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CJ: Hi, Amber, it’s great to have you here today! Thank you for taking the time to chat with us for a bit.
Thanks so much for having me! I’m stoked to be here.
Q: Well, obviously, your novel, "Play Fling" is the main reason you’re here today. What can you tell us about this exciting new release?
In Play Fling, playing cupid isn’t Heaven’s reward. It’s Millie Match’s punishment. And if she doesn’t match Brooke within thirty days, she’ll lose her partner in time, the only thing she can count on in love hell on earth. You see, love is simple. But, people are flipping complicated.
Take Brooke, Millie’s current target. She’s pushing forty and freshly divorced yet has no interest whatsoever in dating or new love. Great. Millie decides Brooke must still be in love with her ex. Hooray! She has direction. Until, like bad hair, Elliott keeps ruining Millie’s day. Elliott is too young, and far too hot, for nice and tidy Brooke. Sure the woman could use a fling, but in the end, he’ll only hurt Brooke.
Sometimes, a cupid has to do what a cupid has to do.
Q: I think everyone, including me, wants to know more about the Main Characters in your novel. Can you give us a description of them?
Brooke, our heroine, is a bit stiff around the edges until Elliott comes around, and charms her skirt off. She’s afraid she wasted the best years of her life in her failed marriage and is in denial over why it ended.
Millie is learning how to love. She’s a terrible cupid because she never learned about love or friendship or even responsibility before landing in this matchmaking sentence. She means well but has no idea how to see things through. Her mistakes made me both groan and laugh out loud while I was writing Play Fling.
Elliott is smart. Street smart, book smart and far more mature for his twenty something age than Brooke is ready to accept. It’s a good thing he’s tenacious and a rockstar in bed.
Q: Do your characters have any fun habits or memorable flaws? Can you tell us a little about them?
Brooke is a lot of fun when Elliott awakens the temptress within who’s been hibernating for far too long.
Elliott’s smile combined with the way he pushes up his glasses to frame eyes too blue for anyone’s good make him one of my favorite heroes.
Millie’s good intentions executed so clumsily won my heart every time. I love that I get to spend a few more books watching her stumble to grow.
Q: What makes your characters unique? Why will we fall in love with them?
I suppose the same things that make us all unique. They aren’t perfect. They have tics and quirks and fears. They think they know what they want but screw up getting it. But in the end, they fight for what they need--each other.
Q: I am a fan of memorable quotes. Do you have any favorites from "Play Fling"?
While a lot of hilarious reactions pop out of Millie’s mouth, one of my favorite lines is actually from Brooke and from the first page. Brooke, our heroine, is sitting in a bookstore cafe, totally unnerved, feeling stares and imagines a voice on loud speaker announcing, “Would the pathetic owner of the rude, no show friend please remove her denial and vacate the big table?”
Q: Tell us a little about yourself. What inspired you to write?
Reading a great book, seeing a wonderful movie, often inspires me to create a fictional world myself. But, originally, I can’t say I know what inspired my four year olds heart to decide I would be a writer. I just knew. I had the kind of mom who encouraged all our interests, even the obscure. When I told her I wanted to be an author, she nodded, smiled and asked me what kinds of books I wanted to write. I didn’t know then. I didn’t figure that out until I read my first Johanna Lindsey novel, A Gentle Feuding, and entered what my sister’s lovingly call my “romance novel zone.”
Q: Is there one particular thing you have to do in order to “get in the groove” before/during writing?
With two pre-schoolers hanging from my legs all day, thankfully, I learned how to write on the fly. So, daydreaming is vital for me. Characters often spring into my head then some camp out like their waiting for concert tix to go on sale. Also, music helps me immerse into a scene, especially love scenes. A great beat or killer lyrics always get my muse hot. Some songs show me a story, or a character. Then I latch on and let myself daydream about it until it must be written.
Q: If you could be a fictional character for one day, who would you be? Why?
Two months ago, I’d have said Bella Swan and for Edward and Jacob. But I just finished Touched By An Alien by Gini Koch and Jeff Martini won me over hard. So, I’ll be Kitty. Love, love, love her.
Q: If your book were made into a movie, who would direct it?
Hmmm. Comedy with heart. Penny Marshall.
Q: Ok, one last question before we let you go today, Amber. Finish this sentence in a way that best describes you: “People would be surprised to know that…”
...even though I write love scenes that will make you need a cigarette, even though I’ve sold lingerie and adult accessories for a living before, my closet is not filled with gadgets, gizmos or love swings. All I have is one little whip. (With the right wrist flick, one is all you’ll need.)
CJ: I want to thank you, again, for visiting with us today, Amber. Before you go, I’m sure you want to give us a little excerpt of your novel and some links to were our readers can find out more about you and "Play Fling".
“I think I’ve made a mistake,” Brooke said, amazed her voice didn’t crack. “I think I have to go.”
“Don’t go,” Elliott said again, stepping close.
His words enveloped her. Had she thought his glasses made him irresistible? She’d been wrong. His lashes set off depths so blue, so intense, they might penetrate her soul.
Slowly, he reached up, pushed a lock of hair from her face. His finger ran along her cheek, to her lobe, down her neck and up to her chin. With gentle pressure, he tipped her chin up. Brooke’s hands shook. Her mouth watered. Her mind searched for words and found two: don’t go.
How could she?
His gaze captivated hers. He lowered his head. She closed her eyes. The tremble in her hands spread up her arms, down her legs. Yes. God, yes. Let him kiss her. Let her taste his lips on hers, his breath, his mouth.
“Stay,” he whispered against her lips.
She failed to shake her head, no, she wouldn’t go. He began at her chin, a graze, and in slow succession, breathed and kissed and wet her skin. Kisses. Tantalizing, sensual, tickling. Around her mouth, teasing her. Away again, torture.
Her knees turned to water. She almost whimpered. His mouth found her hungry lips. Brooke gasped. His hands raked into her hair. He kissed her lower lip, moved to the side, never quite meeting her fully. Brooke moaned, awash with a full body shiver. Musk and sandalwood intoxicated her senses. Mint, sweet on her tongue. She swayed her weight toward his body. He slid his hand over her lower back, steadying her.
Her lips parted, begging entry. He took it. His tongue carefully delved, explored as her lips, suckled and pressed. Brooke returned each caress, mindless of all but each sensation coming over her mouth, washing her body.
Her hands rose to his chest. His roamed over her back, ever lower, inch-by-inch to her hips. He broke the kiss and pulled away.
Brooke opened her eyes. She could hardly think.
He swallowed. “I want you.”