Archive for March, 2010

Today I am thrilled to talk with Desert Breeze Author author Stephanie Burkhart about her upcoming story in the Desert Breeze Anthology “Be Mused” — and other things, too!

Please tell us a little about your story; what inspired you?

STEPH: The story is called “Matchmaking Amusement.” For the muses, I drew on a pair of ancient lovers, Tristan and Isolde. They’re from the muse island, New Galatia, near Ireland. I also had an opportunity to travel through Europe when I was in the military, so I drew inspiration from Berchtesgaden, Germany. It’s a place I’ve been to several times. My husband and I went there early in our relationship when we were falling in love. Berchtesgaden is a very romantic place for me.

I haven’t had the chance to read your story yet. Please tell me a little
about the plot.

STEPH: Isolde is a muse who inspires contemporary action/adventure writer, Jane Ryan. Jane lives in NYC. When Jane finishes her novel, Isolde announces she’s going on vacation and heads off to Berchtesgaden. Tristan is a muse who inspires World War II action/adventure writer, Antonio Martinez. When Antonio finishes his story, Tristan goes on vacation to – you guessed it – Berchtesgaden. When he meets Isolde, the sparks fly, but in order for them to have happily ever after, they have to get Jane and Antonio to fall in love.

As a writer, what’s your favorite work environment?

STEPH: Jane would say a café in Greenwich Village. Antonio would say a cottage on the beach. But me? Believe it or not, it’s at work, during my down time. My house is one distraction after another with an 8 and 3 year old. Work is where I get my “me” time. I work for LAPD as a 911 dispatcher.

Concerning your writing process, how do you get started with your stories?

STEPH: I usually outline a rough plot and then I conjure up my characters. I do a bio sheet on my characters so I have a reference for them, then it’s pen to paper. Depending on where the characters take me, I modify the plot as needed.

Where do you go or what do you do to get inspired?

STEPH: I draw on memories. When I was younger, I traveled a lot. I have lovely visuals of New England and Germany. I suppose, if anything, I like to drink wine – but not too much if you know what I mean. *wink*.

Please tell us a little about how long you’ve been writing. What got you started? How have the themes in your work changed?

STEPH: I’ve been writing since I was 6. The first thing I ever wrote was a Spiderman comic book inspired by the Spiderman vignettes on the Electric Company back in the 1970’s. I suppose my early themes were action/adventure based, inspired by my love of comic books.

Now, I want to be able to write a little bit of everything well. I’ve been recognized for mainstream/literary stories, children’s writing, horror stories, thriller/suspense, and of course, romance.

Do you have a favorite piece you’ve written? If so, what is it and why is it your favorite?

STEPH: It’s a novel called “The Wolf’s Torment,” which will be releases by Desert Breeze in May 2011. It’s complex and darker than most of my writing. I really learned to write with this novel. I got into the research. I learned a lot about Romania and the Orthodox Faith.

8) Please tell us about jobs in flow, what’ can we look forward to next?

STEPH: “The Hungarian,” Book 1 in the Budapest Moon series released 1 MAY 2010 with Desert Breeze. Matthias Duma is a Hungarian count who meets an exotic British noblewoman, Katherine Archibald and falls in love. He has a secret that is unbelievable. When he tells Katherine, will she still want to be with him?

I also have a children’s story called “The Giving Meadow” coming out in April through 4RV Publishing. I help with the 3 year olds in my church and last year, I came up with a play I called, “The Giving Meadow” for Easter. I showed it to Vivian Zabel and she grabbed it up.

I just signed on to write a story for the Borealis Anthology Desert Breeze is releasing in Dec 2010. In Feb 2011, Book 2 of the Budapest Moon series, “The Count’s Lair” releases.

What would you like to write that you haven’t done yet?

STEPH: The story for the Borealis Anthology. I’ve done futuristic horror, but not romance.

Any particular themes that are near and dear to your heart?

STEPH: I love coming of age stories, and stories where the hero finds out just what he’s made of. “The Wolf’s Torment” is a coming of age story for the main character, Crown Prince/King Mihai Sigmaringen.

I have to ask — who do you like to read?! 🙂

STEPH: JK Rowling! I love her imagination. James Conroyd Martin wrote a wonderful book called “Push Not the River,” and “Against a Crimson Sky.” I adore Keena Kincard. I also enjoy Judith McNaught and Deborah Macgillivray. I also love Tami Dee’s “Mists of Time Series.”

Thank you, and would you please consider coming back again for another visit soon?

STEPH: You bet!

And good luck, Steph! it was a joy to talk with you!

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It never fails: when I tell folks that I am a writer, there’s a sparkle of interest that brightens up the conversation. The sparkle vanishes, though, when I tell them that I write Christian romance novels. I wish someone could tell me why.

To me, Christian romance novels have it all. First of all, there’s love. Second of all, conflict.
Third (and I’m not sure this one isn’t really first) there’s a hot guy and a hot gal. Fourth, there’s the Almighty.

Christian romance novels seem to me to be just the things that could help set this world into a better state of mind – and heart! The novels all deal with people looking for love, happiness and joy. The path to finding this happiness is often very tough. Seems to me everyone could relate to that.

The best thing about Christian romance novels is that you know they always have a happy ending! We are not alone, the Almighty’s loving hand is always there to hold us.

And the hot guy and the hot gal live happily ever after, every time. What’s not to love about that?

Are folks uncomfortable thinking about God and love? Are you?

Thanks and joyful blessings,

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