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An Interview with Author and 2017 Rita® Finalist Beth Yarnall

May 2, 2017 by in category Jann says . . . tagged as , , ,

I’m so excited to interview Daphne du Maurier winner and Rita® finalist, Beth Yarnall, on A Slice of Orange today. She writes mysteries, romantic suspense, and the occasional hilarious tweet. A storyteller since her playground days, Beth remembers her friends asking her to make up stories of how the person ‘died’ in the slumber party game Light as a Feather, Stiff as a Board, so it’s little wonder she prefers writing stories in which people meet unfortunate ends. In middle school she discovered romance novels, which inspired her to write a spoof of soap operas for the school’s newspaper. She hasn’t stopped writing since.

For a number of years, Beth made her living as a hairstylist and makeup artist and even owned a salon. Somehow hairstylists and salons seem to find their way into her stories. Beth lives in Southern California with her husband, two sons, and their rescue dog where she is hard at work on her next novel. For more information about Beth and her novels please visit her website- www.bethyarnall.com.

Jann: Welcome Beth to A Slice of Orange. What was it like to receive “The Call” that Atone is a Rita Finalist for Romantic Suspense?Atone | Beth Yarnall | A Slice of Orange

 Beth: Well, first of all I missed The Call. Then I missed the second The Call. I totally forgot it was Rita®/Golden Heart day and slept in. When my phone rang I looked at the display and thought ‘I don’t know anybody in Louisiana.’ It was Farrah Rachon calling me to let me know I was a finalist. Poor thing had to leave me a message. So The Call was really a Call Back. Talk about a duh moment!

I almost couldn’t believe it was real. I really didn’t think this book had a shot because it’s first person present tense and most romantic suspense books are third person past tense. When I was writing it nearly every scene scared me so I knew I was writing something that was deeply emotional that ‘went there’. I’m honored to be included in the amazing list of authors in my category.


Jann: Where did your idea for the Recovered Innocence series come from and what are your plans for the series?

Beth: The idea came with the first line of the first book, Vindicate. That line is—I got my driver’s license on my sixteenth birthday so I could visit my brother in prison.

I often get ideas for a book in the first line and I knew there was a whole book in that sentence and, eventually, a whole series. I plan on writing more books in the series. The idea for the fourth book in the series has been floating around in my head since I first started writing the series. I’m trying to work it into my writing calendar.

Jann: Have you found your dress and shoes for the Rita® ceremony yet?

Beth: I did find a dress. I actually bought two online because I couldn’t decide. After trying them both on I know which one I’ll be keeping and wearing Rita night. You’re going to think I’m weird because I’m more concerned about the jewelry I’ll wear with the dress than the shoes. That’s still up in the air as are the shoes. But hey, the hard part is over. I have a dress!

Jann: Let’s talk about writing.  Are there any words of inspiration on your computer, in your office or in your mind when you write?

Beth: Hoe your own row. It’s my mantra. Hoeing is head down, back to your goal work. If you’re doing it right you can’t see how far you’ve come or how far you have yet to go, but most importantly you can’t see how far ahead or behind others around you are. I just try to keep my head down and work and not get distracted by how much better another author’s career is going or how far behind I am from X or Y author. I try to keep my focus on my goals and work steadily toward them.

Jann: What’s the best writing advice you ever received?

Beth: BICHOK=butt in chair hands on keyboard. There’s really no magic formula. There’s only getting words on the page.

Jann: Do you listen to music when you write?

Beth: Yes. I have a writing playlist I listen to through noise cancelling headphones. Sometimes I’ll create a playlist for certain scenes. If I want a lot of angst I have a punk rock playlist. If I’m trying to get into a love scene I have a playlist of very sexy songs. But mostly I write to the main writing playlist.

Jann: Do you ever run out of ideas? If so, how did you get past that?

Beth: Oh my gosh no. I have too many ideas and not enough time to write them all simultaneously. If it weren’t for deadlines and my inborn stubbornness I’d jump from one shiny new idea to another and never finish a book. I have being a Taurus to thank for making me stubborn enough to not let a book defeat me.

Jann: What are you currently working on and when can we read it?

Beth: I’m working on the first book in a new romantic suspense series. The series is about a rag-tag bunch of FAR FROM HONEST | Beth Yarnall | A Slice of Orangeex-spies and Special Forces folk who do mercenary work for hire. The first book, Far From Honest (on preorder now), is about a burned ex-spy who has to convince the reporter who broke the story that got him burned and his best friend killed to give him the name of her source. She doesn’t know what her story did to him and he doesn’t know how she ended up in the small town The Gods of Redemption call home. They spend the whole book lying to each other and trying to keep their hands off each other. There’s lots of chemistry and the lies they tell only ramp up their sexual attraction. It’s been lots of fun to write and is scheduled to tentatively release in January of 2018, but my publisher is looking to move that date up.

