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Sandra Hill Intervewed By celticreign

CSM: Please help me welcome Award Winning Romance Author, Sandra Hill to Romantic Crush Junkies. Sandra, my readers and I are so psyched that one of my go-to authors has dropped by to spend time with us. Thanks so much! Tell us more about yourself. Readers love learning new and interesting things about an author, and this would give you a chance to make them feel close.
SH: Married, mother of four sons, I live in Central Pennsylvania where I divide my time living in a University town and out in our cottage on a fabulous fishing stream. Lifetime writer and reader.

CSM: If you have 2 hours free time tonight, what would you rather do? Why?

SH: Read a book. Honest, it’s what I enjoy most. I watch TV occasionally, but most often lately it is past seasons on DVD of shows I never watched from the beginning. Completed Alias, Lost, Boston Legal, Bones, and now Dexter. Used to love going to estate auctions hunting for antiques and collectibles, but don’t have as much time for that anymore. Still, if antique paintings or Roseville pottery are being offered, I would probably go.

CSM: What kind of books do you love to read? Why?

SH: Romance. All kinds. For humor, I like Susan Elizabeth Phillips and Rachel Gibson. Historical: Mary Balogh, Lisa Kleypas, Jillian Hunter, Loretta Chase. Erotica: Lora Leigh. Other: All of the Beverly Lewis Amish books, especially the Abram’s Daughters series.

CSM: What type of music do you relax to?

SH: I like country music, not necessarily for relaxation, but it makes me smile. And, of course, I grew up on rock ‘n roll. I’m the person who see at a red-light singing along, or dancing on my seat, when a certain song comes on the radio.

CSM: Besides being a total book junkie I’m also a music junkie. When I’m writing I have a sound track playing either in my mind or in my cd player. What’s your sound track? What type of music is on it?

SH: I don’t listen to music as I write. I know that lots of authors do, but it distracts me. What I do sometimes is put headphones on with a Focus Factor tape playing for concentration. Lots of white noise.

CSM: What is your favorite stress reliever?

SH: :-)

CSM: What is your favorite food?

SH: Pasta, good bread, seafood. Check out the recipes in the back of WILD JINX and SO INTO YOU. Both tested in my own kitchen, although I attribute them to Tante Lulu.

CSM: Describe yourself in one word?

SH: Intelligent. Funny you should ask this question. I went to my physician one time, asking for Ritalin. Long story. I heard it would help concentration. Anyhow, doctor wouldn’t give it to me, even though I swore I had Late Onset ADD (my diagnosis), but she referred me to a psychologist who in turn would supposedly give me something for concentration. It didn’t happen, though I found out I had a high I.Q. Long story to get to the point. The psychologist asked me the most interesting question. What one word would your husband (significant other) use to describe you? Believe me, when I got home, I blasted my husband with this one when he didn’t answer the way I wanted him to, as in sexy or beautiful.

CSM: What’s your biggest regret in life?

SH: Oh, my goodness! So many! In fact, I just wrote a blog for another website about this very issue. I would probably raise my children differently. I might be an archaeologist, instead of a writer. I would have traveled more. I would have bought less Citigroup stock. I would have asked my mother more questions while she was still alive.

CSM: What is the adventurous thing you’ve ever done?

SH: Not much! Unlike my heroine, I am a cautious person. I think before I act. I don’t even like roller coasters. One of my sons is into extreme sports, like mountain climbing. Not me! Probably marrying my husband was the most adventuresome. We are polar opposites. I was shy. He was not. He would try anything. I had to learn to do that.

CSM: How would readers find out more about you?

SH: By reading my books>

CSM: When did you write your first book?

SH: Early nineties. It was published in 1994. THE RELUCTANT VIKING.

CSM: How long did it take you to write it?

SH: Probably a couple years because I did not work on it full-time, and I kept polishing and polishing and polishing.

CSM: Did you encounter any obstacles in writing?

SH: The usual rejections. Raising a family.

CSM: What do you think about editing?

SH: I love the self-editing process. Love taking the skeleton of a book and making it better. And I am not so conceited that I think my words are golden. All writers can benefit from a good editor.

CSM: Where and when do you write?

SH: I used to have a set pattern when my sons were still in school. Once they and my husband left the house, writing from 8-11 was very productive, leaving the afternoons for writing-related stuff. Although my patterns have changed, morning are still my most creative period. And where do I write: In my library at home. In front of a wide picture window overlooking the mountains and stream when at our cottage.

