Thank you for joining us today on Soapbox Spotlight! I hope you’re getting your turkey ready! Today’s featured author is Yvonne Harriott, a romance author from Canada. She’s here to talk to us about her latest work, Cat ‘N Mouse.
Great photo! Tell us more about you, Yvonne.
Well, I’m from Canada, and a member of Romance Writers of America. I love to read. Writing is my passion. I always have a book with me. Since I purchased my Kindle back in February, I can now carry over a hundred books with me. I love to travel and I have a sweet tooth. Lay’s potato chips are my Achilles Heel.
What inspired you to write your first book, and what was it?
I’d written a collection of short stories over the years. Most of them were written for contests. Some have won and placed in contests. One particular short story entitled, “The Wedding” was published in Today’s Blackwoman Magazine, September 2001 issue. I compiled all the short stories that I’d written and divided them into two collections – a romantic and a dramatic collection. “The Wedding and Other Short Romantic Stories” – the romantic collection was the first book that I published.
What inspires you to write?
My imagination…just about anything. If I read an article in the paper or see something unusual on the street, whatever it may be, my mind is instantly thinking how can I incorporate it into a story. A perfect example…on my way into work last week I saw a woman, great shape, tanned and fit with long blond hair. She was wearing a black bustier (she was spilling out of it), black shorts and rubber boots walking a pit bull at seven o’clock in the morning. That’s a story waiting to be written.
Haha, nice! How long have you been writing?
I’ve been writing for as long as I can remember. I started off with a diary when I was very young and kept a journal, from there the fiction side developed. I would make up these stories and write them down.
That’s very similar to how I started! Do you travel much concerning your book(s)?
I try to vacation and visit the places where my books are set. If I can’t then the Internet is the next best thing. I was in Chicago back in June so my next romantic suspense or some of it will be set in Chicago.
How do you deal with rejection?
A big bag of Lay’s potato chips and a bottle of water. Then I move on.
My vice is ice cream. What are your current writing projects now?
I’ve just started research for my next romantic suspense novel, Hit ‘N Run. Hit ‘N Run is the final book in the “N” series. I don’t even know if I should call it a series. After I wrote, Hide ‘N Seek, I couldn’t let go of the detective, Samuel O’Malley so I gave him his own book in Cat ‘N Mouse. Hit ‘N Run is Sydney’s story. She was a character in Hide ‘N Seek, living in the shadow of her sister. I hope to make her shine in Hit ‘N Run.
How did you come up with the title?
I can’t start a book or a short story without a title. Nine point nine times out of ten, the title I choose I stick with. I may have the story idea but my fingers don’t hit the keyboard until I have a title. That’s how it was with Cat ‘N Mouse. I know it’s weird.
Very interesting! Can you tell us about the main character?
Alexandria ‘Princess’ Prescott is one of the most exciting characters I’ve ever created. I had so much fun bringing her to life on the page. She’s a daddy’s girl, stubborn, a little self centered, spoiled and rich. She’s also living a double life. One of my reviews on Amazon pointed out that she matures as the story unfolds. That’s so true. There is a transformation with her character and I think that’s when you fall in love with her.
Sam O’Malley, what can I say about Sam? He hates rich people and he’s a perfect match for Alexandria. He’s a control freak with all sorts of issues. He was shot in the line of duty and it messed him up. There are a lot of things going on with him that he needs to work out through out the story, yet he spends most of it in denial. Alexandria is the perfect love interest for him because she pushes him to his limits, constantly testing him.
Is there a message in your novel that you want readers to grasp?
My characters are always going through some kind of drama or crisis, but it all works out in the end. Some times because of what the characters have experienced in their past they have emotional issues. The message is – it doesn’t matter what you are going through you can make it. Don’t let it take you under. Just hang on. There is quote by Franklin Roosevelt that says, “ When you’ve come to the end of your rope tie a knot and hang on.”
What do you look for in a cover?
It has to be sexy and eye-catching. From all the feedback I’ve gotten from Cat ‘N Mouse, it definitely did that. I believe that once a book cover catches your eye you have to pick the book up. I have a fantastic cover designer, Brian Da Silva firstname.lastname@example.org.
You can find Yvonne’s books at the following links: