Thursday, June 25, 2020

FEatured Author: Amanda Shelley

 Welcome Today's Featured Author 
Amanda Shelley!!

 Collide: A Sweet Romance

Falling head over heels was the last thing I expected.


Coffee is everywhere – and more than my ego is bruised.

When the handsome stranger I plowed into calls me by name, mortification sinks in.

He rushes off to class. I run home to change, hoping to forget the whole incident.

If only I could be so lucky.

I quickly find it’s a small world and Gavin Wallace is completely unavoidable. Everywhere I turn he’s there. In my classes. Hanging with my friends.

I’ve got his full attention and I have to admit, I like it a lot more than I should.


About Amanda Shelley:
Amanda Shelley loves falling into a book to experience new worlds. As an avid reader and writer, sharing worlds of her own creation is a passion that inspired her to become an author. She writes contemporary romance with characters who are strong and sexy with a touch of sass.
When not writing, Amanda enjoys time with her family, playing chauffeur, chef and being an enthusiastic fan for her children. Keeping up with them keeps her alert and grounded in reality. She enjoys long car rides, chai lattes and popping her SUV into four-wheel drive for adventures anywhere.
Amanda loves hearing from readers. Be sure to sign up for her newsletter and  follow her on social media. Join her reader’s group Amanda’s Army of Readers to stay up to date on her latest information.
Social Media Links:

Interview with Amanda Shelley:

1. Can you tell us a little about your books?

I write contemporary Romance. My characters are strong and sexy with a touch of sass. My next release is a sweet romance, but don't worry, the characters are still strong and a bit sassy.

2. How many books have you written? Which is your favorite?

Gahhh.... asking me to pick my favorite book, is like asking me to pick my favorite child. I'm going to stick with what my grandma says and say, "I love the one I'm with - the most." The truth is, while I'm writing, my current book is my favorite. Or I wouldn't be able to write it. I'm a pantser and if my characters aren't speaking to me, I'd have a really hard time finishing the story. But these characters don't just stay on the page, they live invade my entire being and I think about them for months before I actually put the words on a page.

My first love was Resilience. It's about a man who comes home from leave to surprise his parents and he gets the surprise of his life. Instead of surprising his father, he finds his world thrown off course by the beautiful woman with a sexy smile, wicked sass and the mouthwatering ability to keep him on his toes. I had so much story for Sam and Enzo, that I had to make it a duet, and that is how I came to write Resolution, the conclusion of their story.

My third book was Making the Call. It is a sports romance that was a blast to write. I fell so hard for the characters in this book. It was so much fun to research the life of a football coach, who happens to be the youngest in the league. (Yes - Sean McVay might have been the inspiration to this book - I had never heard of him as I'm a huge Seattle Seahawks fan. But I quickly found myself watching the Rams - though let's be clear it was just to see more of him). However, other than the fact that Luke Leighton is the youngest coach in the league, I doubt there are many similarities. Luke returns to Anderson Island for a much needed break to gear up for his first season as head coach. Dani literally crashes into his life making his mind focus on the sexy brunette with the sailors mouth rather than his teams next play, which makes him wonder if he will make the right call.

Collide will be my fourth book published. (Though technically, it was the first book I wrote that made me feel like I wanted to be an author. I've always been an avid reader, but Alex and Gavin's story just would not stop swirling around in my head. I thought if I wrote it, the thoughts would go away. I was so wrong. When I started to put the words on the page, they just flowed. I found I had this usual high after telling more of their story. I just couldn't stop. Before I knew it I had written over 150K, and it wasn't even finished. Thank goodness, I had the sense to get some beta readers and a good editor. I cut over 60K from this book before even sending it to them and finished it under 100K.) But I digress...

Back on topic, Collide is a sweet college romance about a girl who goes to college, determined to keep her focus on her goals. One morning she literally crashes into a guy on campus. When he calls her by name, she's mortified. She rushes off, hoping to forget the whole situation, but she quickly learns Gavin is completely unavoidable. Apparently the world is much smaller than she thought. He's in her classes, friends with her new friends and everywhere she least expects him. It wouldn't be that big of a deal, but she can't shake the feeling when he's near, and she may like him a lot more than she should.

