I have a fabulous, award-winning author for you to meet today. And is she ever prolific! Author Dana Mentink has joined me today on my blog to share about her release and is offering a giveaway as well as talking about her process! Let’s jump right in…
Welcome to the blog, Dana! First, can you tell us a little about your novel?
Danger on the Ranch is a romantic suspense novel set on the California coast. Hero Mitch Whitehorse is a loner since he put his serial killer brother in prison, but things are about to change when Wade escapes and returns to settle the score.
Whoa…a serial killer brother!? You’ve got this Law & Order enthusiast’s attention. What was the inspiration for Danger on the Ranch?
I read a non fiction book about a woman who was married to a serial killer and had no idea what he was up to. I wondered what kind of impact that would have on a person’s psyche, and how they could triumph over that terrible situation.
I have to say, that thought has crossed my mind, too. But not for long enough to birth a story…I am intrigued!
Tell me, did you always want to be a writer? If not, what did you want to be when you were a child?
I wanted to be an Olympic ice skater, and a circus clown. Now I am a third grade teacher and a writer, so that wasn’t even close!
Circus clown? That’s different. I loved watching ice skaters when I was young! When did you first realize you wanted to be a writer?
I’ve always been a story teller. My fifth grade teacher really encouraged me to write fiction and I’ve been doing it ever since!
I know you know this…The beginning to end of putting a book out into the world is not all fun and games…as with pretty much any occupation, there are things we writers would rather pass off to someone else if we could. What part of the writing process do you dread?
Writing a synopsis is like crawling over glass. It’s just a nasty, ugly process to strip down a story to the bare bones. I usually wind up cleaning out closets and reorganizing the spice cupboard to avoid this job.
It can be a bear! Do you have any suggestions to help me become a better writer?
Read, read, read. The best writers are passionate readers.
I usually “set the mood” for my extended writing sessions…music included. What kind of music, if any, do you listen to when you write?
Not a thing. I need quiet or I can’t get anything on the page.
That seems to be the majority of writers I encounter…
Do you have a favorite time of day to write? What about a favorite place?
If I can sit in my garden, early in the morning and bang away on the keyboard, I’m a happy camper!
Tell us something about your newest release that is NOT in the blurb.
The series follows the men and women who work on or around the Roughwater Ranch. They are unofficial siblings. This was very special to write, as I am also a third grade teacher and I’ve seen so many “unofficial” families that are just as loving and caring as biological families. Our God given capacity to love one another is breathtaking.
What a wonderful thread to hold a series together!
Do you have any current projects you’re working on? Care to share?
I write three books a year for Love Inspired Suspense. I also write ebooks for Forget Me Not Romances, and I’m looking forward to clacking away on a mystery series idea.
Fabulous! That is just amazing how prolific you are! Thank you so much, again, for being on the blog and sharing about yourself and your books. Well…I won’t linger too long, I want to give my readers the chance to dive into the featured work, Danger on the Ranch, the excerpt, and the other wonderful things below! So, here goes…
Danger on the Ranch
A Roughwater Ranch Cowboys story
Her child’s life is on the line
After putting his serial killer brother in prison, former US marshal Mitch Whitehorse chooses a solitary country life—until his brother escapes. Now Mitch’s former sister-in-law, Jane Reyes, needs protection…for herself and the toddler she’s kept a secret. Mitch still isn’t sure of Jane’s innocence in his brother’s crimes, but to keep his nephew out of a killer’s grasp, trusting her is his only option.
Enjoy an Excerpt
The illogical notion trickled again through Mitch Whitehorse’s gut as he surveyed the late afternoon fog choking the windswept cove. Strange, since there was no sign of a weather front moving in through the mist. He fingered the scar that grooved his cheek, the rough patch oddly numb, a dead spot courtesy of his brother. The occasional blurred vision and migraines were an additional reminder of how close he’d come to dying at Wade’s hand.
But it wasn’t so much the pain of having his occipital bone crushed or the resulting symptoms that stuck in his mind, it was his brother’s smile. Even when Wade was led from the courtroom after the guilty verdict which would send him to prison for two lifetime sentences, he’d been smiling right at Mitch, a smile of pure evil, cold as the grave, unrepentant, undefeated.
Rosie, the big roan mare, shifted underneath Mitch, probably wondering why they were standing on a bluff in the numbing fog, staring out at the crawling Pacific instead of sheltering from the February wind. They’d spent a full day moving a herd of cattle from one pasture to another and chasing down an ailing cow to administer medicine. Straightening, Mitch ignored the twinge in his back, courtesy of his days as a US Marshal and the fact that he was now a hardworking cowboy staring forty in the face.
There it was again, the warning his instincts kept whispering in spite of what his eyes could see.
More About the Author
Dana Mentink lives in California where the weather is golden and the cheese is divine. Her family includes two teen girls (affectionately nicknamed Yogi and Boo Boo.) Papa Bear is retired from the fire department and he met Dana doing a dinner theater production of The Velveteen Rabbit. Ironically, their parts were husband and wife.
Dana is an American Christian Fiction Writers Book of the Year finalist for romantic suspense and a two time ACFW Carol Award winner. Her suspense novel, Betrayal in the Badlands, earned a Romantic Times Reviewer’s Choice Award. She is honored to write for Harlequin’s Love Inspired, Harlequin Heartwarming, and Harvest House Publishers. Besides writing, she busies herself teaching third grade. Mostly, she loves to be home with Papa Bear, Yogi, Boo Boo, a dog with social anxiety problems, a chubby box turtle and a feisty parakeet.
Connect with Dana and her books
Pinterest – https://www.pinterest.com/danamentink/
Twitter – @DanaMentink
Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/authordanamentink/
YouTube – Author Dana Mentink
Instagram – dana_mentink
Dana is offering a giveaway! She is offering a print copy or ebook of Danger on the Ranch (print in continental U.S. only). Please follow the instructions on the Rafflecopter below to enter:a Rafflecopter giveaway