Monday, February 21, 2011

Author Interview: Sandra Sookoo

Hi Bloggie Friends! Today I have Sandra Sookoo on to talk about herself and her book Remembering Andy.

Welcome Sandra, first tell us a little about yourself, including one thing people might not know about you.
I’ve been a writer since the age of 10. Nothing makes me happier than telling stories in a unique and different way, but I’ve only been an author for the past 3 years.

Something people might not know about me? Hmm. I like to brew coffee for the smell but don’t like to drink it. Really don’t care for the taste.

Really? That's so weird, I love the smell of coffee but not the taste too! What or who inspires you to write?
First of all, life inspires me. There’s so much to take in, from Nature, people’s interactions with each other, places, sounds, sights, but second, there is my husband. If I’m stuck on a plot, he’s there to bounce ideas off or he’ll help me with other problems. He’s one of my biggest supporters. Lastly, I write because it’s what I do. I write for me because it’s fun.

Great inspirations. So, why do you write romance specifically then?
For the promise of a happily ever after, of course! Well, I’m good with a happily for now scenario, too. I also like writing romance because the dynamics between two people in love change the conflict in a story so much.

That's an excellent reason. Tell us a little about your upcoming release, "Remembering Andy".
Remembering Andy
came about for an open call for a funny April Fool’s anthology with one of my publishers. As time went on, it became readily apparent this story would only have humorous elements instead of being overtly slap-stick funny. It actually became a very poignant love story. Here’s the blurb:

Devastated after her fiancĂ© dies in Iraq, Claudia Foster packed up her life and moved to the city of Indianapolis. She wants to lose herself in the noise, sights and sounds of a place so foreign from her upbringing, nothing could possibly remind her of her guilt surrounding Andy’s death. But fate has other plans.

Daniel Sorenson has put all thoughts of his brother Andy’s death from his mind just to get through the day yet running into Claudia again stirs up all the hidden feelings he has struggled so hard to hide. How can you love the girl who was supposed to marry your dead brother?
As the two share their grief, they also share something deeper: laughter. But is it enough? Or will they spend their whole lives simply remembering Andy and never embrace the love that could be theirs if only they could have the courage to reach for it.
Heat level—2 (sensual)

Sounds interesting. How did you come up with it?
I knew I wanted a military element in it, but I also knew that one of the principal players would be dead. This is a straight up contemporary romance, no paranormal elements or anything. It’s the story of two people, remembering a very dear person in their lives, as they rediscover the most important thing of life—love.

What did you discover about one or more of your characters you didn't expect while writing Remembering Andy?

That they were interesting people in their own right and that it is possible to get that second chance so many of us want.

Can you tell us more about your other published works?
Oh, it seems like I’m a jack of all trades when it comes to writing. I create stories across all genres and in all heat levels. So, if you’re looking for something from sweet romance to really spicy, I’ve got it. This year, I’m writing in the historical and sci-fi genres—at least for the 1st half of the year. In June, there are a couple of projects which will probably land in the contemporary and paranormal categories. I think it’s important to mix it up as a writer so the brain doesn’t get worn out and it gives your readers a wide variety to choose from.

I agree. So, with all your mixed interested, any upcoming projects?
There’s always an upcoming project! Right now I’m trying to finish a contemporary/paranormal novella. After that, I’ll work on a spicy historical then write a sequel to a sci-fi piece I did last year. Busy, busy!

Where can we find you on the web?
You can pop over to my website . From there you can connect with me on Twitter, Facebook or my Believing is Seeing blog. I often run contests and giveaways so I hope to see you on one of these social networking sites!

Please enjoy an excerpt from "Remembering Andy":
Claudia sighed, glad to let go of the fake chipper attitude. What was so wrong with wanting to stay wrapped in the grief and loneliness for awhile longer? Yes, she’d moved to Indianapolis shortly after Andy was buried in an effort to distance herself from the life she’d had with him, but the sad fact was she couldn’t shake the memories and that bothered her more than anything else.

