The Spy Bride Challenge and a New Release!

It’s a big week here at Bayard & Holmes!

We are proud to announce the release of our first novella, THE SPY BRIDE, in the Bestsellers’ Collection RISKY BRIDES. Bayard & Holmes are honored to join USA Today Bestsellers Vicki Hinze, Rita Herron, Donna Fletcher, Peggy Webb, and Kathy Carmichael, and veteran authors Kimberly Llewellyn and Tara Randel as we each share our unique take on what it means to be a risky bride.

8 novels and novellas. 8 genres. 8 risky brides.

The Spy Bride Risky Brides Boxed Set final Cover

To celebrate, we’re having two contests!

The Spy Bride Blogger Challenge

We are inviting all bloggers to write a post about absolutely anything espionage or wedding related. Link back to this post to be entered in a contest for a $25 Amazon card and a copy of RISKY BRIDES.

Write about your favorite Bond movie, your favorite historical spook, or how you used to spy on your siblings. Tell us about your wildest bachelor party, you favorite wedding, or your worst bridesmaid’s dress. If you manage to write about both spooks and weddings in the same post, you’ll have your name entered twice.

Be sure to link back to the post at our web site so we see your entry!

The winner will be chosen on Thanksgiving Day. I will attach the names of all entries to a shooting target. Then I will blindfold my lovely daughter, DD, and she will shoot the target. The name that is shot will be the winner of the coveted Amazon gift card.

DD ready to determine the winner.

DD ready to determine the winner.

And for our awesome readers . . .

We have some wonderful prizes for you, as well. Sign up for the Bayard & Holmes Newsletter and be automatically entered to win a Secret Decoder Ring, a stash of Ghirardelli chocolate, or a bottle of sparkling wine from Mumm Napa vineyard.

Bayard & Holmes Newsletter Link–Click Here to Enter

Feel free to enter both contests!

Best of luck to all of you. Can’t wait to see your entries!

 

 RISKY BRIDES

 

 

RISKY BRIDES is on sale for a limited time at only $.99 and is available at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, iBookstore, and Kobo.

 

THE SPY BRIDE by Bayard & Holmes — Spy Thriller Quick Read

With her wedding only days away, a CIA operative and her mother must thwart a top-level traitor before he delivers computer technology to international crime cartels, allowing them to hack US security systems and target thousands of innocents for slaughter.

THE MARKED BRIDE by Vicki Hinze — Romantic Thriller Novel

Nine months after breaking their engagement, Mandy sends Tim, a private security consultant and former Shadow Watcher (spies who spy on spies), an SOS. She’s in trouble. NINA caused the breakup and, though Mandy and Tim have been apart, NINA has struck—targeting Mandy.

THERE GOES THE GROOM by Rita Herron — Romantic Suspense Novel

A jilted bride is arrested for her fiancé’s crimes when he goes on the lam!

THE IRISH DEVIL by Donna Fletcher — Historical Romance Novel

The infamous warrior the Irish Devil was promised a bride by the King of Ireland for services rendered. Faith is as kind as she is beautiful and wants no part of marrying the fierce warrior, but has no choice, and once wed she discovers just how sinful the devil is.

ELVIS AND THE BURIED BRIDES by Peggy Webb — Cozy Mystery Quick Read

Bad boy Jack Jones is finally retying the marital knot! But where is the bride? When Callie and cousin Lovie both go missing, everybody is crying in the chapel. Can canine sleuth Elvis and the Valentine gang find them in time to croon “Love Me Tender” at the wedding?

SOMETHING BORROWED, SOMETHING DEADLY by Kathy Carmichael — Mystery Quick Read

When the groom is found murdered hours before the wedding, can bridesmaid and owner of the Skullduggery Inn, Ashley Sands, clear the bride from imminent arrest? With numerous suspects, all with strong motives, Ash must figure out who-dun-it before the murderer strikes again.

