Tink...tink...tink...anyone out there? Hi! I'm Barbara Donlon Bradley - Author - editor and slightly crazy - ask anyone in my family. I hope to use this blog to talk about writing, editing and whatever pops in my head. Hope you enjoy.

Saturday, August 27, 2016

Meet My Latest Guest Ryan Jo Summers! @RyanJoSummers


I want to welcome Ryan Jo Summers! First I’d love you to introduce yourself.

Tell us about your latest release.

It is called Upon the Tide. This was started many years ago when I lived across the road from a marina and worked third shift. Consequently, I spent long hours in the early mornings and afternoons watching the boats and ferries come and go. It was a great time and full of many good memories. As you can probably guess, I love boats and the water. Out of all that came the origins of Upon the Tide.

Most of the action of this book takes place aboard boats, with a heroine who had one previous, terrible boating experience. She is not a happy camper! However, the locale is the Caribbean! And she’s with a sexy hunk who used to be a detective. Too bad someone’s out to kill them, right?

Now I have a few questions for you – I have found readers do like to know fun things about us writers.

1.) Who is your favorite villain – it can be from a book (even one of yours), movie or TV show. And why?

This is a tough one. Until now, I never realized I haven’t focus on the villains because I’m really drawing a blank on any villain beyond the baddies in my books. And they are certainly not my faves. The only villain I can think of elsewhere is Cruella de Ville from ‘101 Dalmatians’ and I really kind of just hated her. So I guess I don’t have a villain I ever cared about.

2.) Who is your favorite character out of your books? Why?

Now this is easier! I adore all my heroes. Most are working class guys, hearts of gold, quiet and sort of shy. Oh, and handsome too. (That always helps) It would be hard to pick one because they are all special and dear in their own way. Interestingly, I’m falling in love with a four year old girl named Ruthie from my current work-in-progress. I tend to use kids as filler, secondary characters. However, Ruthie is such a livewire, she is taking over the scenes and pages with her energy, sass and sparkle. I was not expecting her to have such personality, but I am having fun watching her go. I just wind her up with a sentence or two and off she runs, full throttle!

3.) What do genre do you write? What made you pick that one?

The genre is romance, the subgenres stretch from time travel, paranormal, shape shifting, mystery, Christian, and sweet. Many are blended mixes of any of the above. I also have written a young Adult/ New Adult and a women’s fiction novel. Why? Well, they say to write what you like. My first book I just wrote without even thinking of genre. It had the stuff in it I liked to read. Ditto for the next ones. It started that way as a youngster. I worked up to YA, as a teen, not knowing that was a genre. I simply liked S.E. Hinton style of books. Then I discovered Harlequin, Silhouette, etc. … and started writing what I liked in their imprints. It was my first publisher who labeled it romance and to be honest, I was kind of surprised to say I was a romance writer. Still am, actually.

4.) What are you working on now?

 A Christian romance with Ruthie, who is taking over. Then I want to rewrite an older time travel romance. I’m also in the research stages of another book, which will be set in the Golden Age of piracy. I am on the fence about making it a time travel as well. I think it would be a cool plot that way, but two time travels at once?? Humm, I already can’t remember the current date now as it is.  Two eras, and two locations and I won’t ever know when it is. Oh, and I’m plugging away on edits for my Christian romance coming out in November.

5.) What got you to start writing?

Age ten, family situation that rocked my world. I grabbed pencils and paper and wrote it out and drew illustrations. I didn’t know that I was writing, I was simply trying to cope. I always loved to read since my earliest memories. That situation was the catalyst to figure out to put pen to paper and opened my imagination. It grew from there.

6.) Where do you get your ideas from?

Oh my gosh, everywhere! Anywhere! Songs, pictures and simple comments can open a whole new vein of thought for me. Entire stories have been written from one picture or one chance event. Multiple scenes can certainly be written by a line in a song or any of the above. I keep a file of headlines and newspaper/ magazine pictures that spark something, waiting to turn them into a story. My friends know to be careful what they say to me—it might become part of a book.

7.) What would people who read your work be surprised to find out about you?

I am adopted, though I have known both sets of parents. I have never had any sense of smell—good or bad scents. I tend to become very passionate about issues I care about. Sometimes I get too involved, so that I have gotten into trouble. I prefer trucks and Jeeps over cars and have an insatiable sweet tooth.  I have over fifty houseplants. I make my own suet and hummingbird nectar for the wild birds and I cook my parrot’s breakfast from scratch each week. And I ask questions about everything.

