Guest Author Christy Gissendaner

Welcome to the Blog Christy, Why don’t you tell us a little about Overnight Sensation.

I’m actually just getting back into writing again. I had to take a break as I got married and began to raise a family. As the mother of three boys (ages 4, 3, and 2) I will admit that it’s hard to find time, but I have finally learned to balance my duties between a full-time job, mom, and writer. Now that the boys are out of diapers (thank goodness!) I decided it was time to get back to it. I’ve recently submitted two contemporaries, both filled with humor and heat!

In the mean time, one of my absolute favorite works is Overnight Sensation. It deals with a plus sized heroine that has to choose between two sexy brothers. Not many romances stray from the “typical” heroine physical characteristics, so I loved doing something different .

Where were you when you got your first book contract? Who did you tell?

My very first book contract came right after I graduated from college. I was a very secretive writer at first, so the only person I told for several days was my mom. Of course she announced it for me so pretty soon everyone knew.

What draws you to write your genre and sub genre?

I’ve always loved romantic comedies, either in movies or books. So naturally I veered toward that path. I also enjoy spicing things up with paranormal elements. I want my readers to enjoy a lighthearted, fun read and I hope that is what I give them.

Do you have any tips for new writers?

The one thing I’ve noticed that I did a lot as a new writer was to use the phrase, “He felt” or “She felt”. Instead of saying, “She was annoyed.” I would fall into a trap of saying, “She felt annoyed.” One editor pointed it out to me several years ago and thankfully I now catch myself before I make that mistake. I also realized I use “she frowned”, “he smiled, “she winked.” With my current works, I have gone back and removed virtually all of these and made the action more implied rather through dialogue or wording. I want my readers to visualize what is happening instead of me spoon feeding it to them.

What is your guilty pleasure?

Cream cheese brownies, Kendra on Top, and reading in the tub

Where can your readers reach you?

Readers can visit me on Facebook under Christy Gissendaner or on the web at http://christygissendaner.webs.com

Are you working on another book?

I have two submissions currently, but I do have an idea floating around for a follow up to Overnight Sensation, which I mentioned above.

Do you work on one project at a time or multiples?

I bounce from one project to another quite often. The good thing is I’m a good multi-tasker so to sometimes give my mind a rest on a current work, I will flip to another. I also write historicals as Robin Danner, so I bounce around a lot!

Is there one particular thing that you find challenging about writing?

Selecting a setting is my main challenge. I tend to stick with cities I am familiar with and I’ve about used them all up!

Who is your favorite author?

Julia Quinn – hands down

What are you reading now?

Julia Quinn’s latest as a matter of fact. ; )

Are your characters a reflection on you or anyone you know?

Oh, most definitely! My heroines are probably more Christy than anyone! I also use my friends are inspiration for names and characters.

Do you use more than one pen name? Why?

Originally I had one pen name, Robin Danner. But now that I’m married Christy Gissendaner has become a pen name as well although it was the name I went by for 28 years.

What do you do to get in the mood to write?

I really don’t have to be in a mood. When I get home, I turn on my laptop and just start typing. Some days I may write a paragraph only. Some days I may write an entire book. I’m goal orientated, so once I decide to write I can churn out several books in a short time span. In the past month, I have revised two old works and finished two completely new ones.

What is your favorite thing about writing?

Dialogue! I talk a lot so it pours over into my writing as well.

If you were a supernatural creature, what would you like to be and why?

A vampire, just cause they’re popular right now. LOL!

How long have you been a writer?

Forever it seems! I’ve always written even when it was just for myself. I began to write for the enjoyment of my younger cousins when I was a teenager. At twenty-one, I received my first contract so that would be twelve years now as a “real” writer. Wow, time has flown!

How many books have you written? How many have been published?

Luckily all of my previous works have been published. At the moment, I have eleven works available under both my writing personas.

Do you have a favorite character from one of your own books? Who and Why?

Sadie from The Learning Curve has always been a favorite of mine since I based so much of her story on my real life. I also love Kerri from Overnight Sensation because she proves that you don’t have to be a size 6.

Do you find love scenes difficult to write?

Love scenes are actually where my fingers just fly over the keyboard. Must be my favorite part!

Are any of your personal experiences reflected in your writing?

Oh, yes! It may not be exactly how it went down in my life, but pretty dang close.

How long does it usually take you to write a book?

I can do a short work, like 30,000, words in a week or less if I am really feeling the story. My longest was 90,000 and also happened to be my first novel. I think it took me about three months to write.