Jann: Where can we get your books?

Beth: Anywhere you buy books. All of my books are widely available.

Jann: Do you have a website, blog, twitter where fans might read more about you and your books?

Beth: The best place to find out what I’m up to is my website—www.bethyarnall.com.

I’m also on Twitter—@BethYarnall

Facebook— https://www.facebook.com/BethYarnallAuthor/

Pinterest— https://www.pinterest.com/bethyarnall/

Instagram— https://www.instagram.com/bethyarnall/

Goodreads— https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/6431701.Beth_Yarnall


I would like to thank Beth Yarnall for taking the time to tell us about receiving The Call and her writing. If you have comments or questions for Beth, please use the comment form below.

 Jann Ryan

Jann Ryan | A Slice of Orange


Jann Ryan grew up with the smell of orange blossoms in Orange County in sunny Southern California, where she has lived her entire life and dreamed up stories since she was a young girl. Never an avid reader, she was in her thirties when she picked up her first romance quite by accident. She fell in love with happily ever after and has been reading romances ever since.

Wanting to put pen to paper, Jann joined of Romance Writers of America®. Currently, she is working on a romantic suspense series set in Stellar Bay, a fictitious town along the California central coast to fulfill her publishing dream.

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Get to Know Kat Martin!

June 2, 2015 by in category Interviews, Spotlight tagged as , , , , , , , , ,

New York Times bestselling author Kat Martin was happy to answer a few questions for our Slice of Orange readers.

Barb: Which of your characters would you like to meet in person? Why?

Kat: One I would definitely want to meet is Rafe Brodie, the hero of my new book, AGAINST THE TIDE. Rafe is smart, rugged, and savvy. Plus he is gorgeous! Another of my favorite characters is Chance McLain from The Secret, a hunky Montana cowboy. I think you can guess the reason I’d like to meet him (grin). I like my heroine Olivia Chandler, also in TIDE. She’s one of the smartest women I’ve written. Liv really has her stuff together.

Jann: What is the one thing about you that people would be most surprised to know?

Kat: I’m a hermit. Unless we are traveling, I pretty much stay home and write.

Barb: What is your favorite gadget?

Kat: I love my iPad mini. I’m a total dinosaur except for that. I’m pretty good on the mini, and I love all the info I can get. Plus I can do my email when I’m traveling.

Jann: Is there a certain type of scene that’s harder for you to write than others?

Kat: I hate writing description. Which is why I don’t put a lot in. I’m not crazy about back-story. I don’t care what my hero/heroine did in high school unless it pertains to what is happening in his or her life now. Sex scenes are difficult to write because I want them to be fresh and match the tone of the story line at that time. I love writing dialog.

Barb: Do you have any plans in the future to write another Historical?

Kat: No more Historicals for me. Actually, I haven’t written one in years. I’ve written about 22 Romantic Suspense novels (plus the ones yet to be published). I feel as though I’ve found my calling. I love writing the hunky guys in my Against books.

Jann: What do you consider to be your best accomplishment?

Kat: Getting published, staying published, writing stories people seem to want to read. Staying four weeks on the New York Times Bestseller list with Against the Sky!

Barb: If you could pick one of your books to be made into a movie for TV or the big screen, which one would you pick and who would you want to play your characters?

Kat: I’ve given that a lot of thought. I would love to see a film made of The Secret, my near-death murder mystery set on a ranch in Montana. Finding the right guy to play Chance McLain, the cowboy part??? I’m open to suggestion. Caitlin, the heroine is a little redhead. Maybe someone out there has an idea for her as well. I think Against the Wind, another cowboy story, would also make a good film.

Against the Tide

Secrets and Danger Threaten in the Land of the Midnight Sun!

Liv Chandler is running for her life. She can’t trust anyone, not even the one man who makes her feel safe-rugged charter boat captain, Rafe Brodie.

Rafe is determined to uncover Liv’s secrets, but the beautiful café owner has a past more dangerous than Rafe can guess. Something terrible is coming, and even in remote Valdez, Alaska, Rafe can’t protect her forever.

Kat will give away a copy of AGAINST THE TIDE to one lucky commenter!!!