LOVE AT THE SWEETHEART INN by Tara Randel — Sweet Romance Novel

Wedding planner Kara Delaney has had her heart broken too many times to expect a wedding of her own. Lucas Winfield can’t promise forever to any woman. As they work together on a wedding, the attraction is undeniable, but can they overcome their pasts to have a future together?

ALMOST A BRIDE by Kimberly Llewellyn — Sexy Romance Novel

After getting dumped at the altar, Ivy Hammond enters a sexy research study with one rule: don’t fall in love. But with each sizzling assignment, her hot research partner, Kip Lockehart, convinces her some rules were made to be broken.

Flash Fiction Contest — The Cliffside Rose

By Piper Bayard

Since my writing partner, Jay Holmes, is a covert intelligence operative, we often meet and work in remote locations. The day after Valentine’s Day found us plotting our next novel while we hiked up a cliff in a remote section of a desert. Near the top, I noticed a rose. Yes, a rose. In the middle of nowhere. Then another, and another. A trail of four roses that led to the very edge of the cliff.

The Cliffside Valentine

The Cliffside Valentine

I immediately turned to Holmes and expounded on how two lovers quarreled the night before:

Dixie arrived first and watched the sunset from the edge of the cliff, remembering Orlando’s kiss. Just because they had met at a meth lab three weeks ago…Just because they were only sixteen…Just because they were cousins…None of that would keep them from testifying and entering witness protection together before the baby was born. Surely he would make her a Valentine’s bride.

MyPhotos Dixie watching sunset in desert Feb 15, 2014

Orlando topped the rocks behind her and held up four roses. “Check out what I scored from dad’s new girlfriend. Oh, and I got you a cheese grater. Let’s go back to dad’s trailer, and you can make me a pizza.”

Dixie, stunned by his words, numbly took the flowers. “A cheese grater?”

Orlando shrugged. “What else would I bring? Come on. I’m hungry.”

Furious, Dixie flung the roses at Orlando with such force that she lost her balance and toppled over the cliff. The mountain lions rejoiced.

When I finished, Holmes rolled his eyes and said, “Back to our spy thriller . . .”

We agreed to leave the romance to you and to USA Today bestseller Vicki Hinze. So today, we offer you a flash fiction challenge.

Come to the Bayard & Holmes website and tell us your story of the Cliffside Valentine Rose in the comments below. Tell it in 150 words or less, and include “Dixie,” “witness protection,” and “cheese grater.” Click here . . .

Bayard & Holmes

The Cliffside Rose — Flash Fiction Contest

Next Wednesday, March 5, come back and vote for your favorites. USA Today bestseller Vicki Hinze has generously donated three copies of one of my own favorite books, Down and Dead in Dixie, about a young woman who stumbles into the middle of a mob turf war and finds out that to live, sometimes ya gotta die.

Down and Dead in Dixie Cover

“Dixie” and “witness protection” are some clues as to what you will find in this clever, humorous novel. Cheese grater? Nothing to do with Vicki Hinze’s book, and everything to do with a reason to throw flowers at a boyfriend. But that’s another story.

The Happy Man Manual — Valentine’s Day

By Piper Bayard

Guys get the short end of the stick on Valentine’s Day. It’s a day that’s geared toward women. Make her happy, win her heart, pop that question. Buy her roses, get her chocolates, give her a massage, say things to make her swoon. Everywhere men look, television, magazines, the internet, and their girlfriends and wives bombard them with expectations, most of which they can never meet.

Valentine's Day Tree Johntex wikimedia

image by Johntex, wikimedia commons

Women, on the other hand, have it easy. That’s because men come with a three sentence Happy Man Manual: 1) Feed me; 2) Feed my ego; 3) Feed my libido. If a woman does at least two of those three things, she’s made him happy. Three, and bliss ensues. As a result, pleasing men on Valentine’s Day, or any other day, is almost as difficult as watching ice melt, but not quite.

