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Monday, May 24, 2010

Author Interview - Cheryl Pierson

Joining us today is Cheryl Pierson. Here is Cheryl’s Bio: Cheryl was born in Duncan, Oklahoma, and grew up in Seminole, Oklahoma. She graduated from the University of Oklahoma, and holds a B.A. in English. She has taught numerous writing classes and workshops over the past years and also works on an individual basis with many of her students, and other authors, locally and nationwide.

Cheryl’s most recent publications include her debut novel, released through The Wild Rose Press in May of 2009, “Fire Eyes,” and her second novel, “Time Plains Drifter.” She has also sold numerous short stories, as a contributor for the Adams Media anthologies “The Rocking Chair Reader: Family Gatherings”, as well as the earlier “The Rocking Chair Reader: Memories from the Attic.” Her short stories also appear in the 2006-09 editions of the Adams Media Christmas anthologies, as well as various other publications, including “Chicken Soup for the Empty Nester’s Soul.” Her holiday short story, “A Night For Miracles,” was released in December, 2009, through The Wild Rose Press.

Look for her third novel, “Sweet Danger,” available Oct. 1, 2010 through The Wild Rose Press, and her short story, “To Make the Magic Last,” through Victory Tales Press, “A Summer Collection” anthology, May 2010. “Scarlet Ribbons,” a Christmas short story, will be released in September, 2010, through Victory Tales Press.

Although Cheryl has written and sold articles to local newspapers as well as these short stories, her first love remains romance novel writing. With the release of TIME PLAINS DRIFTER, her debut novel in the speculative romance genre of paranormal/time travel, she garnered the Honorable Mention Award in the “Best New Paranormal Author” category in the prestigious PEARL contest, presented 3/21/10. Time Plains Drifter also received a 4.5 review from Romantic Times Magazine. She’s now at work on another novel, TIME PLAINS GUARDIAN, in the speculative romance genre of western historical paranormal/time travel and hopes to complete it before the end of the year. She has just completed a western historical novel, GABRIEL’S LAW, and is in the throes of revision.

Cheryl lives with her husband in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, where she has been for the past 25 years. She has two grown children, ages 20 and 23.
[Anne] Yeah Sooners!!!  Sorry, I had to throw that in.  When did you first realize you wanted to be a writer?

[Cheryl]When I was just a child—maybe 4 or 5, I would write in books. My mom couldn’t understand why I kept doing that, and I guess maybe I couldn’t explain to her. I wanted to be the one to write the story we were reading! LOL

[Anne] LOL.  That's cool.  Tell us about your latest book.

[Cheryl] Sweet Danger Blurb: When undercover cop Jesse Nightwalker enters Silverman's Deli, he doesn't expect to find himself at the mercy of Tabor Hardin, a sadistic murderer he helped put in prison five years earlier. Now, Hardin's escaped, and he's out for more blood--Jesse's. Lindy Oliver has had her eye on her handsome neighbor for several months. Fate provides the opportunity for them to finally meet when they both choose the same deli for breakfast. Becoming a hostage was not in Lindy 's plans when she sat down to share a pastry with Jesse, but neither was the hot kiss he gave her when bullets began to fly. That kiss seals both their fates, binding them to one another with the certainty of a vow. But Jesse's got some hard-hitting secrets. With both their lives at stake, Lindy has a plan that just might save them--if Hardin takes the bait. Will they find unending love in the midst of Sweet Danger?

[Anne] What inspired you to write this story?

[Cheryl] I knew I needed to ‘branch out’ into contemporary. I normally write historical western stories, but I had some contemporary stories to tell, too! I had written one before this one that I’m still subbing. Sweet Danger was the first contemporary I’ve sold, though I have sold 2 western historicals and several short stories.

[Anne] How did you go about researching your book?

[Cheryl] I really didn’t have to do a whole lot of research since it is a contemporary. I set it in Oklahoma City because I was picturing the buildings there. I’m a native Oklahoman, and nearly every story I write takes place in contemporary Oklahoma or, in the historicals, Indian Territory, before Oklahoma became a state.

[Anne] Do you have anything new in the works?

[Cheryl] I’m always working on something. My WIP is another contemporary involving an undercover DEA agent whose cover is blown. He’s left for dead in the woods near a young woman’s house. Their relationship is threatened by the drug kingpin who ordered him murdered—and now must see her dead as well.

On the historical front, my latest ms. is being considered by one of the larger houses, and I am keeping my fingers crossed for good news from that direction!

[Anne] What is your writing process like? Are you a plotter or a pantser?

