Hello! It's the beginning of a new week in the new year. How have you been doing with those pesky resolutions? I don't have any. Not for years. I have hopes. Dreams. Thoughtful considerations. Plans even. But in my life? Nope. Since I am a goal driven person it would be to much pressure. I'd prefer to live each day just doing the best I can with what pops up. Seem like as a writer and a human I'm sort of a Panster. (That's flying by the seat of your pants) I do keep a schedule though and today's includes fellow author Veronica Scott. She's new to my fire and I can't wait for all of us to meet her. So, awaaaaay we go...
Veronica, welcome. I'm so glad you can join us today. I adore your hair and your dragon. It's so chilly in much of the world so while I stoke up the heat can you share a bit about who you are other than your bio?
I’m a mother of two, grandmother of three ranging in age from 19 to 2 years old. I had a very long career on the business side of the NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory (which does Mars rovers and other robotic missions) and worked many projects. I even supervised construction contracts for a time. But fun as all that was, being a full-time author since 2015 is my favorite situation.
Wow! To infinity and beyond. One never thinks of all the behind the scenes things that make NASA what it is. And how wonderful you have a second exciting career as an author. What interests besides writing do you enjoy?
I read voraciously all kinds of books, from Regency romance to nonfiction to science fiction romance (of course). I used to sew and do a lot of crafts, but once my children were grown and gone, I drifted away from all of that. I probably watch way too much cable news for my own good, and I make sure to take a walk every day if I can. Since 2020 I’ve been doing jigsaw puzzles one after the other and enjoying that as a relaxing break in between writing sessions.
I'm not a crafty person but do love puzzles. I have an owl puzzle awaiting assembly. Writing as a career can be lonely oftentimes. However we all need a network or support system. Who is yours?
My two daughters are extremely supportive and understand the publishing world. One daughter was actually published before I ever was, and both have worked as freelance editors in the past, so they know the ropes. My younger brother is also a huge fan and gives me the man’s point of view on all my stories, no matter how steamy. (I typically will have 2-3 open door bedroom scenes per novel. I give myself a 3 out of 5 flames for steaminess.)
Ahh, creativity runs in your family. Speaking of writing, what books or authors are your inspiration?
Andre Norton and Anne McCaffrey for their science fiction and Nalini Singh for her very long-running Psy-Changeling series. I always wanted to write a series in the vein of how she handles hers, and at 17 books and counting now, I think I’m getting there on my Badari Warriors series. (I have 52+ published books in total and am a three-time USA Today Best Selling Author.)
That's quite an accomplishment. Congratulations on being a best selling author. It's something I dream about. I, too, love Anne McCaffery. I'm reading the Dragon Riders of Pern. Tell me, Veronica, other than being and amazing author, do you have any fun or outrageous talent?
My secret superpower is networking. I have no fear, and while I may not know who can help or who has the answer to a problem, I always know where to start and work from there. Other talents? Um no. Don’t watch my Tiktok dance videos!
Ha, I'm running over to TikTok immediately after our time together. Networking is a great talent to have. Can you give us a peek outside your window? What is your neighborhood like?
Southern California is very much a commuter zone, so I don’t really have a neighborhood as such right now. We lived up in the foothills for many years and enjoyed the rural aspects of that life. The occasional mountain lions, not so much!
Roar! I'd be looking out before venturing out. Do you have a particular object like a piece of jewelry or a keepsake of some sort?
I never take off my Virgin of Guadeloupe medallion. I’ve been to her shrine in Mexico three times, and I’ll never forget the first time I looked into her eyes on the image on the peasant’s cloak. Powerful!
Now for a couple of quick insight questions. If you could only choose one song to play every time you walked into a room for the rest of your life, what would it be?
“Fun Fun Fun” by the Beach Boys. It’s been my personal anthem since high school.
Worst household chore?
Dusting. It’s so pointless because the dust just comes back!
If you could time travel, where would you go and when?
