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Good morning, Laura, welcome to Coffee Time Romance. Why not get comfortable in our cozy recliner, and enjoy some delicious baked treats off the table. They are all calorie free. Karenne makes sure to take all the fattening stuff out. Don’t forget to slip on the relaxing fuzzy pink slippers. The readers are very eager to learn more about romance author, Laura Hamby.

Laura, it is really good to have you with us today at Coffee Time. You have a very colorful website with all the lovely tulips. The readers would love to spend a day with you with all your household and animals.

The day starts early, usually with having to say hello to the dog first, because she has delicate feelings and is really good at guilt-tripping you. Plus, who wouldn’t say good morning to that sweetie? LOL. I have 2 kids still in school and no bussing, so I roust them, get them breakfasted and ready to head out so I can perform the first of my three-time daily bus imitations. Yes, three, because it would be too much to ask for them to be released so I didn’t have to make 2 trips out in the afternoon! My oldest son is a highly functioning autistic young man, and he works on a ranch for half a day, where they work with young adults on the spectrum. While they’re all out of the house, I try to get some writing done. Try being the operative word, since I’m often sidetracked by fun chores like laundry, erranding, feeding the animals if I didn’t have the kids do it before school. We have numerous chickens, mostly hens so we get farm fresh eggs, we have ducks (we also get duck eggs), a pot-bellied pig named Annie Oinkly and 4 turkeys. I try not to interact much with the turkeys, because one of them is going to be Thanksgiving dinner. Once everyone’s back home, I get to start the Homework Chant (“Do your homework. Did you finish your math? Do your homework. I’m pretty sure your homework isn’t on the Cartoon Network...”), start dinner, wait for the Hubby to get home from work. We have dinner at the dining room table and have the most hilarious conversations. Totally non-glamorous, unless I manage to wear a tiara and my hot pink, faux-feathered boa. Yes. I truly have these items. No, I don’t tend to wear them on a regular basis, but only because I don’t want my husband to have me committed.

Why not discuss your release, Side By Side? I love the cover. Tell us about Abbie Black and this series.

Thank you! I’m glad you like the cover - I enjoyed creating it.

The series, Gable Cove: Gladiolus Garden House was born one crazy morning when my bestie, Sheylynn Jones, and I were talking about writing, wanting to do series, and how much we enjoyed writing the Pops’ Girls continuity series years ago, and before we knew it, we’d hatched this idea to do 2 separate series that are connected by a shared location, in this case, the fictional town of Gable Cove, Texas. There are two more books in the series - the second is titled *What’s a Girl to Do?* and the third one is as of yet still title-less! My series of 3 centers on the Gladiolus Garden House, a stately and proud, gently haunted, three-story Victorian home that’s been turned into apartments. In books 1 and 3, the heroines live there, and book 2, the hero lives in the Carriage House at the GGH (as it’s called by the locals).
Abbie Black is a woman in her early 30s, a single mother by happenstance - widowed by the untimely death of her husband and left with a stepdaughter to raise. She owns the Coffee Klatch downtown, and ably supports herself and Lily. She loves her stepdaughter, but as is typical with teens, is at loggerheads with Lily. It doesn’t help that Lily’s mother is still living, but not a presence in her life. The story starts with Abbie realizing she needs to take care of herself, too, and that it’s okay to think of herself now and again.

Abbie is a refreshing character. Did you have anyone in mind when you were creating her character?

I like strong, resourceful heroines who don’t necessarily need a man in order to have a fulfilling life. Abbie and Ike hook up rather by happy accident and discover they really like each other. I didn’t really base Abbie on anyone in particular. I chose character traits for her that would make her an admirable person, but could also stymie her in her pursuit of her own life - like a selfless attitude that leaves her feeling guilty for dating her stepdaughter’s social studies teacher, and gave her a bit of a darker history with her late husband that also causes some issues in her new relationship with Ike.

Can you enlighten the readers on the other books in the series?

Book 2 is *What’s a Girl to Do?* and stars Taylor Elizabeth Bennett and Levi Moore. They had a little flirt going on in *Side by Side*, and find themselves in quite an unconventional romance. The currently untitled 3rd novella stars Sierra Maddox and Mace Wyatt. You meet Sierra briefly, in *Side by Side*, too. I can tell you with Sierra and Mace, it’s an already established romance, not a “new meet” kind of one, which is new and different for me to write. I’m still working on Book 3. Book 2 is in final edits. Our schedule is a little off, due to Life intervening for both Sheylynn and myself this summer.

Do you write on schedule or when the inspiration strikes?

I was on nice writing schedule, inspired with the series and moving right along, making good progress, and then Life! I got good and sick and I discovered a new antibiotic allergy. I’ve been off my schedule with the Gable Cove: Gladiolus Garden House series since then, but with the kids now back in school, I’m working my way back to re-establishing my writing time. However, the weekend after Sharknado 2: The Second One aired on Syfy, I watched my DVR’d Sharknado and Sharknado 2 and was inspired to write what I called a Ridiculous Disaster-Themed Romance - a short novella entitled When Angie Went to Hale. It was a lot of fun to write, just plain silly, and inspired by Sharknado, although no, there are no sharks involved in my story. So, I suppose the answer is I do write both on a schedule and as inspiration strikes. Whatever tickles the Muse’s fancy. Hehe. But inspiration is paramount.

Can you describe your writing place?

I park myself on my sectional sofa, in “My Spot" - the chaise part of the couch in the family room. I have a table to the right to put my drinks and snacks upon. I usually have my dog, Callie Roo Roo (because when she barks, she says, “Roo roo roo!") nearby, if not plastered to my side and making me keep an elbow up in the air so as not to smoosh her. I’ve tried working at the dining room table, a bit of a more formal setting, but Callie knows the only time humans sit at the table is when food is involved, and that means she gets treats (of the dog variety), so she’ll sit there, stare at me, whimper, bark, yip until I go insane or give up and go get the treats to feed her so she’ll stop being a pest or move. LOL. Or she’ll want to be in my lap. It’s better if I work on the couch, then she’s more settled.

Name three things you look for in a companion?

Humor, kindness, honesty.

What great advice have you given to your sons that you would share with others?

Oh boy. All my advice is great. ;) On a more serious note, I think the best advice I’ve given them is that they are capable of doing and being anything they can imagine. Also, you can’t appear at the dinner table wearing only your underwear. I think that’s pretty great advice for life in general.

Is there anywhere that you would love to visit for at least a week?

I have a list! For more than a week, too. Ireland, Scotland, Australia and New Zealand, England, and Sweden. Not necessarily in that order, either.

Besides, chocolate, is there anything else that you love to keep around to snack on?

Oh, loads that I love to snack on, but try not to keep around to snack on too often - Orange Milano Cookies by Pepperidge Farms, the bite-sized York Peppermint Patties. Cake. Brownies. I have a very sweet tooth.

Laura, is there anything else you would like to share?

I’d like to thank everyone for taking the time to read this interview and check out my books, and thank Coffee Time for such a fantastic forum. Read more romance! I’m convinced that it’s the Happily Ever After that makes the world go ‘round. :) Thank you, Cherokee, for this fun interview. I really enjoyed answering the questions. :)

Thank you for being with us today. It was fun getting to learn more about Laura. I look forward to reading all your wonderful stories.

THANK YOU! I hope you enjoy reading them as much as I enjoyed writing them.

 

 

 

 

 

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