Meet Barbara White Daille:
Barbara hopes you will enjoy her books and will find your own storytelling magic in them. Book Description: Sam Robertson's life just changed. In one short day, he found out that he's a daddy; that his beautiful little girl, Becky, is deaf; and that her aunt, sign language teacher Kayla Ward, intends to fight him for custody. There are plenty of reasons Sam shouldn't fall for Kayla. A city girl like her has no place on his ranch, particularly when she's his ex-wife's gorgeous sister. But thanks to the judge's orders, Sam's spending a lot of time with Kayla, trying to give Becky the stable home she's never known. Despite their ongoing custody battle, Sam and Kayla's love for Becky brings them closer than they ever expected, and Sam knows that no matter who wins in court, he could still lose—Kayla or his daughter.
Sam Robertson's life just changed. In one short day, he found out that he's a daddy; that his beautiful little girl, Becky, is deaf; and that her aunt, sign language teacher Kayla Ward, intends to fight him for custody.
There are plenty of reasons Sam shouldn't fall for Kayla. A city girl like her has no place on his ranch, particularly when she's his ex-wife's gorgeous sister. But thanks to the judge's orders, Sam's spending a lot of time with Kayla, trying to give Becky the stable home she's never known.
Despite their ongoing custody battle, Sam and Kayla's love for Becky brings them closer than they ever expected, and Sam knows that no matter who wins in court, he could still lose—Kayla or his daughter.
Thanks, Marilyn! I’m very glad to be here.
Is there a back story to A Rancher’s Pride?
Yes, there’s a story-behind-the-story as far as the idea for the book. I wanted to take a well-loved plot (a character who suddenly “inherits” a child) and put a different spin on it.
In this case, a man who has never even known he was a father is suddenly given custody of a four-year-old. And to complicate matters for him, he has no way of communicating with her because she speaks another language.
With all my books, I try to add something a little different, so the idea of searching for a twist came first. The thought of using a deaf character came about because, in my “other” life, I’m a certified American Sign Language interpreter.
Also, as some who loves working with words, I loved the challenge of weaving a visual language into the story!
What is one thing in your history that has influenced your writing?
Probably, the fact that I became an avid reader when I was very young. Naturally, I started with children’s books, which I think influenced me in several ways.
My introduction to reading through Dr. Seuss and other authors who use rhyme and non-traditional structure and vocabulary made me take notice of rhythm and pacing, which I hope helps me write better books.
Also, I think children’s books taught me to “write tight.” I’m a character-driven writer, but I like to keep the story moving through action and dialogue. And because knowing what the hero and heroine are feeling in a romance is important, I’ll focus more on showing their emotions than describing their physical characteristics.
The other thing is, growing up reading every children’s mystery in sight gave me a love for genre fiction. Though I also read and enjoy literary books, I’m proud to be an author of “popular fiction.”
Of all of your characters, do you have a favorite you identify with and why?
That’s a tough question for me because as I said above, I write from character, which makes me relate to all my story people. Not only that, I like to put them in situations that tug at their emotions. As a result, I feel sympathy for them, too.
In answer, I’d have to say I identify with all my heroines in one way or another—and I hope my readers do, also. We may not share the same hopes and dreams or fight to overcome the same problems and conflicts, but we’re all women—real or fictional—and if there’s one thing I think we can do, it’s step into another woman’s shoes.
Do you plot your stories or let your characters lead you?
Both. I create a full outline for the book and usually know where I’m going. Sometimes a character refuses to do what I had planned. At that point, I’ll let him or her take the lead for a little while just to see what happens.
When the plot starts to change, I can tell quickly whether it’s going in a bad direction or a good one. Normally, these aren’t huge turns that put me onto another road entirely. They’re more like S-curves on the main road that get me to the same destination but make the trip a little more interesting.
Thing your heroine would never be caught dead doing/saying:
In A RANCHER’S PRIDE, my heroine, Kayla, loves her four-year-old niece as though she were her own child. While Kayla might be a little overprotective of Becky at times when she’s feeling out of her element, she knows Becky’s deafness doesn’t make her different from any other child her age.
One thing Kayla would never say is: “Becky can’t do that.”
Scene in the book that moved you the most as you wrote it, or made you the most happy?
To recap the story idea: the hero, Sam, has “inherited” a four-year-old child he’s never met—and never even knew he’d fathered. It’s a tough situation for anyone to encounter, and it’s made even more heart-wrenching by the fact that Sam can’t communicate with his own child.
The scene in the book when he first attempts to make a connection with Becky—when he waits, heart in his throat, to see how she will respond—made me cry. I recently re-read the book and cried again.
Okay, I’ll confess! I’m tearing up just thinking about it. ;-)
I’m currently working on two more stories that will be published by Harlequin American Romance, both of which are stand-alone books set in the same small town as A RANCHER’S PRIDE.
The first is the story of an injured rodeo cowboy who returns to his hometown seeking to right some old wrongs. There, he encounters his former high-school sweetheart, now a single mom struggling to survive financially and having trouble with her preteen daughter. She’s the woman he most needs to get square with. But he’s the one man she has to avoid.
The second book is the story of a young, widowed business owner who lost her Army hero husband and is determined to make a life for herself and her three kids. The rancher hero is just as single-minded in his goal to keep a promise he made—a promise that will once again turn the heroine’s world upside down.
What is something you definitely want readers to know about you?
With every book I write, I’m trying to keep a promise to them.
I’ve been a reader since before I can remember and a writer since the age of nine. Even then, when I’d only written one story, I knew without doubt what my goal as an author would be: to bring the same enjoyment to my readers that I receive when I read other authors’ books.
Before I let you go is there anything I forgot to ask that you want the readers and fans to know?
If they read any of my books, I’d love to hear what they thought about them! All my contact info is below.
Also, I’ve just begun a blog tour to celebrate the release of A RANCHER’S PRIDE, and I hope to see them along the way. They can find the tour schedule on my website/blog.
Where Barbara can be found:
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Barbara will offer a book from her backlist for North America residents only. To win a copy, comment here, follow Barbara on Facebook. Come back here and leave your email address. The Winner will be announced June 3rd.