9:42 AM

In the Author Spotlight & Contest

Elaine Cantrell

CONTEST: Leave a comment for a chance to win an ecopy of Elaine's book, The Welcome Inn.  To win you must leave an email address so she can contact you.

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

Elaine: It’s a pleasure to be here, Ann. Thanks so much for inviting me.

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

Elaine: At the moment I’m struggling with our new dog. He was a rescue dog so he’s difficult to say the least. He’s coming along, though. He hides his rawhide bones all over the house. I sat on the sofa the other day and found a bone he’d hidden under a throw pillow, and last night I found another one in a pile of sheets I was collecting for the wash. He’s learned how to dig too. He’s a white dog, but his paws are usually orange because we live in an area where the soil is red. My son said he looks like a Creamsicle. Needless to say, I spend a lot of time bathing him.

AL: Tell us what you have on the bookshelf for us to read.

Elaine: It’s called Return Engagement, and even though I wrote it, I fell in love with my own hero. This guy, Richard, is a compilation of all my heroes. He’s sexy, handsome, smart, passionate, romantic, impulsive, and just a tiny bit dangerous. My heroine gets an adrenalin rush every single time she’s around him. I liked him so much I have a sequel written and have started on a third book. May I have one minute to brag? Return Engagement is number 5 on the Whiskey Creek Press best seller list.

AL: What other works are you deep into?

Elaine: Truthfully, I’m almost out of my mind with edits. I have a book that was supposed to be out March 8, but the date was pushed back a few weeks. It’s called A New Dream and is about a pro-football player. I also have a book coming at the end of May. The title is still up in the air. Every waking minute that I’m not at work I’ve been editing these books. One is finished, but the other isn’t.

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

Elaine: Yes, Return Engagement.

AL: When you write do you do a detailed outline before you get started or do you have the idea then just 'fly by the seat of your pants'?

Elaine: I always know my starting point and where I want to end, and maybe have a general idea of how to do it, but mostly I create it as I go along.

AL: Is there an author(s) out there that you’d love to do an anthology with?

Elaine: That’s an interesting thought. I’ve never considered doing an anthology. I have a lot of favorite authors so nobody in particular comes to mind. Maybe Maggi Andersen, Kim Bowman, Stephanie Burkhart, or Ruth Hartman. They’ve all been to my blog recently, and I like their excerpts.

AL: It’s time to get personal! I love that you’re a teacher. Can you tell us one of your favorite memories over the years? It must be very rewarding to help shape a young person’s life.

Elaine: Two things that warm my heart happened recently. One of my students begged to read the sci/fi novel I was writing. I had to edit some parts, but he devoured the book and asked for more. Another one of my students asked me to help her write a story, a little summer romance thing. I did help her, and I plan to feature her story on my blog.

AL: How do you celebrate St. Patrick’s Day? I’m a shame to my ancestors. I wear green, but I leave the drinking to others. I’m a terrible lightweight.

Elaine: You sound like me! I’m Irish too, but I usually have to work on St. Patrick’s Day, so I wear shamrock earrings and just do my regular routine.

AL: What annoys you enough to be considered a pet peeve?

Elaine: Not wiping the crumbs off the kitchen counters after the dishes are done. It totally drives me bonkers!

AL: If you were a cartoon, which character would you be?

Elaine: I’d like to be Wonder Woman, but I’m probably like Mr. Frederickson from the movie Up.

AL: What do you hope for your writing career in the next few years? Any goals that you have yet to obtain that you have set for yourself?

Elaine: I’d like to release a few more books of course, and my goal that I have yet to achieve is to be number one on my publisher’s bestseller list. Right now I’m number five.

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

Elaine: I don’t know the key to success, but the key to failure is trying to please everybody. Bill Cosby. Profound when you think about it.

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

Elaine: Thanks for having me, Ann. I enjoyed talking to you and your readers.

AL: If you’d like to find out more about Elaine please visit:




Elizabeth Lane is one lucky woman. She has it all-money, fame, a satisfying career and a devoted fiancé. Her humble beginnings are all but obscured, but she isn’t the kind of woman Senator Henry Lovinggood wants for his son, Richard. Senator Lovinggood plans to make Richard the President of the United States; he’ll need a woman from a wealthy, powerful family by his side. Ten years ago the senator broke Richard and Elizabeth up, but this time it won’t be so easy, for Elizabeth wants to know what might have been. This time she’ll fight back, a struggle which ultimately leads to kidnapping and attempted murder and alienates her from the man of her dreams.


“Hurry up, Elizabeth. Jay’s almost finished talking, and he goes ballistic if anyone holds up the shoot.” Cathy Craig, Elizabeth Lane’s best friend and honorary sister, stood in the doorway of the trailer to wait for her.

“I’ll be right there, Cathy. Just let me adjust this belt.” She groaned as she tried to get the belt to rest in the right place. “I hate this costume. Oh, why do I have to be so curvy?”

“Who cares? It works for the public, right?”

Elizabeth giggled. “I guess so. Are there many people watching?”

“Yeah, a good many. Jay told them you were in the movie, so most of them are probably waiting to see you.”

“Oh, I don’t mind,” Elizabeth answered. “If they didn’t want to see me and get my autograph, I guess I’d have to find other work.”

The two friends laughed together and made their way to the set on the beach. “It’s Elizabeth!” a shrill female voice cried. The crowd buzzed with excited chatter as the spectators pressed forward to get a good luck at the big star. Elizabeth smiled and cheerfully waved to her fans. She knew some of them followed her life religiously. She could guess why, too. She represented the glamour and excitement they craved but lacked in their daily lives. She knew a lot about dreams, so yes, she’d gladly smile and wave to them. Pausing for one moment, she signed a couple of autographs before moving on.

