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Author Interview seventh question


And the last, best, and most visual question for Author, Sheryl Hames Torres: Referring to either your most recent book release, or your current WIP, if you were to cast your characters, what actors would portray them? Tell us about the character, and why the actor/actress fits.

ROFL…my poor writers’ group members will tell you that I drive them nuts, not only casting my own characters, but almost forcing them to cast their stories as well. When I’m writing a story, I may cast someone by looks alone, or perhaps I’ll see him/her in a role that screamed my own. Often though, by the time you finish your story, that casted actor may be too old, may be starring in something else where you say, “What was I thinking??” I tend to cast because of movements or attitude. It always helps to SEE your character in motion, catch tics, mannerisms, even the speech patterns. That does not, however, mean if they have a southern accent, you can’t force them to use an Irish one. Also, sometimes I cast people from photos that fit, even though I may not have any idea who they are. I give you the cast of my latest release, Kate’s House.

Anson Mount as Ian Stuart(WITH the beard, his dimples drive me nuts. LOL)

Hair model as Kate

Skyler Samuels as Crysta

Colin Ford as Liam

Maggie Elizabeth Jones as Livvy

Jasika Nicole as Reggie

Blake Michael as Rocky Lando

Maria Cesaria Cordel Encantado as Jannette

Miss Cicely Tyson as Nannette

Desert Breeze Publishing, Inc.'s photo.Desert Breeze Publishing, Inc.'s photo.
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Announcing New Release and review


KatesHouseCoverArt72dpi Now available from Desert Breeze Publishing and Amazon.com, KATE’S HOUSE

When Katherine learns of her husband’s long time infidelity and other lies he’s told her over the years, she’s not sure which upsets her more: his duplicity or that she’s completely ignored the signs. Using his subterfuge against him, she acquires a quickie divorce, sole custody of their three children, and enough money to start a new life.

Finding an unusual and seemingly magical Queen Anne in the middle of a farm is the answer to her prayers–a place to teach her children that it’s okay to play and have fun–to be kids. She doesn’t count on falling love with the handyman who comes with the place–or dealing with his secrets–secrets that could destroy them all and their newfound happiness.

Excerpt~~

The heat hit them like a thick, wet blanket taken from the dryer way too soon. It made breathing a struggle.

Reggie put two fingers in her mouth and sent a piercing whistle into the gloom. “Hey, Ian, we’re here!” she bellowed.

There was no sound or movement for several seconds until, like a scene from a bad B movie, he appeared from behind the carriage house, moving in slow motion, pushing the fog out of his way. The sun chose that second to make a brief appearance long enough to shine down on his perfectly toned bare chest and arms as he quickly shrugged a gray tee shirt over it all.

Come on, seriously? No one really looks like that.

Katherine dropped her gaze to her feet, pretending to count the wild violets on the ground until she got the urge to giggle under strict control. A pair of bare feet peeking out from the hems of well worn jeans joined her feet in her vision of violets, and she looked up with a jerk directly into soft gray eyes, rimmed in charcoal lashes. His dark hair, thick and wavy, fell to his shoulders and was pushed straight back away from his face. Obvious from the fingers marks, he’d been out in the rain most of the day and the dampness fueled the waves already there. A heavy stubble darkened his chiseled chin, thick and well kept. The giggle bubbled up again when he spoke.

“Hello, I’m Ian Stuart.”

Of course you are.

The hint of an Irish accent crept from under his strict effort to control it. It was endearing and put her at ease. If he could be this beautiful and still feel self-conscious about something as innocuous as a slight Irish brogue, she was just fine.

She offered her hand. “It’s so nice to meet you, Mr. Stuart. I’m Katherine Jensen, and these are my children, Crysta, Willie, and Livvy.”

His eyes lingered on each child, and Katherine got the feeling he was memorizing their faces. When none of them squirmed under his perusal, he allowed a slight smile. “A fine lot you have here. I’d wager none of you fear the dark or imagine monsters under the bed.”

While Crysta and Willie’s eyebrows rose, Livvy took it in stride. “No, there’s nothing scary under my bed. Me and my animals have camp outs under there.”

He bent at his waist till he was eye-to-eye with her, no mean feat since he was well over six feet tall. “Then you shall be captain, my fine lass. Only the most fearless can be in charge.”

“Captain?” Willie scoffed. “She’s just a girl. And a baby one at that.”

“Age makes no difference. It’s strength that matters, Bodyguard.”

Her son’s eyes widened slightly. They stared at each other, some piece of information passing silently between them.

Crysta smiled. “And who am I to be, Mr. Stuart?”

“You are the balance,” Ian answered without hesitation.

So he had not only been listening to them the day they visited, he’d listened well. How else could he have sized up her children so fast?

“Well, I’m just the mama,” Katherine offered with a shaky smile and rushed on before he could bestow a title on her.

