I sat down with Brenda Whiteside to talk writing, love and her new book, The Power of Love and Murder!
When did you realize or decide you wanted to be a writer?
As long as I can remember, I loved to draw and write. In grade school, I would illustrate my short stories. After high school, I made choice to go into commercial art. But after taking a creative writing class, my direction changed. Writing was much more satisfying.
What has been your best experience as an author so far?
A woman who had purchased the first book in my Love and Murder Series emailed me. She wanted me to send her the next three books. She prefers signed traditional books over eBooks. A month later, she emailed again that she was on the last one and to send her three more books. When I told her there was only one more in the series and it wouldn’t be published for a few months, she asked that I send her any of my print books. Some of my stories are eBook only, but I was able to send her two more print books. I wish I could write as fast as she reads.
How do you research and plan your books? Do you find outlining helps or hinders your process?
Every book is different. In the beginning, I did next to no planning. When I write romantic suspense, I have to do a bit more planning because I typically have more than one villain and a subplot within the plot. Plus, I have a romance plot. It requires some notes and organization to keep it all straight.
Have you learned anything really cool or interesting while researching your books? What’s been the weirdest research you’ve ever had to do?
Amanda in the Summer is a short, but I did a great deal of research. The story spans the years from 1947 to 2004. All the women (grandmothers, mothers, daughters) of one family are named Amanda. One of the Amandas attended Columbia State and took part in the protests. I had to learn all about that era. Then, strangest of all, in researching the name Amanda, I learned it’s of Latin origin and means love.
Somehow (I no longer remember how) I stumbled onto the connection between Venus, Goddess of Love and the Venus Transit. The Venus Transit is when Venus crosses the sun. So the first Amanda was born on that day, December 6, 1882. The transit occurs for the first time in one hundred and twenty two years and my last Amanda sees it. Anyway, there’s more of that in the story. It was just very strange how the timing clicked for my story while I did the research.
Of all of your own characters, who would you most want to date?
Oh dear, it’s a toss up. Mason, in Southwest of Love and Murder, is the sexiest cowboy. He’s also funny and sweet. I did fall in love with him while writing the book. Then there is Jake, from The Power of Love and Murder, my latest release. He’s a rehabbing ex-rocker. He has so much to offer…and I’m partial to sexy rock stars.
What’s next for you?
I’m looking at a three-book series about three women friends who live in Jerome, AZ. Jerome is one of those ghost towns with artists, musicians, and others who have different lifestyles. I might throw in a little supernatural with the suspense and love. It’s percolating in my head.
About The Power of Love and Murder:
Penny Sparks has secrets that can ruin a presidential contender, got her family murdered…and mark her as the next hit.
For thirteen years, Penny Sparks has managed to hide from the political powers who murdered her family. When she unwittingly exposes her true identity, not only is she marked for death, but the people closest to her risk meeting the same fate.
Jake Winters is out of rehab and coming to grips with his demons. When he meets his sister’s roommate, Jake believes Penny might be that someone who can help him find life after rock star status…until her secrets blow up his world.
With a government agent turned hit man closing in on her, Penny and Jake race to expose the presidential contender behind the murders of her family. Even if they win the race with death, the murder that stands between them could end their hope for a new life.
For more information on The Power of Love and Murder, visit:
Brenda and her husband are gypsies at heart having lived in six states and two
countries. Currently, they split their time between the pines of Northern
Arizona, the desert of Southern Arizona, and the RV life. Wherever she roams,
she spends most of her time writing stories of discovery, suspense, and the
tangled relationships of life.
Also follow Brenda:
On the 9th and 24th of every month at http://rosesofprose.blogspot.com
For life’s latest adventure on her personal blog http://brendawhiteside.blogspot.com/