Have you ever been a patient in an ambulance? How did it make you feel? Did you wonder about the people who were caring for you, what their training was, how much they cared about your well being? I’d love to hear your comments below.
I have the memory of being a patient twice in the past, once after a relatively minor car accident and once for a severe asthma attack. The asthma attack was especially scary because the treatment en-route was vital, it was definitely more than just a transport.
I also have the terrific perspective of being one of those trained individuals giving care to patients on the way to hospital. I’ve been a volunteer EMT with my local ambulance corps since 1986. Sometimes the care provided is simple compassion and transport… sometimes we work hard to save a life. I’ve delivered babies – and I’ve done CPR trying to restart a heart. Both successful CPR and holding a newborn in your arms can give you a really heady feeling.
My entire family is in emergency services, both volunteer and career. That’s why, when I wanted to write a mystery suspense, it seemed natural to make my characters emergency service professionals. Going by my own experiences, where else do you get to see so much of life?
I encourage each of you to consider volunteering with your local ambulance squad; the rewards of being able to do something to help, to give some people the only chance they may have, and to know that you have provided (at the minimum) comfort and reassurance is never-ending. There are many ways to be a vital part of your community, give your ambulance corps a chance – it is definitely worth it.
About Final Sin:
Deputy Sheriff Commander Jake Carson has his hands full…
investigation of a brutal multiple homicide, a troubled son and a
vindictive ex-wife. He meets young, free-spirited paramedic Julie
Jennings. When Julie becomes the subject of an obsession, it puts both
of them in danger…
Download a FREE Final Sin “discussion starter package” complete with free bookmarks – it’s perfect for a book club or library discussion group.
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I recently read these definitions on an online message board –
The “Alpha Male” a.k.a. “Dukes of Slut”, tends to be dominant, aggressive and in control.
A “Beta Male” is generally the “boy next door” and is more submissive to his female partner. Maybe more in touch with his “feminine side”?
And finally, the “Gamma Male” is an Alpha with a dark side.
I was curious where each of my story heroes might fit in. Please feel free to chime in at any time (or atleast to leave a comment below). I like to think that my characters are “real” so they are really multi-faceted; I will try to label by the most predominant traits.
Lon Bartlett (Bartlett’s Rule): Alpha. But is Lon an Alpha because he believes that is what society (& his publisher) expects? When Lon meets Paige, his bed-hopping seems to come to a screeching halt. But then Lon claimed that it was all media-hype to begin with. He is tender and definitely passionate with Paige and caters to her needs and comfort level. His chosen career is a writer.
Brandon Price (Forgotten): Beta. He tends to be reclusive and a bit shy in his personal life. Caitlyn draws him out socially. But in business he is an agressive go-getter and is able to handle himself well. He was born into wealth but is determined to pay his own way. His chosen career is an Information Technology Specialist.
Tom Hughes (Within the Law): Gamma. He’s an authority figure and doesn’t let you forget it. And he’s got a temper that gets him into trouble. Tom also has a wild side and in his own words, he hasn’t always done the right thing. He is a very physical man at work, around the house and in bed. He is not threatened by Alli’s independence. His chosen career is a New York State Trooper.
Now my real-life personal hero, my hubby, he’s a little bit of all three (but that’s another story).
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A while back I had received questions about Lon, the hero of Bartlett’s Rule (I know Paige just adores him!). Here is the basic gist of that interview:
Does his name mean anything special?
I always look up names (usually under baby names) for their meanings. In this case “Lon” means “ready to do battle”; the name Lon also reminds me of a Lion (without the “I” of course!). The Bartlett surname appears many times throughout history (politicians, publishers, racecar drivers, sports figures, philosophers and writers) and is also used for a collection of quotations. Besides, the title Bartlett’s Rule just seems to roll off of the tongue comfortably.
What does Lon look like:
I picture Lon as a big (maybe about 6 foot to 6’2”) man and yet graceful. More to do with image and less to do with vanity, I picture him working out and keeping trim and fit. Because of his public image, he probably has his hair professionally styled and his clothing personally tailored. All in all, he is very comfortable “in his own skin”. He definitely is the type of man who would attract stares from most women.
Who does he love?
Lon loves women generally. His romantic love interest is Paige Andrews. In the beginning he believes his love for Paige stems more from a need to protect her but then he comes to realize that he admires her strength and appreciates how she makes him feel. He also has a very deep and friendly love for his publicist, Shell, who once was a romantic liaison and now is simply his best friend.
Does Paige return his love?
Paige loves him even though her love and need for him scares her. He is so opposite of the type of man she thought she should be involved with. She definitely worries about his reputation and whether he would hurt her or not.
What is some of Lon’s “history” before the story begins?
While his family is only mentioned in the story, it is obvious that his closeness with his parents and the way he was raised is a big reason for the self-confidence he has. He’s chosen to live in the very urban and bustling New York City. He is an award winning writer with a reputation as a womanizer.
What does he want out of life?
He wants Paige in his life. Lon also wants something more than the shallow relationships that have helped to promote his image.
Does Lon have any great “revelations” about himself during the story?
Lon learns that he is capable of doing anything necessary to protect the ones he loves.
Will there be any more stories about Lon?
