Friday, May 31, 2013

A Rare Vintage by Delancey Stewart.

Please join me in welcoming Delancey Stewart to the blog. She's stopped by to answer some of my quirky questions and tell us about her new release. 
More about A Rare Vintage after the interview! Don't miss it.

    Do you have any advice for aspiring writers? Is there anything you wish someone had told you?
o   Honestly, at the risk of sounding less than passionate, I wish someone had told me that this is a business. Yes, I have always romanticized writing, and yes, it’s the only thing I’ve ever wanted to do… but I’m not the type to cling to an artistic vision and cast myself as the starving artist for an eternity. If there’s a way I can make money doing what I love, I’ll find it. And I wish someone had explained that to me years ago – that it’s less about writing what you’re driven to write and more about writing what you’re driven to write in the context of what readers want to read today. 

·         Concerts can be very expensive, who do you think is worth the splurge?
o   Ooh, I love concerts. I’d like to see the Rolling Stones before they call it quits officially. I saw the Eagles at the Hollywood Bowl for my birthday last year, and that was pretty phenomenal. I also go out of my way to catch Super Diamond if they’re around. 

·         How do you choose your character names? Do you ever change their names mid-process?
o   That’s a good question. I have no idea. I can’t remember choosing a single one…they kind of just happen, I think. There’s a character in the book I’m working on now that is named Damon, and I’ve just begun to realize that in my head he now looks exactly like Ian Somerhalder because I’ve watched WAY too much Vampire Diaries. I might need to change his name. So I guess I get some names from popular TV!

·         Have you ever read a book that you expected to enjoy but didn’t or, vice versa, read a book that you didn’t expect to enjoy and fell in love with it anyway? Which book?
o   The book I most recently expected to feel blandly about and then ended up falling in love with was called The Language of Flowers by Vaness Diffenbaugh. Amazing, and I’d heard nothing about before reading it. (My mom and I share a Kindle account, and she’d purchased it for her book club. I read a couple books a week, and was at loose ends, so I just opened it and was hooked!)

·         If you could learn to prepare (cook, bake, etc.) any dish as well as the restaurant that makes it best, what would it be?
o   I had these little fried polenta sticks at Dos Caminos in the Meatpacking District in New York City – and this was like four years ago now – and I still think about how yummy they were. I’d love to know how to make those!

·         What is your favorite board game? Card game?
o   I love playing Hearts… and I have always loved Pictionary. 

·         When writing, do you share chapters with friends or beta readers as you go or do you keep your projects secret until they are complete?
o   I have done both. Lately with the books I self publish, I’m more of a keep it secret kinda girl. When you’re working with a publisher, that isn’t quite a possibility. I think the bulk of writers will agree that in the long run, keeping it secret is probably a bad idea. I end up doing it anyway. 

·         Do you have any special talents? (Singing, dancing, juggling, gardening, etc.)
o   I’ve been a ballet dancer since I was three. I was fairly serious about it until age 17, when my body completely betrayed me and I developed certain, uh, attributes that don’t go so well with ballet. I taped them down for a while, but it was simply not meant to be. I have come back to ballet as an adult, and feel like I’ve rediscovered part of my soul. 

·         What is your go-to cocktail?
o   Dirty Martini with Ketel One and three olives (preferably stuffed with garlic). 

·         What was your favorite subject at school?
o   English. Though I liked Biology too.

·         Please describe your perfect day.
o   Spending a quiet morning with my kids, giving them breakfast and packing them off to school, and then returning to my desk for four or five hours to write. Since it’s my perfect day, the words would come effortlessly with none of that beating myself up over dropped plot lines or timeframes not working out. And then I’d go for a run (which would, of course, be effortless, since this is my perfect day.) I’d come back, shower, and then my personal chef would come over and prepare a wonderful and healthy family meal while I drank wine on the back patio with my best friends while the children quietly read books or played in the yard. I’d have dinner with my husband, maybe spend some … ahem, quiet time, with him later, and then head off to bed.  Was this day supposed to be realistic at all? This is so far from reality… but doesn’t it sound nice?

·         Please share a favorite line or section from your newest book.
This is a couple lines from A Rare Vintage, the first Wine Country Romance, which releases May 31st.
Isabella took her wine glass in her hand and eyed what was left of the ruby liquid it contained. She swirled it, watching the viscous liquid climb the sides of the globe and then settle back to the bottom.
"You look like you're contemplating a swim in it," Jonathan's voice was low, teasing.
"I probably would if I could!" she smiled.


Isabella DaSilva, a fiery grad student from Cornell's wine program is eager to leave her past behind her and forge a future in the vineyards of the West as an apprentice at Chateau Sauvage, a winery seeking to produce wine like no other California wineries had so far -- Rhone varietals.

She arrives at Chateau Sauvage to find that wine might not be her only interest. The winemaker, Jonathan Sauvage, is tall, dark, and handsome, and clearly in need of help. Together, they work to make a pioneering wine in an effort to keep the struggling winery afloat. Each struggles with their demons -- hers in the form of a painful and mysterious past; his created by memories of what once might have been. In the process, they find that the pain of their shattered pasts fit together perfectly, making their union as perfect as the wine it produces.

A Rare Vintage features an intense and commanding hero who isn’t afraid to ask for help, and a woman who knows that while she might technically be the apprentice, she has plenty to teach Jonathan Sauvage.

This book is the first in the Wine Country Romance series.

Delancey Stewart is the author of Through a Dusty Window: New York City Stories 1910-2001 and A Rare Vintage, the first in her Wine Country Romance Series. A Rare Vintage releases on May 31st.
She is also working on the Girlfriends of Gotham Series for Swoon Romance. The first book, Men and Martinis, will be released in fall 2013.
Stewart has lived on both coasts, in big cities and small towns. She's been a pharmaceutical rep, a personal trainer and a wine seller. Despite lots of other interests, she has always been a writer in some way shape or form.
A military spouse and the mother of two small boys, her current job titles include pirate captain, monster hunter, Lego assembler and story reader. She tackles all these efforts at her current home in Southern Maryland.

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