Fresh FIction Box Not To Miss
Katee Robert | Exclusive Interview: NEON GODS
Author Guest / June 3, 2021

Danielle: Hi, Katee! Welcome back to Fresh Fiction and congrats on the release of NEON GODS! This is a Hades/Persephone retelling. What appealed to you about this classic Greek Myth?   Katee: Thank you so much for having me! I was really excited to write a Hades and Persephone story because it’s the framework for so many of the stories we tell today. You can see echoes of the dynamics in a good portion of dark romances, and I was really excited to intentionally retell the myth through that lens as a contemporary dark romance. One of the things I love about your novels is how unabashedly sexy they are! NEON GODS is no different, and there are some really poignant and frank discussions about consent, birth control, and boundaries—which I think many readers will appreciate and enjoy. How do you balance the fun sexytimes and the important conversations that go along with them?  Honestly, this might sound a little strange, but I view those conversations as a different sort of foreplay. To me, there’s nothing sexier than a partner (or several partners) discussing how to make the experience enjoyable and safe for everyone involved. There’s a level of caring there, even before…

Preslaysa Williams | Exclusive Interview: A LOWCOUNTRY BRIDE
Author Guest / June 1, 2021

Danielle: Welcome to Fresh Fiction, Preslaysa! Congrats on the release of your debut, A LOWCOUNTRY BRIDE! Can you tell us about your journey into publishing? Preslaysa: I started seriously writing fiction in 2008. At the time, I knew nothing about novel writing, but I was passionate about it. I first dabbled in young adult and middle grade fiction. Then I decided to focus on writing romance. Little did I know that I chose a challenging genre to write! It took me about 9 years to become skilled at writing a romantic arc, character arcs for two love interests, and a plot arc. All three have to be woven together seamlessly. (And there are more requirements for subgenres like paranormal romance, inspirational romance, erotica, or historical romance!). I entered my manuscripts in writing contests, and they would final or win those contests. Seeing my stories make the final rounds (or even win!) was a very encouraging part of my writing career.   In 2012 (very early in my journey), I received an offer of publication for A LOWCOUNTRY BRIDE, but after much thought, I didn’t feel comfortable with signing on the dotted line. So, I didn’t. I not only learned how…

Michelle Major | Exclusive Interview: WILDFLOWER SEASON
Author Guest / May 25, 2021

Danielle: Welcome to Fresh Fiction, Michelle! We are excited to chat with you today. Please tell us a bit about your new series, Carolina Girls.   Michelle: Thank you so much for having me visit today—I’m excited to be here! The Carolina Girls series is a fun spinoff from the original Magnolia Sisters series set in the fictional town of Magnolia, North Carolina. The series features an unlikely friendship between three women all working to start over and create a new life for themselves. The stories are romances at their heart but also explore the importance of friendship, community and finding the right place to call home.  We love a smalltown setting! What do you love most about Magnolia, North Carolina? If you were to spend a day there, where would you visit?       Well, since I currently live in Colorado, which is a beautiful—but very landlocked state—I’d definitely make a trip to the beach outside of Magnolia. The town is based on a few coastal towns we visited when I was a kid vacationing every year in the Outer Banks area of North Carolina and also further south to Hilton Head, South Carolina. I hope I’ve been able to infuse Magnolia with…

Paul Rudnick | Exclusive Interview: PLAYING THE PALACE
Author Guest / May 24, 2021

Danielle: Welcome to Fresh Fiction, Paul! We are thrilled to have you here. Can you tell us what inspired your new book, PLAYING THE PALACE?   Paul:  Two things inspired PLAYING THE PALACE: first, I wanted to explore a passionate and uproarious romance between two people of very different social backgrounds, namely Carter Ogden, a lonely New York City event planner, and Prince Edgar, the openly gay Crown Prince of England. Beyond that, I wanted to create an all-out romantic comedy, to combat despair and celebrate the glory of falling in love despite seemingly insurmountable obstacles. How do you feel your background in playwrighting and screenwriting influenced writing this novel?   Writing for the theater, the screen and the page can be very different pursuits, but they do inform each other. I want PLAYING THE PALACE to have the pure fun of a great musical comedy, with the heart of a bigscreen romance. There’s a cast of delightful characters throughout PLAYING THE PALACE that add to the hijinks Carter and Prince Edgar find themselves involved in… do you have a favorite side character, who really stood out to you while you were writing this book?  I hate to play favorites, but…

Suzanne Woods Fisher | Exclusive Interview: AT LIGHTHOUSE POINT
Author Guest / May 7, 2021

AT LIGHTHOUSE POINT is the third book in your Three Sisters Island series. What keeps you coming back to this setting and these characters? What do you do to keep it fresh and evolving for you as you write?  To be candid, this island never gets old! There’s the natural beauty, the quirky locals, the pull of a small town. And then there’s just something about an island slows people down and makes them rethink a few things. I had more trouble wrapping the series up to say goodbye. The island, the people, all seemed so real. Faith, Family, and Friendships are important themes in your work. How do you approach these aspects in AT LIGHTHOUSE POINT? What do you hope readers take away from these themes in your book?  I hope that readers never feel like I’m whacking them on the head with the Bible. My goal is simply to nudge them to invite God into the conversation of their life. Once that foundation finds its footing, then other important pieces of life, like family and friendships, fall into place with more purpose.    Blaine is a character who is returning to Three Sisters Island. She has some things to work through…

