Author Interview-Ramona Butler
I met Ramona Butler through the Sierra Romance Writers Group and I’m excited to have her visit today.
What inspired you to become a writer?
I can’t remember NOT being a writer, so I think I was born one. In fact, I was barely old enough to read when I wrote a letter to the editor of a large, metropolitan newspaper complaining about a pitifully ugly comic strip character -- and my letter was published.
After that, I was always writing something, primarily for my own entertainment. Yet it wasn’t until I retired that I decided to try for publication, thinking I’d like travel writing. So I enrolled in a class at the junior college and soon found myself writing restaurant reviews, a periodic public opinion column, and nostalgia pieces. I even became a stringer for a small newspaper. And yes, I sold a couple of travel articles, but then I decided to try fiction -- and was hooked.
Who are your favorite romance characters (besides your own?)
That’s a tough question, because I’m a voracious reader, and I usually fall in love with the heroine and hero of whatever book I’m reading at the time. But I will say that I’m a big fan of Suzanne Brockman’s Navy SEALs.
Tell me what inspired Sabrina Says.
I had begun writing fiction while I lived in the Sacramento area. After moving to Nevada, a friend from my California critique group contacted me about our writing together, and I jumped at the chance. She would drive up here and we’d hash out characters and a storyline. Then, she would go home to Sacramento and we would begin our back-and-forth, long distance collaboration
Almost immediately, one of our books became a finalist in the notable Romance Writers of America’s Golden Heart competition. So, of course, we went to the National Conference, which was in Dallas that year. And even though we didn’t win, we enjoyed our fifteen minutes in the spotlight. Returning home, I discovered that while we were away, four “lonesome cowboys” had erected a huge billboard alongside highway 395, south of Reno -- advertising for lady friends. When I saw the newspaper story about that billboard, I just knew we had the basis of our next book, Sabrina Says, which was out first sale. Sabrina Says was published in paperback by a New York publisher, then published in the Netherlands, and then in the US again in hardcover. And I’m thrilled to report that Sabrina Says is now available on the Internet as an ebook, via Amazon’s Kindle ebookstore. It is also available for the Barnes and Noble ereader (the Nook), and will soon be available for several other ereaders.
Other books that I co-authored with Louise Crawford: Jaded Hearts (Romantic Suspense), Trouble in 3-D, Sagebrush Cinderella, Dance with Destiny, and High Flying Love. All, except for Jaded Hearts, are lighthearted, contemporary romances.
My newest book, Border Heat, I wrote alone. It, too, is a Romantic Suspense.
Border Heat excerpt
A gunshot shattered the silence. And from out of nowhere, a large form, blacker than the black night, slammed her to the ground, covered her. Air swooshed from her lungs. She gasped for breath, twisting, thrashing, fighting the hulk that had landed on top of her. When her knee struck soft tissue, she was rewarded with a oath, then a hoarse, low-pitched, "For God's sake, stop your squirming. I'm trying to save your unappreciative hide!"
Stunned by recognition of that husky rumble, she stilled. "Jess?" Lord, he was heavy. Solid muscle.
"Shhh, don't talk." Words breathed against her temple.
"Get off me, you--"
His callused hand covered her mouth and shut off her words. She twisted again, writhing, bucking--with no success whatsoever.