April 15, 2013

Author Spotlight - Melissa Keir and Forever Love

Today, I've got author Melissa Keir at the Cafe. Hi Melissa and thanks for stopping by!

Thank you Florence for having me on your blog. I’m so excited about sharing myself and my story with your readers.

Well, I'm excited to have you here, and I'll be reviewing Forever Love in this post too, but first, have a seat, order a cappuccino or a latte and we'll get right to your interview!

When you were little, what did you want to be when you "grew up?"

When I was little, I was sure I was going to be a singing star! I used to put on shows for my mom and my grandmother. I’d have my sisters as my back-up singers and we’d lip-sync along with songs from the record player. 


At what point in your life did you realized that being an author was no longer going to be just a dream but a career you were going to turn into reality? 

I believe this dream is just coming true. I’ve only been published for little over a year. I still do Snoopy Dances around my house with every contract offer and each time a book comes out.

Do you have any ‘rituals’ you go through before you write?

I don’t really have any rituals. I love to write in bed, so I grab my laptop and hang out in bed with my dogs. I do need it to be quiet which is why I escape to my room. The hubby loves the TV on for background noise when he works and I can’t stand it.

What was your favorite chapter (or part) of Forever Love to write and why?

My favorite part of Forever Love was the part when Syndie’s father tries to dry his clothes. The scene has a bit of humor in it. However, the humor hides a horrible fear that comes to light.

How did you come up with the title?

The title-Forever Love-came from one of the lines in the book. Syndie and her dad are talking about marriage. I do believe in a forever love like the kind that my grandparents had. I work hard to achieve my own happily ever after each day.

What would YOU like your readers to know about this book or you in general?

Forever Love was a part of the Love, Again anthology with Ruby Lioness Press but the publishing company closed its doors. I got my rights back and reworked the book. I’ve added scenes and changed things to make this story even stronger. Forever Love is one of the books in my Wilder Sisters Series which tells the story of Mr. Wilder’s five daughters who left their hometown after high school, only to return and face their demons. 


What's one piece of advice you would give aspiring authors?  

I would tell aspiring authors to never give up. Forever Love was supposed to be published with one publishing house that closed while the book was in edits. The second time it was accepted, the book made it to print as a part of an anthology, only to have that publisher close as well. I couldn’t give up my dream and neither should they!

Do you have a favorite author?

I have many favorite authors and four very full keeper shelves. I love Laurell K. Hamilton’s characters who make me want to run in the night. I love Liz Crowe’s stories that are so real. I love Sherilyn Kenyon’s world that continues to unfold for me.

What is your favorite quote?

“It’s a bloody beast!” from Monty Python and the Holy Grail. The whole movie is hilarious.

What genre of books do you read for pleasure?

Most of the books that I read are paranormal romance. I love a strong woman and the men who will do anything to protect and love her.

What’s the most amusing thing that’s ever happened to you?

Amusing? Slightly embarrassing? How about the time that I worked as a nurses aid in a local nursing home. This one gentleman was unable to speak well and was confined to a wheel chair. I believe it was a stroke. But I had to bathe him. Let me tell you, his hands were not having any problems that day!

What do you like to do when you’re not writing?

I love to read when I’m not writing. Remember those keeper shelves? Well, I also had four notebooks full of titles of books I read that weren’t keepers.

If all TV shows were real, what show (all time) would you most like to live in?

I was going to say Hawaii 5-0 at first because who wouldn’t love to be with Alex O’Loughlin but the fact that there is so much violence, I’d never get to spend a moment in bed with him. So my second choice would be Days of Our Lives. I’ve always wanted to find out that my sister really stole my child. 


~*~Random~*~

Party dress or blue jeans?
Blue jeans. 

Plotter or Panster? Panster - the characters rule the story.

Print or e-Book? Both please! 
:)

Coastal walks or extreme sports? Coastal walks

Cookies or cupcakes? Cookies

Super hero or super villain? I’d have to say super hero, because the super villains always have to face their judgment.

If I had a free afternoon I’d _________________ Take a nap in the sun on a beach with my hubby.

Peanut Butter: Crunchy, Creamy, or I hate peanut butter and am addicted to Nutella.
Crunchy and only Jif 

You suddenly realize you live in a haunted house. Do you:

a. Run screaming for the door.

b. Bravely go to a church, load up on holy water and try to get rid of the ghost. 

c. Set up ghost hunting equipment to capture phenomenon.
 
d. Call in the Ghost Adventures crew so that you can ogle the lead guy Zac’s amazingly stiff hair when you’re not ogling his….physical attributes.
 
e. Deny you have a ghost and just let it scare the bejesus out of your visitors. 

I would love to do E. But then I’d want to be friends with the ghost and have it play pranks on the other people.

Could you tell us five random facts about yourself?

1. I am the oldest of five girls in my family.

2. I can roll my tongue and do fun tricks with my hand and arm (grosses out the party guests).

3. I’ve been ice fishing. Waiting for the fish isn’t that much fun, no wonder the guys bring beer.

4. I took two years of German and the only thing I can say besides good morning, my numbers, and thank you, is “Where is the bathroom?”

5. I’ve never been to a strip club.

Thanks again for stopping by Melissa and giving us all a chance to get to know you better! And now for the Cafe Review of Forever Love.