I have another book written, and off to the editor that releases in September. Drew is the first book in my Perfectly Independent Series. It will be part of a 3-5 book series I'm working on. This series is about a group of friends who are completely content on their own and certainly not looking for love, but find it. Drew is a D1 basketball player who is focused on getting into med school, specifically tries to pick a lab partner that will keep him focused and keep up his GPA. Abby fit the bill perfectly, until she showed up one night to study and he saw her in an entirely different light.

I'm currently working on book two of that series - Vince. Since his parents died, he's put his life on hold to help his sister get through college and while helping Vanessa raise her daughter. He'll meet Sydney. She'll make him wonder if she's worth the risk to his well laid out plans to take a chance on her.

Believe it or not, except for Collide, all my books are written in one world. Sam and Enzo make their way into Making the Call. Dani's brother Damien, will be the main character in book three of the Perfectly Independent series. His love interest will be Vanessa, Vince's sister. 

I've also left opportunities in each book to potentially work it into a series of its own, should the characters start talking loud enough. I have so many ideas in my head, I can't wait to find the time to write all the words.

3. How do you pick your book covers?

I might be a bit different when picking out my covers. I typically write my blurb and create the covers before I write too much of the book. It is helpful to get my feel for the characters and helps me stick to the blurb as I go through the writing process. 

I was fortunate to meet my designer by chance at a conference a few years ago. Amy Queau has always been able to bring to life my visions. For example, my first two books are set in the Columbia River Gorge and the background is actually significant in Sam and Enzo's story. She was able to work her magic and use photos I found on a stock image site. She was able to tie in the football theme brilliantly in Making the Call and make each book unique, yet a part of the series in the Perfectly Independent series. In a nutshell, I have her custom design my covers, using stock images.

4. If you could be friends with one of your characters, which one would you choose?

Hmm.... this is a hard one. If we met in real life, I'm sure I'd be friends with all of them. But, if I could become friends with just one of my characters, I think I would choose Sam. She's strong, funny, and you never have to guess what she's thinking (especially if you're Enzo). Her lack of filter would make for interesting times and I would love to talk books with her. I could also relate because I have kids and love football. I too yell at the TV when the Seahawks are on.

5. Do you work with an outline, or just write?

I'm a bit of a hybrid. I plot out major points along the story line, but I completely fly by the seat of my pants to get there. I listen to my characters as they drive the story. Sometimes they take me in a direction I didn't know I needed the story to end up.

I do write my story from beginning to end. I can't jump around, as I pants my way between each big scene.

6.  If you ever experience a case of writer’s block, how do you cure it?

Yessss! I've had writer's block. The best way to get through it is to make sure I sit down in the chair and write for short periods of time. When I write daily, it happens less for some reason. Sprinting helps me so much because I know I only have to focus for 20 minutes at a time. 

If I'm really stuck, it helps to go back to the beginning and start a round of edits. By the time I get back to where I'm stuck, it comes to me.

I typically start each writing session by reading the previous chapter or the work from the day before. By doing that, I get into the mood and remember where I need to go. I will make changes and then keepwriting. 

7. If your fairy godmother waved her wand and whisked you away to the location of your choice, which place would you choose?

The beach. Even in Washington where you wear sweatshirts year-round, I'd rather be at the beach any day. I don't like extremely hot or humid weather, but give me a place on the beach and I'm happy. I would love a beach house where I have a deck (away from the sand) that I could hear and see the water. I'd love nothing more than to get out my laptop and write. Or just sit on the sand and read a book. I take my kids to the beach as often as I can. Thank goodness we only live two hours away.

8. What  writing projects are you currently working on?

I mentioned this before, but I am working on my Perfectly Independent Series. I will write at least three to five books in that series. I also hope to create a few of my stand alone books into some series as well, but it will all depend on which characters are the loudest when I go to write the words.

No comments:

Post a Comment