Friday, May 20, 2011

I’d like to welcome our guest today, Carolyn Brown. It’s a pleasure having you come visit us again at Much Cheaper Than Therapy, where chocolate is plentiful and advice is free. So grab some chocolate and a lounge chair. Your therapy session has begun.

Good morning everyone! I’m smack in the middle of my blog tour for Love Drunk Cowboy and I’m so glad to have a moment to catch my breath and enjoy a little chocolate therapy. And this is some almighty fine chocolate, too! Smooth and very tasty. Yes ma’am, I do believe I will indulge in just one more. You did say that it is formulated special for cowboy romance writers and has no calories or fat grams, didn’t you? Well, in that case, maybe two more would keep me going to the next stop on the tour.

Coming right up! There. Now it's tme for a few questions. I understand you have a new release out called Love Drunk Cowboy. Can you tell us a little bit about your fabulous new book?

Austin Lanier has inherited a watermelon farm from her grandmother right on the Red River and is wasting her two week vacation to straighten up her grandmother’s affairs and put the farm up for sale. Tall, blond and sexy, she has no desire to get her hands dirty planting and harvesting watermelons or to live in Terral, population 386―until she finds the wine cellar and the recipes, and she finds out that Rye O’Donnell isn’t a seventy year old friend of her grandmother. He’s a flesh and blood, hot and sexy 32 year old cowboy who makes sets her hormones to tingling. Rye didn’t figure on Austin leaving her big city life and he damn sure didn’t plan on losing his heart after that night they’d sampled too much of Granny Lanier’s watermelon wine. Austin didn’t plan on falling for a tall dark haired cowboy with spurs on his boots and a gleam in his eye when he looked at her. With a brand new cast of quirky characters and a whole new small town world, Love Drunk Cowboy kicks of the new SPIKES & SPURS series about women who give up their spike high heels for cowboy boots and the cowboys who find out taming them is a helluva lot harder than it looks.

Love Drunk Cowboy is a very interesting title. How did you arrive at that name?

I didn’t! I had another title in mind and my fabulous editor, Deb Werksman, called me to say that she thought this one would work better. I fell in love with it the minute I heard it because it fit the book so well.

What made you decide to write in this genre?

I don’t think I decided to write in this genre. I think this genre decided I would write in it. This is my eighth book in the western/cowboy romance genre and I’m glad to say there are more on the way! I’ve written in historical, contemporary and now western and I love it all, but this seems to be my niche.

Are you a plotter or a pantser and how did it affect the writing of this book?

I’ve been asked this question many times. The only way I can describe it is to say that I’m neither. I try very hard to be a plotter because I’m an organized person but alas, it doesn’t work that way. I plot and plot but my books only follow that business for a couple of chapters. The easiest way for me to explain it is this: I plot (that’s like flying a jet airplane: lots of things to remember, scheduling, etc.), then I fill my plane with all kinds of wonderful characters and since I’m the writer and I’ve got the book plotted, I get to be the pilot, right? Okay, everything is on time, following a schedule and then, boom!! The characters hijack the plane and off we go on an amazing adventure that is very, very different than what I had planned in the beginning!

Did you have to do a lot of research for the book? What are your favorite research books or sites?

I had to learn how to make watermelon wine for this book…very tasty! I use a multitude of research sites and books. Internet is wonderful but I still read books and I’ve even found Amazon is a good site if I need to see what a certain instrument is in wine making!

Where did you get your idea for this particular book?

Back when my youngest started kindergarten, my husband took on a principal/English teacher job in a little bitty town on the Red River called Terral. We spent a year in watermelon country and I’ve always wanted to set a book in that area. My editor, Deb, gave me the opportunity to write a whole series set along the Red. Love Drunk Cowboy is over the line into Oklahoma but the next three are across the River in the small town of Ringgold, Texas.

Which character did you like writing about the most, and why?

Austin was fun to get to know. She kept me on my toes. She’s a smart, savvy woman used to running a department in a huge oil firm and now she’s planting watermelons and making wine. She could have her choice of any bachelor in Tulsa, Oklahoma but her heart wants a swaggerin’ cowboy with a Texas drawl. Oh, yes, she was fun to write about but let me tell you, she insisted that the story be told just the way it happened. She made me tell it the way it was and didn’t even let me dress it up when she fell out of bed at a terrible moment! Oops! No more or you’ll be saying I spoiled the scene.

Tell us about how you develop your characters. Do you create character sheets, do interviews, that sort of thing? How does your research affect your character development?