 

Review~~

Kate’s House offers a mixture of pain, humor, and romance as well as the supernatural, which adds dimension to this delightful novel. It is proof that redemption is possible even in the most trying situations and that love can be found when least expected.”  ~~Nancy C. LepriReadertoReader.com

Update and Review for ILLUSIONS from Desert Breeze Publishing now available at Amazon.com


IllusionsCoverArt72dpiNow up for voting in Cover Wars at http://authorshout.com/cover-wars/  ~~ Please register and vote daily October 11-17!

Seventeen years ago, Lily had the perfect life — loving parents and grandparents, a best friend and a boy she thought loved her. An explosion and a disastrous decision blew it all away.

She endures her estranged husband’s brutality in order to protect her six children and paraplegic grandmother, hiding her bruises and terror as best she can. Her family will be safe, even if it means shrinking their world into a very small space.

Alex has been trying to figure Lily out since he returned to town. His teaching job has not only allowed him to get to know her kids as he floats from school to school teaching them music, it’s given him a reason to reconnect with Lily.

However, the new persona he created is all she sees. In her eyes, the boy he was has ceased to exist. Will Alex’s love save or destroy her family?

Excerpt~~

“I’m sorry, Lily.”

She searched his face, and he didn’t buckle under her scrutiny. There was something about those eyes, something that grabbed her and wouldn’t let go. Something that made her feel safe and weak all at once.

“For what exactly? For my marrying the wrong man or for having the power to make me tell you things I refuse to tell anyone else?”

“Both, I guess.”

“You are a puzzle, Alex Anderson.”

“Not at all. My agenda is clear.”

She shivered. Her breath came in gasps as he leaned closer to her, and her heart beat out of control.

“Aren’t you going to ask me what that agenda is?”

“I’m not sure I want to know,” she whispered.

He surprised her by sitting up straight and offering her a wide smile. “You make very good tea.”

“You think I’m a coward?” She stared at her hands. There were tears in her voice, and she felt ashamed.

“Oh, no, Lily.” He put his glass down on the island, stood, and moved to stand in front of her. Sliding his hands along the side of her face, she felt his warmth flowing into her. Putting pressure on her chin with the pads of his thumbs, he raised her eyes to his. “You’re the bravest woman I’ve ever known.”

She scoffed. “You don’t have a clue what kind of woman I am.”

“You’re wrong.” The sudden pain in his eyes shocked her to her very core, and the need to comfort him was jarring. His voice when he continued was gentle, quiet, and intense. “I know you. I always have.”

With those words, he placed a gentle kiss on her forehead, soft, non-threatening, comforting and strengthening. Her eyes followed him as he picked up his glass, walked to the sink, rinsed it out, then headed to the door. As he opened the door, he slipped the lock on the doorknob.

“Get some rest. I’ll see you Monday.” With that, he closed the door behind him.

Lily remained frozen in her chair despite a devastating urge to run after him and beg him to stay. What was it about this man that made her feel so secure? By all rights and purposes, she’d only really met him this afternoon. He was a virtual stranger.

And why didn’t she send him away? After all, once he found out all the truths in her life, he’d leave anyway.

 

Review~~

Five our of Five Stars: A gut-wrenching, yet delightful read!

By Nancy C. Lepri on July 21, 2015

Format: Kindle Edition

Lily Cabot is raising six lovable, well-behaved children while keeping Peter, her abusive ex at bay. She fearful of him, and her kids hold him in contempt, also, wanting no part of him.

Living with her wheelchair-bound grandmother and caring for the needs of seven, not to mention herself, Lily is selfless and strong, determined to create a happy family environment.

The young man she once loved, Zandie Anderson is but a memory, though she still has a soft spot for him in her heart. If only, she thinks…but if only never happened, so she deals with the cards she’s been dealt. Not only deals with them, but does an excellent job, too. She encounters many stumbling blocks, though they do not deter her determination for a better life for her young ones.

Zandie, now going by Alex, teaches music for the local school system. His appearance is very different from the Zandie Lily once adored. He offers lessons to her children–drawn to the rowdy, but lovable brood–though more so to the girl he still loves. Attracted to him, Lily perceives something familiar in him, but cannot discern what, for he is not recognizable from the boy she had known. However, a relationship is impossible. She has her young ones and grandmother to care for, and her worry of reprisals from Peter keeps her from enjoying a life of her own.

Can Lily ever escape the bonds that bind her and find the true love she deserves, or will she continue to live in fear?

Ms. Hames Torres pens her novel with flair and wit. Though tackling the difficult subject of domestic violence, her protagonist proves to be a tough, independent woman who is doing an extraordinary job raising her six precocious kids while living with her grandmother, a feisty individual in her own right. Humor mixed with the issue of brutality offers a light-hearted, delightful read plus the anticipation of more in this same tone from this author.

