Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Liza interviews Nikki Barrett about her book On the 12th Date of Christmas

Today, I'm interviewing Nikki Barrett and since she's been suffering from headaches I'm going to try to be on my best behavior.

Peep Rep: Like that'll work.

Liza: *swats Peep Rep on his head* With Nikki. 

Peep Rep: Just for that I'm going on strike!

Liza: Good. It will make my job easier. Now let's give Nikki a warm welcome...no clapping, she has a headache. Just smile at her.

Nikki: Wow, what a smiling group...although it's a bit creepy. Have they been fed?

Liza: I've no idea. I would ask Peep Rep, but he went on strike.

Nikki: What for?

Liza: For being annoying.

Nikki: He went on strike for being annoying? That doesn't make any sense.

Liza: Doesn't matter. We are here to interview you. Sit down on my comfy couch, and I will gently interview you. Just so you know, I have sent Foxlike News to a fake news site, which they are now reporting as real news on TV, so they shouldn't be breaking in during our conversation.

Nikki: I think they actually did that recently.

Liza: Yep. And they learned nothing from their first mistake, because I sent them back to the same site, and they are repeating their error yet again. But enough about them, let's talk about you. 
How does your family feel about your writing and you being an author?

Nikki:  Everyone is very supportive! My husband and I plot together, he edits, he's done covers, he tells people about my books....one of his co-workers, who is now retired, calls me a world famous author every time he sees me. 

My dad has told people at his work about my books and I now have a huge fan base from there....everyone in my family is great about it!

In fact, we've been going through some rough times lately...this summer has been hell, to say the least. I'm a stay at home mom who writes while my four-year-old goes to preschool in the morning. I told my husband recently I was thinking about going to work part time to get us back on track.
You know what he told me?

He told me to focus on my writing, and get where I want to be with it. Yeah, talk about supportive!

Liza: Oh dear...Nikki, your family's not real, is it?

Nikki: Of course, they're real.

Liza: No, the signs of delusion are all there. The perfect husband, the giant fan base, supportive parents, and a husband who plots, edits, creates covers, and promotes your book, plus demands you not return to work, but stay home and write your fabulous books.  These aren't real people, these are fictional people you've fallen in love with, and who wouldn't?  They're so helpful and supportive!

Nikki: No, these are real people! My father, my husband, and my 4yr old. You cannot make them disappear, because they are real. But if you want to talk about delusions, let's start with your Peep Rep!

Liza: Okay, I can see this is a sensitive issue,  so let's move on with my questions. 
If you had to live on a deserted island with one author, who would it be?

Nikki: Damn.....why can't Keith Urban be an author? Wink. LOL...Um.....It'd be kinda cool to live on an island with R.L. Stine. I'd love to have some book plotting sessions with him. Not for romance stories, of course. LOL 

Liza: Yeah, I'm not getting a romantic vibe off Stine. More like creepy horror plot. 

Since we're delusional, let's make Keith Urban an author. Because he's such delicious eye candy.
And not creepy in the least. He writes music, so he can be a musical author. I vote we take Keith.

Nikki: Hold on. Who invited you?

Liza: Hey, I got Keith qualified for the journey. It's either both of us, or creepy Stine. Your choice.

Nikki: As much as I enjoy R. L. Stine's books....Keith is my choice. And you might be tagging along, but be warned, I do not share very well....so hands off my Keith!

Liza: Yeah, that's gonna happen. What part of your book was the hardest to write?

Nikki:  Honestly? I struggle with the sex scenes the most, for various reasons.

Liza: I bet time with Keith on a deserted island will improve our sex scene writing skills. Will your delusional husband be okay with Keith?

Nikki: My husband is not delusional NOR a delusion. Besides, he told me that if the chance ever came along, he would let me have a night with Keith since I've been infatuated with him longer than I've known my husband.  So there!

Liza: Now I'm certain you've made him up. Turns out we have a lot in common.

Nikki: I'm not delusional.

Liza: Me either. Also, we began publishing around the same time, and as pantsers, our characters often surprise us. My biggest surprise was in one book (never to be published) where my heroine's first boyfriend is a pornographer. None of the critters liked him at all, since he kept making porn movies of her and selling them to the rich men in the town. So I got her a new boyfriend, a really nice and cute doctor who treats her wonderfully only--

Nikki: I'm afraid to ask. Only what?

Liza: He turns out to be a woman. I was shocked. So was my heroine. I really like this story, but I doubt I'll ever publish it. It's a wee bit disturbing.  So what's the biggest shocker your characters ever pulled on you?

Nikki: That's easy. Jameson, from the Love and Music In Texas series decided he didn't like the idea of him being a bad guy....and he still never lets me forget my original plans for him. I love him dearly, but he needs to get it over it now. It worked out for him!

Liza: Characters can be so difficult. So let's talk about the story you have coming out: On the 12th Date of Christmas.  How'd you/your muse come up with this story?

Nikki: On the 12th Date of Christmas is Robin Sorenson's story. For those who have read Secret Santa Wishing Well, know her as Cheyenne's good friend. She baby sits the kids while Cheyenne works, and she's one smart gal. Readers have been asking for her story.  

