Thursday, May 05, 2011

AUTHOR SPOTLIGHT: Barbara White Daille

American Romance Author Barbara White Daille is in the spotlight this week with an interview and giveaway...

Barbara, thank you for joining us today.


Can you tell us a little about your latest story, A RANCHER'S PRIDE? What inspired it?
Thanks for asking! A RANCHER’S PRIDE was released this week from Harlequin American Romance. This is the story of Sam Robertson, who has just learned he’s the father of a four-year-old daughter he’d never known existed. When he meets his ex’s sister for the first time, Sam is in a double bind. Not only is he highly attracted to the woman, he finds she has a skill that threatens his bid for custody of his child: the woman knows how to communicate in sign language. And Sam’s little daughter is deaf.
The inspiration for the story came from my idea of wanting to take a popular storyline—the hero who unexpectedly “inherits” a child—and giving it an added twist. Having the child speak another language seemed a great way of adding conflict to the story. As I’m a certified American Sign Language Interpreter, I also liked the challenge of weaving in the second language as an integral part of the book.

When the writing is done, how do you kick back to relax?
With a good book!

What are your favorite genres? Least favorites?
I’ll tackle the least favorite genres first: I don’t think I have any. There might be types of books I don’t read on a regular basis, but a talented author with a well-written story in any genre has the power to reel me in. On my keeper shelf are some fantastic books I’d never have fallen in love with if I’d looked only at the label on the spine.
As for favorite genres, contemporary romance tops the list. :)
I also enjoy traditional romances, romantic suspense and mysteries, paranormals, young adult novels of all kinds... And the list goes on. This results in a very large TBR pile!
It also gives me the double satisfaction of knowing that I’ll never run out of material and that there’s something on hand no matter what I’m in the mood to read.

Describe your perfect romantic evening?
A long, relaxing dinner with my husband at a favorite Italian or seafood restaurant, our secluded corner booth lit by candlelight or, in cooler weather, the glow of a fire. Afterward, holding hands during a moonlit stroll beside a lake or on a beach. Before heading home, a stop at a café for a cup of tea and something rich and gooey and chocolatey. Finally, cuddling on the couch with a movie, a PBS mystery, or the latest episode of one of the CSI shows.

What’s next on your writing agenda?
I’m currently working on my next two books for Harlequin American Romance, both set in the same small town as A RANCHER’S PRIDE.
In the first book, an injured rodeo cowboy returns to his hometown to try to make amends to the people he walked away from years ago. Unfortunately, the person he most needs to make things right with is the one who most wants to avoid him.
In the second book, a young widow who is determined to take care of her three kids on her own runs up against a hero who is as bullheaded as she is and who is bound to fulfill a promise that threatens to destroy her world.

How long have you been writing and what prompted you to begin?
I’ve been writing since the age of nine.
Long before that, though, I’d noticed that my mother often sat at night with a book in her hands. Since my experience up till then was with picture books, I couldn’t imagine how a book without a single illustration could fascinate her for hours on end. But there was no denying it held her attention.
One day, my mother took me to the local library branch, just a few blocks away from our house. I was six and barely able to meet the requirement of being able to sign my own name to receive a library card. But from the time I walked into that room, filled wall-to-wall with books, I was hooked on reading, which later turned into the determination to see my name on the cover of a novel.

Was there a defining moment when you decided to pursue writing as a career?
Yes. When I first dreamed about seeing my name on a book, I had no idea writing could even be a career. The defining moment came for me when, at nine years old, I wrote my first short story. The teacher read it to the class, and I learned the thrill of having someone other than a family member enjoy my work.
I like to joke that many years later—when I was in eighth grade—I wrote my first book and became an overnight success. Unfortunately, fame didn’t last long!
But that didn’t matter, because by the time I’d written that first short story, I had already passed the point of no return. I knew I would become an author.

Plot or Pants?
A hybrid of the two, plotting enough of a course to help me stay on the road, yet allowing me to travel by the seat of my pants often enough to keep things interesting.




