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Today’s guest is Annette Bower, who is here to talk about her book MOVING ON — A PRAIRIE ROMANCE. You guys are in luck, because not only will you get to know Annette and her book, but if you comment you are also eligible to win a $25 gift card to All Romance eBooks. The more of her tour stops you visit the greater your chance to win, but the tour ends today so get comfy and read the way through to find out how you can increase your odds. (BTW, the host with the most comments also gets a prize, so, well, you know … LOL). Okay, enough of my blabbering. Let’s meet Annette!

Welcome, Annette! I always like to dig a little into each author’s bio so readers can get to know them a little better. While snooping in yours, I was impressed to see you’ve finished a couple of 5k walks (and you didn’t come in last, as you pointed out, LOL!). What sparked your interest in training?

Good morning Sarah. Thank you for “snooping.”  I have walked a great many km/miles in my life. I am a walker. In 2011, the universe, serendipity, coincidence brought the Royal Road Race into my life. I picked up the poster for my son. I assumed it was a bicycle race. He informed me that it was a sanctioned run/walk race. He and my daughter-in-law signed up. I thought why not? Sort of like I do many things in my life. Why not experience a race event? I knew I could complete the race and hoped not to come in last. After that we all signed up for another event. But they have gone on to do more physically challenging events, while I’m pleased to participate again in the same two races as last year.  I train in two ways. My preference is with my friend and she and I walk around Wascana Lake. We leave our homes and walk and talk to and around the lake and back. It is approximately 4 miles or 6.43 km. The other is walking with my pace music, but I get distracted and stop to take pictures or read a plaque or look in a storefront.

I always feel fantastic and so much more inspired to write after I exercise. You must come home from those treks absolutely bursting with ideas. Indeed, you’ve written a lot of shorter pieces. What prompted you to write a novel?

Writing novels has always been my goal. Writing short stories was my way to learn the craft and it gave me the opportunity to receive validation of my writing progress through various publications.  However, I have learned to enjoy the challenge of distillation in writing of various lengths.

I think it’s *so* much harder to write short — that must have been a fantastic training ground! In MOVING ON (A Prairie Romance) your main characters have each experienced great personal tragedies. How were you able to dig into those emotions so you could bring them to your readers into such an authentic way?

During my first year of nursing education, I was put on probation because my empathy scores were too high to become a professional who could distance herself. I learned to damp down my empathy during professional involvement but in writing I can explore all of the feelings I’ve shared with others.

I can honestly say I’ve never heard of such a thing. It makes sense, but *wow* what a reason to put someone on notice! LOL. And what a great outlet writing must be for you. What might readers be surprised to learn about the plot or characters of Moving On-A Prairie Romance?

Even though I lived at Regina Beach for years, many readers who have read this book do not recognize any of my characters because they truly are fictitious.

I wonder what it would be like to read a story, wondering if you or someone you know might be in those pages? LOL. Let’s have some fun with Moving On-A Prairie Romance. What’s the first sentence?

“Anna Jenkins pushed her foot on the brake as her hatchback picked up speed on the hill.”

Right in the action! *grin* What’s your favorite line in the book?

“Will you consider being a part of this adventure, my Rock Queen?”

LOL! There’s a line if I’ve ever heard one. How about an excerpt … three sentences long! Yep, that’s it. Three!

“Herman, put your teeth in! We have company.”

The newspaper rose. A slight hand reached for a glass on the side table. When it lowered again, a gleaming white smile flashed.

OMGosh, the “put your teeth in” made me LOL! What a great excerpt! Which scene of Moving On-A Prairie Romance was most difficult for you to write? Why?

The most difficult scene was between Nick and his father, when Nick’s father discovered that Nick wanted to return to active duty.  No parent wants to see their child in harm’s way.

Oh, gosh. My kids are still little and I can imagine how hard it would be to hear. Which scene would you most like to experience for yourself?

I’d like to be in the dance scene and have Nick lead me in the steps.  I enjoy dancing but my husband and I tried ballroom dancing lessons and failed the introduction level. I’d like to be able to follow an experienced dancer and not step on his toes.

LOL! I didn’t know a person could fail, but I can assure you I’d be right there on the sidelines with the dunce cap on. *grin* What inspired the title of MOVING ON — A PRAIRIE ROMANCE?

