November 3, 2013

Contemporary: Finding Zoe | Interview @Diane_Saxon #RLFblog

Finding Zoe 
Diane Saxon, welcome back to Romance Lives Forever. Let's talk about your book, Finding Zoe, Book #3 in your Atlantic Divide Series. 

Genre: Contemporary Romance
Publisher: Liquid Silver Books
Cover artist: Lyn Taylor
Length: 50,000 words
Heat rating: Spicy
Returning to England after eleven years, Cormack Blunt stumbles across the woman who he thought was lost to him forever. The woman he had never forgotten. And he realizes that the sweet young girl he once knew has managed to keep a secret from him.
Zoe Chance can't believe that the young man she loved eleven years before, now a famous movie star and action hero, has turned up out of the blue and wants answers. Not only that, he wants her son too.
Forced to confront him, she realizes that it isn't a fight to keep her son that causes the problem but the fight to keep her own heart.
Buy links:
Liquid Silver Books
Diane Saxon Buy the Books
What are your main characters' names, ages, and occupations?
Cormack Blunt/Mac Swann -- Age 32, He's the same guy, Movie Star name and real name; Black Hair, Brown Eyes; Action Hero Movie Star
Zoe Chance -- Age 28, Red Hair, Strange Green Eyes; Veterinary Surgeon


Almost eleven years had passed since he'd been there. Right at this very spot in the heart of Shropshire, England. Eleven years and his heart soared as he stood at the top of Major's Leap on Wenlock Edge, careful not to get too close to the bluff in case his fear of heights got the better of him. He breathed in the fresh English air, filled his lungs with it.
He gazed over the acres of rich land. He'd forgotten the contrasts of color in the bright English countryside. The lush bottle-green of the trees against the bright emerald and pale jade of the square fields with their acres of crops swaying opulent and thick, contrasted with handkerchiefs of vivid yellow rapeseed fields sitting comfortably next to the mud-brown of the newly plowed areas. Forest-green hedgerows divided the land, populated with poppies splattered randomly over the landscape like droplets of blood.
As the warm English summer wind buffeted him, he closed his eyes and wondered why it had taken him so long to come back.
"Mr. Blunt?"
He knew why.
"Mr. Blunt, sir…are you ready?"
It was because of her.
"Mr. Blunt…"
"Yes. I'm ready."
Opening his eyes, he sighed. He took a moment longer to scan the landscape, tracking the clear, pale blue sky; he drew his gaze across the horizon. He smiled as he recognized the rise of The Wrekin in the distance and remembered her telling him the tale of some giant dumping a shovel of dirt on the plains of Shropshire, which made the hill.
With a wry smile he turned away, saddened for a moment as he wondered what had become of her. From time to time she still managed to make his heart ache.
He turned away from the view, from the memories, from the dull throb in his chest.
He'd made them all park in the small, rutted parking lot. His entire entourage, nineteen of them, had trudged up the rough terrain of Wenlock Edge just so he could take a look at the view. Like he'd looked at the view so many times—so long ago.
"Are we ready to rumble?"
He glanced around at the expectant faces, the puzzled looks, and the concern. He flicked his eyes down to their inadequate footwear and guilt tugged at him.
"Let's go. Where did you say we were staying?" Businesslike now, he strode off with purpose toward the parking lot, sparing a quick look at the donkeys on the way down. There'd been donkeys there eleven years ago.
"Shrewsbury. The Prince Rupert."
He hadn't been important enough to stay in a hotel the last time he'd been there. It had been a trailer in the middle of a field. He'd loved it.
They reached the parking lot, and Mac looked at the vehicles, hesitated.
"I'll tell you what. You all go and get settled and I'll follow. There's another couple of sights I want to see."
"We'll come with you, Mr. Blunt."
"No." He glanced around and saw the relief on their faces. "I'll take the Mercedes. See you back at the hotel."
Stupid to have taken the low-slung sports car. He needed a four-by-four to get down the rough, dirt track. He could hear the undercarriage crunch and grind. If he wrecked the car, he was going to have to call them to rescue him, and he really didn't want to explain he was just having a trip down a potholed memory lane.
He let the car shudder and bump slowly to a stop beside a closed five-bar gate. He remembered the enormous farmhouse straight ahead with its own cast-iron gates. Looked like they had been converted to electric openings now. Fourteen bedrooms in the house, if he remembered correctly. He looked at it fondly, thinking whoever had bought it had looked after it. The neatly manicured lawns spoke of care; the stone statues of money.
Stepping out of the car, he walked around the hood to lean his arms on the gate and stare into the distance. The gamekeeper's cottage, with its three bedrooms and a little jetty extending out into the small lake, looked as though it had also fallen on good times. It had been empty before.
Curious to get a closer look, he opened the gate and walked through. The dirt track was dry in the heat of the summer sun, and dust kicked up as he walked.
Roses ran riot in deep pink and white over the outside of the cottage. Cute, typically English. The door stood open. Reluctant to intrude but just as reluctant to withdraw, he hesitated and peered into the kitchen to find it empty. His gaze scanned down to the all too familiar jetty.
And there she was. As though it were yesterday. He tilted his head to one side. It couldn't be. Her vibrant red hair shimmered in the bright sunlight. Believing he was dreaming, he took a few steps closer, paused. She reclined, languid, her back against the end post of the jetty, legs outstretched, face turned up to the heavens, eyes closed. Convinced now he must be hallucinating, his attention wandered to the one item unfamiliar to his memory. A glass of white wine was placed by her side, her fingers curled around the stem.
His heart lurched as he narrowed his eyes and stared. He knew it was his imagination. She'd moved years ago, and in any case, she looked exactly the same; she'd never aged. Mystified, he walked toward her. As he stepped onto the jetty, it protested at his weight with a loud, shuddering groan.
Her eyes shot open, her head whipped around, shock streaked across her face, and her body jerked and floundered. With a shriek and a loud splash, the object of his imagination fell off the edge of the jetty and disappeared beneath the surface of the clear blue water.


Which character in your current book do you think readers will like the most? Why?
Mac. Definitely Mac. He was introduced in my very first story, which I never had published. I absolutely loved him and he kept working his way into my mind, but it wasn't until I wrote Bad Girl Bill that I realized what Mac wanted to do. He is so human and vulnerable even though he's a tough, gorgeous action hero movie star. And he makes me laugh.
Why do you write?
Because for years I've had characters in my mind who weave stories and sometimes don't let me sleep, so I started to let them have their say.
When you write, what things do you want close at hand? (Coffee, water, chocolate... pictures of gorgeous hunks for inspiration...?)
Coffee. Coffee. Eeeks – coffee.
I hide the chocolate away. That's for when I finish writing as a reward.
Pictures of gorgeous hunks don't really inspire me, they might give me a little thrill when someone posts them on my FB, but my heroes are already in my mind.
When you're not writing, what would we find you doing?
I never stop. I'm a busy person, but I love everything I do (apart from ironing)
When I'm not walking my dog, feeding chickens, kittens, and a big ginger cat,
you'll find me in the kitchen baking, making jams, chutneys and cooking or in the garden, presently picking damsons, and apples. We've had a bumper crop this year, hence all the jam making etc.
But there is nothing better than settling down at the end of the day with a good book and a glass of red wine.
Are you a plotter, or do you prefer to make it up on the spur of the moment?
I find this a difficult question, because I had no idea, until I sent my first book to the publishers that I was supposed to plot.
Plot, you say?
People asked me, do you have a story board, sticky notes all over the wall? And I panicked and thought – "I'm doing it wrong – how do I put this right?" I ran around like the proverbial headless chicken until I realized I do plot. I develop a story in my head and instead of writing copious notes and confusing myself with little bits of paper, I tend to sit and write the entire skeleton of the story in one go. Then I pad it out, add layers.
I take my Dalmatian for a couple of hours walk each day, and normally come back with a scene in my mind which I try to get down straight away.
Any advice for new authors?
Love what you do, and be BRAVE. Submit your manuscript. I have heard of so many authors who have completed manuscripts and are too scared to send them. Do it, take the chance.
What aspect of your life do you write into your books?
Humour. I laugh so much and real life is very funny.

Previous Books

Loving Lydia, Atlantic Divide Series, Book 1
Bad Girl Bill, Atlantic Divide Series, Book 2

Books Coming Soon

Flight of Her Life

Find Me Here


  1. A very interesting interview, Diane. I love this story it kept me entertained all the way through.

    1. Thanks for being here, Daisy!

    2. Thank you so much for dropping by Daisy, and I'm thrilled you enjoyed Finding Zoe.

  2. Great excerpt Diane! Love it! Just one question - do you share the jam?

    1. Minds of a feather... ;) I wondered the same thing.

    2. Heh heh, yes with neighbours, family, friends, I can't give it away fast enough, I have a glut of it this year. You're most welcome, if you want to come and get some :)

  3. Your excerpt made me smile - as ususal & you were your usual witty & charming self.....Mmmmm

    1. Thanks for popping in, Heather!

    2. Heather thank you for popping in, I love a little suspense and a lot humour. I hope you enjoy.


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