[Cheryl] Oh, definitely a pantser!!! I wouldn’t know what to do if I actually had a PLOT to work off of from beginning to end! LOL It’s more fun this way.

[Anne] I totally agree with you there.  If you could be anyone of your characters, which one would you chose to be and why?

[Cheryl] Hmmm, probably I would be Jenni Dalton from Time Plains Drifter. She is thrown back in time and finds love when she least expects it. My guys…I wouldn’t want to be ANY of them—they all get wounded and have so much angst to deal with! LOL

[Anne] What type of books do you like to read when you’re not writing?

[Cheryl] I read pretty much everything—not just romance. I love alternate history—like Eric Flint’s series. Also love westerns, like Louis L’Amour and Jack Schaefer, Peter Brandvold and Forrest Carter. Lots of great writers out there, and of course, romance novels are at the top of my list always!

[Anne] Name three things you can’t live without (excluding spouses and family because that’s a given).

[Cheryl] Books, pen and paper. (And can I also say, tomatoes? Cause I could eat my weight in those.)

[Anne] Now that’s a new one…LOL…Tomatoes, really? Humm. All right you can have your tomatoes. Where can we find you on the web?

[Cheryl] You can visit my website at http://www.cherylpierson.com

You can e-mail me at fabkat_edit@yahoo.com (I love to hear from readers and other authors!)

You can visit my blogs at: http://www.cherylpiersonbooks.blogspot.com and also at http://www.westwindsromance.blogspot.com

[Anne] Where can we purchase your books?

[Cheryl] You can purchase FIRE EYES and my two short stories with THE WILD ROSE PRESS by clicking on the titles. My short stories are A NIGHT FOR MIRACLES and UNTIL THE LAST STAR BURNS OUT (this one is a FREE READ!)

TIME PLAINS DRIFTER is currently unavailable as I am searching for a new publisher for that book and working on the sequel to it. I do have a few copies for sale if anyone wants to order from me. My e-mail addy is listed above where you can contact me.

SWEET DANGER will be available from THE WILD ROSE PRESS in October, 2010.

I currently have a short story, TO MAKE THE MAGIC LAST, available in a just-released anthology with VICTORY TALES PRESS. The anthology is called “A SUMMER COLLECTION” and (of course) the stories all have a summer based theme. I will be included in a Christmas anthology with VTP that will be released sometime in the fall as well.

I’ve also written several other short stories for Adams Media’s Rocking Chair Reader series and the Chicken Soup for the Soul books. Memories from the Attic: PENNY MEMORIES.  Family Gatherings: THE SUGAR CUBE CURE.   Classic Christmas: True Stories of Holiday Cheer and Good Will: SILVER MAGIC.

[Anne] Is there anything else you’d like to add?

[Cheryl] Thank you so much for having me here! I appreciate this chance to talk about my books and tell you a bit more about me. I will leave you with an excerpt from my EPIC Award Finalist novel, FIRE EYES.

THE SET UP: Marshal Kaed Turner has been deposited on widow Jessica Monroe's front porch by a band of Choctaw Indians with orders from the chieftain: "Do not let him die." But can she save him? He's been severely beaten by a band of renegades that run the borderlands between Arkansas and Indian Territory. The last man they brought to her doorstep died. What will become of Marshal Turner? Can she save him?

FROM FIRE EYES:

Taking up the scissors again, she cut away his clothing, starting with the sleeve she’d already slit. He lay still as she pulled away the bloody chambray. When she lifted the front placket of material from his broad chest, he gave a low, agonized curse. His breath hissed inward, and he shifted.

“What? Did I—oh, my God.” Jessica squeezed her eyes shut, unwilling to believe what she had seen.

The badge. U.S. Marshal. Turner’s lawman’s star wasn’t pinned to his shirt any longer. The pin was jammed down through the material into his bronze skin, a bright crimson ring around the outline of the star itself. By that one act of cruelty, Jessica did not need to wonder any longer whose handiwork this sadistic beating was. She knew, as surely as if the marshal had spoken it.

Now she wished she’d asked Standing Bear if his warriors had killed any of the men who had been responsible for this. She hoped they had surprised the white men, and murdered them all. She hoped they’d taken scalps. She hoped—

“Just pull.” Her patient moistened his lips. “Straight up. That’s how it went in.”

She wanted to weep at the steel in his voice, wanted to comfort him, to tell him she’d make it quick. But, of course, quick would never be fast enough to be painless. And how could she offer comfort when she didn’t even know what to call him, other than Turner?

“You waitin’ on a…invitation?” A faint smile touched his battered mouth. “I’m fresh out.”