How has your process changed through your career?
My process changed as I learned to become a hybrid writer. When I was that nine-year-old storyteller, I had to wing everything because I didn’t know there were such things as outlines. Or plots, for that matter. LOL Once I learned about them, I swung in the other direction. With a little help from my perfectionist nature (ahem!), I began to outline everything down to the last detail.
Just to throw in a few more writing analogies:
Eventually, I caught on to the fact that I liked having a solid foundation (an outline) but also wanted the freedom to venture into shakier territory. Sort of like being thrilled to walk a tightrope but feeling very happy to have the net below.

How would you describe what writing is to you?
Writing is something I’m meant to do. There have been times when life got in the way and I couldn’t write, but I always went back to it. I’m glad I did, because now that writing has become a career for me, I have never been happier or more certain that this is something I’m supposed to do.
It’s not the idea of fame that drives me, because as I said above, I learned very early on that fame is fleeting. That wasn’t—and isn’t—my goal. What I want is to be able to bring as much enjoyment to my readers as I receive when I read other authors’ books.
I have a feeling that goal will last a lifetime!

~~~
Barbara will be stopping by to chat, so please feel free to leave comments or questions for her! And to celebrate her new release, she will be giving away a copy of one of her backlist titles. The winner’s name will be drawn from comments left at the blog today (*US only).

Originally from the East Coast, award-winning author Barbara White Daille now lives with her husband in the warm, sunny Southwest, where they love the dry heat and have taken up square dancing.
From the time she was a toddler, Barbara found herself fascinated by those things her mom called "books." Once she learned the words between the covers held the magic of storytelling, she wanted to see her words in print so she could weave that spell for others.
Barbara hopes you will enjoy reading her stories and will find your own storytelling magic in them!






Her newest title from Harlequin American Romance, A RANCHER’S PRIDE, was released just this week and has received a 4-1/2 star Top Pick review rating from RT Book Reviews.



You can find Barbara online at her web site and blog: http://www.barbarawhitedaille.com/ where you can check out her Virtual Book Tour schedule for A RANCHER’S PRIDE!



You can also reach her via Facebook and Twitter: http://www.facebook.com/barbarawhitedaille and https://twitter.com/BarbaraWDaille


6 comments:

  1. I enjoyed reading this post. Barbara is a new author to me, so I enjoyed learning some things about her. A Rancher's Pride sounds real good. I used to read a lot of the Harlequin American Romance books, which has wonderful authors who do great stories. Reading this makes me realize what I have been missing out on.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Hi, Becky, and what a coincidence--the little girl in the story is named Becky, too.

    Yes, there are many great stories told in Harlequin American Romance books. I hope you'll try them again.

    I'm glad you enjoyed the post and that you like the sound of A RANCHER'S PRIDE!

    Barbara

    ReplyDelete
  3. Hi Barbara,
    It's always nice to hear of your books and of course, your successful career! You've receiving rave reviews on this book - congrats!

    Interesting that you've swung into full outlining. I couldn't outline if I tried. I did once and it killed the book for me!

    ReplyDelete
  4. In reading Dale's post, I realize I would LOVE to outline...but I don't. Maybe it'll kill the book or maybe I'm not as organized as you are!

    Will Sam, Becky and Kayla be making an appearances in the next two books?

    ReplyDelete
  5. Dale - thanks so much. Yes, the reviews have been fabulous, and I'm thrilled!

    The outline is necessary for my publisher, and I'm glad about that as it keeps me focused.

    Thanks for stopping by.

    Barbara

    ReplyDelete
  6. Cyndi - in one of my blog tour stops earlier this week, I'd mentioned that I didn't always outline. When I started writing I was 9 years old and didn't know what an outline was! ;-)

    I've trained myself to write them.

    As for Sam, Kayla, and Becky, yes, they will appear in the upcoming books. Thank you for asking about them! And for your wonderful review of A RANCHER'S PRIDE.

    Barbara

    ReplyDelete