Monday, March 24, 2014

INTERVIEW WITH EMELLE GAMBLE, AUTHOR OF MOLLY HARPER


Readers, please welcome Emelle Gamble to the blog for an interview. Don't miss her giveaways nearer the bottom! She’s been writing fiction her whole life—her first story when she was only five. Heavens, I was reading comic books and only imagining stories when I was five, not writing them down. 

Here’s the interview.

Caroline: Emelle, tell us something about growing up.

Emelle: I’m a Southern California girl, the oldest of three, a slightly nerdy kind of girl who always had her nose in a book and her head in the clouds. I wanted to be an actress until I was twenty (who didn’t, it was LA!) but then accepted reality and decided to find a full-time job that didn’t involve my looks or luck and that very hard on your ego work it took to be a working actor. So I finished college and took a full time job with ‘the phone company’ and was blessed to become a wife and mother. 

Caroline: The phone company is a great job, especially in past decades. Who are your favorite authors and favorite genres?

Emelle: I love mystery and books about love and families. I love books that mix all three. I love the authors I’ve loved my whole life, Mary Stewart and Victoria Holt, Rosamunde Pilcher and PD James, Sue Grafton and Walter Mosley, along with a slew of romance writers, among them my critique partners Mary Blayney, Elaine Fox, Lavinia Kent, and newcomer Evie Owens, whose first novella, The Psychic Detective, combines all three of my favorite elements in a magical way that will make you yearn for the next installment the way I yearn for the next installment of Downtown Abbey.

Caroline: I’ll check out Evie Owens. What’s your favorite way to relax and recharge?

Emelle: I need to get out of my house (where my writing office is) to relax or I feel a pull like a giant, scary magnet to come back and stare at my computer screen. So a weekend away, a beach, time with hubby where part of my brain isn’t actively plotting and or planning dinner, is my favorite. And my only real hobby is reading, and watching HGTV. Love those Property Brothers!

Caroline: Now you’ve mentioned two of my favorite TV shows: "Downton Abbey" and "Property Brothers." Do you have a favorite quote that sums up how you feel about life?

Emelle: "A goal without a plan is just a wish." Antoine de Saint-Exupery
  
It says it all…one step at a time will get you anywhere.

Caroline: How long have you been writing?

Emelle: Forever. Not kidding. I’ve been published since 1990, took off 10 years and got back into print in 2012.

Caroline: Congratulations and welcome back. Where do you prefer to write? Do you need quiet, music, solitude?
Emelle: Dead quite, no one in the house, is the best. I am then allowed to walk around muttering dialogue, doing chores, sit at the computer on an off for hours. Always a desktop. I’m really old school!

Caroline: I also prefer my desktop, but use a laptop on rare occasions. Are you a plotter or a panzer?

Emelle: Can’t imagine just sitting and writing without a roadmap. I always start with a title, a character and the end of the story. I try and follow Michael Hague’s wonderful ‘Hero’s Journey’ outline, and I use note cards.

Caroline: I’m also a plotter. Do you use real events or persons in your stories or as an inspiration for stories?

Emelle: HA! Who doesn’t? We write and give readers our view of everything around us. While imagination is of course the key ingredient, I don’t know any authors who don’t base even imagined werewolves and vampires on real people, either in their life or the news.

Caroline: Do you set daily writing goals? Do you get a chance to write every day?

Emelle: I don’t ‘get a chance’ to write every day. I write every day. It is my job. I set no other goals than that…as a small press and indie author now, I also have to contend with running the small business that author’s must run now to provide marketing for their books. It’s a 7 day a week commitment.

Caroline: It is a heavy commitment, but I love my job. What do you hope your writing brings to readers?

Emelle: Stories and ideas and people that make you think about yourself and entertain you. Novels that ring true, that a reader reaches the end of and says, “Yes, I believe this!”.  Even if the story includes a touch of the paranormal or a ghost, the characters must be believably motivated to act as they do. I work hardest of all on this.

