Interview with Paranormal Romance Author Judy Serrano: "I am well-known for twisting predicatable endings"

Today's guest is Judy Serrano, author of the paranormal romance, LINKED.  If you'd like to ask Judy a question about her book, leave a comment below!   Judy's interview is being brought to you by Pump Up Your Book!


Q: Welcome to The Writer's Life!  Now that your book has been published, we’d love to find out more about the process.  Can we begin by having you take us at the beginning?  Where did you come up with the idea to write your book?

I always begin with something real. I was a substitute teacher before I became a high school English teacher, and I originally wanted to write about my experiences. My characters take me on the journey, not the other way around, so I may have put Daphne in a classroom, but she ended up making time with a couple of gangster vampires.

Q: How hard was it to write a book like this and do you have any tips that you could pass on which would make the journey easier for other writers?

Always be prepared to write when the moment hits you. Some people carry a pad, some bring their laptops with them, I carry my flash drive with me everywhere. I always warn people that if they do something to make me mad when I’m carrying, that they may find themselves meeting a terrible death in my next novel. And it won’t be pretty.

Q: Who is your publisher and how did you find them or did you self-publish?

I originally published with Black Rose Writing. They are a small publishing house that has some of my other novels. Now Linked is published by 6K Publishing. Don’t tell anyone but I have kind of an “in” with the owner. (He’s my husband.)

Q: Is there anything that surprised you about getting your first book published?

Oh yes! My first book is called Easter’s Lilly. What surprised me most was how people seemed to get addicted to Lilly. Easter’s Lilly is about a girl who inadvertently marries into the Mexican Mafia. She marries the kingpin and falls in love with his brother. I was quite surprised at how the people who loved Lilly, inhaled the books like the air that they breathe.

Q: What other books (if any) are you working on and when will they be published?

I have a few irons in the fire. I am working on book seven of the Easter’s Lilly Series and book six, The Last Fall, should be out any day now. I also have a book that is under wraps right now, but I am not finished writing it yet.

Q: What’s your favorite place to hang out online?

I know that this will date me a little, but I am a Facebook fan. Facebook gives me the opportunity to keep up with my family, friends, colleagues, and readers all at the same time.

Q: What’s your nightly ritual before retiring for the night?

I am a busy girl. I teach high school English, so I make sure my grading is done. Next, I prepare lunch for the children and husband for the morning. Somewhere in there, I go to the gym to workout. Before I actually hit the sack, I turn the TV on and watch something funny, sometimes with a glass of vino in my hand. I put my feet up, let out a breath, and enjoy the laughter.

Q: Finally, what message (if any) are you trying to get across with your book?

I’m not sure I really have a message, per say. I suppose if I had to choose one it would be that love conquers all, and good will ultimately win over evil. Although I am well-known for my cliffhanger endings, and I tend to stay away from a happily ever after expectation, lovers always seem to find their way to each other. Or do they? I am also well-known for twisting predictable endings.
Q: Thank you again for this interview!  Do you have any final words?

Thank you so much for taking the time to chat with me today. I hope you will go to my website at and check out my other books as well. If you find yourself “linked” to Linked, don’t forget to check out book two, First Blood. If you loved Dante in book 1, you will die for him in book 2, I promise.

About the Author

Judy Serrano holds a Master of Arts in English from Texas A&M University, Commerce. She is the owner of Make Cents Editing Service, and was an adjunct professor at a local college. Currently she teaches high school English and is a freelance writer for certain on-line publications. Judy also writes romantic suspense and paranormal romance novels. She is the author of The Easter’s Lilly Series, The Linked Seriesand Ivy Vines, Visions.

Although originally form New York, Judy resides in Texas with her husband, four boys, four dogs and now two cats. She sings and plays guitar when she has time and enjoys singing with her very musical family in church when she is able.

Her latest book is the paranormal romance, LINKED.