To test this, I asked my husband to suggest ten things women can do to please their men on Valentine’s Day. This was his response:

  1. Show up naked.
  2. Show up naked.
  3. Show up naked.
  4. Show up in a negligee.
  5. Cook his favorite chicken fried steak with mashed potatoes and gravy and chocolate cake.
  6. And make those little prosciutto pastry pinwheels to go with that.
  7. Say again what a good job he did remodeling the bathroom.
  8. Tell him now that you’re with him, you don’t think about Jason Stathom anymore.
  9. Bake him some cookies.
  10. Ask him to show up naked.

So this Valentine’s Day, my heart goes out to men everywhere. Thank you for being men in all of your simple glory. The fact is that if you weren’t so easy, you would have put an end to this holiday before it even got off the ground. I appreciate it that you didn’t. I’m looking forward to whatever creative surprise my husband comes up with this year, whether it’s a pink hat or a heart-shaped mug warmer. Perhaps I’ll thank him with a chocolate cake. Among other things.

Happy Valentine’s Day, everyone!

The Romance Doctors–Poolside Hussy Defense

By Piper Bayard and Jay Holmes

As a Belly Dancer and a Spook, we represent classic romantic archetypes. Therefore, we are qualified to assist with all of your romance needs.

With the month of romance upon us, Valentine’s Day is looming closer, along with all of its romantic pressures. We here at Bayard & Holmes have set aside a negligible portion of our biting sarcasm to devote ourselves to solving your romantic issues.

What to get for the lady or man for Valentine’s Day? How to pop the big question? How to get your mother off your back about how she didn’t walk through the Valley of the Shadow of Death to give birth to you to not see you married? No worries, dear readers, we have answers for each of your questions and dilemmas. Let’s see what’s on your minds this week.

Ellie Ann wants to know what to do about a poolside hussy.

Bennett Sisters boxing Library of Congress

Bennett Sisters, image from Library of Congress

Say I’m at the pool with my hot husband, and a bikini-clad hussy starts staring at him (sure, whatever) but then bends down right in front of him several times (NOT okay). How can I tell her he’s off limits short of a she-bear clawing fight?

Bayard:

Really, Ellie, there’s no need for overt violence, and I’m a bit shocked that you would suggest such a thing. That is illegal, after all. An accidental assault is far more appropriate. While she’s bent over, stand up with your large pool bag and “accidentally” boot her hussy butt into the pool. Remember, plausible deniability is paramount in these situations.

Holmes:

Ellie, assuming he woke up with you this morning, he already answered her. He rejected her in favor of you. Smart man.

But, dear friend, I can’t help myself. Embrace your inner weasel. “Ass Clown” has placed herself in an interesting ethical position. Short of assault, she deserves whatever she gets. Opportunities for fun should not always be ignored.

There are thousands of ways to deal with her without going to jail or answering any civil suits. If your husband agrees, you could simply speak about her derisively as if she wasn’t there. The conversation could include words like “lonely slut” or “desperate whore” or “I wonder how many diseases she has.” If you wanted to be a tad more subtle, he could say, “Wow, if her butt was any bigger she would block out the sun.” Or, depending on the size of her butt, “That’s the ugliest boney butt I’ve ever seen on a human.”

Then you could admonish him with something like, “Sweetie, don’t pick on her. It’s not her fault that she was born like that.”

A water pistol with some nice dye in it might be fun, too. If she’s wearing a dark bikini some white dye would create a charming effect.

We should do no harm to innocents. She’s not innocent so have at it.

We don’t just help happy couples find each other and stay happy, we advise authors about the romances in their books. Texanne is wondering how patient her character should be.

How long does the secondary heroine have to wait after the rotten wife of the tertiary hero leaves him before she makes her move, and what kind of move would be communicative yet leave some room for saving face if it doesn’t work out?