Caroline: What long-term plans do you have for your career?

Emelle: To not give-up in this insane time.

Caroline: Would you like to tell us what you’re working on now?

Emelle: I am writing a book with the working title of KISS ME TWICE. It’s a story of a woman resisting going to her 15 year college reunion, and coping with her mother’s ascent into Alzheimers. HA! I just reread that and thought, boy, what a downer! So let me add there is a robust plot full of quirky ex-classmates and a certain gorgeous old boyfriend named Max Bergman. It’s all about memory and love.

Caroline: We cloak our downer stories with humor. What advice would you give to unpublished authors?

Emelle: All the clichés are true. Write every day. Make it a habit. It is your job. Rewrite, read aloud, join a critique group with people you trust to tell you the truth without any malice. And be prepared to get rejected. And remember what my darling husband, Phil-the-fist, told me years ago, “You don’t fail unless you quit.”

Caroline: What’s a fun fact readers wouldn’t know about you?

Emelle: When I worked for Pacific Telephone, Clint Eastwood sent me flowers for moving a telephone booth so his stunt motorcycle driver wouldn’t kill himself. I’ve still got the enclosed florist card.

Caroline: I am impressed. Share something about you that would surprise or shock readers.

Emelle: I was married to George Clooney. (You didn’t say it had to be true, did you?)

Caroline: You have me there. Is your book a series?

Emelle: No, but I’ve written a prequel to MOLLY HARPER, called DUETS. It was first released in the anthology ONCE AND FOREVER with four other novellas by my wonderful critique partners. DUETS is now available in a separate edition, and is included in the paperback edition of MOLLY HARPER as a bonus to my readers.

Caroline: Can you give readers a blurb about your book?

Here’s a recent Amazon review from a reader that I think gets it right…

Molly Harper was an exceptionally good story. Right away I was drawn into the lives of the characters. On the first page we meet Anne Sullivan, who nervously is awaiting Norma Wintz. Norma and Anne have a connection that will be one of the catalysts for this fast moving, easy to read, engrossing book that affects the lives of Molly Harper, Norma and Anne.

Molly is a modern 'Movie Star', married to another popular movie star and the world believes that her life is a fairy tale. Molly's life is in turmoil, her Mother is ill, her husband is cheating on her and tells her over the phone that their marriage is over. That's just the beginning of this powerful story that centralizes around Molly but all the characters involved have their own stories and feelings. Life is not always as it seems. Hidden truths and secrets are the vehicle that drives this story. This book has all the elements that make a great story, love between parents and child, siblings , old friends and lovers. Hats off to Ms Gamble for a enjoyable, sometimes tearful, but hopeful story that I truly enjoyed reading.

Caroline: How about an excerpt?

Emelle: Here it is.

Anne Sullivan looked down at her watch.
One twenty-one p.m. Norma Wintz was twenty minutes late.
Anne leaned back against the banquette and avoided making eye contact with the waitress hovering at the periphery of her vision. She folded her hands together and imagined her face looked tight as cellophane stretched over a bowl of tuna salad.
She shouldn’t have come, she thought as she glanced around the unfamiliar restaurant. It was all glass and mirrors; chock full of shockingly beautiful Californians surely leading shockingly exciting lives. People who wouldn’t understand a widowed middle-aged woman from Potomac, Maryland breaking into sobs and intruding on their lunch experience.
Which was probably what she was going to do once Norma arrived, Anne thought.
After all, it was the first time Anne would lay eyes on the woman who adopted her baby thirty-five years ago.

Caroline: That excerpt is gripping and should sell a lot of books. Where can readers find your books?

Emelle:



Paperback of both stories: http://www.amazon.com/Molly-Harper-Emelle-
Gamble/dp/1495437701/ref=la_B00DXZ2SJA

Caroline: How can readers learn more about you?

Emelle: Check my links at the end of the post.

Caroline: Is there anything else you’d like readers to know about you?


