Author Interview (and a Giveaway!): Julianna Deering

Posted May 12, 2016 by meezcarrie in Author Interview, Christian, giveaway, historical, Julianna Deering, mystery/suspense / 96 Comments


julianna deering author interview

Guys! Guys!

I get to chat with the super cool Julianna Deering today! We started talking through the blog a while back – she blames me for her ever-growing TBR list.  Pffft. What’s up with that? lol. Well…. it works both ways. Since “meeting” her, I’ve added the entire Drew Farthering series to my TBR island (and wondered HOW I haven’t read them before now?!?), not to mention the medieval series she wrote! (And then – in this interview – I found out she has contemporary mysteries too! So on to the island go they!) 😉

DodsonCJULIANNA DEERING has always been an avid reader and a lover of storytelling, whether on the page, the screen or the stage. This, along with her keen interest in history and her Christian faith, shows in her tales of love, forgiveness and triumph over adversity. A fifth-generation Texan, she makes her home north of Dallas with three spoiled cats and, when not writing, spends her free time quilting, cross stitching and watching NHL hockey. Her new series of Drew Farthering mysteries set in 1930s England debuted from Bethany House with Rules of Murder (2013) and is followed by Death by the Book and Murder at the Mikado (2014), Dressed for Death (2016) and Murder on the Moor (Coming 2017). Also, as DeAnna Julie Dodson, she has written a trilogy of medieval romances (In Honor Bound, By Love Redeemed and To Grace Surrendered) and six contemporary mysteries for Annie’s Fiction. She is represented by Wendy Lawton of the Books & Such Literary Agency (

You can connect with Julianna Deering on her website, Facebook, and Twitter.

Alrighty, Ms. Julianna – let’s start you out with the usual “fast four”!

apples or oranges

Julianna: Wow, that’s a tough one since I love them both. I guess I’d have to give oranges the edge just because they’re so deliciously juicy.

CarrieSome (me) might say they’re TOO juicy… but that’s okay 🙂

winter or summer

Julianna: Oh, winter. Winter, winter, winter, winter, winter, winter! Even though I’ve lived here in Texas all my life, I still find the summers unbearably hot. Expensive electric bills. Expensive water bills. Expensive lawn care bills. Painful heat. Bugs. Sweat. Dirt. Total pleh. Now the winters here are generally short and mild. We might have an ice storm every two or three years, but those last only a few days, if that. Christmas and New Year are often shirt-sleeve weather. If we do have snow (and that’s more rare than ice) it’s wonderful. I don’t know if I’d feel that way about it if it was around for five or six months every year. Winter. Definitely.

Carrie: Makes a note to never visit Texas during the summer.

dogs or cats

Carrie: As always, Zuzu wishes for me to issue the disclaimer that your answer could affect your further participation in this or any other interviews on the blog. (Not really… I don’t think.)

Julianna: Awww, dear Zuzu! Do assure her that I love dogs with all my heart. When I was growing up, we had all kinds of pets: multiple dogs and cats, gerbils, hamsters, birds, fish, turtles, rabbits, almost everything. I loved and enjoyed them all. But from the time I left home, I’ve had only cats. They’re so self-sufficient and easy to take care of. And, despite what some people think, they are extremely affectionate. I couldn’t do without them.

Carrie: After conferring with Her Highness (otherwise known as Zuzu), she has decided you may proceed. Despite the dreaded c-a-t answer 😉   


coffee or tea

Julianna: Depends on the weather most of the time. In the winter, I drink coffee. In the summer, I drink iced tea. No lemon, no sugar, thank you, but lots and lots of ice.

ice-tea-600x398Carrie: Since it’s almost summer, here’s a lovely glass of ice cold tea – no lemon, no sugar – for you to sip at your leisure as we settle in for the longer-questions portion of our chat! I’ve got my diet coke, extra ice, from McDonalds – also no lemon or sugar 🙂 – so I’m good to go too. 

Around here I like to say that reading is my superpower.  If YOU had a superpower, what would it be?

Julianna: The one I would most like to have is the ability to do without sleep. I could get so much done every day! Then maybe I wouldn’t be so far behind on my writing schedule.

