Interview and Giveaway with Connie Queen

Connie is another MurderCon friend and suspense writer. While we were at MurderCon, Connie had to finish a manuscript and turn it in to the Love Inspired Suspense author search. She was on a deadline and hid out in her hotel room to write the final scenes. Thankfully, she finished, turned it in, and now, you all get to read it!! Yay!

Please welcome Connie Queen!

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Connie Queen

 

How does it feel to be a debut author?  Unbelievable. Seriously, I’m not certain it’s actually sunk in yet. They can’t call me and take back the contract, can they? Haha! I’ve heard you’re not the only one to feel this way. 

What did you do when you got “the call”? I’m not a jump up and down, squealing type of person. When I’m nervous, I tend to be slow to respond because I’m afraid I’ll say something stupid. When my editor offered me the contract, I was calm and collected, but then I began to worry I might not sound appreciative enough.  Then I started talking fast and couldn’t stop, and by the time we ended the conversation, I’m pretty certain I had totally left her confused.

After the call, I drove to my husband’s work and said the three most beautiful words, “New York Called.”

Bless him, he knew exactly what that meant.

 Where did you get your idea for your book? I’d been targeting Love Inspired for a while and paid attention to their writing advice including what were popular hooks within the line. I’ve always loved secret identity stories and wondered if I could have a US Marshal fake her death and go “rogue” undercover as a nanny. Once the idea of this highly trained officer having to pretend to be the sitter for a Texas Ranger’s kids without letting the truth slip, the story took off.

How long does it take you to write a Love Inspired Suspense novel? The time varies greatly with the quickest being 4 months and 6-8 months being more realistic. I’ve never been a fast writer but I’m getting better.

Tell us a bit about Justice Undercover?

Keeping her true identity a secret is the only way to stay alive.

Going undercover as a nanny brings presumed-dead ex-US Marshal Kylie Stone closer to catching the man who murdered the witness in her protection—and also killed Texas Ranger Luke Dryden’s sister. When someone tries to kidnap the twins in her care, Kylie must tell their uncle the truth…and convince Luke to help her. But will revealing her identity put all their lives at stake?

What is your typical day like? My husband and I just became empty nesters and moved from Texas to Nebraska for his job. We have 8 kids so it’s been an adjustment to go from constant chaos to having the house to myself during the day. We travel back to Texas frequently and Facetime with the grandkids often.  I get up early but I have a difficult time writing before noon so I get my housework and other projects done in the morning. On the weekends, we enjoy remodeling our small farmhouse.

When did you start writing? Twenty years ago. I’m kind of weird for a writer because I never enjoyed reading when I was young. I didn’t start reading as an adult until I was in my thirties and then I was hooked. Not long after, I started writing my own stories which was a totally blast because I had no idea what I was doing. This was before the days of the internet where writing advice is widely available. I began to enter writing contests and realized I had a lot to learn.

What is the hardest part about being an author? I love to think about stories. I love to talk about stories. I love to research stories. Sitting down every day to put the story on paper, not so much.

Who is your favorite author? I have a lot of favorite authors, but I’d have to say Catherine Coulter because her historicals were what got me hooked on reading. When I completed my first story, I wrote her a letter and she was kind enough to write me back and even listed the writing groups who met in my area! Most authors are extremely supportive people.

Now for the important questions:

Pepsi or Coke?  Definitely Coke. Well, make that Coke Zero. When we moved to Nebraska I found that most restaurants only carry Pepsi products. Now I carry a Coke Zero in my purse just to be safe.

Candy, cookies, or cake? Milk chocolate candy and chocolate chip cookies. I like cake, but I LOVE pies.

Coffee or Tea? Neither. It’s another thing I’m weird about.  It’s either water or Coke.

Favorite vacation?  Cruise! It doesn’t matter where, I just enjoy the ocean (even if it makes me a tad seasick) and spending time on the ship. Great place to take the kids.

Favorite TV show? I watch Perry Mason and Matlock reruns. If I could get I Love Lucy, I’d watch that too.

Favorite Movie? The Fugitive. Even though Tommy Lee Jones was trying to catch Harrison Ford, I wanted both of them to win.  If an author can make you root for both sides, that’s pretty awesome.

Any hobbies? Pets? Activities? My husband and I enjoy working on the house. We just finished making a new epoxy kitchen countertop and I really liked the way it turned out. I realize we could probably pay someone to do it almost as cheap, but where would be the fun in that? We have two super loving Great Danes!

Thank you so much for having me today, Sami!

Please check out Connie’s website http://www.conniequeenauthor.com/ for the latest information.

Thank YOU, Connie, for joining me!!

Come back in July for an interview and giveaway with Lynn Shannon!!