Emelle: Come like my Facebook Author Page and sign-up for my newsletter before March 31, 2014 and you could win an Amazon Kindle Paperwhite!

Emelle will be awarding a $50 Amazon GC to a randomly drawn commenter during this tour. A digital copy of Molly Harper will be awarded to 3 randomly drawn commenters also during this tour.





Molly Harper
by Emelle Gamble


MOLLY HARPER Blurb:

Movie star Molly Harper has it all, beauty, success in her field, and a loving family and marriage to actor Ben Delmonico. Norma Wintz, Molly’s mother, has it all, a lovely life style and two children who adore her, and a respite from the battle against cancer she’s been fighting. Anne Sullivan, at age fifty, is optimistic that her move to sunny Santa Barbara, California, will allow her to be closer to her youngest son and his family, and help her start her life anew after the death of her beloved husband.

But all three of these women, despite their considerable blessings, are plunged into turmoil when the most intimate of secrets that ties their lives together is revealed. At this same time, Molly Harper is confronted with the news that her marriage to actor Ben Delmonico is over. As she navigates this heartbreak and tries to keep the personal details of the drama off the front pages of the newspapers, Molly must also find a way to once and forever negotiate a way forward with her ex- lover and best friend, the volatile and compelling Cruz Morales.

How each of these characters handles the resulting upheaval in their own life, and in their relationships with one another, forms the compelling story of family, secrets and trust in the romantic women’s fiction novel, MOLLY HARPER.


Excerpt from MOLLY HARPER:
  
When the doorbell rang, Cruz Morales froze. Carefully he set his beer down and glanced out the kitchen window.

He didn’t like what he saw.

He walked to the front entrance of Norma’s house, leaving the pan of chicken and tarragon burbling on a low burner. The soft sounds of Santana playing on the stereo in Molly’s room floated toward him on the evening breeze.

Cruz opened the front door to two uniformed Santa Barbara policeman.

“Officers.” Cruz wiped his hands on the dishtowel he’d stuck in the waistband of his jeans.

The policemen’s faces changed from officious to wary at being confronted by a six-foot-three Hispanic male with a ponytail, tattoos and two gold rings hanging from his right ear.

His bulging biceps beneath the soft old t-shirt didn’t help their comfort level.

Cruz put his hands on his hips and waited. He knew he looked threatening, ugly even, with the scars and disfigurement to the left side of his face.

But he didn’t mind how he looked. Ugly scared people, and kept them away.

Even police.

“Can I help you?” He reminded himself not to move quickly. He’d ended up spread-eagled on the ground more than once in his life for spooking a rookie gringo.

“Is this the Wintz home?” The older of the two men spoke, his right hand on his nightstick.

“Yes. It is.” Cruz offered nothing more. He learned over the years that the best way to protect Molly’s privacy was not to give out gratuitous information.

The cop cleared his throat. “May I ask your name?”

“Cruz Morales.”

“And you are…?”

“I’m a friend of the family.”

“Is that your vehicle out there?” The younger police waved toward the truck in the driveway.

Cruz nodded.

The police looked at each other. “We’ve been trying to contact Miss Molly Harper by phone, but she didn’t answer her cell,” the first cop said. “Is she here?”

“What’s the problem?” Cruz asked.

“I’m afraid I need to save my information for Miss Harper.” 

“Cruz, who is it? Is it Mr. Garcia?” Molly hollered from her bedroom.

“Come in.” Cruz stepped back. He turned and called out, “Molly, there are two policemen here who want to see you. Get dressed and come out here.”

The young cop smirked as he walked by Cruz. He had red hair and freckles, and his shirt was about an inch too big around his skinny neck.

Cruz lifted his chin. It was obvious the rookie knew who Molly was, and was busy imagining her getting dressed.

“Take a seat in the library.” Cruz pointed. “It’s right through the archway there.”

The older man, who wore a name-tag reading ‘Sgt Purcell’ nodded. “Okay. Thanks, Mr. Cruz. Please bring Miss Harper to us, whenever she’s ready.”