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About the Book:

Author: Judy Serrano
Publisher: 6K Publishing
Pages: 273
Genre: Paranormal Romance

Daphne Foster is a substitute teacher stuck in an English class, waiting for that dreaded parent-teacher conference. With much preparation and anxiety, she encounters the unforgettable Charlie Cross. His charm and good looks, win her over but rumors of his involvement with organized crime make his continued disappearances disturbing.
In walks Heathcliff Vanderpool, creating a love triangle of unusual sorts. Unknown to Daphne, Heathcliff and Charlie are old friends: Older than she could have imagined. With Charlie away on business, Daphne and Heathcliff discover a passion between them lying beneath the surface. As their souls link, pulling away from Charlie becomes next to impossible. Will his involvement in organized crime consume them both before she’s able to get free? When you become “linked,” the choice may not be your own.

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Book Excerpt:
The blood was pulsating through my veins and when I looked down, my hands were shaking. All that schooling and relentless training still did not prepare me for what was coming next. What would I say, and how would they react? All the uncertainty was driving me mad. Sometimes I doubted my very own motives. I took this job out of necessity, not out of a passion for my craft, and with every passing day, I grew just a little more disheartened.
I am a substitute teacher and this is my very first parent-teacher conference. Sometimes the meager pay that I bring home for this incredulous journey hardly seems worth it. I earned my degree, got my certification, and couldn’t find a job as a teacher. So, the principal promised me a teaching position if I would just do this one last thing… be a long-term sub for a high school English class. This has not been my finest hour. The teacher I replaced had already made a mess of things and the students were failing left and right. One of the moms called and demanded to know why her little Michael was failing. Maybe if he did his homework… is of course what I wanted to say, but now I have to face her and tell her why little Michael is my least favorite student in the class.
I got all my papers together and sat back down at my desk when Michael walked through my door. “Michael,” I started. “What are you doing here?”
Just then a very handsome man walked in behind him. He was about 5ft. 10, blond and blue-eyed, wearing faded jeans and a button-down, powder blue sports shirt. When he smiled, my knees went weak and I’m sure my face flushed. “I’m Charles Cross,” he said, putting out his hand to shake mine. “My friends call me Charlie.” He smiled. “You look surprised. We do have an appointment today, don’t we? I hope I didn’t get the date wrong.”
“I’m sorry, I was expecting Michael’s mother,” I told him. “And yes, we have an appointment. I’m Daphne Foster.”
“She was unavailable,” he continued. “So now I guess you’re stuck with me.” He pushed Michael ahead of him so that he would move farther into the room. I’m sure my face was still red.
“I don’t mind,” I told him. Little did he know that my insides were doing somersaults.  “Please, sit down.” I motioned to the two chairs that I had strategically positioned in front of my desk.
“I understand that you’re not even really a teacher,” was his icebreaker.
“I’m certified,” I replied, trying not to sound too defensive. “I have just been unable to find a full-time position. But I assure you, Mr. Cross, I am more than qualified to teach your son’s class.”
“Good to know,” he answered, sitting back and starting to relax. “Michael is generally a good student,” he continued. “But he appears to be carrying a 60 in your class. Tell me what you think the problem is so that I can help him fix it.”
Michael was staring down at the floor with his baseball cap on backwards. I’m sure if he was standing up, we’d both be able to see his boxer shorts, peeking out beneath his sagging pants. “For starters,” I bravely began, “he can lose the baseball cap.” Michael sneered at me. “He’s not allowed to have it on during school hours, yet he always walks through the door with it on his head. This is a continuous waste of my valuable time, since we seem to need to argue about its importance, daily.” Charlie laughed, which frustrated me a bit. “He hasn’t turned in one homework assignment since I’ve been here, and he is very disruptive during class.”
“Well, Miss Foster,” he responded in a condescending tone, “sounds to me like you have a problem with my son.”
“Mr. Cross,” I replied, trying to conceal the agitation in my voice,  “you are the one with the problem.” He sat up, giving me his full attention. I must admit that I began to feel my blood pressure rise. “I suggest that you get a handle on this boy before I fail him and do not underestimate me, because I will do it.”
“Miss Foster, do you know who I am?” he asked. Michael smiled at this point and looked me square in the eyes.
“I don’t care if you’re Obama’s long lost son. He doesn’t do his work, he fails… pretty simple, really.”
He stood up and motioned for his son to stand. “I suspect that you will change your mind.”
I stood up at that point and put out my hand. “Thank you for coming in to see me, Mr. Cross… Michael.”
“Daphne.” My name glided off his tongue like music. “Such a beautiful name.” He shook my hand. “The pleasure was all mine.”

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