Sunday, February 28, 2010

Trish Perry ~ Interview!

*Since the giveaway and interview were posted separately you can comment on either to enter the giveaway*
Today author Trish Perry is telling us about her book, Sunset Beach. She has offered an autographed copy of her book to one lucky commenter. She will also be stopping by throughout the week to answer your questions! So if you have anything you want to ask her, you can include it in your comment for entering the contest. If you are only leaving a question in the comment and not entering the giveaway please say so.

Welcome, Trish! Tell us a little about yourself.
My messy past includes working for attorneys in Washington, D.C., as well as working for the Securities and Exchange Commission prior to my training for and working as a stockbroker. While a broker, I decided to get myself back to school and get my degree, because I really wanted to by a psychological therapist. But by the time I completed my degree, I had been exposed to creative writing and fell in love with it. I decided to write for a couple of years before deciding whether or not to get my doctorate in Psychology. I never went back to school—loved the writing too much. I live in Northern Virginia with my brilliant, funny teenaged son, and I have a married daughter, dear son-in-law, and fantastic grandson.

How long have you been writing? How many books do you have published?
I’ve been seriously writing for about 16 years. I published my first novel in 2006 (so I wrote and submitted for ten years before gaining publication). My published books are The Guy I’m Not Dating (2006), Too Good to Be True (2007), Beach Dreams (2008), and Sunset Beach (2009).

If you compared your writing style to any other Christian Fiction author, who would it be?
That’s a tough one. My novels could be called romantic comedy, so in that respect they’re similar to those of Kristin Billerbeck, Sandie Bricker, Sandra Byrd, and Erynn Mangum.

Also, how would you rate the romance in you books?
I’d say they’re pretty G. I don’t calculate ahead of time how much kissing will or won’t go on. I take it as it falls into place. But none of my novels have more than, say, two to four kissing incidents in them—I tend to focus more on the romantic build-up. The mutual attraction plays a far larger role than any actions taken as a result of it. I’ve never heard negative feedback from readers that I include too much or too little kissing. Just like Goldilocks: juuuuuust right.

In your own words tell us a little about Sunset Beach.
Here’s how I word the summary of Sunset Beach:
Sonny Miller is tired of not knowing who she is. Soon she’ll begin graduate school to earn her masters in Psychology. But how can she counsel future clients about their identities when she isn’t even sure about her own? To that end she has cooked up a little meeting at a certain beach house in San Diego.

Sonny’s mother, classical soprano Teresa Miller, isn’t aware she’s about to be reunited at the beach house with her sister, Melanie Hines, after 25 years of estrangement. And Sonny isn’t aware her mother has invited a surprise guest of her own. Russian adoptee, Irina Petrova, finds herself dragged along on a trip so tumultuous she summons her handsome concert violinist brother for moral support.

The four women converge on the funky little beach house in San Diego, each with her own disappointments and hopes about family, identity, and love. For Sonny, the trip reveals all she expected and more than she ever dreamed.

Series info: Sunset Beach is the fourth book in The Beach House Series. Sally John wrote the first two books in the series, and I wrote the second two (my other one is Beach Dreams, Book 3).

Here’s how Harvest House worded it on the back cover. The first paragraph comes directly from the book:
Sonny opened the door, so excited she wanted to jump up and down. For just a moment she remembered the scene in The Wizard of Oz when Judy Garland survived the tornado and opened the door to a fantastic world of Technicolor and amazing events.

Sonny Miller plans to use a week’s vacation at a San Diego beach house to find the answers she has wanted all her life. Her mother ran away from home before Sonny was born; now it’s time to know why. She invites her mother, Teresa, and her mother’s estranged twin, Melanie, to the quiet and quirky beach house. They both show up…and with surprises of their own. Teresa, a successful classical singer, brings her latest protégé, and Melanie brings along secrets about Teresa and the identity of Sonny’s father.

Strong personalities cause big waves, and Sonny quickly finds herself in over her head. But as the twins begin to reconcile and reconnect, Sonny makes some surprising connections—romantic and otherwise—of her own.

Come to the beach house, where you will discover that between each sunrise and sunset is another day for healing, laughter, rediscovering the importance of family, love and romance, and embracing the promise of God’s tender mercy.

What made you want to write this story?
Actually, after Beach Dreams, Book 3 in the series, released, Harvest House asked me if I’d be interested in writing Sunset Beach. Of course, I’m not insane, so I said yes, indeedy! They suggested the title, and I worked from there. I had no story in mind, so I took time to formulate all new characters and to learn more about the San Diego area. I really enjoyed the way the characters and storyline popped up.

What research did you have to do for this book?
I had already done considerable research for Beach Dreams, which had the same setting (all of the books in The Beach House Series are set in the same house on Mission Beach). But I had used up all of the places I researched when I wrote Beach Dreams, so I had to scramble to learn of other places for my new hero and heroine to go! That was a challenge but also great fun, and the new places put story ideas into my mind. I loved that.

Who would you pick to play the lead roles if this book was made into a movie?
• Sonny would be played by Mandy Moore.
• Sonny’s mother Teresa and Aunt Melanie are identical twins, so I would have them both played by Nancy Travis (but in different styles).

• I had a particular male model in mind for Grig, the hero, although I pictured Grig with a stronger jawline.

• I also had a model in mind Irina. I don’t know the model’s name, but Irina and Grig are of Russian decent, so I like these two models’ exotic looks.

What are you working on now or going to write next?
I just finished the manuscript for my next book, which is scheduled for a September 1 release. It’s the first in my new series, The Tea Shop Series. Book One is called The Perfect Blend. It’s about a young woman who turns her back on her family, friends, home, and job to elope with a young attorney, only to have him stand her up when she arrives in his hometown. Too ashamed to go home, she tries to make her way in the charming little town. Along the way she meets a wonderful man and then must make some decisions when her fiancé returns to make amends.

How can readers get in contact with you?
If readers visit my website (, there’s a link for sending me an email. I love hearing from readers!

What are you currently reading?
I don’t just read Christian fiction. I just finished reading Between Here and April, by Deborah Kogan, and now I’m reading The Help, by Kathryn Stockett. I think the next inspirational title I’m reading is Debby Mayne’s upcoming novel.

Tell us something surprising about yourself that readers may not know.
I’m studying to be a courtroom reporter. Not only do I look forward to the stimulating people and situations I’ll come across in that field, I’m looking forward to the bills I’ll be able to pay with the paychecks! I don’t ever want to give up writing—not as long as it’s clearly God’s will for me—but the whole concept of the starving artist rings particularly true for most single Christian novelists!

If you could be any animal, which would you choose? Why?
I once said I’d choose to be a seahorse, because the male is the one who carries the babies. I thought that was cool. But I think being able to fly would be fantastic, so maybe a bird. But I’d want to be a smart bird, like a parrot.

I’d have to say red.

Childhood memory?
A family camping trip to Yosemite National Park when I was about eight. We stayed in a cabin, hiked, explored, shopped at the gift shop, where everything is fascinating to an eight-year-old girl. One of my favorite parts of that memory was when we stopped at a mountain stream and drank the fresh water. My sibs and I had bought these little collapsible plastic drinking cups, so this was our big moment. Our tap water must not have been very good, because I still remember how truly sweet that stream water tasted.

Era to write about?
I tend to write contemporary stories, although I may dabble in some other eras in the future.

What is/was this book’s release date?
Sunset Beach was released July 2009.

Do you have a link to a place to read the first chapter of this book?
Yes, the first chapter is posted on Harvest House’s site:

**Remember, you can enter the giveaway on this post, or the 'giveaway' post.**

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