Peeps, today we have Alexa Bourne visiting the blog, telling us all about her wonderful IPN series and her upcoming release, FRACTURED PARADISE!
Let’s get to it, shall we?
Cassandra Dean: Congratulations on the upcoming release of FRACTURED PARADISE! Would you tell us a little about it?
Alexa Bourne: FRACTURED PARADISE is set to release on November 6th from Decadent PUblishing. Rachel Grant, an American lass with too much passion for life and not enough common sense, crushes the dreams of Aidan Camden, an English widower clinging to distorted memories of his late wife. But when someone threatens the lass’s efforts, can Rachel and Aidan set aside their differences long enough to protect the cottage they both want and to keep Rachel safe?
CD: What inspired you to write FRACTURED PARADISE?
AB: Actually, the original story was A LOT different, and I wrote it to help me deal with my English grandmother’s death in 2003. When I started writing for Decadent Publishing, I decided to pull it out, revise it, and use it as a way to celebrate my British heritage.
CD: I see this book is part of the IPN series. Tell us more!
AB: I’m so excited about the IPN series! IPN stands for International Protective Network, which is my fictional bodyguard company I first introduced in my 1st book, Her Highland Champion. The company has offices in Edinburgh and Boston. They specialize in protecting people who have nowhere else to go for help. In each of my novellas, one of the main characters works for the IPN. To learn more about the organization, you can visit the IPN History page on my website.
CD: What do you find easiest/most difficult about writing a series?
AB: The easiest and most difficult aspect is actually the same-creating my own fictional business. I get to choose where it is, what kind of jobs they take, what kind of building they’re in, the background for the company’s birth. BUT these details can also be the most difficult because every single aspect has to be covered- how the organization began, who works there, which countries they work in, etc. Basically, I have to keep in mind everything that I would need if I were creating a real business, from how they are funded, to what the offices look like, to who does all the paperwork. I like the challenge of figuring out every single detail, but sometimes it can be a bit overwhelming too. I have to write everything down in my IPN Bible & hope I never lose it!
CD: Do you have plans to write a book in any other another genre?
AB: I’m actually waiting to hear back from my publisher on a contemporary romance submission AND I’m currently hard at work writing my very first historical romance.
CD: What is your writing process?
AB: I write the rough draft on paper. I don’t plot/plan ahead of time. I usually have one scene idea or one character in my head and I just write. It’s during this rough drafting where I learn the plot and all about the characters. I usually go through 4-6 drafts depending on the story and its size. As I get closer to being finished with the book, I spend more time on the computer.
CD: What’s the best piece of advice you’ve ever received?
AB: Treat others the way you’d like to be treated.
CD: What’s the best piece of writing advice you’ve ever received?
AB: If you want it badly enough, don’t give up.
CD: Who is your greatest writing influence?
AB: Stephen J. Cannell was. He created many of the TV shows I was hooked on as a child, shows that had suspense and the good guys always winning. I wrote a lot of fan fiction (when I didn’t know it was fan fiction), which helped me decide to pursue publication.
CD: What do you enjoy reading?
AB: I love reading romantic suspense, of course, but I also love historicals, thrillers, inspirationals, classics, non-fiction such as biographies, recounts of historical events, true life stories. I read some paranormal stories, but I’m very picky about which ones I read.
CD: What’s your favourite television show? Favourite movie?
AB: My favorite movies are the 3 Bourne movies with Matt Damon. If I had to choose just one of them I’d go with The Bourne Identity. Talk about a tortured hero! As for TV, I love Leverage. It reminds me of my favorite TV show from when I was a kid, The A-Team.
CD: You’ve been involved in NaNoWriMo several times. Would you share a little about your experiences?
AB: I love doing NaNoWriMo! The first year, I wasn’t sure I would be able to write 50,000 words in one month, but I did. Afte that, I refused to fail. Last year was very difficult for me because I had things going on in my “real world” and I honestly didn’t think I’d finish. But my friends and family kept saying, “You’ll do it.” I figured if they had faith in me I couldn’t let them down.
CD: If you were stranded in the middle of a wind-swept and heather-strewn Scotland, what three things would you wish were with you?
AB: A hot Scotsman in a kilt, a great Scotch whisky, and a blanket!
Thanks so much for this opportunity!
CD: And thanks for stoppying by, Alexa! It was super fun times, and we’re now all going to rush out and purchase you books, aren’t we peeps?
Peeps? Where are you??
Technical analyst Rachel Grant arrives in Sunderland intent on tidying up her grandmother’s cottage, but the disaster she discovers requires more than a gentle sweep of a dust rag. Determined to please the most important person in her life, she trades her computer keyboard for a hammer and nails to make the repairs. She doesn’t count on the chilly reception from the locals who want to claim Nan’s home as their own.
Tour guide Aidan Camden wants to buy the cottage. He’s determined to acquire the property no matter how attractive he finds the current occupant. However, when tragedy strikes, throwing them both into a tailspin, he discovers he wants more than the house. He longs for the sexy American as well. Can Aidan put his own ghosts to rest in time to save the woman who’s claimed his heart?
“A bit of a disappointment, I expect.” A rich, deep voice with a twinge of an English accent drifted from behind her.
She whirled around. Her hair whipped against her cheeks and made her wish for the hundredth time today she hadn’t packed all her hair clips.
“Sorry. I didn’t mean to frighten you.”
The stranger paused beside the edge of the clearing, and her heart stuttered. Although no one would mistake him for a Hollywood leading man, this guy could command attention by stepping into a room. Or onto an island.
“That’s okay. You didn’t.” She permitted her gaze to wander over him.
He kept his hands stuffed into the front pockets of faded jeans. The wind tore at his gray long-sleeved shirt, outlining the contours of a well-defined chest. Unruly light brown hair touched his collar. High cheekbones accented his deep-set eyes. Not friendly eyes, but no threat lay behind them either, at least none she could uncover.
He pulled a hand from his pocket and held it out. “Aidan Camden of Dawson Tours, your neighbor from across the water.” He tipped his head toward the way he’d come. Camden. His name sounded familiar, but why? She shook his hand with a hint of hesitation. “Rachel Grant.”
His fingers warmed her skin, his grip strong and confident. Awareness trailed along her arm. Then again, it could be the accent that made her skin tingle. British accents never failed to stir her emotions.
A trace of a smile danced on his lips. “Aye, the American.”
Huh. “You know of me?”
A low rumble of laughter slipped from his mouth, the sound relaxing her from deep within. “Word travels fast here. I saw you paddling your way out.”
Paddling? No, he’d seen her fighting with the oars. Until today, she’d never set foot on a boat, much less held an oar. But she would consider swimming across the Atlantic Ocean if it would make Nan happy.
“Tell me, Mr. Camden, are you in the habit of following foreigners?”
“No, lass, but you’re all the talk of the Roker area. The mighty Grant descendant, come to see about selling the family cottage.”