A tall, blond man standing near the back of the crowd caught her eye. She faltered and stumbled, catching hold of Cathy’s arm to stay upright in the sand. No, it couldn’t be! Richard! They hadn’t seen each other in ten years, but yes, it was Richard. She’d know him anywhere. His blue eyes still mesmerized her as he watched her progress across the beach. Irrelevantly, she remembered that when he was aroused his eyes always darkened.

Her heart took off in a wild gallop. He had matured since she last saw him. His shoulders had broadened, and the well defined muscles in his chest rippled under his tee shirt. His stomach appeared flat and hard, and his legs looked shapely and well formed. The expression on his face spoke of a fiery, passionate nature. Her face flushed as it occurred to her that if she faced him across a bed today as she had done ten years ago, the outcome might be very different. He didn’t look like a man she’d want to turn down.

Uh oh. She had started to shake. Would she be able to do her scene or not? She hoped so, but seeing Richard had brought the past vividly to life.

A dull ache, long familiar, reminded her how much it hurt to break up with him. He really was too young for me, but somehow it didn’t matter at all. We were compatible in every way.

No wonder I fell head over heels in love with him.

Her lips tightened. She had never told him what happened right before their final date, but she remembered it as well as if it had happened only yesterday.

“Hello, Miss Lane. May I come in?”

“Of course, Senator Lovinggood. It’s nice to see you. Please, come in and have a seat.”

“That’s all right. I won’t be staying long. I stopped by to tell you that I don’t want you to see my son anymore.”


“Please, hear me out, Miss Lane.”

“Go on.”

The senator’s cold eyes bored into hers. “Richard is only seventeen, but you are twenty-two. Presumably, you are more experienced than he is. Truthfully, I blame his infatuation for you on his inexperience.

Don’t take advantage of an impressionable boy, Miss Lane. Richard isn’t a toy to be used for your pleasure and then discarded. He’s being groomed for important work in the future, but if he keeps seeing you he has very little chance of winning any political office. If you care about him let him go.”

Even now she swallowed against the anger that still burned her. I was so angry I thought I might have a stroke, she thought. How dare he come to my home and try to intimidate me!

Her eyes took on a faraway expression. I decided on the spot I’d never agree to the senator’s demands. I thought that seeing me wouldn’t ruin Richard’s future career. The senator only wanted to frighten me away.

She and Cathy had reached the set now. Elizabeth pasted a brilliant smile on her face, but inside where it counted she was bleeding. I changed my mind when Richard and I ended up in my bedroom kissing, touching, and undressing. I knew then that Senator Lovinggood was right. If Richard and I continued our relationship, the press would crucify both of us. While it would probably help my career, it would only hurt him. Scandal titillates the public and enhances a star’s reputation, but it’s the kiss of death for a politician.

“Psst, Elizabeth! Aren’t you listening to me?” Cathy sounded cross.

“Sorry,” Elizabeth apologized. “What did you say?”

Cathy shrugged. “It wasn’t important. What were you thinking so hard about?”

I…ah…I was..thinking about someone I used to know.”

“Who?” Kathy asked.

Elizabeth sighed. “An old boyfriend if you really want to know. I let him go, but it almost killed me. I…don’t know if I…ever really got over it.”

“Oh, I guess everyone remembers the one who got away,” Cathy lightly answered. “You’ve got Alex now, and you guys are happy, right?”

“Yes, very happy.” And they were, but come hell or high water she intended to talk to Richard the minute this scene ended. She’d like to know what he’d done with his life.

Hmm. Wonder if Senator Lovinggood still tried to control him? He didn’t look like a man who’d take kindly to his father interfering in his business.

She squared her shoulders, a look of determination on her face. After ten years she deserved a sense of closure, and she intended to get it. Then maybe she could finally close the door on the past and Richard Lovinggood.

CONTEST: Leave a comment for a chance to win an ecopy of Elaine's book, The Welcome Inn. To win you must leave an email address so she can contact you.


Adelle Laudan said...

Wavin' madly at Elaine and Ann. Great interview ladies. I could agree more with you and Bill Cosby. It is a surefire way to drive yourself crazy by trying to please everyone. Anyone with kids will attest to that lol.
I'm sure one day you'll find yourself in that #1 spot.
Best of luck to you, my friend.

ev said...

Oh, I can't wait to read this one!! I love the whole set up already and now I need to know what the danged costume is!!

As a mom of multiple rescues, it's called time and lots and lots of love and I learned the hard way, no raised voices. I have one we have been (we, ha, me) working with for almost three years now and he still has some problems but not as many as when he was rescued from the puppy mill. I recently went on vacation alone and after about four days hubby told me he ate a shoe. At least he doesn't do it when I go to work anymore, I have to be gone awhile before he gets upset with me.

Elaine Cantrell said...

Thank you both for stopping by. Adelle, I'm working on that number 1 spot.

Ev, The dog is already better. He hasn't eaten anything awful since he came here. He hasn't wet the floor either, so we are definitely making progress.

Beth D. Carter said...

Hi Elaine! Sounds like a fantastic book! I really enjoyed reading a little about you! Good luck with the doggie!

Anonymous said...

Great interview, girls! And the book sounds great...and has such a beautiful cover!

Karen said...

Great interview, girls! And love the book excerpt...and the beautiful cover!

LuAnn said...

What a great interview! Can't wait to read this one.