One of the best parts of being a blogger is that I get to read and introduce you to great authors and their work. Brenda Whiteside is an example of that. A fellow Wild Rose Press sistah, Brenda is a multi-published, successful author who not only writes romantic suspense but pens 2 blogs as well. The links for those sites are listed below. In December 2016, she had her newest book THE POWER OF LOVE AND MURDER released by WRP and after today’s interview she’s giving you a little bit to whet your reading appetites – and believe me: you’ll be hungry for more!
Sit back and learn about Brenda, the writer, and the regular gal.
Brenda, The Writer
- What drives you to write? Good question, but I’m not sure I have a definitive answer. I think we all need some sort of creative outlet. I’ve been story telling ever since I have memories. I also drew and painted, and thought that was my main thing which led to a major in college. But a creative writing class turned that upside down. Now, if I go a day or two without writing, I feel less than whole.
- What genre(s) of Romance do your write, and why? Romantic Suspense is my current genre. I grew bored with straight romance. Villains are extremely interesting to write. Coming up with new devious behavior and various hero/heroine ways to deal with it keeps me writing.
- What genre(s) of Romance do you read, and why? I read suspense, romantic or otherwise. And for the same reason I write it…the combination of good vs. evil, villain vs. hero/heroine.
- What’s your writing schedule? Do you write everyday? I’m up at least three hours before my husband, FDW. Part of that time is spent writing and part dealing with promo and email. Once he’s up, and if he’s not fishing, we eat and run errands or walk. By mid-morning I’m writing again. I intend on writing every day, but it doesn’t always happen. Holidays really put a kink in my schedule.
- Give us a glimpse of the surroundings where you write. Separate room? In the kitchen? At the dining room table? We’re full time RVers right now. If FDW is around, I normally write in the bedroom. If he’s fishing, I sit in the living room looking out on the forest.
- Are you the kind of writer who needs total quiet to compose, or are you able to filter out the typical sounds of the day and use your tunnelvision? Mostly, I need quiet, yet if I’m really into it, I can go deaf to my surroundings.
- Do you listen to music while you write, and if so, what kind? If not, why not? No. Music is one thing that distracts me. I find myself singing!
- How did you come up with the plotline/idea for your current WIP? I’m on book five of the series and the last planned book. I love creating characters (or letting them create themselves) and this series is character driven. When I set out to write a series, I wanted romance but also heavy suspense. I brainstormed the first book with FDW, and the rest of the series spun off those first characters.
- Which comes first for you – character or plot? And why? Character. I don’t really know why. Maybe I need the character to reveal the plot to me.
Brenda, The Person
- Tell us one unusual thing about yourself – not related to writing! I used to belly dance.
- Who was your first love and what age were you? I know there were little boys before my teen years, but I’d say my first love, I thought was love, was Ted Harpchak when I was fifteen. He was a base player in a band. He didn’t feel the same, and I shed many tears!
- If you could relive one day, which one would it be? Think GROUNDHOG DAY, the movie for this one – you’ll have to live it over and over and…. The first time I set eyes on and held my son. ( Peggy here: Awwwwwwwwww!)
- Do you like a guy in boxers, briefs, or commando? Briefs but not TOO baggy.
- If you had to give up one necessary-can’t-live-without-it beauty item, what would it be? Liquid makeup
- If you could sing a song with Jimmy Fallon, what would it be? I can’t possibly answer this because I’ve never watched Jimmy Fallon. Am I weird? ( Peggy here: NO!!You are not weird!!)
- If you could hang out with any literary character from any book penned at any time line, who would it by, why, and what would you do together? Lucas Davenport of the Prey series by John Sandford. I was so hooked on that series. I would love to be able to keep a storyline going with the same character who grows and changes over years. Lucas is a hunk, a good cop, but not perfect. I would want to follow him around and learn enough to write such a well-rounded character.
I love the Actor’s Studio show on Bravo, so this is my version of it:
- Favorite sound My granddaughter’s laughter.
- Least favorite sound Football on TV
- Best song every written Smooth
- Worst song ever written Mustang Sally
- Favorite actor and actress Matt Damon and Meryl Streep
- What turns you on? A good laugh
- What turns you off? braggarts
- Give me the worst 5 words ever heard on a first date ( here’s mine: “Is that your real hair?”) You’re awfully forward, aren’t you?
- What’s your version of a perfect day? Up early. Two hours of intense and fruitful writing followed by breakfast cooked by FDW. Then a hike with FDW. In the late afternoon, a patio meetup with friends and wine. In the evening, dinner and a favorite show on TV, with FDW of course
Blurb: The Power of LOVE AND MURDER
For thirteen years, Penny Sparks has managed to hide from the political powers who murdered her family. When she unwittingly exposes her true identity, not only is she marked for death, but the people closest to her risk meeting the same fate.
Jake Winters is out of rehab and coming to grips with his demons. When he meets his sister’s roommate, Jake believes Penny might be that someone who can help him find life after rock star status…until her secrets blow up his world.
With a government agent turned hit man closing in on her, Penny and Jake race to expose the presidential contender behind the murders of her family. Even if they win the race with death, the murder that stands between them could end their hope for a new life.
Jake nodded, but all he could concentrate on were Penny’s last words before the officer appeared. When they were alone again, he threw up his hands. “What do you mean, go back to Phoenix? Why the hell would I do that?”
She turned her back on him, went to the open door of the bathroom, and lifted her clothes from the hook. Beneath the thin, hospital gown her spine was straight, her movements tight, as if coiled and ready to spring.
“Penny, I know how much she meant to you.” How much she meant to both of them. He wanted to hold her, share their loss. “I’m not leaving you.”
Untying the gown, she let it drop around her feet, and sidestepped out of the heap. She pulled the dark gray sweater over her head then stepped into black velvet jeans, refusing to make eye contact or speak as she sat on the green plastic chair.
This was killing him. The need to hold her, help her with her pain—his pain—rushed through him. Haltingly, he made his way to her, touched her head, and waited while she zipped her boots. “Penny.” She resisted, but he tipped her chin, forcing her to look up. “Come on, baby. You don’t have to worry about me leaving you.”
“When I tell you the truth, you will.”
Brenda and her husband are gypsies at heart having lived in six states and two countries. Currently, they split their time between the pines of Northern Arizona, the desert of Southern Arizona, and the RV life. Wherever she roams, she spends most of her time writing stories of discovery, suspense, and the tangled relationships of life.
Visit Brenda here: