Today I’d like to welcome romance author, Diane Amos.
The thought of writing a book never entered Diane’s mind until a friend mentioned she was writing a romance and belonged to the Maine Chapter of the Romance Writers of America. She accompanied her to a meeting, and was hooked. Undaunted, to her, writing a book was simply stringing together sentences to form paragraphs, arranging the paragraphs into scenes, then placing the scenes into chapters. If she wrote enough chapters-viola, she had a book. Little did she know!
Take it away Diane …
Most authors have a book or two that are their favorites. GETTING PERSONAL is one of mine. It was my first sale to Five Star, and my first step into the world of publishing. Some authors live gilded lives. They wake up one morning and decide to write a novel. They type at the speed of light and a few weeks later their book sells for a gazillion dollars. They become an overnight success and Oprah interviews them on a television special. My overnight success took seven years and nine manuscripts before I sold. My advance was slightly less than a gazillion bucks!
What is it about GETTING PERSONAL that tugs at my heart? I LOVE these characters! The sexual tension practically crackles on the pages when Monique and Jake are together. This couple is memorable and fun to be around. The reviewers also loved the book, and I earned the title of Contest HO from my RWA chapter when GETTING PERSONAL won numerous contests along with the Maggie Award of Excellence. The book is funny, sexy, and since many of the fans on this website write or read erotica and really hot love scenes, I should mention there’s a scene when the heroine handcuffs the hero to her bed. I was pleased to get the rights back and be able to re-release this through Amazon. I hope it finds new readers who will fall in love with Monique and Jake the way I did while I was writing this story.
Sometimes good intentions aren’t enough. No one knows that better than Monique St. Cyr, parochial school dropout, dieter extraordinaire, and want-to-be investigative reporter with pit bull tenacity and a habit of leaping headlong before she looks. Monique, obituary writer for a tabloid-style newspaper in Portland, Maine, lives next door to her mother, Anne Marie, an erotic fiction author. Anne Marie enlists Monique’s help to do research for her next book about couples who meet online…by filling out several personals for her daughter. Monique is swamped with emails, and her life gets even more complicated when she meets Jake Dube, a policeman with a wicked grin and a heated gaze.
My mother wrote erotic fiction under the penname, Busty Galore, a misnomer because unlike me her shoulder blades protruded more than her breasts. I loved her dearly, but she had a way of butting into my life. Plus, her 20/20 eyesight and keen ears were capable of seeing and hearing only what she wanted.
As she clicked onto the personals, apprehension sliced through me.
“Look at it this way, by helping me, you’ll help yourself too.” She checked the box in front of men looking for women, then continued down the column, ages 28-40, built athletic, average, or slightly overweight.
I swallowed past the lump in my throat. “The last time I got involved in one of your schemes I ended up knee deep in mudflats with bullets whizzing over my head.”
“That clam digger sure got edgy when he thought you were staking claim to his territory.” My mother laughed. “Anyway, everything turned out fine once I explained I was gathering information for a book I was writing. Besides, that was so long ago, I’m surprised you still remember.”
“How can I forget! My boots were suctioned in muck. I ran barefoot, pursued by a wild-eyed man toting a sharp clam fork and shouting obscenities. I’m lucky I wasn’t killed.”
“You exaggerate,” she said sweetly. “Besides, I thought he was kind of cute. And thanks to you, I got enough material to write my book, which I’ve already sold for a considerable sum, I might add. If you hadn’t been so crabby, I bet he’d have asked you out.”
“The man was a lunatic!”
“Once he calmed down, he seemed nice enough.”
“I refuse to discuss this again.” I smacked my lips shut.
My mother turned back to the computer.
I was twelve years old when my father died. My mother worked two jobs, often doing without so my brother, Thomas, and I could wear the right clothes and fit in with the other children at Saint Joseph’s Parochial School. We owed her big time. Unlike me, my brother made himself scarce, which didn’t matter because it was a Catholic daughter’s duty to assist her “poor decrepit mother”—her words, not mine.
Ten years ago my mother sold her first book, and much to the family’s surprise became an overnight success. Unfortunately, each time she coaxed me into helping her, something backfired.
I rolled my eyes. “I absolutely refuse to root around in dirt, scale buildings, or anything else that might do bodily harm.”
“There’ll be no bullets this time. No mud either. This is very safe, and you’ll enjoy yourself.” She eyed me warily. “You really need to go out more.”
“Humph,” I muttered, knowing I’d already lost this battle.
“Look, mom, I know you mean well, but I’m happy, really.”
“Keep your phony baloney for someone else. I know you’re lonely, and I’ve found the perfect solution.”
I groaned. If she heard, she didn’t let on.
My mother clicked several categories. Checkmarks filled small boxes. A list of screen names appeared. “Here we are, dear, males for the picking, just like ripe fruit off a tree.”
A wormy apple sprang to mind. I shook my head in disbelief.
“The internet is a viable way to meet the opposite sex.”
It finally sunk in. “You expect me to talk to men online?”
“Yes, and once you get to know them, you’ll tell me all about your conversations. Of course, you’ll go on dates with a few of our favorites and then report your results.”
She beamed an innocent smile. “Who knows, you might even find the man of your dreams.”
I glanced at the screen names on the monitor: Studman, MusclesManiac, I’veGotIt, Babemagnet, and Willin&Able. I turned to my mother. “You can’t be serious?”
“I’d like to submit an ad with your profile and a recent picture. That’ll allow me to learn what type of man prowls the Internet for love.”
“There’s no way in hell…”
GETTING PERSONAL is FREE on Amazon until Sunday so be sure to run over and download your copy. If you like what you read, keep in mind there’s a sequel, MIXED BLESSINGS, with many of the same characters.
Thanks for dropping by, and thank you Nina for inviting me to visit.
Thank you for stopping over Diane. I’ve always loved Diane’s quirky sense of humor and how she manages to carry that over into her stories. There are very few authors who make me laugh out loud when I’m reading like Diane is able to do. What about you, ever find yourself laughing at a good story? How do you like your romance? Straight up serious, or with a little snarky humor thrown in? You know me, I’m always curious about stuff like that.