Anna del Mar writes hot, smart romances that soothe the soul, challenge the mind, and satisfy the heart. Her stories focus on strong heroines struggling to find their place in the world and the brave, sexy, kickass, military heroes who defy their limits to protect the women they love. She’s the author of The Asset, At the Brink and her newest romantic suspense, The Stranger. Anna enjoys traveling, hiking, skiing, and the sea. Writing is her addiction, her drug of choice, and what she wants to do all the time. The extraordinary men and women she met during her years as a Navy wife inspire the fabulous heroes and heroines at the center of her stories. When she stays put—which doesn’t happen very often—she lives in Florida with her indulgent husband and two very opinionated cats.
When a mysterious stranger is your only hope…
The scars of the past have left their mark, both physical and emotional, on former military pilot Seth Erickson. Off-grid in the far reaches of the bitter Alaskan wilderness, he wants only to be left alone with his ghosts. But he can’t ignore a woman in need—beautiful, stranded and nearly frozen with fear.
Summer Silva never imagined that the search for her missing sister would leave her abandoned on a wintry back road, barely escaping with her life from a cold-blooded killer for hire. Now, hiding out in the isolated cabin of the secretive wounded warrior who saved her, Summer knows she must do what she fears most. Putting her trust in a stranger is all she has left.
All defenses are down.
After a fiery first night together, Seth and Summer are bound by a need as powerful as a Bering Sea superstorm—and vulnerable to enemies just as fierce. For Seth, reawakened by desire, there is no sacrifice too great, no memory too dark, to keep Summer safe. But murder and treason lurk everywhere and Summer may not survive Alaska’s ruthless winter.
Why don’t you begin by telling us a little about your writing background?
I’m a Florida based romance author published by Carina Press. My first romantic suspense novel, the Amazon Bestseller, The Asset, came out this past February. The Asset was the first novel of my Wounded Warrior Series, which features strong heroines struggling to find their place in the world and the brave, hot, sexy heroes who will fight to protect their women with all they’ve got. On the heels of The Asset, come The Stranger. Just in case you’re wondering, you don’t have to read the novels of the series in order, because each book is a standalone journey.
I love writing romantic suspense but I also write an erotic romance series that packs a higher level of heat and adds edgy and naughty to the storyline. My first erotic romance, At the Brink, just came out this past May and will be followed shortly by To the Edge, which is currently on my editor’s desk.
Tell us a bit about your latest book, and what inspired you to write The Stranger.
In The Stranger, Alaskan tycoon and ex-military pilot Seth Erickson is fighting his own demons, but when he finds Summer Silva, a beautiful, warmth-loving, Miami woman stranded in the frozen wilderness, he’ll do everything in his power to keep her safe from murder, treason, and the ruthless Alaskan winter.
I wrote The Stranger after my kids dragged me out of the comfort of my writing studio. I’m not exactly the outdoor type, you know, but Alaska was totally stunning and irresistible to my writer’s mind. Hiking the backcountry, riding in tiny airplanes, floating in aluminum boats over icy lakes, it was all new to me. I knew I wanted to drop a couple of feisty characters haunted by their demons in the middle of all that spectacular, ruthless beauty and watch them deal with the challenges as their lust turned to love and then into forever love.
Did your book require a lot of research?
Yep, The Stranger required a good amount of research. My protagonists are very complex characters and their respective situations had me googling, interviewing, reading and researching a wide variety of subjects. Also, a lot of the setting research was done on the ground in Alaska. Getting to places was a challenge, because if you want to get into the backcountry, it’s almost always in tiny, brain-rattling, single-engine planes that ride like a motorcycle in the sky. I’m a white-knuckled flier as it is, so you can imagine my fear strangling the pit of my stomach every time we climbed into one of those. But I did it. And I so enjoyed seeing Alaska.
What was your goal when writing this book?
Honestly? I wanted to take the reader away in a journey that would make her forget the here and now and provide a thrilling escape with wicked undertones. My goal was to take the reader along on Seth and Summer’s journey, to get them to experience the wonders and challenges of a place as vast, stunning and intriguing as Alaska, to draw them in with a lust-to-forever-love story that warmed their hearts and blew their socks off. If by the end of the read they fell in love with Seth, Summer and Alaska, awesome. Believe me. I understand.
What type of writer are you—the one who experiences before writing, like Hemingway, or the one who mostly daydreams and fantasizes?
I think I’m very experiential. I draw lots of inspiration and detail from my own personal experiences. Traveling is a huge source of material for me and a great tool also. Which explains why The Stranger is set in Alaska. I’ve noticed that when authors write from experience, the story acquires additional depth that may not be there otherwise. But daydreaming and fantasizing are important tools to the writer as well. It allows us to project those experiences, adjust and adapt them, and drop them back into a brand, new, original canvas.
Do you write non-stop until you have a first draft, or do you edit as you move along?
I edit as I move along. I’m back and forth, growing the story, adding details, smoothing things out as I go.
Are you a disciplined writer?
Very much so. Actually, now that I think about it, it may be my only redeeming quality.
As an author, what is your greatest reward?
The reader’s time and trust.