Do you set timelines when you’re writing or write when the feeling hits you?

I turn my computer on every day, but I don’t give myself specific word counts to hit every day.

Do your characters talk to you?

No, I don’t believe so. I stay up late thinking of the storyline, but I don’t consider them actual “people”. I connect more to the feel of what is to happen to them next.

Who controls the storyline, you or your characters?

I am not a plotter at all. Sometimes I just start typing with no idea what’s going to come later in the book. Sometimes I even surprise myself with the things that happen. So it’s pretty much the both of us. Although I must say in the series I’m currently working on my husband gave me an excellent idea for the storyline and I went with it even though it was not my original intention.

What is your writing day like once you start a book?

Sit at my laptop, peck some keys, chase my boys around the room, sit back down, peck some more, clean up the mess my boys have made, peck a little more. I usually only get a few hours a night to write.

Do you promo your backlists when you’re writing a new book, or dedicate your time solely to writing?

I am still trying to get the hang of promotion. It seems so time-consuming and I’m shy really, so it always makes me feel like I’m tootin’ my own horn. So when I’m writing, I seldom promote. But once I have a release, you will probably get tired of seeing me, trust me!

How many books do you write in a year?

Zero for the past five. But on average, I would say 3-4.

Excerpt:

She was not imagining it. Griffin Davies was sitting less than fifteen feet from her. Her spine tingled with awareness and her hands and feet felt curiously numb.
Griffin was surrounded by gorgeous women, but he seemed to be engrossed in the
drink he held in one hand. Kerri watched as he drained his glass and motioned for
another. When his eyes lifted and met hers, she was too surprised to do anything other
than continue staring at him. He smiled at her briefly before glancing away.
Griffin Davies had smiled at her! Kerri found it hard to keep still. She wanted to
shout it from the rooftops, but she doubted anyone would believe her. She stopped staring
at him long enough to get rid of her third glass. When she looked back, he was gone.
She could not prevent a sigh of disappointment.
“Another champagne?” a voice asked at her side.
“Thank you,” she mumbled, and took it without glancing at the waiter. She took a
tiny sip and the bubbles tickled her nose. “Achoo,” she sneezed, then rubbed her nose
gently.
“Bless you,” the guy said.
She glanced up then to give the waiter a smile of thanks, only to realize that it was
Griffin Davies. The smile froze on her face.
Griffin’s blue eyes twinkled with amusement. “Most people say thank you.”
“Thank you,” she said in a strained voice. Griffin Davies was talking to her! It was a wonder she didn’t pee all over herself in excitement. The dozens of magazines she owned with his face on the cover didn’t even begin to do him justice. If it was possible, he was even more attractive in person.
He motioned to the couch. “Do you mind if I sit down?”
“No, of course not,” she said, and slid over to make room for him. It put her
perilously close to the couple making out, but she pretended they weren’t there.
Griffin sat and stretched his long legs out in front of him. He was dressed casually in jeans and a pullover, but she had never seen a more attractive sight. Except for maybe the photo spread of him in nothing but his underwear. At the thought, she felt herself flush.
Griffin did not seem to notice the effect he had on her. He put an arm on the back of the couch, putting them in close contact. Kerri caught a whiff of expensive cologne and her mouth watered at the smell.
“I have never seen you here before,” Griffin remarked as his gaze slowly traveled the room.
Kerri licked her lips and tried to speak in a normal voice. “Well, this is my first visit to New York.”
He nodded. “I saw you come in with Jacinda. Is she a friend of yours?”
“My roommate. We just met today.”
He lifted his hand and waved at someone across the room. Kerri glanced up to see
who had caught his attention, but she couldn’t tell. The room was getting more crowded
and she couldn’t even tell where Jacinda had gotten off to.
“Do you dance?”
Kerri’s gaze shot back to Griffin. “What?”
His lips curled up at the corners. “Do you dance?”
“A little,” Kerri admitted. She was no J. Lo, but she could hold her own on the dance floor.
Griffin stood and reached for her hand. “Then what are we waiting for?”
She stared at his hand as if it were a snake. A tempting snake, but dangerous. “You want to dance with me?” She hated the sound of surprise in her voice.
“Why else would I ask you?”
Kerri put her hand in his and a thrill shot along her palm at the feel of his warm hand against hers. He led her out of the VIP room and down the stairs to the dance floor. Heads turned as they passed and Kerri was aware of the envious looks she was receiving from the girls in the club. They were probably wondering what a chubby girl like her was
doing dancing with one of the sexiest men on Earth.

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