8:39 AM

In the Author Spotlight

GEMINI JUDSON

AL: Hi Gemini Thanks for being in the “Author Spotlight” this week.

Gemini: It’s an honor! Thanks for having me.

AL: So, tell us what’s happening with you.

Gemini: I have several thousand art projects planned for 2011 and I’m already thinking about my garden. Oh, and my daughter and I got a mandolin for Christmas so we are learning some chords and a few songs. (Other than that, I’m not too busy.)

AL: So what do you have for us to read.

Gemini: I have a new release coming out in February from Whiskey Creek Press Torrid called Dragonfly Dance. It’s an erotic little romp on the South Dakota plains.

AL: What are you currently working on?

Gemini: Dragonfly Dance is the first of a collection of novelettes with a similar heat and a music theme. Dragonfly Dance is about a fiddle player. I am working on the next one in that collection -- and the next one and the one after that.

AL: Out of all your stories do you have one that is more near and dear your heart?

Gemini: Ring Around the Sun was so much fun to write and seemed to fly onto the page. The main character, Teal, has had a rough life and is easy to rally behind. This book has been honored as a finalist in the EPIC competition this year in the contemporary erotic romance category.

AL: What is one glaringly/specific personality trait that you’ve put into a hero/heroine that is all Gemini? You know, the one where a family member or friend says, “Hey, this is so you.”

Gemini: Oh, fun question! I don’t think I have ever written me. But all my heroines have pieces of me. They all tend to be a little smart-allecky – that’s me. They all cuss pretty freely – that’s me. And they are softies – OK that’s me too. Maybe they are all me!

AL: Has an editor ever disagreed with something you’ve written and wanted a total re-write?

Gemini: No, luckily they’ve always been wowed by my amazing prose. KIDDING! Yes, I’ve gotten the “this will never fly” edit. One editor told me my character’s actions made her “too stupid to live” Ha! And she was right of course. Something about opening her door to a stranger when she knew a killer was on the loose…

AL: It’s time to get personal! What’s your favorite comfort food?

Gemini: Pizza, pizza and pizza with a frosty glass of beer.

AL: What favorite movie; or T.V. show makes you hunker down on the sofa and settle in for the night?

Gemini: I like comedy. Lately we sit and watch Raising Hope and Modern Family. And of course as a family we are Harry Potter junkies.

AL: Are you a writer only, or do you do other activities outside of writing?

Gemini: Lately I have been doing cover art at Whiskey Creek Press. Dragonfly Dance is my own creation. I have several years of graphic design experience and I can play in Photoshop all day long. Sometimes I do and my writing takes a backseat. It seems to exercise the other side of my brain.

AL: Can you share some of your plans for 2011 and beyond?

Gemini: Learn the mandolin, make friends with my horse, write more books, create more cover art, run a half marathon, do lots of camping with my daughter.

AL: Fun question! If you could go anywhere in the world and in any time…where would you go? What would you do? And why that time-period?

Gemini: Oooo. I’d like to travel the United States when it was pristine and untouched. Maybe be a part of the Lewis and Clark expedition. Can you imagine what they must have scene? I know times were tough, but just to see all that beauty… I’d hang out with Sacagawea.

AL: Please share a favorite quote(s) with us.

Gemini: "No one can make you feel inferior without your consent." – Eleanor Roosevelt

AL: Thanks so much for sharing with us, Gemini.

Gemini: What fun! Thanks for the opp.

AL: If you’d like to find out more about Gemini please visit:
 www.gemjudson.com

FEATURED TITLE: DRAGONFLY DANCE

Blurb:

Her fingers play the fiddle like nobody’s business. Her band is Littlehawk Lightening. Her future is Tucker Jennings. They’ll share their dreams, somewhere on the open plains of South Dakota. Just like they’d always planned. When Lori Littlehawk walks in on Tucker in the arms of another woman, her dreams crumble.

The Dragonfly Dance is a South Dakota tradition and Lori realizes she’ll attend this year’s dance single, for the first time. When she learns a talent scout is coming to the dance in search of a fiddle band to feature in a movie, Lori is determined to catch that scout’s attention with new and fabulous music.

On cue, the skies come alive with swarming dragonflies under a perfect prairie sky and music fills the air. Lori meets a dark handsome man and impetuously sets her fiddle aside to explore her new freedom. She has no idea her delicious new playmate is the talent scout and she definitely has his attention.

Excerpt:

Lori gathered her hair into a tight bundle behind her head and fastened it with a clip. Long ago she’d decided to wear it up like that on her wedding day, with a sparkly strapless dress. Goodbye wedding day. Her reflection in the mirror looked puffy. “Fuck you,” she hissed at the puffy woman.

She looked forward to the Dragonfly Dance every summer. Not just because it was a chance to party and play her fiddle all day long and into the night. Not because it brought bands from all over the state and friends she only saw once a year. It was the celebration of something deeper. The air smelled sweet and if the timing was right, the sky hummed with newly-emerged dragonflies. Ever since she could remember, she’d put on a twirly skirt, climb into the Littlehawk camper and head to the gigantic open grassland outside Aberdeen. The Dragonfly Dance was a South Dakota gathering with a long celebrated history and this year she was going to go with a puffy face and a broken heart.