Glynis Peters | Exclusive Interview: THE FORGOTTEN ORPHAN
Author Guest / May 5, 2021

Welcome to Fresh Fiction, Glynis! We are excited to chat with you today. Please tell us a little about yourself and your new book, THE FORGOTTEN ORPHAN.  Hello, thanks for inviting me along! I’m 63 years old, married since I was 21 and am a mother of three adults. I am also a grandmother to four. Three granddaughters and one grandson. I’m a carer for my mother and am a retired nurse. I live by the sea in England. The town of Harwich was also the home of the captain of The Mayflower, Christopher Jones.  I enjoy fishing and when I get the opportunity, cross-stitch. What do you think appeals to readers about novels set during World War II? What do you love writing about this time period?  As a reader of the genre myself, I am drawn to the strength and resilience of the people who fought for our freedom. It is a story we cannot ignore and one which can be told in many different ways. Each country involved has a different part to play and it makes for interesting reading.   Your main character, Maisie Reynolds, was raised in an orphanage, was separated from her twin brother,…

Georgia Clark | Exclusive Interview: IT HAD TO BE YOU
Author Guest / May 4, 2021

Danielle: Welcome to Fresh Fiction, Georgia, and congrats on the release of your new book, IT HAD TO BE YOU! What has it been like working on a book and releasing it during a pandemic?  Georgia: Thanks so much, happy to be here! Of course, the past year has been a sh*tshow and writing about fictional people’s love lives during a global pandemic feels a bit like playing music on the deck of Titanic as it plunges into the North Atlantic. I feel extremely lucky I was able to do what I love—write—during lockdown, and that my close friends and family made it through. It was a difficult but valuable perspective shift. IT HAD TO BE YOU begins with a bombshell—Liv’s husband unexpectedly passes away AND he had a secret girlfriend… on top of these revelations, the successful wedding planning business she had with her husband has been left to both her and Savannah, his younger mistress. Where did you get the idea for this hilarious setup?   To be honest, most set-ups emerge as hazy, dreamlike things—a combination of my life, what I’m paying attention to, what I’m reading/watching/daydreaming about—but okay here goes: I wanted a set-up that’d let…

Amelia Grey | Exclusive Excerpt: HOW TO TRAIN YOUR EARL
Author Guest / April 28, 2021

Danielle: Welcome back to Fresh Fiction, Amelia! Congrats on the release of the third book in your First Comes Love series, HOW TO TRAIN YOUR EARL. Amelia: Thank you for having me. I’m absolutely delighted to be here.  What do you think brings people back to historical romance?  For me and I assume for most, it’s the intrigue of living in a different era, learning about something that is old but new to us. Because I’m very settled and contented in the life I live in, it’s exciting and entertaining to read about a time when life was unlike what I’m used to. I especially love the pageantry, the clothing, and the manners of the Regency. Zane, the Earl of Blacknight, is a notorious rake and rogue. What did you love about writing him as a character?   Zane was very comfortable being the black sheep of the Blacknight family. When he became the earl and head of the family, he didn’t think he could do it and no one else in the family thought he could either. I loved writing about how he dealt with his meddling uncles and his younger cousin’s dangerous troubles. Most of all I loved how he was…

Renee Rosen | Exclusive Interview: THE SOCIAL GRACES
Author Guest / April 21, 2021

Welcome back to Fresh Fiction, Renee! The last time you were here, we discussed Park Avenue Summer, and this time we’re chatting about THE SOCIAL GRACES. Can you tell us what drew you to write about Gilded Age New York?  Several years ago, I wrote another novel about Marshall Field, the Chicago retail tycoon called WHAT THE LADY WANTS which was set during the Gilded Age. I really enjoyed that time period and wanted to revisit that era. The gowns, the balls, the excess, and etiquette, which runs from practical to absurd, have always fascinated me. When I stumbled upon Caroline Astor and Alva Vanderbilt’s stories, I knew I could use New York’s Gilded Age as backdrop to create a completely different type of novel, filled with fun, juicy scandals, and all the glamour. The Astors and the Vanderbilts are synonymous with high society drama. Was there anything truly outrageous you learned through your research that was hard to believe actually happened?  Oh, my goodness, where to begin!!! I was really surprised by how understated and refined the Knickerbockers, (the old money and original settler of New York) were in the beginning. It wasn’t until the Nouveau Riche (representing the…

Ruby Barrett | Exclusive Interview: HOT COPY
Author Guest / April 13, 2021

Danielle: Welcome to Fresh Fiction, Ruby! Congrats on your debut release, HOT COPY. What made you decided to tackle a workplace romance?  Ruby: Thank you! Very excited to be here! Well, mostly I wanted to write a desk sex scene… But more seriously, I wanted to take a swing at existing power dynamics and I also think that workplaces are a common setting for a lot of real-life romance. Combine all of that together and Hot Copy was the final product! Corrine has a reputation for being ruthless and “icy,” but she feels like she is doing what needs to get done to make it to the top. Of course, this all comes with its own consequences as a result. What do you think readers will relate to in Corrine? How does Corrine have to grapple with the decisions she’s made to further her career?  Corrine is an egg. She’s hard on the outside (she has to be) but soft on the inside (like a lot of us are) and I think that a lot of people are familiar with having to put forward a hard outer shell in order to protect our more vulnerable selves, whether that be in a…