Sunday, August 9, 2009

Author Diane Craver interviews Whitney Taylor Benson, the main character in her contemporary romance, WHITNEY IN CHARGE...

Welcome to one of my characters from my new release. Before I get started with the interview, I want to mention that WHITNEY IN CHARGE is available in e-book format at, Amazon, and other online places. If you want to know more about my writing, feel free to post questions in the comment section.

Physical Description: Whitney is 5'9", dark brown shoulder length hair, green eyes. Education: Whitney left her hometown in Ohio to attend college in New York City.

Diane: Whitney, would you like a cup of coffee before we start the interview?

Whitney: Yes, I would. Black, please.

Diane: (pours a steaming cup of coffee) I think it's interesting you moved back to Cornett after living in New York. Do you miss the big city?

Whitney: Thank you. (takes cup from Diane) I loved producing the morning show, The Bold News, but when my mother became ill, I decided it was more important to return home to take care of her.

Diane: Do you ever think about returning to New York?

Whitney: (shakes her head) It has too many sad memories. I was happily married to Rob Benson, and he died while reporting the war news in Iraq.

Diane: (leans closer to Whitney and touches her arm) I'm so sorry. He was a wonderful reporter.
Whitney: A couple of months later, I learned my mother was dying from cancer so I focused all my energy on taking care of her. Being close to my family has been helpful. I see my sisters, Shannon and Regan a lot and their families.

Diane: Are your sisters younger or older than you?

Whitney: Both are older. I'm the baby in the family.

Diane: (smiles at Whitney) I am, too. That has advantages and disadvantages.

Whitney: (rolls her lovely green eyes) Tell me about it.

Diane: There's a big age difference in my case. How about you? Are your sisters close to your age or quite a bit older?

Whitney: My oldest sister, Shannon, is eight years older and Regan is only three years older. I'm 31. (she sighs) They just signed me up to go skydiving. I told them no but I'm sure they will keep trying to get me to go.

Diane: I guess they want you to experience something that's fun but different. Although it doesn't sound like fun to me. Do your sisters like to go skydiving?

Whitney: (shakes her head) They've never gone. A lot of the skydivers are male so they thought it'd be a good way for me to meet guys. But I told them I'm capable of finding my own dates. I'm just not sure I'm ready to meet someone new right now.

Diane: Even though skydiving seems like a bit much, that's nice your sisters care so much about you.

Whitney: Concentrating on my life helps them to stop thinking about our mother dying. She just died recently.

Diane: Maybe you three should go on a cruise.

Whitney: (laughs) They made me go on a cruise. Shannon and Regan thought it'd be romantic and I'd meet some hot single guy. But there were mostly couples on the ship.

Diane: (grins at Whitney) They do seem determined to find you someone.

Whitney: I should move on with my life, but they also need another purpose to get closure to our mother’s death. (She sips her coffee with a thoughtful expression.) I want to do something with my sisters. We need to focus on something new and fresh.

Diane: What about going into business together? That would definitely keep them busy.

Whitney: (looks excited) Hey, that's a great suggestion. That might work for us. And I need something to do with my free time since I don't plan on returning to New York.

Diane: Who's your best friend?

Whitney: I'm close to my sisters so I think of them as friends. But Molly's my best friend. She was my maid of honor. (a sad expression crosses her face) Actually she introduced me to my husband. I need to call Molly sometime. She wants me to visit her in New York but I hate flying.

Diane: Do you have any other fears?

Whitney: (is quiet for a moment) I'm afraid to love again.

Diane: When the time's right, you'll be able to let go of the past.

Whitney: I hope so. I loved being married. I just regret we never had children.

Diane: Children are blessings. And you're young yet so you can easily have children someday.

Whitney: At least I have two nieces and a nephew to enjoy now. That's been a definite benefit to moving back to Ohio.

Diane: What is the one thing you'd love to learn how to do?

Whitney: (grins) I'd love to learn how to play the drums.

Diane: Cool. Do you come from a musical family?

Whitney: (shakes her head) No, but I did play clarinet in the high school band. And I sang in the church choir and did a few solos in plays.

Diane: I can see you playing the drums. One more question before you leave. What is your favorite dessert?

Whitney: (answers quickly) I love cheesecake.

Diane: Cheesecake sounds yummy. Thank you so much, Whitney, for stopping by for our chat. Good luck with starting a new business.

Whitney: Thanks for having me. I've enjoyed it.

TV producer Whitney Benson is tired of her older sisters’ attempts to fix her up with every single male they meet. Shannon and Regan cross the line when they arrange for her to go skydiving with the simple excuse that more guys like to float in the air than women. Whitney meets two eligible bachelors, Jack and Ben, who constantly battle for her affection. Which one will she choose? Both men make Whitney realize, even a heart shattered by her husband’s death, can once again be made whole. But did she have to fall off a cliff to learn that?


Whitney and Shannon joined Regan at the door.

“I thought Nate was a hottie, but this guy’s even better looking,” Regan said in a raspy whisper.

“Hey Regan, you think we can get a refund from the guy at the skydiving place?” Shannon asked while gazing at the new man outside. “Who needs to go looking?”

“When did he move in?”

Whitney knew better than to comment too much on her new neighbor. Her sisters might take it upon themselves to rush over and tell him that she was available. But crap, did he have to be shirtless and have broad shoulders? If he always worked in his yard like that, she’d have a hard time not staring at him.

