Saturday, May 14, 2011

Calen: My Soul to Keep Time Travel With Rie McGaha

Sorry it took so long to announce the winners on my blog. Health problems had me down for a bit, but I wanted to let everyone know who won each. The winner for the Calen tourm chosen by RANDOM.ORG is commenter #6, Mary Jo. Congrats and enjoy your prize.

I want to welcome Rie McGaha to My Odd Little World. Before we get to the interview questions, could you give us a brief bio to get us started?

I'm the mom of 12, Nana of 34, with #35 due any day and #36 due in Sept. Although I was born and raised in Northern California (and I do mean Northern, about 80 miles south of the Oregon state line), I have lived in SE Oklahoma since 1999. I absolutely love it here in the Kiamichi Mountains. We have lakes, rivers, trees, mountains and the outdoor life is perfect for me. My family and I spend most of the year on our boat out on the lake. With very short, mild winters, and long hot summers, this is the ideal place for the outdoor life. I also work to rescue abused, abandoned, and neglected animals, and to educate people on the benefits of spay/neutering, besides the main benefit of reducing the pet population and therefore reducing the number of animals in need of rescue. I also love to bake, sew, garden and spend time with my grandchildren.

The Writer

What is the best thing about being a writer? The worst?

The best thing is being able to work from your bed in your jammies while watching TV – the worst thing is being able to work from bed in your jammies while watching TV! It makes you lazy!

Do you bring your own life experiences to your writing? Your own personality? If so how?

I do sometimes. I've put a lot of living in my years, so I have a lot to draw on. I also like to put at least one older couple who find love in each of my stories.

What fuels you as an author to continue to write?

Interesting question. Lately, I've had a bad case of writer's block. Our house burned down in June 2010 and I often joke the only fatality was my muse.

If you could share one major writing tip, to help other writers in their quest for publication, what would it be?

Know how to market yourself. Writing a book and getting published is the easy part. I had no idea the amount of time that I would be putting into marketing. It takes up the bulk of my time.

If you could write in any other genre what would it be, and why?

My favorite saying is, "Genres? We don't need no stinking genres!" I write in so many different genres, I don't think there's one I haven't written in, well except for sci-fi – I don't watch it and I don't read it – so I don't write it.

Do you plan all your characters out before you start a story or do they develop as you write?

Depending on the story, it can be both. Sometimes the characters are screaming in my head and I know them as well as I know myself, other times they reveal more about themselves as the story progresses.

Let’s talk characters. If you could cast an actor/actress for your leads, who would they be? Do you have someone in mind as you write your characters? What kinds of character aids do you use in your writing process?

I would love to see Timothy Olyphant as Calen, even if he can't go blond. As Arianna, I would want Mila Kunos if she would lighten her hair. No, I don't write my characters with anyone in mind, they are all individuals and I think it would be rude to try to make them conform to some preconceived idea. Character aids? Apparently none since I'm not sure what you mean!

The Person

What do you think is romantic? What does the word Romance mean to you?

The meaning of romance has changed as I've grown older. When I was younger it was the fairy tale of Prince Charming sweeping me away and living happily ever after. As a single mom, romance was a man who would come in and take care of everything, including me. As an older woman romance is getting my husband to rub my feet!

What type of music gets you dancing?

I'm an old time rock n roller. Gimme Bob Seger, Pink Floyd, Jimmy Buffett, The Rolling Stones, Strawberry Alarm Clock, Velvet Underground, Fleetwood Mac, Lynyrd Skynyrd, ZZ Top, or any of those who came along prior to 1985!

You’re having a dinner party, what five people would you invite?

Other than my family, Timothy Olyphant (I've got such a crush on him), James Patterson (my favorite author), GA Hauser (a fabulous author and my friend), Candi Duncan (my friend and fellow dog rescuer), and C.H. Scarlett, (friend and awesome author).

What’s the craziest thing you’ve ever done to figure out a book?

Hmmm…Blood Line came from a dream my husband had, and when I was stuck on Calen, my youngest son, Cody told me how to fix the problem – but that's about as crazy as I get these days.

Tell us about your favorite character from your books.

That's an easy one, and even though I have a little crush on all my heroes, and love my heroines, Caleb Jordan from Deep Within My Heart is my favorite. He's hunky, an alpha male, and he's a pirate. (Shh, don't tell my other characters, there'll be a fight.)

Was there someone instrumental in inspiring you as a writer?

I would have to say my mother. When I was about ten she saw this ad in a magazine for a writing test and writing academy so she sent away for the test and when it came, had me write for them, then sent it back. Of course, it was a way for them to try and convince my mom to send me to their writing academy when I was high school age. Even though I never went, that moment with my mom stayed with me.

Random Questions:

If you could create your own drink what would go in it and what would you call it?

I actually have my own drink, a few of them if truth be told! In the winter I like to make a cup of instant hot cider in a large mug and fill it up with Buttershots. It tastes like a caramel apple. I also like to get a bottle of apple wine, leave it corked and put it in a crock pot on low about half way filled with water, (not enough that it floats, or it will tip over). As the water heats, so does the wine and when it's the perfect temp, the cork will blow, then it's time to drink!