8.) Do you have any special talents?

I can paint and write poetry. I am great at dealing with fractious animals. (by-product of working as a veterinary technician for many years) I have a super green thumb and my cats challenge it constantly. I like getting discounted dead plants from home centers and bring them back to life. The challenge isn’t reviving the plants, it’s keeping the cats from chewing on them. I am also quite crafty with needlepoint, floral design and such.

9.) What was the one piece of advice you received when you were an aspiring author that has stuck with you? Why?

As a child, I was shy, awkward and had low self-esteem. I was quiet and reserved. My mother had an elderly friend who allegedly wrote stories. (I could never find any in print or on line) She saw something in me and took an interest in the kid everyone else tended to overlook. One day my mother mentioned I liked books and sometimes wrote a little something. Her friend studied me quietly, thoughtfully and finally told me I could be an author. In my mind, authors were highly regarded, intelligent, esteemed, and elite individuals. To be one of ‘them’ was an honor and distinction. And this woman, one of the people who had consistently seen value in me, told me I could become one of ‘them’. That simple comment--so thoughtfully spoken—raised my self-worth in ways I could not describe. And now, many years later, I am one of ‘them’—an author.

10.) If you could talk to any famous figure (present, past or fictional) who would it be and what would you talk about? 

Believe it or not, I am coming up blank on this question. I’d love to talk to some departed loved ones, but they are only famous to me.

11.) What song would you say describes your life?

There is no 1 song. Some encapsulate a snapshot of time, for example Jo Dee Messina’s “Heads Carolina, Tails California” embodies a short period in 2004 when I left Michigan. It was literally ‘Toss a dart at the map and see where it lands’. I ended up in North Carolina. I see a bit of myself in “Desperado” by The Eagles/ Clint Black. I also see parts of my life in “Riser” by Dierks Bentley and “Moments” by Emerson Drive in darker periods. I resorted to asking friends and co-workers, since they see me at my best and worst. Answers range from “Doctor Dolittle” and “Old MacDonald had a Farm”, owning to my love of animals and houseful of assorted, beloved pets (aka fur/feather -kids), a Bonnie Raitt song, “I Will Not be Broken”, and a song by Superchick called “Stand in the Rain”. (Admittedly I had to go listen to the last two on YouTube and was pretty flattered when I did)

12.) If you could come back as any animal – what would it be?

Another tough one. It’s a toss-up between cat, dog or horse. Cats are agile, graceful, and small enough to get into interesting places and hardy enough to take care of themselves. The perfect blend of beauty, independence, playfulness and ultimate laziness. Yet dogs are great. They are well suited to their function, whether they are working dogs, toy dogs or whatever. I have a collie and think the world of him. Dogs are the best combination of loyalty and protection, function and form and most are lovely to look at. I am a fan of big, hairy working dogs. Oh but horses! I love horses. Powerful, loyal. Smart. To be able to run like the wind, and still be gentle enough to work with the smallest, frailest humans and strong enough to pull or carry the heaviest loads. A unique mix of strength and gentleness. What a decision! And birds are awesome too, especially the parrots.





  
EXCERPT:

Actually, it seemed kind of simple to her. The bad guys chasing them were being eliminated. Once they were all gone, she and Kade could return to their previous lives. Personally, the reasoning of why the great chase across the Caribbean didn’t mean as much to her as just ending it.
However, as much as she knew she had to return to work and home, a part of her whispered it had been nice just being with Kade on his boat. Nice enough, that whisper nudged, to want to continue it.
Nonsense, she told the nudging whisper, pushing aside a strand of hair picked up on the breeze. Sure, it had not been all bad, but she still had responsibilities back home. Coming here had been a vacation only. Not a romance. Besides, she had no room in her life for romance. Regardless how pleasurable time with Kade was.
Gibberish, her mind whispered back, almost laughing at her.      Huffing irritably, she stomped back to the galley to fix breakfast. Yanking sausage out of the fridge, she slapped it on the cutting board and slashed away at it with a knife.

Links:
WEBSITE: www.ryanjosummers.com   

2 comments:

  1. Thank you, Barbara, for having me today and challenging me with some thought provoking questions.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Good luck, Ryan Jo. Sory if I have multiple comments. Google is being squirelly.

    ReplyDelete