Kat is a graduate of the University of California at Santa Barbara where she majored in Anthropology and also studied History. She is married to L.J. Martin, author of western, non-fiction, and suspense novels. Kat has written more than sixty-five novels. Sixteen million copies of her books are in print and she has been published in twenty foreign countries, including Japan, France, Germany, Argentina, Greece, China, Russia, and Spain.

Kat currently resides in Missoula, Montana, on a small ranch in the beautiful Sapphire mountains. Her last nine books have hit the prestigious New York Times bestseller list. Both AGAINST THE WILD and AGAINST THE SKY, her latest release, took top ten spots. AGAINST THE TIDE the 3rd book in the Brodies of Alaska series will hit shelves in a couple weeks!

Visit Kat’s website at www.katmartin.com
Or look for her on Facebook at Katmartin/author.


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Oh, Internet! Wherefore art thou!

September 2, 2014 by in category Jann says . . . tagged as , ,

By Jann Audiss w/a Jann Ryan
Ok, I admit it—I have a love-hate relationship with cable companies and their internet service. What is worse is to realize how really dependent we are on technology. Recently my internet and cable TV went down. Boom. Nothing. Thinking it was just a hiccup, I did my usual routine: unplug the power, count to 10, plug it in again. When that didn’t work, I fixed an ice tea, had a snack to fortify myself, made sure my e-reader was handy and settled in for the adventure of calling my cable company. I have found from past experience to be prepared.
Just before reaching through my phone to strangle the automated attendant (if that were only possible), I was connected to a sweet individual, who I believed was in Texas. After giving her every bit of information about me except for my current weight, we got to the reason for my call. NO SERVICE. To back track just a bit, I did notice a service truck parked outside my home from the cable company, and it had me wondering – coincidence?? Anyway, the nice lady on the phone checked my line from their remote location, found nothing wrong, and set an appointment between 8:00 AM and 12:00 PM for the next day, stating that someone over the age of 18 had to be home. I assured her I was over 18.
I figured, OK we could can live for a day with no service. We have cell phones and the family could watch DVDs. Remember that truck? Just for the heck of it, my sister walked around the corner to check with the service repairman at the main station box to see if by chance he was working on the line. He grunted and brushed her off and told her he was working on the tract of homes across the street. So we all settled in to wait for the appointment the next day.
By 2:00 PM the next day, I once again started on the road to OZ to find out when the technician was going to arrive for my “early morning” appointment. Forty minutes later, I spoke to another wonderful and informative customer service agent; only to find out she didn’t know anything and couldn’t reach anyone to find out. I asked for a supervisor. Now this guy was good. He could talk in circles better than most. By the end of our conversation, I finally got him to admit that he also didn’t know anything. However, I was promised someone would be out the next day.
My son, home for the week, searched our DVD library and started a movie marathon. Not being connected to the outside world by TV or Internet felt weird, like being on an island in the middle of the ocean. On day 4, I had watched or listened to all the Die Hard movies, Transformers, The Mummy Trilogy, and we had started on Star Wars. I became friends with most of the people in the Texas office, and told them to be sure to call if they were ever in Anaheim so we could get together to catch up on the family.
Finally on day 5, Frank Your Helpful Cable Guy arrived in the late afternoon. The connection running from the street to the house was fine and my interior wiring was good to go. We told him the story about the cable guy who had been working on the main utility box the day my service went out, and he told us that was the next place he was going to check. Well, you guessed it. The “new technician” who had been working on the box 5 days ago disconnected my line by mistake. Don’t you just love it? Why couldn’t that idiot have taken the time to check my line when my sister told him we just lost our cable connection?
Needless to say, we were back up and running that evening, which was a good thing. I didn’t want to follow the RITA ceremony at the RWA National Conference on Twitter from my cell phone.
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Facebook, Twitter, and Google+ – Oh My, Oh My, Oh My!!

