I'm telling you, this is a book you have to read. Personally, I ate it up!

I’m telling you, this is a book you have to read. Personally, I ate it up!

If this novel doesn’t have it all, or most of it, I don’t know what does: love, hate, now, then, men, women, physics, metaphysics, barns, houses, castles, nice horses, snarky horses, life, death, more life…

Who created this fascinating story? Tricia Linden did. And I’m interviewing her today. She’s published two other time-travely romance novels. Check them out on her WP blog.

But today, we’re here to talk about her just-released novel, Away Over Yonder.

It's the third book in a trilogy, so you might want to check out the first two.

It’s the third book in a trilogy, so you might want to check out the first two.

Tricia is really happy to be here even though she knows the kind of zany interview she’s gotten herself into.

See how happy she looks? I wonder how long that will last...

See how happy she looks? I wonder how long that will last…

Lorna: I’m glad you could make it, Tricia.

Tricia: The pleasure is all mine, Lorna. You have quite a great blog and I’m honored to be here to talk about my newest book, Away Over Yonder.

Lorna: Well, thanks, Tricia. Anyway. “Away Over Yonder.” Is that a typo? I understand. I make them all the time.

Tricia: No. It’s not a typo. The title for Away Over-Yonder comes from the song by Carol King. I’ve always loved that song and the image it invoked of a place over-yonder where the sweet tasting good life is so easily found . . . and you could find shelter from hunger and cold. It’s about two people whose lives are intertwined in ways they wouldn’t have imagined and who eventually find their Over-Yonder place together.

Lorna: Wow. That’s deep. But I was sure it was a typo.

Tricia: Sorry.

Lorna: No problem. I’ll get over it. How about you give us a billboard-type ad for your book to hook readers?

Tricia: That’s difficult. Let me think…

Lorna: I know. This has nothing to do with payback for the typo thing.

It was a typo.

It was a typo.

Tricia: Okay. I’ve got it! “Breanna Ellers, psychic horse trainer succeeds where others have failed and saves the old MacDonald farm. Alex MacDonald eternally grateful. Film at eleven.”

Lorna: Nicely done! “Eternally” suggests the time travel angle. You got the psychic horse thing in there. And the lovey-dovey stuff, too.

Tricia: Would you like to read the blurb for the book? It’s really good!

Lorna: Tricia, most blog readers have the attention span of a puppy. I have a lot more questions for you. How about if we save that for the end?

See these toys? I don't. I'm looking for the next thing to chew. How much longer is this post? I'm due for a nap right after I shred something.

See these toys? I don’t. I’m looking for the next thing to chew. How much longer is this post? I’m due for a nap right after I shred something.

Tricia: If you think that’s best.

Lorna: Trust me. I’m a professionalized interbloggerviewer. Moving on. Who’s most likely to love this book?

Tricia: I’ve always written the books I want to read, so I’d say, me – and any other romance readers who like a little metaphysical spirituality (i.e. paranormal time-travel and reincarnation) and aren’t looking for too much sex. The characters in my books have sex, and I think they do it well, but that’s not all they do.

Lorna: I’m glad to hear that. It’s best if sex is well-done. Plus, how many climaxes can one book have, anyway? That sounded strange. Speaking of strange, all of your books have a paranormal element to them, including this one. What draws you to “the other side?”

Tricia: I’ve been interested in spirituality for a long time and was looking for ways to include spiritual elements into my romance stories without being too preachy. I use magic, time-travel, and reincarnation to represent all the ways spirituality can show up in our lives. Who hasn’t experienced meeting just the right person, finding just the right book, or hearing just the right song at just the right time? The universe has grand designs and I like to look at how these grand designs might play out in people’s lives, at least in my own mind.

Lorna: I hear you! My life is one big synchronicity stew. I’m not sure about time travel, but I’m convinced that we get lots of chances to come back as different people or animals to work on, um, unfinished business we left behind when we dearly departed the last time. It’s like we get to try out different roles or characters, right? Getting back to your book, do you have a favorite character in Away Over-Yonder?

Tricia: Of course I love Alex and Bree, (the hero and heroine), but I’d say my favorite is Franklin, the man who serves as Bree’s “adopted” grandfather. He’s got such a loving soul and he really has Bree and Alex’s best interests at heart.  As for the whole Eller’s Family trilogy, I’d have to go with Rory from the first book, Return In Time. Sheesh, what’s not to like about the guy? He’s handsome, funny, mischievous and great in bed. I made him in the image of my perfect fantasy lover. Rory also makes a very brief appearance in this third book, Away Over-Yonder. I couldn’t leave him out.

I don't know if your Rory is anything like my Philip, but Magnum, PI is a good likeness of my guy (a few decades ago). Odd thing, though, the Samsung Gallaxy Notebook Smart Phone he has is nearly as big as this phone...

