Welcome. We’re so excited to have Chris Almeida and Cecilia Aubrey here with us today on Nights of Passion blog.
NOP: Please tell our readers about Countermeasure.
Countermeasure is our latest body of work. It is the first of a series involving Trevor Bauer and Cassandra James. In this first novel, Trevor Bauer, an NSA analyst is on the hunt for clues to his parent’s disappearance. Following a lead throws him in the path of Cassandra James, an ex CIA officer turned security assurance agent, who is on the trail of an infiltrator who stole a formula she was safeguarding. Thinking Trevor is her thief, she confronts him. Their meeting sets them on a course across the ocean and into a world of data espionage, murder, and romance.
NOP: What inspired you to write Countermeasure?
The inspiration was a dream that Chris had melding technology, intrigue and romance. It was the spark to the story we began to role play. From that little spark we created the characters, their backstory and past long before their story took shape. They were (and are) a living extension of us. We took the story to a role playing environment as a test to find out if they could compete against the paranormal groups that ruled the role playing world. Surprisingly, we found a loyal following once we began to play their story. We had readers hounding us for the next chapters. It was during the posting of the story that eventually became To Russia with Love, that we realized we had to write the book about how they met and the events that led them to begin a life of adventure together and Countermeasure was born.
NOP: Of all the characters you have created, do you have a favorite? If so, who is it and why is he/she your favorite?
Trevor and Cassie are our favorites. The characters from our Countermeasure novel, while not 100% based on us, do have some of our background— Chris’s geekiness and my military upbringing—and both have our humor mixed in.
NOP: How would your hero and heroine have spent Christmas?
Quiet evening at home surrounded by friends enjoying good food, great music and lots of laughter.
NOP: If you were to give a Christmas gift to your hero, what would it be and why?
His own mini-super computer. He lives for that kind of stuff. Of course Cassie would have to drag him up for air with her own special allure.
NOP: What advice do you have for new writers who are striving to get published?
Read everything you can get your hands on and more importantly write a lot. Stand tall for your own style, make it even more personable, and gather a group of friends and followers behind you as a support group. Do not let strong critics influence your voice or story in a way that you don’t like or approve of in the end. Use a critique group to keep you grounded, as a guidance tool, but do not let it change the core of what makes you and your story unique.
We have also found that there are a lot of resources available. Join an organization like the Romance Writers of America (RWA) group and a local chapter. They have a number of workshops and resources to help guide veteran and newbie writers alike. Research writer blogs, and know your genre. Learn to self-promote and to manage your career. Join social networks such as Twitter and take advantage of what other authors, agents and publishers post and blog on. There is a wealth of information within those pieces.
NOP: If you were unable to write, what other profession would be of interest to you?
Chris ~ I am a programmer by trade so I would just continue doing what I do since I do it for the love of technology.
Cecilia ~ I am a Marketing Program Manager at my day job, however, if I could choose something else it would be to manage a vineyard in the Napa Valley.
NOP: How do you deal with the dreaded “doubt monster”?
We go paranoid from time to time like everyone else but we have a strong circle of friends who ground us. We also have each other to slap one or the other upside the head as a reality check. But at the end of the day we strongly believe in our story and that’s wha pulls us through.
NOP: Do you ever get writer’s block and if so, how do you deal with it?
We do, usually when we are close to major stepping stone. We turn to friends, laughter, music, reading and research to distract us and usually we end up back on track. The key is to not fight it.
NOP: If you could be any fictional character, who would that be and why?
Cecilia ~ It would have to be Cassandra. Her independent but passionate nature intrigues me. I love that once she committed herself to Trevor she went let loose and jumped in with both feet and never looked back. In some ways I already feel like her.
Chris ~I would definitely be Trevor. His life since meeting Cassandra had gone from 0 to 100 in 5 seconds. The many adventures they get into while handling the recovery of data is what I would consider a hell of a ride.
NOP: Who is your favorite author?
We don’t really have just one favorite author, they are many. Karen Marie Moning, J.R. Ward, Lara Adrian, Laurel Hamilton, J.D. Robb, Katie McKalister, Robert Ludlum, Tom Clancy, Bernard Shaw, Yeats, Wilde and more…
NOP: What is your favorite novel?
Cecilia ~ Scarlet Pimpernel by Baroness Emmuska Orczy
Chris ~ The Importance of Being Ernest by Oscar Wilde
NOP: What’s next for you?
We are working on our next to books in the Series, To Russia with Love, and Alternate Connection. To Russia With Love already has a tentative release date set to Summer of 2012.
NOP: Where can readers find you on the web?
Chris is the ultimate geek so we are everywhere! You can find us through the following links:
CA Duo Books – http://caduobooks.com
Countermeasureseries – http://countermeasureseries.com
GoodReads Author Pages:
Amazon Author Pages:
Chris and Cecilia have agreed to give one of our lucky readers a copy of their book. To qualify you must type the words. “I want Nine Ladies Dancing” into your comment. Good luck to all who comment.