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Friday 18 March 2016

ℚ Collateral Damage [1] - Gwenan Haines

Today we have the pleasure of meeting up with author to talk about Collateral Damage (, The Wild Rose Press, Inc, 242 pages), a Romantic suspense.

Author Q&A | Synopsis | Teaser | About the Author | Giveaway & Tour Stops

A very warm welcome to Gwenan Haines; thank you for joining us on BooksChatter!

What was the inspiration for Collateral Damage?

"Collateral Damage is partly based on the years I spent working in Washington, D.C. after college and partly based on an idea about how terrorists could put the city—and the country—into jeopardy.

I don’t want to get too political, but it certainly seems that we’ve entered into a more dangerous time, especially in recent months."
How much of yourself is reflected in this book, and how?
"Like Laura Drake, I spent many Friday nights working late on less-than-fascinating projects.  I definitely remember experiencing moments where I wondered just who was living the glamorous Washington life I’d imagined (though some of the glamour came later for me, as it does for Laura).  But I don’t have the same demons to grapple with that Laura does.

A few early beta readers thought her character was too passive in the beginning but I left her character the way it was, in part because she’s on a journey toward the person she’ll ultimately become.  Even at the end of the novel she’s still on that journey—which I think is realistic, considering her past.

Oh, and I never had lots of people trying to kill me either.  So that would definitely qualify as a difference."
The first thing that draws me to a book is its cover. Can you tell us about your cover for Collateral Damage - why you chose that concept and who the artist is.
"I love the cover of Collateral Damage.  Kim Mendoza designed it and I think she did a fabulous job.

I knew I wanted the Capitol Building because that’s where a key scene happens.  And I love the reflection because it emphasizes the duality of politics.  There’s the shining ideal and then there’s the reverse of that ideal, which is so much a part of our nation’s history."
Why should we read Collateral Damage and what sets it apart from the rest? What makes your book unique?

"There are tons of good series out there, so this is a tough question.  But if you’re looking for a fast-paced read that’s set in the capital, you might give Collateral Damage a try."
Can you tell us something quirky about Collateral Damage, its story and characters?
"The restaurant where Laura meets Dalton is named after the real-life Hawk n’ Dove, which reopened again in 2013.  It’s a bar on Pennsylvania Avenue that’s been around for decades and has served senators, Supreme Court justices, Hill staffers, tourists, construction workers and just about every else you can think of.  I used to go there quite a lot when I lived in DC."
The front of the Hawk'n'Dove prior to closure in 2011 The inside of the Hawk'n'Dove prior to closure in 2011 The front of the Hawk'n'Dove after re-opening in 2013 The inside of the Hawk'n'Dove after re-opening in 2013
Above are a couple of images of the Hawk 'n' Dove prior to its closure in 2011 and then again in 2013 when it re-opened.

Who would you recommend Collateral Damage to and what should readers be aware of (any warnings or disclaimers)?

"I’d recommend it to anybody who likes romantic suspense, especially high-stakes stories.  With the election going on, it certainly seems topical (something I didn’t anticipate when I was writing it)."
If you could / wished to turn Collateral Damage into a movie, who would be your dream team?
"I always love that question.

For Laura Drake, I’d pick Elisabeth Moss (from Mad Men and Top of the Lake).

As for Dalton Ross, I’d have to go with Bradley Cooper or maybe Josh Holloway, who I find incredibly sexy.

Laura’s senator boss would definitely be Tom Hanks.  I loved his role as the playboy Congressman in Charlie Wilson’s War and see more than a few similarities between Wilson’s character and Worthington’s.

My producer would have to be none other than Kevin Spacey.  Nobody does Washington’s dark side better than he does."
Nice cast!  BTW, I'd vote for Josh Holloway ;-) (He'd be allowed long hair in Washington D.C., right??!!)

What do you like to write and read about?  Do you stick to a particular genre or do you like to explore different ones?

"So far I’ve mainly written romantic suspense.  Collateral Risk, my most recent effort, is my third novel in that genre.  I also recently completed a prequel novella and a novel for a paranormal shifter series, which I hope will be out in the near future (fingers crossed).  I also write poetry under a different name.  My first book, Vertigo, is on sale this month with Amazon Encore so if you like a good ghost story mixed in with your suspense, you might pick up an e-copy.  Here’s a link.

I’ve always loved romantic suspense—and suspense in general.  If the book’s got a mystery in it, I’m probably going to like it.  My mom started reading Nancy Drew to me when I was really young, so it feels like suspense is in my blood.  But I also read other types of genres.  I like to change it up.  Sort of like switching foods from day to day—sometimes all you want is your basic comfort fare but other times you’ve got an insatiable craving for spicy wings… "
What is your writing process?
"It varies.  I try to write as consistently as possible, but I’ve got a crazy, busy life.  I squeeze in as much as I can during the week and write more on weekends. I  tend to get more done in the spring and summer, especially during vacations (as you might guess, my vacations aren’t exactly relaxing).

I almost always start with an outline but stray from it as the story develops and the characters begin to pull me in different directions.  Sometimes I’ve got to reel them back in and sometimes I let them take me to a new place."
What is in store next?  If Collateral Damage is part of a series, can you give us any hints on future developments...
"It is part of a series.  I contracted the next book, Collateral Risk, last fall and it’s in the editing stages now.  Here’s a blurb, to give you an idea of the plot.
After losing her sister to a serial killer years earlier, scientist Mia Lindgren survives by focusing on the most dangerous viruses known to man.  She’s become adept at shutting herself off from human contact—until her lab partner at the Institute for Research of Infectious Diseases drowns under suspicious circumstances.

Forced to accept the assistance of Nick Doyle, an FBI counter-terrorism expert on leave, she soon realizes someone at the Institute is involved in a deadly deception.  As she and Nick race to find a killer who will stop at nothing to accomplish his version of Armageddon, they can’t ignore their own chemistry. But can Mia truly put the past to rest?
Nick is Dalton Ross’s boss at the FBI and in the second book, I tell his story.  A few of the other characters appear as well, which was fun."
And as a final quirky thing, to get to know you a little bit better... do you have a pet or something that is special to you that you could share with us?
"I’ve got a red-and-white Siberian husky who was born on Halloween.  He’s six years old now but he’s still got a ton of energy and gets into absolutely everything.  The other day he pulled one of the metal end pieces off the radiator, bolted up the stairs and flung it at my feet, just as if he’d returned from a successful hunt.  Here’s a photo of him."
I think I am in love with those eyes... Hello Mick, you gorgeous naughty boy!  Big side rubs and hugs for you!

Thank you so much for sharing Mick with us and for being with us, Gwenan!

"Thank you for having me!"

Collateral Damage
Available NOW!

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1 comment:

Majanka Verstraete said...

Lovely cover! I tend to write most in the weekends too and on holiday... My family isn't exactly too happy with that, though, haha!

Majanka @ I Heart Reading