Everyone should have a family reunion…


I’m a homebody. I don’t really travel. I like to go on day trips. Of course with my husband being on call with his job 24/365, day trips are about all we get…so, I like them. LOL

But staying home has a not-so-great-side. Stay at home and you’re not going to see anyone. You get so complacent that you don’t even realize you’re missing the people you don’t see. You know they’re missing from your life. They do cross your mind and you have nostalgic pangs of I-wonder-what-they’re-doing- right-about-now, and you miss them.

These days, we get so busy we don’t realize that with each day time is being eaten away by…well, passing time. Our jobs, daily chores and errands, stuffed full schedules get in our way, take up every minute in our days from dawn to night and we fail to notice another day has passed. Gone. Never to get back. Even when driving distance between close family members and friends is not so far away as to cost massive time and money, it’s hard to find time to do more than make do with the weekly phone call, or getting together on holidays when we can manage it. Then we realize how many of our loved ones we lose in a year. Five. Ten years. We think, how the hell did that much time pass? You find yourself remembering childhood memories of them because that’s all you’ve given yourself.

That’s just not right.

Last weekend, my mother’s family had a small family reunion. In the last few short years, she’s lost her brother and 2 sister-in-laws and a granddaughter. Her two remaining brothers, her niece and all their kids and grandkids are all the family she has left that she didn’t create herself…and she’s done a very good job of creating a massive family, six kids, sixteen grandkids, more than thirteen great grand children and I think 2 great great grandchildren. She and one of her brothers decided enough was enough and it was time for all of us to get together. Did we ALL make it to the reunion? Of course not. My sister’s daughter lives outside Seattle, one of my brothers lives in Virginia and his children and grandchildren live in North Carolina, and there were other grandchildren who couldn’t make it. Logistics of trying to get everyone off work and across state lines had to have been a nightmare, and yet, her brother managed to get two of his three daughters, and his one son to get time off and travel from Pensicola, Florida to Winder, Georgia. Seriously? We can bearly manage to get my husband, my kids and me all off and ready to go for out little day trips.

While it’s been years, and sorrowfully decades for some, since I’ve seen most of them, while I was looking at my “little” cousins’ children and thinking…why aren’t your mama’s still that size?…time fell away and everything was perfect. One of my cousins smiled and said, “Do you know who I am?” and I smiled back and said, “Do you know who *I* am?” Of course, we did, but that’s still pitiful, isn’t it?

And yet, seeing my mother’s smile as she slipped her arms around her “little” brothers’ waists, seeing this family that’s grown so large over the years, I drove home with a sense of reconnection and happiness, swearing that I wouldn’t get so swallowed up in the everyday goings on that I’d not talk to my sisters, my mother, my brothers only once a week. And yet, the week is over and we’ve all been exactly that, swallowed up in the everyday. My book, ILLUSIONS, was released on June first, and I’ve spent the week doing promotion, cleaning the house that was sorely ignored while I was writing and editing, and getting my daughter back and forth to her college classes, throwing away old copies of manuscripts now done and out into the world. I don’t see any light ahead and classes start back around the first of August. While we can call each other on the phone, trying to find little holes in our schedules to connect is sometimes impossible. Luckily, there is FB and email.

Sad.

Fourth of July cometh…

Thank God.

 

 


 

Now available from Desert Breeze Publishing.com

IllusionsCoverArt72dpi

Seventeen years ago, Lily had the perfect life–loving parents and grandparents, a best friend and a boy she thought loved her. An explosion and a disastrous decision blew it all away

She endures her estranged husband’s brutality in order to protect her six children and paraplegic grandmother, hiding her bruises and terror as best she can. her family will be safe, even if it means shrinking their world into a very small space.

Alex has been trying to figure Lily out since he returned to town. His teaching job has not only allowed him to get to know her kids as he floats from school to school teaching music, it’s given him a reason to reconnect with Lily.

However, the new persona he created is all she sees. In her eyes the boy he was has ceased to exist. Will Alex’s love save her and her family, or will they all be destroyed?

To blog today….or NOT…today’s grumble…


February 18…sixteen days since my last blog. I’m getting better. LOL Since my last post, I had a medium case of the flu, survived…gathered all the receipts and info for taxes, took them to our tax lady, survived…with a good refund coming(new fridge in a few days…can you feel my excitement?)…edited my first three chapters of my newest manuscript, and composed my query. I got everything ready to go only to discover the targeted publisher has changed the submission guidelines..again…third time in the last 2 months…and now they want the entire manuscript.

So, I have not met my GrapeMo goals to date. I have done a lot of punting these two weeks. But the sun is shining today, my husband was off for the holiday, my kids are home from classes and all is right with the world. Oh yeah, and chapter 4 is open and waiting. New GrapeMo goal..finish edits/rewrites of the last 15 chapters before the end of the month…and if not by the end of the month, before the 10th of March when I head to Charleston with the kids to play on the beach with one of my bestest friends.