Jessica reached for the tin star. Her fingers closed around the uneven edges of it. No. She couldn’t wait any longer. “What’s your name?” Her voice came out jagged, like the metal she touched.

His bruised eyes slitted as he studied her a moment. “Turner. Kaedon Turner.”

Jessica sighed. “Well, Kaedon Turner, you’ve probably been a lot better places in your life than this. Take a deep breath and try not to move.”

He gave a wry chuckle, letting his eyes drift completely closed. “Do it fast. I’ll be okay.”

She nodded, even though she knew he couldn’t see her. “Ready?”

“Go ahead.”

Even knowing what was coming, his voice sounded smoother than hers, she thought. She wrapped her hand tightly around the metal and pulled up fast, as he’d asked.

As the metal slid through his flesh, Kaed’s left hand moved convulsively, his fingers gripping the quilt. He was unable to hold back the soft hint of an agonized groan as he turned away from her. He swore as the thick steel pin cleared his skin, freeing the chambray shirt and cotton undershirt beneath it, blood spraying as his teeth closed solidly over his bottom lip.

Jessica lifted the material away, biting back her own curse as she surveyed the damage they’d done to him. His chest was a mass of purple bruises, uneven gashes, and burns. Her stomach turned over. She was not squeamish. But this—

It was just like what they’d done to Billy, before they’d killed him. Billy, the last man the Choctaws had dumped on her porch. Billy Monroe, the man she’d come to loathe during their one brief year of marriage.

She took a washrag from the nightstand and wet it in the nearby basin. Wordlessly, she placed her cool palm against Kaedon Turner’s stubbled, bruised cheek, turning his head toward her so she could clean his face and neck.

She knew instinctively he was the kind of man who would never stand for this if it wasn’t necessary. The kind of man who was unaccustomed to a woman’s comforting caress. The kind of man who would never complain, no matter how badly wounded he was.

“Fallon.” His voice was rough.

Jessica stopped her movements and watched him. “What about him?”

His brows drew together, as if he were trying to formulate what he wanted to say. “Is he…dead?”

What should she tell him?

The truth.

“I—don’t know.”

“Damn it.”

“You were losing a lot of blood out there,” Jessica said, determined to turn his thoughts from Fallon to the present. She ran the wet cloth lightly across the long split in his right cheek.

His breathing was controlled, even. “I took a bullet.” He said it quietly, almost conversationally.

Jessica stopped moving. “Where?”

25 comments:

s7anna said...

I'm loving the romantic suspense story...it's going on my TBR list.

*hugs*
Anna

Danielle Thorne said...

I read FIRE EYES last year and really enjoyed it. Cheryl has a very unique voice--strong and believable, an important asset for the Western genre. Her books have renewed my interest in the genre, and Plains Time Drifter is on my summer reading list. An Eppie finalist--I know she's one to watch and the view will be a fun trip!

Diane Craver said...

Great interview and excerpt. It's nice to put a face to your name now. :) Congrats on all your successes as a writer and I'm sure you'll hear good news from the bigger house.

Cheryl said...

Hi Anna!

OOOOHHH, that just does my heart good to hear that! Thanks so much!

Cheryl

Cheryl said...

Hi Dani!

Thank you sooooo much. You are very sweet! I appreciate the kind words, and hope you enjoy Time Plains Drifter as much as Fire Eyes. I am really excited about SWEET DANGER coming out--writing a contemporary novel was something I really enjoyed, and plan to do more of. I have another one I'm working on called OF DREAMS FORGOTTEN.

Thanks again, Danielle!
Cheryl

Cheryl said...

Diane!

Hey woman! Thanks so much for coming by and commenting!!! I appreciate that so much--I know you are busy. Well, here's hoping the bigger house does show an interest. I have to tell you I'm on the edge of my seat waiting for the "news"--one way or the other. LOL

Thanks again for your kind words!
Cheryl

Celia Yeary said...

Cheryl and Anne--An excellent, fast-moving interview--just the kind I like. In my opinion, Cheryl is one of the best. I expect to see her one day atop some big best-seller list--she has a real talent and the drive to go after what she wants. She's always professional with a great, positive attitude! Celia

Cheryl said...

CELIA!!!!

What a lovely thing to say!!! I appreciate that so much. You are a dear friend. Thanks so much for coming by to read and comment--I know you are really busy right now.

Hugs,
Cheryl

Julia Rachel Barrett said...

Great interview! Fire Eyes looks and sounds soooo good!

Rebecca J Vickery said...

