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Interview on Island of Deceit

Interview Questions

1.         Tell us about your latest book, Island of Deceit.
Island of Deceit (Published June 2010) is the story of ex-Wall Streeter, Barbara Turner, who wants revenge on the scam artist who swindled her grandmother out of her life savings and then killed her.  Posing as a hair stylist, Barbara arrives in Paradise Island, shocked to discover that she’s related to the town’s matriarch—and that she’s one of the trustees of the family’s antique bowl, which has mysteriously disappeared.  Determined to solve these mysteries on her own, Barbara refuses to ask the town’s sheriff for help.
Unfortunately, Sheriff Harper Porterfield—Paradise Island’s most eligible bachelor—already suspects Barbara of hiding something.  But that isn’t the only reason he won’t let the plus-sized beauty out of his sight.  He finds her thoroughly irresistible, but her subterfuge could destroy any chance of a happily ever after—especially wile there’s still a killer on the loose.
            Set against the background of the Virginia coastline, Island of Deceitis the third title in the “Quest for the Golden Bowl” series.  The setting is Paradise Island, a small, fictitious island near Virginia Beach whose inhabitants are descendants of seven women who were shipwrecked there almost four hundred years ago.  A golden bowl has been a cherished heirloom for several generations, but now it has disappeared.  The family is searching for the bowl and other lost treasures.

2.         You pride yourself in writing believable stories.  Is there a reason behind this approach?
My readers demand believable characters and settings.  I try to create strong characters readers can identify with and who fight for what they believe in.  Most of my stories revolve around families and how a particular character fits into the family dynamic.  Why do they do the things they do?  I like to explore the problems everyday people—lawyers, cops, doctors, plus-size women, teachers, business owners—encounter.  I also like to explore the kaleidoscope of romance—whether between young people just starting out, or a mature couple experiencing a second chance at love.  Readers want to believe that wherever they are in their lives that things can get better.  I believe this is true.  It’s the reason I’ve made Lisa Claxton, the antagonist in Golden Night, the heroine of the fourth novel.  On the surface characters can react one way, but unless we have delved deeply into their psyche we don’t know what’s causing their behavior.  We discover different layers in Lisa as we travel through the last two books in the series.

3.         You have twenty-four released titles to date and are a full-time writer.  Did your love of writing start at an early age and did you ever think you’d be an accomplished writer?
            Island of Deceit is my 24th title.  Although I enjoyed writing at an early age, I didn’t recognize the skills or thought I’d actually pursue writing as a career.  So many of the books I was required to read in school had depressing endings.  I would love the book until the end.  It wasn’t until I began reading romance novels with characters I could identify with that my urge to write resurfaced.  It was years later before I actually attempted to write a novel.  I graduated with a science degree and when I decided to write, I returned to school to take writing classes.  Joining a writing organization and surrounding myself with other writers of diverse backgrounds buoyed my belief that becoming published was possible.

4.         With the emphasis on health and diets, why did you choose to write a plus-sized heroine when weight wasn’t the focus of the story?
One of my fans asked for a book with a plus-sized heroine.  Romance is the one area where writers should be more inclusive.  The usual focus of stories whose heroines are plus-sized women is on losing weight and negative perceptions.  It dilutes the usual female empowering reads of regular romance novels.  I created a story of a strong woman who has strong goals.  Most women—whatever their size—are much too busy living to focus solely on their weight.  Let’s celebrate all women.  Let’s face it.  Everyone isn’t going to be a size 5, but she should still feel worthy and good about herself.  She shouldn’t hate herself because of her genes.
5.         There are a number of sub-genres within romance (erotica, suspense, mystery, historical, etc).  Do you think you’d ever venture into one of these in the future?
            Island of Deceit, published by Kensington/Dafina, is considered to be in the sub-genre of romantic suspense.  My Dafina books contain both romance and suspense.  I hope to continue writing romance, but I am currently writing a women’s fiction novel.  I find that I want to write more detailed stories with more depth.

6.         How much longer do you think you’ll be writing novels?  Do you find it harder to write novels now that you are so far into your career?
            I hope to write for the rest of my life.  I don’t think writing is harder then it used to be as much as I think I change and grow and so do my stories.  I have a desire to broach different subject matter and to explore more deeply into the dynamics of relationships.  I have so many story ideas and I want to emphasize so many things.

7.         What projects are you working on for the future?  When can we expect them to be released?
The remaining title for the “Quest for the Golden Bowl” series is under contract with Kensington/Dafina and will be published in June 2011.  I’m also currently working on a mainstream novel I hope to publish one day. 

9.         What advice do you have for the aspiring authors out there who are considering a career in romance writing?
            Join a writers group.  You gain wonderful information about your craft, but the biggest assets are the members and their inspiration.   
Get to know the field, who your writing most resemble, and why you think you are unique.  What kind of stories do you like to read?  What kind do you like to tell, etc.?
Local chapters of Romance Writers of America are located throughout the country.  They are excellent tools for learning the skills as well as the business of writing.  Go to the RWA website ( to find a chapter in your area. 
If writing is your desire, learn as much as you can about your craft and never be deterred from your goal.  Rejection is the name of the game.  Remember the saying "WRITERS WRITE."

10.       Is there anything else you would like to share with our readers about yourself or your work?
            Readers like a variety of writing styles.  My stories appeal more to readers who like intense story-telling.  While every novel is about characters at a given time in their lives, I like to explore how they got that way and what changes they make to reach another level. 
            Some of my stories are set in small towns or on islands.  I think the drama and intrigue that bubbles beneath the surface can make a great story in any setting.  I’ve also written books set in the D.C. area and in Seattle.  I have a series featuring women who are all fathered by the same sperm donor.  I like to feature people who are independent, own their own businesses, and who have a strong sense of family.
Like most writers, I play the “what if” game.  If I read a newspaper or magazine article I ask how this can be used as a story. 



Copyright 2014 Candice Poarch