Tuesday, November 16, 2010

In the Author Spotlight: Debra St. John

Cate: Please welcome Debra St. John. Debra, will you please share a short bio with us?
Debra: I started reading romance in high school, and made some really sad attempts to write a few back then as well. But even though those first attempts were more embarrassing than anything else, I always knew I wanted to publish a romance novel some day. A few years ago my dream came true when I published my debut novel with The Wild Rose Press: This Time for Always. In real life, I live in a suburb of Chicago with my wonderful husband, who is my real life hero.

Cate: Tell us about This Can’t Be Love and where it's available.
Debra: This Can’t Be Love is my third release from The Wild Rose Press, and is the second in a series, following This Time for Always. This Can’t Be Love is Zach and Jessica’s story. Jessica’s not ready for love when Zach comes into her life, but her heart overrules her head and she finds herself falling for her grandfather’s sexy house-sitter.

Cate: Please tantalize us with a story blurb or excerpt.
Debra: Here’s a blurb my editor, the fabulously wonderful Kat O’Shea, wrote for it as a teaser:
This Can’t Be Love begins where This Time for Always ended. Reconnect with all your favorite characters: Sharlie, Logan, and most of all, Zach, who stars as the hero of Debra St. John’s newest novel. Zach deserves a love of his own, but will he find it with Jessica, who’s running from love?

Cate: Very cool. I love Kat too. Can you tell us why we're going to love your hero?
Debra: Zach is kind, caring, honorable, trustworthy, a damn good chef…and sexy as all hell. He’s perfect for Jessica, even if she doesn’t realize it at first.

Cate: He sounds perfect. :) Tease us with one little thing about your fictional world that makes it different from others.
Debra: The setting for This Can’t Be Love is based on a real place we vacation at each year. (Although I’ve taken the liberty of “moving” it out west from its actual Missouri location.) It was a blast to have Zach and Jessica running around in a place from the real world. Friends who have read it already have been tickled to recognize so many familiar places.

Cate: How fun! What's next for you?
Debra: I’m currently working on the third in this series for The Wild Rose Press. This story features Jake as the hero, another character readers met for the first time in This Time for Always, and got to know a little bit more in This Can’t Be Love. I also have a completed manuscript I plan on submitting to Harlequin.

Cate: Great! What inspired you to draft your first story?
Debra: Like I mentioned above, I’ve always been an avid romance reader and always knew I wanted to try my hand at writing one. So I did! It was awful. Of course I was sixteen at the time. What did I know? When I “grew up” and learned a bit more about life and writing, I gave writing a go again. The idea for my first “real” story, This Time for Always, came from hanging out with friends at the bar where my hubby and I met.

Cate: Do you have a writing routine?
Debra: I wish. I write when the muse strikes or when I have the time. Which in both cases isn’t happening often enough these days.

Cate: Where can readers find you on the web?
Debra: Readers can visit my web-site at www.debrastjohnromance.com or check out my blog posts on Sundays at the Acme Authors’ Link or on Thursdays at Heroines with Hearts.

Cate: Wow, you're busy. :) Is there anything you’d like to ask our readers?
Debra: What compels you to pick up a book and read it? Cover, blurb, excerpt? How do you decide with so many great authors and books out there?

Cate: Thanks so much for being my guest, Debra! Best of luck with all your projects.


Cate Masters said...

Welcome Debra! Your series sounds wonderful. I love interconnected stories. And your covers are beautiful!

Debra St. John said...

Hi Cate,

Thanks so much for having me today. I always wanted to write of series of interconnected books. Being able to do so is a dream come true. And I have to give credit to Angela Anderson at TWRP for my fabulous covers!

Marilyn Brant said...

Congrats, Debra! And Hi, Kate ;).

For me, the cover catches my eye first, or an interesting title, but I always read the backcover copy and the first few pages, sometimes some random pages in the middle of the book, too, before deciding to read it all.

Sarah J. McNeal said...

Debra, I love your book cover and the story sounds amazing. Lovely interview. I wish you much success.

Pamala Knight said...

That cover is very engaging and would be the reason I'd pick the book up. Then I'd immediately flip it to the back cover to decide if I wanted to read. Like Marilyn, sometimes I'll even flip to a page and read for a bit to see if I'm still engaged. Usually by that time, I'm heading towards the checkout line ;-).

Great interview. Thanks Deb and Cate!!

Debra St. John said...

Marilyn and Pamala,

I'm a cover girl, too. That's what usually catches my eye first.

Hi Sarah, Thanks for stopping by!

Paula Martin said...

Great interview, Debra and Cate! Love your description of Zach, Debra - a sexy chef - nice!
I've also set one of my novels in a 'real' place. Even though I used a different name for it, I'm sure people familiar with the English Lake District will recognise it!
Good luck with the new release!

Margaret Tanner said...

Hi Debra,
Lovely to get to know you a little better. Connected stories are great, I only wish I could write them. Best of luck with Harlequin.



Debra St. John said...

Hi Paula and Margaret,

Thanks for stopping by! The "series" has been fun to write.

Margot Justes said...

Wonderful eye catching cover, and a great interview.

Margot Justes
A Hotel in Paris

Debra St. John said...

Thanks, Margot. I do love my TWRP covers.

Maeve said...

Wonderful interview and all your books sound awesome, Debra!

Debra St. John said...

Hi Maeve,

Thanks so much!

Morgan Mandel said...

A hero who can cook is definitely a keeper! Can hardly wait to read this one.
And I do like the cover and the fact they're dressed casual, but still look great.

Morgan Mandel

Debra St. John said...

Hi Morgan,

Yep! He's a keeper...

Karen Michelle Nutt said...

Hi Cate!
I like the spotlight logo--cool.

Hi Debra!

I love your new book cover!! Very lovely. I enjoy the interconnected books, too. I'm glad your dream to write such stories has come true for you.

I wish you the best with your release!