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Author Interview/Giveaway: Thrill Ride by Julie Ann Walker

All my Redheads followers, I am SUPER freaking excited to have one of my favorite authors on the site today. She has let me intrude in her life and pick her brain. I hope everyone enjoyed it like I did!

Crystal- I’m going to start off by apologizing for what is about to happen…OMG! OMG! OMG! OMG! SQUEE!!! Alright I’m done with my fangirl moment. I am a really big fan (duh if you couldn’t tell from the teenage like freak out) of your Black Knights series. I absolutely love romantic suspense and yours is my fave. So I am super excited to have you on my blog today.
Julie- Wow! Thank you so much! I absolutely ADORE being a fave! ;-)  And I'm tickled to be back on Redheads Review It Better.  It's always a treat!

Crystal- For the readers who aren’t familiar with you, could you share with the class a little something about yourself?
Julie- Well, I live and work in the Windy City (Chicago for all the uninitiated) even though I was born a country girl in Oklahoma.  I like to think I've been fortunate enough to experience both lifestyles, rural and urban.   I love travel, cooking, wine, my ever-patient husband of 15 years, and mayonnaise.  Yes, you read that last thing correctly.  I crave the stuff.  And my waistline proves it.  ;-)  It's just so creamy and tangy and delicious!  I spend my days tethered mostly to my keyboard, trying to keep up with my characters and hold on tight as they drag me along on their many adventures.  And I'm a sucker for a good sci-fi movie, white chocolate, and really bad 80s hair bands.      

Crystal- Tell us how you came up with the Black Knights series.
Julie- I knew right from the beginning I wanted to write military-themed romantic suspense.  I volunteer at the USO, so I'm honored to spend time with soldiers and ex-soldiers.  And bearing witness to all that self-sacrifice, honor, and duty, I discovered I desperately wanted to tell their stories.  But there were a lot of military-themed romantic suspense series out there, so I asked myself what I could do to make my books stand out.  I'd always loved motorcycles, all that sparkling chrome, the throaty rumble of V-twin engine, the romance of the rebel out on the open road… *sigh*  Which is when I thought, "What if I combined the two?"  Voila!  Black Knights Inc. was born! 

Crystal- What is your writing process like? For example, are you a dive right in and deal with details as they come, or are you a planner?
Julie- Oh, I'm definitely a pantser.  I have a general idea of what the story will be about, but that's about it.  So when I sit down at my keyboard every day, the characters in my head tend to take over and drive the book along.  It's always a surprise for me!  And that makes it sooo much fun.

Crystal- Do you have a writing ritual you generally do while in the zone like listening to a playlist specifically for a book or characters you are writing? Or, are you are work around chaos and have a coffee IV drip going type of person?
Julie- I definitely have the coffee IV drip thing going.  I swill the stuff like it's going out of style.  LOL!  Otherwise, it's sort of a fly-by-the-seat-of-my-pants type situation.  I always set a daily page goal for myself, but how I get there differs each day. 

Crystal- How many books are you planning on having in the BKI series? (As many as you can squeak out the better.)
Julie- Ha!  Well, currently I visualize an even dozen Black Knights Inc. books.  But you never know, right?  More operators could always join the gang, necessitating their stories are told as well.  *wink, wink*

Crystal- Now on to some more fun questions--what do you like to do in your spare time?
Julie- I'm a total travel junkie.  And when I'm not on strict deadline, I tend to take off for parts unknown.  ;-)  My favorite quote is one from St. Augustine: "The world is a book, and those who do not travel read only one page."    

Crystal- Do you have a favorite food/meal/drink that you can’t live without?
Julie- As indicated earlier, that'd be coffee.  I pretty much live off the stuff.  And mayonnaise.  Coffee and mayonnaise make me a happy girl - though not when mixed together.  Not that I've ever tried it.  *shifty eyes*

Crystal- Do you have any secret talents like mad beat boxing skills or can your burp the whole alphabet while standing on your head?
Julie- I don't know if it's a talent, but if I listen to a song more than two or three times, I somehow unconsciously memorize the lyrics.  Seriously, no joke.  I know the words to, like, a million tunes.  My husband likes to joke and say, "Just think of all you could've accomplished if your brain wasn't crammed full of song lyrics.  You'd probably have found the cure for cancer!"

Crystal- Here is one I always like to ask all the authors on the blog…boxers or briefs. Hehe!
Julie- I'm a briefs girl all the way.  I like to, ehem, get an idea of what's behind door number one.  LOL!

Thank you again for taking time to stop by Redheads today on the day of love. I will be stalking patiently waiting for your email update about the next book.
Julie-Thank you so much for having me!  As always, it's been a thrill!

***We are giving away a copy of Thrill Ride to a lucky winner. (US & Canada residents only) To enter just follow along in the Rafflecopter thingy below!***


He’s Gone Rogue… 
Ex-navy SEAL Rock Babineaux is as Cajun as they come—spicy, sexy, and more than a bit wicked. But would he actually betray his country? Even his best friends on the special-ops Black Knights team aren't sure they can trust him. Now the target of a massive manhunt, Rock knows the only way to protect the team—especially his partner, Vanessa—is to run...

She Won’t Back Down… 
Rock might think he can outmaneuver them all, but he hasn't counted on how stubborn Vanessa Cordero can be. And she refuses to cut him loose. Sure, her partner has his secrets, but there's no one in the world she'd rather have by her side in a tight spot. Which is good because she and Rock are about to get very tight...

Julie Ann Walker is the New York Times and USA Today Bestselling Author of the Black Knights Inc. romantic suspense series. She is prone to spouting movie quotes and song lyrics. She'll never say no to sharing a glass of wine or going for a long walk. She prefers impromptu travel over the scheduled kind, and she takes her coffee with milk. You can find her on her bicycle along the lake shore in Chicago or blasting away at her keyboard, trying to wrangle her capricious imagination into submission. Look for the first four books in her fast-paced series: Hell On Wheels (August 2012) In Rides Trouble (September 2012) Rev It Up (October 2012) and Thrill Ride (April 2013). For more information, please visit or follow her on Facebook and/or Twitter @JAWalkerAuthor.

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