said...

Vonnie, I love your cover and join you in hoping our stories encourage readers to believe in their inner strength. That, if they dig deep, they'll discover the courage to cope with any challenge they face.

You've certainly faced your challenges and turned them to your advantage.

Best of luck to you, may you revel in super sales.

Vonnie Davis said...

Susan-I'm totally enjoying your "Confederate Rose." One of the great things about historical romance is the meticulous research the author shares with the readers.

Sue-Congratulations on the release of "The Mitchel Money" today. I'm keeping my fingers crossed for great sales.

Sandra-Thanks for stopping by and for offering such kind sentiments.

Dutch Henry said...

Howdy Vonnie, Great interview! Wonderful trailer. I've heard a bit of your novel at writer's group, Ready to buy it! You are a sweet gal, terrific friend and top-shelf writer!...Gitty Up,Dutch

Beth Trissel said...

I loved this interview Vonnie! You are one amazing lady. Your book sounds awesome too and the cover is wonderful. BTW, I am a direct descendant of Chaucer, about 14 or so generations. My father has it figured out. :)

Celia Yeary said...

VONNIE--very interesting! I love the fact you met the love of your life on-line. I just did not believe that ever really happened. I was intrigued by the story of your life...very hard, I'm sure, for many years, until things really clicked for you. I'm telling you, dearest, a good-hearted, loyal, helpful man makes all the difference in the world in your life. And you got luckY! Good for you. If you won't tell anyone, I'll say we have been married 52 years...I bet you're not even that old. But I was VERY young. Still...that's a long time.
Congratulations on your success, and since I was a Davis, I will cheer you on! Celia

Melinda said...

Vonnie,

You are one amazing woman and writer. Thank you for all the insight you have shared with us today. You are one of my favorite authors.

Always follow your dreams and never give up.

I must have your book the moment it is available. Thank you for sharing your strong will.

You are a great person

Walk in harmony,
Melinda

Vonnie Davis said...

Dutch, thanks for stopping by even though you aren't feeling well. Lyme disease AND shingles at the same time. That's just too much, dear friend.

Beth, a decendant of Chaucer??? Really? Too cool!!

Celia, you've been married how long? No way. You look mid-forties. What skin lotion are you using? Do they sell it in 50-gallon drums??

Melinda, thanks for your kind words. As always, you life my spirits. Thanks for stopping by.

Margaret Tanner said...

Hi Vonnie and Caroline,
Great interview. How wonderful Vonnie for you to meet a kindred spiriti on the net and find love. Definitely fate.
Loved the excerpt. It hooked me.

Cheers

Margaret

Vonnie Davis said...

Thank you, Margaret. Finding my prince amoung an online pool of toads was pure fate. He is both a gentleman and a gentle man, as a lady told me today at a writers' conference. Thanks for stopping by.