Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Meet Claire Gem AKA Frances Susanne Brown

Posted by Susan J Berger on 2:30:00 AM with 7 comments
 Meet another dual identity author. Frances Susanne Brown is releasing her contemporary paranormal romance, Phantom Traces as Claire Gem

Claire/Frances, please tell us a little about yourself.
I’m a native of New York, but have lived in Florida, Texas, North Carolina, and now in Massachusetts. My husband of 36 years is my inspiration for writing all those happy-ever-afters, and together we raised three children. Two years ago, my daughter made me a grandma. By day, I work in scientific research at Tufts University. After hours, I write.

I love firsts, so tell me about the moment when you found you’d made your first sale.
My first sale was my memoir, which I’ve been told is one of the hardest genres to sell. When I got the email from the editor of High Hill Press saying they loved my story and wanted to publish it, I danced and squealed through my tears. The memoir, Maternal Threads, is a mother-daughter story with a mystery, and will be coming out before Mother’s Day this year.

If it isn’t too nosy . . . (well of course it is!) How about the first time you kissed your true love?
Our first kiss was in my driveway in a car he borrowed, while he was wearing a pair of shoes two sizes too big! He’d come straight from work, and didn’t have clean clothes to change into, so he borrowed them – and the car – from his best friend, who later became our Best Man at the wedding.
I asked Claire/ for a picture and she sent me this.
 This one was taken of my husband and me on our first cruise when my sons were only months old...they will be 30 on April 1st.They were April's Fools babies. Twins too. 
Gorgeous picture! You look like a heroine I want to read about. Twins? Wow. I used to want twins . . . until I had my first son. 
Other than your own, who are your favorite (heroes/heroines/writers) in your genre?
My all time favorite contemporary romance author is Kristan Higgins – I love her humor and wit, and have actually been in danger of driving off the road laughing while listening to her books on audio! I also love Robyn Carr, Susan Elizabeth Phillips, and Susanna Kearsley.
You and I have very similar tastes. I would add Jayne Ann Krentz in all her guises to your list and Lynn Kurland. Robyn will be back on my blog this Sunday for 2 days. And Kristan was on my blog last October. I am going to look up Susanna Kearsley.

What is the most exciting moment, so far, in your writing career?
Just last week, after sending out press releases about my newly released novel, Phantom Traces, I received a phone call from a reporter in Lenoir, N.C. – that’s where the book is set. He did a phone interview and printed it on the front page of the Lenoir News Topic on Feb. 17th. Squeeee!!!
I would be squeeeing too!
What is your favorite pastime, other than writing?
I love to read (of course!) and listen to books on audio.
The paranormal enchants me, and the only two hours of TV I watch every week are when Ghost Adventures airs. (Okay, so Zak Bagans is a little hot).
And, of course, happy hour with my daughter when she visits.

What’s your snack of choice while writing?
I don’t tend to snack much, but I do love a nice glass of wine.

Any advice for new writers just starting out?1. Read every book in your chosen genre you can get your hands on. Study them like a textbook.
2. Join a critique group. There are plenty available online, and the help I got from the one I belong to was responsible for my first fiction book sale. Giving feedback teaches as much as getting it.
3. Don’t give up. You’re not a devoted writer until you can paper at least one wall of your office with rejection slips.

What genre or genres do you write?

I write contemporary romance, contemporary w/paranormal elements (I’m a sucker for a ghost story), and women’s fiction.
If you like women's fiction, try Sarah Addison Allen who writes magical realism and A gift of Ghosts by Sarah Wynde. (Bookaholic here and we seem to share similar tastes.)

Tell us about your latest release. 

Phantom Traces is romance with a ghostly twist. Set in the fictional town of Caldwell, N.C., it is the contemporary story of Abigail Stryker, a young librarian struggling to revive the antiquated and reportedly haunted Harvey Library. A pipe-smoking ghost has suddenly begun hurling books at anyone he doesn’t like, and if the haunting isn’t stopped, the library will be shut down.

Abby enlists the help of history professor Jack Wood to figure out what has stirred the spirit of the library’s founder, and why he’s still trapped within its walls after over 100 years. In so doing, they uncover a tragic, 19th century tale of love, and find one of their own.

Trailer here: http://bit.ly/1EIj4IY Great trailer. I am so intrigued
What’s your current WIP?
I’m presently working on another contemporary romance/ghost story called “Electricity.” It takes place in an abandoned mental asylum. The hero and heroine work with a team of electricians who are refurbishing the building, until strange occurrences derail their plans – and of course, throw them into each other’s arms.
And finally, where can we find you?
Twitter: @gemwriter
Facebook: http://on.fb.me/1BhmfCj
Goodreads: http://bit.ly/17zCJwY
Thank you, Claire for being here. Claire is giving away a copy of her new eBook, Phantom Traces to one lucky reader. Hurry. This contest will end midnight Feb 28th because I forgot Robyn Carr is on my blog on March 1st.
a Rafflecopter giveaway


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