Hi Cheryl and Anne,
Great interview, Ladies!
I love Fire Eyes and the short story, To Make the Magic Last, is a really action packed short. I loved it and couldn't stop until the end when I read it.
If that "Big House" publisher doesn't want your posse to boycott their books, they will definitely sign you up. LOL

Anne Patrick said...

Hi ladies!
Thank you all for dropping in and supporting Cheryl. All of her books sound awesome. I'm looking forward to reading some of her work.

Cheryl, it is such a pleasure to have you visit. I do hope you'll come back again.

Cheryl said...

Hi Julia!

Thank you so much for the kind words. Fire Eyes was my debut novel and will always have a "special place" in my heart. The heroine is named for my daughter, so I thought it was really fitting that it was the book I sold first. LOL

Cheryl

Cheryl said...

Hi Rebecca!

Well, girl, keep your fingers crossed for me! I'm sooooo hoping that something good comes of that and I do end up with a contract, but even to be considered is a huge honor. Thank you so much for all your support, my friend!

Hugs,
Cheryl

Cheryl said...

Anne,

Thanks so much for having me here! I enjoyed the chance to get to blather on about my books and stuff! I will be glad to come back any time and talk again--maybe sometime in September just before SWEET DANGER comes out? Let me know, and I will be glad to come back and chat again. Again, thanks for the wonderful interview!

BOOMER SOONER!!!!
Cheryl

Keena Kincaid said...

Hi, Cheryl. Great interview, and "Fire Eyes" is still one of my favorite stories.

Cheryl said...

KEENA!!!

THANK YOU SO MUCH!!! That means a lot to me. And congratulations to you on that great review you received last week! EXCELLENT!!!
YOU GO GIRL!

Hugs,
Cheryl

Hales said...

What a great interview. Mizzu fan here hahaha kidding. Rock Chalk Jayhawk. I'm a KU fan. It was great to finally be able to read. Had to leave and thought I'd miss out. I enjoyed reading it and have got to get to yours on my list. I'm so impatient. Going to speak to the Sig other about upping my book allowance. :)

Anne Patrick said...

Cheryl, I'll put you down tentatively (sp?) for Sept.

Untill then, I wish you the best of luck with all your books.

Oh and speaking of the great Sooner state, that's where I'll be spending my vacation this year. Visiting family in Norman and Shawnee. WooHoo!

Cheryl said...

HALES!!!

Good to see you here, woman! Yep, a girl's gotta do what a girl's gotta do!!!Luckily, my husband is the one who truly goes hog wild on books, so he never says anything to me when I buy them. LOL What he DOESN'T like, is that I can't bear to part with them once I get them, so we have books all over the house! LOL I hope you do get a chance to read Fire Eyes and the others. Thanks for stopping by!

Hugs,
Cheryl

Cheryl said...

Hey Anne,

September would be great! Just let me know, K? Thanks again for having me here, and letting me blather on about myself and my books. Loved your questions, girl!

And how cool that you'll be here over your holiday! When are you coming?

Hugs,
Cheryl

Anne Patrick said...

Third week in June. Can't wait!

Laurean Brooks said...

Fascinating interview, Anne. You and Cheryl are awesome writers and promoters. Wish I had half your energy. LOL

Cheryl, I read your short in "A Summer Collection" last night. Loved it! But..the one I REALLY want is "Fire Eyes." This book has intrigued me since I first saw the cover. Then I read the excerpt and am hooked.

I'm putting it on my list. Wish I could afford ALL the books I want. Sheesh! But then, where would I put them?

Congratulations, Anne and Cheryl on your well-deserved awards and/or accomplishments.

May God continue to bless, and may some of that "magic dust" rub off on me. LOL.

Hugs,
Laurie

Cheryl said...

Hey Anne,

I'll put it on my calendar--a Monday? The 21st?? or a different day???

E-mail me and we'll talk about details.

THANK YOU!!!
Cheryl

Cheryl said...

Laurean,

I got my order of the print books of A SUMMER COLLECTION yesterday and was really happy! I haven't had a chance to read yet, but I can't wait to have a few minutes to sit down and read at least one story--gotta catch those "free minutes" when you can!

I'm glad you liked TO MAKE THE MAGIC LAST. And I hope you do get FIRE EYES--I think it's on sale at The Wild Rose Press right now.

Thanks for all your kind words--I don't see myself as a world class promoter, but I do enjoy talking with friends, so maybe these interviews are a good thing! LOL

Cheryl

Anne Patrick said...

Cheryl,
I sent you an email. I put you on my calendar for Sept 20th. It's a Monday.

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