Carrie: That superpower would come in handy for blogging as well! And reading… Maybe I’d actually catch up on my TBR island. 

Writing is a superpower all unto itself. Do you have any writing process quirks? Any favorite snacks or beverages to get the words flowing?

Julianna: I usually don’t write in chronological order. Most of the time I write the big set pieces I know I want to have in the story, and then I go back and write the connecting scenes. Once in a while I’ll start at the beginning and write to the end, but not usually. My favorite snack is bite-size Milky Way dark. Not the big bars and not the milk chocolate ones. Only the tiny dark ones. Mmmmm.

Carrie: Alright now.  I was ok with the oranges (sort-of) and the cats (to each her own) but DARK chocolate? Yuck. I do love Milky Ways and happen to also prefer the bite-size bars but it HAS to be the milk chocolate. Mmmmm. 

If we peeked inside your purse right now, what would it tell us about you?

Julianna: It would tell you that I’m a quilter (lots of quilt shop “frequent buyer” cards and notes on patterns and designers) and a cross-stitcher (a list of hand-dyed threads I want to get). It would tell you I’m a reader (lists of books I need to get to complete or start series and to make sure I don’t accidentally buy the same book more than once). It would tell you I’m a Dallas Stars hockey fan (I keep a schedule in my purse at all times). It would tell you I definitely need a new checkbook cover.

Carrie: LOL! I love quilts and have always wanted to learn but as learning to sew was a disaster, as was knitting, I feel that I probably shouldn’t torture the beautiful fabrics that way. I do cross stitch, however! Well… I used to before I started the blog.  Now, all I do is read haha! 

You’ve written 4 books now in the Drew Farthering series, so you and Drew have undoubtedly spent a lot of time together.  This question is in two parts:

dressed for deatha) Describe the yummy Drew in one sentence.

Julianna: You mean besides “yummy”? Okay, I’d say he was a loyal (if sometimes snarky) friend, a devoted husband, a seeker of justice and of God, an avid reader, and (though he’ll stoutly deny it) a closet romantic. Oh, and yummy. Did I say yummy? I guess that’s more than one sentence.

Carrie: Yes… but… he IS yummy so I’ll allow it 🙂 

b) If I asked DREW to describe YOU in one sentence, what would he say? 

Julianna: “She’s stark staring mad.”

Carrie: LOL! Well… it’s probably because you like the dark Milky Ways.

You previously wrote medieval romance (under the name DeAnna Julie Dodson). Now you write 1930s era mysteries. But Dressed For Death also has a Regency element to it.  What other historical eras/genres have you considered writing?

Julianna: I’ve written five contemporary and one contemporary/historical (French Revolution) cozy mysteries for Annie’s Fiction. I’ve written a Civil War novel that’s still unpublished. I absolutely adore Georgette Heyer’s Regencies (especially as read by Richard Armitage — be still my heart!) and would love to try my hand at that era someday. I’d love to write some Gothic romance, the Jane Eyre or Wuthering Heights (but with more likeable characters) sort of thing. I want to write more medieval romance as well as some western and/or prairie sort of tales. I want to write about the World Wars and the Revolutionary War. Just about anything from medieval times to WWII interests me. Oh, and I want to write fantasy, too. I have a bit of a start of one, though I never seem to have time for it. I want to write everything!

Carrie: I tried a Georgette Heyer book once (Cotillion, I think?) and couldn’t get into it.  Perhaps I should listen to the Richard Armitage version! Oh – and could I go ahead and order that Civil War novel, the Gothic romance, the more medieval romances, the western/prairie tales, the ones about the World Wars, the Revolutionary War SERIES…… and yeah, even the fantasy. Thanks!

I love, love, LOVE how each of the Drew Farthering books has a literary inspiration.  What is the inspiration for this latest novel, Dressed for Death?

Julianna: Dressed for Death is my Jane Austen book. The story opens with Drew and Madeline attending a Regency house party where they are required to dress, eat and play as if it were still the early eighteen hundreds. Drew particularly objects to the dancing and the inability to drive his beloved Rolls, but all in all he’s pleased to take part as a treat for Madeline for their six-month anniversary.

