It's release day for Renee's book, The Beast of Stratton!
Leave a comment after the interview for a chance to win a free copy!
Hi Renee! Bet this is quite a day for you. Congratulations on a milestone. Release Day for The Beast of Stratton. Here's a little about the book. We'll have an excerpt later!
He appears the beast but she sees his heart.
Architect Aimee Hart, determined to locate her father, infiltrates Miles Stratton’s engineering firm as a secretary. Her presence wrenches the shaggy, wounded man from his penthouse, and the quest begins.
He’s been betrayed by his best friend. Miles would rather hide than help, especially his daughter. But it isnt over. Someone’s trying to destroy Stratton Industrial. A war veteran, he knows how to defend his own, the Beast of Stratton can do it again.
Let's get to the interview and find out more about you.
Describe how you feel about seeing your book published.
I guess I’m still in shock. I think when I hold the book in my hands, it will become real. I’ve seen the e-book on Amazon and the ARC (Advanced Reader Copy) on my Kindle, but it’s still a dream for me. LOL God’s so good and He’s made all this possible. Right now, all I can do is praise His name and wait for reality to set in.
I hear you! What got you started on writing fiction novels?
The truth? My husband. I’ve written poetry since I was a teenager, but a novel? I’d never even thought about it! One day, I bought a Christian romance off Amazon…or so I’d thought…and wasn’t very happy. James—that’s my husband’s name—took the brunt of my frustration for almost an hour. I ranted about everything from the sex scenes to the profanity (and I hadn’t even made through half of the book before it landed in the cybernetic trash bin!) He nodded and grunted. The usual male response to a wifely tantrum, I guess. He looked up from his prone position in his recliner (he was watching football), and said the words that changed my life, “If you don’t like it, do something about it. Write your own.” So I did. That was almost five years ago.
A big thanks to James for getting you started! What’s your favorite genre to read and to write?
What a question! Well, let’s see…I love to read almost anything. I’m pretty eclectic. Science fiction, mystery, romance, you name it. The only thing I don’t have in my library? Horror (shudder), and you won’t find me with very many children’s novels. That’s not saying I haven’t read them. I used to when my son was young. I just don’t anymore. ;) My favorite? I love a good suspense and Scottish romance. What can I say? I’m a sucker for a tall highlander.
Although I like to read everything from historical to sci-fi, including dystopian, I write Contemporary Romantic Suspense sometimes with a touch of mystery.
What do you want to convey through your stories?
All of my stories contain a spiritual message….a simple one. Life’s real and it’s hard, but we aren’t alone.
With trial comes baggage…and every person clings to something. Sooner or later, we must face it. We can choose to face it alone or with the Almighty at our side. Either way, He’s waiting for us to ask for Him. However, the choice to hope and trust? That begins with us—yes, even the Christian.
Very true. Did you find it easy or difficult to let other people read your work when you first began writing?
I needed people to read my work. I’d never written a book in my life. Reading wasn’t writing… at least, as far as I was concerned. I wanted advice, feedback, HELP! I approached writing the way I did pharmacy school. Fail, learn, fail, learn…the best part of this learning process was that when I screwed up, no one could get hurt!
I handled the rejections and cruel comments like I always do, shrugged them off and kept going. Wondering what I’m talking about? My skin’s thick. I’m a pharmacist, remember? Need to learn how to take some crap, work in a pharmacy for a day.
My daughter-in-law would heartily agree. She was a pharmacy assistant for a while. Lots of paperwork and grumpy folks to deal with. Rough work!
What does the process of writing do for you personally?
Writing has brought me closer to the Lord in so many ways, Nancy. The spiritual messages in my books aren’t just for the readers. They’re for me too. Hope, faith, love, trust…God is speaking to me while I’m writing these stories. The struggles my characters are facing and overcoming lift me high into the heavens. It’s a wonderful experience.
I agree completely! Do your characters ever surprise you?
Oh yes. I’m not a plotter in the sense of the word. I have a rough idea as to where the story is going at the beginning but the twists and turns of the book are a complete surprise to me. The characters and their changes throughout the story sometimes hit me upside the head. I have to praise God for those moments because they are purely His doing.
It's fun, isn't it? What work of fiction would you say affected you the most? And what was the effect?
You may not have heard of this one…but then again…I read this book a long time ago. I wouldn't proclaim it for a rendition of Scripture. It’s not. The author wrote this book to portray a vision he claims he had from the Lord. It changed the way I thought of the spiritual realm. It was Rick Joyner’s The Final Quest.
I'll have to read that one. Sound interesting. What are you working on now?
I’m finishing a novella for Prism Book Group called Racing Hearts. It’s very dear to my heart. I’m almost done with it and I’ll be shooting it off to my editor soon. When I’m done with that, I’ll start editing the second book in the Snowy Range Chronicles. The first book, To Soar on Eagles’ Wings is due to be released in July.
Busy lady! What are your plans for future writing?
As soon as I finish editing the second book in my series, I start researching the third! I’m really excited about this one. I may need to plan a trip to Montana or Idaho for the research project though. We’ll see. I’d also like to write a Christmas story. I attempted it during NaNoWriMo this last year, but alas, other things reared their heads. We’ll see…we’ll see!
I know you'll do well with whatever is in store. Congratulations again on your release day! Now here's an excerpt from The Beast of Stratton:
She’d called his friends, the family. She’d even tried her stepmother who’d hung up on her. Well, okay, maybe that wasn’t the brightest idea.
A red rose rolled across her father’s tattered note, caught in the breeze from the open window. Sliding the pane down, she picked up the flower. The words on the page blurred as she buried her nose in the soft petals.
Instead of saying goodbye to his wife in his last letter, he’d simply left explicit instructions not to follow him. Aimee snorted. Like the woman would care. He’d sent it with the rose and an antique necklace. She held the thick chain aloft and peered at the golden key spinning in the light. The jewelry had probably cost a fortune.
And her stepmother was nowhere to be found. Scratch that. According to her, she wanted to be left alone. It didn’t make a difference to Aimee what the letter said and to whom, she’d follow. A small smile worked its way to her lips as she fastened the necklace around her neck.
The zipper stuck on the edge of the suitcase and she gave it a hard jerk. Dragging the bulging bag off the bed, it hit the floor with a thunk. She slid her arms into her jacket and looped her purse over the handle. She dropped the rose, and it landed beside her plane ticket next to her wallet. Before latching her fingers around her bag, she tucked the key under her shirt out of sight. “Stratton Industrial, here I come.”
Here's the purchase link for this exciting story:
Available for purchase: Amazon
Remember to leave a comment for a chance to win a free copy! Now here's a little bit about Renee:
Raised in Louisiana and Wyoming, Renee started writing poetry in junior high school and that, as they say, was that. After having her son, a desire to attend pharmacy school sent her small family to Laramie and she’s been counting pills ever since. While writing’s her first love, well, after the Lord and her husband, she also likes to fish and hunt as well as pick away on her classical guitar.
Nestled against the Black Hills with her husband, crazy old dog and ornery cat, she serves the community of northeastern Wyoming as a pharmacist and pens her Christian stories, keeping them interesting with action and intrigue, of course. She loves to interact with readers and invites you to check out her website, blog, and social media.
Group Blog: The Diamond Mine of Christian Fiction