Tuesday, March 21, 2023

Lora Leigh Interview - In Isabeau's Eyes

Photo Content from Lora Leigh

Lora Leigh dreams in bright, vivid images of the characters’ intent on taking over her writing life, and fights a constant battle to put them on the hard drive of her computer before they can disappear as fast as they appeared.

Lora’s family and her writing life coexist, if not in harmony, in relative peace with each other. Surrounded by a menagerie of pets, friends, and a son who keeps her quick wit engaged, Lora finds her life filled with joys, aided by her fans whose hearts remind her daily why she writes.


Greatest thing you learned at school. 
I wasn’t a good student I have to admit but I really enjoyed watching students and teachers and predicting what they may or may not do. The predictions were hit and miss, but I learned about actions and reactions in the process that I learned later how to incorporate in my writing.

When/how did you realize you had a creative dream or calling to fulfill? 
The seventh grade I realized I wanted to write when my English teacher stepped in class and had us write a story while he graded papers. I’ve been writing since that day.

Beyond your own work (of course), what is your all-time favorite book and why? And what is your favorite book outside of your genre? 
I can’t say just one book is my all time favorite. I have moods. So it’s according to the mood I’m in as to which book would be my favorite.

Tell us your most rewarding experience since being published. 
Anything that puts me face to face with readers where I can discuss books. Any book. The emotions that the stories bring to readers, the heroes or storylines they love the most. Even what they hate. There’s an energy when readers get together that I haven’t felt at any other time.

What was the single worst distraction that kept you from writing this book? 
Reality! It insisted on interfering at every chance no matter how much I tried to hide from it. And trust me, I really tried.

Can you tell us when you started IN ISABEAU'S EYES, how that came about? 
In Isabeau’s Eyes began years ago, with the heroine. I actually put off writing it, because I had no idea how to handle her disability within the story. She actually forced me to step back and re-imagine life from a far different perspective and as I did so, I got to know her in ways I haven’t known many of my other characters.

What was the most surprising thing you learned in creating your characters? 
The most surprising thing I’ve learned, I believe, is patience and what you see on the surface where a person is concerned is rarely the person you’ll glimpsed beneath. The complexities and surprising contradictions of human nature fascinate me, and I love everything I learn about my characters when they show me true depth of their nature.

Writing Behind the Scenes
My own process to beginning and finishing a book makes everyone else around me crazy, I think. I often say it’s a good thing my fiancĂ© is patient, and my friends are understanding.

Distractions are my worse enemy, and I barely tolerate them.

A book often begins with the characters already waiting. They chose their names when they first showed up in my imagination. Who and what they are is already there in my head, with just a few details that I have to figure out. Then I sit down with a pen (Pigma micron .01) and narrow ruled journal. It has to be the absolutely right pen and lined paper. When I first get up, I wash my face, brush my teeth and then go straight to work. I don’t plot, I put together character backgrounds and timelines (which always change). I sketch in scenes, make notes. Research any part of their lives that I don’t know and over the course of a few days, put together the motivations of my hero and heroine. As I’m doing this, I have to have plenty of coffee as well as a bottle of Coke at my side. 80’s pop music in the background with a scattering of country music as well.

If I get up and leave the house, its over for the day. Any break in my concentration can take days to catch up from. When I begin writing, I can’t deal with reality, don’t want to hear about reality, and please don’t let it interfere. (The last six years reality has kicked my butt.)

I often don’t hear the phone ring, promise to answer texts later but more often than not, I forget. I stay immersed in whatever world I’m writing in, because if I don’t, then I can’t keep a handle on it, or my characters. The ideas will fracture, the characters will stop talking to me, and putting the story together will take months rather than weeks and the story becomes a mess in my head and on paper.

Writing by the seat of your pants can become torturous rather than the fun adventure it should be when reality happens…

What is the first thing you think of when you wake up in the morning? 
My first thought when I wake up, is whatever story I’m working on, or want to work on. The characters take over my imagination and my life while I’m in their story.

Which incident in your life that totally changed the way you think today? 
The final lesson I was given, that just because you love someone doesn’t mean they love you. But they’ll still lie about it. They’ll still take everything they can steal and then lie and demand more. I wish I could say it taught me to be cautious, but I’ve found I’m only cautious with those who have already hurt me, not everyone in general. The thing about betrayal though, and broken hearts and broken promises, of having your life feel broken, is that it makes your characters more vivid, gives them a depth, at least in my imagination, that they wouldn’t have had otherwise.

Which would you choose, true love with a guarantee of a heart break or have never loved before? 
This is probably the easiest question. I’d always choose love. I have always chosen love. My heart is broken, patched, in pieces and scarred. But I still love.

What do you usually think about right before falling asleep? 
I go to sleep thinking about the same thing that I wake up thinking about. Whatever story I’m currently immersed in. They take over my life and I don’t think I’d really have it any other way.

First Love? 
Do you ever forget your first love? I was fifteen, and he was the bad boy my parents had nightmares about. He’s my fondest memory.

What is your greatest adventure? 
When I think of adventures, I always think outside the everyday events of life. So I have to say my greatest adventure is whichever book I’m writing at any given time. My characters fascinate me. I fall in love with each one, get my heart broken by them as I’m writing their story, and let each one go reluctantly, when they’re book is finished.

The first novel in a new series from #1 New York Times bestselling author Lora Leigh—you've met the Mackays; now it's time to meet their friends.

Danger is stalking Isabeau Boudreaux. After the deaths of her parents ten years ago during a violent attack that left her blind, remnants of her vision are returning. But a series of accidents has convinced her friends the Mackays of Somerset, Kentucky, that someone wants her dead. When a roadside blowout proves to be almost fatal for Isabeau and her good friend Angel, Angel’s brother mercenary Tracker Calloway knows this was no accident.

After a particularly bloody job, the last thing Tracker wants to do is get involved. But whoever is after Isabeau almost hurt his sister, and Isabeau is the most beautiful woman he’s ever seen. Tracker is determined to protect her but knows staying away from Isabeau is impossible. He begins a steady seduction to tempt the innocent woman into a world of hunger like she could have never imagined. And keeping her is the only option—if he can save her from an unknown enemy as her sight begins to slowly return.

You can purchase In Isabeau's Eyes at the following Retailers:

And now, The Giveaways.
Thank you LORA LEIGH for making this giveaway possible.
1 Winner will receive a Copy of In Isabeau's Eyes by Lora Leigh.


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