Carrie: Drew in Regency? Yes please. And thank you. <3 

I seriously adore chatting with you. 🙂 Before we say goodbye for today, tell us what‘s coming up next for you. (I think I heard a rumor about a gardener who resembles Aiden Turner???)

Julianna: Ooooh, I am SO excited about Book Five in this series, Murder on the Moor. Drew and Madeline go up to Yorkshire to help an old school friend of his figure out who’s behind the strange happenings out on the moor and why the local vicar was murdered on the steps of the church. The delicious Aidan Turner (especially his Poldark incarnation) was definitely the inspiration for my gamekeeper, Rhys Delwyn, even though Delwyn is Welsh and not Irish. Drew isn’t at all sure what he’s up to or whether or not it involves his friend’s posh wife. Stay tuned.

Sign up for Drew’s News (Julianna’s newsletter) for an exclusive look at the cover of the upcoming Murder on the Moor

giveaway RIMSP

One of my readers will win a paperback copy of any one of the Drew Farthering Mysteries – your choice of #1-4!

Thanks, Julianna!! 😀

(Can I just state for the record that I’m wishing I could enter too? lol)

(US Mailing Addresses only please)

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Ok – now it’s your turn! Comment on this post and a) weigh in on the Milky Way discussion or b) tell Julianna which Drew Farthering Mystery is your fave so far or c) just tell her how super cool she is!

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96 responses to “Author Interview (and a Giveaway!): Julianna Deering

  1. emilee douglas

    I enjoyed the interview and would love to win one of Julianna’s books. I haven’t read one of her books yet. Which one should I start with?

    • Yes, do start with Rules of Murder. There is a complete mystery in each book (I would never leave something like that hanging from book to book!), but you’ll get a lot more out of the stories if you start at the beginning where Drew and Madeline first meet and solve their first mystery. 😀

  2. I love your blog Carrie! Just saying! And I have always LOVED the covers on Julianna’s books! Especially when I hear they are Austin inspired in some cases!

    And Zuzu is adorable too!

    Thanks for this interview you guys! I love getting to know “new to me” authors.

    Hi Julianna!

    • Hi, Melony!

      Aren’t the covers greatness? Bethany House perfectly captured the art deco feel of the 1930s. I thought Mikado was especially great. Of course Drew in a tux? How could anyone resist? 😀

  3. Great interview and what’s wrong with tiny dark milky way?! BTW, they are hard to find here in MD! There are specific stores to go to for them. I need to enter this and add to my drew collection. Haven’t read them yet, but all of them are on my TBR list. Hehe. Julianna, loving the covers and your snack choices! *wink wink

  4. Rebecca F

    I have to say since Julianna lives in Texas, that right there makes her super cool! But her books look amazing too. I haven’t read any of them yet, but they are on my “to read” list. After reading this interview though, I am really excited about reading them! I’m not a fan of Milky Way’s, but I do love dark chocolate so guess I’m split on this one.

    • Carrie

      Haha Rebecca! Very diplomatic answer on the great MW debate 🙂 Thanks for commenting – I’m so glad the interview has piqued your interest even more!

  5. I really don’t care for chocolate *gasp* it is true! I prefer srarburts or skittles any day (but Carrie, you can still have my strawberry ones). And I have been wanting to read these books forever I feel! Thanks for a giveaway! 😀

    • :::eyes Rachel with suspicion::: I do agree about the Starbursts and Skittles though. But how anyone could relinquish even one strawberry Starburst, I just don’t know.

      I hope you enjoy the books! 😀

  6. I loved to read mysteries growing up and this is an adult version which only gets better with age! So can’t wait to see what mystery unfolds!

  7. Hi Carrie – I’m excited to learn about this new-to-me author! Thanks for sharing, and I have added her new book to my CBD wish list. Do you feel I need to go back and start at the beginning of the series, or are these stand alone books?
    Would love to win one.
    Thank you,
    Heather Elizabeth.

  8. Valerie S.

    I so enjoyed this conversation with Julianna! I didn’t realize she also wrote as DeAnna Julie Dodson. I have to agree with Carrie on the preference for milk chocolate. I know dark chocolate may have a health benefit, but I vastly prefer mild chocolate. :o)

  9. I just got the first two books in the Drew Farthering mysteries so I’m looking forward to reading them. I don’t like Milky Ways because of the nougat, which I only like in small doses so the even though I like some dark chocolate, I wouldn’t eat them. 🙁 But I completely get wanting to eat the bite sized ones for snacks rather than the big ones. Thanks for the interview and the giveaway!

