Debbie, I'm so glad you could join me today! I can't wait to get started so has everyone got their coffee or tea ready? I've got my pumpkin chai tea all brewed and delicious so let's begin!
Thank you for taking the time to sit down with me on The Lindsay Show, Debbie! I love getting to meet new people and finding out about their books, and let me tell you The Haunting of Wolfe Haven grabbed me with that title alone :)
We'll get to that in a few minutes though...first can you tell me when you first knew you wanted to be a writer?
I always loved to read but I knew that I wanted to write beyond a shadow of a doubt by the time I hit high school.
Oh I love that! I was a bit of a late bloomer in that aspect so I'm a bit envious that you were so sure at such a young age. What has been the most difficult part about being a writer?
Finding the time! Life has this way of preventing me from spending as much time as I would like writing.
I can certainly relate to that lol. I have had so many issues finding time for my writing. Ever notice how just when you're about to hit your groove, life will spring up and toss up obstacles or distractions?? But I digress haha. Tell me, who are your favorite authors?
Lori Handeland, Juliet Blackwell, Paula Graves, JA Jance, Kat Martin, Allison Kingsley and Lorraine Bartlett.
I'm inspired by women writers who so often balance family and the love of writing effectively. Emily Bronte is probably the writer that inspired me the most. She fearlessly pursued her dream at a time when women writers were not respected and she left us with one of my favorite books--Wuthering Heights.
You know, I'm the same way. Those women who can strike that balance are just amazing to me and a constant source of inspiration. Now let's dig a little deeper into your style. Do you like to plan your scenes out ahead of time, or do you prefer to just wing it?
I'm a planner but I have my moments when something strikes me and I just run with it and let it take me where it goes.
Hmm I may need to hit you up for advice on planning; I'm the world's worst planner lol. You've already mentioned some of your favorite authors, but what type of books do you like to read?
Mysteries, paranormal romance, and classics like Gone with the Wind and Wuthering Heights.
As a girl who lived in North Carolina for a few years, I've always been partial to Gone with the Wind myself :) What do you like to do in your free time (if you have any lol)?
Read (what a shocker!), watch classic movies (I'm an all-time Susan Hayward and Jessica Tandy fan!), hike, and spend time with my dog.
Ok confession time...I have no idea who Susan Hayward or Jessica Tandy are, but I will be looking them up! Oh and you have a dog too! I love dog people :) Again, I digress. Where is your favorite place to vacation?
New Orleans--I love it! But I admit that someday I would like to visit Australia and Ireland.
*Gasp* A woman after my own heart...I would love to visit Ireland one day too! Time to spice things up a bit. Since it's the Halloween season, what's the craziest costume you've ever worn?
This is so embarrassing! Many years ago--on a dare--I dressed up like a dinosaur complete with purple leotard and handmade purple tail.
The Southwest is rich with folklore and tales of the supernatural not to mention many cultural influences. I grew up in Albuquerque in a family of firefighters who were always sharing the unexplained things they encountered at the fires they responded to. I hung on to every word they spoke just picturing what it must have been like to be there. This led to an interest in the paranormal which influenced my reading material and I can't help it, the supernatural finds a way into my writing too. So yes, the Southwest influences my writing.
I'm even more intrigued. I adore the Southwestern regions. not just for their cowboys, I promise! I've always loved their rich legends and folklore. Was there a particular reason why you chose to write a gothic romance?
Truthfully, it just happened. This story changed so much from the original rough draft to the finished product that I sometimes think it had a mind of its own.
I had a lot of fun creating the characters. They are all quirky, everyday people you might meet on the street and each of them has a uniqueness that stands out. I also enjoyed creating the topiary garden of wolves that makes Wolfe Haven a tourist attraction in the story.
Love quirky people, no idea why seeing as how I'm perfectly normal myself of course *grin* How did you come up with the premise for this book?
After I had written the rough draft, my sister became extremely ill and spent a lot of time in and out of the hospital. During that year, she nearly died on four separate occasions. For my family and I that meant long hours in ERs and ICU rooms. To keep myself focused, I worked on the story. The main theme running through the book is that second chances do come along in life. As people, we are not perfect. We make poor choices, suffer the consequences, learn from the experience, and hopefully move on to recapture forgotten dreams. My sister made some poor health choices, suffered the consequences, worked to overcome her health issues, and is now living a productive life helping others to do the same.
