14 August 2009

Monthly Booktip Interview: Erin Quinn

Hi Erin,
Welcome to my realm and thank you for coming up here and talk a bit about your new novel; Haunting Beauty. I’d say, get comfy, grab a drink and talk the talk *grin*

Leontine, thank YOU for having me. I love connecting with readers so it’s a treat for me to be here.
Haunting Beauty, the novel:
· What inspired you to write Haunting Beauty and what is the story about?
In HAUNTING BEAUTY, I explored a personal fascination with time and the idea that the past is not set in stone. Mistakes can be un-made, heartache can be transformed into triumph . . . but at what cost? If the past is an elaborate puzzle with interchangeable pieces, when one is altered, how do the others still fit? And how could you be sure that what changed didn’t make everything worse?

Once I began with those building blocks and put Sean and Danni (hero and heroine of HAUNTING BEAUTY) together, the two of them wrote their own stories.

· What do you think makes a good romance story?
Wow, great question. For me it is always the people. I have to love the hero and relate to the heroine. I have to want them to fall in love. Beyond that, it can be anything from regency to erotica—the rest is just icing. The cake is the part I care about.

· What is your favorite part of the writing process?
Writing THE END, ha ha. Writing is a very personal experience and sometimes it’s a journey with fine hotels and room service and other times it’s a broken down wreck that leaves you stranded in the desert without food or water. There are days when I love what I do and others where I find myself googling psychiatric care for a cure. On the love days, it’s being able to capture the movie playing in my head and translate it into the perfect words on the page. On the worst, it’s feeling like my movie is a pirated copy with chunks missing and everyone is speaking a foreign language.

· Can you introduce us the main characters and tell a bit about them?
HAUNTING BEAUTY’S heroine is Danni Smith and the hero is Sean Ballagh. I fall in love with every hero I write, but there was something about Sean that still has me sighing over him. It’s more than the tall, dark and handsome thing—although Sean is definitely all that. I guess it’s Sean’s personal struggle to be a good man that completely captured my heart. He wants to do the right thing, but for Sean, nothing is ever easy and doing the right thing means facing a reality that could destroy him.

Then he meets Danni.

Life has been hard on Danni, but she’s a smart and strong woman who has never given in to despair. She keeps going when many would have given up and, with her little dog, Bean, has found contentment, if not happiness. She’s accepted the fact that she will probably never know who she is, why she was abandoned as a child, or if she has family out there, somewhere. But when Sean appears at her door offering everything she ever wished for—the answers to the questions of her past and the ticket to find her family—Danni must follow him to Ireland, a land steeped with mystery and lore.

And so begins the dance where each wants something the other has, but neither of them knows quite how to get it—or even how to give it.

· What is the most challenging about writing Haunting Beauty?
HAUNTING BEAUTY is set on a fictitious island off the southern coast of Ireland and the research I did on Ireland was both rewarding and challenging. I’ve yet to make it to Ireland in person, so I had to rely on books to give me the information I needed. Ireland has thousands of years of history, and this made it very daunting.

· What was one of the most surprising things you learned while writing Haunting Beauty?
Wow, another great question. In factual terms, I learned that New Grange in Ireland is thought to be older than Stonehenge. I had no idea.

· What do you do when the going gets rough?
Hmmm, I think forge ahead is all that can be done. I’ve had a lot of rough patches in the years I’ve been writing and during those times I could only look inside and ask myself, “what are the options? Quit or go on.” I’ve never managed to quit, so I go on.

· What do you like to do when you're not writing?
Read. I am the quintessential book worm. I love to read and my family is always whining that I’ve either got my nose in someone else’s book or in my own. I love movies too.

· What is one of your classic novels on your bookshelves you can always re-read, and what novel is your latest purchase?
Pride and Prejudice, which I’ve read countless times. Latest buy? There were four in the one purchase: ENCHANTING THE BEAST, Kathryne Kennedy, (wonderful), THE MADNESS OF LORD IAN MACKENZIE, Jennifer Ashley (amazing), EVE OF DESTRUCTION, SJ Day, (terrific) and OBJECT OF DESIRE, Calista Fox (dynamite).
I recommend them all.

Do you have a favorite scene in Haunting Beauty?
Oh yes. Actually, I have about 5. But one of my favorites is when Sean realizes why has really come to see Danni:

I’m not going anywhere with you until you answer my question. Why you? Why are you here?”

Her demand shifted the ground beneath him, pushing him ever closer to an edge he hadn’t seen before, hadn’t suspected lurked just in the distance.
Why was he here? Why was he here?