My husband helped me with the idea of the story, as I couldn't come up with the idea for some time. So we sat down and planned out ideas. 

Liza: Your husband...I see. So he's your muse now.

Nikki: No, he's my husband, my real, live, wonderful husband.

Liza: Of course, he is. *Rolls eyes*
Describe the hero in five words.  

Nikki: Sweet. Loving, understanding, funny,  young

 Liza: Weird. And the heroine?

Nikki: Strong. Loyal. Brave. Friendly.  Bold

Liza: That's interesting. If you had asked me to tag the descriptions to the characters, I would have reversed them.

Nikki: The hero I described is 7 yrs old.

Liza: Makes a lot more sense now.
Who's your favorite character in the book & why?

Nikki: Oooh. Hard choice! Of course, seven year old Ben stole my heart again....but I love Robin, too. She has gone through a lot in the last year and has done so much to overcome her situation.

Liza: What's your favorite line in the story?  

Nikki: Movies come to an end, we've only just begun.

 Liza: I like it.
What event occurred in your life that has influenced your novels?

Nikki:  There's many, actually! I've related to the characters in Secret Santa because I've become fairly jaded in the past few years. I've missed that Christmas magic I used to know. 

Liza: Me too. It's gotten so commerical now. Which is really hard when money is tight. 
So let's check out this book, something even I can actually afford to buy!


After being mugged, Robin Sorenson is left shaken and her spirit in humanity broken. Worse, she’s not sure how to deal with the new anxieties or who to confide in since she’s always preached to pick oneself up and move on. Yeah, she’s been the go to girl when anyone’s had problems.

Christmas is coming, and her belief in magic and miracles has faded. 

Then Jonas comes back.

Jonas Aimes made a mistake. A big one, when he walked away from Robin a year earlier. He’d loved her, always had and still does, but his desire to please his aging and strict parents took precedence. Back from the overseas internship they’d struggled to get him in, he plans on winning Robin back. What he didn’t count on was discovering the shell of the vivacious woman he’d loved.


Remembering her love of Christmas, Jonas pulls the holiday heartstrings. What? All is fair and love and war. Right?

Twelve days, Twelve Dates.

Robin is speechless when Jonas not only refuses to leave her alone, but dares her to accept his cheesy holiday themed challenge. Twelve dates to give him a chance to prove he loves her and is never leaving her again.

But in the season known for miracles can Robin find the magic needed to open her heart and faith once more...or will she forever wonder about the ghost of the Christmas past that could have been?


He took her hand in his as he reached for the keys with his other hand.
       “Why are we at a closed ice skating rink, Jonas?” He heard the wonder in her voice.
       “Because we're going skating, silly.” He jingled the keys, searching for the correct one to unlock the door.
       “How did you-”
       “Hey. I'm in with Santa now, remember? I can't divulge all my secrets.”
       Her soft laughter and a squeeze to his hand warmed his heart, despite the icy chill around him. “I haven't been ice skating in years.”
       “Hmm. Out of practice? So if we were to race, I'd have a chance?” Jonas fingered the edge of her scarf, twirling the fringed ends with two fingers.
       “Oh please, you don't skate.” Robin scoffed. “Do you?”
       He laughed. “I love how you were so certain, then all of a sudden you had to question it. Maybe we should go in, lace up and I'll show you some moves.”
       “This I have to see!” Robin raised a perfectly arched brow.
       “Let's get to it, little lady.” Jonas closed and locked the door behind him. The lights buzzed as they came on, lighting up the place. With a flick of a few switches, everything would be ready for them soon. He hadn't been in here for quite some time, let alone when it was empty. This would be fun. He couldn't wait to get out on that ice. Hopefully, he wouldn't be leaving here with any sprained body parts. He wasn't about to let on to Robin that he was very rusty at this. He stifled a laugh. Anticipation shot through his veins. He'd take this challenge.
       Robin was the first to get on the ice. As he finished lacing up, Jonas watched her gracefully move around. She went slow and steady at first, obviously testing out her balance. She made a small spin and as he caught sight of her face, he noticed the way her eyes lit up and her smile reached them.  It would take more than these fun moments to show her who he'd become, and they would get to that. Communication definitely was a key. There were so many things unsaid, and while he knew they had to be spoken, he wondered how much of it would ruin the moments they shared.
       Doesn't matter. It all has to be done. The good and the bad.
        “Are you stalling?” She teased, making another loop. She seemed at ease.
       Jonas pointed to himself in mock horror. “You did not just accuse me of stalling.”
       “Oh, but I did. So come on out here and strut your stuff, before I accuse you of all talk and no action.”  Another loop, faster this time. That woman taunted him.
       Jonas growled and tightened the last of the laces and eased himself onto the ice. “All talk and no action, huh? Watch this.”  Gathering momentum and hoping for no epic fails, Jonas sped across the rink. Okay so far, so good. A little wobbly, but not as hard as he imagined.  Then he got stupid, turned his head to flash her a smile and came crashing into the wall. “Ooph!” he shouted, landing on his ass.
       Robin covered her mouth with her hand. She tried her hardest not to let the laugh out, and failing miserably. She skated over to him and held a hand out.
       “It's not that funny.” He grumbled, rubbing his sore backside. The corners of his lips twitched.  He couldn't keep the smile away.
       “Not a bad start, until you got cocky.” She teased. She helped him to his feet and he towered over her. He slid his arms around her waist and pulled her closer.
       “Your fault for showing off.” He teased, leaning in closer. He wanted to kiss her senseless and steal her breath away. That would get her to quit laughing at his attempts at being cool when it came to skating.
       “I think not. I won't take the blame for this one.” She said quietly. He cupped her face, loving the way she smiled at him. He ran a finger along her jaw, loving the sensations he felt while having her near.
       “Then take the blame for this.” Jonas closed the gap between them and kissed her.