Magnum, PI is a good likeness of my guy (a few decades ago). Odd thing, though, the Samsung Galaxy Notebook Smart Phone he has is nearly as big as this phone…

Lorna: Rory sounds a lot like my Philip. You haven’t been tapping into my real-life fantasies, have you? I bet as a romance writer, you kind of have a soft spot for all of your characters, even the snarky ones. Am I right?

Tricia: Afraid so. I love all my characters; they all bring something to the tales. From Alex’s cantankerous old father to Bree’s overly protective cousin, Jack, they all have their good parts to love.

Lorna: I knew it! You know, I’m a little psychic myself. Well, Actually, I’m more of a medium psychic. I stay away from the petite sections… I also avoid writing what I don’t know about. But that doesn’t seem to stop you. I mean, I assume you don’t actually know how life was like back in 12th century Scotland.

Tricia: I’ve read a ton of historical romance novels and love the idea of experiencing another time and place. I also believe we’ve all lived many lives before, so I just tried to imagine myself in another one of my lives. And then I went to visit Scotland and the Isle of Skye to make sure I got it right. That helped a lot. They have a lot of wonderful old castles in Scotland, it’s so romantic.

Lorna: L.U.C.K.Y. You went on a recon mission. That does it. My next novel is going to be set in Italy or Portland, Oregon. Maybe now is a good time for you to tell aspiring authors something to help them with their dreams (because I’m too busy dreaming of the Amalfi Coast or The Portland Saturday Market).

I may not be gardeny or artsy, but I sure am crafty.

I may not be gardeny or artsy, but I sure am crafty.

Tricia: Okay. Believe in yourself. And make sure your writing is the best it can be before you hit the publish button. Go over it a dozen or two dozen times and then have at least two of your best, hard-core reading buddy’s do a beta read of it and get their feedback. Trust yourself, but get second opinions. You don’t have to do everything they suggest, but it really does help. And then, at the end, continue to believe in yourself.

Lorna: I can hear Journey’s “Don’t Stop Believing” in the background. Cool! I’m inspired and I’m chair-dancing! While I’m in the mood for fun, give us a fun fact about this book.

Tricia: [chair-dancing, too] In the book, Bree and Alex watch the movie, Monty Python’s The Holy Grail, which was shot at Castle Dune in Scotland. I’ve been to that castle and The Holy Grail one of my favorite movies.

Lorna: [head-bopping] Mondo-Amazing! I didn’t know any of that! Now give us a fun fact about you (even though you kind of already have Tickety-Boo Tricia).

Tricia: Tickety-Boo?

Lorna: Yeah, it means cool, swell, fun…urban slang, you know?

Tricia: Oh. Okay. Well, let me see . . . I’ve already told you I believe in past lives. I didn’t start writing romance until I hit the half century mark and I really do believe in happily ever after since I’m living with my soul mate.

Lorna: Me, too! Listen up, People! True love and a viable writing career is possible. [Cue Journey tune] Don’t stop believing! I won’t get into the soul mate stuff, but do you have any more writing projects planned or underway?

Tricia: Great question, thanks for asking.

Lorna: Thanks and you’re welcome!

Tricia: I have a new book, called Moonlight Dreams, finished and ready for publishing as soon as I can get the book cover created. (Book cover artists take note: I’m looking for a good cover designer.) It takes place in the late 1700’s in central Europe and involves a wizard, his great-granddaughter and an immortal man who’s the ruler of his kingdom. It’s a tale of beauty and the beast, but instead of beauty taming the beast, he finds his own self-redemption. All good stuff.

Lorna: Very sneaky, Tricia. But any of you artist types, go ahead and contact her since she wheedled in an RFP for book cover designs. Since you seem to be fiesty, I’m sure you have a question you wish I asked you but didn’t. Go ahead. Ask it and answer it! You’re going to anyway.

Tricia: I do feel rather feisty. It must be something about being on this blog. It brings out the inner Diva in me! Here’s my question to me: Tell me someone who inspires you?  Mae West. That woman had a way with words that’s to be admired.

Maybe this is where the time travel idea comes from?

Maybe this is where the time travel idea comes from?

Lorna: Here’s a thought. Maybe you are the reincarnation of Mae West and all these romance novels are her fantasies…ever think about that?

Tricia: No. But you may have given me an idea for my next novel…

Lorna: Whoa, sexy silent film star! Let’s not get ahead of ourselves. Let’s tell our good readers how they can get a copy of Away Over-Yonder and any of your other books. It’s actually pretty easy. Tricia’s books are sold at all of the major online booksellers like Amazon and Barnes and Noble and as far as she knows, Apple, although she doesn’t have a Mac pc so she can’t test that outlet. (Neither do I.)