Bayard:

If she’s anything like a college “friend” of mine, approximately 18 minutes, which is how long it took her to drive across town to my newly-ex-boyfriend’s place when I told her I’d split with him.

As for a move? Asking a man about his interests and hobbies, such as his passion for the Civil War, and feigning interest while flaunting a perky, aerobicized butt is a tried and true method. The worst that happens is that he continues to have more interest in General Grant than in her charms.

Holmes:

Her timing needs to be consistent with her character and fit the plot. If not, then you need to explain a new facet of her character and bend your plot.

As far as “how” she gets his attention, I recommend that she put on a skimpy bikini and bend over in front of him three times at the local pool. Just have her watch out for women with water pistols. If you want something more subtle, she could invite him over for lunch, and, depending on how lunch goes, she could progress from there.

Poolside Hussy Sergio Savaman Savarese wikimedia

image by Sergio Savaman Savarese, wikimedia commons

Good luck, everyone, and keep your water pistols handy!

What are your questions for The Romance Doctors? We are here to serve you. And remember, no question is out of bounds, but our answers might be.

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©2013 Piper Bayard and Jay Holmes. All content on this page is protected by copyright. If you would like to use any part of this, please contact us at the above links to request permission.

Our Wish-We’d-Missed Connections

By Piper Bayard and Jay Holmes

Last week, two of our favorites, Jenny Hansen and Natalie Hartford, brought to our attention something called the Craigslist Missed Connections. Those are the ads people put up on Craigslist in an effort to find someone they saw in passing, or even someone they know but are too shy to approach.

Holmes and I, who are both happy with the connections we have, are more concerned with never connecting with certain people again. These are a few Wish-We’d-Missed Connections.

Cupid Triumphant by Bertel Thorvaldsen, image by Carsten Norgaard, Wikimedia Commons

Je Ne Sais Quoi

I saw you at Le Cafe Tres Cher. I am the man who was sitting with my back to the wall near the door. You are a tall, dark, mysterious woman. You had on that short red skirt and those lovely stiletto heels. What legs! Our eyes met as you sauntered past me. You had that je ne sais quoi air about you. I nearly gagged. That’s what happens when you don’t shower for three days.

For God’s sake, take some mercy on us. Ask the boys at Fire Station 17 to hose you down and then find another place to drink your damned coffee!

Clean Up on Aisle Nine

You smiled at me when our shopping carts passed in the vegetable aisle. I was startled because you look like a woman I once knew in Europe during the Cold War. You were wearing a green work out suit. Your lovely blonde hair was in a pony tail. You looked so charmingly girlish. I saw you again in the pharmacy section, and then you tried to follow me into the snack section. You smiled again, giving me chills. The last woman who smiled at me like that tried to knife me in the parking lot.

Fortunately, I was too fast for you, and when I tipped over the potato chip rack it blocked your path and I escaped. Find another place to shop, you psychopath! If I see you at my supermarket again I’m going to knock you upside the head with a frozen turkey and leave you unconscious in the refrigerator aisle to die a cold and lonely death.

Roman Holiday

Our paths crossed on the bus in Rome when I was but a shy teenage girl away from home for the first time. The bus was packed, and your body pressed against my backside. I tried to shift, certain a full grown man like you would never be comfortable being so close to an ingenue like me.

To my dismay, there was absolutely nowhere to move in the crush of flesh. But you, however, found the one way you could move, pressing your disgusting, corpulent, ancient self against me over and over. Honestly! What would your wife, children, and grandchildren think of you if they knew you behave in public like Burlusconi with a meter maid? If I ever see you again, you effing pervert, you will wish I was as nice as Lorena Bobbitt.

Virtual Reality

Holmes and I met you in the Scorpion Pit on the virtual reality game our kids got us sucked into. You began by telling my avatar, “You’re hot.”

New to the game and having no experience with cyber-mashers, I was confused, wondering how small you must be to be hitting on a three-inch computer image. While I was trying to picture that, Holmes began repeating back to you all of the pick up lines you were using on me.

