Lynn, thanks so much for offering me this opportunity to be featured on your lovely, informative blog. While I do hate the marketing side to writing, I do enjoy getting to meet new folks. I think a writer grows professional when they interface with other writers, but I think we might gain even more perspective on how our writing is perceived when we get feedback from a ‘new’ reader. So, I look forward to ‘meeting’ the folks who stop by your blog and do hope they’ll take the time to leave us a comment. Now, on to answer a few questions I’ve been asked over my years as a writer that may give insight as to what makes me tick.

Why did I choose to write in the historical romance genre?

Actually, my characters chose that genre for me. The four Farrell brothers from my first novel, ‘After the War, Before the Peace’, began appearing in my imagination years and years before I had any thoughts of writing a story, let alone a book. But they persisted and they became like family. One of my male readers tells me that he believes I’ve known this family in a past life due the depth of their characters that I’ve managed to capture. Then, ‘Abby-Finding More Than Gold’, came out a suggestions that I write what I know – Irish, Catholic upbringing, Chicago, travels across the Western mountain ranges and prairies, San Francisco and the Yukon. “Hannah’ started as a series of short stories resulting from the prompt ‘a cloud of dust in the distance’ from a writer’s group that I worked with.

What is your favorite curse word?

Piffle. I use it more often these days, because my 12 year-old grandson gets a kick out that word. He always teases me about being old fashioned when I use it. As for other curse words, I try to limit them. That doesn’t me that I shy away from them when something happens to one of my characters. For instance, in my gay/sci-fi novel, ‘Regardless’, set in the 23rd century, curse words are very rarely used or acceptable in society. But, one of the main characters uses the ‘F’ word as an adjective to make a strong point when he is being kept from getting involved in a search for his lover who has been pronounced dead. His emotional state would not bring him to say, ‘those annoying directives …’.  So, I do drop an ‘F’ bomb now and then, but I think they are more effective when not overused.

What am I reading this summer?

I belong to a book club when we chose an author to review rather than a particular book. I just finished reading Robert Ludlum, a genius at working in a number of subplots to enhance his espionages. Right now I’m reading Cormac McCarthy. While his story is engaging and his characters are vivid, his lack of punctuation often makes it hard to follow who is talking. We’ll be reading Jackie Collins and Linda L. Miller this fall so I’ll be checking out their books and of course, I’ve downloaded ’50 Shades of Gray’ just to get my own take on the sensationalism I’m hearing from friends who’ve read the book.

Hope you enjoyed my take on things and now I’d like to treat you to an excerpt from my novel ‘Hannah’. You can qualify to win a free book this week and get entered to win a $50 Amazon gift certificate on July 29th just by leaving a comment here on Lynn’s blog with the answer to the following question. The pocket of Hannah’s ________ has been picked.

AUTHOR’S BIO

 

Sharon Poppen ( www.sharonpoppen.com ) has won awards from Arizona Authors Assoc. and National League of American Pen Women. Her western novels After the War, Before the Peace, Hannah and Abby-Finding More Than Gold are available at Amazon Books, most web based book sellers and from her website.  Her work has appeared in such publications as A Flasher’s Dozen, Desert Treasures, Skive, Offerings from the Oasis, A Long Story Short, Apollo Lyre and Laughter Loaf.  Her workshops on Journaling, Short Story Writing and Blogging bring rave reviews.  Sharon is a member of Lake Havasu City Writer’s Group. Her gay/sci-fi novel Regardless will be available in print and ebook the fall of 2012.

List of Published Novels

After the War, Before the Peace

Hannah

Abby-Finding More Than Gold

Regardless (due out fall 2012)

Chapter 18 – Finding Hope  –  Hannah has been rescued by Liam, the man who loves her, but it had nearly cost Liam his life. Hannah nursed him through his injuries while she waited for his brothers to come and get him.)

A rap on the hotel room door brought Hannah out of a light sleep. She opened it to find a worried Daniel.

“Come in,” she smiled, trying to allay his concern.

“Damn.” Daniel swore as he rushed over to the bed and looked down at his brother’s battered face. “What happened? Is he …”

Hannah moved to stand beside Daniel and touched his arm. “He’s alive. He’s sleeping. The doctor gave him laudanum for sleep while his body heals.

“When did this happen?”

“Two nights ago. We found the men who killed my husband.”

Daniel had been looking at his brother, but at Hannah’s words he turned and asked, “you’re not hurt?”

“They only hurt Liam, because he was helping me.”

“Where are they now?”

“One’s dead, but one got away.”

“Liam’s going to be alright?”

“When the laudanum wears off, he’s aware of what happened and his mind seems clear. But, the doctor says he has some broken ribs and multiple bruising.”

“When the deputy arrived at Aunt Emiliana’s ranch, all he said was that Liam needed either Frank or me and to hurry.”

“Thank you for coming, Daniel.” Hannah walked to the door. “When he wakes up, he’ll feel better just seeing you.”

“Where are you going?”

“I don’t know.”

“Hannah, I don’t understand.”

“Liam will explain.”

Daniel moved to stand between Hannah and the door. “My brother stayed to help you. Looks like he took a hell of a beating, for you. Stay until he wakes up. You owe him.”

“Who’s leaving?”

Liam’s voice startled them.

“Hannah,” Daniel answered.

Liam struggled to sit up, grimacing several times with the effort. “Why?”

Hannah shook her head. “Liam, lie down.”

Muttering a curse, he swung his feet to the floor.

Hannah rushed over and tried to force him back onto the bed.

Liam gripped her hand. “Don’t leave.”

“I have to. Please, don’t make this hard. Daniel’s here to take care of you.”

“Why do you have to leave?” Liam asked.

Hannah backed away. “Liam, I’m empty. It’s like the pocket of my future has been picked. All hope has been taken from me. I have no money, no clothes and worst of all no emotions, other than hate. I’m alone, stranded from decent folks. I’m no good. You’ve seen my body.” She walked into the hall, turned and whispered, “I must go.”

Daniel and Liam looked on in disbelief. Liam tried to stand, but his bruised legs buckled. Daniel helped him back into bed.

“Go get her.” Liam begged.

Alone in the room, Liam waited. He cursed his legs for their weakness to avoid thinking the unthinkable; Hannah was gone. One look at Daniel’s face when he reentered the room and Liam knew the unthinkable was upon him.

Daniel shook his head as he came over to the bed. He touched Liam’s shoulder. “I’m sorry. She’s gone.”

“No!” Liam moaned.

Daniel grabbed some laudanum from the bureau and urged Liam to take some. “You need to heal. Once you get your strength back, you can decide what to do.”

Liam looked at Daniel’s offering and then at the opened door. “Hannah,” he whispered as if in prayer. Finally, he turned to Daniel. “Give me the damn stuff.”

(to be continued)

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