Candis Terry was born and raised near the sunny beaches of Southern California and now makes her home on an Idaho farm. She’s experienced life in such diverse ways as working in a Hollywood recording studio to chasing down wayward steers. Only one thing has remained the same: her passion for writing stories about relationships, the push and pull in the search for love, and the security one finds in their own happily ever after.
Jen: Please tell us about your newest release and where the idea came from.
Candis: Anything But Sweet is about former Marine and cowboy Reno Wilder—a man who’s lost everything and is determined to keep things exactly the same because he fears change means more loss—and Charlotte (Charli) Brooks, a makeover show host/designer who comes into his life and literally wants to change everything. To say they butt heads is an understatement.
A man who doesn’t like change . . .
The Wilder family is something of a Sweet, TX institution: between their yearly BBQ blow-outs and their Hardware and Feed store, they’re an institution—an institution that ex-marine Reno Wilder has tried to preserve, in honor of his lost loved ones. But it seems like he’s the only one who’s got any respect left for traditions when a new TV makeover show rolls in to renovate Sweet to bring in more tourists. Everyone is pleased except Reno—and this cowboy is determined to keep everything just the way he likes it.
A woman who wants to change everything . . .
Inquisitive. Stubborn. Smart. Drop dead gorgeous. That would be makeover show host and designer, Charlotte Brooks—the woman Reno has declared war against. And yet, he can’t seem to keep away from her, or to get her off his mind. Charlotte isn’t afraid to back down from a challenge—of any kind—and she’s promised to prove to Reno that change can be sexy, hot, and very, very sweet, if Reno and Charli learn to let go of their pasts and grab hold of a future full of promise.
Jen: What kind of research did you do for this book?
Candis: My husband and I packed up and headed to Texas Hill Country where Anything But Sweet takes place. We rented a car and covered every place we could find on a map and some that weren’t. We talked to anyone who would give us a minute and were overjoyed to find that Texans are super friendly and willing to share their knowledge.
Also, I’m lucky enough to know a young man who is a former Marine who was willing to share a lot of his information and some of his stories from the times he was deployed. His experiences really helped me define Reno Wilder.
Jen: What’s the most challenging aspect of writing? Easiest? Most rewarding?
Candis: The most challenging are probably the deadlines. The easiest is creating the characters. The most rewarding is seeing those characters come to life and take over so all I have to do is keep my fingers on the keyboard.
Jen: Who are some of your favorite authors? What are you reading now?
Candis: We could be here all day if I decided to name all my favorite authors. A few are Susan Elizabeth Phillips, Rachel Gibson, Jill Shalvis, Kristin Higgins, Janet Evanovich, J.R. Ward, Teri Garey, Kerrylyn Sparks, Coreene Callahan, Tessa Dare, Julia Quinn, Dean Koontz, and of course, Nora Roberts.
Jen: How do you come up with characters names?
Candis: I call my daughter. She comes over and I describe the characters and she helps me name them. We usually jot down about ten ideas and then start deleting from there. She’s very good at it. And it’s a fun thing for us to do together.
Jen: What do you do in your free time?
Candis: I love the outdoors. My family and I spend a lot of our time camping, fishing, ATVing, and enjoying the beautiful Idaho Wilderness. I have a huge country garden where I like to grow tomatoes, zucchini, onions, pumpkins, and more. I’ll admit I’m not very good at it but I keep trying. And I love to make fairy gardens with my granddaughter.
Jen: What’s next for you?
Candis: The second book in the Sweet, Texas series is titled Sweetest Mistake and will be available in December 2013. I’m currently writing the third book in the series which is titled Something Sweeter and will be released sometime in 2014.