I don’t want to remember. I don’t want to get involved with someone else and open myself up to more pain and hurt. Because trapped within the memories was the specter of the life she’d always thought she’d have. A perfect marriage like her parents. Two perfect kids—a boy and a girl. A perfect dog and cat. The perfect house and environmentally friendly cars. A perfect husband who loved to laugh and never took anything too seriously.

Now, thanks to one stupid incident of terror, she would have none of those things, and that saddened her more than merely missing Andy.
She mourned for her dreams, too.
By the time Claudia had reached the backside of the crowd, the mayor’s speech had begun. Muffled, and at times garbled, she followed the gist of it by the crowd’s reaction. Patriotism still ran high, but it had dimmed since the ‘so-called’ war began years ago. Quite possibly, these people were here because they had family members overseas and not because they supported the decisions in Washington. When it came down to brass tacks, family was more important than policy.

The crowd shifted, pushing backward. She stumbled a few steps, jolting slightly as the backs of her calves connected with the concrete lip of a fountain. A green garden-type hose ran from the fountain across the grass and vanished under a bunch of landscaping equipment. Inside the fountain, a shallow amount of water glistened in the morning sun. Obviously, the workers were getting a jump on beautifying the city.

An excited murmur rippled through the attendees. Claudia stepped on the fountain’s ledge to get a glimpse of what the mayor held up. Gleaming in the sunshine, a huge key was presented to a woman who had three small children clustered around her. Ah, the wife of a recently killed serviceman was getting the ‘key to the city’ for the day and she could park anywhere she wanted while the city picked up the tab.

Yeah, because saving twelve bucks would make up for not having the man back home.
Coming out here was a dumb idea. It’s too soon, too much. As she glanced around, she couldn’t exactly climb down from her perch without crashing into at least three people, one of whom had a tattoo of a snake on the back of his neck. Taking a few steps away from him, her feet seemed to freeze, preventing her escape as a very familiar scent assailed her.

Fresh and clean like a recent snowfall with a tiny hint of pine, her stomach clenched in sudden panic while her heartbeat accelerated. That was what Andy had smelled like. Sure, probably dozens of other men in the city used the same cologne but to her it would forever call up memories of him. Quiet summer nights on the porch swing at his farmhouse or bundled under quilts watching movies in the dead of winter.

Even though she knew it was impossible, she craned her neck, searching for a glimpse of Andy. The crowd shifted once more, pressing in on her vantage point. Claudia lost her balance and clutched at the first set of shoulders she came to—the guy who stood next to the tattooed man.

As he jerked and turned around, an apology sprang to her lips. Sapphire blue eyes sparkled in the sun. Andy’s eyes! With a surprised squeak, she released him as if he was on fire. She lost her balance, arms wind milling before finally half-stumbling, half-falling into the fountain’s pool.

It couldn’t be… As the few inches of cold water seeped through her jeans, she stared up at all six-feet of broad shoulders, fit body hidden by a designer suit and dark, sandy-blond hair cut trendy short. Stunned when he reached out a hand, a small smile lifting one corner of his mouth, she gawked even more. There was only one person with a grin like that. “Daniel?” She had no idea he’d be at the rally let alone in this part of the city.

Warmth invaded her body, centering low in her belly as she stared into the face of the man who’d been the first guy to kiss her, the first guy to break her heart, the first guy she’d ever loved—her dead fiancĂ©’s brother.

Remembering Andy will release the 2nd week of March from Eirelander Publishing. Keep an eye on my website for an exact date and other information!

We will Sandra! Thank you so much for stopping by!


  1. Thank you, Sandra, for stopping by. I loved learning more about you and your book.

  2. Very nice to discover a new author. Great interview.

  3. Thanks! It's always an easy interview when the interviewed is interesting.

  4. Thanks A.R., for letting me be on your blog today!

  5. Great interview, ladies.

    Looking forward to REMEMBERING ANDY!

  6. @ Sandra -- You're welcome. I loved the excerpt.

    @ Terry -- Thank am I!

  7. Thanks for coming by Linda and Taryn :-)