The disappearance of a local girl leads Special Agent Graham Grassi to the sexy redhead that has haunted him since they thwarted a hijacking. Questioning Mickey O’Shay cuts through him as he informs her about her missing goddaughter. Mickey’s determination has him ready to handcuff her—or kiss her—in place. As time runs out, the stakes run higher. They struggle to ignore their attraction as they unravel a web of deception.
He lifted his hand and tipped her chin up with his index finger. His eyes searched hers, as if waiting for some sort of signal or answer to an unasked question. Her pulse picked up and she moistened her lips, preparing for what she hoped was to come.
An Interview with Danielle M. Haas
Danielle M. Haas’s debut romantic suspense novel, BOUND BY DANGER, was published on January 29th, 2019 by Entangled.
Question: Please describe what the book is about.
Danielle M. Haas: Special Agent Graham Grassi is on a quest to stop a sex-trafficking ring from infiltrating Chicago. His path keeps crossing with sexy red head, Micky O’Shay. The stakes raise higher when Mickey’s goddaughter is taken, and her connections to the case leave Graham wondering if she’s just another victim in a sick game, or if she knows more than she’s letting on. Together, they race against time to unravel a web of deception before it’s too late.
Q: Where did you get the idea?
DMH: My initial idea sprung from wondering what would happen if a flight attendant had a blind date with a man she’d already met…a man she’d just told to stop trying to join the mile high club on a flight she worked. Then I realized this wasn’t very heroic behavior, and I had to figure out what situation could he possibly be in to take him from sleazy to dreamy. Of course, NONE of this made the final version, but it led me to a great story I never expected to tell.
Q: What’s the story behind the title?
DMH: The original title was GROUNDED BY DANGER, but the publisher thought BOUND BY DANGER sounded like more of a romance novel.
Q: No spoiler, but tell us something we won’t find out just by reading the book jacket.
DMH: Although Mickey and Graham are in a high-stakes emotional situation, they still have a lot of witty banter between them. Graham even serenades Mickey—with a horrible singing voice—to one of my favorite songs by Journey.
Q: Tell us about your favorite character.
DMH: I love Mickey! She’s sassy ad spunky and refused to be bossed around. She’s also strong and willing to do whatever it takes to find her goddaughter.
Q: If you could spend a day with one of your characters, who would it be and what would you do?
DMH: I’d go to Mexico with Mickey! Flight attendants do so much traveling and would know all the best spots to hit up!
Q: Are your character based on real people, or do they come from your imaginations?
DMH: The characters in this book are 100% from my imagination.
Q: How long did you take to write this book?
DMH: I started writing this book in August of 2017. I wrote the first draft in about three months, followed by a lot of revisions after my beta readers got a hold of it. I received a contract offer in April of 2018. It will be published on January 28, 2019.
Q: What kind of research did you do for this book?
DMH: I did a lot of research into sex-trafficking. It was horrific! But it opened my eyes to this dark world that exists everywhere and I now have a passion for advocating against. I even ran my first 5K in support of raising money to help victims of sex-trafficking.
Q: What did you remove from this book during the editing process?
DMH: I had a pretty intense car chase scene that my editor wanted removed. She said my characters needed a breather and wanted a “fun and games” scene to show them getting to know each other.
Q: Are you a plotter or a pantser?
DMH: I’m a pantster with a tiny bit of plotter thrown in.
Q: What is your favorite part of your writing process, and why?
DMH: My favorite part is when I get completely caught up in where the story is going and all of a sudden it takes a surprise turn that I wasn’t expecting! This is why I could never go full-blown plotter!
Q: What is the most challenging part of your writing process, and why?
DMH: The most challenging part is just finding the time to sit down and write, and not feel guilty about doing so. I’m a stay at home mom and my son isn’t in school yet. It’s hard to balance.
Q: Can you share your writing routine?