Cruz watched them walk across the foyer, their black boots squeaking on the tile.

He didn’t mind that the cop got his name wrong. It was typical arrogance. But Cruz began to feel dread build inside. It always happened when he wasn’t sure what would happen next.

He opened the front door and checked the driveway and yard. There was nothing outside that indicated any of the media assholes were sniffing around yet. His truck was blocked in by the patrol car, but no other vehicles were in sight.

Molly hurried down the hallway. “What’s wrong? Why are the police here? Did Mother call?”

Her face was shiny and red from crying. She looked like she was seventeen, he thought. The age she was when he first fell in love with her. He didn’t remember a lot of things from his past, but he always remembered that.

Cruz closed the door. “No one called the house. But the police said they tried your cell.” He took her left arm gently. “Let’s go see what they want.”

“God, do you think something’s happened to Mother?” Her eyes were wide with panic.

“Don’t borrow trouble. They didn’t say that.”

She didn’t move for a moment, and then she put her arm around his back and leaned against him.

Molly was trembling. Cruz knew there was no way to protect her from whatever was coming. But at least he was here.

Because she called me.

Because she needs help.

She needs me.

Everything in his life had changed over the last three years. Everything except that. Cruz squeezed Molly closer and guided her into the library.

“This is Molly Harper,” Cruz announced. “What’s going on?”


Emelle Gamble, Author

Emelle Gamble was a writer at an early age, bursting with the requisite childhood stories of introspection. These evolved into bad teen poetry and worse short stories. She took her first stab at full length fiction in an adult education writing class when her kids were in bed.  As M.L. Gamble, she published several romantic suspense novels with Harlequin. She has contracted with Soul Mate Publishing for SECRET SISTER, published in the summer of 2013, and DATING CARY GRANT, a March 2014 release.

ONCE AND FOREVER, an anthology which includes the novella Duets, came out on November 1st. MOLLY HARPER, a full length novel starring the characters from DUETS 3 years later was released by Posh Publishing in January.

Emelle lives in suburban Washington D.C. with her husband, ‘Phil-the-fist’, her hero of thirty years, and two orange cats, Lucy and Bella. These girls, like all good villains, have their reasons for misbehaving. Her daughter, Olivia, and son, Allen, are happily launched on their own and contributing great things to society, their mother’s fondest wish.

Review Quotes:

Praise for SECRET SISTER

Along with being a very unique and captivating plot, SECRET SISTER offers a shocking turn of the paranormal kind. So if you are the type of person that wants ordinary romance in a book, you won't find that here. This is a story of friendship, family, and most of all, true love and what those things can mean. I cannot recommend SECRET SISTER strongly enough… “ Fresh Fiction, Fresh Reviews

"If you're looking for a typical women's fiction/romance, don't look here... this story has a twist of the paranormal that will have you willingly stretching your belief in order to enjoy the plot. Emelle Gamble has created a story that will tear your heart out."  Long and Short Reviews

Links:




Twitter: @emellegamble 


SECRET SISTER by Emelle Gamble is now available on Amazon!  http://amzn.to/17J2Bn6

ONCE AND FOREVER  an anthology with Emelle Gamble’s novella, DUETS, is now available on Amazon!    http://amzn.to/1h9fZWv

***Remember to leave a comment to enter Emelle's drawing for a $50 gift card or a copy of MOLLY HARPER.

Thanks for stopping by!

20 comments:

Goddess Fish Promotions said...

Thanks for hosting!

Goddess Fish Promotions said...

Readers, leave a comment or ask Emelle a question for a chance to win a $50 Amazon Gift Card!

Emelle Gamble said...

Caroline...thanks for the great interview questions. I had to really think about a few of them. And as a fellow author, thank you for sharing space on your blog. Generosity from other writers is one of the unpublicized elements of this business that helps us get through the bad spots.

davesmsperfect said...

Great excerpt! Thanks for sharing your book with us. :)

davesmsperfectATyahooDOTcom

teena3940 said...

