Q&A with Amber Daulton

Amber Daulton is the author of the romantic-suspense series Arresting Onyx and several standalone novellas. Her books are published through The Wild Rose Press and Books to Go Now, and are available in ebook, print on demand, audio, and foreign language formats.

Amber lives in North Carolina with her husband and four demanding cats.

Blurb:
Once you’re in a prison gang, you’re in it for life. That’s what Mason Harding thought until the boss accepted his resignation. After the State releases him on parole, a sexy divorcée behind the wheel of a car almost ends his life quicker than a shank. His chance encounter with Mia Eddison results in a night of passion, but her brother—his parole officer—catches them together and doesn’t approve.

Mia falls hard for the cocky ex-con, but not because of his chiseled body. She vows to break through his walls and discover his secrets, but never expects those secrets to threaten her life.

When members of an organized crime ring kidnap Mia to force Mason’s return to the gang, he goes up against an old friend to save the woman he loves. Will his sacrifice be enough or will everything fall apart in a blaze of gunfire?

Excerpt:
“Which one is your car?” She glanced around the crowded parking lot. A few streetlights pushed back the darkness and shadows. The restaurant served customers until midnight on the weekends, but no one loitered in the lot, at least from what Mia could see.

“Don’t have one at the moment.” Mason hooked his thumbs in the belt loops of his jeans. “I took the bus. It stopped a few blocks from here.”

“Would you like a ride?” She pulled the car keys from her purse. “I feel a little ridiculous we met here tonight. I just wasn’t sure if you were some kind of freak.”

His eyebrow lifted, and he closed the distance between them as a tiger would zero in on its mate. A sexy, masculine smile curled his lips. “Have you made up your mind yet?”

“I’ll let you know in the morning.” Desire trickled down her spine. Mia nodded toward the passenger side of the car for him to hop in.

He confiscated her keys instead to unlock and open the driver’s side door for her like a gentleman. Then he leaned closer and nuzzled her temple with his nose.

Not sure if he planned to seduce her in the parking lot or if he merely wanted to tease her, Mia pressed her hand to his chest and tried to think straight. “You’re the first guy I’ve gone on a date with since my divorce. I haven’t slept with anyone since Evan.”

He tunneled his fingers through her wavy, chestnut-brown hair. “I haven’t dated anyone in a long time either. We’ll take it slow or fast, whatever you want, but I promise you one thing. After I’m done with you, you won’t even remember that bastard’s name.”

Oh, God. She almost melted right then and there. “Fast. I want you, Mason.”

“Take me to your place and you can have me.”

Arresting Mason

Q&A
JNO: My blog focuses on creativity in general. What is your creative/writing process?

AD: I like to daydream first, then plot in as much detail as possible—either on paper or the computer, doesn’t matter to me. I often get new ideas in the middle of the first draft and sometimes the second draft, so the characters just take over the story for a while, and I have to find a way to reel them back in and get the story back on track. On average, I can usually write a novella (15 to 35k WC) in maybe a month or so. For a full length novel (80k plus), it usually takes three or four months to finish the first draft. I have ten books published so far, the eleventh book is currently in edits, and there are several more manuscripts collecting digital dust on my computer.

I try to write a little every day, but it can be difficult. Life happens. Trust me. Even if I can’t get to the PC to write, I’m always plotting my current or future story in my head.

I don’t have children—so no distractions there—but my cats are demanding little creatures, so I have to appease them. My husband Gregory is the cook in the household, so luckily I don’t have to worry about fixing my meals. Otherwise, I’d probably go hungry. Anyway, I usually start writing early in the morning and keep going until the afternoon, but of course I have little breaks in between.

JNO: What prompted you to write this book?

AD: Arresting Mason is a redemption story about a flawed man struggling to right his wrongs and finding love in the most unexpected of ways. I came up with the main plot—a feisty divorcée starting a HAWT relationship with a tattooed ex-con—in a little place called dreamland. I’m always the leading lady in my dreams, and I fell head-over-heels in love with a mysterious former gang member. After I awoke from that seriously mouthwatering dream, I couldn’t stop thinking about Mason, his past, and his current problems. His seductive voice kept whispering to me, urging me to write about him, so I wrote out a rough plotline and quickly finished the manuscript I was already working on. I’ve changed quite a bit in the story from what happened in the dream, but the main premise has remained the same.