    • Carrie

      yes, I’m on board with the bite size ones. But the milk chocolate. Always the milk chocolate 😉 Thanks, Loraine!!

    • I hope you enjoy the books, Loraine. 😀

      I like the bits-sized candies because I can use them as tiny motivators in my writing. I get one for every so many words done.

      Plus I like to freeze them. Delicious and a bit longer lasting.

  10. Ellen Gray

    I have only had the opportunity to read the first Drew mystery and really liked it! Thanks for the opportunity to win.

  11. Winnie Thomas

    Seriously awesome interview! Carrie, you amuse me endlessly! And Julianna, I have heard wonderful things about your books, but alas, I haven’t had the honor of reading any of them yet. They are going on my TBR list, which is rivaling or surpassing Carrie’s–I might have to build on a separate room or get a designated laptop to keep track of all the books I have and NEED to read! I really hope I win a copy, so I can get started reading this series! Oh, and as to the great Milky Way controversy–I’m sorry, but I prefer Snickers! However, I’m with Carrie on the milk chocolate. I will eat dark chocolate (or really most any type of chocolate, unfortunately), but if there’s a choice, I prefer the milk chocolate. High five, Carrie! 🙂

  12. Thanks for letting me and Drew visit, Carrie!

    And let me clarify that though bite-size Midnight Milky Way Dark is my favorite, I never say no to milk chocolate either. Not at all a fan of white chocolate, but that wasn’t really the question. I LOVE Skittles and Starbursts (especially the strawberry ones!) too. 😀

    • Carrie

      heehee YAY! Strawberry are my faves. Okay, I’m at peace with the dark MW thing now. 🙂

      • I forgot to say that, HUGE YES, you should listen to Richard Armitage read Heyer. Have mercy! There are only three of them (though I still hold out hope that he’ll read more someday). Sylvester is my favorite and then The Convenient Marriage is a close second.

        I couldn’t get into Heyer’s mysteries (and I tried the first one twice!), but her Regencies are always a hoot.

  13. Marilyn

    I do like any chocolate,so a dark chocolate Milky Way is fine by me! Thanks for the giveaway.

  14. carylkane

    Hello Julianna. I am swooning over Mr. Fathering….;) I love your vintage covers. Thank you for the giveaway! 🙂

  15. Pam K.

    I read the first three Drew Farthering books and liked them all. I can’t pick a favorite! I love dark and milk chocolate so either of those work for me.

  16. Great interview, really enjoyed reading about you. I’m with you about having cats, I love dogs too, but cats are just as affectionate and they really do take care of themselves. I haven’t read any of the Drew books, but they sound amazing.

    • I’m so glad you liked the interview, Dianne. I had so much fun doing it. Carrie asks great questions, doesn’t she?

      Just so you know, there are cats in all of my books. And for Carrie, dogs feature prominently in Book Five (as well as an Aidan Turner look alike). Hee hee.

  17. Such a funny and amazing interview! I adore milky way chocolate but I shouldn’t have them much due to my diabetes so I have been studying ways to incorporate healthier choices with dark chocolate. Love Julianna Deering! I would have to say the second book is my favorite so far.

  18. Rebecca Maney

    Fantastic interview! Now I REALLY want to start reading these books. . . . . and please note that I am an almost exclusively DARK chocolate eater!

  19. Trixi

    Okay, first off, I’m not a huge chocolate fan. Does that disqualify me or kick me off the island??? Yikes, I hope not! Now peanut butter, I’m crazy for that (think Reeses)…see that has a bit of chocolate in it 🙂
    As for the Drew Farthering mysteries, first I’ve heard of them when I saw “Dressed For Death” release. Sounds like I’ve missed some good books, well I’m adding them to my want-to-read list as we speak! Thanks for the giveaway chance, it will be my first one if I win 🙂 You mentioned Gothic mystery…well do I have an author to recommend!! Sandra Byrd does an awesome job with her Daughters of Hampshire series. The first one is “Mist of Midnight” followed by “Bride of a Distant Isle”. They were my first ever Gothic reads and nothing like I imagined something from that genre to be. They are SO good without bein dark & creepy like I thought Gothic was. There’s plenty of mystery & secrects though! I highly recommend them if you haven’t read them.
    Thirdly, Julianna you ARE super cool!! 🙂 I enjoyed your fun interview! I got to meet a new-to-me author, yay! Blessings!