I’m not so sure I develop characters. They come to me with all their faults and quirky attitudes and I simply write what they tell me. It’s a bit like watching a movie and taking notes the whole time. I see the whole scene, the whole book in my head. Then it’s just getting the right words from brain to paper so my readers can see it the way I do.

Do you have any authors that inspired you?

Oh, yes! My Sourcebook sisters who write westerns are a constant inspiration. Hello, C. H. Admirand and Joanne Kennedy! And then there’s LaVyrle Spencer (we had a wake when she retired and I mourned for years. Please write one more, LaVyrle!) and of course Louis L’Amour and then there’s Carl Hiaason and Randy Wayne White. Did I mention I’m a very eclectic reader?

What do you feel is the most effective promotion you have done for your book?

I think blogging is a wonderful, wonderful avenue for promotion. Readers love to read about upcoming or just-out books. They like to ask questions and they like to know the general jest of the story. Blogs take them to that place. I also do press releases, talk to librarians when I travel, sign in-stock books at any book store I pass and speak at book clubs, women’s clubs, etc.

What do we have to look forward next?

The Spikes & Spurs series has at least three more books lined up in it. Red’s Hot Cowboy will be out in September and Darn Good Cowboy Christmas in October. Then another one will follow in the spring of 2012 which hasn’t been titled yet…but it involves a secret marriage that takes place in Vegas. What goes on in Vegas stays in Vegas…until it is broadcast on national television!

Thanks, Carolyn Brown!

Thank you for inviting me to stop by today. I’ll just have one more chocolate and then I’m off to visit with Sugarbeat’s Books on the 24th. I’ll be checkin’ on the blog throughout the day so talk to me. Ask questions or let me hear if you’ve read one of my past books! Have a chocolate and sit a spell!

To celebrate her book release, Carolyn is offering two copies of Love Drunk Cowboy; one to each of two lucky folks who comment on today's blog. US and Canada only please! (please check the blog Monday night to see if you won. Chances of winning determined by the number of entries.)

Check out author’s website at



Carolyn Brown said...

Good morning everyone! It's great to be here today at MCTT. Got any questions? Ask away...I've got coffee in hand and I'm ready to visit!

Anonymous said...

Good morning Carolyn. I see you beat me to the blog this morning. Darned early risers! We're so glad you could take a break and stopped by though. I see your plate of chocolate is almost gone, I'll refill it in a moment, unless you have some of Granny Lanier's watermelon wine. OF course then I might not make it to my day job.....What is the most challenging thing you've discovered in writing series books? Thanks and enjoy your day with us.

Carolyn Brown said...

Kim: The watermelon wine is in the case over there by the door. I wasn't sure where to put it. Uncork a bottle and forget all about that job business today! What is the most challenging thing about writing a series? I imagine that would be keeping the momentum set on high speed so my readers don't get bored and throw me in the trash with the empty wine bottles!

~Sia McKye~ said...

Kim and Carolyn, very nice interview!

Carolyn, I have to say you're one of my favorite western writers. I'm always amazed how realistic your towns and people are. You have such a wonderful grasp of small towns and the people who inhabit them. There are times I think, if I could just google the town I know it's out there.

I can relate completely to how you write and the characters high-jacking, lol! I see things in movie scenes too and I think the hardest and sometimes the frustrating part is, as you mentioned, just getting the right words from brain to paper so my readers can see it the way I do.

I'll be reading Spikes and Spurs series.

Sia McKye's Thoughts...OVER COFFEE

Carolyn Brown said...

Sia: YOU are my ego boost for today! Thank you so much for stopping by and for the awesome comments. And Sia, if you google, you will find! Those towns DO exist. I might exaggerate a little and put some honky tonks where there's nothing but cows and pasture in real life but the people there don't mind.
I can't wait to hear what you think of Love Drunk Cowboy!

CrystalGB said...

Great interview. Love Drunk Cowboy sounds good. Love the cover.

Carolyn Brown said...

Crystal: Thank you for stopping by today. Glad you enjoyed the interview and the cover. I was very excited about the cover. Sourcebooks does a fine job of all my covers but this one just took my breath. I squealed for days over it!

Estella said...

Loved the Honky Tonk Series! Can't wait to read Love Drunk Cowboy.

Jess said...

Congrats on the new release!
Thanks for the giveaway!

Carolyn Brown said...

Estella and Jess,
Thanks for stopping by! I think there's still some watermelon wine left over from yesterday. Grab a glass and see if you like it!

Alexis Walker said...

Carolyn, what a unique idea for a story, watermelon wine. I love it! Sounds like the whole series will be quite a romp in the hay :-) As a cowboy boot wearing suburban girl, I can relate ;-)