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Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Spotlight Author with Diane Gaston

Here in Central California it's Fair time!!! You know what that means... Yep!! You guessed it. My skinny jeans will fit no more! They have the best cinnamon buns in the world at our fair. Lucky for me, I will be there all week long. ;-) My daughter is showing a dairy heifer this year for the first time. It has been an awesome experience for all of us. There's only one problem... the week has only just begun and I am pooped! It's been past my nap time for about three days now! But I am here and I have another awesome interview to share with you. Diane Gaston is here to share a little bit about herself and her books. Enjoy!

Tell us a little bit about your latest release CHIVALROUS CAPTAIN, REBEL MISTRESS.

My latest release is Chivalrous Captain, Rebel Mistress, Book 2 in my Three Soldiers Series (Book 1 was Gallant Officer, Forbidden Lady). After the siege of Badajoz, three soldiers witness a ghastly event that affects the rest of their lives. Chivalrous Captain, Rebel Mistress is Allan Landon’s story. Landon rescues Marian Pallant during the battle of Waterloo and the dangers they encounter in Belgium forge a bond between them that is all but shredded by distance and deliberate deceit. When they meet again in London after the war, the passionate attraction between them is as strong as ever, but now they are on opposite sides of a new war, a social war, and neither intends to admit defeat. Not even for love.

I have to say you have been blessed with amazing book covers!;-) they are just great. Do you get a part in picking out what they will look like?

I am forced to agree with you! My covers have been terrific! All of the Harlequin Historical covers have been great. I don’t get ANY say in the covers. None of the authors do. We each fill out a form about our books and we can suggest scenes that would make a good cover, but after that it is all up to the editors and cover artists. But you can see one of my covers being created in this video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=79j7pIopDGM

What are you working on now?

I just turned in Book 3 of the Soldiers Series, Gabriel Deane’s story. Gabriel appears in the first two books of the series and his life changes in Badajoz, but mostly because he cannot forget the beautiful widow he and the others rescue. He meets her again on the eve of Waterloo and they have a torrid affair, but she refuses to marry him. Years later, though, she seeks him out in London desperate for his help and willing to do anything if he will agree to help her. While writing Gabriel’s story, I had an idea for a Harlequin Historical Undone connected to it. Next, though, is Leo’s story. Leo was one of the brothers in The Diamonds of Welbourne Manor anthology, and it will be the last of the books connected to that story.

How many books do you have under your writing belt?

Chivalrous Captain, Rebel Mistress is my eighth book for Harlequin Historical, but I’ve also written two novellas and two short stories for them. I also wrote two Regency Historicals for Warner Forever under the name Diane Perkins, so that’s ten full length novels altogether. You can see the whole list, including the Diane Perkins books on my website.

Where does your inspiration come from?

Before my Three Soldiers Series, my inspiration often came from one of the characters in the previous book, but this series began with watching the old Gary Cooper movie, The Lives of A Bengal Lancer. The idea of three soldiers and their colonel’s son all sharing an experience during the Napoleonic war took hold.

What’s one thing that you know now that you wished you knew when you started your journey as a writer?

I wish I had understood marketing and promotion better. It took me a while—and some mistakes—to find a balance I’m comfortable with, one that doesn’t cost too much, but makes sure my name and my books are “out there.”

Do you have any advice on writing, getting published, or finding an agent?

On writing....Finish the book! You can’t get anywhere without finishing the book, plus you will learn so much about writing if you craft your story from beginning to end. Afterwards, don’t be afraid to revise. On getting published....The most important thing is to keep trying. Write more than one book and keep submitting. Enter contests judged by editors or agents who might be interested in your book. Get yourself known as a determined writer willing to do whatever it takes to break in. On finding an agent....Do your research! Do not settle for just any agent. A bad or ineffective agent is worse than no agent at all. Make certain you are seeking good, reputable agents who will be interested in selling your work. Look at new agents in good agencies. They will be hungry to build their client list and will have the advice and resources of more experienced agents to assist them.

Now tell us a little bit about Diane. Who are you? What do you do when you’re not writing hunky heroes and romantic love stories?

I am fortunate to be writing full-time. Before I sold my first book, I was a county mental health social worker (psychotherapist) who’d worked half of my career with children and the other half in a specialized outpatient geriatric program. I loved my career and my clients and learned a great deal about people, but I am now pursuing a life-long dream and could not be luckier. I’m married, with two grown children, and live in Northern Virginia with my husband and 4 boring cats.

Diane, thank you so much for being my guest here on Micole Writes Romance. I wish you much success on your new book CHIVALROUS CAPTAIL, REBEL MISTRESS. You can find out more about Diane Gaston and her books at http://dianegaston.com

One lucky commenter will win a copy of Gallant Officer, Forbidden Lady!!!! So make sure to leave your comments or questions for us!!!! Thanks for stopping by.


Hugs

Micole

13 comments:

Johanna R Jochum said...

This book look amazing. I have heard such great reveiws. I have it on my list to get and can't wait to read it. I agree the cover is wonderful. Thanks for sharing today!

eric250r@coosnet.com

Norah Wilson said...

Great interview, Diane! I'm going to love this series! And what is it about historicals? I can't stop reading them. I write contemporary, paranormal, urban fantasy and YA, and should be reading more in those veins, but I love to curl up with an historical. And I can see another trip to the bookstore in my future.

Diane Gaston said...

Johanna, what a nice thing to say about my book. I have been so pleased with the reviews!

Norah, so good to see you here. I'm glad you still love historicals, because that's what I love to write best!

Diane Gaston said...

Oops! forgot to wish your daughter's heifer luck at the fair, Micole. Hope she wins!

Trish Milburn (Tricia Mills) said...

Congrats on the new book, Diane! I agree, you have gorgeous covers.

Diane Gaston said...

Thanks, Trish!

MJFredrick said...

I'm so looking forward to reading this one! It's on my Nook!

Diane Gaston said...

Well, a Nook is almost as good as a Kindle, MJ!!! (I love my Kindle)

Mo H said...

Can't wait to read the next book in this series. Gallant Officer was awesome!!

Delle Jacobs said...

Congrats on the new release, Diane. I'm already looking forward to the third. Kindle for PC is where I read now because I love the "sepia" pages.
I love that video. I notice the illustrator has a real talent for getting a sense of action or drama into the cover.

Merrillee said...

Diane,
I read the first book in the series while we were on a cruise last month, and I loved it, as I do all of your books. I left the book on the ship in their library so someone else will discover your wonderful storytelling. I look forward to reading your new book.

Diane Gaston said...

I love the cover, too, Delle. Of course, the open shirt is not historically correct, but, hey, who cares?

Mo and Merrillee, I'm so glad you liked Gallant Officer, Forbidden Lady. And thanks, Merrillee, for leavingit on the ship! Maybe I'll get a boatload of new readers!!!

Sheri Humphreys said...

This series sounds wonderful. Thanks for sharing the "making a cover" video, I really enjoyed it. Sheri