Friday, September 16, 2011

Guest Author: Sandra Orchard

Today I want to welcome a lovely lady I met at the Writers' Police Academy this time last year...Sandra writes inspirational romantic suspense stories and her first book has just been released...

Who are you and what do you write? My name is Sandra Orchard and I write for Harlequin’s Love Inspired Suspense line.

What’s your favourite place in the world to visit? At the moment, my new grandbaby’s home.  

Where do you write? I have an office devoted to writing filled with my favourite novels and writing craft book and lots of table space for spreading out notes. 

How long have you been published or is this your first sale? This is my first sale!

How long have you been writing? I started writing my first novel in the Fall of 2004.

What comes first—characters or the plot? Usually plot, but the second and third books in my Undercover Cops series star characters from the first so it’s a little of both. 

Who’s your favourite hero? I know you mean from a book or movie, but I’ve got to say that it’s my husband. The first time I rode my daughter’s new horse was bareback, and the horse was not impressed. She bucked once and again, and on the third buck, my feet cleared her withers and I was sailing through the air. My sweet hubby caught me before I hit the ground like the cowboy heroes romance readers swoon over. No kidding. 

What’s your biggest dream? Well, it was to be traditionally published. I guess now it’s time to dream even bigger.

If you were a millionaire would you still write? Yeah, I think I would. I enjoy the creative process, especially brainstorming ideas with my writers’ group. And it’s such an amazingly sweet feeling when the pieces of the story suddenly start fitting into place as the story unfolds. 

Cat or dog person? Definitely a dog person. Never mind that she ate the remote control as a pup, we still adore our sweet husky.
Excerpt: from the middle of the first scene when the hero sees the heroine for the first time: 

Rick kneaded the muscles in the back of his neck. Here to nail Laud for the arson murder of two—maybe more—people, Rick couldn’t afford to have an innocent get in his way. And that’s exactly what would happen if this new PR person acted on Laud’s suggestion. She’d become the face and voice of this project, and far too enticing a target for their saboteur.
A beat-up green Impala crested the hill beyond the site.
“Here she comes now,” Laud said, motioning toward the car.
Rick’s heart slammed into his aching ribs. He’d know that car—and its driver—anywhere. Ginny Bryson. The one person who could blow his cover wide open.
She may not know what he really was, but she knew he was no construction foreman. Rick braced his hand on the nearest stud and razored a breath into his lungs. His ex-girlfriend couldn’t have picked a worse time to careen back into his life. How was he supposed to keep her safe, this time?
            She parked next to Laud’s BMW, and the instant her sleek legs dropped into view below the driver’s door, Rick’s mouth went dry. The sight of her roused memories he’d been trying to forget for fifteen long months.
The wind tousled her hair and reflexively, his fingers curled. He could almost feel the silky caress of her blond tresses. In those moments when he let her take over his thoughts, he could still breathe in her lavender scent and hear the sweet ring of her laughter.
Laud tiptoed through the mud to greet his niece, and then led her across strips of plywood toward the building.
Instinctively, Rick limped into the shadows, because the second Ginny looked past his new mustache and bristly hair, and recognized him, she’d rat him out to her Uncle Emile. The uncle she’d claimed to never see.
Rick glanced skyward and prayed for a miracle.
A lone backhoe loomed on the horizon, silhouetted against the steel gray sky, its tires caked in mud. Too bad the machine wasn’t big enough to dig him out of this mess.
The last thing he wanted to do was lie to Ginny. Again
Learn more about Sandra and her books at...


  1. Hi Toni,
    Thanks so much for having me as your guest today. :)

  2. You know, I *think* I judged this manuscript in the Daphne and was wowed by it then. Toni and Sandra, I'm in my chair just green over your ability to take the Writer's Academy. You two both rock! Sandra, I know Deep Cover will be fabulously successful!

  3. Thanks for being here, Sandra :)
    Donnell--WPA was wonderful. I wish I was going again next week (I think its next week?)

  4. You're right Donnell. It was called Shades of Gray and accidentally missed getting judged for the contest so all the coordinators judged in lieu, and you were one of them. :) They were the best critiques I'd ever gotten from a contest and clearly helped me get it right!

  5. Congrats on your first sale AND a grandbaby!! Life is good.

  6. Yes, it is. :D Thanks Rebecca

  7. Sandra, thanks so much for visiting my blog. I am honored :)

  8. It's been my pleasure. Hopefully, we'll meet again another WPA, perhaps. :D