Welcome to Author Hope Ramsay!
Hope Ramsay was born in New York and grew up on the North Shore of Long Island, but every summer Momma would pack her off under the care of Aunt Annie to go visiting with relatives in the midlands of South Carolina. Her extended family includes its share of colorful aunts and uncles, as well as cousins by the dozens, who provide the fodder for the characters you’ll find in Last Chance, South Carolina. Hope earned a BA in Political Science from the University of Buffalo, and has had various jobs working as a Congressional aide, a lobbyist, a public relations consultant, and a meeting planner. She’s a two-time finalist in the Golden Heart, and is married to a good ol’ Georgia boy who resembles every single one of her heroes. She has two grown children and a couple of demanding lap cats. She lives in Fairfax, Virginia where you can often find her on the back deck, picking on her thirty-five-year-old Martin guitar.
What is your favorite flavor of ice cream?
Coffee. And if you’re looking for to die for coffee ice cream, you must make a pilgrimage to the Lakeside Creamery in Deep Creek Lake, Maryland. There is no finer ice cream on the face of the planet.
Skittles or M&Ms?
M&Ms, definitely. I eat them one at a time. I know, it’s very OCD, but then I can make a small bag of M&Ms last for an entire movie. My waistline definitely appreciates this skill.
What inspired you to want to become a writer?
I was in second grade and had to write a story about the Pilgrims. I have a clear memory of my fat hand holding one of those big red pencils as I wrote out my story about the arduous journey of our intrepid forefathers and mothers. I had so much fun writing about all their trials and troubles. When the paper was done, I looked up at my mother and told her that I was going to be a writer when I grew up. I still love handing trials and tribulations to my characters, and I still have fat little hands.
What is your favorite Quote?
Ralph Waldo Emerson: “A foolish consistency is the hobgoblin of little minds.” This is the best catchall quote for any woman who wants to change her mind.
What do you do in your free time?
I love to knit. I play guitar. My husband and I often get away from it all in our pop-up camper. I’m a complete baseball fanatic. (My heart belongs to the Washington Nationals.)
As noted above, I’ve played guitar for decades and I’m a pretty good fingerpicker. I love contemporary folk music. My favorite singer-songwriters: David Wilcox, James Taylor, Peter Mayer, and Joni Mitchell.
Who are your favorite authors of all time?
This is a really hard topic, because there are so many genres, and I read voraciously and widely. But if I had to pick the top five over a variety of genres they would be (in alphabetical order):
Is there a song you could list as the theme song for your book or any of your characters?
Oh yes, definitely. Since I’m a frustrated musician, I can’t even begin to write a novel without a long playlist of songs. For Welcome to Last Chance, the theme song would definitely have to be God Bless the Broken Road by Rascal Flatts. The very first time I heard that song on the radio I knew I had to write a story to go with it. I love the idea that Jane and Clay, the heroine and hero of Welcome to Last Chance, are people who have made a lot of mistakes in their past. But each of them discovers that their mistakes have made them stronger. Without those past mistakes, they would never have been ready to find love with each other.
Write a Haiku about your book
The glass is half full.
But Clay thinks it’s half empty.
Jane opens his eyes.
Any other books in the works? Goals for future projects?
Welcome to Last Chance by Hope Ramsay:
Yes, our town is way off the beaten path but strange, wonderful miracles happen a lot around here.
I’ve owned the Cut ‘n Curl beauty shop for years, and I’ve seen folks come for a visit then stay for a lifetime. Take Jane—that pretty firecracker of a girl who just arrived in town. I would swear she’s running from something. She came with only five dollars in her pocket but she’s worked real hard to make a fresh start. She’s turned my son Clay’s life upside down without even realizing it.
And thank goodness for that! Every since Clay left his country western band, he’s played everything too safe. He needs to take a chance on Jane. Besides, the more he tries to keep his distance, the more he’ll realize that he and Jane are singing the same tune.
But I should quit ramblin’ and go check on Millie’s permanent wave. Next time you’re in Last Chance, be sure to swing by…we’ve got hot rollers, free coffee, and the best gossip in town.
See you soon,
2 copies of Welcome to Last Chance
Open to US & Canada (no PO boxes)
I’m currently working on a book called Home at Last Chance, which is the story of Clay’s younger brother, Tulane. It’s a wonderfully funny story about a bad boy stock car driver whose sponsor — Cottontail Disposable Diapers — has painted his racecar pink and put a snuggle bunny on the hood. That’s bad enough, but when Sarah, the prim little Bostonian the sponsor sends to keep Tulane in line, begins to bond with Tulane’s mother and the rest of the church ladies in Last Chance it’s more than merely humiliating. It’s down right annoying. Bad boy Tulane and good girl Sarah have been a lot of fun to write.