Friday, April 6, 2012

Interview with Carolyn Brown

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

First of all, thank all you folks at Much Cheaper Than Therapy for inviting me to stop by your blog again. It's a delight to be here to talk about, One Hot Cowboy Wedding, which just hit the bookshelves this week. It's the fourth book in the Spikes & Spurs Series and I'm so excited about it. I'm going to refill my coffee cup and get another chocolate donut and then we'll be ready. Okay, I'm settled ... now let's answer questions.

I understand you have a new release out called One Hot Cowboy Wedding. Can you tell us a little bit about your fabulous new book?

Oh, yes, ma'am. I could talk about this book forever so how much room do you have? The Spikes & Spurs series started out to be a trilogy about three women who trade in their high heels for cowboy boots and the cowboys who convinced them that sexy cowboys in their boots and hats had something lasting to offer. The three sassy ladies were Austin, Pearl and Jasmine; the cowboys were Rye, Wil and Ace. Then my amazing editor called and asked for a Christmas book and since Rye's brother, Raylen, had been begging for his story to be told, the trilogy turned into a series. But now it's time to tell Jasmine and Ace's story and they do have a story to tell. Ace is about to lose his ranch if he doesn't find a wife within the week so Jasmine, being his best friend, says she'll marry him. It's supposed to be a quiet wedding and in a year a very discreet, quiet divorce. What happens in Vegas stays in Vegas, right? Well, that's the truth unless it gets broadcast on national television. And believe me, it's a lot easier to let the cat out of the bag than it is to put it back into the tow sack!

One Hot Cowboy Wedding is a very interesting title. How did you arrive at that name?

Well, there is a wedding right there at the beginning of the book and it turns out to be very, very hot in more ways than once.

What made you decide to write in this genre?

I'd been writing historical and contemporary books for about fifteen years for the literary market. I wanted to write bigger books that reached a larger audience so I queried Deb Werksman at Sourcebooks with Lucky in Love, a hot cowboy book and she bought it. I loved writing cowboy books so much that it's snowballed from that point. One Hot Cowboy Wedding is my eleventh cowboy book and there are at least three more on the way.

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

Neither and a bit of both. I'm not sure I could ever plot out a whole book and then write totally by the guidelines. It would put my characters in a box and believe me my characters are so sassy, they'd tear the walls down. I don't like to think of myself as a pantster, either. So I suppose, like I've said many times before, I'm like the pilot of a jet airplane. I fill the plane up with all these great characters, have my destination in mind (HEA) and know how to fly the plane. But then the characters hijack the plane and we go off on amazing adventures as we tell their stories.

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

I always do research. I couldn't begin to tell you how many trips I've made to Ringgold, Texas. The one hundred residents of that little place probably think my car is a spy vehicle! LOL! I use the internet for research and I have a multitude of wonderful books but the best thing I could ever advise is simply to go take a look at the place you are writing about. One time I was writing a historical series and had incorporated a scene where the hero and heroine were swimming in this beautiful creek. When we made a trip there and looked at that creek, it was located at the bottom of a red clay slope and the water wasn't something anyone would swim in. Yes, ma'am, I came right home and changed the scene and learned a valuable lesson!

Where did you get your idea for this particular book?

I have no idea where it came from. One day Jasmine and Ace just jumped on the loveseat behind my computer and told me all about their lives and the story wouldn't leave my head until I'd written it.

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

I loved both of the main characters. Ace, because he was the playboy who was never settling down, and he had to finally listen to his heart. Jasmine, because she was the woman who had been burned by love and had to learn to trust her heart. And both of them because they didn't want to ruin their wonderful friendship by falling in love, but their hearts didn't get the message.

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?

Developing characters happens like friendships. At first I don't know much more than my readers but as we get on down the road with the story, I learn more and more. I have a recipe box that I keep a note card on each of my characters inside. That's about as far as it goes!

Do you have any authors that inspired you?

Every author I've ever read has inspired me. Every author I've ever visited with at a conference, a library panel, or had a conversation with in an airport has inspired me. This interview would go on forever if I named them all...however, lately Jill Mansell and Grace Burrowes have been added to my list.

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

Blogs. Word of mouth. Those are both wonderful promotion tools.

What do we have to look forward next?

