Rules of Engagement by Amber Gilchrist – Interview & Giveaway


Rules Tour
Rules of EngagementRules of Engagement

For Annemarie Whitted, her youngest sister’s engagement starts as a happy event, and ends as a slap in the face when she comes to the harsh realization that she’s a failure at relationships, a person in stasis. Annemarie is motivated and organized, a woman on a mission, and she’s getting married now.

Her Rules of Engagement ensure she’ll make the right choice, and her committee will find her potential eternal companions. She assigns the job to her closest sister, Lisa, and Lisa’s husband, Tanner. Of course, Tanner comes with baggage— his brother, Ben, Annemarie’s lifelong nemesis.

The war between the two of them gives a brand new meaning to Annemarie’s Rules of Engagement, and his presence isn’t helping her at all. Especially when he disapproves of her methods and questions every step she makes. Especially when their forced proximity makes each of them really see each other for the first time. Especially when she discovers that her heart has secret corners she never knew, and that the Rules might have been her biggest mistake of all.

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Author Amber Gilchrist

Amber Gilchrist lives in New Mexico with her husband and three children. She writes YA for upper teens, as well as LDS Romantic Comedies. She calls her lifetime of jumping from one job to another ‘experience’ for her books and not an inability to settle down. Amber loves mysteries and a good, happy romance. She also loves to laugh. Sometimes she likes all of them together.
A fan of quirky movies and indie books, Amber likes to be with her family, is socially inept, and fears strangers and small yippy dogs. She alternates between writing and being a mom and wife. She tries to do both at the same time but her kids don’t appreciate being served lunch and told, “This is the hot dog of your discontent.” So mostly she writes when everyone else is in bed.

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Any other books in the works? Goals for future projects?

I also write under another pen name and under that name I have another mystery book due by March.? I am also working on a partnership with an Avon Publishing author for a contemporary romance series and planning on writing a story inside of a LDS anthology.? After that I will start writing the next book in the ABQ.LDS.YSA series.? I’ll give a free book to anyone who can make a correct guess about who the next book will star!

What was your favorite book when you were a child?

Harold & the Purple Crayon.? Loved that one.? I read it until it fell apart.

Is there a song you could list as the theme song for your book or any of your characters?

Yes.? Phillip Phillips “Gone, Gone, Gone”.

What’s one piece of advice you would give aspiring authors?

Just relax.? If it doesn’t work out right away, don’t freak.? Just keep doing what your doing.? You’ll get there eventually.? Also, no amount of writing books by S. King or classes at conferences will give you the amount of benefits you’ll get just from reading and writing all the time.? Just read and write.

What is your favorite Quote?

“It is easier to build strong children, than to repair broken men.” ~ Frederick Douglass

How do you react to a bad review?

I don’t.? People are entitled to their opinions.? I figure that you could have the best, juiciest, most wonderful peach in the world, and you’re going to find someone who hates peaches.? You can’t please everyone and I’m all good if people don’t enjoy my books.? Certainly, I hope they do.? But if they don’t it doesn’t ruffle my feathers.

You have won one million dollars what is the first thing that you would buy?

I would pay for my adoption.? We’re adopting two children with special needs from China.? It’s going to run us around 45K all together, and I’m BAD at fundraising.? A free million would be awesome!

How long do you generally let a story idea ‘marinate’ in your brain before you start the book?

It really depends on the book.? Sometimes I have just an inkling of an idea before I get to work, and some I have a general idea of plot and characters.? I’m not much of a planner so I definitely don’t have it all worked out no matter what.

Where do you write?
My house has a loft and my computer is in there.? I will give up my desktop when it gets pried from my cold, dead, hands.? So I can’t move around when I write.? Also my son is homeschooled and he doesn’t work if I’m not right next to him.? So I sit there and do it.

Which of your characters is a portrayal of you?

I think they all have elements of me.? But if you really want to try to pick me out in a book, I’d definitely look for the hero.? My heroes tend to be much more like me than my heroines.

