SPOTLIGHT – AUTHOR VICKY BURKHOLDER
Title: Lost Among the Stars
Author: Vicky Burkholder
Series: Galactic Danger #2
Theme(s): Opposites Attract,
Genre: Futuristic Romance, Paranormal
“How do you escape death when you are lost in space and a killer is aboard your ship?”
Amanda Ki’s humanitarian trip to Xy-Three is fraught with assassins and saboteurs who are popping up faster than she can deal with them. Caught up in a web of intrigue, kidnapping, and terror, Mandy joins forces with the captain of the Phoenix, Declan Chalmers. Declan is tall, dark, handsome, and probably the most arrogant, dictatorial man she has ever met. He’s also one of the few people she can trust. Declan doesn’t know what to expect from the VIP who heads up a million-dollar enterprise, when she boards his ship. The tiny, exotic, and packed full of grit woman is not only drop dead gorgeous and smart, she’s also deadly when it comes to martial arts. A skill he wants on his side when the space craft is sabotaged. Thrown together, the two form a tight bond, but if they aren’t careful, they could end up dead.
Hi Vicky and wow, what an exciting introduction to your book. I’ve got it on my to read list and will be reviewing for sure.
Welcome to my blog Vicky. It’s really great to have you here and we are kicking off with a little bit about your alter ego.
Vicky has multiple homes all over the universe. She looks human – for the most part – but when she starts writing about characters being able to move things or flicking fire from their fingertips, or changing the course of rivers, people tend to get a little freaked out. She found the one guy out there in the universe who loves her for who she is, and they’ve been together forever and raised four wonderful (now) adults. Her career includes work as a technical writer/editor, a stringer for the local newspaper, and an editor and copy editor for various publishers. At various times in her life, she has been a teacher, a secretary, a short-order cook, a computer specialist, a DJ, and a librarian. When not editing or writing, she can be found in the kitchen creating gluten free goodies for her family.
Next up we have a short excerpt from the book:
‘Declan took in the woman sitting in front of him, from the long, coal-black hair held back with a tie, to the expensive, but practical jumpsuit. She was everything Declan disliked—a bureaucrat of the worst type—stubborn, fiery, and determined. Revising his earlier thoughts, she was neither old, nor wrinkled, but Dec wasn’t sure about the coddling yet. “There’s no need to thank me. You handled the situation exceedingly well. However,” his voice changed from silky smooth to one of warning, “in the future, please don’t give my crew any orders without checking with me first.”
Miss Ki stared at him. He could see the muscles in her jaw working. Fine, so she was angry. Dec wasn’t exactly happy with the way this trip was starting out either.
“I wasn’t aware I needed your permission to do my job. These people are my responsibility.”
“And this ship and her crew are mine. While you’re on my ship, you will follow my orders. Is that clear, Ms. Ki?”
Mandy stood, bracing her hands on the desk. “Like hell I will. You may be in charge of this ship, but I am in charge of this mission. Is that clear, Captain?” Without waiting for an answer, she stalked from the room.’
What inspires your stories, Vicky?
I’ve always loved a sweet romance where old friends come back together and find each other again. Add in Christmas, snow, and all sorts of goodies and you have the makings of a wonderful holiday romance.
In writing The Gingerbread Lodge, what was the most fun? Figuring out which cookies to use and which ones to leave out. I’ve always loved to bake – it’s a stress reliever for me – and cookies are so much fun. So many different kinds to choose from, or to invent! But I stuck with tried and true ones for this story—ones I grew up with like snickerdoodles, lemon crisps, and molasses cookies like my mom used to make.
Are you working on other books in this series? Not at the moment. I have another series I’m working on. But that doesn’t mean there won’t be another Christmas cookie one next year!
What authors have inspired you?
