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Hello Debby Grahl. Welcome to Coffee Time Romance and More. We are so excited you are here to talk to us today. We'd like to ask a few questions so that your readers and others can get to know you better. 

I’d like to thank Coffeetime  Romance & More for having me today.

Your latest release is Rue Toulouse. Would you like to tell us a bit about it ?

Rue Toulouse is a contemporary romance set in New Orleans. I came up with the idea for the book when my husband, David, and I were visiting the city. While I sat on the balcony of our hotel on Rue Toulouse drinking a glass of wine and eating Voodoo chips, Caterine and Remi came to life in my mind. Rue Toulouse is a tale of sex, danger and intrigue down in the Big Easy. After Caterine Doucette inherits the family fashion business, Ma Cherie, an attempt is made on her life. Ex-cop Remi Michaud, is hired to protect Caterine while discovering which of her traitorous relatives want her dead.

Your first release, a paranormal romance titled The Silver Crescent, won The Paranormal Romance Guild’s Reviewers Choice Award, in the romance / general category, for 2014. Can you share some information on this achievement?

The Silver Crescent was reviewed by The Paranormal Guild and received 5 stars. It was then nominated for the Reviewers Choice Award which is voted on by fans of the book. I was thrilled to find there were so many who enjoyed the book enough to vote for me.

What a great achievement. You must be so proud of yourself. You have Retinitis Pigmentosa. Can you tell us how this has impacted you and your writing?

RP is a disease of the retina which causes gradual vision loss. I lost the ability to read in my early twenties, but even when I had sight, seeing the printed word was always difficult for me. Reading a book would take me twice as long as  a person with normal sight. I became frustrated with this and  began to make up my own stories. It wasn’t until the development of computers and wonderful screen reading software that I was able to put my stories into words. Everything I type is read back to me aloud. This enables me to do my research, use the online dictionary, post on Google Plus and Facebook. This has truly opened a new window of opportunity for me.

What an inspiration you are, to keep going achieving your dreams despite having a road block in your way. What is next in your writing; what are you working on? 

Actually I have three projects. The first, a completed manuscript titled His Magic Touch, is a paranormal romance again set in New Orleans. Island Heat, Mountain Heat and Southern Heat are contemporary romances which are works in progress. Decorated To Death, is my first book which is a mystery cozy. I plan on giving it a good polish and resubmitting it for publication. 

Wow you are one busy lady. Where can your readers find you?

I can be found on my website, www.debbygrahl.com, Facebook at debbygrahlauthor,

Twitter, Amazon, including Kindle, Barnes & Noble, including Nook, Goodreads, Kobo, I tunes.

Ha- ha you're a social network queen! What is something about you that people would be surprised to know?

LOL! I’m not sure about this one, but here goes. I like to skinny dip in our pool. It’s very private and secluded. Now I know lots of people probably do this, but I don’t think my friends and family would think I was one of them.

Oh my I'm not sure I would admit to that one Lol. So tell us what inspires your writing?

Inspiration can come from a number of places. For instance, I got the idea for my paranormal romance, The Silver Crescent, from an experience friends of mine had on a tour of historic homes. One couple had actually made their patio out of old tombstones. This created all kinds of creepy ideas in my mind.

Cities I love to visit are always inspiring, such as New Orleans, my setting for Rue Toulouse. I love reading historical romances. I plan on writing a time travel story set during regency England, and being a huge Downton Abbey fan, I’ve decided to set Destined to Die, a work in progress, in the nineteen- twenties.

Ghosts and people with magical powers are always fun to write about. Let’s not forget the Old West and hunky cowboys. Turquoise water and an expanse of golden beach can conjure up all kinds of possibilities.   

People are fascinating to watch and a great source for developing characters. In fact, in my first book, a mystery cozy, the murdered victim was actually a truly hateful person I had the misfortune to know.

For me the ability to create stories and allow others to escape into the fantasy world I’ve spun is a wonderful gift I’ll always cherish.