No, Lon and Paige go off to live happily ever after; there is no need to feature him in another story. BUT… he may appear as a character in someone else’s story at some point. Some of the characters that appeared in the story may take on more of a life of their own. Who knows? Maybe I will see an opportunity for Shell, Jorge, JeanMarie, Cindy or Denny to begin a romance???
I have been receiving a lot of questions about my novel, Bartlett’s Rule. so I chose a few of these questions and I am posting them here – with my answers of course!
1.) Q: Tell us how your interest in writing developed. How and when did you decide to write your first book?
A: I have always enjoyed telling stories ever since I was a kid. I loved watching people and thinking “what if”. I would often embellish real life occurrences and put them to paper, I found real life to be exciting as it was. One day I decided to see how long I could make a story, how many words I could put together and still make it cohesive. That story, never published and now totally out of date, was called “More Than a Friend” and it was a 65-thousand word love story.
2.) Q: Who are the inspirations for your heroes and heroines in your novels?
A: Every hero that I write about is basically my concept of who and what a man should be in every unique situation – then I try to throw in a few traits from my hubby just because I think that’s appealing – I try to visualize the hero as I create him (usually some hot, sexy actor), and none of my heroes are perfect men, that just wouldn’t be real.
3.) Q: What “hot sexy actor” would play your hero in Bartlett’s Rule? How about your heroine?
A: Lon Bartlett would be played by David Conrad (the hunky paramedic husband in Ghost Whisperer). Paige Andrews would be either Liv Tyler or Neve Campbell.
4.) Q: What were the challenges (research, literary, psychological, and logistical) in bringing Bartlett’s Rule to life? Did writing this book “change” you?
A: The trauma of rape changes a person, it is something that can certainly be “lived with” but it can never be undone. I needed to make Paige a real person, a real “Survivor” because she did survive this horrendous act. At the same time, what happened to Paige left extremely deep scars. Rape victims often suffer triggers and have major trust issues. The people that love them become secondary victims as they have to also cope with the after-effects of rape. A secondary has to at times be much more patient than usual, but they are also human beings and sometimes understanding strains them. As a writer, I did my best to “get into the minds” of both Paige and Lon, and even into the mind of the rapist – you can’t not be changed after that.
5.) Q: Tell us about your other writing? What subjects do you write about for newspapers and magazines? Do you find it easier to write short articles or novels?
A: I have rarely done hard-news reporting, the closest I have come to that is covering things like school board meetings and reporting on what went on. Most of my writing is very close to advertorial, business coverage with a positive slant. We (I sometimes get to team up with my photographer husband) will often cover grand opening or other special retail events, or I interview prominent people in a field or business. I have a monthly column in a NY trade paper for emergency service issues where I will research new protocols, legislation or opinions and advice about running an emergency agency. When it comes to fiction, I definitely prefer the novel length writing because it gives me time to get into the characters.
6.) Q: How did it feel the very first time you ever saw your name in print as a byline?
A: It was a little bit scary and a whole lot of proud. I was about 18 or 19 and I wrote two articles on the same event. A young man was killed defending a stranger during a mugging in a NYC subway. A community organization I volunteered with was sponsoring a posthumous awards ceremony and I was asked to put together an article for a local weekly on the event. I also wrote one for my college newspaper. Both pieces were published. While I was certainly proud to see my byline, I also panicked because of all those people who were relying on my words to tell them the facts.
7.) Q: What recommendations can you make for those who are trying to break into the field?
A: Never give up. Understand that not everybody is going to like your writing and you will almost always receive many, many rejections before you find someone who is willing to take a chance on you. Read a lot and make sure you read different kinds of writing, study the different styles, and write. Ignore destructive comments and really listen to constructive criticism. You have to develop a thick skin because you will encounter folks who think an insult is always acceptable. Never run away from your dream, keep writing.
8.) Q: What does it mean to be successful? According to your definition, how successful have you been so far? Where do you see yourself five years from now?
A: I think that having who you are and what you do be recognized and respected is a big part of being successful. Too many people try to put a price tag on success when in reality it has nothing to do with money. Don’t get me wrong, I would love to have a bestselling book (at least 10-thousand copies!) and a whole lot of royalties, but being known as a writer and knowing that people are willing to take time out of their lives to read my words is absolutely wonderful. Since I really love writing, I think I will continue to write something, anything, for the rest of my life.
9.) Q: What is going on with your writing these days? What is your target audience? What can readers expect when they read your work?
A: I have another romance novel coming out this July, Forgotten. So I am very excited about this second book, as a matter of fact, a preview of Forgotten is in the back of Bartlett’s Rule. Romance novels are typically “womens’ books”, but I like to think I put in enough story line to make it interesting for all readers. Readers can expect to meet characters that are fully dimensional, that have both bad and good qualities, and real life events that the characters have to deal with.
10) Q: Can you tell us where to find more information on you? Website? Blog? Is there a place where readers can reach you?
A: Everyone can always check my author site right here, http://chellecordero.blogspot.com/ for the latest news about any of my fiction writing. My online portfolio with clickable links to some of my published (non-fiction) articles can be found at http://www.geocities.com/bylines333/res_chelle.html. I also blog frequently on MySpace, http://blog.myspace.com/Rikki613. My readers are welcome to contact me via email anytime, just write to firstname.lastname@example.org.