I would like to visit the Titanic on April 14th, 1912, although it would, of course, be quite bittersweet and poignant, knowing the eventual fate of the ship. Frustrating, too, since by the rules of time travel, I couldn’t do anything to avert the tragedy. I’d want to explore the ship for myself, see the Grand Staircase, hear the musicians playing, visit Third Class, look at the lifeboats…I’d want to attend the final elegant dinner in First Class, spend time with the famous passengers in their last few carefree hours, so I could preserve some happy memories of them. I’d want to see it ALL, you know? (And I’d sneak a teacup into my voluminous pocket.) I’d leave right after the ship struck the iceberg because I would not feel right about watching all those people go to their deaths in the icy sea, especially since there’s nothing I could do to help in the midst of such tragedy. My first published scifi romance was Wreck of the Nebula Dream, loosely based on the Titanic sinking.
Do you play board games?
I like Scrabble, Monopoly (up to a point), and Risk. Also, Candyland with the grandchildren.
What’s the most amazing natural occurrence you’ve witnessed?
The Northridge earthquake of 1994, which was a 6.7. You could feel the waves of the quake going by underneath the floor, literally like waves in the ocean, and it was impossible to stand up. The sound was incredible – roaring like a train. A huge glass bottle full of pennies in the living room simply burst from the harmonics of the quake. You quickly realize humans are no more than ants when it comes to what Mother Nature is capable of.
What was your hardest scene to write?
There’s a scene in Timtur: The Teacher’s Alien Healer where Lily sits all night beside a man who is dying (not her love interest, not a main character). Writing the scene, I just started weeping. I’m a widow of many years now, and I’ve done that, sitting beside a person for whom there is no hope, so apparently, writing this scene tapped into my emotions from my own night keeping vigil. I certainly didn’t intend to have that happen, but it was powerful.
Oh I'm so sorry for your loss. It's those deep often painful memories that pull great emotions and connect us directly to the readers. Last question. Often authors are working on tight budgets. Please tell us, what is the best money you ever spent as a writer?
Professionally done book covers are essential since the cover is what will initially attract the reader’s eye and hopefully interest them enough to check out the blurb and maybe the sample. I work with Fiona Jayde, who has done all my scifi romance covers and most of my Egyptian paranormal romance covers, and she does a wonderful job. I’m happy to pay the going price for her fantastic covers. Thanks for having me here as your guest!
You are so welcome! I do have one last request. Could you leave us with a bit more about your work and where to locate more about you?
KYDEN: BADARI GLADIATORS SERIES BOOK ONE
Kyden is the top ranked gladiator in the Five Systems but he’s hardly there by choice. Unscrupulous guards faked his death in the lab where he was created and sold him into slavery in the galaxy’s hinterlands. He has no idea where his home is or how many years have passed since he was condemned to a life of endless combat. Kill or be killed is the rule and a Badari never gives up. He’ll fight to stay alive until the Badari goddess sees fit to decree his death.
Elara Vasclavian is the daughter of a senator, as far removed from the life of a gladiator as a noblewoman can be until through the machinations of a political enemy, she ends up in terrible jeopardy. Abducted and given to a group of drunken gladiators for their amusement the night before the games, Elara vows to put up a fight but there’s no real hope of saving herself.
Until Kyden steps in, responding to the goddess’s commandment to protect those who are smaller and weaker.
And discovers she’s his fated mate.
Rescued, Elara returns to her life of privilege but she can’t forget the man who saved her life. The gulf between their places in the Five Systems is unbridgeable, no matter how much Kyden longs for even a glimpse of her in the arena audience. No matter how much she feels the pull to be by his side. As matters stand, they cannot be together…
Or can they?
What others are saying...
Verified Amazon Customer: “5 stars:
I have read every single Badari story and love them all. I'm so excited we now have a new Badari series. And it started out with a bang. Ms Scott writes the perfect combination of science fiction and romance. Wonderful stories and characters and hot romance. I can't wait for the next book. There are very few authors on my automatic buy list and she is on it. I'm never disappointed and have read many of her books multiple times. I hope you give them a chance if you haven't already.”
More about today's guest
USA Today Best Selling Author
Veronica Scott grew up in a house with a library as its heart. Dad loved science fiction, Mom loved ancient history and Veronica thought there needed to be more romance in everything. When she ran out of books to read, she started writing her own stories.
Seven time winner of the SFR Galaxy Award, as well as a National Excellence in Romance Fiction Award, Veronica is also the proud recipient of a NASA Exceptional Service Medal relating to her former day job, not her romances!
She read the part of Star Trek Crew Member in the official audiobook production of Harlan Ellison’s “The City On the Edge of Forever.”
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