All blogs are property of authors and copying is not permitted.

Friday, June 3, 2011

Interview of AuthorToni Noel

Today it's my pleasure to present an interview of romance author Toni Noel.

Latest Book: Temp to PermanentThe Five Little Peppers and How They Grew to her.
Buy Link:

She helped start church libraries in two rural Tennessee towns and appeared before the City Planning Commission and the San Diego City Council to urge the purchase of a branch library site in her fast-growing neighborhood. As chairman of her local planning groups library committee, the City Councilman for Toni's district invited her to turn the second shovel of dirt at the groundbreaking for the new library. It is Toni's fondest dream that one of her safe-haven-for-the-heart novels will one day be available for checkout there.

Q: What’s the first thing you did when you received word you’d sold a book?
A: I rushed downstairs to share the good news with my husband, my staunchest supporter throughout my writer's journey.

Q: What part of the book is the easiest for you to write? Why?
A: I have no problem writing openings. That scene usually starts playing in my head soon after I have the hero and heroine firmly in mind.

Q: What part of the book is the hardest for you? Why?
A: The middle is the hardest for me. Keeping the story moving when there isn't much happening except the couple spending time together so they may fall in love takes skill. That's why I like romantic suspense. Throw two strangers together with a common goal and while they're solving the mystery, there's plenty of time for them to fall in love.

Q: Who is your favorite character in your book and why?
A: I have no trouble writing male characters and Greg Lawless, my hero in Temp to Permanent, was no exception. He's bright, and doesn't wait around for Carina, his boss and the heroine, to give him instructions. His ability to see something needing doing, and do it takes backbone. She admires that trait. He frees her to do more important things without interruption. All bosses hope for employees like Greg, but he is also ethical, and not about to make moves on his boss, no matter how much he's attracted to her. He's not a braggart, and has good reason to keep the tightly held secrets about his past.

Q: Do all your heroes and all heroines look the same in your mind as you “head write”?
A: No, I have a very different image in my mind of each of my characters, and if I start writing without that image firmly in mind, my muse abandons me about fifty pages into the book.

Q: What’s your strongest point as a writer?
A: Copy editing is my strongest point. This may not be the answer you were expecting, but I'm a firm believer in polishing a manuscript until it shines. I often volunteer to read manuscripts for friends. For some unexplained reason mistakes jump off the page for me.

Tell us where to find you:
Here's a link to a five heart review of Law Breakers and Love Makers, my October, 2010 release.
My publisher’s page:
Visit . CONTEST: Email me from there and I'll enter your name in a drawing for a download of Temp to Permanent and an "I need my reading time" tee shirt. Drawing on June 30th.

Harried business owner Carina Carrington needs help on the busiest day of her career, and her secretary sick, not a good looking temporary employee whose voice even distracts her. He's good at his job and she can't help but wonder if he's good at other things, but thanks to his strict adherence to proper business ethics, Greg Lawless wants no part of workplace romances. Will Carina have to let the best help she's ever had go to assure her dreams come true?

She'd never meet her schedule without another pair of hands. Of all possible days, why did Rachael pick today to call in sick?

And what happened to her replacement? The temp agency had promised to send a secretary an hour ago. What was keeping her?

At the scrape of a leather shoe sole, Carina's concentration cracked. "There's no one at the desk out front," a husky male voice rasped.

Startled, Carina hit a wrong key. Unless his face matches that heart-stopping voice, I'll kill this salesman. She abandoned the keyboard and swiveled around in her chair. Six feet of tanned muscles crossed her carpet. No death warrant for this hunk.

Surrounded by masculine scent, Carina riveted her gaze on his business card, then glanced up. Devilish blue eyes locked with hers. She looked away to conceal her unprofessional, very unladylike reaction.

"I'm Gregory Lawless from Data Services. Pat Kilpatrick said to see Mrs. Carrington. Your receptionist--"

"Has the flu."

This perfect example of centerfold material could not possibly type.

With all the work still to turn out, I'll kill Pat, instead.

Reluctantly Carina pushed back her chair and stood to shake his hand. Good grip, self-confident. "That's why you're here, Mr. Lawless. I'm short handed today. And it's Miss Carrington."

She indicated a chair and waited for him to sit. "The agency didn't say they were sending a man." Oops. Maybe employers weren't supposed to say things like that anymore.

"Is that a problem?"

She wasn't about to acknowledge how difficult he made the simple act of speech. "Only if you can't do the job."

He folded his lanky frame into the visitor's chair she'd indicated and placed a folder on her desk. "Ms. Kilpatrick asked me to give you this copy of my resume."

