Monday, December 16, 2013

On 9:51 AM | By
Tell us about yourself:
I grew up in Memphis, Tennessee and now live in Malibu California. I am a wife, a step mother to six amazing kids (all grown up), a mother to two female German Shepherds and two black cats. Along with being a writer, I loved being a music disc jockey of five different radio formats during a nine year career in Memphis. When I moved to Los Angeles, I worked as an artist representative in the music business then moved to Galway, Ireland where I worked with local musicians. My second novel concerns my time in Ireland! Back in California, I married and started teaching Pilates and Ballet while I focused on writing a weekly column for the local newspaper, along with national magazines and whoever else would publish me. My writing career has been growing steadily since! “A Portal in Time” is my first published novel and I am having a wonderful time!

What inspires you?
Always, good music. It is art at its finest. I like singer-songwriters with a band around them who understands the mood and the vision. Think the Dave Matthews Band! I love the United Kingdom and am drawn to all things Celtic- Castles, mist, a sense of magical history. I am inspired by a spiritual sense of purpose and connection, the idea that I am living my life with meaning specific to what I can give to others.

What inspired the premise for “A Portal in Time?”
My husband and I stayed in an historic hotel in Carmel-by-the-Sea, California on the Monterey Peninsula. The climate there reminds me of Ireland and there is something mystical about the area for all its forested environs set on the Pacific Ocean. The hotel felt absolutely haunted to me, so much so it kept me up at night! I asked the hotel’s concierge about the hotel’s history and learned it began as a private residence in the early 1900’s. Upon hearing this, I immediately started formulating the premise for “A Portal in Time.”

Why is the setting so important?
There is such an historic feel to Carmel-by-the Sea. The sidewalks are cobblestone, there are no neon signs or chain stores in the village, the weather is temperate year-round and there is a mist in the air in the early evenings that makes Carmel dream-like. One feels they are back in time in a Cotswold village, and the houses in Carmel all look like fairy cottages. Carmel has been this way since the early 1900’s when artists of various pursuits settled the region. I wanted to tell a story that included the lives of these artists.

What are your aspirations as an author?I only want to tell stories. I want to give my readers an experience that moves them or asks a question that once considered, will take them into a deeper understanding of themselves and the people around them. Inspiration by its very nature makes one richer in experience and teaches us that there is great beauty and meaning in the life we lead now.

Authors who have influenced my work:
Marianne Zimmer Bradley, Phillipa Gregory and Pat Conroy. All are terrific story tellers who master the craft of novel writing. All draw from real life as they weave their stories. They write about the subtle nuances that motivate the human psyche and how lives are shaped therefore.

Tell us about your new release.
I wrote the story I would like to read! A real page turner with a point and a destination involving beautiful characters who are in touch with the sense of magic all around them. They see beneath the layers of the seemingly ordinary and therefore lead lives in touch with many dimensions and possibilities. My characters could be called dreamers, but I like to think they truly know what’s going on. “A Portal in Time” concerns beautiful people in a beautiful setting who have an eerie similarity and affinity with the Monterey Peninsula. It may be sheer coincidence, but then again, it may not be! You’ll have to read the book and when you do, you’ll be taken on a magical journey whose destination asks you to consider your own thoughts regarding the continuum of your own life.

Some Quickies:
Talking/Texting? Talking
Irish or Italian? Irish
Dark or light eyes? Light
Chiseled jawline or abs? Jawline
Kilt or leather pants? Kilt
Holding hands or attention? Attention
Mountain or Beach? Beach

A Portal In Time

Available at:, B&, All Romance e-books, Overdrive, and coming soon: Audible in audiobooks!

It is the year 2000: Enigmatic and spirited Anna Lucera is gifted with an uncanny sixth sense and is intrigued by all things mystical. When her green cat eyes and long black hair capture the attention of a young lawyer named Kevin Townsend, a romance ensues which leads them to the hauntingly beautiful region on California’s Monterey Peninsula called Carmel-By-The-Sea where Anna is intuitively drawn to The Madiera Hotel. Everything about the hotel and the Monterey Peninsula heightens her senses and speaks to Anna as if she had been there before.

Rich in history, mystique and foreshadow, “A Portal in Time” is an intertwined story of two linear romances that are steeped in the language and social mores of two different time periods. The words and actions of the vibrant characters fit seamlessly together and bridge the time frames like pieces of a puzzle.

That which draws two people into the arms of love is often times eerily familiar and that which resounds in the depth of our memory can sometimes spring from a portal in time.

September 23, 1907
Carmel, California

She walked down the lane, braced against the gusting wind twisting her skirt into tangles around her ankles. Sweeping her hair to the left, she clasped it firmly in the same hand that held the top of her cloak.

Determinedly, she marched forward until the lane veered to a sharp right and headed straight down to the sea. When she reached the place where the lane met the sand, she leaned over quickly and removed her lace-up shoes. Securing them tightly in her right hand, she walked onto the beach, barely breaking its surface.

The waves came forward in a mounting swell and with their forward progression, more of the beach disappeared into the steel-gray of the Pacific Ocean. It was the end of the day, and the tide labored forcibly beneath the fading blue sky. She stood listening intently to the fury of the wind as it intermittently drowned out the pulsating rhythm of the sea. Gathering herself, she turned to the right, to the place in the water she had come to see.

Shielding her eyes from the setting sun, Valeria Sienna Kristiansen steadied her gaze and spoke into the wind as a chill began to creep up her spine.

“This place will now be a portal in time.”

Author Links:


Renee Vincent / Gracie Lee Rose said...

Welcome to Deep In The Heart Romance, Claire! Love the cover of this book - how pretty!!!

Wishing you all the best!

JackieW said...

Your book sounds like one I would enjoy reading. Always interested in reading authors new to me.

Melissa Keir said...

What a beautiful cover. You have me so intrigued with Carmel by the Sea, I want to go there.

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