If you are the first person to correctly identify the GREAT BEGINNING to a classic novel, Brenda will send you an e-copy of CHEF D'AMOUR. Please leave us some way to contact you with your answer.

CHEF D'AMOUR was named a Top Pick by Delta at The Romance Reviews – see her review at

What classic novel begins like this:

In those days cheap apartments were almost impossible to find in Manhattan, so I had to move to Brooklyn. This was in 1947, and one of the pleasant features of that summer which I so vividly remember was the weather, which was sunny and mild, flower-fragrant, almost as if the days had been arrested in a seemingly perpetual springtime. I was grateful for that if for nothing else, since my youth, I felt, was at its lowest ebb.
— Author: William Styron
HINT! HINT! HINT!  Meryl Streep won the Academy Award for Best Actress in this devastating 1982 movie adaptation of the novel


Meryl Streep won the Academy Award for Best Actress in this devastating 1982 movie adaptation of the novel

While you're thinking about that, let me tell you more about Brenda's GREAT BEGINNING.

Give us your Great Beginning, where were you born and where are you now?

Do you know where Vancouver, British Columbia is? Where the 2010 Winter Olympics were held? I was born about 800 kilometers north of there, pretty much smack-dab in the middle of the province, in a city called Prince George (some of us were pretty excited when William and Kate named their son after us <wink>). After high school  I enrolled in the Radio Broadcasting program at the BC Institute of Technology (in Burnaby, but for those of us from the north it's all Vancouver) and applied to lots of jobs anywhere but home. As luck would have it, the job I did get took me right back to Prince George, where I still live – and I love it here.


One word to describe yourself from:

Wow, this is hard. I probably should ask everyone what word they want, but I'm afraid to.

You: snarky

Your Significant Other: organized

Your Best Friend: funny

Your Mother: loyal

Your children:Mom

How did the idea for your book, CHEF D'AMOUR come about?

 About four months after graduating from my radio program, I was hired to work at my hometown's local television station as a Writer/Producer. Part of my job involved going out on location to various businesses and working with a cameraman to get the shots we needed. After three months, that cameraman and I started dating – and we've been together ever since. 

That was Idea Kernel One, so to speak. Idea Kernel Two is my own prejudice when it comes to romance reality TV shows. Like my heroine, Jemma, I simply can't understand why anyone believes a TV show is the place to find the person you will spend the rest of your life with. But what if the bachelor was reluctant, and had other reasons for joining the show? And what if he was attracted to one of the crew members – which is strictly against the rules? Now that was something I could sink my writing teeth into!


Tell us how your journey in publishing began?

 I've always been a writer. As well as TV commercials, I've written documentaries, website copy, poetry (in my teen years – who didn't?) and more. I had a number of novels fade away around page 80. But one story, about a Natural Resource student and a Conservation Officer caught in a poaching ring, wouldn't die. Then my husband bought me my very own laptop for Christmas 2010, and I finally finished the damned thing. I submitted it to one large publishing company and heard nothing. Then I submitted it The Wild Rose Press, and an editor there said, while it needed some work, if I was willing to take some of her suggestions, she would be willing to reconsider it. I did what she said (not without some grumbling) and the result was MOUNTAIN FIRE, published January 2012. Since then I've completed two other manuscripts, including CHEF D'AMOUR (published August 29, 2014 also by The Wild Rose Press) and am working on a fourth.


Give us the opening lines of your RITA acceptance speech. (Don’t leave me hanging here, haven’t we all had that fantasy?)

When I first started writing, this moment wasn't even on my radar. All I wanted was to see my book in print, hold it in my hands. And if it hadn't been for the love and support of my husband, my parents and my children, I wouldn't be here today.


And now give us that Great Beginning to CHEF D'AMOUR

She wanted to punch him in the face. Jemma Hedges’s fingers clenched into a fist, anticipating the smack of her knuckles against his beak of a nose. Not a beak. A snout. Why had she never noticed before? Dane Smythe had a nose like a pig.

“So, what do you say? Want to give it a try?” He licked his lips with a moist pink tongue and she shuddered. A disgusting pig.

He tightened his hold on the stacked blonde next to him and the woman snuggled closer, her eyes watching Jemma avidly. Amber Something. Jemma hadn’t caught her last name. Not that it mattered.

“Not on your life.”

The leer on his face hardened. “You’re kidding, right? Don’t tell me you’ve never done it before.”

She stared at him from behind long bangs draped over one eye. “Why the hell would you say that?”

“It doesn’t matter if you haven’t.” Amber’s voice was low and breathy, provocative and sinful. “I wouldn’t mind...initiating you.”

Available on Amazon.