    • Carrie

      Yaaay!!! Trixi, you are the only one to take me up on all 3 of those commenting options lol! I have both of Sandra’s books & just need to find TIME to read them haha!

    • You definitely get to stay, Trixi. And Reeses are greatness. I love Reeses Pieces (and they’re not even made out of Rhesus Monkeys — who knew?).

      Oooh, I will definitely check out Sandra Byrd. Thank you!

      Me? I’M cool? I knew I liked this place. 😉

  20. Brittaney B

    So far, I’ve only read the first Drew Farthering mystery, but I liked it so well that I immediately added the rest of them to my TBR pile.

    • Oh, thank you, Brittaney! I hope you like them all.

      And I hope you (and everyone) will sign up for Drew’s News. That way I know you’ll get all the announcements (even though they are few and far between) and special offers and all that good stuff.


  21. G’day from Australia!
    Loved the interview and being introduced to a new-to-me author (hi, DeAnna!). I’ve been a fan of Agatha Christie for years, and as a Regency author I LOVE my Georgette Heyer (& the audiobooks read by Richard Armitage – swoon!), so look forward to reading to reading the first Farthering novel, which I just ordered due to this interview 🙂 (Love NHL too – even all the way from over here – tough stuff!)

    • Carrie

      YAY! Thanks, Carolyn – so glad you enjoyed the interview. That makes me so happy 🙂

  22. G’day, Carolyn! So cool to hear from someone down under!

    Isn’t Richard Armitage a FABULOUS reader? I wish I could hire him to read my books. Or at least I wish he’d read all my favorite books. I would SO buy those!

    I hope you enjoy Drew. He owes much to Christie and Sayers and Allingham, but he insists on having his own way, too.

    How cool is it that you like hockey!! I had no idea anyone down there watched it. Are you watching the playoffs? My beloved Stars lost in seven in Round Two, but they didn’t do too badly for a team no one thought would even make the playoffs. 😀

    I hope you’ll let me know what you think of the book. And do sign up for my newsletter. It’s got all the best news.

    • Yes! I’m listening to Richard reading ‘Sylvester’ at the moment (well, not right at this precise moment because I’m watching Eurovision!) – love him! So talented. Bring on an Austen (or better yet a Heyer!) adaptation with him in the lead.
      And no, not really following the playoffs this year, seeing as my team (Canucks) went out so early 🙁 But the Stars have done well in recent years – esp. in a non-traditional hockey market!
      Yes, will sign up for the newsletter. Looking forward to getting to know Drew!

      • Ah, Sylvester is my favorite. 😀

        Ooooh, wouldn’t he be great as Sylvester or especially Lord Rule? :::dreamy sigh:::

        I watch all the games, no matter who’s in, especially since there will be no more when that’s done until (gasp!) October.

        I hope you enjoy the books. There’s a nod to Sylvester in Book Five (coming this spring). Hee hee.

    • No, it’ a necessity.

      Sugary drinks don’t quench my thirst. If I actually need to cool off (which I often do in Texas), then ice water or iced tea is the only choice. Sugar drinks are recreational.

      Plus drinking sweet tea sets my teeth on edge.

      Pleh. 😉

      • Trixi

        DeAnna, I’m with you on the sugary drinks! You know that soda actually makes you thirstier (not good for you in the first place)? I gave up that stuff years ago. I drink iced tea all day long, and used to use sweetener in it. Then I learned how bad that stuff is for you, I discovered Stevia and used that for a while. I just started using less and less, now I use no sugar at all. Like you, sweet tea sets my teeth on edge…Pleh!

        See, I told you you are cool! 😉

  23. Katie R

    I love that her Christian faith shows through in her stories. I also love that she has always loved story-telling and has followed her heart!

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