Great interview. Can't wait to read this great looking book. Thanks for sharing with all of us..

Elise-Maria Barton said...

There's lots shocking about me but I 'll go with something that won't stand your hair on end: Sometimes I don't answer my phone when my children call. I purposely ignore them because I get worn jout by their drama. The drama they have at 30 is worse than the angst they had as teens lol.

Fantastic post today, thanks for sharing.

ilookfamous at yahoo dot com

Karen H in NC said...

Really enjoyed reading your interview and the excerpt of your latest book. Sounds like a story I would like to read.

kareninnc at gmail dot com

Catherine Lee said...

Emelle...I am SHOCKED that you were married to George Clooney. He never told me about you! :)

Rita said...

I enjoyed the interview, thank you.

Kit3247(at)aol(dot)com

LadyoftheMoon Tina said...

The most shocking thing in my past is also one of the most embarrassing. I went to an RT convention and sat in on a session with some authors. One of the questions was what is the most shocking sex locations you have had. I went beet red as my mother was sitting next to me and her response was a couch. With most the others being a backseat of a car. When even my mother would not let me get away with not answering and I told them a kids playground, upside down on the monkeybars and the teeter totter. Well you can imagine from there and when I was asked to sign a release to be able to use the information as part of a book from both the author, it was shocking to know and see in print some of my past in a book.
Now, what is your shocking past and not George Clooney?

Caroline Clemmons said...

Emelle, thank you for sharing with us today. I enjoyed your interview and look forward to reading your book.

Emelle Gamble said...

Davd, Teena, Karen and Rita! thanks for the posts and the kind words. MOLLY HARPER is also available in paperback and includes the bonus novella DUETS. I've been told by a few readers they are buying for gifts for their Mothers on mother's day. I hope you all get to read it. Let me know what you think, and great good luck in the drawing!

Emelle Gamble said...

Elise-Maria, I hear you. And I totally agree that the dramas of high school, etc. can certainly be outdone by what are kids do as 'grown ups!'. Knock wood, mine are settling into an non-drama period, so here's hoping the same for yours. Thanks for the post!

Emelle Gamble said...

Tina - Lady of the Moon. Wow, that was a great post. I can't imagine how tough that ride home was with your mother. HA! Okay, other than being married to George Clooney once (not), a shocking thing about me is I cut 19 days of gym class when I was in high school because I was afraid of the rings and pommel horse. And during those 19 days I lived in total fear I was going to get called to the office. On day 20 I couldn't stand it so I went and confessed to the principal. HA! Had to take PE in summer school. How shocking is that? Thanks for the great post. XXX Emelle

Emelle Gamble said...

Tina - Lady of the Moon. Wow, that was a great post. I can't imagine how tough that ride home was with your mother. HA! Okay, other than being married to George Clooney once (not), a shocking thing about me is I cut 19 days of gym class when I was in high school because I was afraid of the rings and pommel horse. And during those 19 days I lived in total fear I was going to get called to the office. On day 20 I couldn't stand it so I went and confessed to the principal. HA! Had to take PE in summer school. How shocking is that? Thanks for the great post. XXX Emelle

168d7130-34d4-11e2-91ad-000bcdcb5194 said...

Very intriguing excerpt and interview!

vitajex@aol dot com

MomJane said...

A lot to read. Loved the excerpts, and the commets.

Mary Preston said...

Such a great post thank you. I've never heard of Property Brothers.

marypres(AT)gmail(DOT)com

Emelle Gamble said...

Oh my gosh, Mary Preston. You're missing out! Drew and Jonathan...tall, dark, hunky and they can rip sinks and toilets out and crete your dream bathroom in less time than it takes me to do 3 loads of laundry. HA! check them out. And thanks for posting. XXX

Brandi said...

Great interview! =) Your next book that your writing sounds pretty good,.. & now I can't wait until that comes out!! lol. =)

Brandi
BLeigh1130 at yahoo dot com