First, Beth, what would you like to tell readers about yourself?
* A long time ago, my husband-at-the-time got into riding Harleys. I loved the exhilaration of being on the back of the bike. I had a jacket with red flames and our bike was painted cherry red. I even took a three day course to get my motorcycle license, and I passed…even though I laid the bike down twice.
* So when I write about what it feels like to be on a bike…I’m doing that from memory.
* I love to hear from readers so I’ve made it really easy to find me on the web. You can find my links later on in the post.
What are you going to tell us about today?
* First I'd like to share my thoughts on how "A Cover Says it All" and then I'm going to talk about True North.
* There is perhaps no other creative outlet that bares the writers soul quite like writing. Whether it’s writing poetry, songs or stories, the modern day bard has to tap into deep recesses of the soul. Writing stories can be a rollercoaster journey, full of emotional ups and downs as the writer tries to convey believable characters and situations. A writer pours their very essence into their creation, much like Dr. Frankenstein into his monster. Add a little electricity and pretty soon the author is shouting “It’s Alive!”.
* The first thing that draws our eye is beauty. And beauty is everywhere; the color and texture to a painting, the sun setting in the horizon, a favorite actor or actress, and in simple things like the smile of a child or the sparkle of a diamond ring. Is it no wonder, then, that the cover of a book must be absolutely perfect to set apart from the competition and draw the buyer’s eye?
* I will admit I am one of those people who will judge a book by its cover, at least initially. I see a beautiful cover and it makes me want to read what it’s about. I see a cover that’s not visually appeasing and I tend to pass it by. But with the rise in ebook publishing, it’s forcing the graphic artists who design these covers to be better and bolder. A cover artist is tasked with the job of interpreting the story through art, incorporating all aspects of what the bosses want verses what the author wants while producing something that will draw the reader/buyer in. It’s not an easy job.
* Now-a-days, with the cost of books (even ebooks), a story has to take full advantage of every strategy to grab the readers’ attention. The cover has to incorporate a lot detail, so it’s very important that the cover artist bears in mind not only the story, but what brings the story alive. Most publishers won’t consider that far, only content with producing a sexy look to market the book. But writers put their souls into each story, and the passion and romance pouring from the cover is very important.
* For my new novel “True North”, the heroine is Native American. I sent the cover artist the specifics of who she was, her personality, and what she was supposed to look like. I even sent a reference picture. I got an email saying that becasue my publisher was based in England, they didn’t have Native American stock photos. All she could promise was to do her best so I put my faith into the artist’s hands. She didn’t fail to deliver. Imagine my surprise when I received the proof of my cover and saw the lovely lady on the front.
* It is said a picture is worth a thousand words and I firmly believe that having a great cover is one of the best assets an author has. Even in the digital evolution of e-books, a cover is one of the most important aspects of giving personality to the story. It guides the reader into seeing the hero and heroine, bringing them to life and adding depth to the drama unfolding. All of which is needed for that brief time where the reader escapes into fantasy.
So, share a bit about True North and the series.
* True North is the second book in the Red Wolves Motorcycle Club Series. While the first book was more the precursor to this world, this book jumps right into the club. North Tabion is the president, and he’s trying to move the club out of the illegal activies into legit business. His best friend is the town sherrif, Givon Halloran. They grew up together with abusive fathers that made as close as brothers. When Allis comes into the mix, their friendship only grows deeper as they have to protect her from numerous threats.
* The series of the books, in order, are: Along Came Merrie, True North, When Dove Cries, and Lily Roar.
* There are also two companion books to the Red Wolves series: Mad Delights and Madness Ends, which feature the Men of Hell MC.
How'd you/your muse come up with this story?
* I love the tv shows Sons of Anarchy and Longmire, so my brain started to crossbreed the two. I didn’t want to do the obvious, though. One of the hardest things to deal with is the fact that the men are outlaw bikers. On one hand you have to stay true to the ideas set forth for one percenters but on the other hand, it’s a story where the heroes need to be redeemable. On SOA, they’re gun runners, drug runners, and have no hesitation killing someone. I decided to focus on a smaller club setting, more of a family. The first book is pretty tame, but the following books are focused on human trafficking, so things escalate. In True North, there is violence. You’ve been warned.
Who's your favorite character in the book & why?
* Hands down, North is my favorite character, and I think he’s my favorite through the whole series. He’s got a sarcastic sense of humor that I really love. His interactions with Givon are hilarious.
What's your favorite line in the story?
* Instead of a line, there is a scene where North talks Givon into getting his first tattoo. Givon is slightly...hesitant...to go under the needle. This scene kinda sums up their relationship perfectly!
** Once the stencil was in place and Branch had new gloves on, Branch bent over Givon’s side and touched the needle to skin.
** “Holy fuck!” Givon yelled, although he didn’t move a muscle. “This fucking hurts!”
** “Shut up, you pussy,” North said.
** “What the hell did I sign up for? Shit! Are you almost done?”
** North seemed to have a hard time holding in his laughter. “He just started. Don’t move.”
** “I’m not moving! Christ, the last thing I want him to do is make a mistake then I have to get a bigger tattoo to cover it up. Fuck. This is the last time I let you talk me into doing something like this.”
** “Once you get one you’ll want another,” North warned.
A look into the story
* Allison Evening is on the run, hiding out from an ex bent on vengeance and tending bar when she’s kidnapped to be sold into human trafficking. In a desperate attempt to free herself, she runs, only to be shot down and left for dead.
* North and Givon are in the right place at the right time. They save Allis and as they nurse her back to health, the three find a bright, burning love. But when her past catches up with her, the only way to save herself and her newfound love is if she, North, and Givon can follow love’s true path.
* Absently he wiped the drool from his chin and blinked as he looked at Allis. She lay there smiling at him then reached up to smooth down his hair. He’d slept with his head on the edge of the hospital bed so Lord only knew what he looked like. His lower back was killing him from hunching over all night.
* Givon was still sleeping and North winced at seeing his friend’s head tucked onto his chest. Giv was going to have one helluva of a neck kink. He rose and stretched, his back popping. Then he bent over and placed a tender kiss on Allis’s forehead. Her eyes widened and he had the insane urge to claim her lips next and kiss her until they were both breathless and squirming. He wondered if his thoughts reflected in his eyes because damned if it didn’t look like an answering passion flared to life in her dark gaze.
* Instead of caving in to his base desire, he swiped a finger down her cheek, memorizing the softness of her skin, before reluctantly backing away from her and leaving.
Buy True North here...
Totally Bound | Amazon | All Romance eBooks | Barnes and Noble
Find Beth D. Carter here...
Website | Twitter | Facebook | Tsu | Blog | Amazon author page
Thank you for joining us here today, Beth D. Carter! It was a pleasure getting to know you and your story.