CSM: What books would you recommend to aspiring writers to improve on style, character development, plot structuring, dialogue, etc?

SH: Read the types of books you would like to write. I like Kenyon’s Character Naming Sourcebook. There are lots of books on craft…writing synopses by Pam McCutcheon, for example; how to format a fiction submission. Oh, just tons of them!

CSM: What is your must-have book for writing?

SH: Thesaurus and dictionary.

CSM: What is your advice for aspiring writers?

SH: Read what you like to write. Join a writers group and attend craft session where you, among other things, learn how to format a book proposal. Join a critique group. Attend a regional or national writers conference where you get to meet agents and editors in person. Enter some contests where you get feedback.

CSM: What genre(s) do you write?

SH: Historical, contemporary and time-travel. All of them containing romantic humor.

CSM: Among that you’ve written which is your favorite book and why?

SH: No one favorite. Different favorites for different reasons. Love the character of Etienne from FRANKLY, MY DEAR, who turned into a Civil War POW in SWEETER SAVAGE LOVE. Love the humorous story lines in THE LAST VIKING and THE VERY VIRILE VIKING. Love the character of Angel in my current book, SO INTO YOU, and his ability to laugh at himself. Loved the sex scene at the beginning of VIKING UNCHAINED.
Love the poignancy of my female Navy SEAL in next month’s VIKING HEAT, whose beloved brother was tortured and killed by the Taliban.

CSM: Where do you get your ideas? Do you jot them down in a notebook in case you forget?

SH: Ideas are everywhere. Things I see around me. Things my sons and friends do. TV. Newspapers and magazines. Brainstorming with critique partners. I try to be organized and write them down, but mostly I just have post-it notes all over the place.

CSM: Which of your books feature your family/friends, etc? What characters are modeled after them? Why?

SH: None, really. I’m more likely to visualize someone famous. Like I see Kevin Sorbo (in his role as Hercules) as Rolf in THE LAST VIKING. Or David B. from Bones as any number of my Vikings…i.e., Magnus in THE VERY VIRILE VIKING or Brandr in VIKING HEAT.

CSM: Which of your heroes/heroines is most similar to you?

SH: None. My heroines are mostly tall and slim, neither of which I am. Probably it’s some unconscious alter-me. And too often they have red hair, which I am going to have to work on.

CSM: Who is your strongest/sexiest/most lovable/hottest hero/heroine? Why?

SH: Hottest and most loveable: Etienne and Angel mentioned above. Funniest: Magnus, also mentioned above. Charmaine from my various Cajun books, especially THE CAJUN COWBOY, was adorable, imo…an unabashed bimbo.

CSM: Have you ever wanted to write your book in one direction but your characters wanted to go in another direction. What did you do in such a situation?

SH: Anymore I write by the seat of my pants. That means I know where the story begins, who the characters are and basic plot, and where it will end. But what happens in between is often surprising. One writer likened this to driving at night. You know your destination but you can only see as far as your headlights.

CSM: Tell us more about your current release “So Into You” .

SH: Angel Sabato is an ex-treasure hunter, poker player, and Playgirl centerfold. Grace O’Brien is an ex-poker playing nun, now a folk healer. Angel has been in love with Grace, like forever, but she doesn’t return his affections, not in that way. So he hightails it out of Louisiana…until that wacky Cajun matchmaker Tante Lulu intervenes. Very hot and funny.

CSM: Any new projects, works in progress?

SH: Yes, other than VIKING HEAT coming out next month, a repackaged anthology SANTA HONEY in October, and a return to historical romance in February with VIKING IN LOVE, I also have a new anthology out in March…”Tomorrow is Another Day” in LADIES PREFER ROGUES. Then another Cajun contemporary (Daniel LeDeux’s story), possibly next summer. Then another historical romance in September, tentatively titled THE VIKING TAKES A KNIGHT. And another historical time travel in the fall of 2010, EVEN VIKINGS GET THE BLUES. Whew!

CSM: I want to take this time to thank you Sandra for stopping by and sharing with my readers and myself a little bit about yourself. This sure has been loads of fun. I hope you enjoyed being here as much as we enjoyed having you.

About celticreign

C.S. Morehouse lives in upstate New York with her four children. She loves to take long walks around the lake and mountians and feels they're a great source of inspiration for her writing. She is a constant reader and enjoys many genres. But she is most particular to romance and erotica in its many genres and sub genres.

As for now she is constantly writing for her two review blogs-- Romantic Crush Junkies and Erotic Book Junkies and loves hearing from her readers.


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