I am so thrilled to introduce you to romantic suspense author Marta Perry. I’ve read Marta’s books long before I was a published author and always loved them. If you haven’t picked up a book from Marta be sure you do. Right after reading her interview, that is!
Q: Let me start with asking you to tell us a little bit about yourself.
A. Thanks so much for allowing me to be with you. I’m a lifelong Pennsylvania resident and of Pennsylvania Dutch background, so that has been an invaluable aid to me in creating the Amish suspense books I’m writing now. My husband and I live in a century-and-a-half-old farmhouse in a rural valley in east central Pennsylvania. We have three children who have blessed us with six delightful grandchildren.
Q: When did you first realize you wanted to be a writer?
A. When I was eight, I read my first Nancy Drew book, The Secret in the Old Clock. Most little girls reach the end and want to be Nancy—I reached the end and wanted to be the person who created that wonderful, exciting world!
Q: Could you give us the highlights of your professional writing career including how you got your first writing break?
A. Writing was a dream that had been put on the back burner for marriage, children, and career. I was working as a church educator when I decided that I could write the kinds of short stories for children that appeared in the educational materials we used. The first story I wrote sold on the third try—a good thing, because I’m not sure I had it in me to send it out again! I soon learned that rejection is just part of a writer’s life, and for a number of years I wrote short fiction for magazines while working another job. Eventually I had the opportunity to write full-time, and that seemed to coincide with the opening of the Love Inspired line by Harlequin. I submitted a story and was fortunate enough to sell during that first year. Writing for Love Inspired has been a wonderful experience, and it has led me to the opportunity to write for other lines and publishers as well. I’m currently writing an Amish romance series for Berkley Books, an Amish suspense series for HQN Books, and I continue to write for Love Inspired as I’m able.
Q: Would you tell us about your current book release?
A: Danger in Plain Sight is the third book in my Amish romantic suspense series for HQN Books. Libby Morgan returns home in response to a plea for help from a childhood friend, Amish teacher Esther Zook, but she’s too late—Esther’s buggy has been hit by a hit-and-run driver, and Esther lies in a coma from which she may never wake. Libby’s search for the truth couples her inevitably with the man she most wants to avoid—Police Chief Adam Byler. Their closeness may re-ignite their feelings for each other, if only they can survive a determined and ruthless murderer long enough to learn the truth.
Q: Where did you get your inspiration for DANGER IN PLAIN SIGHT?
A: I had an image in my mind of an Amish buggy on a lonely road at night with a car speeding toward it. The entire story grew from that initial image.
Q: What is the main thing you hope readers remember from this story?
A: I hope readers gain an insight into the Amish way of life and an appreciation for the love that builds bridges between people.
Q: What is your favorite scene/chapter from the book?
A: My favorite scene is when Esther struggles to regain her memory and her dignity after the near-fatal accident, showing the strength and empathy between the women in the story.
Q: What inspires you to write?
A. There isn’t anything I’d rather do, so I don’t wait for inspiration. I start writing, and the inspiration comes.
Q: How has being a published novelist differed from your expectations of the profession?
A: Although there is much more non-creative work associated with being published, it’s still the best job in the world!
Q: What advice or tips do you have for writers who are just getting started?
A: Read a great deal of what you aspire to write, and write constantly.
Q: Would you share with us what you are working on now?
A. Right now I’m working on HOME BY DARK, the first book in a new Amish suspense trilogy for HQN Books. It’s scheduled to be released in January, 2013.
Q: When you’re not writing what do you like to do?
A. I enjoy reading, traveling, and spending time with my amazing grandkids.
Q: Anything else you’d like to tell or share with us?
A. I appreciate the opportunity to be with you today. I’m always happy to hear from readers and other writers. If anyone would like to receive a signed bookmark and my brochure of Pennsylvania Dutch recipes, just email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
SUSAN SLEEMAN grew up in a small Wisconsin town where she spent her summers reading Nancy Drew and developing a love of mystery and suspense books. Today, she channels this enthusiasm into hosting the popular internet website TheSuspenseZone.com and writing romantic suspense and mystery novels.
Much to her husband’s chagrin, Susan loves to look at everyday situations and turn them into murder and mayhem scenarios for future novels. If you’ve met Susan, she has probably figured out a plausible way to kill you and get away with it. Don’t worry, she’d never follow through on it.
Her GARDEN GATE MYSTERY series featuring landscape designer Paige Turner, debuted in October 2010 with NIPPED IN THE BUD in Barbour Books Hometown Mysteries line. The second book, READ BETWEEN THE TINES released in e-book format in the Spyglass Lane Mystery series in February of 2012.
Her first romantic suspense novel, featuring the Morgan Brothers, released with Ryan’s story in HIGH-STAKES INHERITANCE , Russ’s story in BEHIND THE BADGE and the Reid’s story in THE CHRISTMAS WITNESS.
This year Susan’s latest mini-series about five adopted siblings who leave law enforcement to form a private investigations firm called the Justice Agency debuted in June with DOUBLE EXPOSURE and in November, DEAD WRONG will release. Watch for the last three books in the series in 2013.
Susan currently lives in Florida, but has had the pleasure of living in nine states. Her husband is a church music director and they have two beautiful daughters, a very special son-in-law and an adorable grandson. In her spare time, you can find her traveling to Oregon to visit her children and grandson, reading, gardening or working on TheSuspenseZone.com.
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