A lot. Robert Heinlein, Anne McCaffrey, Linnea Sinclair, David Eddings, Kathleen Woodiwiss—I could go on forever. I read a wide variety of books that are not limited to just romances. I pretty much read everything except horror—and maybe “literary” books like Faulkner (read him, didn’t care for him). Not my thing. But science fiction, romance, fantasy, mystery, etc. You name it, I read it. You can even go farther back and add in Nancy Drew books, Shakespeare, the Greek tragedies… and more.
Which genre is your favorite?
In line with the answer above, I can’t pin down an exact favorite. But if I had to say something, I’d say probably cozy mysteries and romantic comedies (any era) in the style of Sandra Hill or a good futuristic like Susan Grant and Linnea Sinclair. I like a little tongue-in-cheek humor when I read. Something that makes me smile. But they all have to have a HEA.
How do you decide on a character’s name?
That’s a hard one for me. It has to have meaning, of some sort. I have lists of names (and their meanings) that I often fit to the character. One thing is certain, I cannot write the story until I know their names. And once I settle on a name, it doesn’t change.
What time of day do you feel most creative?
Very early in the morning. I’m definitely a morning person—I’m usually up around five or five-thirty (with no alarm clock) and use that time before my husband is up to write and work. The dark hours before dawn are the best time of day for me. But don’t ask me to do anything after 9:30 p.m. Not going to happen. 😊
Did you ever have a character surprise you?
Yes. All the time. I think they’re going to do one thing and…there they go, off on some tangent I never had in mind. And it usually works out better.
Who is your favorite character and why?
It depends on the story I’m writing. In this one, it was Minerva because she’s so unique. In one of my books, “Revenge Among the Stars”, SAMI, the AI, was actually my favorite character because he’s so…human. He’s a computer with attitude. In another (a fantasy with dragons), Crumb is my favorite. In another book, it will be someone else. Each book has someone I love. Someone who will stick in my mind.
What was your funniest moment as an author?
Weird as it may sound, a vacation I took with my family to the ocean. I was in the middle of creating the world for another book and just couldn’t figure out the landscape, so, my kids and I sat on the beach and built a world out of sand, kind of like the guy in “Close Encounters of the Third Kind”. We built mountains and rivers, towns, everything. People looked at us kind of funny, but it all worked out. The kids and I had a ball and I got my world built. I took pictures of it all before the tide washed it away to bring home.
What do you find more challenging about writing than you expected?
Two things: the actual writing and the promotions. I have a ton of stories in my head, but actually sitting down and putting them on paper is often a challenge. There are some days when the words just won’t come. When you stare at the blank screen and wonder what the heck you’re going to write that’s new and different and exciting. If you’re not careful, you can become jaded after a while. And then there’s promoting your books and yourself. For a strong introvert who doesn’t travel, this can be the hardest thing in the world to do. But it’s necessary.
Are you a panster or a plotter:
A little of both. I don’t plot the entire story out, but I know where I’m starting and where it’s going and a little of what happens in the middle. It’s a very loose sort of plotting.
How do you start work on a book?
I get an idea and come up with a main character. Then I interview that character using a journalistic approach: Who are you? What happened? Where did it happen? Why did it happen? How did it happen? When did it happen? And so on. Once I have those questions answered, I can write the story.
When you’re having a problem with a book, what do you do to solve it?
I have an amazing group of writing friends. We call ourselves the Boot Squad because we kick each other’s butts if we’re not getting the work done. Of the five of us, two are my best friends and I can turn to either one of them for brainstorming. They are my worst critics and my best supporters. I’d never be able do what I do without them.
When is Lost Among the Stars due for release?
Thanks Vicky for sharing so much of yourself. It’s been wonderful talking to you and I wish you the very best for the future.
Amazon Author Page: https://www.amazon.com/Vicky-Burkholder
Goodreads Page: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/1264928.Vicky_Burkholder
For Other Works by Vicky Burkholder
(Please be sure to stop by her Website to see all of her works)
The Wild Rose Press: https://www.thewildrosepress.com/bookauthor/vicky-burkholder
Google Books: https://play.google.com/store/books/details/Vicky_Burkholder