Welcome to our third spotlight on this month with Candace Havens. I am particularly excited about her new release this month in the Harlequin Blaze series. Her novel Take Me If You Dare looks just like the hot and spicy romance story you need to keep you warm in winter. I'll be seeing Candace this weekend at her book signing. So be sure to leave comments and share this interview for a chance to win an autographed copy of Take Me if You Dare! Winner will be drawn after midnight on February 28th!
Without further ado, help me welcome Candace Havens to the Daily Dose!
What is the greatest challenge writing for a specific line versus creating your series?
You know, I thought I'd have to write in some kind of box, but that wasn't true at all. They let me do what I wanted and tell the story my way. The only thing they kind of nudged me on was to make sure there was a lot of sex. I didn't mind that so much. (Smile)
You're back to school, you handle press tours, write columns, write books and provide a tremendous support network for established as well as up and coming authors. Where do you find the time?
I'm going to be honest. Right now, I feel a little overwhelmed, but I handle it. I'm no different than most people, I just have a lot on my plate. School is killing me, but I've learned to be even more organized and to work ahead as much as possible. Some days I'm in my chair for 18 hours, but it's okay. I love what I do.
The characters in your novels are individual, what is the first element of the character that comes clear to you? Do you have to 'think' about them or do they flow off the page as you write them?
They are pretty much just there. They talk in my head. If I weren't a writer that admission would send me to the funny place in a white jacket. I don't do a lot of character work before the story, I sort of discover them as the reader does. I do go back in the revision process and make sure they are fully fleshed out. But they reveal themselves to me, in the same way that the reader gets to know them. It's kind of cool.
What is the most challenging part of writing the relationship dynamics of your Blaze characters?
Making the romance the focus of the book was a little tough for me. But I think I managed. It was made easier to be able to go into the guy's head. That was my first time to do that. All of my books up to this point have been first person in the female's head. So it was challenging, but fun.
What do you enjoy reading?
I'm being honest when I say everything. I'll always be partial to paranormal romance, but I like all forms or romance, mystery, thrillers, horror and non fiction. I'm not big on self-help books, but that's about the only thing I don't read.
Would you describe a typical working/writing day? What routines or rituals do you observe to get your writing done?
Okay, this made me laugh out loud. I don't have TYPICAL days. But let me try... The morning starts with the dogs waking me up to let them out. I always promise myself that I can go back to bed but it never happens. I check email for about a half hour and then it depends on the day. If it's earlier in the week I usually work on my columns, interview the celebs by phone or edit my stories in the morning. Then I take a brief lunch break at my desk and check email for work, books and fans. If I homework, that gets done next. Then I work on the book. A lot of nights I have to preview films for the radio job, so that takes up some time. Then I come home and write until about 1 a.m. So the days go from about 7 a.m. to 1 a.m.
As a writer, what's the most difficult part of the process for you? The creating? The editing? The submitting?
I really hate revisions. I do them, but I don't like them. So definitely the editing.
Can you introduce us to Take Me If You Dare?
For Mariska Stonegate, the gorgeous guy she's now met is everything she's looking for in a man—hot, hot and…oh, right. Hot. And just because every pore of his body screams danger and sex doesn't mean she's getting herself into too much trouble….
But Mr. Thomas isn't who he says he is. In fact, his real name is Jackson—no last names, please—and he's a burned CIA agent on the run. And he'll do just about anything to stay alive…including seducing Mariska one hot, steamy night at a time!
What's next for you?
I have three more Blazes to write. I'm working on a YA, and I have another paranormal I'm working on after I finish the YA.
Author to Author
What is the best piece of advice you ever received as an aspiring author?
To focus on the writing. You can't control much of anything in this business, so focus on the writing.
Candace "Candy" Havens is a best selling and award-winning author. Her novels include "Charmed & Dangerous", "Charmed & Ready", "Charmed & Deadly", "Like A Charm" and "The Demon King and I". She is known for writing strong female characters, who save the world, but aren't exactly perfect. She is a two-time RITA, Write Touch Reader and Holt Medallion finalist. She is also the winner of the Barbara Wilson award.
Thank you Candy for coming by today! You can always visit Candace at her website to keep up with the latest releases and more! Please don't forget to leave a comment for a chance to win an autographed copy of Take Me If You Dare.