Marian P. Merritt - Lagniappe

Where the Bayous Meet the Mountains

Monday, October 19, 2015

Niki Turner - Santiago Sol

Good Monday Morning Readers!

Today, Niki Turner visits 
Lagniappe to discuss her 
latest release, Santiago Sol.

Welcome, Niki!

Tell us a little about SANTIAGO SOL:
I was able to take three trips to Chile, and fell in love with the nation. When Pelican’s call for submissions to the Passport to Romance collection included a story set in Santiago, I decided to take the challenge, which included finding a way to tie three plot elements into the tale. For Chile, the items were a party dress, a diary, and a walking stick.

At the time, I was in a writing funk, and about ready to give up. Again. (Haven’t we all tried to ‘quit’ writing at least once?) Having a fresh project with some prompts was just what I needed.

In Santiago Sol, heroine Tansy Chastain steps outside her comfort zone to fulfill the request of an elderly friend and finds herself on the other side of the world in Chile, at the mercy of handsome and wealthy Sebastian, who’s hiding his real identity. Tansy’s quest endangers her life, and brings her to a new place of faith. Sebastian will be challenged to forgive, and to seek forgiveness as Tansy’s quest collides with his hope for the future.

Do you listen to music when you write? If so, what's on your writing playlist these days?
It depends on the story for me. When I write contemporary I don’t need music, but I find that for historical fiction listening to the music of the era helps me get a better feel for my characters. Thank God for the Internet, and access to music we might otherwise never hear!

What is the best WRITING advice you’ve received?
“If you’re writing a romance, the romance IS the plot.” ~ Paula Moldenhauer.

If you weren't a writer, what would be another dream job?
Honestly, being a writer IS my dream job, since I was a teenager and wrote my first romance on a 1940s-era typewriter. However, my ideal writing life included a high-rise apartment in Manhattan… the budget is not there yet.

Is there anything you find particularly challenging in your writing?
I fight the same battle with my stories that I fight with my body: the dreaded sagging middle. Every story I’ve completed has had several thousand words of blubber in the middle that get cut sometime in the writing process. I wish it were as easy to hit “delete” on my muffin top!

What was one of the most surprising things you've learned while writing your books?
I researched the history of women’s skiing for The Skiing Suitor (Forget-Me-Not Romances) and was genuinely horrified to find out that women were not allowed to compete in Olympic ski jumping until 2014, even though they’d been jumping competitively almost as long as men.

What can we expect from you in the future?
My next two novellas are due to the publisher in January and April. Fully Persuaded will be part of volume 2 of the Austen in Austen series from Whitefire Publishing. First Comes Pie will be one of nine stories in the Blue Ribbon Brides collection from Barbour. I’m looking forward to writing these two stories!

Please include buy links and your website/FB/Twitter etc links.
(if I get the Amazon/B&N links before Thursday I’ll get them to you)





Biscuits or Dinner Roll? Dinner roll, because of “Heidi,” and how she hid her soft, white dinner rolls in her pockets for her friend.

Nora Roberts or Diana Gabaldon?
AHHH!!! Impossible choice! But if I could only read one for the rest of my life, it would be Diana Gabaldon. Why? Well, the characters, but also because I learn so much real, practical information. I was looking for edible plants on my last hiking trip!

Superman or Batman?
Batman, because he’s a superhero in spite of himself, in spite of his past baggage, and the fact he doesn’t actually have any superpowers… just his brains and his brawn. And I like black.

Vacation: Beach or Mountains?
I live in the mountains, so that’s not a vacation. Definitely the beach. I crave the beach.

Women’s Fiction or Romance?
LOL. We’ve talked about this. Romance, but as I get older I like to see more women’s fiction elements in the story. I’d really like to see romances with older heroines! We middle-aged ladies need hope and inspiration, too! 

Niki Turner is a novelist, journalist, blogger, and the production manager for the Rio Blanco Herald Times weekly newspaper, one of the oldest continuously operating newspapers in Colorado. Her first completed manuscript earned second place in the Touched By Love 2009 contemporary category romance contest. She also blogs at and is a co-blogger at
Niki is a Colorado native who grew up in Glenwood Springs—home of the world’s largest hot springs pool. She married her high school sweetheart 25 years ago. They have four children, four grandchildren, and two West Highland White Terriers.
In 2014, she published “Sadie’s Gift” as one of the Christmas Traditions novella collection with eight other authors.  The Skiing Suitor, one of the Love’s Sporting Chance series published by Forget-Me-Not Romances, released in August 2015. Her most recent project, “Santiago Sol,” was published by Pelican Book Group as part of the Passport to Romance novella collection. She’s currently working on a new novella for Whitefire Publishing and another one for Barbour House.

Niki, thanks for sharing!

Readers, thanks for visiting Lagniappe.

Niki's questions for you:

What’s the farthest from home you’ve ever traveled? 
How did it change you? 

I pray you find 
"a little something extra" 
in each of your days.



Ann Ellison said...

Enjoyed the interview. I am reading Santiago Sol now and really enjoying it. I guess the furtherest I have traveled is New York City with my sisters. It was an awesome trip. It sure gave me a love for the theater.

Marian Pellegrin Merritt said...

Ann, thanks for stopping by. New York is really a fun place to visit! I imagine going with sisters would be especially fun!