Then it was your turn to be confused. You asked Holmes, “Are you a boy or a girl?”

To which Holmes replied, “I’m both. I have girl parts and boy parts.”

You said, “Wow! Really? Do you pee like a girl or like a boy?”

Holmes said, “I do both at the same time.”

Things became more absurd from there. You were clearly fascinated with Holmes’ fictional description of the body functions of a hermaphrodite, and you tried to find out where he lives for half an hour until we tired of laughing at you and blocked you. You are undoubtedly the sickest person we have ever met online. Don’t come near us. Don’t come near our families. Don’t come near our friends, and don’t come near our avatars or you will find out how well a charged up virtual Scarlett Death Arbalest works against a Smith & Wesson.

Three of these Wish-We’d-Missed Connections are real and one is false. Can you guess which one is false?

We’ll reveal the truth on Friday in The End is Near Mashup.

While you’re waiting with bated breath to find out which creep you don’t have to worry about running into, check out some Craig’s List Missed Connections over at Jenny Henson’s More Cowbell and Natalie Hartford’s Life Out Loud.

What are some connections you wish you had missed?

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Piper Bayard is a recovering attorney with a university degree or two and a belly dancer from way back. She currently pens post-apocalyptic sci-fi and spy novels with Holmes when she isn’t shooting, SCUBA diving, or chauffeuring her children.

 ‘Jay Holmes’, is an intelligence veteran of the Cold War and remains an anonymous member of the intelligence community. Piper is the public face of their partnership.

© 2012 Piper Bayard. All content on this page is protected by copyright. If you would like to use any part of this, please contact us at the above links to request permission.

Best Selling Author Vicki Hinze – A Writer for All Seasons

By Piper Bayard and Jay Holmes

My blogging and spy novel writing partner, Holmes, and I have been restless lately. Fidgety and irritable. Unable to sleep at night. Piper even found herself re-arranging the objects on her writing desk into alphabetical order, muttering about blog hideouts, interrogations, and best selling authors. That’s when we knew it had happened. It was undeniable. We had become Best Selling Author Serial Interviewers.

Rather than deny ourselves the pleasure of talking with more greats like Sandra Brown and James Rollins, we began stalking our new target, Award Winning, Best Selling Author Vicki Hinze. We believe she is the perfect prisoner guest for the Romance Doctors in this season of Valentine Love.

Vicki Hinze

Vicki Hinze can write anything. She has several popular series from romantic suspense to military thrillers to Christian fiction and non-fiction books on the writing craft. She has published over twenty-five books in as many as sixty-three countries and won multiple awards since her writing career began in 1987. A kind and sharing lady who enjoys associating with others, Vicki Hinze is also one of the charter sponsors of International Thriller Writers and served on its Board of Directors.

We are honored today to welcome Vicki Hinze to our blog.

Please make yourself comfortable, Ms. Hinze…. What? Open a window? I do apologize, but that actually isn’t a window. We just put up some curtains because we knew you were coming and wanted to make the cement walls a bit cozier.

Thank you so much for allowing our black helicopter to bring you here to our blog hideout.

I appreciate the opportunity and the ride.  You know I have a special fondness for all things military and those that fly.  (I married a Hurricane Hunter I asked to get into something safer.  He went into Special Ops. 🙂 )

You have a well-deserved reputation for the sort of kindness and generosity that pays it forward. Who were some of the people who helped and influenced you when you were new to the publishing world?

There have been many.  First, I’d have to say Nina Coombs-Pykarre.  At the time she’d published about 60 novels, and yet she invested a great deal of her time bleeding red on everything I wrote.  That was two decades ago, and I still in my head ask myself, “Would Nina buy into this?”  Susan Wiggs has been another mentor.  She’s a very savvy business woman and since the first time I met her has always been home when I’ve had questions or needed to talk over business issues.  There’ve been many mentors over the years, and I’m grateful to all of them.  In this business, you rarely have the opportunity to pay back those who help you, but you can pay it forward, and I’ve tried hard to do that and will so long as I’m able.

