Monday 8 January 2024

Blog Tour Interview - Sunny's Secrets by Robin Jay

Devastated by the loss of her husband and keenly aware of the fragile nature of life, Sunny, a nurse, is approached by a mysterious Indian doctor with a secretive spiritual method for transferring Life Force Energy between two people. She accepts his intriguing offer to join his elite and clandestine team.

Sunny's Secrets
Author: Robin Jay
Publication Date: July 6, 2023
Pages: 378
Genre: Psychological Suspense/Medical

Book Description:
A suicide bomber changed Sunny’s life forever. A nurse from a military family, she finds herself devastated and alone. At her husband’s funeral, she’s approached by a mysterious Indian doctor, Rohan Ray, who shows her how to switch Life Force Energy between two people – those who are about to end their lives and patients who would give anything to live another day. Playing with fate is not for the faint of heart. Will the crushing responsibility be too much for Sunny to bear?

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Author Interview

Where do you get inspiration for your stories?  

I was divinely inspired to write Sunny’s Secrets. There are many circumstances, but it’s always a tragedy when someone throws away their life. I kept thinking about the contrast between their situation and someone who would give anything to live another day, as in the case of a terminally ill child. I thought it would make a compelling story to see the difference between someone who has given up and someone who gets a second shot at life. I thought about the “Life Force Energy” that people take with them when they end their lives and wondered what would happen if you could capture that and instill it into someone else whose energy was fading.

Where is your book set and have you ever been there?  

It’s set in Columbus, Ohio and later in Dayton. I’m originally from Cleveland, Ohio, and I’ve been to Columbus and Dayton, but I haven’t been back in decades. I know about the seasons, the general terrain, and the fact that Wright-Patterson Air Force Base is near Dayton, which would work perfectly for my story, so it seemed like the perfect Midwest location for Sunny to come from Dublin, just outside of Columbus. Still, I did a lot of research to make sure I got the details correct. And, when Sunny and Dr. Rohan Ray flew to India, I was grateful for the Internet! I can’t imagine trying to map out their travel using reference books in a library. I’ve never been to India. I created the fictional Shuddh Aatma Monastery after doing a lot of research about monasteries and eastern India, including the weather there. The rest was just my creative imagination. It became so real to me, that I feel as if I’ve actually been there.

What is your next project? 

I’d like to write a sequel to “Sunny’s Secrets,” but first I’d like to create an empowering anthology based on Napoleon Hill’s classic “Think and Grow Rich,” that will feature wisdom from some of the top thought leaders of the past century. I think that many people are struggling today and I’d like to empower them by sharing the keys to success that have been proven through the ages. But that sequel is calling my name!

What genre do you write and why?  

I resigned from my advertising sales career in 2003 with the intention of writing fiction. I got sidetracked by the old saying, “Write what you know about.” I was called “The Queen of the Business Lunch” because my business involved socializing with clients, and I was very good at it. I even trademarked that title for a few years. My first book was “The Art of the Business Lunch, Building Relationships Between 12 and 2” (Career Press.) It was non-fiction/business/sales. It’s in twelve languages and has been successful. I launched my speaking career to promote that book and help business professionals discover how to succeed by socializing with their clients.

Then, because I live in Las Vegas, I founded the Las Vegas Convention Speakers Bureau. My father used to make my sister and I listen to self-help gurus like Earl Nightingale. It was nice to find myself working with the people whose books I’d read and icons whom I’d seen on television.

But my passion has always been to write fiction! It took a pandemic and lockdown, which destroyed the speaking business, to pivot so that I could finally take the time to write my first novel, “Sunny’s Secrets.” It is Women’s Fiction and it’s a Medical/Psychological/Suspense Thriller. I love defining characters and building suspense. And when it comes to “Write what you know about,” I finally understand the true meaning of that. That’s why Sunny is a blonde gal from the Midwest; I know her!

What is a favorite compliment you have received on your writing?   

My favorite compliment is from readers who said they couldn’t put it down. I also love to hear it’s a real “page turner.” My very favorite compliment is when a reader asked if it’s possible to transfer “Life Force Energy” between people, like Sunny does in the story. I made up that entire process, but it comes across as something that can actually be done, so that makes me smile.

How are you similar to or different from your lead character?  

Great question! As I mentioned regarding the saying, “Write what you know about,” I identified with Sunny. Her GMC (Goal, Motivation, Conflict) is that she simply wants to help people, which—for her—means being the best nurse and a loving wife. When her Air Force pilot husband is killed by a suicide bomber, she’s lost. When she’s soon given a highly unorthodox opportunity to save her patients, at the expense of others, she’s thrown into a moral dilemma.

I think we all face crises like Sunny does in “Sunny’s Secrets.” And we have to ask ourselves, “What would I do in her situation?” I would absolutely do what she does, so in that regard, we’re very similar. She wants to save everyone, and that’s a trait we share. We differ in that I’m a lot more cynical than Sunny could ever be!

In one sentence, what was the road to publishing like?  

The road to publishing is like riding a roller coaster, with more ups and downs than anyone can imagine!

What is one piece of advice you would give to an aspiring author?  

My best advice is to write! It takes dedication and discipline. Set hours aside each day to write, give yourself a daily word count, and don’t quit until you’ve reached it.

Book Excerpt:

Finally, Tuesday had come and it was time for John to leave. Sunny had taken the day off so she could drive him to the base and say goodbye. They almost made it through their goodbyes without breaking down. Sunny apologized for being emotional. She hadn’t wanted to cry, but she loved him so much she couldn’t help herself.

