InDreamsThanks to the wonderful Katherine Givens for a smooth handoff

If you like to read romance novels of all genres, join the writers of Romance Weekly as we go behind the scenes of our books and tell all…about our writing. Each week we answer the same questions. Once you’ve read my blog, the link below will direct you to the next writer’s blog. Tell your friends and please ask questions or make comments. We’d love to hear from you.

And thanks to the lovely and talented Tessa Gray, author of The Dreamcatchers series, for this week’s questions.Stars




1. Do any characters you’ve written into your books remind you of yourself? Explain which ones and why.

My female characters are a blend of many women, not one in particular. I would love to have the quick dry wit of some of my heroines, or better yet look like them– now that would be fabulous. But seriously, when someone writes fiction they pull from who and what they know, where they’ve been, what they’ve seen or heard in their lifetime. My family is flush with strong, capable women, a plethora of virtual Wonder Women. And I gravitate towards funny and charming friends, all of whom help to shape my characters.Wonder Woman

Scar, the heroine in my current WIP is a cross between my daughter, and my daughter-in-law. Scar is complex, interesting, and sets boundaries for those around her. And, much like my daughter and daughter-in-law, she has a mind of her own and rarely does what I want. My fervent wish for the heroine in my next book is to have my granddaughter’s dry wit. So far, that dream’s been as elusive as Wonder Woman’s physique. I don’t find my characters to be much different than my grown children. They have their own agendas and take very little guidance from me.

2. Was there a teacher or mentor in your life who helped nurture your writing?

CoupleMy most avid nurturer is my husband. He encourages, cajoles and soothes me through this process with love and patience that can only come from a soul mate. At six o’clock each evening we meet in the garden and review our day. We call it our happy hour and celebrate each small victory; a successful day of writing 2,000 words, a stellar critique, and just as important, he talks me through those reviews that sting. My guy’s amazing.

My friends, especially those who write and edit, as well as one very special instructor, are my ongoing mentors. I find writers to be a nurturing lot. We celebrate the accomplishments of our cohorts, cheer them on, pat them on the back every chance we get, because we understand how this gig works.

“We have to continually be jumping off cliffs and developing our wings on the way down.”
― Kurt VonnegutKurt


3. Every author has that moment when they doubt their ability to write. When that happens to you, how do you pull yourself up by the bootstraps and continue? What do you do to inspire YOURSELF?

Yes. There are days of self-doubt.

I think Earnest Hemingway said it best– “The first draft of anything is shit.”

Girl COmpThere are days when I think everything I write fits into that category. Then there are good days when writing is easy and the time in front of my computer melts away. On those days all the terrible ones are forgotten, and once again I define myself as a writer.

To inspire myself on my bad days, I write. I write when I don’t want to write. I write when I’m bored with writing. I write when I don’t have a clue how to proceed with my story. I take the sage advice of Stephen King and I write every single day. And if that doesn’t work, I set my alarm for three o’clock (yes, in the morning) and I stumble to my desk and I write. Because some famous writer once said, (I’d have to look it up to see who this brilliant person was), I’m paraphrasing– Whatever you wake up and write in the middle of the night will not have to be tossed away. And while I may not keep 100% of what I write at three in the morning, I do tend to keep something. And like magic my muse likes me again.

Follow me and swing back around to the awesome Victoria Barbour, author of Against Her Rules and so many, many more great romance novels. Check out her website and learn more about her Heart’s Ease series of novels set in Newfoundland.Vic barbour

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