Because of her, the answer came simply enough. He’d come only for her.
It made perfect sense and yet the why of it eluded him. He stood there, staring into those thunderous gray eyes and the only explanation was wrapped around his heart, bound so tight he couldn’t separate it and analyze it.

He’d come for her because . . . because . . . she belonged with him. That alone was the reason he’d come to bring her home.

The simplicity of it rolled over him like a great wave. It forced him under and towed him out as it washed everything else away. He felt bewitched, bewildered, beset. The possessive need of her cast a shadow in his mind that he couldn’t see past, though he knew he should. What waited on the other side? What was it that flitted in and out of the recesses of his memory?
He raised his eyes to Danni’s and something of his confusion must have shown through. He sensed a softening in her, a reaching out. And like a drowning man, he grasped.

“I came for you,” he muttered, propelled forward by the power of the statement. He backed her to the counter in three quick steps. Surprise widened her eyes while something else—something deep and conceding darkened them. The moment had been inevitable; he saw it there in her face and it charged his blood, infusing him with fire.

Slowly, deliberately, he braced his hands on either side of her and lowered his head to hers. A fraction of breath kept them apart but the intimate rhythm of her racing pulse beating at her throat, of his heart pounding in his chest—it made them one. “I came for you,” he said against her mouth.

And then he kissed her. The feel of her lips, the heat of her breath as it expelled in a rush went through him like an electric charge. He’d dived in, expecting the water to be shallow, the act painful. But if this was pain, he hoped to die of it.

· What’s next for you?
HAUNTING WARRIOR is next, book two in the Haunting Series. This is Rory’s (Danni’s brother in HAUNTING BEAUTY) story. It took an amazing man to get me over Sean and Rory is every bit that.

Erin Quinn 101:

1. What was the highlight of your week?
I received my first note from a reader who had already found HAUNTING BEAUTY in the bookstore and read it. She loved it. Made my whole week.

2. Last movie you watched?
Revolutionary Road and Harry Potter. Revolutionary Road was not my favorite to say the least and a part of me is convinced that I must not have understood it. Regardless, it depressed the hell out of me though I’m a big Leo fan. Harry Potter was wonderful and I can’t wait to see the next one.

3. Who came over last night?
My neighbors and friends, Howie and Julie. We went to dinner and then came back to our house.

4. Current favorite food?
Argh, I don’t know. I’m not a picky eater and I generally love everything. My favorite treat is popcorn and peanut M&Ms mixed together.

5. Your favorite vacation spot?
Sheesh, you’re asking some hard ones. Of the places I’ve been, I have to say Mexico. I love the laid back atmosphere and the margaritas.

6. Current favorite tv shows?

7. If you could have one thing right now what would it be?
Time. Always time. I work full time, write and have a family. I never have enough time.

8. What's your favorite band?
Brad Paisley. The man is a poet.

9. Where do you want to live?
Despite the heat (I’m in Arizona where it’s blistering), I’m pretty happy where I am. Would love vacation homes all over the world, though, ha ha.

10. What is your favorite song?
Bring it on home, by Little Big Town. The lyrics are so beautiful.

Hey, thanks for having me on your site, Leontine! You asked some great questions and this was fun!!!

Erin Quinn's website with awesome info, contests and excerpts ~click here~

Buy a copy of HAUNTING BEAUTY ~click here~

Check out another fabulous interview Erin did at VampFanGirl's place ~click here~

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  1. Great interview. I ordered this book the other day.I can't wait to read it.

  2. Hi Leontine!

    Great interview, this author has really caught my attention!

    I'm looking for books as we speak!

    Dottie :)

  3. Erin caught my eye in my monthly RT magazine and then I started to investegate a bit and entered her site, read her excerpt and had tongue lolling on my keyboard. The prose alone very much appealed to me.

  4. Hi Everyone! Leontine, thank you so much for hosting me here! This is so exciting. I love talking to readers and you made my day when you contacted me. I hope you'll let me know what you think of Haunting Beauty when you finish it!!

  5. Leontine! Erin! What's up ladies!! Fabulous interview. Leontine, I'm drooling over your interview questions. So good!

    Guess what guys! Today is Friday Pay Day and guess what I'm doin'?? Oh yeah, this addict is getting her fix!! I'm buying some books. Several actually. Some unexpected house expenses came up forcing me to kick the habit for two whole freakin' weeks. But VampFanGirl is back and I'm my husband's worst nightmare. lol!

    Erin, I gotta say, I watched 'Revolutionary Road' too and I'm with you. Super depressing. I was in complete shock at the end. I even had to take a moment and decompress! I think Kate's character had some major issues. I'm a big Leo fan too. He's grown so much more handsome with age. He was such a scrawny teenager! He's lookin' scrumptious now though. Loved him 'Body of Lies'.