Granted, Mac Dude, you look cool, but Steve Jobs is, you know, fatally errorer, and Billy-Boy Gates is looking strong.

Granted, Mac Dude, you look cool, but Steve Jobs has, you know, fatally errorer,(RIP and all) and Billy-Boy Gates is looking, well, antiviral.

The opening scene from  Away Over-Yonder

Breanna stopped brushing the gelding’s warm chestnut hide for a moment to listen as the rumble of a motorcycle reached her ears. It was definitely a motorcycle, not a car or a truck, and not only was the sound notably distinctive, it was distinctly unexpected. Over-Yonder ranch sat nestled against the foothills of Diablo Valley at the end of a long and narrow country road, far enough from the beaten path to make an unexpected approaching rider undeniably intriguing.

Sunnyside, the horse she was brushing down, turned his ears, pointing them in the direction of the roadway, his big brown eyes watching her.

“You hear it, too, don’t you, boy?”Bree spoke to the horse, rubbing his long brown nose. They had just finished his morning exercise, and she was in the process of rubbing him down, first along his back and then down each leg. Front to back, left to right, the process always stayed the same. She had rescued Sunnyside from an abusive owner, and this daily routine was part of his treatment.

Bree registered the sound of the motorcycle growing closer as she methodically completed her task. It would take a lot more than the lure of an approaching visitor to pull her away from Sunnyside. Right now, this horse was her priority. Nothing and no one was more important.

She had just finished brushing Sunnyside and was setting aside her tools, when she heard the motor bike roll into the graveled parkway in front of the stables and come to a stop. Bree turned to give the horse a parting hug. “You are loved, Sunnyside. Always know that you are loved. You are safe, and strong, and loved.” Bree gave the horse a final pat before stepping away. Sunnyside bobbed his head in approval and nickered, nudging her gently away with his nose. She could almost hear him say, “I’m all right now. Go greet your visitor.” Sensing his contentment, she smiled.

She headed down the shed row toward the front entrance and dusted off her hands along the front of her snug-fitting jeans before she rolled the long sleeves of her plaid flannel shirt up to her elbows. In a futile effort to contain her wayward curls, she ran her fingers through her thick copper-red hair and readjusted the elastic band holding it away from her face. Though it was a never-ending battle, she refused to admit defeat.

She reached the shadow of the wide double doors at the entrance of the stables and stopped to observe her unexpected visitor, standing one step away from the bright light of the mid-day sun. The rider had already dismounted from his bike and was removing his helmet. It was a sleek black orb with a tinted face plate that when worn would obscure his features.

From the shadow of the doorway she watched as he set the helmet on the seat of his bike and ran his fingers through his dark auburn hair, releasing his disheveled curls from the dreaded curse of helmet-hair. His profile revealed a strong, straight nose, bold cheek bones, and a well formed jaw.

Bree watched a moment longer as the man unzipped his black leather jacket and tucked his shirt into his faded black jeans. The tight fit of his dark tee-shirt revealed the type of rock hard muscles that came from long hours of hard work. He was one nice-looking man.

After she finished checking out the man, she checked out his bike, a sleek black and gray

Ducati Multistrada. The model looked to be a few years old, but the bike was in mint condition. He obviously took good care of his toys. It was one nice-looking bike.

Don't stop now, Sugar! You got my attention.

Don’t stop now, Sugar! You got my attention.

The back cover book blurb: 

Alex MacDonald will use charm, hard work, or whatever else it takes to get his skittish Clydesdales working again so he can prove to his cantankerous father that he has what it takes to run the family business. When he goes in search of the best horse whisperer available, he finds Breanna Ellers, the sweetest little Scottish lass this side of Inverness. There’s only one problem; for reasons unknown to Alex, she hates the MacDonalds. Alex isn’t above telling a little white lie to hide his last name, not if it means healing his horses and saving the family business.

Breanna Ellers of the MacNicol clan may be a bit old-fashioned, but her psychic ability to connect to animals makes her one of the best horse trainers in Northern California. She’s reluctant to leave Over-Yonder, the family ranch, but the challenge of working with Alex and his Clydesdales proves too tempting to ignore. When she discovers that Alex is a MacDonald, it’s nearly a deal breaker. She hates the MacDonalds and what they did to the MacNicol clan back on the Isle of Skye. It doesn’t matter that the battle took place over eight hundred years ago; to a woman born in 1308 it’s still recent history.

It’ll take a special kind of magic, and a whole lot of forgiveness, to bring these two ill-fated lovers together—again.

Sometimes, the road to forgiveness is away over-yonder.

Thanks, Tricia, for being such a good sport. Your book(s) sound fascinating. They are on my ever-growing reading list!