Sunday, September 25, 2011

Monday's Meet the Author: Dr. Debra Holland (Plus Enter to Win a Gift Card)

This Monday's guest is Dr. Debra Holland.  Debra is a licensed Marriage and Family Therapist. For twenty-five years, she’s counseled individuals, couples, and groups. She specializes in communication and relationship issues. We all need to talk to her!!  Besides helping people to live happily-ever-after, she also writes romances and we all know they end happily-ever-after.  

Debra is a three-time Golden Heart finalist and one time winner.  Like so many other writers, Debra decided to take the plunge this year and go Indie as the e-book revolution continues to bless writers with a place to market their books and become successful without an agent and (gasp!) a publisher.  And, Debra has become one successful writer.

In April, she published her Golden Heart winner, Wild Montana Sky, a sweet Western historical. She followed up with its sequel, Starry Montana Sky. Four months later, the books have sold 22,000 copies and continue to sell. An e-book is forever. She has also published her first two books in a fantasy romance trilogy, Sower of Dreams and Reaper of Dreams. Debra has a wonderful blog and she does share her sales figures on her blog which is a great help to those who are thinking about becoming an Indie. Debra's nonfiction book, The Essential Guide to Grief and Grieving, from Alpha Books (a subsidiary of Penguin) will be out in November. She has a free ebooklet available on her website,  58 Tips for Getting What You Want From A Difficult Conversation. You can also buy her books and follow her on Twitter and Facebook from her webpage.
And, here's her answers to our probing questions:     

1.What movie best describes your life?

I really had to think about this because my life’s been pretty good. I’ll choose Chariots of Fire because I love the movie and it’s about striving for a huge goal and succeeding. I’ve accomplished several big goals in my life that aren’t ordinary--obtaining my Ph.D, becoming a black belt (I’m 2nd, almost 3rd degree) and writing a book (then 8 more.) Now my big goal is having a successful self-publishing career.  

2. What is the one thing you need to do but hate doing it?

Writing. I’m not good at forcing myself to sit down and actually write. I’d rather read, and do so far too often. At least she is honest. She also had a smiley face here but something happened to it??? Sorry, Debra

3. If you were about to be served your last meal, what would be on your plate?

Yum. Bad for me food. Mexican Food and chocolate glazed donuts for desert.  

 4. If you could be any fictional character (books, movies) who would you be?

I never thought of who I’d want to be. I have thought of which hero I’d want. 1. Adam Sinclair in The Adept, by Katherine Kurtz and Deborah Turner Harris. 2. Roarke in the J.D. Robb series.

5. What is your favorite kind of chocolate? 

Lindt Dark Chocolate truffles. I also love chocolate covered pretzels.

6. If you knew you were going to be sent back to high school tomorrow, how would you react? 

It depends on if I could go back with my knowledge and personality intact. If I could, that would be great. If not… actually high school was mostly a good experience for me. I still wouldn’t want to return.

7. What do you love most about being a writer?

Receiving fan mail from people who love my books and can’t wait for the next one to come out.

The Giveaway!  You want to win a $10 iTunes giftcard?  Leave a comment and if you'd like, answer one of the above questions.  A winner will be randomly chosen on Wednesday!  


Lisa Mondello said...

Deb, you continue to be an inspiration! 22,000 books in 4 months. Wow! To your continued success!
Lisa Mondello

Taryn Kincaid said...

Wow, 22,000 in 4 months. I'm in awe. WTG.

Crissie McMahan said...

I will definately look Debra up and the cover picture is beautiful! Can't wait to check out 1 of her books!

Norah Wilson said...

Wonderful interview, Debra! And LOL on preferring reading to writing. I fall into that mode way too often myself.

Good luck on your latest goal. You are clearly well on your way!

Playground Monitor said...

Terrific interview, and thanks for being so open with your numbers. I'm actually more interested in your upcoming non-fic book on grieving because I went through a messy divorce recently and I feel that's its own kind of death. I've had to work through the stages of grief and am still working on anger.

I think you'll reach your goal!


Linda Andrews said...

Great interview, Debra. You're truly an inspiration. What was it that swayed your decision to publish your own books?

Regina Duke said...

Great interview, Debra! As a fan of your sweet Westerns, are you planning another one?

Meanwhile, I must sample your new ones!

Regina Duke

Robin Hillyer Miles said...

I love reading self publishing success stories!

LaTessa said...

Great interview & congrats on all your success, very inspiring.

Patricia Preston said...

Glad you stopped by and left a comment. Debra wanted me to let all of you know that she will respond later. She is on a flight now.

Crystal Lee said...

Congrats, Debra! Your self-publishing success is very inspiring. I look forward to reading your fantasy books.

Pat Trainum aka P. T. Bradley said...

Great interview. I immediately went to Amazon and after reading the first chapters, bought it. It's great!

Kandy Shepherd said...

Debra, as a reader I loved WILD MONTANA SKY; as a writer I appreciate your frankness in sharing your self-publishing journey. Nice interview, Patricia.

Dr. Debra Holland said...

Yay, I'm finally home in Southern California after traveling all day from South Dakota where I went for a wedding and research trip.

Thanks so much for all the good wishes and to everyone who is checking out or has bought the book. I really appreciate it.


I'm so sorry you had to experience a messy divorce. Yes, the death of a marriage is painful, especially if your ex makes things worse, sometimes for years. A real death, although also devastating, is an ending. Different kinds of losses to work through, but you grieve both. I hope The Essential Guide to Grief and Grieving is helpful.


Yes I'm writing book three in the Montana Sky series, Stormy Montana Sky and hope to have it out in November/December. I have four other stories planned.

Linda, I decided to self-publish because some good friends had and were doing well. My books had been around the "traditional" publishing block and didn't sell. Now I'm SO glad they didn't sell!

I hope those of you who try Sower of Dreams like it. I've been told I have a different "voice" with the fantasies.