DMH: I normally write at my desk or at the island in my kitchen. I work better in the morning, so after I get my daughter on the school bus I give my son time to do his own thing (TV, Kindle, Puzzles, Play-dough) and I work on getting in my word count. My brain shuts off around 5:00 and it’s tough for me to get back into my writing at that point.
Q: Have you ever gotten writer’s block?
DMH: If yes, how do you overcome it? Yes! Several times with my last manuscript, which I wrote in the middle of the summer with two kids home and moving to a new house. I didn’t beat myself up (too badly) for taking a step away from my writing, and then I pushed myself to sit down and just write. NaNo helped with that a ton this year!
Q: If you could tell your younger writing self anything, what would it be?
DMH: Be patient and find your writing tribe! The people in this community are amazing, and their support and advice have been life-changing. I wish I would have known they were out there sooner.
Q: How many unpublished and half-finished books do you have?
DMH: I have three unpublished manuscripts that are all under contract. One will be out this year, the other two will follow shortly. I also have two unpublished/uncontracted manuscripts out on submission.
Q: Do you have any writing quirks?
DMH: I talk to myself a lot when I write. It’s hard for me to concentrate and I have to move, talk to my pets, or just talk to myself as I go along. I’m sure it’s pretty entertaining to watch.
Q: Tell us about yourself.
DMH: I am a stay at home mom with a three-year-old son and six-year-old daughter. I have a shar-pei/pit-bull who I absolutely adore and cat who is kind of shithead…but I love anyway. I live in NE Ohio with my family, and have a completely useless degree in Political Science.
Q: How did you get into writing?
DMH: I’ve always loved writing. When my son was 6 months old, I thought I was going to go stir crazy with only focusing on my children and husband. I decided to sit down and try to write a book based off my hometown and I fell in love with writing! That book, a small-town contemporary romance, will be published later this year!
Q: What do you like to do when you’re not writing?
DMH: Spend time with family, and if I’m lucky, that means traveling to some place fantastic!
Q: Apart from novel writing, do you do any other kind(s) of writing?
DMH: I have blog that I enjoy working on.
Q: Share something about you most people probably don’t know.
DMH: I changed my major in college seven times! I started in creative writing, but the idea of having to read my work in front of other people scared me so bad I just keep changing majors and looking for something else I’d love to do.
Q: Which book influenced you the most?
DMH: I can’t name just one. I love reading romance and have devoured romance books for years!
Q: What are you working on right now?
DMH: I just finished another romantic suspense, which is book two of a three book series. Each book focuses on a crime where a dating app is used by the villain/and or suspects in the novels.
Q: What’s your favorite writing advice? Keep writing, keep learning, and have an open mind.
DMH: After I finished my first manuscript, I thought it was the best thing ever…until my paths crossed with my now critique partner who pointed out everything I did wrong! Instead of being defensive and offended, I listened to her wonderful advice and used it to improve my writing. I still do this daily!
Q: The book you’re currently reading?
DMH: APPETITES AND VICES by Felicia Grossman.
Danielle M. Haas’s Biography
Danielle grew up with a love of reading, partly due to her namesake—Danielle Steele. It seemed as though she was born to write out the same love stories she devoured while growing up.
She attended Bowling Green State University with a dream of studying creative writing, but the thought of sharing her work in front of a group of strangers was enough to make her change her major to Political Science.
After college she moved across the state of Ohio with her soon-to-be husband. Once they married and had babies, she decided to stay home and raise her children. Some days her sanity slipped further across the line to crazy town so she decided to brush off her rusty writing chops and see what happened.
Danielle now spends her days running kids around, playing with her beloved dog, and typing as fast as she can to get the stories in her head written down. She loves to write contemporary romance with relatable characters that make her readers’ hearts happy, as well as fast-paced romantic suspense that leaves them on the edge of their seats. Her story ideas are as varied and unpredictable as her everyday life.
Links to Danielle M. Haas