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The Cafe Review


After fifteen years in the "big city" of Chicago and a successful career as a jewelry designer, Syndie Wilder makes the decision to move back home to the small town of Amherst, Ohio to care for her widowed father who is showing signs of declining health. With this responsibility on her shoulders, Syndie has no thoughts or desire for romance, but sometimes life will toss us into the unexpected.

After Syndie has moved home, she runs into Thom Johnson, her childhood best friend and the boy who broke her heart in high school. Thom's grown up quite a bit since then and he's never forgotten Syndie or the hurt and humiliation he put her through when he dumped her for more experienced girls. 

Now Thom wants the chance to make Syndie see he's never forgotten her, but Syndie's not sure she wants to risk her heart a second time.

Forever Love is a story of first love lost and found that's well written, humorous and certainly touching, with characters that I easily and quickly came to care about. I'd recommend this book as a great beach-read, so put it on your TBR list for this summer. Forever Love gets a 5 Cup Review!

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Forever Love
by Melissa Keir

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Fifteen years ago, Syndie Wilder left her small hometown- Amherst, Ohio- to escape the pain of losing her best friend and boyfriend. Deciding that Chicago offered more for an up and coming jewelry designer, she enjoyed the big city life until she chooses to return and care for her father. Taking care of her father and relocating her internet business, Syndie has no time or desire for romance but fate has a way of playing with best-laid plans.

Thom Johnson broke Syndie’s heart all those years ago and regrets it every day. As a firefighter, Thom sets out to protect Amherst and redeem himself for his bad choices. However, he never has forgotten Syndie and the hurt he caused her.

When a chance meeting happens, can the two former friends allow themselves the chance to become friends again, or will the sparks turn a childhood friendship into a forever love?
Excerpt:

After getting out of my car, I hiked down the stairs. It was a mild September day, and the beach was fairly empty—just myself and a few seagulls. I walked slowly along the shoreline with my head down, not noticing the person swimming in the water until he began to climb out of the surf.

A dark, cropped haircut framed a face so beautiful that it could be described as the face of a Roman god. He had a strong nose and jawline that showed just a sprinkling of whisker stubble. However, it was his body that made me pause. His muscular shoulders and upper arms looked like they could carry a girl off to bed. His wet torso was covered with hair that immediately drew my eyes and tempted me to caress it. The chest hair tapered down his narrow waist and seemed to lead the way to paradise. I stopped walking and just stared. God, please let there be no drool dripping off my chin. This guy was smokin’ hot! Then he smiled and I noticed his face, complete with a little dimple in his chin. He seemed familiar, but I wasn’t sure where I recognized him from. When he saw that I noticed him, he winked as if he recognized me too.

“Hello! Nice day for a walk, huh? The weather has been kind to us this year.” He spoke and my knees wobbled. His voice was like chocolate, smooth and delicious.

“Hi…Yes…I’m glad the weather is nice enough to get out, but isn’t the water too cold for a swim?”

“Not at all. I enjoy my morning workouts after a long shift at the station. You don’t remember me, do you, Syndie?”

My mind was drawing a blank. How did he know my name? Who was this hottie?

“Not really. You do look familiar, but I can’t place you. I’m sorry.”

“It’s been a long time. We grew up together, our parents were best friends. We even went out in high school. I’m not surprised you don’t remember me, you hightailed it out of Amherst like your butt was on fire after graduation. We never saw each other again. I’m Thom Johnson, but everyone called me T.J.”

Oh wow. I’ve got a lot on my plate and he has changed over the years, but to not know someone so connected to most of my life was baffling. This man had been my best childhood friend. I was T.J.’s girlfriend for a while, but he dumped me for someone who put out. Before we went out in high school, I grew up with images in my head of him as the ideal guy. Our families encouraged our dating, thinking we were perfect together. When he dumped me, it broke my heart. I couldn’t stand watching him move on without me.


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As a writer, Melissa likes to keep current on topics of interest in the world of writing. She’s a member of the Romance Writers of America and EPIC. Melissa is always interested in improving her writing through classes and seminars. She also believes in helping other authors and features authors and their books on her blog.

Melissa doesn’t believe in down time. She’s always keeping busy. Melissa is a wife and mother, an elementary school teacher, a book reviewer, an editor for a publishing company as well as an author. Her home blends two families and is a lot like the Brady Bunch, without Alice- a large grocery bill, tons of dirty dishes and a mound of laundry. She loves to write stories that feature “happy endings” and is often found plotting her next story.

This is what readers are saying about Melissa’s books:

Amazon 5 star review for Second Time’s the Charm - “Such a sweet and heart warming story. As I read it, and the details unfolded, I was engrossed to see if that I thought was going to happen, would really happen.” – Lacey Wolfe, Romance Author

Barnes and Nobel 5 star review for Protecting His Wolfe - “Great read. I couldn't put it down. I really liked the characters, especially Betsie and the Pigg brothers. A love story with suspense and surprise.” – Anonymous

Melissa loves hearing from readers!





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7 comments:

  1. Great interview. I'm glad to get to know you better, Melissa. Wishing you the best on your new book.

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    1. Thank you Diane! I'm always excited to learn more about other authors too!

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  2. Thank you Florence for the wonderful review! I'm so glad to share my book with everyone! :)

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  3. Nice to meet you - Good luck with your new book!

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    1. Thank you for stopping by to read about it! It's nice to meet you too France. :)

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  4. Thanks to everyone who visited with us today!!!

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