24 May '13

Authors After Dark 2013 Spotlight : Heather Long Answers Some Questions

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 First question we always ask; why do you choose to write romance?
I could say something cheesy like romance chose me, but the truth is I’m like every other little girl out there who grew up weaned on fairy tales about true love and the Harlequin romances my grandmother read to me. I love the idea of love and I love the way love can bring people together. As an adult, I recognize that fairy tales don’t happen–you have to work for it and that’s why I write romance, because life is what happens when you aren’t paying attention and most of my characters weren’t looking for it when it found them.
Who is your favourite romance hero/heroine of all time?
Um. Don’t ask a hard question. I think my current favorite is going to be Damon Salvatore on The Vampire Diaries with a close tie being Oliver Queen on Arrow. In Damon’s case, this is a man who’s every decision and choice for 160+ years has been driven by love–the love he had for Katherine, the love for his brother, and now the love he has for Elena. He’s always lost in this game too and never thought he was worthy of being loved. When Elena chose him in the last episode of Season 4, Damon’s look of incredulity broke my heart–because he finally got the girl, someone finally chose him and I think it’s a powerful statement how far he was willing to go and how much he did for her even when he didn’t believe he could have her for real. That to me is love.
Oliver Queen is a close second because this spoiled rich kid had a great life and never appreciated it, he had a fantastic woman her love scared him to death and he sabotaged it brutally. Flash forward five years after being stranded in hell on an island with mercs and fighting for his life and he’s back and the thing that kept him going all those years was love for Laurel. But he knows she may never forgive him and he’s made his peace with that, he’s another that is willing to just love her and let her have her life, but they are constantly drawn together and for them love is messy, and complicated and painful–and very visceral.  So yeah, those are my two favorites right now.
What is the most swoon-worthy scene that you have written?
Oh, I can think of two–there’s a moment in No Regrets, No Surrender when Logan tells Jazz that she can push him away, fight him, hit him–it didn’t matter. He wasn’t going anywhere. And then in my most recent release, What Part of Marine Don’t You Understand–there’s this moment where the first kiss happens that just kind of knocked my socks off when I wrote it. 

Matt McCall’s struggles to reintegrate into civilian life have been an ongoing battle for the better part of two years. Daily group sessions and weekly one-on-ones have only allowed him to grow so far. Twice he’s returned to his home state of Indiana and twice, he retreated to Mike’s Place. Uncertain of where he belongs in the world, he silently battles depression. The unexpected gift of Jethro, a black Labrador Retriever, perks his spirit…and a chance meeting in the park gives him a precious gift…

 

Aspiring country singer, Naomi Sparks, comes from a long line of Marines, so she knows all about sacrifice and struggle. When her Congressman brother asks her to visit Mike’s Place on his behalf, she discovers a real opportunity to make a difference. And meeting former Marine Matt McCall inspires her with the real challenge of discovering love and daring heroes who takes risks. Writing music has never been so sweet….

 

Can one woman who believes in him really heal the wounds in this Marine’s heart?

You have written a lot of books with Marine’s as the romantic Hero. Why do they make such good ones?
They are tough, hardcore men and women who put country and service above themselves. They are first in to situations I want no part of, they put their lives on the line and no just how ephemeral the chances are they may go home whole and intact, but they don’t regret their service. While that’s a sweeping generalization, these are still people, they still have vulnerabilities that can hamstring them and I have always loved heroes–and these are heroes who wear dog tags, not capes and they don’t expect a thank you or a parade, they just want to protect their way of life for their families and come home to them.
If you had to give yourself a tagline, what would it be?
Currently it’s Rediscovering romance one couple at a time. But the sassy answer is it’s – Love doesn’t come with a guarantee.
Thanks so much for having me! I’ve attached the cover and excerpt and blurb for Matt’s book which is available now!
And you can get all the available links right now here:
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About the Author
Heather Long lives in North Texas with her family and their menagerie of animals. As a child, Heather skipped picture books and enjoyed the Harlequin romance novels by Penny Jordan and Nora Roberts that her grandmother read to her. Heather believes that laughter is as important to life as breathing and that the Easter Bunny, the Tooth Fairy and Santa Claus are very real. In the meanwhile, she is hard at work on her next novel.

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