Welcome to an author friend from The Wild Rose Press.
Tell us a bit about you and your background.
I’m a freelance journalist. I started out working as a reporter for a weekly newspaper and when I moved away I branched out on my own. But many years ago, when I was in university, I had a naïve plan to write a romance to finance a career as a ‘real’ writer. My manuscript was rejected, not surprisingly. Since then I’ve become a little more humble and maybe even a little wiser and I thought I’d give it another shot. It’s worked out much better this time.
What’s the logline that describes your writing?
Barbara Burke’s characters fall in love with their brains, not their bodies.
What are your hobbies away from the computer?
I like to hike and sail, which makes me sound all outdoorsy and that couldn’t be farther from the truth. Really I like to read and do cryptic crossword puzzles and drink red wine.
Do you start a new story with the plot or characters first?
Heads or tails? You can’t have just one side of a coin.
Is your writing style planned or freestyle?
Again, I can’t pick just one. I start off with an idea of plot and character and then see how they negotiate their way to the end of the story.
If you use music while writing, name your favorite types.
I need absolute silence or I’ll start singing along (even if it’s an instrumental piece) and that can completely change the mood of what I’m writing.
What is the starting point for research—story concept or when you get stuck while writing?
There is no starting point for research. I’m doing it constantly.
Have you traveled to any locations that appear in your books?
Yes, but I’ve travelled to a lot more places that were the setting for books I’ve loved over the years.
Can you share a tip about what you do when you get stuck in creating a story?
I don’t get stuck creating a story. I get stuck in the dreaded middle bit where you know where the story came from and you know where it’s going, but it seems to be spending all its time playing solitaire instead of progressing.
What was your biggest surprise in the editing/revision process?
I don’t think there were any. Everyone needs an editor. EVERYONE.
Describe a normal writing day (or period, if you have other employment obligations).
Write a few lines. Check email. Write a few lines. Move the cat off the keyboard (and check email). Write a few lines. Have lunch. Write a few lines. Move the cat from in front of the computer screen (and check email). Et cetera.
Do you write in a genre other than the one of this release?
I have all kinds of unfinished novels and I’m a freelance journalist. I get antsy if I’m spending all my time writing fiction and I get antsy if I’m spending all my time writing non-fiction.
What’s your dream vacation destination?
It depends on the time of year, but generally speaking it would be somewhere with lots of history, outdoor cafes and a beach.
Are you a pet person? If so, what do you have?
Yes. At the moment three cats, a snake, a tankful of fish and a horse.
What do you hope readers gain from your stories?
A feeling of satisfaction at the end. I don’t write insightful or deep. I’m just trying to entertain, not enlighten.
When ARP warden Molly sees a light shining through the darkness of London on a cold winter’s night in the middle of the blitz she’s infuriated with the careless American who struck it. Doesn’t he know there’s a war on?
Guy’s just trying to find his way through a maze of unlit streets. He’s very sorry and Molly reluctantly forgives him. When he accompanies her on her nightly rounds the two learn about each other, themselves and whether it’s really possible to fall in love in only one night – especially when there’s no guarantee of tomorrow.
They stood silently. Slowly her hand came out of her pocket to rest on the top of his arm. The other one reached up to gently touch his cheek. He could see the glint of her eyes, those impossible brown eyes, as she gazed up at him gravely.
“Are you going to kiss me?” Her cool British voice gave him no inclination of how she felt.
“Is that what you want?” Guy wasn’t sure what he would do if the answer was no.
She didn’t reply, and he took that for her answer. Quickly he undid the clasp on her helmet and pulled it away, letting it drop to the ground without a thought. Free of its weight, she tilted her face up, her lips dark and full in the black night, and settled more deeply into his grasp.
It was invitation enough.
He bent his head toward her.
Her lips were soft and cold. Willing, but tentative. Her arms circled his neck, and he pulled her to him more tightly, body to body despite the thick winter clothing they both wore.
The night suddenly got a lot warmer.
The kiss didn’t last long. It was too sweet to be sustained, and they were too new to the sensation to change it into something more. As soon as Guy sensed Molly withdrawing, he broke it off.
But he didn’t release her. And she made no move to pull away.
“Was that a mistake?” he asked.
“No.” Molly sounded quite sure, and Guy’s heart soared. But then she continued, “However, repeating it might be.”
SNIPPET OF REVIEW
I absolutely loved this book! Ms. Burke descriptions of London in 1941 were so clear and concise, I felt like I was there. The historical accuracy of this story was spot on. ~~Amazon review
Barbara Burke’s peripatetic life means she’s lived everywhere from a suburban house in a small town to a funky apartment in a big city, and from an architecturally designed estate deep in the forest to a cedar shack on the edge of the ocean. Everywhere she’s gone she’s been accompanied by her husband, her animals and her books.