Friday, April 8, 2016

Interview & Giveaway with Lisa Belcastro


Jaime: Thank you, Lisa, for being on the Coffee Cups and Camisoles blog! We’re excited to have you here, to learn more about you and your books!! We've not had the privilege of meeting before and I've not read your books, so it is great to get to know you!


Lisa: Thank you so much for having me visit. Does everyone have their coffee or tea, and a good book nearby?

Jaime: ME! COFFEE! :) Ok, let's get started! :) 

What authors do you like to read?

I am an avid reader. Yesterday I finished reading Sandra Orchard’s A Fool & His Monet, and I’m already counting the days until book 2 in the Serena Jones series comes out in the fall. I’m an avid reader of Denise Hunter, Andy Andrews, Karen Kingsbury, Tessa Afshar, Janette Oke, William Young, and so many more.

What book or books have had a strong influence on you or your writing?

The Chornicles of Narnia series led me to a fascination with time travel. Left Behind, and the entire series by Jerry Jenkins and Tim LaHaye, changed my view of the rapture and therefore my life as a Christian. Love Comes Softly by Janette Oke introduced me to the world of Christian romances, and that has forever changed my reading list. My favorite book is The Traveler’s Gift by Andy Andrews. I read it multiple times a year, and every time I learn something new. Though fiction, the story has more life lessons than I can learn in one, five, or ten readings.

What’s more important: characters or plot?
A good plot is essential. The best-written characters can’t go anywhere without a great plot. That said, my characters are near and dear to my heart and I always want to discover everything I can about them and then express their deepest thoughts, greatest sorrows, and biggest dreams throughout the story.

Is there one subject you would never write about as an author and what would it be?


Horror/demonic story lines hold no interest for me, even when Biblically correct. I’m a wimp, so I’ll never voluntarily venture into worlds where there is a lot of violence. I’m one of those girls who enjoys a sweet love story before bed, and in the morning, and the middle of the day.


How important are names to you in your books and how do you choose them?


I spend hours, no days, thinking about, researching, and then testing out characters’ names. A character’s name, and any potential nicknames, have to fit the person and “feel” right. A character’s name is almost as important as naming a child or beloved pet. My characters become family and they stay with me, especially since I write series. Their names have to sit well in my heart and mind because they are going to be there for a very long time.


What secret talents do you have? Because here at the CCC blog we have all kinds of them ;)


Shhhhhhhh - I’m a cat whisperer! Seriously, I have three cats and I’m certain I know exactly what each one of them is saying at any given moment. And when I speak to them, they listen and respond. Ben, my office assistant, has helped write numerous books and is full of great ideas.

I’m also known as a great cook who grows her own organic vegetables, herbs, and fruits, and goes fishing to catch dinner. If I could grow Cacoa trees, I’d make my own chocolate and truly be living in paradise!

What were you like as a child? Steady-going like our Anne, a tornado like Jaime, and adventurous soul like Erica, or an avid-reader like Gabrielle?

I was, and still am, an avid reader who loves to take great adventures in books as well as seeking out great adventures in life, especially if said adventures involve travel to foreign countries or exciting
places here in the States or Canada.


What are your writing goals for 2016?


I have two books coming out this year, Audition for Love, which needs to have final edits done, and Shenandoah Song, which I have to finish writing. Those are practical goals. I’m attending two writers’ conference this year, where I hope to learn more about the craft and connect with fellow authors. My biggest goal, though, is to research and outline a book that I have had in my head for the last three years. It’s a huge project, deep in emotions and traumas, and will be both draining and healing to write. The characters are now starting to come to life as the plot unfolds.


Lastly, will you leave us with a snippet from your book that is one of your favorites and gives us a glimpse into its pages?


I’d love to! This scene is from A Dream for Love, the first book in my Possible Dreams trilogy.


The sun was lowering in the sky when the limo turned onto the dirt road leading to Ryan’s home. Sure enough, two white horses and a carriage waited for them. The carriage was trimmed with tiny white lights and pink roses.

“Mommy, it’s so pretty.”

Gracie’s words and wide-eyed expression summarized Laurel’s thoughts.

A second herald approached them, carrying a block of steps, much sturdier than a stepladder. He set the mounting block next to the carriage.

“My ladies, may I offer assistance?” Gracie stepped forward, accepting his proffered hand and remembering to lift the front of her dress as she climbed up. Laurel followed, snuggling close to Gracie and carefully wrapping them in the warming blanket left on the seat.

As the horses trotted up the road, Laurel found that she was holding her breath. She exhaled then breathed in slowly, hoping to calm her racing heart. Gracie was chattering away, mindless that Laurel’s thoughts were on Ryan, what he would say, how he would hold her as they danced, and whether their night would extend past the little squirt’s bedtime.

When the house came into view, Gracie squealed in delight. Laurel drew in a sharp breath. The walkway was lined with sixteen rose bushes, the exact ones she’d sold to a landscaper, or someone posing as a landscaper, two days ago. Candles flickered in dozens of white bags set at intervals from the parking area to the front door. And when her eyes followed the trail of shimmering lights, Laurel discovered Ryan standing in the doorway.

He was dressed in a black tuxedo, too far away for Laurel to see exactly how handsome he looked but close enough to steal her breath. Ryan walked toward them. When the carriage came to a stop, he was standing right there, more handsome than she’d ever seen him.

Ryan held one single white rose and one single pink rose. “Hello, princesses.”

Enter to win a copy of A Dream for Love!






Lisa Belcastro lives with her family on Martha’s Vineyard. She loves time with her family and friends, running, gardening, outdoor activities, cooking, chocolate, reading, traveling, a healthy dose of adventure, and her cat, Ben, who keeps her company while she creates fictional lives for the numerous characters living inside her head.

Lisa runs as an ambassador for TEAM 413 (www.team413.org), and has completed a marathon (26.2 miles) in all fifty states.

Lisa’s stories are set on the Vineyard amidst the magnificence of the ocean, the beauty of sandy beaches, rolling hills, and ancient cliffs, as well as the people and events that make the Island so very unique.
When she’s not at her desk, Lisa is living in paradise, volunteering at her daughter’s school, serving in her church community, planting and weeding her numerous gardens, training to run the Walt Disney World Dopey Challenge in January 2016, walking the beach looking for sea glass, or enjoying a great meal while she pens the cuisine column for Vineyard Style Magazine.
www.facebook.com/belcastrolisa

www.lisabelcastro.com

www.twitter.com/VineyardRomance

www.instagram.com/mvauthor



3 comments:

  1. Hi, Lisa and Jaime! Great interview and great book!

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  2. I just love Lisa's books!! I am a very big fan of hers. :) I love the sweet 'getting to know each other' part of romance books. Lisa does a fabulous time travel in her Winds of Change series. I highly recommend!

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  3. Romance novels most of the time have happy endings and that's what I like.

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