You write romantic suspense, military thrillers, science fiction, Christian thrillers, and pretty much everything else. Is there any correlation between events in your life and the types of book you prefer to write at any given time?

Honestly, I write about what I’m fearing most at the time or about something that sets me off like a rocket.  For example, I was midway through a three-book contract for paranormal romance novels when I went to the commissary (grocery store on a military base).  Anyway, this young airman and his wife were standing in the aisle debating between buying a jar of peanut butter and a can of tuna–they couldn’t afford both.  I was stunned to hear that, went home did some research and discovered the lowest four pay grades in the military were eligible for food stamps.  I went postal.  They put their lives on the line for us, their families sacrifice too, and they’re eligible for food stamps?  I went on a “this has to change” binge with elected reps (and it has now) and called my editor.  I wanted to write military romantic suspense/thrillers that depicted the special difficulties soldiers and their families face.  Like custody battles due to deployments.  Military romantic suspense/thrillers hadn’t really been done, but the editor trusted me and we went for it.  That gave me the opportunity to write about a lot of fears–environmental terrorism (before the phrase was coined)–fear of our water supply being poisoned, our food supply, dirty bombs.  I wrote about all of those things in the mid 90s before they were totally on everyone’s radar.

It’s God’s sense of humor, when you get down to it.  I hate to cook, so where do I have the most epiphanies?  In grocery stores.  And in a quirk I can’t explain, I marry my fears to them.  That often results in a new sub-genre, or something being done differently than it has been, but I’m okay with that.  It’s interesting and challenging.  I gravitate toward challenges.

Your books or articles are published in over 60 countries. When publishers in countries that are very different from America contract for your books, do they ever ask you to change things to appeal to their local cultures?

Typically in these situations that’s established in contracts.  That publishers can alter content so that it is consistent with the market in the distribution area. When you think about it, it’s it everyone’s best interest.  Something that is ordinary and totally acceptable in one culture could be extremely offensive in another.  The objective isn’t to isolate or irritate readers.  Now, authors are seeing more contracts call for world rights and those contracts do retain rights on that front.  Since the objective is to provide great reads, it’s a common sense thing to give the work the best possible chance for attaining its objectives.

Christian fiction is a relatively new publishing genre, if you don’t count the Book of Esther. Some people think Christian fiction is all about prayer meetings, devout pioneer women, and girls in fluffy dresses giggling over boys at youth camp, but your books include such gritty turns such as murder and human trafficking. How would you describe the Christian (faith-based) thriller genre to people who are not already familiar with it?

That’s a common misconception about the Christian fiction market and I’m not sure why it exists.  Being a Christian doesn’t exempt you from life’s problems or insulate you from realities occurring in the world.  What it does do is give you tools to cope with those challenges and an understanding that whatever you face, you don’t face it alone.  Christian fiction is as diverse as human beings.  You will find people struggling in relationships, struggling against bad things that happen to them, hard times, and all the rest.  It’s a solutions-oriented genre, and one that embraces constructive solutions to everyday problems as well as ones we hope we never have to face.

Often what happens is out of our control.  But how we react to it is in our control.  Faith provides a foundation to sustain us and knowledge of faith provides us tools and constructive solutions.  You’ll find the same diversity in the challenges, obstacles or conflicts that you encounter in any thriller. 

Your newest faith-based thriller, NOT THIS TIME, was released yesterday. Would you please tell us about it?

