Hello Readers! Today I bring you romance author Joan Swan. Joan is a triple RWA® Golden Heart finalist and writes sexy romantic suspense with a paranormal twist. Her debut novel with Kensington Brava, FEVER, released February 28, 2012. Her second novel, BLAZE, follows in October, 2012.
In her day job, she works as a sonographer for one of the top ten medical facilities in the nation and lives on the California central coast in beautiful wine country with her husband and two daughters.
Joan is here today to talk about how her every day life influences her writing. In addition, Joan is offering one (1) copy of her recent release, Fever, to a lucky commenter. Details for GIVEAWAY are below.
Please help me welcome Joan to That’s What I’m Talking About. Take it away Joan…
How daily life filters into my writing
We all see life through unique points of view. I call these filters and they could be explained as sunglass for your perspective on life. We usually have several shades of filters, but one that colors just about everything in our lives.
I’ve noticed my writing is heavily influenced by the filter which is colored by my work. By day, I’m a sonographer…a.k.a. I do ultrasound exams. Doesn’t sound too extreme, right? Normally, no. But I work at UCSF Medical Center, a teaching hospital ranked the 7th best hospital in the nation. Working at this type of facility is intense. Really, beyond intense. More like one of those things you have to experience to understand.
From assisting in the operating room with organ transplants to searching for bleeds in premature infants’ brains to checking for blood clots in the veins of drug addicts fresh off the street and still high, we see it all—child abuse, spousal abuse, rape victims, miscarriages, violent trauma, incredibly abnormal pregnancies and tons and tons of transplants. I’ve had to tell parents their unborn child’s heart is not beating too many times to count. I’ve had both infants and adults code while I’m scanning them. I’ve had transplant surgeons ask me if they can close a patient.
Our patients are suffering, angry, scared, mentally imbalanced and often experiencing the side effects of medications. Generally speaking, they’re not happy campers, and sonographers are not usually their favorite people. Our studies are long and sometimes uncomfortable for those in pain. If I’m not coaxing a sick patient into doing what I need them to do for an exam, I’m telling them to do it.
Combative patients are not uncommon. Neither are hallucinations. Or abusive swearing. Or death threats. I’ve been pushed, slapped, hit, kicked and spit on. The only reason I haven’t been bitten is because I got away first.
So…how does all this affect my writing?
I write real. I write real language, real people, real flaws. I write high stakes, high pressure. I understand tension and life and death decisions. I know how people in those situations cope and function and compensate…or don’t.
I also have a deep appreciation of health. Of life. Of family. And I find myself deeply grateful on a daily, if not hourly, basis. I understand the fear and insecurity and anxiety of long term illness and I’ve witnessed the pain of death. My characters tend to have the same respect for life’s fragility. And the range of emotion I experience through my work definitely transfers to my writing.
And then there are the people. I meet some real characters, from the woman with dementia casting evil curses on me in a foreign language (I only know because her interpreter was there) to the man who told me of the ghosts who sit in his room and walk outside his window—on the ninth floor. I couldn’t make this stuff up if I tried.
My “gritty-side” filter tends to make me unexcitable, good under pressure, easy going and confident. But it also pushes me toward the jaded side, and I often find myself distrustful and impatient in many situations.
What is one of the main filters you view life through? Unconditional love…stress…serenity…financial hardship…? How do you think it affects your life?
More about Fever
Dr. Alyssa Foster will admit to a bad boy fetish…
But when she finds herself face to face with a convicted murderer with determination for freedom and an eye on her as his get out of jail free card, Alyssa knows she’s in deep trouble…. Not just because Teague Creek is a prisoner desperate for freedom, but because his every touch makes her desperate for more.
A man with a life sentence has nothing to lose…
Teague Creek has one shot at freedom, but his plan to escape with a hostage develops a fatal flaw: Alyssa. On the run from both the law and deadly undercover operatives who know of his strange abilities, he needs to avoid trouble, but every heated kiss tells him the fire between them could be just as devastating as the flames that changed him forever.
GIVEAWAY: Thank you Joan for stopping by That’s What I’m Talking About. Joan is graciously giving away one (1) copy of Fever. To enter, leave a comment answering Joan’s questions about viewing life (above). Please leave your comments for Joan by Thursday March 15, 2012, at 9:00 PM EDT to be eligible for the contest. One entry per person, the winner will be selected from eligible entries using random.org. Contest is open to US and Canadian mailing addresses only; please leave your email address so the author can send you the book. In addition, all comments are eligible for tour grand prize of either a COLOR NOOK or KINDLE FIRE. More details and entry HERE. Thank you to Joan for this wonderful giveaway!
You can find Joan online at:
Be sure to stop back later today to read my review of Fever!