Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Linda Hall: Happy to be here, too!

It's exciting for me to be a part of this group! For those of you who don't know me - read on,

Three interesting tidbits about me:

1. I like chocolate, but I don't love it. I know, I know - no romance author worth her salt shuns chocolate! But, I can take it or leave it. My candy drug of choice is sugar; Peach Fuzzies, Licorice Allsorts, Maynard's Wine gums. I especially love Bassett's Jelly Babies. I feel fortunate that in Canada we can get all of these candies imported from the UK.

2.I write out the first drafts of my novels by hand. Am I crazy or what? But, yes, I do. I have tried writing first drafts right onto the computer and can't get my mind to think straight. I was a journalist before I was a novelist and about a thousand years ago I studied shorthand. So, my first drafts are done in coffee shops, in shorthand, on unlined paper using ultra-fine Sharpies in bright colors. I write them very fast and very big. Then I get home and transcribe them onto the computer using my voice recognition software. I have heard over and over again to "trust your process.' And, I've come to understand that this - crazy as it is - is my 'writing process.'

3.I have a love affair with the sea. For me a vacation isn't a vacation unless swimming in the ocean is involved. My husband and I have a sailboat and most of a part of every summer is spent living aboard. We have gotten up close to whales, we have sailed beside dolphins, and we see seals all the time. There is just something about the wide expanse of salt water that draws me. Last year we sold our 28' sailboat and bought a 34' one that now resides in Maryland. This coming May we plan on sailing it up the east coast to Maine and then into Canada where we live. My husband and I are looking forward to the adventure.

All About Me:
1.  How I got my first name?
I'm not named after anyone, my mother simply liked the name Linda. I was born in 1950 and Linda was THE most popular name that year. There were always more than one "Linda" in all of my school classes. Now, when I meet someone named "Linda" I know exactly how old she is. Tee hee. Maybe someday mothers will begin naming their baby girls "Linda", but for now the name is reserved for those of us 'of a certain age.'

2.  How I pick my characters' names, good guy and bad.
I once read that mystery author Ruth Rendell looks through maps and lexicons for her character's names, rather than phone books. I do that for last names. First names are odd ducks. Sometimes I'll wake up in the middle of the night knowing my character's name. Sometimes I have to try out dozens before one 'feels' right.
All About my Books:
1. How I stumbled into writing suspense...
I have always loved suspense and romantic suspense. I grew up reading Nancy Drew. Then I graduated to Phyllis Whitney, Victoria Holt and Mary Higgins Clark. I couldn't get enough of those authors. I began my writing career writing mysteries and thrillers for Christian publishers. A few years ago I decided to branch out and add a bit more 'romance' to my suspense, and am now, as you know writing for Steeple Hill Love Inspired Suspense. I'm loving being here.

2.  My favorite suspense book I wrote and why...
Probably SADIE'S SONG.
Sadie lives within a very abusive Christian marriage. Her on-the-church-board Christian husband is both verbally and physically abusive, and Sadie spends her life trying to hide it. I'm very proud of that book, and it's currently in a number of women's shelters in the U.S. and Canada.

All About Others:
1.  My favorite author is..
This depends on when you ask me. A year ago I would have a different favorite author than today. I'm constantly reading, and my favorite authors keep changing. I LOVE romantic suspense and read great gobs of it

2.  My best writing friend is...
I hang with a local group of romance writers. Barbara Phinney - on this blog - is a part of that group. We have great fun when we get together for our yearly retreats.

3.  My most loyal fan is...
My husband. He is my first reader, my first editor and my critique partner. Everything that I send to my editor goes through him, first. He is a voracious reader in his own right, and reads probably a novel a week. He likes thrillers.
Finally, I'm excited about this blog because...
I'm hoping it will be a good way to connect with readers! I look forward to being a part of this great community. What great fun we're all going to have. I understand there's going to be prizes and giveaways - all sorts of neat things! I hope you're as excited as I am.



Ramona Richards said...

Aweesome, Linda. Your "tidbits" make me want to read your books, and I love that you do your first draft in shorthand. (And I'm not crazy about chocolate either, shhh.)

Looking forward to more.

PamelaTracy said...

I loved the tidbit about your name! I'm a Pamela, not that many anymore, and definitely an 'era' name. When I started college, I worked in a restaurant, and we had White Pam, Black Pam, and Tan Pam. I got to be Tan Pam because White Pam was really, really white. I've been a schoolteacher for the last 20 years and can only think of one Linda student. But, then, I can only think of one Pamela student. Ramona, I see you've posted. No Ramonas in my classroom, but I love the Ramona books.

EllenToo said...

I never had too many Linda's in the classes I taught but I had 4 Linda's as fellow teachers who would probably be your age. Not too many Pamela's either.
Linda- "Shadows at the Window" is in my TBR pile. Happy to have you here.

Linda Hall said...

It's so lovely to be here, too! Well, in a few minutes I'm off to the coffee shop with my paper and my sharpies!

Linda Cacaci said...


I love your Love Inspiried books. I can't wait for your third release in the Shadow series. They are wonderful.
By the way, I am also a Linda and I was also born in 1950. I was born on November 12, 1950. Isn't it a small world?
Linda Cacaci