Author on the Couch: Linda Broday
Today I’m conducting a session with…Linda Broday
GIVEAWAY!!! Linda would like to GIVEAWAY three e-copies of Knight on the Texas Plains.
Enter to #win e-copies of @lbroday's KNIGHT ON THE TEXAS PLAINS. #giveaway #books Click To Tweet
Me: Tell me about an experience that had a profound impact on your life?
Linda: There have been so many – being diagnosed with multiple sclerosis, finally publishing my first book or making the New York Times bestseller list. It was very difficult to choose one. But I think what had the biggest impact on my life was surviving a devastating tornado and the aftermath that followed. The tornado happened in 1979 in Wichita Falls, Texas. It was a mile wide and barreled right through our house. My husband and I barely had time to get our two kids and baby into a hallway. I knew it was going to be bad. We laid on top of the children and I didn’t see any way of making it out alive. The deafening sound, the walls buckling, the roof and debris raining down on top of us. It seemed like we laid there a lifetime with our house disintegrating around us but I know it was probably five minutes or less. When it was over, we dug out from under the mountain of debris. Devastation lay as far as I could see. For all I knew the whole town was gone. The wind had sucked the shoes off my oldest children’s feet but, except for a minor cut on top of my baby’s head, we were all unhurt. We lost every single thing we owned and were homeless for a year, living with first one relative then another. We were dependent on family for even the basic necessities. I learned to appreciate the small things more and be grateful for a place to lay my head. I worried about my older children. They slept fully clothed, including their shoes, every night for about a year, afraid that the tornado would come again and they wanted to be ready. Such a horrible, horrible time of displacement. I came away with a greater sympathy for the homeless because I knew what it was like.
Me: What personality trait of yours helps you most as an author?
Linda: I have this dogged persistence and when I get my teeth in something, I won’t let go or give up. This pushes me forward and provides the drive I need to keep writing. And it’s why I won’t let MS rule my life.
Me: What personality trait of yours hinders you most as an author?
Linda: I’m a perfectionist and more than a little OCD. That need to make things perfect slows me down. I keep going back and going over what I’ve already written instead of moving forward. I’m working to change this and it is getting better.
Me: What was your high point as a writer—a time when you were happiest, on cloud nine, flying high? What happened?
Linda: I had always dreamed of making the New York Times bestseller list. Man, I wanted that. So in 2011, I finally made it with A Texas Christmas. It didn’t matter that it was an anthology. I made it! Talk about being excited. I walked around for months with my feet off the ground.
Me: What was your low point as a writer—a time when you questioned your path, a time when you felt really crappy about your writing? What happened? How did you get over it?
Linda: The lowest point I’ve been was in 2006 following the death of my husband. I just didn’t see how I could go on and the truth is, for the first 8 months I prayed to die every night when I went to sleep. All the words were frozen in my head. I couldn’t even write emails. I stopped living. I’m grateful that I didn’t have a contract to fulfill.
That was a blessing and allowed me to heal without pressure. I had just dropped into a dark pit and climbing out was almighty hard. Slowly, I began to hear the stories in my head again. Then writer friends of mine, Jodi Thomas and Phyliss Miranda, called in June the next year with an offer to join them in writing an anthology for Kensington. I was really scared that I couldn’t deliver but I said yes. We went on to publish five more and then I was strong enough to resume writing full length novels.
Me: Which of your characters are you most like and why?
Linda: I’m most like Jessie Foltry in my latest book Knight on the Texas Plains. She’s faced unbelievable heartache and trials but refuses to let her past rule her life. She has a lot of love she’s aching to give and her strength and dogged determination push her forward and reach for the man whose arms she can’t forget.
Me: Who is your book boyfriend?
Linda: That would have to be Luke Weston in To Marry a Texas Outlaw – Book #3 Men of Legend that comes out in November. Luke is a wounded soul. He killed his first man at fourteen and has been through sheer hell. My heart went out to this man, I ached over each bitter disappointment. He’s an outlaw but he’s trying very hard to change so he won’t bring shame to the family he just learned he has. The need to belong goes bone deep. He yearns to claim the Legend name and accept his birthright but he can’t until he straightens out his life. I see such honor and love in him, hidden beneath his hard exterior. He’s full of so much regret and longing for all he’s been denied. I just love the depth of his heart.
Me: What is your life’s motto? Why does it speak to you?
Linda: Always do your best and when life knocks you down, get right back up. It reminds me to keep trying and pushing forward even when trials come.Always do your best and when life knocks you down, get right back up. @lbroday #AmWriting #AuthorontheCouch Click To Tweet
Me: Tell me a little bit about your Historical Western Romance novel KNIGHT ON THE TEXAS PLAINS!
Linda: Duel McClain has lost everything he’s ever loved: his wife, his son, his sense of self. But when a strange twist of fate—and a poker game he’ll never forget—leaves an innocent little girl in his care, Duel vows to defend his new family to his very last breath. If only he knew a single thing about taking care of babies…
Just as Duel swears his life can’t get any more complicated, a beautiful woman stumbles into the light of his campfire, desperate for help. Jessie Foltry is hungry, tired, and running for her life. She agrees to help Duel care for the child in exchange for his protection, even as she fights to guard her broken heart. But Duel will do whatever it takes to make Jessie see that the Texas plains have more than one kind of knight, and perhaps their salvation is closer than either of them could have dreamed…
Me: Share a little of KNIGHT ON THE TEXAS PLAINS with us.
In the midst of the blaze of color, the tall figure of Duel stood alone, facing the haunting demons that almost had destroyed his will to live. Head bowed, he knelt, then sat cross-legged amid the wildflowers that blanketed the grave. Not strong enough yet, she sensed, to slay the demons. Instead, he sized them up in the true fashion of a gunfighter who eyed his enemies before a duel.
Maybe someday her brave knight would fight that battle—and win. For Marley Rose’s sake, Jessie prayed that day would come soon.
“He’ll love you like a daughter, little one,” she murmured against Marley’s soft black curls. “I know he will, even though his heart still aches with pain.”
“Pa pa.” The child gently patted the windowpane. Her serious expression suggested understanding despite the impossibility of it.
* * *
I love this section of the book because it provides the catalyst for change. Duel says goodbye to his old life here and is finally able to put aside the wife and child he lost. He’s able to focus on being a husband and father to Jessie and the child he rescued. The depth of his heart amazes me.
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Abbie Roads writes dark emotional novels featuring damaged characters, but always gives her hero and heroine a happy ending… after torturing them for three hundred pages. RACE THE DARKNESS and HUNT THE DAWN are available now! SAVING MERCY Book 1 in the Fatal Truth Series is available now.