What is your favorite scene in the book? Which scene or characters were the most difficult for you to write and why?

My favorite is the horse scene.? I wrote it and it was all good but then I went back and read it and cracked myself up.? The whole book was difficult.? It took me almost a year to write it.? I can usually write two or more books in a year.? I had two issues.? One was that I felt it was close in tone to Glitch and I wanted to put it later in the series where it would be farther away from Glitch, but I couldn’t concentrate on the book that was supposed to be next.? I kept coming back and writing a little here and a little there.? Finally, I just gave up and reordered the books.? Also, the second problem I had is that Annemarie has real emotional issues to overcome and I didn’t want to jump into changing their relationship from, basically, hatred, to romance in 8.2 seconds.? I know romances do it all the time, but I wanted more reality.? It took awhile to properly show the changes they go through.

What’s your favorite word?

Ubiquitous.? That one is everywhere ??

Do you write as you go or do you have the book all planned out from page 1?

Definitely write as I go.? Sometimes I know a little more than others, but really, I don’t plan.? One time I wrote a book where the hero was about to go in a door, and as I was writing the scene I still had literally no idea what was on the other side of the door.

How many books are in your TRB pile?
Literally thousands.? We have a library in our house and much of it is TBR.? Also my Kindle has, literally, something like 2500 books on it. So many that I’m running out of storage.

How do you overcome writer’s block?

I don’t believe in writer’s block.? If I don’t want to write than clearly this isn’t a good time for me to write, so I don’t.? I think writer’s block just means people aren’t in the right head space to write and should take a break.? Maybe for a couple hours, maybe for a couple of weeks.

How do you juggle writing & family life?

Mostly I write very late at night when everyone else is asleep.? It’s not unusually for me to still be up writing at?2AM.

Do your characters really talk to you?

Depends on the book.? But, yes, some definitely do.? Loudly and all the time haha.

About how long does it take to write a book?

On average, it takes me about four months.? Sometimes it take longer, like “Rules of Engagement.”? My non LDS urban fantasy novel took me TEN DAYS to write.? That’s all.? It was like a nightmare though.? I couldn’t stop writing.? I wouldn’t recommend that to anyone.

This or That
TV or Movies? TV if anything.? I’m too ADHD to watch most things, though.
Hot or Cold? Cold.
Black or White? Black.
Night owl, or early bird? Night owl
Print or Ebook? Depends on the book.
Chocolate or Vanilla? Chocolate.? No question.
Regular or Diet? Diet.
Coke or Pepsi? Barf.? Neither.? Dr. P
Horror or Romance? Romance
Action or Drama? Action
Pizza or Pasta? Pizza
Skittles or M&Ms? Skittles
Sweet or Salty? Depends on the day.? Overall, I’d say sweet.
Summer or Winter? Fall ??
City or Country? Country
Harry Potter or Twilight? Harry Potter
Gum or Breath Mints? Breath Mints
Spontaneity or Planning Ahead? Depends on what for.
PC or Mac? PC
Beach or Pool? I don’t like water.
Shoes or Sandals? Sandals
Cats or Dogs? Cats
Apples or Oranges? Both!
Cause or Effect? Cause AND effect!
Heads or Tails? Heads.
Facebook or Twitter? Facebook.? I don’t ‘get’ Twitter.
Truth or Dare? Truth.
Text or Talk? Text.
Introvert or Extrovert? Introvert.? Hard core.



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  1. Dinner and a movie (easy to please)

  2. Dinner with a man who knows how to converse with me.

  3. Thanks, Kathy!

  4. My ideal date is being somewhere where I am able to talk to him and get to know him.

  5. good food, good conversation, comedy (laughs) (or comedy club), and a gentleman all night and at the door, and maybe asks to kiss me!

  6. Going out to eat and to see a movie.
    Thanks for the chance to win!

  7. Going out to eat.

  8. It would have to be a movie, dinner & chat over coffee.

  9. I would have to say a nice dinner and then a walk somewhere to talk.