Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Q&A with PAT WHITE!!!

1. Tell us about your newest release.

UNDERCOVER STRANGER is the first book in my Girl Next Door series. Just think if you were going through your routine day and WHAM! This incredibly handsome, tough, yet honorable guy blasts into your life and accuses you of being a spy. That’s the concept of this series. UNDERCOVER STRANGER will be followed in March by RENEGADE SOLDIER. They both feature former military specialists who are part of a covert national security organization designed to protect the US from terrorism.

2. When did you first realize you wanted to be a writer?

Although I started pursuing writing fiction in 1995, I was always making up stories in my head. I probably had some form of ADD in school so sitting through class was not exactly stimulating. So… I’d make up my own stimulation in the form of secret chambers within the school walls where fantastic things happened. I enjoyed fantastic parties with famous movie stars (Bobby Sherman, anyone), ate lots of chocolate chip cookies, and accepted many Oscar awards.

3. Where do you get your information or ideas for your stories?

Everywhere! The news, crime shows, stories from friends and family. The full moon on a foggy night. I’m not sure if every writer is like this, but I often hear whispers of characters that have yet to be created. I listen and follow their lead, then pay attention to life. Try listening to the gal in front of you in Starbucks (we have two on every corner here in Seattle) and you’ll get enough material for at least five years!

4. What would you say is your interesting writing quirk?

Rocks. I have all kinds of polished stones spread across my desk. For some reason they help me create.

5. What was one of the most surprising things you learned in creating your books?

That story is story. By that I mean that although stories are slightly different, they also have the same rhythm or pattern. In other words, on a nice day we all see a blue sky. We all see the same thing. We expect to see it. If we were to wake up and see a yellow sky we’d be freaked out, right? In other words, story is story. We expect certain things to happen a certain way. This was amazing to learn because it helped me understand that I need to respect that piece in order to satisfy my readers. Now, the trick is to put my own essence into it – I get to draw the clouds! – Purple!

6. What authors or friends influenced you in helping you become a writer?

Suzanne Brockmann. She’s an amazing writer and a quality human being. I have never met Judith McNaught, but she was a huge influence. Also, friends in my Chicago romance writers chapter who inspired me by being published and proving to me that it was possible. Margaret Watson (Harlequin Superromance), Myrna MacKenzie (Harlequin Romance), Suzette Vann (Silhouette), Martha Powers (Pocket), Laurie Brown (Kensington), Wendy Gifford (Harlequin Historicals), Julie Beard (Berkley), and Mary Alice Monroe (MIRA) were my mentors and great friends.

7. What does your family think about your career as a published author?

They are very proud and excited, especially since just last night Starlight Starbright Foundation of Washington hosted a silent auction and a character name in one of my future books went for $2,000! It’s awesome that my work can help kids who are in need.

8. What is coming up next for you writing wise?

I’m working on more Intrigues. Thrills, chills and romance, of course! I’ve also started my second screenplay and am revising my first. The screenplays are romantic comedies. Can never have enough of those in the theaters!

For more scoop on Pat, check out Intrigue fans, don’t forget to visit the blog:

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