If your life were turned into a cartoon, what cartoon character would you want playing you?

Princess Tiana from The Princess & The Frog.

You have been locked in a mall and told you can get anything you want and when they open in the morning you won’t have to pay a single cent. What stores would you hit? Better question how would you haul away all your loot?

I would hit all the shoe stores (a girl cannot have too many pairs of boots), the leather shops (a girl can't have too many pairs of leather chaps or jackets), the Levi store (can't have too many pairs of 501's), and the gun store (a girl can never have enough weapons). Hauling it would be easy – I have a 4-wheel drive Ford F-150.

Do you have any animals? Do they influence your writing?

Ha! Yep, I have animals, both domestic and wild. I have 5 large dogs, 2 small breeds, 1 cat who is a big baby, plus chickens, cows, ducks, wild turkeys, deer, coyotes, squirrels, Cardinals, hummingbirds, Blue Jays and many others.

How much research do you do for your books? Have you found any cool tidbits in your research?

I do a lot of research for my historical books. I love American history and sometimes I get so lost in the research, I forget to write the story. When I was researching Deep Within My Heart, which is set against the war of 1812 and has the real life pirate, Jean Pierre Lafitte. I knew that Jean Lafitte & Pierre Lafitte were brothers and pirates but are often referred to as a single entity, I didn't know that there was a third brother, Henri, who much less is known about but he was apparently also a pirate, but kept a lower profile. I love finding out things like that because it gives me more things to dig for.

eBooks or print forever?

While I am forced to read e-books on a regular basis, when it comes to pleasure reading, give me a print book any day!

As a romance writer, we can see the passion in your work. Is there anything else, besides your writing that you are passionate about?

I hope I am passionate about everything I do. When the passion in your life is gone, life becomes a chore and it's easy to give up. I am passionate about my life, my children, grandchildren, dogs, etc. Life is passion.

Where can we find out more about you and your work?

I'm all over the web! But here are some of my more common links:

Rie McGaha's Links:




My Space:

You Tube:

Biker Or Not:

Manic Readers:

The Pagan & The Pen Book Reviews:

Man Of The Month:



And finally, have you got a sneak peek excerpt from your current work in progress you can share with my readers and me?

Right now I am in the middle of edits for book 2 of the My Soul To Keep Trilogy, this one is Caleb. (Release date July 17th)

"I love you," he whispered. "Whether you believe it or not doesn’t change the fact that it’s true. I love you, Amber. I want to marry you. I want to make a life with you, make babies with you, and grow old with you. All you have to do is say yes."

"Yes," she heard herself whisper.

"Do you love me Amber?"


"Will you marry me and have my children?"


He grinned. "Now there are some things you need to know about me. I can’t hold you to a promise if you don’t know the facts."

"Oh, crap, you’re a criminal!"

He laughed out loud. "No, I’m not a criminal! But it would be a lot easier to explain."

"Then what is it? Nothing could be that…You’re married?"

"No, I’m not married," he said, rolling his eyes.

"You’re bi?" He looked at her, confused at the meaning of her words. "Your bedroom door swings both ways?"

He looked at the bedroom door. "No, it only goes one way."

She laughed. "I mean you like to have sex with men and women."

He looked utterly confused then. "No. I’ve only had sex with women."

"Good," she said. "Not that I judge anyone, I just couldn’t see myself in that kind of relationship." He cocked his head, still confused, but let it slide. "So if you’re not a criminal, not married, and not bi, what else is there?"

He took a deep breath before he said, "I’m about five hundred years old."

She looked at him. "You’ve aged well. Botox?"

"What tox?"

She laughed. "What is it really? No more jokes."

He decided he would have to take another route in order to convince her. "I’m Caleb MacLean, born to the Clan MacLean in 1504…"

"Oh pah—leese," she said, shaking her head. "Do you think I haven’t seen Highlander?"

"I don’t know if you’ve ever seen a highlander other than myself…"

"Not a highlander, the movie Highlander. They made like six of them, plus the T.V. series. Everyone’s seen them."

"I haven’t seen them, but that’s not important. I am a highlander, my father and my older brother, of course. My mother was born in the highlands too, but she was of witch blood, half mortal, and she died when I was a baby. Calen and I didn’t find out until recently that her witch blood was handed down to the two of us."

"Okay, knock it off or I’m leaving." Amber scooted to the edge of the bed and began to dress. "I guess I should have asked you if you were insane."

"Amber, please don’t go. I need to explain this to you," he pleaded as he took her arm.

"Let me go!"

"No," Caleb said very calmly. "I want to explain it all to you so you’ll understand." He pushed his hair back out of his face. He could tell by the fire in her eyes that she wasn’t going to take this sitting down.

"If you don’t let go of me, I’m going to remove the very part of you that allows you to call yourself a man!"

He grinned then. He couldn’t help it; he loved her so much. "I can prove it to you," he said finally.

That stopped her short. "You can prove it? How?" She folded her arms across her chest and tapped her toe as she looked at him.

