Monday, July 30, 2012




Hello! My name is Taryn Elliott and I’m the brainchild behind ASHES AND WINE. And I say brainchild, because my characters tend to take over no matter how thoroughly I try to plot and plan. I wouldn’t call it a muse. No, my writing can’t be boiled down to that. I work my butt off even when I’m not in the mood to deal with writing. But then…I hit that sweet spot when I’m in the heart of a story and all sorts of things happen—sometimes not exactly as I expect them to go.

“Just be lucky that Simon hasn’t spoken up. Yet.”
HUSH, Royal.
“Just sayin’.”
I asked you here to help me, not make threats.
“It’s not my fault that he’s going to infect your brain and make you tell his story someday.”
Not today.
“Nah. Not today. I know Mercy’s poking around in there already.”
This whole teasing side of your personality. When did I let that come out?
“The minute Tessa showed up and fought for me like a little tigress. Besides, it’s always been there. It was just under—you know, some stuff.”
*sigh* Yes, I know. I’m sorry about that. I didn’t ask you to help me out with this interview to bring up all those hurts.
“I know. I’m okay. Tessa helps me be okay with it. It’s easier to remember all the good stuff about my Pops when she’s smiling up at me with that gorgeous smile of hers. And when she comes into the vines and makes me take a break. It’s harvest time, so I forget to do that sometimes.”
Good. I’m glad. And speaking of the vines, why don’t you tell the lovely readers here at Great Minds a little bit about the winery?
“It started off as a little winery with just twenty acres about sixty years ago. My great granddad—my name sake, Royal Andreas—came over here from Greece with a few seedlings from a little town named Attica. But he learned that the soil here is much different from his homeland. So we’ve diversified into a lot of different styles over the years. I run the winery now that my Pops has passed away. With the help of my brothers, Simon and Colter—they’re twins, God save me—along with Rafe, Garrett and Eli, we manage forty acres of land now. We’ve managed to keep one really special grape alive no matter how many changes and setbacks we’ve had. The Savatiano. It makes a sweet white wine—at least the way we ferment it. It’s got a crisp pear flavor to it. Huh. It’s no wonder I fell in love with Tessa.”
Oh really, why’s that?
“She smells like pears. Right behind her ear—that’s the sweet spot. I love to nuzzle her right there and drink in the scent of her.”
Well, then. Lucky freaking girl.
“Nah, I’m the lucky one. She puts up with me.”
Ahem. Why don’t we get back to the interview?
“Sure. I’m all yours, love.”
Yeesh. I’m not used to all this charm. I don’t miss the surly, silent Royal, but man, you are potent.
“The love of a good woman will do that.”
I think I threw up in my mouth a little bit.
“You write romance for f—um, for God’s sake.”
Yeah, I do, but you’re so happy it’s sickening.
“Now you sound just like Rafe. He’s threatening to disown me because we can’t keep our hands off each other. I say you knock him on his ass. I think I’d like to see Rafe fall for a woman that will keep him in line. I shouldn’t be the only one that finds my happily ever after.”
I’ll keep that in mind. *writes down in notebook* That’s actually a good idea.
“I have them once in a while.”
Right. *scribbles a few more lines* Right, sorry. I got off track. See what happens when these guys are around? I lose all my focus. Stop laughing over there, buddy.
“I said nothing.”
I knew I should have asked Tessa to do this. She’s much more cooperative.
“What’d I do? Man, I’m always in trouble.”
Don’t pout it’s not manly.
“Think we can wrap this up? I don’t really like to talk about myself. You should probably have Tessa do this stuff. She likes to talk about books and shit. I have ten acres of Sav to get into the stomping vats by sunset.”
Right, I’m sorry.
“Don’t be sorry. Just do your thing, writer girl.”
All right, last question. How are things going now that you and Tessa are living in two different cities and are in a relationship?
“I wish they had a frequent gas buying card like they do for flights. My truck is getting a work out. But other than that, we’re doing just great. Marissa, Tessa’s assistant store manager, and her brother, Blake are stepping up. And miracle of miracles, my little control freak is letting them. She works at the store four days a week and I get her the rest. As soon as Harvest is over I’ll go into the city more. We’ll make it work because we don’t have a choice to do anything else. I’d never ask her to give up her store and she knows what the winery means to me. Besides, the woman is already taking over the Andreas Winery storefront and causing havoc with Garrett and Eli. She’s worse than my mother when it comes to organization and efficiency. She’s menace.”
And you love her madly.
“I love her more every single day. Now, I just have to figure out a good way to propose. Then everything will be perfect. Mercy already told me she’s going to help out with that.”
Oh really? This is news to me.
“I told you Mercy would be buzzing in your ear soon enough. Tessa’s best friend needs to deal with that hotel mogul guy. The one with the prissy name.”
“Right, Van Horny.”
Van Horne. Alaric would crush your head like a peanut if he knew you guys called him Van Horny behind his back.
“I’d like to see him try.”
Oh, for the love of testosterone, relax. I think I’m done with you. The readers are going to think I’m nuts.
“You’re the one writing the words, love.”
Go. You’re a menace. Oh and Royal?
I’m glad you and Tessa are happy. You had to go through enough crap to get there.
“Every word was worth it, writer girl.”

Well, I hope you didn’t mind my rambles. Royal was a heck of a lot chattier than I thought he’d be. I guess the love of a good woman really did plunk him into his happy space. I hope you’ll consider giving Royal and Tessa a read. Thanks so much for allowing us to come on your site. We had a great time.


Taryn's Site:
Entangled Publishing:


  1. *snicker* that was totally awesome and exactly how I pictured it would be from reading your fabulous book. :)

    Awesomely done and I laughed outloud more than once.

    I can't wait for more of your male heroes. You have a gift for the male brain for sure :)

    1. LOL Thanks for stopping by, Kiwi. =) This is what happens when I write stuff at 2am. LOL

  2. That was hilarious! Thanks, Taryn (and Royal)!

    It really is an excellent book (and it's in my re-read pile - read it two-and-a-half times now...) Anyone who hasn't read it yet, what are you waiting for?

    1. *MWAAAH!*

      LOL Thanks, babes. You're one of my biggest advocates. I can't wait to do the same for you.

  3. You are just simply too much my friend. :)
    Loved this little look in on Royal. Like Kiwi said, awesomely done.
    Loved the book. It's on my Kindle forever!!

    1. Aww. Nice to see ya, Queenie. I'm glad you stopped by. ;) I'm so glad you liked the book. *BIGGRIN*

  4. LOL, loved the post! Such a great book and I can't wait to see what Taryn comes up with next. :)

  5. What a fabulous post Royal, um, I mean Taryn. Thanks for making me laugh :-)