Hearts Key by Marianne Evans

My guest today is Marianne Evans. Marianne is a happily married mother of two who calls metro Detroit her home. She’s Michigan born and raised, and has penned three contemporary romances for Kensington Publishing and an e-book, a contemporary romance “With This Kiss”, published by The Wild Rose Press.

Thanks so much for dropping by today, Marianne. Let’s talk writing!

Anne - Tell us about your book.

Marianne - My current release with White Rose Publishing is HEARTS KEY. Hearts Key is book 4 of my award winning Woodland Series, and I fell in love with these two characters when they were introduced in Hearts Surrender, book 2 of the series. Tyler Brock and Amy Maxwell have been through a lot to be together:

Life hasn't been kind to Amy Maxwell. Once the effervescent leader of the pack, her marriage should have been perfect. Instead, she escaped with nothing but the clothes on her back and her daughter, Pyper.

Tyler Brock is dazzling. The once shy teen has evolved into a powerhouse in Christian music, and when he returns to
Woodland
for a benefit concert, Amy can’t believe he is as faithful and tender as ever. He even manages to touch the heart of a doubtful Pyper.

But, Amy can’t escape her own self-doubt, and she questions the wisdom of her heart when it comes to the charismatic musician who is so different now, yet so much the same.

Can the key to their hearts unlock a lifetime of love?

Anne – What a powerful plot! Would you share an excerpt with us?

Marianne – I thought you’d never ask!

Hearts Key Excerpt:

Amy took a deep breath. It was time to move forward, and act like the friend she had always been. She made progress toward approaching Tyler, watching as he shook hands with members of his crew and received enthusiastic hugs of support. Then in came Rebecca. He saw her immediately and grinned while she made a dash for his ready embrace. She gave a happy shout as he lifted her up, and spun her in a full circle.

“You were great,” she enthused, her voice touched by the cadence of the south. “Honestly, what a show!”

“Inspired, wasn’t it, Becs? It feels so good to be home!”

Rebecca pecked both his cheeks and smiled into his eyes. Amy’s heart sank. His dynamic backup singer then greeted others around them and dissolved into the crowd of tour staffers.

In that instant, her mature, straightforward intentions vaporized. Hiking up her purse and camera strap, Amy kept a tight hold on them both as she turned to leave. She took a few steps toward the exit.

“Seriously?”

Amy froze at the sound of the smooth and deep voice that carried with it just a touch of the South. She closed her eyes, and she trembled. Bad.

“You were seriously gonna leave without sayin’ hello to me?”

She couldn’t pull in a proper breath. Her heart skittered wildly. Red-hot heat crawled up the skin of her neck and ignited her cheeks, melting and burning in one fell swoop.

Bravely she turned around, her lips pressed tight, though she fought through it all to offer a tentative smile. “Hey, Tyler.”

It was the best she could manage. His eyes were unspeakably gentle and tender. His attitude of warmth so typical of the Tyler she had known, once upon a life. Amy welcomed that fact, and at the same time, she was swept away by just looking at him.

“Hey, Amy,” he greeted softly. His smile bloomed when he took her hands. A beat later, he drew her in for a long, tight hug that left her aching. He felt so hard, and strong. So wonderful. A lump formed fast in her throat—a bit of mourning, she supposed, for all she missed.

“I, ah, didn’t want to interfere or anything.” As soon as the words crossed her lips, she realized how lame they sounded.

Tyler kissed her cheek, and Amy went a bit dizzy. A bit weak at the knees. “You couldn’t interfere if you wanted to.” He leaned back and drew a fingertip against her chin; he looked deep look into her eyes. “I’ve missed you.”

Anne – Thank you. I want to read more. J What do you enjoy most about writing?

Marianne - Those moments when the scene comes together in my heart and my head, and flows right out of my fingertips into the computer! There is truly no euphoria to match it.

Anne – Let’s visit the extreme opposite of the scale. What part do you loathe?

Marianne - The moment when I receive edits back from my editor (whom I adore beyond anything!) Once I actually dive into them, it’s not bad at all, but every “red mark” feels like I missed the mark, and I always have to move myself past that idea because that’s the devil talkin’!!!

Anne - How many rejections have you received?

Marianne - Oh, Anne, I’ve received plenty. In fact, I’ve stacked them all up, thrown a nice linen cloth over them and they make a fine little end table in my living room….  All kidding aside, rejection stings so much, and 99.9% of all authors experience it. My most memorable “rejection” came not in a letter but in a face-to-face meeting with an agent who told me, quite condescendingly, “Well, at least you’ll be able to say you wrote and completed a book. That’s something.” I held it together until I left the meeting room, then I ducked into the bathroom and burst into tears. From there, I decided there was no way I wouldn’t pursue the call on my heart, and prove her wrong. Eight books later, I think I’ve had the last word in that particular encounter.  J 

Anne – Agreed! What activity (cause, charity, or organization) consumes your time when you’re away from the keyboard?

Marianne - I enjoy volunteering my time at the Capuchin Soup Kitchen in downtown Detroit as well as Grace Centers of Hope, a homeless shelter/rehab compound in Pontiac. Both causes are very dear to my heart, and I consider it an honor to work with them.

Anne - Quick. Your five favorites – author, actor, movie, song, quote. 

Marianne – Author: Karen Kingsbury, Actor: Humphrey Bogart, Movie: Casablanca and Fireproof are old and new favorites respectively, Song: Slow Fade by Casting Crowns, Quote: ‘Effort Equals Results’ – Roger Penske

Anne – Where can readers reach you online?

Marianne – On my website www.marianneevans.com, blog www.marianneevans.blogspot.com
And on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/#!/pages/Marianne-Evans/308711716744

Anne – Thank you so much, Marianne, for dropping by and sharing your story, both Hearts Key and what makes you the writer you are! I wish you every success.

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