Please join me in welcoming Valerie Hansen to my blog today. Valerie has been patient with me as she was scheduled for a couple of weeks back.
1. Can you tell us a little about yourself? I'm a southern-fried Yankee; born in Ohio, married in CA and finally came to live on an old farm in AR (where I've always belonged) in 1995. My husband and I both feel as if this is where we are happiest and most content.
2. When you were a child did you have a favourite book or books? I loved them all. Read voraciously - everything from comic books to Black Beauty and Gone With the Wind to Agatha Christie and thousands in between.
3. Do you have a favourite Genre to both read and right write?
I love mystery and suspense. When I'm relaxing I like to read the short stories in Ellery Queen and Alfred Hitchcock magazines. As I wrote book after book for Love Inspired, the editors noticed my tendency toward mystery so when they launched the suspense line I was right there, ready and waiting!
4. Did you have favourite authors growing up who have influenced you? I never followed authors then the way I do now. If a book intrigued me I read it. Period. Sometimes under the bed covers at night with a flashlight! Yes, I was a bit naughty.
5. When did you know you wanted to be an author? I was turning 40 and looking for something to do that would be fun. Something I had never really tried before. I'd already dabbled in commercial art and raising lots of animals so writing a book sounded like a nice challenge. NOBODY TOLD ME IT WAS GOING TO BE SO HARD. Or something that would grow into a whole new career.
6. How did you go about becoming an author? I took a college extension class that I thought was just about writing. It wasn't. It turned out to be a lot of info about marketing and selling, too. Those teachers said I had potential and I was too "green" and naive to know how much work was going to be involved.
7. If you were not a writer what would you like to be? I will always be a writer at heart. It's more than a job, it's a calling. A compulsion, if you will. In addition to this I have lots of other interests, especially art and animals.
8. Outside reading and writing what do you like to do? Ah, here we go. Good stuff to share. I love to garden. Hike with my dogs in the woods. Fish in the farm ponds for the catfish we stocked there. And both my husband and I love to travel, although with all the books I'm contracted to write we don't get away as often as we'd like.
9. Do you have a place you love to visit or would love to visit? We went to Norway, the country of my father's birth, a few years ago. Since we've seen most all of the USA over the years I might like to go back to Europe. Then again, there's no place like home.
10. If you could have a meal with 3 living people who would you choose and why? This is a hard question. My husband would have to be included so then we're down to 2. Hmmm. I'm sitting here staring at the computer screen and thinking of people I've admired over the years but many are gone now. I did meet and was impressed by Ray Bradbury and Lawrence Block, but Ray died recently. I'd like to shake Billy Graham's hand and tell him that his longevity amazes and blesses me. So does that of the Queen of England. Beyond that I really can't say. I guess my philosophy is to be content where I am and in the company of close friends and family. It's not a cop-out. I just don't feel as if I'm missing anything.
Finally can you tell us about your current books and/or any that will be coming out soon. Also where we can find you on the web.
Gladly. I'm always at www.ValerieHansen.com and post info as well as book covers and excerpts. If I wasn't trying to write up to 4 books a year I might also have a blog but I just don't dare take that much time away from my work.
My final book for 2012 is STANDING GUARD, part of my "Defenders" series, set in rural Arkansas and dealing with CASA, Court Appointed Special Advocates for children.
Then, in 2013, I have 2 scheduled already and will hopefully have more. EXPLOSIVE SECRETS, April 2013, is book #4 in a K-9 cop series and I wrote about the sweetest black lab while my new rescued lab, Lucy, slept under my desk at my feet. Then there should be a historical about the Cherokees in 1830, followed by book #6 in a new, as yet unnamed Love Inspired series with my contribution coming in Dec. 2013. All I have to do is writeit!!!