What’s the story behind the story? What inspired you to write The Worst Best Friend?
I adore small towns and everything about two best friends falling hopelessly in love. This book is all that and then some, and it’s also the fourth in my Knights of Dallas series (but you can read it as a standalone). The only thing better than whipping up one small-town romance book is a whole series of novels. Four books in, Dallas, North Dakota feels like a magical place where the love is hard fought, the nights are steamy, and there’s also a few four-legged (or feathered) mischief makers around to lend a hand.
There’s no denying the themes in this book are also everything dear to my heart. Impossible crushes, feisty banter, a dash of mystery-suspense, and all the best feels in a place that’s always like coming home.
What’s your favorite scene from your new release, The Worst Best Friend?
Weston’s letters. No contest. They’re a vulnerable, naked glimpse into one man’s battered heart and his rock-solid faith in a love he didn’t think he was worthy of. The letters bring things around full circle when our leads are finally ready to map out a deep, abiding love.
Oh, and honorable mention for all the scenes with Hercules the super pig. That adorable oinker stole my heart and kept it every time I put him on page. Every Dallas book has two heroes, one from the animal kingdom, and this boy definitely qualifies.
If you had to write a blurb for the last book you read, what would it say?
“Hi, I’m dark and achingly intense and so well written you won’t even mind if I’m ripping your heart out.” The book was Malice by Coralee June. Definitely darker than my own books, but I loved it and enjoyed reading beyond my own romance tropes.
What’s your favorite genre to read? Is it the same as your favorite genre to write?
I’m solidly in romance these days for reading and writing, but I do love to mix it up and step outside the genre. I still dip into horror, thrillers, and historical fiction. Well written family saga tearjerkers slay me every time. Kristen Hannah obliterated my heart with The Great Alone.
I’m not in the business of handing out authorly advice, but I think it’s important for anyone who throws words around to get outside their comfort zone. Read the slasher fic or thousand page fantasy novel. Admire what’s different about those books vs. what you’re trying to do. Learn where you can. And most importantly, enjoy.
Do you have any quirky writing habits? (lucky mugs, cats on laps, etc.) Where did you write The Worst Best Friend? (your couch, a coffee shop, a bar… hey – we won’t judge)
I’m extremely boring and vanilla when it comes to work. I plod away with reasonable word counts and daily revisions while carving out time for the other two bajillion things indie publishing involves. If I’ve learned anything useful, it’s to set reasonable goals, rather than stressing over inhuman deadlines or pulling an eighteen hour day that leaves me dragging for a whole week.
What’s the best advice you’ve ever received?
Do not add oil to the pasta water. Ever.