Saturday, November 23, 2013

Ten Million Reasons by Heather Gray: Character Interview and Excerpt


Character Interview – Genevieve – heroine of the book

Hello Genevieve! What a treat this is. Thank you for coming. I'm going to jump right in with my questions. What do you think makes a good story?

Well, I write articles for magazines, which isn't exactly fiction, so I kind of have to guess here, but I'd say you need a beginning, middle, and an end.  Then throw in some wild drama, a damsel who's either in distress or really confused, and a hero who makes you swoon with how perfect he is.  Add a little family to confuse things between the hero and heroine, a couple of quirky habits to make everyone seem a little more approachable, and – voila! – you've got a great story.

Tell us about your family.

I have an awesome family.  My parents are great, though my dad can still give the scary-ogre look when he wants to.  My sister is divorced, and I get to spend time with her two teenaged children, which is always loads of fun.  My brother's lead detective on the local police force.  He's loud, pushy, and adorable.  He and his wife adore each other and have given me more nieces and nephews than I can keep up with.  My family doesn't always see eye-to-eye about things, and sometimes we get a little loud when we argue.  There are times when we hurt each other, too.  At the end of the day, though, we're family, and that's what counts the most.

As a child, what did you want to be when you grew up?

Promise not to laugh?  I wanted to be a cowboy.  Well, a cowgirl, really, but in the old west.  I wanted to have a big six-shooter and be the person who always came to the rescue and saved the day.

Do you play any sports?

I'll tell you, but you have to promise not to laugh.  It's not like it's a team sport.  Nobody's depending on me to get it right, you know?  I jog.  I mean, I think I'm jogging, but other people who know me just shake their head and pretend to be embarrassed by me.  I've never taken it seriously as a sport.  It's just something I do when I'm under pressure or need to think something through.  I've never cared about proper form or how to be an efficient runner.  I just do it because I like it, and I don't plan to change anytime soon.

Morning Person? Or Night Person? How do you know?

If you really must know, I'm a night owl.  I stay up late, drink lots of coffee, work hard, and then sleep late.  Sometimes I miss my alarm altogether.  I've been known to be late to appointments because I overslept after staying up too late.  Evening appointments.  I, uh, am kind of notorious for it, in fact.

What one word best describes you?

Eclectic.  I'm eclectic.

You just won a huge lottery what is the first thing you'll buy?

After I fund a scholarship for the clown college?  Probably something boring and practical…like a new car, a new pair of jeans, or a lot of groceries.  Maybe all three!


Contemporary Inspirational Romance

Back Cover Blurb:

Money talks, and the way she spends hers tells him all he needs to know…

Richard needs to find a woman he can trust, and he needs to find her fast.  He doesn’t have time to waste on getting to know people, which means dating and interviewing are out of the question.  So how can he get past that initial mask of good behavior to learn what people are really like?  Easy!  Give them ten million dollars and watch to see what they do with it.

Genevieve is a free-lance journalist who talks to herself, constantly forgets to put appointments on her calendar and can’t go anywhere without being asked to take a survey.  Why on earth is Richard interested in her?  She doesn’t know it yet, but he has ten million reasons…

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After the pizza had been demolished, they all walked across the street to enjoy some ice cream. “Double Chocolate Fudge Brownie Monster Chunk for me!” declared Max.

“Peanut Butter Marshmallow Chocolate Madness please!” Genevieve added. Then she and Max went to sit down while Richard ordered the ice cream.

“So, Aunt Gen, you honestly didn’t know who he was?” When Genevieve shook her head, he said, “You’ve got to look him up online. His family grew up around here. Old money. Maybe back to Jamestown. Lots and lots of old money.” She raised her left eyebrow, and Max shook his head and laughed at her. “I know. Money doesn’t make the man. Blah, blah, blah.” After a second he asked, “So, was this supposed to be a date or a business meeting today? You never said.”

Right as Genevieve opened her mouth to tell her nephew it most decidedly was not a date, Richard’s voice came from behind her, “A date, of course. How many business meetings have you been to that include pizza and ice cream? Business meetings have boring foods like salad and steak and desserts you can set on fire because people are busy trying to impress each other.”

Is he out of his mind? Of course he is. Genevieve watched Max and said, “Not a word, you hear me?”

“Not a word about what?” Richard asked.

“Oh, come on, Aunt Gen. If I go to school tomorrow and tell people my aunt is dating the Richard Blakely, do you know how much my stock will go up?”

“Not a word. I mean it.” Max rolled his eyes, let out a loud, over-exaggerated sigh, and threw himself into the kind of relaxed slump that no one but a teenager could master. “Max…”

“Alright, alright, but if you make it to a third date, all bets are off.”

Genevieve shook her head in mock despair, her red curls gamboling with the movement. Then she looked over at Richard and did a double-take, “Since when do men eat girlie ice cream?”

Richard spied his colorful cone and asked, “Girlie ice cream?”

Max tried to warn him, “Don’t argue with her. Trust me. Let her lecture you and get it out of her system. Eat the ice cream as fast as you can. If she can’t see it anymore, she’ll get over it quicker.”

Richard inspected her, slowly took a bite of his cone, and said, “Did you just insult my ice cream?” Then, putting on a hideous fake western accent, he added, “Them’s fightin’ words, don’cha know?”

Max tried to hide his laughter as Genevieve, face dead-pan and voice matter-of-fact, said, “Only girls eat fruity ice cream.”

Richard eyed her ice cream cone and said, “You’re a girl, and I don’t see any fruit in your cone.”

“No man! You never say that,” Max said in sympathy.

“I, Mr. Blakely, Esquire,” Genevieve wound up, “am not a girl. I, Mr. Blakely,” she said his name with added emphasis, “am a woman of sophisticated tastes. You, on the other hand,” she waved her hand dismissively, “are eating girlie ice cream.”

Richard tried to defend his choice of ice cream but was told again and again, “Only girls eat fruity ice cream.”

Finally, Max asked, “So exactly what flavor is that, anyway?”

Shamefaced, Richard answered, “Pineapple Pom Pom Sparkleberry Cheer.” Max and Genevieve laughed uproariously, and Richard joined in. When their laughter settled down, he told Max, “And you are most definitely not allowed to tell your friends at school about that, my boy.”

“Are you kidding me? I’d be shunned for life, a perpetual outcast of the high school social strata. I’m taking that secret all the way to the grave.”

Author Bio:

Aside from her long-standing love affair with coffee, Heather’s greatest joys in life are her relationship with her Savior, her family, and writing.  Years ago, she decided it would be better to laugh than yell.  Heather carries that theme over into her writing where she strives to create characters that experience both the highs and lows of life and, through it all, find a way to love God, embrace each day, and laugh out loud right along with her. 

Where to Find Heather:

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