Monday, March 30, 2015

Q & A with Wendy Byrne!

1.  Tell us about your newest release.
 
Hard to Stop is the third book in the Hard Targets Trilogy through Gemma Halliday Publishing. The trilogy focuses on the Shaw siblings who were orphaned at a young age and forced to become assassins for survival. They were able to escape their Serbian homeland and settled in New York when they were in their twenties. Sabrina and Jake both work for The Alliance--a top secret agency specializing in protection and retrieval. Max decided long ago to forget his past and is a trader on Wall Street. The first book, Hard to Kill, introduced Sabrina Shaw as she went undercover to track down child traffickers. In the second book, Hard to Trust, Jake was sent on an assignment to bring in a rogue CIA agent who's suspected of being a double agent. In Hard to Stop, Max Shaw has a contract on his head. But, in a case of mistaken identity, the killer murders his friend Damon instead. To get to the bottom of who is behind the contract, Max must confront his past as an assassin in order to save his own life.
 

2. What was one of the most surprising things you learned in creating your story?
 
When I wrote this trilogy, I pictured Max and Jake with completely different personalities. Jake, prefers the grunge look and Max never walks out the door unless he's wearing a Hugo Boss suit. Jake is more fly-by-the-seat of his pants where Max is very calculating in everything he does. It wasn't until I wrote this last book that I realized why Max feels compelled to always dress and be in control: He's so sickened by what he did in the past, he uses the way he dresses and acts to make himself believe it never happened. 

3.  Do you have any interesting writing quirks or rituals?

I'm not sure how interesting or different this is, but I find that I get more accomplished when I make a pact with another writing friend of mine to get X amount of words written in a specific period of time. Then we check in with each other to keep each other honest. Along the same concept is NANO in which writers unite to try to write 50,000 words during the month of November.

4.  What authors or friends influenced you in helping you become a writer?
 
In 1999 I joined a local chapter of Romance Writers of America, Windy City Writers. Through Windy City, I connected up with a critique group that I'm still close with. Two of the four members gave up writing, but two of us still correspond via email at least once every day. The writing life is not easy and it helps to have support from others who understand your struggles.
 
5.  What does your family think about your career as a published author?
 
My husband and sons are supportive of my writing career. I'm kind of low key about being a writer, but my sisters are my biggest fans, spreading the word about my books.

6.  Besides writing, what other interests do you have?
 
I teach social work classes part time at a local university. I've sewn since I was about 10 or 12, but that morphed into making quilts somewhere along the way. I've made numerous quilts for friends and family over the years. I even have an industrial sized quilting machines in my basement.

7. Can you tell us what is coming up next for you?
 
I have three contemporary romances coming out from Entangled Publishing. A short story (as part of a collection) from Gemma Halliday Publishing this summer and I'm working on a mystery series. 

8. How can readers connect with you online?
 
 Readers can reach me at my website at http://wendybyrne.net or like me on FB at https://www.facebook.com/WendyByrneAuthor or twitter @wbyrneauthor or sign up for my newsletter:  http://www.wendybyrne.net/contact/

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