“Even one day without you is more than I can stand,” she said, huge tears spilling out of her eyes. 

John wiped them away and kissed her cheeks. He’d never loved her more than when she was declaring her love for him. That vulnerability in this otherwise strong woman melted his heart. For a moment, it was as if his life was flashing before his eyes. He saw her as his angel in the hospital where they’d met, his bride coming down the aisle to marry him, and a quick collage of images of her since they’d been married. 

He soon had tears welling up in his own eyes. He promised he’d always be there for her, no matter what. She forced herself to believe him. They kissed, then kissed again. He didn’t pull away one minute before he absolutely had to.

“I love you with all my heart, Sunny. You are the very best thing that has ever happened to me. You make my life worth living, and I can’t imagine not being able to share it with you. Our love has been the greatest blessing God could have ever given me. I love you, angel. You’ll be okay.” He took both her hands in his own and kissed them. “Call Roger and Jen if you need anything. I’ll see you soon.” 

And with one final, deep kiss that would have to last her for the rest of her life, he ran to get on the transport plane. 

Roger was at the base when John left. He had started to join them to say goodbye to his best friend, but when he got close to them, he saw the couple was having a special moment, so he hung back. After John boarded his flight, Roger approached Sunny.

“Sunny, please don’t hesitate to call if you need anything, anything at all! Jen and I are here for you,” he assured her. “We’ll have fun. In fact, plan on coming to our house for dinner Friday night, okay?” She nodded and gave him a hug. She felt a little better for a moment, talking with Roger. Still, she cried all the way home.

Once home, Sunny immediately sensed how empty the house felt. She caught herself thinking about all the little things that she and John had been through together. If she’d been able to see the memories flashing in John’s mind as he was saying goodbye to her, she wouldn’t have been at all surprised to see that they were the very same images that she had seen in that same moment, only from her perspective. They included him proposing to her in the hospital as he recovered from the critical car wreck that nearly killed him, seeing him waiting for her as she walked down the aisle at their wedding, and countless images of them together, moments that showed how madly in love they were with each other. 

It wasn’t long enough. Then again, she realized, a few hundred years with John wouldn’t be enough time for them to express their love for each other.

Sunny plopped down in the big, comfortable chair and thought about what they might be doing now if John was home. She had a great imagination and loved to entertain thoughts of conversations, lovemaking, and even just the quiet times they’d spend at home together.

Her thoughts drifted to John’s deployment to Afghanistan, and how it felt different to her. She wasn’t just afraid. This time, she had a deep, uneasy feeling that he wasn’t going to come back. She tried to quiet the negative thoughts.

Sunny had always been intuitive. In fact, her intuition was a gift she used with her patients. As a nurse, she’d helped countless people when they couldn’t quite explain what was going on in their bodies or where their pain was coming from. Her intuition told her what questions to ask, and their answers would help her zero in on whatever was causing their issues. Whenever she made a suggestion to the doctors, they were always amazed that she was one step ahead of them. Over the years, she’d grown to trust her intuition. Now, she wished it wasn’t so keen.

About the Author

Robin Jay is an award-winning filmmaker and author, speaker, and publisher. She is also a Business Relationship Expert who shares the nuts and bolts of building profitable business relationships with an emphasis on smart ways to network and socialize with clients.

Her clients tagged her “The Queen of the Business Lunch™”.  Robin personally hosted more than 3,000 client lunches and saw her sales increase by more than 2,000%! Her sense of humor and candid approach to sharing the principles that helped her to achieve such tremendous success as an Advertising Account Executive in Las Vegas, Nevada, helped to make her first book an international success. Robin’s award-winning business book is “The Art of the Business Lunch ~ Building Relationships Between 12 and 2” (Career Press.) It has been published in twelve languages worldwide. She’s also a contributor to “Chicken Soup for the Wine Lover’s Soul.” She’s been featured internationally on MSNBC-TV, Newsweek Magazine, CNN, the BBC, the New York Times, The London Financial Times,, and other international and national media outlets.

In 2006, Robin founded the Las Vegas Convention Speakers Bureau. As president, she manages the bureau and coaches speakers to success in person and online. She especially enjoys the cache the bureau lends to create and publish intellectual properties. She edited and published “The Power of the Platform,” a series of three anthologies that feature messages from today’s top motivational speakers, including Jack Canfield, Brian Tracy, and Les Brown

Robin’s passion for storytelling has evolved to presenting messages of empowerment and inspiration in films as writer, producer, and costar of the first funny personal development movies. Her films are collectively known as “The Key Movies.” (see The films star many of today’s top personal development experts, including Jack Canfield, Brian Tracy, don Miguel Ruiz, Rev. Michael Beckwith, John Assaraf, and John Gray. Robin’s writer/producer awards include Best Independent Film, Best Documentary, Best Concept, and Best Original Song for the soundtrack song, “Stronger than Ever.”

Robin took advantage of the recent lockdown to pivot and write her first novel, “Sunny’s Secrets,” a Psychological Suspense story. It follows the life of Sunny Sullivan, a nurse with a special, unorthodox method of healing people.

Most recently, Robin coauthored a memoir with reality TV star Tana Goertz. Robin’s expanded social media reach, including book and movie experts, speakers, and colleagues, has well over 100,000 followers.

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