“I think it was last week when I noticed the moving truck. Would you two married women stop drooling?” She took another glance and he waved. “Great. He sees us watching him.”

Regan raised her eyebrows. “Since you haven’t mentioned him to us, I guess you haven’t met this gorgeous guy yet?”

“This is the first time I’ve seen him,” Whitney admitted.

A small, black-haired boy, ran from behind the house. That answered the question whether he was a family man or not.

“I wonder if his son is Lily’s age,” Regan pondered.

“Don’t forget little boys usually have mothers.” She better remind her sisters of this fact before they made wedding plans for Mr. Hottie and her.

Shannon moved away from the screen. “If there isn’t a wife, you’re wonderful with kids.”

“First Nate the Skydiver, then Jack the Paramedic…is my new neighbor now Bachelor Number Three?”

“Let’s find out if there is a wife around.” Regan pulled on Whitney’s arm. “Come on. We better hurry. He’s pushing the lawn mower into the shed.”

“I’ll go. But you two have to quit acting like I’m a hopeless old spinster. I managed to get married once, and I don’t need help in getting dates again.”

Shannon rolled her eyes. “You haven’t gone on any, have you?”

“No, and the reason is because I’m not ready to date.”

Shannon opened her mouth to argue, but stopped mid-breath at the ringing of her cell phone. Whitney sighed in relief. She shouldn’t have to elaborate on why she wasn’t going to date. Not now and maybe she’d never date anyone. Losing Rob had been too painful.

Shannon glanced at her caller ID. “I’m sure you two can fill me in later about the new man. I better get this. It’s Caitlyn.”

Opening the screen door, Whitney said, “Let’s get this over with. At this rate, we’ll never go into business together.”

Regan and Whitney crossed the yard to the neighbor’s. As they approached, the boy stopped kicking his ball and said, “Hi.”

Whitney smiled at him. “Hi. You have a good kick.”

The boy looked at them carefully. “My daddy knocks people out. You two should be easy. The fat ones give him problems.”

Regan laughed. “Is he a boxer?”

She heard a chuckle and turned to see Mr. Hottie ─ or ‘Daddy’ as the case may be ─ walking around the corner of the house. Whitney took a step to meet him halfway and extended her hand. “Hello. We’re neighbors. I’m Whitney Benson. And this is my sister, Regan Dunn.” She grinned. “And please don’t knock us out.”

As he walked toward them, she noticed how thick his short-cropped hair looked and she liked his warm brown eyes. He had a great tan. She wondered if he worked outside in construction or something.

“I’m Ben Spencer,” he said as he took her hand in a firm grip, not shaking it but just holding it. “This is my son Adam. I guess I better work on teaching Adam to say anesthesiologist. And Adam, I never said fat patients but said overweight ones are harder and more risks are involved for surgery.”

“That’s a relief. I’d hate to think you were a violent person living next door to my single sister.”

Whitney was going to throttle her sister! How could Regan be so obvious? She hurried to speak, hoping to keep Regan from saying something more embarrassing, like asking him if he was single. “I hope you like living here. It’s a nice neighborhood.”

“I liked our other house better,” Adam said with a pout, bouncing the ball off the ground.
Whitney nodded. “It takes time to get used to a new place. I still miss where I used to live.”

“How old are you, Adam?” Regan asked. “I have a daughter Lily and you two might like to play together.”

“I’m six.”

“Lily’s six too,” Regan said. “You’ll have to meet her. Do you go to Clark Elementary?”

Ben ruffled Adam’s hair. “I’m having Adam finish first grade at his old school since it’s close to the end of the year.”

Why didn’t he put a shirt on? The sweat glistened off his strong muscled upper body. She was as bad as her sisters wondering if he had a wife or not. “I guess we better let you get back to your yard work. Maybe sometime we can have you, your wife, and Adam over for a barbecue.”

“That’s a good idea,” Regan said. “Adam can meet Lily so he’ll know someone when he starts the new school next year.”

Adam glanced at his dad and Ben patted his son on the back. “I’m divorced. Adam’s mom lives in Seattle.”

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Releasing Today: Haunting Beauty

A mysterious stranger . . .
Danni Jones believed everything about her past-that she was an unwanted child abandoned by her mother. That she was an outcast set apart by her clairvoyance. That she was alone. Then came the stranger. Dangerously seductive Sean Ballagh appears out of nowhere with a startling story that will challenge everything Danni thought was true.

A lost woman . . .
He claims that Danni's family has been searching for her ever since she disappeared twenty years ago. He's come to bring her home to Ireland. But Danni fears there's more to his story than he dares to reveal. And the only way to find out is by following Sean back in time, to a forgotten past, to a world where nothing is what it seems.

A terrifying legacy . . .
Now, in a land where the mystical and the occult are as vivid as the emerald fields, Danni must rewrite history to save her family, to fight a force more evil than she ever imagined, and to reunite with the one man she was destined for-or live forever in time as nothing more than an ethereal memory, a tragic and haunting beauty.

Order a new* copy HAUNTING BEAUTY by August 30, 2009 and I'll enter you into a grand prize drawing for books, merchandise and other great stuff. To enter, email me a copy of your proof of purchase and you will be entered to win $100 dollar gift card to either Borders, Barnes & Noble or (your choice of one) AND 20 books--many autographed by author-- AND a Haunting Beauty tote, coffee mug and mouse pad and a photo album!
(*must be a new copy to qualify)