Thursday, November 10, 2011

Cowboy Crack: Interview with Vivian Arend

Vivian Arend is one of my favorite authors and I was thrilled when asked to review ARCs of the first two Six Pack Ranch books, coming out November 15th and January 10th. Here is the scoop on this addicting series:

The Coleman family has ranched in the Rocky Mountain House area of Alberta for generations. These modern day contemporary cowboy romance stories follow the current family members as they find both their place in the community and happy-ever-afters.

They are amazing, folks. I will be reading them again and again. I emailed a few questions to Viv, who despite her crazy schedule, was kind enough to answer my fangirl questions.

Brenda: I just finished the first and second book in the Six Pack Ranch series, and I have decided they are Cowboy Crack, and you're my dealer.

Viv: Hehehe. Lovely. I need to add that to my bio. :D

Brenda: Seriously, they were sexy, feel good stories that kept me up until 3 a.m. reading. I do have a few questions though that are burning in my brain.

Your cowboys are from Canada, but I notice they do still say "darling" for which I am eternally grateful. What is the difference between a cowboy from the U.S. and one from Canada?

Viv: The weather? I had someone tell em they were surprised-- they didn't think that Canadians talked like that, but it's all in the location. No, people in Toronto don't usually say darling. Neither do the white collar workers in Calgary, Alberta. But when you pop out in the country, you find that there's a certain overlap. Don't know if it's from working the land, or dealing with animals and needing to have that slightly slower pace...but there's a drawl and a sway to the vocal patterns that while the accents aren't as strong, there's a lot of similarities.
Listen to the people on rodeo circuit sometime and you'll notice the things that are different and the same.

Brenda: I know these stories were published a couple of years ago, but some changes were made. Was it more on the editing end, or did you expand them a bit? I know when I reread stuff I wrote a few years ago I want to add WAY too many changes and have to hold myself back.

Viv: They changed a lot. I added 20K words to each book, and I went through and changed every line I wanted to. Rocky Mountain Heat was the third or fourth book I wrote, so you can imagine I've learned a bit since then. Changed sentence structure to make it stronger, added emotions and reasoning where it had been skimpy--and this is why I think a lot of older books you shouldn't try to redo. Book two took less changes, since I wrote it after a year more experience.

And I have to say my editor at Samhain is simply amazing. She helped refine the story a lot as well.

Brenda: Cowboys seem to have quite a bit in common with wolves: the need to protect, that alpha stubbornness, loving a good fight, etc. I'm waiting for someone to write a Cowboy Crack version of a shapeshifter story. (Hint, Hint) Do you find when writing nonparanormal stories that you think "Man, that would be a great moment for him to be able to use wolf senses?"

Viv: Lol! I did have a few times I had to reword to make sure I stayed in the contemporary world. And I can never write the phrase "...he shifted..." without thinking of my paranormals. But overall, when I'm into the groove of writing, I just write what comes next, so it's not too difficult.

Brenda: I know we have a third book in this series coming our way, but will we get to read the other cowboy's stories as well? You let some HUGE details come forth along the way.

Viv: :D You like all the teasers? Again, they were simply a part of what was happening in the characters lives. But yes, all the brothers will have HEA eventually, and I've got plans for some of the cousins as well, if people like them.

Brenda: I'm looking forward to more Cowboy Crack from you, and I'll try to head off the withdrawal symptoms by reading other cowboy stories if I must:)

Viv: So glad you enjoyed them. Just putting the polish on the third book today. :D And December 1, I start writing book 4.

Book 1: Rocky Mountain Heat
Releasing November 15, 2011

Book 2: Rocky Mountain Haven
Releasing January 10th, 2012

Book 3: Rocky Mountain Desire
Releasing March 13, 2012

Viv has said on her website that there will be at least six books in the series.

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