Charlene Raddon is another traditionally-published author who is going e-book. Char lives in Utah and is known for her wonderful western historical romances. She and Brit met when they both wrote for Zebra. Brit was eager to interview Char about her new e-release slated for this Saturday, and also get some background on this amazing lady.
Q: Char, on July 21 (this Saturday), the e-book edition of your historical romance Forever Mine will be released. Can you tell us a bit about the setting, characters and plot of this book?
A: Sure. To escape a dangerous uncle intent on marrying her to a much older man for financial gain, Ariah Scott secretly agrees to wed a lighthouse keeper on the Oregon Coast. But she didn’t count on falling in love with her intended’s uncle before ever meeting the man she’s to marry. Miserably wed to a shrew of a woman who tricked him into marrying her, then locked her bedroom door to him, Bartholomew Noon never dreamed a creature as lovely, innocent and vivacious as Ariah even existed. The attraction between Bartholomew and Ariah is instantaneous, life altering, and of course, forbidden. I think of Forever Mine as my Ethan Frome with a happy ending story.
Q: You are known for your western historical romance novels. What is it about that era and setting in particular that draws you?
A. Forever Mine is Americana, rather than western, but it’s proven to be my most popular book. Cape Meares Lighthouse sits on the tip of a cape near Tillamook, Oregon. Writer friends and I have been going to a little village near there for years. The homes mostly belong to Portlanders who only show up on weekends. There are no shops, no schools, not even a gas station, and little to do but walk the beach. But we love it there. Our days are spent writing and watching the ocean. On one particular visit to the lighthouse when it was first opened to tourists, I spotted a wedding photo of a light keeper and his bride who were married and lived there. The forlorn looks on their faces, especially hers, started me thinking about what it must have been like for a new bride to live in such an isolated spot. At that time it took most of a day to reach the nearest village, Tillamook, 8-9 miles inland. Soon, Forever Mine was born.
Q. When and why did you begin writing?
A: It was in 1980 when I awoke from a vivid dream that inspired me to drag out my portable typewriter and start writing. I had no idea what I was doing, or how to write a novel. Nine years passed while I learned my craft and wrote that book, a time travel which I call Time Weaver. At the time, no one was buying time travels so I boxed it up and put it away. I’ve only recently dragged it out and begun reworking it. It’s a great story and I’m truly enjoying delving into it again.
Q: Who are your favorite authors?
A: Oh, I have so many it would take pages to list them all. A. B. Guthrie, Larry McMurtry, Zane Grey, Penelope Williamson, Maggie Osborn, Nora Roberts, Elizabeth Lowell, Catherine Anderson, Susan Elizabeth Phillips, Susan Wiggs and Kristin Hannah come first to mind.
Q: Do you ever experience writer’s block? If so, how do you tackle it?
A: I know writers who don’t even believe writers’ block exists. I assume they’ve never experienced it. When I’m having difficulty while in the middle of a scene, I often turn to digital scrapbooking for a quick change of pace that seems to help get the creative juices flowing. It’s a healthier choice than going to get something to eat or simply giving up for the day.
Q: What are your other hobbies and interests?
A: Hobbies are a problem of mine because I have so many of them. Genealogy, scrapbooking, needlepoint, crocheting, gardening and dying eggs in the Ukrainian style are my favorites. I also love to travel.
Q: Please give us a sneak preview of your next e-book (title, setting, anything else)
A: At present, I’m preparing Tender Touch to be my next e-book. Tender Touch was the second book I completed after Time Weaver. It won the historical division of the 1990 Colorado Gold Writing Contest, then went on to become a Golden Heart finalist the following year. That won me an agent and, about a year and a half later, a three book contract from Kensington Books’ Zebra imprint. Tender Touch is about a woman, Brianna Wight, who fakes her death to escape an abusive husband and joins a wagon train for Oregon. Because women weren’t allowed to travel alone on the wagon train she hires an ex-mountain man to be her guide. Columbus Nigh is a quiet, gentle man who expects little in life, perfect for repairing the damage marriage has inflicted on Brianna’s heart and, of course, they fall in love. But her husband is hot on their trail.
Q: Where can we buy Forever Mine?
A: The paperback of Forever Mine is available only from used book stores and isn’t always easy to find, which is why I’m so excited to have it on the market again as an e-book, available at any online store that sells e-books, Amazon.com, Smashwords, Barnes & Noble, etc.
Thanks, Char. Darby and I wish you every success…you’re an amazing writer!
Friends, please stop by and visit Char at her website: www.charleneraddon.com.
Updated Sunday 7/22/12: *CONGRATULATIONS* Congrats to Erika, the Winner of the Amazon Gift Card drawing!