I'm happy to welcome Susan back with the third book in this series. I've loved all three, and I know you will, too.
Susan, I love your new photo. God has really been moving in your writing life. What do you see on the horizon?
This life was something that took me by surprise – I had always thought I’d be a missionary. And I’d like to think I still am. *grin* So, my only goals are to write the best books I can, to the best of my ability. I’m so blessed that God gives me some excellent stories to write. So, I hope He takes them and does amazing things with them.
Tell us a little about your family.
Oh, I’m so biased…I have four amazing children who are now teenagers. I think the teenage era is when you reap the rewards for all the runny snot years. (Although those are fun, too, just in a different way). I love seeing my teenagers discovering the people God created them to be, each with their own interests, from drama and singing, to sports, to reaching out into the community. My husband runs a posh hotel, and I am so blessed to be able to stay home and write.
Has your writing changed your reading habits? If so, how?
It’s sort of wrecked them, honestly. I am SUCH a picky reader now, and hate that about myself. A great book is one where I turn off my editor and just enjoy. I do like series, and when I find an author, I tend to buy everything they have. I try to read widely, also, from secular fiction to biographies and literary fiction. My favorite book recently has been Marley and Me. What fun!
What are you working on right now?
I just turned in Double Trouble, the second of my “Trouble” collection, featuring a character named PJ Sugar. She’s a wanna-be PI, and I’d like to think she’s my alter ego. The series is set in a fictional version of my hometown, so it was fun to “go back” there and write about all my favorite haunts. It’s mystery and suspense, and humor and romance all tied together.
What outside interests do you have?
Outside interests? You mean there is more than writing? I love my church, and being outside. In the summer, I garden, and hike and canoe and camp. I also picked up a new sport this summer – skydiving. Okay, I only went once, but in my head, I’m a skydiver. I can’t wait to go again!
You're more brave than I am. Of course, I would have done it, too, when I was your age. How do you choose your settings for each book?
I choose places I’d like to visit, or something that holds a particular story element – like Alaska, and being lost in the mountains, or Kellogg (PJ Sugar’s town) a cute hamlet outside of Minneapolis on the lake. I like to invest myself into setting, so I usually travel there so I can get a great feel for the place. Then, it’s easier to make it come alive.
If you could spend an evening with one historical person, who would it be and why?
Abraham Lincoln (and his wife!). Because increasingly, I’m impressed with leaders who have to make difficult decisions. And I’d like to know the kind of person who can do that well.
What is the one thing you wish you had known before you started writing novels?
That it gets HARDER every novel! Every novel you’re competing against YOURSELF to be better. I love the competition, and the push, but sometimes not the angst!
What new lessons is the Lord teaching you right now?
To throw myself into His arms, approaching the throne of grace boldly, and trusting Him to have His way in my life. I tend to be a control freak, so it’s a daily discipline for me.
I know. I've had a deep walk with the Lord for several years, but He's drawing me even deeper right now. What are the three best things you can tell other authors to do to be successful?
Take criticism well, strive to learn, constantly, and enjoy life (because, there IS more than just writing). Life gives us material to write about.
Tell us about the featured book.
Finding Stefanie is the third book in the Noble Legacy collection – about the sister to Rafe and Nick. She has put her dreams on hold to run the family ranch for the past ten years, and it’s time for her to find that maybe they didn’t pass her by. I also brought in Lincoln Cash from Taming Rafe, and gave him a secret. It was a fun book to write because of the themes – what strength, exactly, does a man bring to a woman? And vice versa. I hope reader’s enjoy her story.
I know I did. How can readers find you on the Internet?
I have two places – my author site, http://www.susanmaywarren.com/, and my site for aspiring writers – http://www.mybooktherapy.com/ where I blog about writing craft, and have a community for writers.
Thank you, Susan, for spending this time with us. It's always a joy to have you stop by.
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