Monday, February 27, 2012

Welcome Kira Sinclair!

Kira Sinclair, Awesome Author and Mom
  1. Today I'm thrilled to have author Kira Sinclair here on with us at the Authorial Moms! Kira writes sexy Harlequin Blazes, and I'm dying to see the answers to some of her questions, so let's get to it! Welcome to the Authorial Moms blog, Kira! Tell us a little about yourself. How many kids do you have? How old are they? 
Thanks for having me! At first I read this question as how old are you…and my kneejerk reaction was to protest.  I’m currently wondering when I got old enough that I don’t want to share the number. J  Anyway, I live on a small farm in North Alabama with my wonderful husband and our two girls.  Sweet Pea is 10 and Baby Girl is 7. 
  1. What do you write? How many books have you written/published? How old are they?
There’s that age question again. J I write for Harlequin Blaze.  My 5th, 6th and 7th books (Bring It On, Take It Down & Rub It In) are out Feb, March and April of this year.  I sold my first book, Whispers in the Dark, in June 2007 and it hit the shelves in Aug 2008.  I guess that makes it…5 years old if you count from when I sold it.
  1. Tell me about a typical day. How do you write with kids around? Or do you have to ship them off to school or grandparents’ houses to get anything done?
I’m not sure there is a typical day.  But I am sure that I’m very lucky! I have a day job, but I work for my dad and his partner.  While I often have to write at night and on weekends when I’m on deadline, I do get a lot accomplished at work during down time.  And for those days I absolutely have to work at home my husband is amazing.  He occupies the kids and does all the cooking.  I couldn’t do this without him!
  1. Did you write before you had kids, or after? What changed with your writing when you had kids?
I started writing a month after my oldest daughter turned 1. She was becoming more and more independent and I found myself needing something for ME.  She came to the office with me for the first several years and I’d often spend her naptime with her asleep in my lap while I was typing away holding her.  I sorta miss those moments.

I did experience a period of writer’s block when I was pregnant with Baby Girl.  Although the words came back about the time she hit 6 weeks old.  You’d think having a newborn might have been tougher than being pregnant, but that didn’t seem to be the case for me.  And as the girls get older it becomes easier for me to find time to write even with them home.  They don’t want to sit in mommy’s lap and watch cartoons anymore.  They want to play their DS, Xbox, read a book or watch their own TV.
  1. How old will one or more of your children have to be before they’re allowed to read your books?
Well, I’ve told them they can’t read them until they’re 18.  I started reading Harlequins when I was 12 or 13 though.  I don’t have any problem with them reading other Harlequin books – including books in the Blaze line – when they’re younger.  But I think reading Mom’s books just adds another layer I’m not ready to deal with.  J
  1. Becoming an author means having a public persona. How do you combine motherhood with the demands of a public life? Do you feature your kids, keep them shielded under pseudonyms, or leave them out of the equation entirely? Have they asserted their opinion(s) on this matter?
I write under a pseudonym specifically because of my girls…although most everyone in their life knows that I write.  But I wanted them to have the option of telling their friends/classmates/teachers or not.  Middle school and high school can be difficult enough; I wanted to give them as much control over that as I could. Online I never refer to my girls by their name.  They have nicknames – Sweet Pea and Baby Girl – which I occasionally use in real life, but not often.  I never post pictures of them anywhere.  Even my husband has a nickname – Birdzilla (It’s a long story). And while I’ve given the decision to my girls, they’ve used it to tell anyone who will listen that their mom is an author.  My girls especially love starting a new school year and telling their teachers what I do.  Their enthusiasm humbles me.
  1. Most Moms I know have a limited amount of free time. Give me a few reasons why they should dedicate some of that time to your characters. What’s in it for us?
Escape! My newest series – Island Nights – is set on a private Caribbean island.  I don’t know about anyone else, but most days I collapse into bed wishing I could be on some warm, sandy beach.  With this series I got to be there every day while I was working. And of course an emotionally satisfying Happily Ever After.  As a reader that’s what I’m looking for so that’s what I deliver.  The ability to go on an emotional journey with my characters and come out at the end smiling because they’re happy and I get to experience the same bubbling sense of joy right along with them. 
  1. Let’s have a little fun with fill-in-the-blanks. “The floor of my kitchen is so ___ you can ___ it.”
The floor in my kitchen is so messed up you can see the subfloor through it.  Seriously.  Our dog ripped the linoleum up off the floor and I haven’t gotten around to fixing it.  I need to.  But at the moment I have a rug thrown over it so it’s the item on the to do list that’s out of sight out of mind. 
And I want to know why it was easier for me to tell y’all about my messed up floor than how old I was.
  1. In what way have you turned into your mother? How are you coping with it?
Hmm…this is a hard one.  Honestly, I’m exactly like my mom.  Which is why we butted heads during my teenage years.  The funny thing is that my oldest daughter is exactly like I am…and I already know we’re going to have issues when she hits her teens.  I was a good kid and so is Sweet Pea, but I wanted to grow up so quickly and be so independent that I resented being told what to do.  All three of us are stubborn and opinionated and headstrong.  The same qualities that let me know my daughter will be fine no matter what happens in her life are the ones that will make getting through the years on our journey to those moments a little scary.  But I don’t resent the upcoming struggles at all.  They’re going to be worth it because both of my girls will be amazing women – just like my mom and just like I hope I am.
  1. What’s up next for you?
In the near future my Island Nights series hits the shelves – Bring It On in Feb, Take It Down in March and Rub It In in April.  But I’m already at work on my next Blazes…a series of loosely connected books all set around a small Southern town.  I’m loving the chance to come back to my own small town Southern roots.  And I’m absolutely in love with my current hero – a wounded soldier.  There’s nothing I like more than a tortured bad boy who’s try desperately to be good…and failing miserably thanks to the temptation of a headstrong heroine. 
  1. Where can we find you and your books online?
You can visit my website at or at
And my newest books are available here:
Bring It On