May 2, 2014 by in category Jann says . . . tagged as , , , , , , , , , , , ,
Jann Ryann
I’m technology challenged. When it comes to the social media world I’m plain scared. Just the thought of posting something incorrectly has stopped me dipping my toe into the water for years. My goal is to break through the fear. When OCC announced its Online Class schedule I was thrilled. There it was– April’s class–Social Media for the Confused and Terrified presented by Elena Dillon. No more excuses by golly. I signed up.
Week 1 – The class started with Facebook, and for four days straight I had my desktop and laptop computers running side by side. Reading lessons and asking questions on one, doing class assignments on the other. I was learning about personal pages and author pages, friending and liking. Even though I’ve had a personal FB page for several years, I’ve never really interacted on it. I had started an author page (Jann Ryan), but hadn’t made it public to the world because I’m not a published author. Well, I hit the published button and it’s now live. To support my fellow classmates (which are a terrific group), I’m friending and liking and trying to comment on posts.
By the fourth day, I was on Facebook overload. I needed a bit of a break, so I thought I would start going through a couple of my file boxes filled with years of writing paraphernalia (handouts, conference stuff, articles and pages of stories.) It was suggested by a good friend to scan what I wanted to keep and toss the rest. I DIDN’T COME OUT OF THE ROOM FOR 4 DAYS! I was scanning and tossing from morning till way into the night. My determination to master FB was transferred to cleaning out paper. I couldn’t stop myself. From the file boxes, I moved to the bookshelves, then back to the file boxes. I was obsessed.
Week 2 – Monday, I came up for air only to be confronted with the next week’s class–TWITTER.  I hadn’t conquered Facebook, now I was facing the Twitter monster with its hashtags, retweets and Tweet chats. Thanks to the wonderful instruction and guidance from my teacher Elena, I marched into the Twitter world. I installed Tweetdeck and selected people to follow. I was fortunate to see meet up Beth Yarnall, author of the Azalea March Mysteries, The Misadventures of Maggie Mae and the Pleasure at Home Series, who gave me some hands-on instructions. Check out her website http://www.bethyarnall.com/ .  I’m still feeling awkward with Twitter, but I know I’ll be Twittering up a storm soon.
Week 3 – My Waterloo is Google+. Don’t get me wrong, I’ve been receiving great instructions, but I realize I need hands on instructions when walking into the unknown. I get the overall idea, but just can’t seem to figure it all out. I need to spend more time on my lessons and work with it more, but life is getting in the way this week.  It’s similar to FB, but now I Hangout with a Circle of Friends (actually, I’m not hanging anywhere yet).
I have one more week to go and one more social media item to learn. Heaven help me.
All that being said, I’m happy I ventured into this new world. I have some wonderful classmates and a great teacher, Young Adult Romantic Suspense author Elena Dillon. Stop by her website http://elenadillon.com/.  
Go forth and conquer!

Jann Ryan grew up with the smell of orange blossoms in Orange County in sunny Southern California, where she has lived her entire life and dreamed up stories since she was a young girl. Never an avid reader, she was in her thirties when she picked up her first romance quite by accident. She fell in love with happily ever after and has been reading romances ever since.

Wanting to put pen to paper, Jann joined Romance Writers of America. Currently, she is working on a romantic suspense series set in Stellar Bay, a fictitious town along the California central coast to fulfill her publishing dream.

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Convesations with Barb and Jann

April 2, 2014 by in category Jann says . . . tagged as , ,

 Au naturel                
 Most of you probably don’t have this issue, but I know many do. We will not go out in public without makeup, perfect hair and the right clothes. Now, I’ve been known to occasionally leave the house to pick up a quick item hiding under big sunglasses, my Sedona hat and wearing a pair of slightly worn sweats, but today I woke up with a different attitude.
After over forty years of avoiding au naturel in public, I decided to do the unthinkable. I got up, showered, dressed in yoga pants and T-shirt, tossed my hair around, grabbed my laptop and headed to Corner Bakery to write. I didn’t want to stop the freeing feeling I was experiencing of just get up and go. I didn’t want to take an hour to get ready, read emails or answer questions from family that would start a “to do list” and clutter my mind before I even got out the door.
So, I arrived, no sunglasses or hat, casually dressed. People in the parking lot and patio area outside CB didn’t turn into stone, leaving a garden of statues in my wake, as I made my way to the entrance. I was shocked. Customers inside didn’t gather together to point and whisper. The girl at the counter didn’t look at me with sympathy wondering why I didn’t look in the mirror before I left home.  Instead, I ordered my coffee, found my perfect place to settle in (with electrical plug close by) and got started. My mind free and clear – open for inspiration. It was a beautiful day outside and I felt the same way myself.
Jann RyanHave a beautiful day, 
Jann Ryan

Jann Ryan grew up with the smell of orange blossoms in Orange County in sunny Southern California, where she has lived her entire life and dreamed up stories since she was a young girl. Never an avid reader, she was in her thirties when she picked up her first romance quite by accident. She fell in love with happily ever after and has been reading romances ever since.

Wanting to put pen to paper, Jann joined Romance Writers of America. Currently, she is working on a romantic suspense series set in Stellar Bay, a fictitious town along the California central coast to fulfill her publishing dream.

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