So, all is good.

Really.

Okay, most things are okay. I have deliberated over this issue and wondered if I should  blog about it or keep it to myself. Those of you who know me, understand why I’m doing so now. Those of you who don’t…well, I have a big mouth and I’m opinionated and well…here we are.

Do you have pet peeves that are reasonably nuts to everyone else, but when you come across an instance, it drives you nuts? Most writers I’ve spoken to over the years have mentioned one of their greatest dreams as authors would be to see their book made into a movie. I admit, I see words. I read, I see the scene played out in front of me. I write with a full cast and write the scenes as I see them. So, that said, sometimes I don’t always agree with the casting of a book I’ve read made into a movie, but that I can put up with. They didn’t call me for my opinion, after all, though I would have willingly given it to them for free. 

For instance, one of my favorite books is Nora Roberts’ Carnal Innocence. While Gabrielle Anwar is a darling actress, thin, waif-like which fits the physical description of Caroline, anyone who watches her weekly in Burn Notice understands completely why they had to change the personality of the character from a broken-spirited, sickly musician into a strong, gun-toting character.

 All readers know that there’s no way to take every scene of every beloved book and include them in a script. While there are those of us who are willing to sit for 4 hours in a theater if it means our favorite books end up unmolested, it’s not fiscally feasible, so my daughter just had to get over the scriptwriters leaving out Snape’s potions challenge in The Scorcer’s Stone.  The Outsiders couldn’t do the book justice since it was basically a Stars of the Day Fest. Interview With a Vampire, much the same. Tom Cruise as Lestat??? Please.

But what about when they take a single book of a series, ignore the rest of the series, and make a movie that  needs a disclaimer that reads: only the names remain the same?

So, okay, from here on in, spoiler alert. If you have read Beautiful Creatures and plan to see the movie, or if you’ve not read it and plan to see it, it’s been nice visiting with you. We’ll talk again in a few days…I hope. But right now, I’m going to ask you not to read any further because I’m going to give details that bug me, and I don’t want to hurt ticket sales. Kami Garcia and Margaret Stohl have created a gorgeous series, rich and absorbing. It deserves to be read. And for those who haven’t read the series, you will enjoy the movie.

Now, since everyone has gone that needs to leave… For those of you who read the series and are planning to see the movie, be prepared. Obviously, neither the scriptwriter nor the director read anything beyond the first book in the series. Now we know why in all the promotion interviews, the actors state they weren’t allowed to read the rest of the series. While the movie is entertaining for what they ended up with, if you read the series, you’re going to find yourself sitting gape-mouthed asking…what the heck? The performances are brilliant, exaggerated southern accents aside. They needed comic relief, I guess. The casting of the main characters are fairly spot on. But the story only skims any resemblance of the story, and a lot of what was omitted was the richness of details…Lena driving an old yellow car instead of Uncle Macon’s hearse, omitting House and Kitchen and Boo Radley, for instance.

If this were the ONLY book, we could live with that, because, as I’ve said, the movie was entertaining if you weren’t looking for things that were crucial to ever making the other four books into films. Leaving out the way Ethan and Lena communicate by a sort of telepathy can easily be brought into the next movie, as can the omission of the Aunts, House, Kitchen and the dog. However, I can’t see how they will handle the problems they created by combining the characters of Amma, Ethan’s housekeeper and beloved mother figure, and Dr. Marion Ashcroft, Ethan’s late mother’s college friend who serves as  not only the town’s library, but Keeper of Caster Library. Had the scriptwriter read the rest of the series, he would have realized that by combining these two characters, he were writing themselves into a corner, cheating the authors, the  fans of the series, and the characters themselves. Amma and Marion are two separate and distinct characters, crucial to the ending that Garcia and Stohl created. Amma’s charms and crossword puzzles are a huge part of who she is, and meshing her with Marion’s job as keeper will likely make it necessary to omit a good portion of the third book, which will leave the screenwriter the daunting task of somehow trying to introduce a huge chunk of information vital to that ending.

So my question is this, when a book is a part of an ongoing series that tells a story that happens in a short span of time, why would a screenwriter not read the entire bit of the source material before beginning to pen the script?  Movies Part One and Part Two, etc, are big, and have been since Friday the 13th part one…what are they on now? Friday the 13th part 215? Harry Potter, Twilight, LOR, etc have been popular for a reason. What was omitted,  was done so without destroying the story. Too bad, the screenwriter of the Beautiful Creatures series didn’t realize that.

Now, I’m done grumbling. I donated my $15.oo to the cause, and I walk away with my disappointment, thanking the powers that be, that my daughter has the books and will allow me to read them whenever I wish.

Until next time, enjoy your February days. Spring’s coming.

Be well.