I originally wrote this book for a bad boy anthology call, but I had exceeded the maximum word count and still wanted to add more scenes by the time I finished the first draft. So I forgot all about the submission call and kept revising this story until I was finally happy with it. At long last, the manuscript clocked in at 80 thousand words and sparked ideas for more books. It’s now book one in the Arresting Onyx series, a five-book series about five sexy men—brothers in blood and in life—and the stubborn women they can’t live without.

JNO: What advice would you have for anyone starting to write their first book?

AD: Writing is the easy part and it’s only half of the work. Handling rejections and bad reviews with finesse is a must, taking care of marketing and publicity demands is a handful but a requirement, and writing your next book while dealing with everything else is cause to bring out the vodka. But ‘tis the life of an author. You gotta love it, and I do with all my heart.

Make friends with other authors and readers via social media. Don’t be shy. Start a blog even if you aren’t published yet, so you can join blog tours. A tour is a great way to get a free ebook as long as you write a review and post it on your blog. The author’s readers will then come to your blog to read the review. They’ll know YOUR name, and that’s what you want—to get your name out there.

Just keep trying. I know it sounds cliché, but there’s nothing else to do. If you don’t try, you won’t succeed. Period. Keep your hopes up, take rejection letters in stride, and if a publisher or editor gives you feedback on why he/she rejected your work, listen to their feedback. They know what they’re talking about.

JNO: Also, where can people find you and your book?

AD: If you want to learn more about me, Arresting Mason, or my other books, please click on the links below. As you can tell, I hang out on several social media platforms, so feel free to message me, follow me, or send a friend request. I’d love to meet you!

Goodreads – https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/39005064-arresting-mason

Amber Daulton

Buy Links
Amazon – http://amzn.to/2ppcmEJ
Barnes and Noble – https://bit.ly/2uOj90J
iTunes – https://apple.co/2FVAQMP
Kobo – https://www.kobo.com/us/en/ebook/arresting-mason
Google Play – https://bit.ly/2Izu3cZ
The Wild Rose Press store – http://bit.ly/2FSVvBa

Buy Links for Audio
Amazon – https://amzn.to/2Nbwr03
Audible – https://adbl.co/2CV6oVU
iTunes – https://apple.co/2NHwMqA

Social Media Links
Blog – http://www.amberdaultonauthor.blogspot.com
Facebook Author Page – www.facebook.com/amber.daulton.author
Twitter – https://twitter.com/AmberDaulton1
Pinterest – http://pinterest.com/amberdaulton5/
Goodreads – www.goodreads.com/author/show/6624921.Amber_Daulton
Amazon Author Page – http://amzn.to/14JoZff
Instagram – https://www.instagram.com/amberdaultonauthor/
Book Bub – https://www.bookbub.com/profile/amber-daulton
Book Gorilla – https://www.bookgorilla.com/author/B00ALQITWY/amber-daulton/kcc
Smashwords – https://www.smashwords.com/profile/view/amberdaulton
LinkedIn – www.linkedin.com/pub/amber-daulton/87/538/368 
Google+ – https://plus.google.com/u/0/+AmberDaulton
The Wild Rose Press – https://catalog.thewildrosepress.com/2362_amber-daulton

You Made It!

Welcome to day 5 of 5 Days to Get Out of a Creative Rut!

You made it! Today is the last day.

How did your walk go yesterday? I need for you to think about it for a minute. What did you see that grabbed your attention? Did you take a picture of it?

I hope so.

Take that picture and look at it. I mean, really look at it. Why did you notice it? What is it?

Take that item and any/all associations in has for you and create something around it.

Cook.
Paint.
Write.
Draw.
Sculpt.
Sing.
Compose.
Play your instrument.

Whatever it is that you do that makes you you, do that.

Between your Idea Pocket, your notebook/journal, and your walking with intention (paying attention, looking for inspiration), you have three important tools to help you get out of any creative rut you find yourself in.

If you participated in the challenge and used the hashtag #nocreativerut on Facebook or Instagram, you are entered in a drawing to win a Kindle copy of 80 Creativity Tips or a scholarship to 40 Days of Creativity.

Happy creating!

5 Days to Get Out of a Creative RUt

Walk….

Welcome to day 4.

The only thing I want you to do today is to go for a walk.

Take a camera, take your phone. It doesn’t matter which, just so long as you have something that you can take a picture with.

I want you to pay attention to the things around you. What catches your eye? What insists you pay attention to it? Take a picture of it. If there’s more than one, take a picture of them.

