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In August we begin a series of 10 Author Spotlights with a brief Q&A introducing each of the amazing authors attending Romance, Wine & Chocolate ’18 on August 31st in Orlando, FL. Registration is FULL, but check for cancellations at rwc2018.eventbrite.com Author #9: Get to know a little more about today’s featured author, the fabulous Judy McDonough!
Judy McDonough is originally from central Arkansas and has a deep love for the South. After two years of college as a Communications major, she joined the U. S. Navy as a Radioman/Information Systems Technician. She was stationed in New Orleans, LA for her entire enlistment where she fell in love with the spirited city, and her New Orleanian husband.
Throughout their 15 years of marriage, they have lived in Louisiana, Tennessee, Texas, Ohio, and just recently moved to Orlando with their three young boys.
She is the author of the paranormal romance, The Bayou Secrets Saga. Judy began writing in 2010 while her boys were only 1, 2, and 4 years old. Thanks to the Mickey Mouse Clubhouse, she managed to write her first novel, Deadline, in only 6 weeks. She was published in 2012 and has been dreaming up stories ever since. She currently has four more books in the works, one of which won the Silver Medal in the Silver-Hart Publishing Contest.
I write what I want. Mostly paranormal, but I really don’t like being classified as one specific genre. The books I’ve published have been paranormal, but I write whatever inspires me and whatever I feel like writing. If I wake up one day and want to write a cozy romance, or a romantic suspense, I will.
2. Coffee or tea lover?
I love coffee, and I drink it every morning, but I’m southern, so it’s near impossible for me to turn down a good glass of sweet iced tea.
3. Name one thing on your bucket list.
Just one? Well, among many things, I want to see the northern lights while staying in a glass igloo in Finland.
4. Do you have pets?
Welcome to the McDonough petting zoo. We have a huge Rottweiler named “Gambit” (like the X-Men character) who thinks everyone comes over to see him. Three pushy cats: “Mittens,” a long-haired tabby who thinks she’s our alarm clock and wakes us up with incessant meowing at 6:30 every morning, Shadow, a long-haired tortie cat who head-butts like an MMA fighter, and Candy, a short-haired tabby whom we call the nurse kitty because she knows when you don’t feel well and nurtures and licks you like you’re her kitten. They are all sisters from the same litter, but they’re very different in looks. I think their momma had a street corner she was working at some point. We also have a Betta fish named “Bubbles” with tons of personality…for a fish, and a leopard gecko named (what else) “Ecko the Gecko.”
5. When I wake up every morning I… Love on Gambit, feed him and let him out, then I fix my manna from heaven. Seriously, whoever decided it would be a good idea to grind up coffee beans and soak them in hot water was truly sent from above. Then I tend to my three sons before I finally sit at my desk, threaten them not to bother me unless they’re bleeding or being kidnapped, and work on my manuscript. On Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Saturdays, I force myself to go for a run.
6. Weirdest or unique thing you own.
I have a smudging kit I bought when I thought our house was haunted. It’s a natural alabaster shell, white sage, and a wild turkey feather. You light the sage, blow it out so it smokes pretty heavily, then you use the feather to spread the smoke while blessing the evil spirits out of your house through the windows and doors. I also have a ukulele made from coconuts my mom bought me from Hawaii that my husband thinks is pretty weird. Ha!
7. Do you have any hobbies or particular skills?
Besides reading, I love to scrapbook and knit, but I haven’t done those two things since my boys were in diapers. Hobby Lobby is my kryptonite. I love to play cards and board games, cook, dance, drink fruity libations (especially on the beach), sing karaoke, and watch movies. As for skills, they’re mostly like David Letterman’s Stupid Human Tricks. I can do some crazy tongue tricks, make a car alarm sound with my throat, and I have a knack for pin-pointing random people I meet with their celebrity doppelgängers.
8. What do you hope readers will experience or gain when reading your stories?
An emotional connection to my characters. A love for the Louisiana bayou and New Orleans. A sense that their loved ones aren’t always gone forever after they pass away. And of course, a healthy respect for the supernatural and spiritual warfare.
My inspiration to write a novel came after I read The Twilight Saga and couldn’t put it down. I read all 4 huge books in 4 days, and I wanted to write something that riveting that people couldn’t put it down. I always had an idea for a story in my head, but when I had my very own unexplainable paranormal experience while living in the barracks in New Orleans (a building that had originally been a WW2 hospital), it made a mark that I couldn’t ignore. I incorporated that experience into the idea that had settled in my mind for years, and Deadline was born.
Caroline’s life is on track. She’s about to get her nursing degree and she’s engaged to rich, handsome Trevor. But, before they get married, Trevor wants Caroline to spend the summer in Louisiana, getting to know her father, who’s never been in her life. She reluctantly agrees and heads south, deep into bayou country where she meets Cade. Hot and handsome, he’s pulling out all the stops to convince her that he’s the man for her, not Trevor. As she becomes frightened by a series of strange accidents that began after her arrival, she learns that the woman haunting her dreams is actually a long-dead family member come to warn her about the men in her life. Caroline soon realizes that if she doesn’t solve the mysteries from the past, they could permanently alter her future.
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