Lori was drawn from her brooding by a knock at her bedroom door. The last person she expected to see standing there was her brother Cameron. The young professional and heartthrob of Aberdeen, Cam taught social studies at the high school. He’d taken up kayaking when summer vacation began, and he looked tan and fit. “Hey Cam. Shouldn’t you be out on the river?”

“Too windy. I talked to dad. I’m sorry about your bad day yesterday.”

Bad day? Okay, she’d work with that opener. “Thanks. You wondering about the Dragonfly Dance? We’re going for it, Cam. We’re playing the good stuff and you better warm up your pipes.”

“My pipes are plenty warm. I’m not wondering about that. I need to talk to you about Tuck.”

Her aching heart leapt. “Have you seen him?”

“No, I haven’t seen him. And lucky for him. I’d punch his lights out.”

“No you wouldn’t.” Lori grinned knowingly at herself in the mirror and caught Cam’s grim look behind her. “What’s going on, Cam?”

“Lori, as painful as this is, it’s for the best.”

“Why would you say that?” Tired of the reflected conversation, she spun her vanity chair to look at Cam. In response, he settled on the corner of her bed.

“A friend of mine went to college in Vermillion and he stays in close contact with a lot of people there. Tuck’s been a bad guy, Lori. Ever since he got to law school.”

“A bad guy?” She shook her head and waited for more.

“He’s a cheat. Just like his dad. I’ve watched you over the years, pulling that bastard out of the mud, time and time again. Something about him always rubbed me the wrong way. Why did he stay loyal to old man Jennings when we all knew what he did to Tuck’s mom? Then when I heard what he’s been up to in Vermillion, I knew he was showing his true stripes. Jenning’s stripes.”

Lori winced at the mention of Tuck’s parents. She was angry as hell, but she didn’t feel ready to rake Tuck over the coals and drag all his hardships out into the open. “When did you hear this, Cam?”

“I’m sorry.” He closed his eyes and drew in a big breath. “Josh told me about this a few months ago. I just didn’t know how to tell you.”

“Tuck’s been cheating on me? For months?” She rose from her chair but found little strength in her legs for anything more. Slowly, she sat back down and rested her forehead in her open palm. “And you knew?”

“I’ve been working up to telling you. It seemed you’d cooled on the marriage talk, so I thought I had some time. No way was I gonna let my little sister marry this guy.”

Lori’s thoughts galloped ahead and behind and around her in circles. Had they cooled? Their future had been so certain, perhaps she didn’t even notice.

After a silence of a thousand years, Cam spoke up. “So are you fired up to play your songs at the Dragonfly?”

Lori looked at her brother. His sleek features always made him look like a racehorse, she thought. He wasn’t ruggedly handsome like Henry, but more refined. Her Sioux uncles said Cameron would have been a fierce warrior. Lori wondered how that would be with his gentle nature. He rocked as a high school teacher and she knew full well that every teenage girl with eyes had a crush on Mr. Littlehawk.

“Yeah, I’m fired up. Let’s do this in a big way this year.” She stood again and found new strength. She grabbed Cam’s hands and pulled him to his feet.

“One more thing you ought to know. I heard Casey and Tuck are going to the Dragonfly Dance as part of the Red Hot Riders.”

“The Riders? I thought they went rock. What the heck is Tucker doing in a rock band? He’s about as red hot as a baked potato.”

Cam burst out laughing and squeezed her hands. “This talent search has everybody scrambling to sound like a fiddle band.” He pounded their clasped hands gently on her chest. “Forget the Riders. Forget Tuck. You’re beautiful and vibrant. And I’m excited to see what you do with your freedom. Have fun with this dance. It’s your time.” He softly kissed her cheek and walked out.

This subtle display of affection threw Lori into a tailspin. On the verge of a new waterfall of tears, she turned to the mirror and released her hair from the clip. It fell past her shoulders and she absently finger-combed the ends. “This is my time.”

She was going to the Dragonfly Dance single, for the first time. And she was looking for some fun.

10 comments:

desere_steenberg said...

WOW this books sounds stunning I must read it !! And the cover simply gorgeous !! Thank you for sharing !!
All the best
Desere

Gemini said...

Thank you Desere! I'm a dragonfly fan so this was a fun cover for me too.

ReneeRearden said...

Gemini,

I LOVE your cover. How fantastic is it that you write the story and then do the cover for the book?!!! I'm so impressed.

Great excerpt. I can't wait to read Dragonfly Dance.

Ari Thatcher said...

Gem, how great to read about your new book! That cover really is sexy. Congrats on the release, I can't wait to read it.

Teresa Tio Miller said...

Gemini, I feel like I'm repeating what everyone has been writing! That's a beautiful cover and I can't wait to read it!

Ann Lory said...

Thanks everyone for stopping by today and Gemini thank you for spotlighting this week.

Ann

Cori Chaffee said...

Great interview! That Eleanor Roosevelt quote is my favorite too! I loved your excerpt. I'm putting this on my list of books to buy!

Gemini said...

Thanks for stopping here at Ann's place everybody. Dragonfly Dance makes me think of long, heavy, hot days of summer. How many more months of snow??

jrlindermuth said...

Not only does her prose sizzle, she's an excellent artist, too.

lastnerve said...

This book is on my to buy list! I fell in love with the cover and now the excerpt. Loved the interview!

Val
lastnerve2000@gmail.com