Welcome to the my stop of the blog tour for A Thousand Stolen Moments by Connie Ann Michael. Read through for my interview, an excerpt, and a giveaway
A Thousand Stolen Moments by Connie Ann Michael
When twenty-two year old Emme Sawyer joins a Marine unit heading into Helmand Providence, she focuses on what she does best: keeping her men safe. But, when the unit is hit by an IED, Emme realizes she can’t save everyone. With her humanity on the line, and her faith in question, she seeks comfort from Raven, her commanding officer. Soon, Emme develops feelings that don’t belong in a combat zone, where each step could be your last.
Raven keeps his emotions locked up tight, never allowing the men to see him sweat. But when Emme joins his unit, all bets are off; and the feelings he thought he left stateside begin to emerge. Knowing that the deserts of Afghanistan are the last place to start a romance, and the United States military’s view on fraternizing; Raven tries to deny his heart. Emme and Raven learn you can’t always choose where love finds you. And that sometimes, you just have to trust in God’s plan.
March 3, 2015
1. Where/how did you come up with the idea for your story? Did it suddenly pop into your head or were you brainstorming?
The idea of writing a military romance has been in my head forever. I loved watching MASH and China Beach, television shows of the eighties, and would think about how a woman could have a more important role in the story. So I had the basic idea years ago.
2. Did you start with the main character, the world or the overarching concept?
The main character. The setting originally was in Vietnam but when the war in Afghanistan and Iraq began I started researching and changed the setting.
3. Panster or Plotter? Or in between?
Kind of in between, leaning a bit more towards pantser.
4. Are you a fan of writing contests?
I use to do a lot of them but never got much input or got input that was polar opposite so I do not do them anymore.
5. How did you find your agent? How many query letters did you send? I sent a bazillion letters out.
I found my current publisher after the publisher I was with before folded. We connected through the first publisher and I was very excited to be a part of an inspirational press.
6. What's the best marketing tool you've found so far? Word of mouth is the best marketing tool.
Signings help get your name out there but can be pricey. I find blog tours helpful as well.
7. What do you like best about your mc?
I love how she puts other’s needs before her own and how brave she is.
8. What do you like best about your main antagonist?
I like the fact he isn’t really an antagonist, he’s struggling to be an equal with the mc.
The freezing temperatures of the night woke Doogie. The area was quiet, except for a few light snores coming from the men. She got up, stretched her muscles, and then grabbed an MRE and headed to the fire.
Raven’s shadowed outline was visible next to the fire as she approached.
“Quiet tonight,” she said.
“You should be sleeping. Not sure when it will be this quiet again.” Raven’s deep voice sent a chill through her.
“I’m not much of a sleeper.”
“We have guys with NVG’s watching. The Taliban might be using the dark to maneuver around our flanks. But I don’t think so. You should at least rest.”
“Hmm,” she hummed while she squeezed the bag she held.
“What’s for dinner?” Raven’s expression was more relaxed than usual.
“Uh?” Doogie held the label toward the fire. “Applesauce. But it’s debatable as to the amount of apples in it.”
“I have some beef stew in my pack if you want it. You can’t keep up with only applesauce.”
“Why is it always stew? Why can’t they MRE a cheese burger?” Doogie sucked on the bag.
“I think the food has to be juicy to get out of the bag.” Raven shrugged.
“Stew has chunks of mysterious stuff. You’d think a few chunks of normal food would fit in there. Besides, ketchup is juicy.”
“Well when you get out you can go into the business of creating wonderful gourmet MRE’s. The men would love you.”
“And the women.” Doogie smiled at him.
The corner of Raven’s mouth looked like it might have turned up, but she wasn’t sure. “Who can forget the women?”
“I’ll hire you if you need a job after the war,” Doogie offered.
Raven snuck a quick glance at her before returning to stare at the fire. “I’d appreciate that. I could be your tester. I’ll see if the cheeseburger is up to par. I’ve been known to cook a mean burger.”
“Excellent. Maybe you could even cook the burger since I don’t cook.” Doogie rubbed her hands together at the thought of seeing Raven after the war.
“You don’t cook?” Raven seemed surprised.
“I enlisted at nineteen so didn’t have time to hone my domestic skills.”
“Oh,” was all he said.
They stood in awkward silence for a few minutes.
“Today’s Valentine’s Day,” she blurted.
Raven narrowed his eyes, his mouth in its signature scowl, and then started to laugh. “Yeah, I guess it is.”
“It’s just. Well Tahk told me.” She was such a dork.
“Was he planning a party? Handing out Valentines to the locals?”
Doogie’s head jerked to look over at Raven. Had he just tried to be funny? She’s never had an actual conversation with him. Usually he talked at her…or yelled at her. She let out a stiff laugh. “No.”
Connie grew up in Seattle but moved to Central Washington to be closer to all things outdoors. Married with two college boys she keeps busy kayaking, mountain biking, skiing ,and hiking through the beautiful hills of the Wenatchee Valley. Growing up with a love of reading the transition into writing seemed natural and she can be found on summer days writing under the tree in her front yard surrounding by her three dogs.
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