Thank you for having me as a guest on your blog today. I'm excited to be here and talk about my newest ebook release!
1. Tell us about your newest release.
His Reluctant Bodyguard is the second book in my Adventure Cruise Line series. This book and my previous one, High Seas Deception are romantic suspense/thrillers set (at least partially) on fictitious cruise ships. I love cruising and thought readers might enjoy stories that use a cruise as a backdrop.
This is a reunion story, which I've never written before. The heroine, Avery Knox and the hero, Rip Pollendene knew each other in college ten years before His Reluctant Bodyguard opens. Neither of them ever acted on their attraction and they both regretted it. Fate seems to have thrown them back together, only to tear them apart. Rip has been summoned back to his birthplace, the Caribbean island of Benezet, which is on the brink of a civil war. Avery has just started her new assignment as cruise director of the Valiant, and has familial responsibilities of her own. But the two of them can't deny the potent allure of the other. Nor can they ignore the fact that someone is out to kill Rip!
2. What was one of the most surprising things you learned in creating your story?
I learned that voodoo is still common in the Caribbean islands.
I also learned that I have more difficulty coming up with French names than Celtic names. Deciding on names for secondary characters in His Reluctant Bodyguard was a real challenge for me.
3. How long have you been writing?
Since I was nine years old, before that, I printed. But seriously, I started writing stories as a kid. However, I did not take my writing seriously until many years later. Finally, at the end of 2003, I quit my day job to pursue my dream of writing and publishing novels. My first sale to a publisher happened four years later in Sept. 2007, though the book wasn’t released until Oct. 2008.
His Reluctant Bodyguard is my 5th published novel and 6th published work.
4. What authors or friends influenced you in helping you become a writer?
When I sold and released my first novel (The Wild Sight) back in 2007 and 2008, most of my friends and acquaintances were quite surprised. Very few people outside my immediate family knew that I wrote anything besides memos and business letters.
As for authors, some of my early favorites were Phyllis A. Whitney, Victoria Holt, and Mary Stewart. Reading their books instilled my love of romantic suspense. I also loved Terry Brooks’ early work (the Sword of Shannara Series), and it inspired me to add elements of fantasy in my work. I was also (and still am) a huge fan of Diana Gabaldon’s Outlander series.
5. What does your family think about your career as a published author?
My DH and son are very supportive even though neither of them read fiction. They have both talked my books up to co-workers and friends, and helped me with speaking engagements and book signings. Several of my nieces and even a couple of their husbands have enthusiastically read my books. I have actually named characters after several of them.
6. Besides writing, what other interests do you have?
My other great passion is travel. My DH and I have thus far visited 47 of the 50 states, and been to 34 foreign countries. We’ve been to Europe, Asia, Central America, Australia and New Zealand. Technically, we were also on the African continent once when we took a day trip to Morocco, and we’ve been close enough to see South America (Venezuela) though we haven’t set foot there yet.
As for other hobbies, besides reading, I like to knit and crochet. I like to make simple projects like scarves and lap robes/baby blankets.
7. How can readers connect with you online?
I’d love for you to visit my newly updated website: www.LoucindaMcgary.com
I also have an author page on FaceBook: www.facebook.com/loucinda.mcgary You can “like” me and leave a comment on my wall.
Finally, you can see some of my travel pictures on my personal blog, Aunty Cindy Explains It All: www.auntycindy.blogspot.com
I LOVE to hear from readers! Please stop by and say hi.
Today, I am giving away a free download (either Kindle or Nook) of His Reluctant Bodyguard to one randomly selected commenter. Plus, everyone who comments will be in a drawing for a $20 gift card which will be given away at the end of my blog tour (Dec.5th).
His Reluctant Bodyguard
Book 2 Adventure Cruise Line Series
Publication Date September 13, 2012
The last person cruise director Avery Knox expected to see aboard her very first trip out on Valiant is former college football star, Rip Pollendene. A decade ago, she had turned down his advances at the University of Miami and lived to regret her decision. Why is she so reluctant to take the second chance she’s been handed?
Rip Pollendene is the heir apparent to a beautiful island nation. But it’s a heritage Rip has ignored and rejected for twenty years. Now his homeland is on the brink of a bloody civil war with outside forces trying to manipulate the outcome. Is that why someone wants him dead?
How much should Rip sacrifice for a country he hardly knows? And is it sheer coincidence that has thrown golden girl Avery Knox back into his life? Can they stay alive long enough to find out if their love really is meant to be?
Barnes & Noble http://tinyurl.com/ak3k2f7
Blessed with the gift of “Irish Blarney” Loucinda McGary (everyone calls her Cindy) became a storyteller shortly after she learned to read. If she didn’t like the way a story ended, she made up her own ending.
A long-time reader of romances, Cindy discovered and joined Romance Writers of America in 2001. But her stressful career as the manager of a multi-million dollar State and Federally funded program prevented her from doing much writing or traveling. She still managed to squeeze in a little of both, but not enough of either to be truly satisfying. Finally, at the end of 2003 she decided to take an early retirement from her career to fully pursue her twin passions of travel and writing.
On Sept. 14, 2007 Cindy received “the call” from an editor that changed her life, and she sold her first book (actually the third book she’d written since she left her job four years earlier). The Wild Sight was released Oct. 2008 and received a rare and coveted starred review from Publishers Weekly magazine. It also went on to win the “Best First Book” category in the More Than Magic contest. In 2010, the electronic version of Wild Sight became an Amazon bestseller in their Top 100 of all books.
In Sept. 2009, her second published novel, The Treasures of Venice was released. This story previously finaled in the prestigious Golden Heart contest in 2006 under the title Jewels of the Madonna. Treasures of Venice went on to win the Judge a Book By Its Cover contest and to final in several other regional contests.
In July 2010 her third traditionally published novel, The Wild Irish Sea was released, and received a four star review from Romantic Times Book Review magazine.
Cindy likes to set her novels of romance and suspense in some of the fascinating places she has visited. To date, she has visited 47 states and 32 foreign countries.