Space Rep: Oh that was fabulous!

Liza: Yes it is. Shame that Nikki has declared you a delusion.

Space Rep: Oh no! *pops out of existence.*

Nikki: That was mean.

Liza: *shrugs* He'll be back. However since he's not here to provide links and your bio, you are need to drop them in for me.


Nikki Lynn Barrett lives in Arizona with her husband and son. She's an avid reader, a dreamer, and loves everything about books. She runs a book blog, an online used bookstore, and writes various genres of romance. Nikki can also be found outside with her camera when a storm is near, snapping photo after photo. Her dreams of becoming a writer started when she was young, when she started writing books in one subject notebooks by the fifth grade. The Secret Santa Wishing Well is her debut book. You can visit Nikki's site at: www.nikkilynnbarrett.blogspot.com for more information. She is working on her next book. Nikki would love to hear from readers. Email her at nikkilynnbarrett@yahoo.com


Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/6583655.Nikki_Lynn_Barrett


@Stormgoddess925 on Twitter



  1. What a great interview and excerpt! I hope you feel better Nikki. Tweeted.

  2. A lovely excerpt and an interesting interview. I enjoyed both.

  3. Great interview! I'm reading this novel now and loving it :)
    I've shared.

  4. Lol! So much fun and Nikki is a great sport. Congrats on the release.

    1. Nikki is a very good sport. She presented a picture of sweet looking guy holding an adorable little girl this morning as proof her vamily was real. Could have come from Shutterstock...

    2. Uhh, Liza.....he was holding a little boy, not girl :P

  5. Excellent interview and excerpt.

  6. Still laughing over your 'not real' family, Nikki. Great interview! Your books sound amazing. Can't wait to read it.

    1. LOL I think everyone is getting a good laugh over it :) Thanks Marianne!

    2. If it's true, then we need an intervention. Trust me, laughter only makes a delusional nut nuttier. I know!

  7. So, I'm not real, huh? I work all day to feed my family and care for my wonderful wife, yet I'm not real? I defy that YOU are real! I believe that this blog is written by 100 trained monkeys and an evil troll wielding a leather whip, yelling at them to keep working if they ever want a banana again...... not real...... =P

    1. Okay, this doesn't sound anything like the wonderful man who edits your books, makes your covers & becomes your muse.(To be honest, he's terrifying me.) Make him nice again Nikki. I liked him nice!

    2. This response is directed at Monkey #73 *You know which one you are*. You liked me better when I was nice? I thought you liked me better when I didn't exist! I need to find that troll and tell him to spank his monkey. ........ wait, that has another meaning, right?

  8. What a fun interview! Liza has all the best posts! Thanks for sharing your book Nikki. I'm also a little jaded about the holidays. Too commercial for me!

    1. It's sad that it's become that way....that's why I started my Christmas story, and it evolved into more. Thanks for stopping by Melissa!

    2. Many years ago, one of my relatives told me they wanted a really expensive TV or nothing at all. I said, "Done!" They smiled triumphantly until I added. "Nothing at all, I can afford that." I stuck to it. The person got nothing at all from me, and I've never regretted my decision. In fact, I thought it so freeing, that I given the same thing each year. Needless to say, she doesn't talk to me anymore..

  9. This is one of the prettiest covers I've seen in a long time. It makes me smile. Tweeted

    1. I agree Nancy. The cover is less glamour and more like a real moment of happiness. Hey Nikki, did your talented husband made this cover? (I'm conceding Nikki really does exist...he as my monkeys terrified).

    2. Actually, no. He didn't make this cover....Carey Abbott did :) Robert has made the Love and Music in Texas covers so far :)

  10. Thanks Nancy! I love the cover, too! I've been given amazing covers this year! Thanks for stopping by!

  11. Well, I missed yesterday...too much to do! But I love the delusional aspect of the author...what a boon to your creativity! LOL

    1. Hold on, Nikki, she might be complimenting my delusional brain not yours. Can we get a clarification? Because photographs and terrifying messages has come forth to suggest Nikki really does have a supportive family and thus may not be delusional, only very lucky.

  12. Fantasical Interview, Nikki! And... I love your hubby! NO, no. Not like that, girlfriend. Love his attitude about you staying home and focusing on writing. What an awesome guy for an awesome gal ;)

    1. Yes, now that she's convinced me he is real, I'm sick with envy

    2. hahah...thanks Melisa. He is awesome, and I know how you meant it LOL! :P


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