Keep your boots on! There are more cowboys on the way with at least three more Spikes and Spurs. Mistletoe Cowboy (October) is Creed Riley and Sage Presley's'll meet Creed in One Hot Cowboy Wedding. Just A Cowboy (December) is Gemma O'Donnell and Trace Coleman's story. And Dewar, the last of the original O'Donnell siblings, gets his story after that. (Title is still up in the air but the book will probably be out in the spring of 2013). On the Avalon scene, the second book in the Three Magic Words trilogy, In Shining Whatever, will be out in April and the final one, Life After Wife, in August. Hidden Secrets, a stand alone romance, will be out in December.

Thanks, Carolyn!

And THANK YOU again for inviting me!

To celebrate her book release, Carolyn Brown is offering a free copy of One Hot Cowboy Wedding to TWO lucky commenters on today's blog. (please check the blog Monday night to see if you won. Chances of winning determined by the number of entries.)

She will be around all day today. I'm sure some of you have questions or comments for her, so please ask away...

Carolyn Brown is a New York Times and USA Today bestselling author with more than fifty books published. She credits her eclectic family for her humor and writing ideas. Born in Texas and raised in southern Oklahoma, Carolyn and her husband now make their home in the town of Davis, Oklahoma.

Check out author’s website at
Buy at Amazon, B&N, Wal-Mart and most major book stores.


Anonymous said...

Good morning Carolyn. Thanks for joining us again. It's always a pleasure to see your smiling face around here. Couldn't sleep so I'm up extra early to spread the word. I can't say enough about your writing except to mention that if you haven't read Carolyn's books you're missing out, and One Hot Cowboy Wedding, is sure to be as delightful as her others. I don't have any questions for Carolyn as she's an old friend so I'm turning the floor over to y'all. Enjoy your day with us. And Carolyn, please let me know if Mr. Cabana boy treats you bad or runs out of chocolate, would ya?

Carolyn Brown said...

Good morning, Kim...thank you for inviting me to stop by and prop up my feet on this month long blog tour. And honey, your Cabana boy just keeps bringing out trays of chocolate. I'm thinking he'd look really cute in a Stetson and cowboy boots!

catslady said...

I haven't read you as yet but I have heard good things about your books. They sound like something I would enjoy. Can you read your books out of order or would I be missing too much! Great interview.


Carolyn Brown said...

catslady: They are stand alone titles that can be read in any order and a lot of my readers love the secondary characters enough to go back and read whatever books they have missed. Glad that they pique your interest!

CrystalGB said...

Hi Carolyn. Great interview. Your new book sounds awesome. Love cowboys. Beautiful cover.

Carolyn Brown said...

Crystal GB: I thank you! Jasmine and Ace thank you!
I was so pleased with this cover. It depicts Ace and Jasmine exactly like I pictured them!

Estella said...

I just finished this book and it was awesome!
Can't wait to read Mistletoe cowboy.

Carolyn Brown said...

Estella: Love that word "awesome". So glad that you liked it. Mistletoe Cowboy, Oct.
Just a Cowboy and His Baby, Dec.
And then in March, 2013 we finish up the Spikes and Spurs series with Dewar's story.

Chrisbails said...

I have not read any books by Carolyn, but love cowboy romances. I just found them a couple of months ago and fell in love with them. I love to read and love finding new authors. This book looks great and would love to win and read. Thanks for the giveaway.

Carolyn Brown said...

Chris: Ace is a 100% cowboy so you might like his story! Good luck on the draw!

Connie Flynn said...

Carolyn, So nice of you to visit us and your stories look fascinating. Even though we're in different genres -- I write paranormal thriller -- we're sisters under the skin as far as how we plot, because that's what I do too. I know where I'm going and what my characters want and then the story evolves as I go along.

Thanks for sharing your process with us.

Carolyn Brown said...

Connie, I always love stopping at MCTT. Glad to see I'm not the only one in the crazy way I plot.

Carol L. said...

Hi Carolyn,
I loved your Lucky In Love. I can't wait to read your newest. It sounds like one hot cowboy romance. :) Thanks for the opportunity.
Carol L
Lucky4750 (at) aol (dot) com

Di said...

Carolyn's cowboy stories are so much fun & I love the titles!
sallans d at yahoo dot com

Carolyn Brown said...

Di, thank you and I love my titles, too. My editor and I work together on them but she gets most of the credit. She comes up with just the right touch every single time.

bn100 said...

Congratulations on the book! I enjoyed finding out about the inspiration for the book. The book sounds good.