Take It Down

Rub It In

Friday, February 24, 2012

The fabulous Allie Plieter
Today I'm welcoming back the fabulous Allie Pleiter! I'm so excited that Allie and I are going to be doing a presentation entitled "Making a Career out of Category" at the upcoming Chicago-North RWA Spring Fling conference (See the sidebar for links). Today, though, she's talking about her latest release, Falling for the Fireman. Take it away, Allie!

I don’t cite myself as the “slightly untidy mother of two” in my bio for nothing.  There’s a canyon-wide gap of difference between “organized” and “neat.”

As I write this, I sit in icky track pants (I’m getting on the treadmill in a minute, and if I don’t write before I start my day, my day takes off with my brain and no writing gets done!) at a sticky kitchen counter.  There are dishes in the sink because I needed to research which trees are native to Nebraska.  I threw in a load of laundry, but not before I checked my Twitter feed for mentions of my newly released book.  I haven’t finished my synopsis because my son needs a ride to school while on crutches, and anyone who thinks I’m glamorous should have seen me picking up the dog’s “business” in the yard yesterday.

Still, I’m fabulously fortunate.  It’s important to remember that.  As an authorial mom, I get to meld the two best jobs in the universe.  I have freedoms directing my time and energy that other people would kill for.  I make people all over the country--all over the world--smile when they read my work. Honestly, who could complain when you put it that way?

Well, I can...some days.  It’s hard to convince a non-writer that this stuff is HARD WORK.  When I tell people that there are days writing is like shredding your soul one inch at a time with a rusty cheese grater, well, they look at me funny.

“Mother” and “Writer” have never been anything but synonyms for me.  Both roles seem to draw from the same well.  I’m never happier than my saddest child, and I’m never more satisfied than the progress of my slowest work.  They’re not my jobs, they’re essential parts of me.

Available from Amazon and B&N
And other fine bookstores
So go buy one!
My motherhood experience is deeply imbedded in Falling for the Fireman.  I took the desperation I felt guiding my son through a medical trial (he’s fine now, by the way) and poured it into Jeannie’s challenges with her son.  How could I not?  I hope you’ll find the story deeply touching to you as a mother--it’ll be my finest satisfaction and blessing if you do.

Falling for the Fireman
Harlequin Love Inspired February 2012
ISBN #978-0-373-87725-6

Back Cover Copy:
There's something achingly familiar about the look in fire marshal Chad Owens's eyes. Widowed mom Jeannie Nelworth knows firsthand what it is: loss, hurt and yes—bitterness. Ever since the fire that changed their lives, Jeannie's young son has borne that same look, pushing everyone away. So she's grateful when Chad tries to get through to the boy with the help of his trusty fire station dog.

But the man who's all about safety and prevention keeps himself protected—from loving and losing again. Seems as if Jeannie will have to add his kind, guarded heart to her rebuilding efforts.

Author Bio:
An avid knitter, coffee junkie, and devoted chocoholic, Allie Pleiter writes both fiction and non-fiction.  The enthusiastic but slightly untidy mother of two, Allie spends her days writing books, buying yarn, and finding new ways to avoid housework.  Allie hails from Connecticut, moved to the midwest to attend Northwestern University, and currently lives outside Chicago, Illinois.  The “dare from a friend” to begin writing has produced two parenting books, fourteen novels, and various national speaking engagements on faith, women’s issues, and writing.  Visit her website at or her knitting blog at

Thursday, February 9, 2012

I've been busy!