The manuscript went through many different working titles. When XoXo Publishing ™ was to the point of developing the cover, we brainstormed a title. Moving On became obvious but the Prairie Romance came from a writer in my writing group. She always referred to it as a Prairie Romance. I thought it would make a good subtitle. However, as often as I enter it in the keyboard, I think the next title will be short.

LOL! You have such a great sense of humor, Annette. What are  currently working on?

I will have another novel published late in 2012 through Soul Mate Publishing. It will be a blend of genres, women’s fiction and series length novel romance.

I won an opportunity to enter into a contest through the 2012 Brenda Novak auction. I think I’ll try a mystery.

Oh, I love mysteries! I hope you get to enter, and best of luck if you do! Let’s dig in a little with your featured title.

MOVING ON — A PRAIRIE ROMANCE | blurb

Anna is a mysterious woman that has just moved to Regina Beach. The residents of the small town know everyone’s business and they are very interested in discovering Anna’s secrets. Nick was a Sergeant in the Canadian Army, doing active duty until a horrific accident sent him home to recover. He helps Anna feel safe and comfortable in her new environment, just as he has always done for his men in strange, dangerous places. Meanwhile, he focuses on preparing for his future physical endurance test to prove that he is capable of returning to active duty.

Anna doesn’t talk about her past, and Nick doesn’t talk about his future therefore she is shocked to discover that his greatest wish is to return to active duty. She won’t love a man who may die on the job again. Intellectually, she knows that all life cycles end, but emotionally, she doesn’t know if she has the strength to support Nick.

XoXo Publisher ™ | Amazon | ARE | Bookstrand

ANNETTE BOWER | bio

Annette Bower lives and writes in Regina, SK Canada. She is an author of many short stories published in anthologies and magazines in Canada, the United States and the United Kingdom. She explores women in families, women in communities and women at the beginning and end of love and their quest for love. She pursues the writing craft in workshops, conferences, Writing with Style, Banff Centre for the Arts, Victoria School of Writing, Sage Hill Writing Experience, the Surrey International Writing Conferences and the Romance Writing of America Conferences.

When she isn’t writing she walks or bikes around the streets and parks in her neighborhood imagining complex worlds behind seemingly ordinary events.

Her first contemporary romance, Moving On A Prairie Romance is published by XoXo Publishing™ a division of Ninni Group Inc.

WEBSITE | BLOG | FACEBOOK

MOVING ON — A PRAIRIE ROMANCE | excerpt

[Nick] hopped out, hurried around to her door, opened it, grasped her hand, and pulled her to her feet. He gently pushed against the small of her spine, propelling her forward. His breath fanned the tight fluff on the back of her neck as they reached the steel double doors. He reached around her and opened the door to music. Country music.

He pulled her onto the dance floor into a fast waltz. Her feet automatically followed his measured steps. He felt the tension ease out of her body. She looked around. She even leaned her head back in response to a spin, exposing a wonderful slender white neck. He quelled an urge to lean forward and kiss the column down to her seductively exposed collar bones. He felt himself react, again. Maybe he was the beast that she spoke of. Keeping track of his left lower limb became a non-issue while he focused on another part of his anatomy or he’d embarrass himself in front of his neighbors. The music ended. He kept his hand firmly around her waist as he propelled her to the makeshift bar.

“Beer?”

“Yes.” She hesitated as if she was searching the jargon of a memory. “Draft?”

He handed her the dew-covered glass which she pushed into her lips. He clung to his bottle and tipped it evenly, watching her through half-closed eyes. She was an enigma. Pain and party. Her face had shown shadows of solemnity and joy of life.

He wanted to know her, but at the same time, not know her. Her pain both called to and repelled him.

**GIVEAWAY**

Annette is offering a generous tour-wide giveaway of a $25 gift card to All Romance eBooks, and the tour ends today so you won’t even have to wait a long time to find out if you’ve won! *grin* The winner will be randomly chosen from among all comments, so be sure to say hello to Annette here, then zip over to her other tour spots for more chances to enter to win. I’d like to thank you all very much for being here. I hope you’ve enjoyed the visit with Annette as much as I have, and wish you all a wonderful start to your week!

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