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FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions) for Romantic Intrigue Novelist Lynde Lakes

General Questions

Q: What about the money?
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This is the question I get asked most often by readers & new writer's. Okay lets get that out of the way. Writing is a business and it has to be treated that way. A full time writer like myself has to plan on making a living. The writing game is an expensive one. Expenses crawl out of the woodwork like hungry ants, wanting to launch into that chocolate-peanut-butter cake I just put on the counter to cool. There are equipment expenses and supplies. Then when I started selling, I had to add website costs and advertising expenses which are ridiculously high. Then my old equipment failed twice and I needed new and updated equipment. Do my meager royalties cover everything plus a decent living wage? So far, my answer is no. But if I didn’t expect things to improve, it would be impossible to keep shelling out my dwindling reserves. Fortunately, I believe in myself and that my loyal readership will grow. I want each reader to find the same joy from reading my books as I find it writing the very best stories I can. So, the bottom line is unless you are an instant Tess Gerritsen or Tom Clancy expect to keep your day job.

Q: Can anyone do it?
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Understand that as a writer, I’m constantly going to conferences, reading and improving my skills, taking and teaching classes. Always improving and helping others along the way so their road isn’t as bumpy as mine has been. But that’s a story for another day.

About the Work

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The Ryan Ranch series occurs chronologically in this order:

  1. Cowboy Lies (11/15/2008)
  2. Lasso That Cowboy (4/24/2009)
  3. Undercover Cowboy (10/16/2009)
Q: Do you have any upcoming projects?
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My next romantic intrigue projects in the hopper are:

  • Book #2 & #3 of my wolf trilogy.
  • Book #4 in my cowboy series.
  • A revision of a competing romance thriller and a few others begging for attention.
  • I have had a novel in my head that has been begging to get down on paper since I started writing seriously over twenty years ago. Until now, the characters and story were too powerful to get as close as required to write the novel.
  • I also have two novels in the final edits and hope to get them sent off publishers and agents before the end of the year.

Writing Questions

Q: How many hours do you write a day?
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I’m extremely disciplined. Therefore, I set a regular writing schedule. I write daily, usually six days a week, five or more hours day. Even when I’m not writing, I’m plotting or taking in the world around me. And I’m definitely not easily distracted; ask my husband who is waving a knife, fork and spoon at me right now, indicating, I hope, that he is ready for his dinner. I smile and nod… just a few more minutes, Honey, I promise just a few more… He has heard that before, but he knows the wait will be worth it. He loves my cooking. And yes, I definitely believe in love in all its forms, sweetheart love, husband wife love, passionate love, love of parents, children, friends pets and the list goes on.

Q: What is your writing Process?
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It’s simple: I get an idea, write a beginning query to see if the story grabs me, then I meet the characters who dictate the story to me like generous little muses. Next, I write the first and last chapter and then do a quick overall synopsis and then I’m off and running. The Characters surprise and delight me all the way and that’s what makes it fun.

Q: Where do you get your inspiration from?
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My inspiration can come from anywhere, newspapers, an expression on a person’s face as they pass me. Seeing a lady, bent and weary waiting for a bus or from personal experiences, twisted and molded to protect the guilty.

To write a novel, I surround myself with atmosphere specific to the book I'm writing. If it’s a western romantic intrigue, I wear a special diamond pin of a boot that I purchased in Dallas Texas and wear the fringed denim vest that I wore the summer I spent on a Texas ranch. The daily journal I kept helped me write COWBOY LIES and my other cowboy stories. And of course, my ranch friends are a constant source of information. I also play all the country western tunes and dig out the snapshot of the last rodeo I attended.

If my novel is set in New Zealand, I surround myself with Maori artifacts and music. To write BILLBOARD COP, I visited Boston for three weeks and lived in the atmosphere until I had a rough draft down. To write MIDNIGHT DESTINY, I spent a lot of time hiking around Makapuu Lighthouse and had pictures of the area tacked all over my walls. Of course it helped that I was living in Hawaii at the time.

Q: How has your personal life influenced your stories?
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If you become my friend, you are my friend for life. If I love you, it is forever. I have strong ties to my neighbors, high school friends and writer friends. And, I find infinite joy in their successes. I’m a family person and I draw a great deal of the heart in my stories from the adventures we shared and the places all over the world that we visited.

Q: What is your favorite novel?
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My favorite novel is always the one in progress, although all of my stories are close to my heart. Right now, I just submitted a thriller-reunion story with an impossible romance when the heroine’s morals forbid her to love the only man who has ever touched her heart. Her past drives her to take risks that could kill her. The hero is a complication that increases the danger while she faces down her own villain.

Q: What is your favorite genre to write about?
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I write mostly romantic intrigues, but I don’t limit myself. I hope that every new work pushes the boundaries of the one before it. I’m open to any plot that strikes my fancy where the heroines are strong, the heroes are challenged to match that strength, and together they combine forces to take down even the most clever and devious villains. A reader might think he or she has my plot all figured out, then I put a twist on the twist. My stories are roller coaster rides from page one to the end. J While I’m writing a novel the three main characters are usually my favorites and the ones I most associate myself with, but when I move on the next trio becomes my favorites. It has to be that way for me to stick happily with the work to the end. I also love my children characters and adore their spunk and courage.

Q: What sets your work apart from other authors in the genre?
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My sense of plot, pacing and voice. I hope that first and foremost that my books give joy and entertainment, and if I’m lucky, an appreciation of the way I think and express myself. When I write I like suspense and romance in every story.

Q: Do your admire any authors?
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I admire too many authors to list them, but I can tell you a few: Tess Gerritsen, Tami Hoag, Nora Roberts, Jill Marie Landis, Jane Porter, Patricia Oliver, John Gresham, Tom Clancy and so many others. And you can tell even by the small sample of authors mentioned that I read across the board. One of my favorite quotations is Amelia Earhart’s: “When a great adventure is offered, don’t refuse it.” I also like William Shakespeare’s: “Assume a virtue, if you have it not.” I like the positive march full steam ahead tone to them.

About Lynde

Q: What do you do when you're not writing?
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When I’m not writing, I’m reading, dancing or traveling.

Q: If you were stranded on a desert island, what are three things you couldn't live without?
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Besides food, water and shelter, are prayer, a dear companion and music.

Q: If you could have a super power, what would it be?
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If given the chance to have a superpower, it would be an ability to reach the hearts of the world. I would use it to put an end to wars and the addictions that destroy families.

Q: What are some of your favorite things?
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My favorite food is fancy salads served with some fragrant just out of the oven homemade bread. And I love vanilla tea and Twinning’s Four Berry Tea. I love the color blue and all music. I like a slew of TV shows although I have little time to watch them. However some of my favorites are Will and Grace, Jag, Law and Order, Darma and Greg. And any relationship show that is funny. And I love movies.

Q: If you could live with one of your characters, who would it be?
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If I could invite one of my characters to come live me for a year it would perhaps be a secondary character in the first of my cowboy trilogy who was a darling housekeeper and cook who was a joy to be around, just like family. The reason is obvious-I could use the help and friendship.

Q: What are your aspirations?
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It would be a dream come true if, within the next two to five years, I see one of my novels on the best sellers list, and myself still writing six days a week. My creative flow is an unexplainable blessing from God that brings me joy and hopefully brings others joy as well.

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