Sarah M. Anderson
Still Authorial after a month off!
Hi, everyone! *waves*

How have you been? I know Authorial Mom Andrea's been doing pretty good. I'm still thrilled that she sold Baltimore Heat--I read it and I loved it! We may have to have a hero-versus-hero blog at some point.

 It's been a month--okay, more than a month, but who's counting?--since I went on a blog vacation for January. I know I planned to spend the entire month doing nothing but knitting, watching movies, reading books, and eating bonbons.

Alas, it was not to be. I did watch some movies and the entire series of Firefly (swoon!). I read more books last month than I did all last year (as part of judging the RITA national romance contest). I even started a knitting project! I didn't eat too many bonbons, though. Instead, I walked on the treadmill more. It's good for me.

But beyond that, I worked on books. Lots of books--so many, in fact, that I'm going to have to resort to a list to tell you ALL the good news!

1. The follow-up to A Man of His Word is coming July, 2012! A Man of Privilege is now available for pre-order on Amazon here! No cover yet--but it should be up soon. Here's the hype from RT Book Review’s FOREWORDS - THE BOOKS BEFORE THE BUZZ“Sarah Anderson’s upcoming tale The Last Honest Lawyer (the previous title) features a secret witness, an attorney who is trying to do the right thing and a case of judicial corruption that could have far-reaching consequences. We are looking forward to getting our hands on this Harlequin Desire.” 

A Man of His Word
Still available! Order Now!
2. The third book in the series, A Man of Distinction, will be out in September, 2012! Here's the blurb: Nick Longhair left the Red Creek Indian reservation years ago without a look back. He finished law school and took a position with a prominent law firm. But all the money and women in the world couldn’t fill the void left by Tanya Rattling Blanket. One last night of passion with Nick two years ago left Tanya with a secret--a baby named Bear. When Nick comes home, she’s torn between giving into her desire and protecting her son from a man who she knows won’t stay around long.

So that's exciting. I'm hip-deep in revisions and proofing these two awesome Harlequin Desire novels. Both are set in the same time and place as A Man of His Word, and Rosebud pops up in both books. I can't wait to see them on shelves!

But wait! There's more! Much, much more!

3. Just in time for Valentine's Day, 2013, The Rancher's Valentine will be out! I'm writing this right now, and I can tell you that J.R. is positively *dreamy*. Here's the blurb: James Roberts Bradley burned out early. Ten years ago, he walked away from multi-million dollar film roles and disappeared into the Montana back country. As an assistant producer for a blockbuster Western that already has Oscar written all over it, it's Thalia Thorne's job to track Bradley down and sign him to the project. She's used to dealing with Hollywood egos and hardball negotiation tactics. She never expected to find a real-life cowboy who tips his hat and says 'no' with a smile. Can she convince Bradley to take the comeback role of a lifetime? 

4. 2013 will also be the year of the Biker Bolton Boys. You like cowboys and Indians, I know--but I'm going to try something fun and different--Bikers and Indians! 

In July, 2013, the first Bolton brother book will be out. Here's the blurb: Ben Bolton is the CFO of Crazy Horse Choppers, a custom-built shop run by his family. CFO doesn't cover his real job description. His real job is making sure his impulsive younger brother Bobby doesn't sink the company with his wild schemes. His real job is brokering peace between his creative older brother Billy and their mercurial father. When Josey White Plume walks into his office, the last thing he wants to do is hand out donations to some school in the middle of an Indian reservation. But he's about to discover that Josey isn't the kind of woman who takes no for an answer. The only question is, how far will she go to get a yes?

Then, in September, 2013, Ben's older brother Billy will get a story. Here's the blurb: "Wild" Bill Bolton is a biker. He rides bikes. He builds bikes. He eats, sleeps, and breathes bikes. Then his youngest brother Bobby signs their family business up for a 'reality' show and Bill becomes an unwilling reality star. Overnight, business doubles, and then triples. He becomes famous, which is a real pain in the ass. Bikes become less of a refuge and more of an instrument of torture. Then it gets worse. The producers of the show want to capitalize on the shop's 'good will' and film Bill building a bike out at some school his brother Ben sponsors. At first, Bill can't imagine how his life could get any worse, but then he meets Jenny Wahwasuck, a young teacher at the school trying to raise a teenage boy all by herself. Can this instant family be the one thing he's been missing?

So that's it. (As if that weren't enough!) Two books this year, three for next year. I won't say that's all, because there may be some other surprises, but that's more than enough to keep me busy for now!

You may have noticed that Authorial Mom Andrea is posting more regularly. She's going to be taking the Tuesday slot on the blog, and I'm going to be handling Thursday. We're also going to be having more guest posts from other authors and/or moms. This is an exciting time for all of us, and I'm so glad you're along for the ride!