In The Artist’s Way and The Right to Write, Julia Cameron talks about going on walks often. She says a creative’s work is called a body of work for a reason. She encourages us to get out and walk.

So I would like for you to do that today.

You’re Halfway There

Today is Day 3 of 5 Days to Get Out of a Creative Rut. You’ve been introduced to the concept of the Idea Pocket. You’ve collected some items to include in it.

Now it’s time to use it.

Today, you need a pen and notebook and your Idea Pocket. Sit down, open your notebook, and take a breath. Pick up your Idea Pocket and pull something out.

Don’t pick and choose. Pull out the first thing you touch.

What is it?

Today, I would like for you to journal about it. Write a poem, an essay, a freewrite that might turn out to be nothing (a note about that in a minute). Sketch, color, scribble.

It doesn’t matter what you do.

Just do something.

Do it for 10-15 minutes.

At a later point, you might decide to cook something based on what you take out of your Idea Pocket. You might want to get out some watercolors and paint. Or you might decide to go for longer than 15 minutes. For now, journal, whether that takes the form of sketching, coloring, scribbling, or writing.

Remember what I said about “even if it turns out to be nothing”?

The important thing here is that you do this as a practice. As a way of learning to get in touch with your creativity. THAT is the purpose. That is the “thing” it is “supposed to be.”

It is what it is. If it helps you in any way, so much the better.

After you’re finished, either put your item back in your Idea Pocket or (preferred) put something new in and discard the thing you just used. Unless it’s some kind of memento that you want to keep.

Tomorrow we’ll go a little deeper.

5 Days to Get Out of a Creative RUt

Hooray! You Got Started!

Welcome to Day 2 of 5 Days to Get Out of a Creative Rut!

Yesterday, you made your Idea Pocket. Today, you’re going to fill it.

Unless you’ve used a box or a big envelop, you want to keep your items small. Some suggestions of things to include in your Idea Pocket are:

  • Rocks.
  • Beads.
  • Paperclips.
  • Keys.
  • Coins.
  • Ticket stubs.
  • Tea bag tags.
  • Price tags.
  • Pictures.
  • Shells.

The list could go on, but you get the idea.

Ha. Idea. Idea Pocket. That wasn’t intentional, but after I noticed it, I wasn’t going to take it out.

I suggest that you put at least 10 items in your Idea Pocket. Share what you put in yours with us on Facebook or Instagram. Don’t forget the hashtag #nocreativerut.

Join the Facebook group too!

5 Days to Get Out of a Creative RUt

GO!

Welcome to day 1 of 5 Days to Get Out of a Creative Rut!

Today, I ask that you make an Idea Pocket. In case you missed the description of what an Idea Pocket is, you can read it here.

Now, how do you make an Idea Pocket? It’s pretty easy.

For the simplest version, take a #10 standard business envelop and seal it. Cutting the short end, cut about 1/3 of it off. If you want to, cut a notch in it so you can open it easier.

On the outside, write a little nonsense poem or decorate it in some way that you like and will remind you that this is a tool you can use to tap into your creativity. It’s part of your creative toolbox.

This is a poem I’ve put on the outside of any that I make:

My Idea Pocket

I want to write.
I want to draw.

Try though I might,
I can’t think of anything at all!

I reach my hand in here
And find something very near.

I’ll put it back or put in something new
So I can use it another time too.

It serves to describe what an Idea Pocket is, in case you forget, and it tells you how you can use it.

You can find a picture of mine on my primary Instagram sometime later today. Remember to post pictures of your Idea Pocket on Facebook or Instagram using the tag #nocreativerut. And join the conversation in the Facebook group.

5 Days to Get Out of a Creative RUt

Get Set….

ecrireYesterday, I told you some things you’ll need for the creativity challenge – 5 Days to Get Out of a Creative Rut.

Today, I’m going to tell you a little bit about one of the key tools you’ll put together tomorrow.

The Idea Pocket.

The purpose of The Idea Pocket is to promote creativity.  Through it, you’ll realize that ideas are truly everywhere and you can get ideas from the world around you, You’ll figure out how to use these ideas whether in writing, drawing, painting, cooking, or in any other creative endeavor.

Yes. I believe cooking is a creative outlet.

At any rate, that’s the key thing you need to know for tomorrow. You can join the Facebook group if you want, too.

Are you ready?

On your mark….

Get set….