    Have a great weekend ladies!

    (((hugs))) VFG

  6. Hi Dottie, let me know what you end up with!!

    Hi VFG - what's up girl...VFG?? Helloooooooo. Already at B&N I guess. Getting her book fix LOL I have my next fix already stacked: Kenyon - Bad Moon Rising (or it is actually on its way to me) this is also true for Moning's Dreamfever and I am already petting my copy of Erin Quinn - Haunting Beauty. Opening the book, reading a paragraph, closing it again cause have to finish ARC read and review.

    There were times I wished to be a speed reader *blush*

    Hi Erin, I have read your interview in this months RT magazine, quite the exposure for Haunting Beauty *WOOT*

  7. Oh yes, VFG, LOVED Leo in The Departed too.

    Leontine, I love your descriptions--petting Haunting Beauty--lol. I hope it lives up to expectations.

    Yes the RT thing is VERY cool. I'm so excited!~

    Getting ready for a big book signing party at my house tomorrow night. If you lived in AZ, you'd be headed to it, right? Chocolate, Champagne and books...what more could you want? :) Okay, hunky men serving the above mentioned treats, but can't have everything....

  8. I have this book! The cover is amazing and the story sounds amazing too!

  9. Hi Amy - Between you, me, VFG and Elaine we can almost make it for a HAUNTING BEAUTY review week LOL

  10. What a stunning cover! The book sounds really good, as well. Thanks Erin and Leontine for the interesting interview!

  11. Great interview! And that excerpt is very very tempting! :D

  12. Hi Leontine!!

    Awesome interview!! I'm picking this book up this week....can't wait!! :)

  13. Oh I like the sound of the Haunting Beauty review week, lol.

    Thanks for all the positive words, everyone. It's so nice to get such a wonderful welcome.

    By the way, there's a first chapter excerpt on my website if you're interested, and be sure to enter my contests. Especially check out my grand prize contest--buy one get 20 free plus $100 gift card. :)


  14. Great interview!! I am super excited to get my hands on this book!!

  15. Great interview!!! This one sounds really interesting! And the cover is beautiful!

  16. Great interview :)
    Hm Paisley, why do that name sound familiar, must have something by him on my playlist :)

  17. Hi Jenn and Blodeuedd,
    Glad you guys enjoyed the interview :D

  18. Enjoyed the interview, thanks! I love the cover on this book. I'm going to keep my eye out for this, really grabbed me at the part about little Bean. :)

  19. Mandi, JennJ, Blodeuedd, Donna--thanks so much. I'm glad you liked the interview. Donna, if you pop over to my website, I have pictures of Bean. :)


  20. Thanks Erin! I enjoyed that excerpt, love it when pets are included in the story, makes it's so much more personal. I definitely plan to check out Haunting Beauty.

  21. Donna, my doggies make appearances in most of my books. In Whispers, my beloved (and dearly departed) Yorkie Woofey is the Romeo to the great danes Juliet and Tinkerbelle. (no, I've never had danes, but they are darned "cute")

  22. Leotine,

    I'm a first time visitor, but I will be back...wonderful site and it was a very interesting interview!


  23. Hi Hawk,
    Welcome here, I love to meet new people, your name does ring a giant cow bell LOL My name has many variables and most forget the N *wink*

    Glad you liked the interview, Erin Quinn is a very interesting person :D

  24. PS; Now I know why I recognize your name, I have been visiting your blog a few times already!

  25. Hi Leontine,

    Yet again another great interview woohoo!

    Erin if you get the chance do visit Ireland it's an amazing country with so much history indeed and lovely people at atmosphere. It's really mystical!

    I've visited New Grange once it's near Drogheda above Dublin and off I think it was Slane rd but not sure it's been a while!

    What is it about Ireland that inspired you to write a story there?

    Natascha / Ashleagh

  26. Hawk, thanks for stopping by!

    Natascha / Ashleagh, I definitely hope to get to Ireland sooner rather than later. My research only made my desire to go that much greater.

    EH, greetings!

  27. Hey Erin,

    The Northwest is brilliant as well as the Ring of Kerry. It's rural and cliffs and waterfalls are amazing. The area of Loch Gill in co Sligo is definitely a great area to visit!

    Natascha / Ashleagh

  28. Sligo holds good memories Ash! I really hope you can go there and experience it all first hand Erin...going to start in HAUNTING BEAUTY today :D

  29. JUst got back in town. Canada was simply GRAND.

    Leontine, looking forward to hearing what you think of Haunting Beauty!


I love to hear all your voices and opinions so thanks for stopping by and leaving a comment.