Sounds like you could make a character out of any inspirations and in any genres. Do you read as much as you write?

Yes, I love to listen to books. Thanks to the National Library for the Blind, I have thousands of digital books available to me. I enjoy mysteries, time travel, and all kinds of romance. I go to bed listening to a book. One amusing thing is that will I fall asleep with the earbuds still in my ear and wake up wondering who the people are who are talking in my bedroom.    

At least the people talking are your books and not inside your head. LOL. So besides reading what do you do with your free time?

I’m fortunate to live only fifteen minutes from the ocean, so David and I like to take walks on the beach. We also have a tandem bike, so we go for long rides. We also enjoy traveling. Other than seeing the US, I love England. We’ve been there three times and never tire of the quaint country villages. I’m a country music, blues and oldies fan. Play some good old rock ‘n’ roll and I’m out on the floor boogying.

Boogying, You go girl! What do you hope readers take with them, after reading one of your stories?

I like my readers to escape for a while into a world of romance and intrigue. In my books I like to provide information about something perhaps the reader knew nothing about. In The Silver Crescent, we learn about Colorado silver mining in the nineteenth century. It plays a significant role in the story. In Rue Toulouse, I take the reader for a tour around New Orleans and introduce them to the sights and sounds of this wonderful city.

As a reader that's what I love is an escape from daily life. Would you tell us what is a typical writing day for you?

I write best early in the morning. I like it when the house is quiet, and there are no distractions. If the words are flowing, I can write for hours. I’m not one who can sit down in the middle of the day and begin to write.

Sounds like you are very dedicated as long as life keeps quiet, that's awesome. Ok curios minds want to know what is the strangest thing a fan has said or done to get your attention?

As readers of romance, we’ve all experienced the eager anticipation of actually meeting one of our favorite authors. Some of us have stood in line for hours just to hear them speak.

I recently had an incident that made all the hours of writing, all the rejection letters, and all the rewrites worth every minute. I had a book signing where there were at least fifty people. This in itself thrilled me.  As people began to line up in front of my table for me to sign my books, an excited reader stopped and told me how much she loved my books and couldn’t wait for my next one. I can’t express the emotion I felt. I’m a newly-published author and here was this person acting as excited to meet me as I do when I go to see one of my favorite authors. Not only did I feel immense pleasure knowing something I’ve written has given someone such enjoyment, but they also inspired me to continue writing.

I  think that's great. I bet it made you feel all your hard work is paying off.  I love sweets and deserts all the time what are your favorite foods?

I like gumbo, good Southern fried chicken, Italian, Mexican, and Chinese food, but I’d have to say my favorite is a nice thick grilled steak. Also fresh fruit and crisp vegetables, and my addiction, chocolate.

Ooh yes chocolate is a must; did you know it is its own food group? LOL just kidding but it should be! As we finish up do you have any final words or advice?

I have a few suggestions for new writers. First, see if there’s a writers’ group near you and join them. Other writers can be full of helpful advice. Also there are a number of online groups that you can find that write in your genre. I also highly suggest that you take online writing classes. When I wrote my first book, a murder mystery titled Decorated To Death, which hasn’t been released, I was extremely naïve when it came to what a publisher expects. I thought you just wrote the book, submitted it and waited to hear back. I found out quickly how wrong I was. There are a number of what I refer to as no-noes in the writing world. I had one editor tell me that I had a good book, if I could only write it. In red, she pointed out all my beginner writer’s mistakes. And trust me, there was a lot of red on the page. That’s when I started taking online classes, and my writing improved after the first class. A number of groups offer these classes, and they’re reasonably priced. Entering contests is another way to get helpful advice on your work. Many writers’ groups conduct annual writing contests. Lastly, my advice would be that if you have a story in you, write it. Even if your book never makes some top seller list, it’s still your story and you wrote it.

Great Advice. Debby  thank you so much for being with us today. I wish you luck, success, and many sales in your future.

 

 

 

 

 

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