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

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….

Oops!

I made two mistakes.

First, on Tuesday, I did a book spotlight for a book that’s already been promoted and free. I can’t do that one again until 90 days have passed.

Second, today, I almost forgot to do a blog post. With the way today has gone, I thought about not doing one at all, but here I am.

I wanted to take this time to remind you about the challenge that’s starting Monday.  5 Days to Get Out of a Creative Rut.

I’ll post information here Sunday night and invite you to the Facebook group. If you want to participate and cheer each other on, that would be the place to do it in addition to posting on Facebook and Instagram.

With that in mind, I want to show you the challenge image again. 5 Days to Get Out of a Creative RUt

5 Days to Get Out of a Creative Rut

I like participating in challenges. Do you? I decided to create a challenge to introduce us to each other before the 40 Days of Creativity course starts later this month.

So what is this challenge?

It’s 5 days to get out of a creative rut. I know we all get stuck in them once in a while. It’s time we got ourselves out of it.

There’s two things I want to share with you. The first is a video I did on Facebook live yesterday.

The second is a graphic that will be posted on Instagram Stories later today. I didn’t put the start date on it because I intend to reuse it when I run this challenge again. In this case, the challenge starts Monday, November 12. You can post on Instagram, Facebook, or even in the JNO Creativity Challenges Facebook Group.

5 Days to Get Out of a Creative RUt

Coming Up: Guest Posts

One of the things I have been wanting to do here is to have some guest posts. To that end, I have some coming up pretty soon.  I only have a few currently planned, but if you want to share a post with us, here’s how you can do that:

If you’re interested in writing a guest post for my blog, I’d love to have you. You can check out my site and decide from there. It’s at www.jennippsonline.com.
My focus is on creativity, regardless of what form that may take, whether writing, cooking, painting, or something else. I love hearing about projects people are working on, how they discovered their creativity, and/or their creative process.
Requirements:
  • Posts should be around 500-800 words.
  • Have at least one image.
  • Include a short bio.
  • Provide a link to your blog/website/social media platforms. (If you just have one of these, that’s fine.)
  • Provide a head shot you would like to go with your post (optional).
  • Promote your post anywhere you wish.
  • Check in from time-to-time on the day your post goes live to respond to comments.

What I’ll do:

  • Schedule your post for a future date.
  • Inform you of the projected date.
  • Remind you on the day it goes live.
  • Promote your post on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Pinterest.
If you decide this is something you would like to do, you can send it to me at jennippsonline@gmail.com with “Guest Post” in the subject line.

 

Boredom vs. Quiet

Let’s revisit the poll I posted a few days ago. I asked if boredom was necessary for creatives. I didn’t get a lot of response, but that’s OK. I got a couple comments — here and on other social media platforms — that helped me formulate what I want to say.

On my Facebook page, Terri M. said:

I’m not a writer or whatever, BUT I have come up with some of my greatest garden or craft ideas while sitting here doing nothing 

On the poll post, Janet said:

I think a quiet mind is needful to be creative with words. A frantic life seldom produces much. I don’t call it boredom though. Just quiet.

That is, in a nutshell, where I stand. Or sit.

As for the poll, it is still open, but results so far are evenly split between yes and no about boredom being necessary for creatives.

I have never liked being bored. It’s just not me, if that makes sense. I have always, as long as I can remember, had something with me to ensure I am never bored. That may be a pen and paper (even scrap paper in the bottom of my purse or other bag), a book to read, a sketchbook, or something to knit or crochet. I have a cousin who has commented that she has never seen me when I don’t have something to do.

That is intentional.

That is not to say I don’t have quiet time or downtime. I do. I just structure it differently. My quiet time comes in the short meditations I have started doing. It comes in the times when I am knitting or crocheting and the pattern doesn’t require a lot of attention. It comes in doodling in a sketchbook or writing practice/Morning Pages (refer to The Artist’s Way by Julia Cameron if this is a new concept to you – I highly recommend that book/study).

Everyone is different. Don’t let anyone tell you that the way you do something or what you call something is wrong. It might be different, but it’s not wrong. Especially if it works for you.

What I call downtime or quiet time may indeed be boredom to someone else. Whatever you call it, it boils down to this: We need to give ourselves time for ideas to form and incubate so we can continue our creative work.  Whatever name you give to that incubation time doesn’t really matter. It’s what you do with the results of it that count.

And who decides if it counts?

You.