This is the third book in my Crossroads Crisis Center series.  The books all stand alone and you need not have read FORGET ME NOT or DEADLY TIES first.  It’s a story about two friends that started what’s become a very successful business.  One marries a man that the other can’t stand.  When he goes missing, is kidnapped, and reported murdered, she becomes the prime suspect.  Her partner, the man’s wife, is hospitalized, and this suspect, Beth, must choose.  More than anything she’s wanted this man out of their lives.  Now she suffers torn loyalties.  Does she do the easy thing or the right thing?  Does she put her effort and energy and resources into protecting him?  It’d be right and best in her judgment to not lift a finger, but can she live with herself if she takes that route?  And unless she finds the truth, will she be blamed for everything that’s gone wrong?  Terrorism rocks the town and all signs point to someone close to her being responsible for it.  She fears the truth.  Fears uncertainty.  And she fears the answer to a question she must ask:  is anyone so evil that they’re beyond redemption?

Hard questions, and sometimes not-so-pretty answers.  But we eventually have to face what is.  Not what we wish or want to be reality.  Yet when we do, we gain gems.  New insights, bits of wisdom that help us endure and grow and move on in life stronger for the experience.  Sometimes we discover that what we thought was true wasn’t true at all, and we face our futures with that expanded vision.

We have a big fan of yours here who would like to ask you a few questions, if you don’t mind a bit of dog hair.

Not a bit.  I love pooches.  Especially this rascal. 

*crosses to intercom* Rolf, please bring in The Love Pooch.

Daisy. She had this opportunity to do this final interview with Ms. Hinze shortly before passing on.

It’s so nice to meet you, Ms. Hinze. *lick, lick, wag, wag* I love your books. You really know how to appeal to your dog readership with all of that action and romance. Dogs are all about being active and loving people.

Loyal, too.  *scratching scruff*.  It’s great to see you, Daisy.

My pet human tells me you enjoy oil painting. I know at least one of your books, BEYOND THE MISTY SHORE, involves a mysterious painting. Do you often incorporate art and painting into your books?

I don’t.  Well, once in a while I do.  It’s hard to get a lot of action and adventure going on there, and since 1995, most of the books I’ve done have had heavy military influences.  Not much art or time for painting in between fighting terrorists and preventing biological, chemical or nuclear attacks, you know?  Yes, Misty Shore, the first Seascape book, is about a mysterious artist and a particular painting of the mystical Maine, Seascape Inn.  I also have an artist play a pivotal role in FORGET ME NOT, the first Crossroads book.  Otherwise, it just hasn’t fit.

I know you also enjoy home improvement. I like home improvement, too. I’ll bet you can do much more with your opposable thumbs and tools than I can do with my teeth. Do you draw on your love of home improvement for any of your novels?

True about the thumbs, Daisy, but your teeth are far stronger, to be sure.  Actually I finished a proposal for a mini-series of books on home improvement recently.  I’m not sure yet I’ll write them, but you know the idea holds appeal.  I love home improvement projects.  A couple years ago, my pet human, a.k.a. Hubby, got tired of the racket and domestic upset and asked for a six-month moratorium on me knocking down any walls.  I opted for a year.  Then last February, we did two major projects.  Both are done now except for a few tidbits.  One more big project to go.  Gutting the kitchen.  Hubby’s an amazing woodcarver (usually of fish and ducks since I tried to kill the carved rattlesnake he had the poor judgment to leave on the kitchen bar overnight) and I’ve conned, er, asked him to build the cabinets.  He agreed and wanted to get started now, but I suggested we wait until after hunting season.  He liked that idea.  Between you and me, Daisy, I did, too.  I need the rest from all that hammering. 🙂

Would you mind dropping by Piper’s place and helping me fix a door frame I chewed? There was this little thunderstorm, you see, and….

I totally understand, Daisy.  *rubbing scruff*  Alex–I was her pet human–hated thunderstorms.  She handled bombs being dropped on the range that jarred windows and teeth just fine, but lightning made her a nervous wreck. She loved to chew ice.  Do you like ice?  Alex would bat the icemaker on the fridge door and get her own.  That worked out fine until we had a hurricane and no electricity.  She batted and batted and got no ice.  She was not a happy puppy about that.