"Just give me one second to put some clothes on. I’m not doing this naked," he said and pulled on his jeans, slid into a T-shirt and grabbed his shoes. Then he grabbed her arm as she started to leave the bedroom. "You have to hold on to me," he said.

She looked at him cautiously and said, "You’ve got five minutes to prove it and then I’m outta here, bud!"

"That’s all the time I’ll need," he said, then pulled her to him. He slipped the necklace on over his head and felt the gold pendant began to warm against his chest. "Okay," he said as he took a deep breath. "I wish you’d just hear me out first instead of making me prove it to you. I wanted you to have a choice in the matter."

"Four minutes and counting," she said.

"Fine, don’t let go of me, no matter what, okay?" She remained silently impatient. "You have to promise me that much. Do not let go of me!"

"Oh, all right. I won’t let go of you."

He grinned again. Her cheeks were flushed and if looks could kill, he knew he would be dead at that very moment. "Hold on," he said as he put both arms around her and held tightly. He connected with the power in the necklace and thought of home, thought of the castle, thought of Ariella.

A feeling of vertigo gripped them both. Amber’s eyes went wide and she opened her mouth, but no words came out.

Oh, wow, I can't wait for this one. Thanks so much for being one of your stops on your Busy Author Blog Tour. I'm sure everyone will enjoy the interview, and thanks for offering one lucky commenter to the tour a chance to win one of your books. And I will add a prize for one commenter her at My Odd Little World-a hand beaded custom bead thong, made to the winner's specifications. My winner will be chosen using RANDOM.ORG

When Calen MacLeod begins having dreams of an ethereal beauty who beckons to him, he passes it off as just having an itch he hasn't scratched in a long time. But when he leaves on a journey to find her, following the directions she's given him in his dreams, he begins to doubt his sanity. And when he finds himself high in the Mackinaw Mountains in a secret fortress with unicorns and a pink and white castle, surrounded by women, each one more beautiful than the next, it's a fantasy no man would want to wake up from. But Arianna is the only woman for Calen.

The women of the Fortress have lived in peace, hidden away from the humans who tried to annihilate them all. But now a 500-year-old demon is out to destroy the women's matriarch, Ariella, and he'll stop at nothing to complete his mission. When Calen MacLeod shows up, he throws a wrench into Damon's plans. Never let it be said Damon isn't ready for anything, but when he kidnaps Arianna and takes her to modern day San Francisco, is he ready to meet Calen, who will stop at nothing to save his ladylove?


Calen dipped under the water to rinse and came up with a splash, and almost choked when he saw her standing at the water's edge, staring at him. Afraid to move a muscle, he feared she'd disappear if went toward her. He watched, mesmerized as she raised her hands and slipped the thin gown off her shoulders, letting it pool on the ground at her feet. He made a strangled sound as he drank in the sight of her nude body. Never had he seen anyone so beautiful. She took one slow, careful step at a time until she stood less than arm's length from him. Silent and still, he held his breath.

She reached out to him, placed her hand on his bare chest, and let her fingers slide beneath the water over his stomach. He placed his hand over hers and stepped into her. Reaching for her, he touched her silky hair, and let his fingers fall to her shoulders. She was so small, he thought as he looked down at her, the water that barely reached his ribcage rose to her chest, causing her breasts to float and making hard peaks of her nipples.

He grasped her around the waist and lifted her to him. Her hands laced around his neck, weaving through his hair as his mouth met hers and he drank. She opened to him with a sigh and wrapped her legs around his waist. His hands fisted in her hair, pulling her head back as he took the kiss deeper. The air sizzled and popped, the earth tilted, and the wind whipped the branches of the trees. Desire ripped through him, and he pressed her, demanded more from her, and she gave willingly.

His mouth bruised hers as their tongues mated, and his hands slid down her back, over her bottom, and he lifted her. The tip of his hardness pressed against her; with one movement he could be buried deep inside of her. A growl rose from his chest as he fought the urge to slam into her. He would not take her like this, not the first time. So he forced himself to break the kiss, to pull back, and sucked in a lung-full of air. She tilted her head as he looked into her eyes.

I will definitely be getting a copy of this soon! Thank you again for visiting, and hope you had fun with the questions.


  1. Hi Nancy! You're gonna get your wish, all my hosts for this release party will receive a copy of Calen! And for your readers, if they will go to they can cop a lil swag for themselves, and be sure to "follow" the blog to be entered to win the grand prize!

    Thank you so much for hosting me,


  2. Nancy you are so lucky! The excerpt for Caleb sounds great! Thanks Rie!

    beckerjo at verizon dot net

  3. the excerpt sounds awesome! for sure I havent had the pleasure of reading my soul to keep either deff be getting on it

  4. Oh, Timothy O! Yeah, he is a cutie, isn't he?

    Tracey D
    booklover0226 at gmail dot com

  5. This sounds really great. Great interview:)

  6. Great questions and answers as always, Nancy! Calen and Caleb sound like definite tbb's.
    Loved the excerpts. On my way to look into them now.Thanks!