Interviews: Lisa Harris and Lena Dooley

Elizabeth Goddard Uncategorized Leave a Comment

I’m celebrating Thanksgiving this week, thankful for many things, including my recent book sale–the first one. I have two wonderful ladies to thank for all of their encouragement and support. They joined me in submitting a proposal for a three book series set in Massachusetts. They are Lisa Harris and Lena Dooley. I’ve asked them to join me and share about their novels in the series.

BG: Lisa, your story is entitled A Matter of Trust. Can you tell us a bit about the story?

LH: Losing Kayla Marceilo was one of the most foolish things Zachary Lawrence has ever done. He also knows that in order to get her back he’s going to have to win her trust and prove to her that he’s really changed. Kayla is suspicious of her ex-fiancé’s motives, especially when she finds out that he has a dark secret to hide. Will Kayla be able to trust him even when the evidence begins to point against him?

BG: At the time of this interview, have you written this manuscript?

LH: Yes. . and no. This was actually the first romance I ever wrote. While the writing will have to be left to sit in a lonely computer file some where, I’ve always loved the story line. This story will be a brand new version of the original.

BG: How is it different for you writing a contemporary set in Massachusetts, since you just completed a historical series in the state?

LH: I think it’s so much fun to be able to be a part of the contemporary series as well. It will definitely be an entirely different tone and book then the historical and in some ways easier as I won’t have to worry about period dress, customs, and all the research that went in to my historical series.

BG: A Matter of Trust is a suspense rather than a cozy mystery, which you also write. What are the differences as you see them?

LH: While suspense might send your heroine running from the grip of danger, a cozy has her solving a who-dun-it puzzle. Barbour Publishing has a great basic definition of the two genres. “A Mystery is set up as a maze to be navigated by the protagonist or solver. A Suspense is best represented as a coil that tightens in around the protagonist. A simplified generalization would be to say in a mystery, the protagonist is on the offensive-actively searching and solving, while a suspense puts the protagonist on the defensive-running and evading the villain as time runs out.”

Thanks Lisa!

BG: Lena, tell us about your story, Who Am I?

LD: My heroine thought she knew who she was. However, when her mother dies, she finds out that even though she’s an only child, she doesn’t inherit the house. It’s owned by a grandfather she didn’t know she has, and he wants her to come see him in Massachusetts. That is not the only disturbing revelation. When she goes to meet this man, someone there doesn’t want her to live. Who can she trust?

BG: With the publication of this, how many books will you have published?

LD: With all the different editions, when this book comes out I’ll have 17 titles.

BG: You’ve spent a great deal of time writing historicals. Which would you say you prefer, historical or contemporary.

LD: No. I like to write both contemporary and historicals. I’ve written six complete contemporaries. One of them didn’t sell. And in the proposals that are out, there are many other contemporaries. Publishers have bought more of the historicals is all.

BG: You recently won MENTOR OF THE YEAR at the ACFW conference. Congratulations on that. Why do you think you’re so generous with your time to help aspiring writers?

LD: Actually, God gave a mandate to do that. He sent people to help me exactly when I needed them along the way. Giving my time to other authors is loving service to Him, sort of like a tithe or offering of my time and the talent He gave me.

BG: We look forward to hearing more about Who Am I? as we near the release date.

LD: which is October 2007

BG: Your book is to release first, then Lisa’s in November, then mine in December 2007!

Since it’s Thanksgiving week, do you have a recipe you’d like to share?

LD: How about some tips for easy Thanksgiving? My family loves tradition, so we always have the turkey dinner with all the trimmings. The trick is that as soon as a girl is old enough to learn, you teach them to do one or more of the tasks. Make it theirs to do each year. That way, the work is divided. Since my daughters are grown and my granddaughters are now old enough to help, the only things I do is cook the turkey, make the gravy and fix the rolls (not homemade). I also buy the cranberry sauce. Here’s a recipe for how to use that left-over turkey. Just substitute left over turkey for the chicken.

Sour Cream Chicken Enchiladas (for a crowd)

1 – 4 lb. Chicken, cooked, deboned, and chopped
1 – 3 lb. Carton sour cream
2 – 2 lb. Packages grated cheese
2 – 4 lb. Bottles Pace Thick and Chunky Salsa
3 – dozen (or more) white corn tortillas

In a large bowl, combine chicken, sour cream, and one package grated cheese. (I like to use the feather-grated cheese from Wal-Mart. Sometimes I use all mild Cheddar. Other times, I use the package that is part Cheddar and part Monterrey Jack.) Stir these all together until all the chicken and cheese is covered with sour cream.

Pour one bottle of salsa into a saucepan and heat, but do not boil. (I use the mild salsa, but if you like things hotter, you can use medium or hot. The mild really lets all the flavors come through.)

Dip the tortillas, one at a time, in the salsa until it is warm, but doesn’t start to tear apart. Place on a plate and put a large spoonful of filler, then roll and put in a long, flat baking dish. According to how tight you place the tortillas, you can make probably three pans full. (I like to make these for a crowd, or you can make three and freeze two for later. As a writer, I like to have things on hand that I can just pop into the oven and keep on writing.)

When you are through rolling the enchiladas, divide the hot salsa over the pans. Since it won’t really cover all of the enchiladas, add as much salsa from the other bottle as you need to make sure all enchiladas are really covered with the sauce.

Using the second package of cheese, sprinkle liberally over the enchiladas.

Bake at 350 degrees for about 30 minutes.

Please visit their blogs as well as Favorite Pastimes for a more indepth interview with Lisa.

Favorite Pastimes
Lisa Harris’s Blog
Lena Nelson Dooley’s Blog

Let’s do this again!

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