A deep cleft creased his chin. How could she work with that distraction? With her weakness for cleft chins she couldn't hope to actually work around this distraction. His devastating smile belonged in a bedroom. In a bar. Anywhere but in her office ruining her concentration.

Carina sank into her own chair and opened his file to study the brief list of qualifications while steadying her heart beat. San Diego Data Services normally provided exceptional help, but Pat had explained this flu epidemic had also left her short handed. Gregory must be the last healthy soul available.

Healthy? He was that, all right. From what she could see, far healthier than a man had any need to look.

He'd indicated a willingness to work. Any warm body could man the phones in her secretary's absence. Surely she could control her body's response for the next few hours.

What about this unexpected heat? Maybe Mom was right and she was sex-deprived.

Perhaps tomorrow Pat would have a real secretary available, or not such an attractive man. Her mind pictured a prim woman. Someone wearing a skirt whose very presence wouldn't launch her pulse into orbit.

She glanced up from the resume to study Gregory. Information in the agency's file was scant, little more than name, address and social security number. He looked about her age. Why would a man approaching thirty-five resign himself to temporary work?

Carina drew a steadying breath. "Have you been with Data Services long?"

He tilted his head as if mulling over a reply. "This is my first assignment."

Great. Disgruntled by his admission, she looked away. Few skills and even less experience. Carina stole a glance. The smile hovering about his mouth prevented objective reasoning. "With a busy week ahead of me, there won't be much time for training."

He peered at the scribbled notes on her calendar and lifted one cocky eyebrow, giving him a rakish appearance that almost brought her out of her chair. "Tell you what. Let's not waste any more time. Give me a chance to help and if I don't meet your requirements, you don't owe me a cent."

Desperation evident in his voice caused her to give him a sharp look. "So you're a gambler, too."

He straightened his back against the chair, then leaned forward and gazed at her. "I've nothing to lose," he admitted with admirable honesty.

Carina thought about everything she would gain if Gregory could fill Rachael's shoes. She wouldn't need to postpone tomorrow's meeting and might still land that contract. Provided she somehow kept her mind on her business and off this man. Could she do it?

Quick decisions were her trademark. "I'll only expect you to answer the phone. On Mondays it rings constantly."

He grinned, nodding. "How shall I answer?"

Criminey. Would she need to hold his hand and walk him through the office as well? "Carrington Graphics will do."

"I'll manage. What is the nature of your business? Ms. Kilpatrick said you needed someone in a hurry and didn't take time to fill me in."

"Advertising." From the bookcase behind her desk Carina selected two brochures and unfolded them for Gregory to examine. "This is a terrible time to come up short handed. I've two important presentations scheduled, one tomorrow, and another on Friday. Rachael always handles my prepress. Without her, I'll never be ready."

After a moment, Gregory leaned across her desk to return the brochures. Fragrance, spicy-clean and fresh, teased her nostrils. Aftershave and a recent shower, a masculine scent she adored.

"I've had some experience with--"

"It's likely the phones will occupy all your time." She couldn't picture his neatly trimmed fingertips flying over a keyboard.

Imagining his hands in her hair though...

Easy, far too easy.

Cut that out. "Why don't I get you settled at the front desk, Gregory."

He followed her into the outer office. "Call me Greg."

She ignored the thump of her heart his seductive tone induced. His voice ranked among her all time favorites, too. "Greg it is."

Anything else you’d like to add?

Thanks you for allowing me to visit your blog, and I hope you enjoy reading my latest release.


Lisa Kessler said...

Great interview Toni!!!

I enjoyed the excerpt too... :)

Good luck with the new release!


Katalina Leon said...

Hi Toni, thank you for fighting for libraries!
I loved the excerpt. Best wishes to you.

Sandy said...

I loved your excerpt. What a great concept for a story.

Chris Marie Green/Christine Cody/Crystal Green said...

Go, Toni! It's amazing how many books you have out there. :)

Terry Blain said...

You got sparkle, girl! Nice interview and excerpt.

Toni Noel said...

Thanks for stopping by Lisa. I a
appreciate your input.


Toni Noel said...

Thanks, Katalina,

Libraries are my fourth love.


Toni Noel said...

Hi, Sandy,

Thanks for stopping by.

Temp To Permanent was a fun story to write, too.


Toni Noel said...

Hi, Chris,
Your list of published books has grown exponentially, too.

Thanks again for your good wishes,


Toni Noel said...

Hi, Terry,

Thanks for stopping by.

I might not have mastered the sparkle bit, but I must be doing something right.


jean hart stewart said...

Hi, Toni, glad to see you here. You go, girl....Jean

Toni Noel said...

Hi, Jean,

Thanks for stopping by. You're acquiring quite a back list, too.


Share buttons