Now, Daisy, it’s not appropriate to ask Ms. Hinze for home improvement assistance. She’s our guest.

*crosses to intercom* Rolf, would you please take The Love Pooch?

Wait.  *Smooch*  Bye, Daisy.  You stay in touch and here’s a “cookie” *dog biscuit* for later when your pet human says it’s okay. 

Thank you, Ms. Hinze. *lick, lick, wag*

Ms. Hinze, can you tell us anything about your current project? Will it be another faith-based thriller, or are you returning to one of your earlier genres?

I’m working on a new series, actually, called Lost, Inc.  Two books are done.  I’m just starting on the third one.  Don’t know the title of it yet, but I think it’s going to be My Deadly Valentine (obviously a February planned release).  They are faith-based romantic thrillers.

You know, every novel I’ve written, regardless of genre, has had suspense, mystery and romance.  The defining factor has been which of those three elements gets emphasis, and to know that I have to develop the story or write it to see what happens.  The Lost, Inc. books are romance with a mystery/suspense element in a faith-based setting.  NOT THIS TIME is a suspense with a mystery and a touch of romance in a faith-based theme.

What comes after this third Lost, Inc. book?  Honestly, I’m not sure.  I have two others in progress that are unrelated, three possible new series, all of which are in some stage of development, a great idea for a new mainstream thriller series, and I’ve been doing a lot of reading in a genre I haven’t tackled to see if I want to tackle it.  Could be fun, but the jury is still out.  I need to read more books in it before deciding for sure.

When I finish this Lost, Inc. novel, I’ll know.  One of the projects will start haunting me, nagging me, waking me up during the night with ideas, and that’s the one I’ll focus on next.

Are there any questions you wish we had asked you here today, or any further comments you would like to share with us?

If you don’t mind, I’d like to expand just a bit on your last question, for your readers who are writers, enough to say that it’s far easier to build a career by writing one type of book.  You build a readership that knows what to expect from you and that helps gain momentum.  I obviously haven’t done that.  I’ve known that I should, but my mind doesn’t work that way and forcing it to violates my vision of success.  I’m a purpose writer of healing books.  So I follow where that takes me.  Self indulgent?  Yes.  Harder to build a readership?  Yes.  Gratifying?  Oh yes.  But if you can write one type of book in one genre, that’s clearly better for building a career–provided it’s the career you want to build.  Just tossing that out there because it’s worth making deliberate choices not drifting onto harder roads.

Thank you so much for sharing your time with us and visiting our blog. It’s been an honor. We’ll have to ask you to put the blindfold back on before you leave, but you’re welcome to take it off before you parachute out over your home. You might like to keep it though. It makes a lovely sleep mask.

Why thank you.  I appreciate the lovely gift, and getting to visit with you here in the cave.  I’ve read about it, of course, but visiting firsthand is a whole different experience.  And my very best *hugs* to you and Holmes, Piper.  Oh, wait.  I nearly forgot.  I brought gifts.  A gold pen for you, Piper.  No, that’s not your name inscribed on it.  It’s the guarantee.  “Thou shalt never experience writer’s block.”  And this is for Holmes. *passes box.*  I know how much Holmes loves things that go boom, so here’s a new ACOG scope for his Sig.  All the bells and whistles–aim is everything, dahlink.

What thoughtful gifts! Thank you so much, Ms. Hinze. You are every bit as gracious as your reputation foretold.

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Ms. Hinze is safe once more in her writing cave, and our interview-junkie shakes have calmed for the moment. Our sincere thanks to this lovely, talented lady whose heart is becoming legend in the writing world. You can find her new book at NOT THIS TIME, as well as all of her books at her website, Vicki Hinze. Also, you can find NOT THIS TIME at a Christian bookstore near you. Find a Christian bookstore near you.