Today’s featured author of seasoned romance is Liz Durano–although Liz majored in Journalism in college, she discovered that she preferred writing fictional stories and poetry over news and ad copy. She currently lives in Los Angeles and when she’s not listening to her Muses, she’s drinking coffee and stepping over her son’s Legos all over the place. But I’m going to let her tell you a little bit more about herself…
LIZ: I’ve been writing since I was about eleven or twelve, back when I played with paper dolls and then later when I fell in love with anime cartoons and wrote and drew their stories. By eighth grade, I evolved and wrote my first steamy serial in eighth grade which almost got me suspended from school. In exchange for the principal not calling my parents, I had to make amends by joining the Poetry Club after school and finding another way to channel all my teen angst. Up until then, I didn’t much care for poetry but I ended up loving it.
I’ve been writing on and off since, dabbled in self-publishing back in 2000 when self-publishing wasn’t even a word although one could have thousands of books stashed in their garage for a fee via vanity publishers. Thank goodness I was too broke then to take that route and instead, I shelved all my stories and decided to just focus on building my massage practice—which I did and while I no longer run a full-time practice, I still see long-time clients once a week (it gets me out of the house).
I started writing again in 2012 and published my first novel, Finding Sam in November 2014. Loving Ashe followed in June 2015 and then Collateral Attraction in December 2015. In October 2016, I released Everything She Ever Wanted and the rest is history. Most readers have met me through Dax and Harlow and nothing makes me happier than knowing my stories touch people.
NAN: Tell us what you are currently working on or promoting.
LIZ: I’m currently working on the third book of my Celebrity series. It’s the story of Gareth Roman, who started out as a secondary character but very pivotal to the growth of the main character, Riley Eames. But then I’m also working on the third novel of my Different Kind of Love series.
NAN: What genre(s) do you write in?
LIZ: I write women’s fiction, contemporary romance, and suspense.
NAN: What advice would you give to an aspiring author?
LIZ: Be patient. Don’t release that first book until you have your marketing plan in place. A lot of new authors want to publish right away and wonder why no one is buying. Then they realize that they haven’t started a mailing list, a website or had any marketing and promos in place. So my advice would be, before you publish your book, set the stage with a mailing list, a website, a marketing plan and a budget.
NAN: If you could tell your younger writing self anything, what would it be?
LIZ: Don’t worry too much about what other people will think about your books. Just write it and publish it. You’re doing way more than they ever will, as far as doing what you love is concerned.
NAN: How do you keep sane as a writer?
LIZ: My family keeps me sane and grounded. They remind me I’m not that awesome writer I think I am. I still have to do the laundry and fold the clothes and put them away. I still have to do the dishes.
NAN: Has reading a book ever changed your life? If yes, which one and how?
LIZ: The Adventurers by Harold Robbins. This was the first book I ever read when I was about 12 or 13 that I found by accident and I couldn’t put it down. I went on to read two other books by Robbins called The Pirate and A Stone for Danny Fisher because they were part of the pile of books I came across at that time. Those three books convinced me that I wanted to write like Robbins, or at least, learn to transport people to exotic (The Adventurers and The Pirate) and not-so-exotic locations (A Stone for Danny Fisher) with words.
NAN: What obstacles, if any, have you encountered in being a writer?
LIZ: Life, in general. Most of the obstacles, however, are my self-limiting beliefs that I let rule my life as well as that old “What will others think?” I used to suffer from Imposter Syndrome and never allowed myself to enjoy the fruits of my labors because I didn’t think I was ‘that’ good to deserve anything. It’s changing though and I have to take it one day at a time.
NAN: When did you first consider yourself a writer?
LIZ: When I was in eighth grade and almost got suspended for writing this steamy taboo story that was circulated in Homeroom and the teacher got a hold of a racy page. The principal struck a deal with me then. She wouldn’t tell my parents if I agreed to leave the Drama Club and go into Poetry club so I could work out all my teen angst there.
NAN: Would you rather have one giant bestseller or a long string of moderate sellers?
LIZ: As a self-published author, I prefer the idea of perennial books like Shogun by James Clavell which still sells a lot twenty years after it was written. So I’d rather have a string of moderate sellers that will sell long after I’m gone so my sons, for whom I really write, can benefit.
NAN: Do you think a writer should write every day?
LIZ: Not really. Some people go by word count but I hate counting so I just go by chapters and scenes. Some days I don’t write though because the characters haven’t talked to me yet to tell their stories. But the moment they do, I don’t stop until their story is done. Usually. At the moment though, I find myself writing outlines. It still counts, though it’s not as exciting.
Find Liz all over social media:
Everything She Ever Wanted
She’s smart, independent, and heartbroken. He’s gorgeous, a bit rough around the edges, and too young.
But when a scheduling mistake lands a heartbroken doctor and a cocky woodworker in the same place at the same time, can their fling turn into the real thing?
When her husband leaves her for a younger woman, 40-year-old surgeon Harlow James finds herself without family and friends, and barely a career. So she trades the bright lights of New York for the open road and ends up at the Pearl, a sustainable Earthship outside of Taos, New Mexico where she hopes to find out where she went wrong.
For 27-year-old master woodworker, Dax Drexel, the Pearl is where he retreats from the world to design his award-winning furniture. Unfortunately, he got his dates wrong for the Pearl’s already got an occupant and she’s currently passed out on his bed, naked. He really should mind his own business but he can’t, not when there’s a gun in the living room, next to a tear-stained note that begins with, “I’m sorry I failed you…”
Join Dax and Harlow in a journey that readers have called “heartfelt,” “riveting,” and “amazingly emotional.”
I was never into fairy tales.
But discovering a real live princess in my house at three in the morning when all I want to do is crash after a long drive from Flagstaff reminds me of the story of the three bears and that blonde chick who breaks into their pad, eats all their food, and sleeps in their beds, too. Just like the one that’s in mine right now.
At first, I was afraid she was dead, but the gentle rise and fall of her chest told me that she was just passed out, probably from the half-empty bottle of Bordeaux in the living room that she must have enjoyed all by herself for there was only one wine glass next to it. But of all the wines she had to pick from the cellar, it had to be the 2005 Château Lafite-Rothschild Bordeaux I had been saving for a special occasion. Two grand down the drain, courtesy of Goldi-fucking-locks here, who’s not only passed out cold, but she’s also naked.
Thank her lucky stars the sheets cover her hips, though it doesn’t cover her torso, her gorgeous full breasts on full display. I have to stop and stare for a few seconds even though my mind tells me to look away. I’m a man, after all, and not a dead one at that. And her tits are real, not those fake ones that I see all the time just about everywhere. I adjust myself before walking out of the room and shut the bedroom door quietly behind me. Just because I own the place doesn’t mean I can crash it anytime I want, and certainly not with Goldilocks snoring on my bed.
Once in the living room, I pull out my phone and scan my calendar. Did I agree to have the place rented out this month? My calendar app appears on my phone screen, and the next three weeks are shaded in red to indicate that Nana did rent the place out at the last minute. I check my text messages, and sure enough, she sent me a text message yesterday telling me that the new tenant had paid in cash. She even left a message on my voicemail. Too bad I didn’t check any of my messages because that would have certainly saved me a trip. But I’d been too busy the last two days finalizing custom orders.
I exhale and sit down on the couch, picking up the bottle of Bordeaux and taking a sip. I might as well find out what two grand tastes like. I doubt she drank it straight from the bottle, so I’m not worried about cooties at all. And even if she did, that’s no big deal. The big deal is sitting right in front of me, sharing the same space with the wine and a jar of half-eaten fudge. A gun.
General link for books: https://lizdurano.com/books/