Oh honey, I'm so sorry to hear about your sister but I'm so glad she's been given a second chance and seems to be making the most of it! Can you tell me more about the setting of Wolfe Haven?
Wolfe Haven is the ancestral home of Tristan Russell who is married to the main character, Riley. The house has withstood the bloodshed of America being settled and has been rebuilt several times following fire. On the property is a topiary garden of wolves that the family constructed to honor the many wolves that once freely roamed the area. Its many rooms have been witness to birth, bloodshed, death, and lays claim to being haunted by a long gone family member.
Wow, this setting sounds spectacular and I love the name! How did you come up with it, or is it based on a real location?
Wolfe Haven is fictional and exists only in my mind. I always wanted to live in an old ancestral house filled with history and memories and I drew on this desire as the premise for the house itself. The name came about because of the topiary garden of wolves. I made the family name Wolfe so that I could connect it to the garden. I spent quite a bit of time pairing Wolfe with various references to dwellings but when I wrote down Haven, it leaped out at me and I knew I'd found the right name.
Excuse me while I pout for a moment because I can't actually visit this place. *pout* Ok I'm done haha, we can continue now lol. So, do you have any favorite characters from your books?
Riley is my favorite character. She represents the fears we all face, and learns how to deal with those fears, step by step. Anyone who has been hurt or rejected from a marriage, a friend, a parent, can relate to her. She says what most of us are thinking but are afraid to say out loud while embracing her weaknesses and working toward positive change.
She sounds like a very relatable character. This clinches it, totally buying this, not that there was any doubt. I must know more about Riley. Truly, this book sounds fantastic. Will it be part of a series? Please say yes!
That's the plan. I hope to have at least 6 books in "The Haunting" series by the time I'm done. If all goes as planned the next book should be out in late 2013.
Yay! *happy dance* I foresee great things from you, I mean that. I haven't even had a chance to read The Haunting of Wolfe Haven yet and I'm already excited about the prospects of the future books in the series. So, what's next for you?
I'm actively working on "The Haunting of Summerwind," and loving every minute of it.
Woot! That makes me so happy! Well, I'm sorry to say we are just about out of time today. Is there anything else you'd like your readers to know?
I love to connect with readers and writers both.
Fantastic! Everybody, look down below for Debbie's contact details! Also keep reading for a bit of background on Debbie :)
Thank you again Debbie for taking the time to answer my questions. It has been a blast and I have loved getting to know you better!
The Haunting of Wolfe Haven...Buy it Now!!
About Debbie Heaton
Find Debbie Online:
About myself: A New Mexico native, I wrote my first novella in high school. A voracious reader, I like books that pair tantalizing mystery, compelling romance, and a touch of the paranormal. I learned to love reading early because the public library was close and free of charge. My mother has repeatedly stated through the years that she never had to look far for me because I could always be found somewhere in the library stacks. My love for books is so great that I applied to my local Library Advisory Board and now happily serve in that capacity doing everything I can to preserve this great American institution and also promote early childhood literacy. I provide a parenting column to my local newspaper to promote positive parenting. When I'm not reading or writing, I'm a master's level therapist, a domestic violence advocate, and a parent educator. I am a member of the International Women's Writing Guild and the Paranormal Romance Guild. I make my home in Southeastern Arizona.Writing Background: I started keeping a journal by the time I was in middle school and never stopped. By the time I was in high school, my English teachers were encouraging me to write. By the time I graduated high school, I had written a novella as my final English assignment. Initially in college I studied to be both a writer and a teacher. By the end of my freshman year, it was clear my strengths lay outside of teaching and I changed my focus. The writing continued and then my family came along and I was forced to put the writing on the back burner for awhile. When I was able to pick writing up again, I produced a lot of short stories and entered every writing contest I could. I continually got feedback from editors encouraging me to change my focus from short stories to full length novels. Throughout my professional career, I have provided guest columns in my local paper. Currently, I am writing a bi-monthly column focusing on positive parenting.
- Website: www.debbieaheaton.com
- Twitter: @authordebbie
- Facebook (fan page): The Haunting of Wolfe Haven
- Facebook (main page): http://www.facebook.com/da.heaton