1. Can you tell us a little bit about yourself?
I live in Tucson, Arizona with my husband, two teens and fluffy chow-chow. I started writing mystery novels when was eight-years-old and this unleashed a passion for writing that’s burned in my blood ever since. I’m employed as a fitness professional at a world-renowned resort and an active adult community and do freelance magazine work at home. Most of my published articles are health and fitness related. The Open Water Swimmer, a romantic suspense, is my first novel. Message from Viola Mari, a laugh-out-loud erotic sci-fi romance, will be released on or before January 1.
2. What do you do when you are not writing?
My favorite hobby is swimming. Most days I seek an endorphin rush in the pool early in the morning and anytime I can escape to the ocean, I do and pack swim suits and not much else. I’m also a read-a-holic. If you ask to buy your book, I’ll probably say “yes.”
3. Do you have a day job as well?
Four days a week, I provide personal training services and teach a variety of group exercise classes at an active adult community and a resort. One full day a week and nights and weekends, I write magazine articles and books.
4. When did you first start writing and when did you finish your first book?
I wrote my first mystery novel at age 8 (I still have a copy if you want to read it – just kidding – it’s a little scary if you want to know the truth—I think the squirrels are the main characters J). I published my first book, The Open Water Swimmer, with Extasy Book, September 15th. My second book is coming soon!
5. How did you choose the genre you write in?
I attended a three-week memoir-writing workshop in Prague in 2007 and a fellow writer commented favorably on the more sensual parts of my work and said I’d make a good romance writer. I noticed the more I wrote sex scenes, the more I enjoyed writing them. Romance writing provides a great escape for me as a writer and my aim is to provide readers with the relaxing escape they’re seeking, too. Sometimes when life goes through the roof, I’ve found there’s nothing more relaxing than immersing myself in distracting read.
6. Where do you get your ideas?
Usually they just strike. I read a headline or see a movie and I start hearing dialogue and scenes in my head. I usually can’t sleep until I start getting the ideas down on paper.
7. Do you ever experience writer’s block?
Yes, pretty often. By nature, I’m a “manic writer.” I will write an insane amount per day and even into the night when I’m inspired and then my writing will drop down to only meeting base deadlines for magazine work for a month or more. Before you walk away thinking I’m advocating this style of writing, I will say that if I chain myself to the chair and gut it out for two hours when I’m feeling really flat, toward the end of the first hour, I can usually produce reasonably good work. So I’m aiming to become more disciplined during the “down” days so I can finish more books.
8. Do you work with an outline, or just write?
I always have a plan in my head, but often the characters drive my writing and so I tend to make plot changes on the fly.
9. Is there any particular author or book that influenced you in any way either growing up or as an adult?
Many authors influence my writing as I’m an avid reader. Daphne Du Maurier’s Frenchman’s Creek is my all-time romantic favorite, but I can only dream of delivering that much romance… The exotic travel elements that shine in my stories were inspired by Nicholas Cristopher’s A Trip to the Stars and Jamie Zeppa’s Beyond the Sky and the Earth. Jennifer Crusie is one of my favorite contemporary authors—I love her humor and my books usually incite some chuckles. I always learn from Elizabeth Lowell’s romances, so I try to deliver something new to readers in my work without making the information cumbersome. I even learned from reading Fifty Shades, as much as I disliked those books (how many times did Anastasia feel like Icarus flying close to the sun – 1008?). But I’m a big believer that reading many books makes writing easier, especially if you critique the books you read and try to decipher what makes them work or not work so you can attempt not to make the same mistakes in your own writing.
Blurb for Sabrina's new release:
When children's mystery writer Dana Thomas has recurring nightmares about a swimmer drowning in a race, she aims to change his fate. Her plan to remain objective makes a serious splashdown when she meets her "mission," a towering blue-eyed man with the best cut set of pectorals she's ever seen. Going incognito as a feeding station volunteer for FINA World Cup series races, Dana travels to Greece, Portugal, Honduras, and Tunisia to try to protect him. When heat between the pair sizzles, Dana falls hopelessly in love with this man destined to die.
Elite swimmer and former Navy fighter pilot Jeff Dickson keeps dreaming he's drowning. Recently dumped by his long-time girlfriend, who found him too competitive, Jeff believes his driven personality and international travel schedule can't mix with love. When Jeff meets Dana, he's instantly attracted to her voluptuous body and mysterious personality. When Jeff learns she's been stalking him for weeks at swimming races, he decides she must be psycho.
A series of fateful events before the final race lead Dana to believe her nightmare is about to unfold. Anticipating a dive-in and rescue scenario, Dana is shocked to discover that's only the beginning. Can she change the fate of the man she loves and survive?
Visit Sabrina at www.sabrinadevonshire.com