Connie, how did you decide to write romantic suspense?
Good question. I didn’t start out writing suspense, but rather western historicals. I grew up watching westerns on television, so it seemed natural. Finally, I started reading suspense, like Mary Higgins Clark, and I loved the stories, but I always said I wasn’t smart enough to write those. When I found Love Inspired Suspense books, I knew I had found my home.
Have you had any real-life mysteries or suspenseful moments? Moments you thought you might die?
Not sure I should be telling this in case me kids or grandkids are tuning in. When I was in high school, I would stop by my boyfriend’s house (now he’s my husband…) every morning on the way to school for five minutes. One morning it was really foggy, and I couldn’t see his drive. I thought I saw it and slowed to make the turn when I realized it was the wrong place and I stopped in the highway. Suddenly, a huge semi-truck whizzed past me missing me by inches. All I could think was my parents would kill me if I’d gotten hit…
Not a bright move on my part, but once I stopped to help someone who had car trouble. This was before cell phones and a man in a broken-down Bronco was sitting on the side of the road about a mile from my house. I stopped and asked when I got to my house if I could call someone for him. He said no but I could give him a ride a couple of miles away. Instead of saying no like I should’ve, I didn’t want to be rude, and agreed to give him a ride. He went back to his vehicle and grabbed something from the floorboard, wrapped it in a rag, and got in my vehicle. I glanced down and realized it was a gun. I’m sure he didn’t want someone stealing it, but I put myself in an awfully bad situation. Luckily, he had no ill intentions and I dropped him off safely.
Oh my goodness Connie, how terrifying! I’m glad it turned out okay. How do you find time to write? Do you have a favorite spot to write?
I have more time to write now than I ever had. All my kids are grown, and my husband works outside of the home. Things can still distract me, as well as everyday life.
I like to write at my table in the middle of the dining room. This is why I need the house to myself or I drive everyone crazy. I sit down early in the morning and get to work on critiques or research. But my most productive time is about 11-3.
Interesting, that’s my least productive time. How do you fight distractions?
If I really need to get the words in, I set a timer for 15-minute writer sprint followed by a 5-minute break for at least 4 rounds. Often, I do more, but I figure if I work from home, an hour of effort is never too much work.
Do you have a favorite place you go for inspiration? Or a favorite place to relax and renew your mind?
I love to take long walks. Not only is the exercise good for me, but just to give my mind a break and enjoy the great outdoors does wonders for my attitude.
Going undercover as a nanny brings presumed-dead ex-US Marshal Kylie Stone closer to catching the man who murdered the witness in her protection—and also killed Texas Ranger Luke Dryden’s sister. When someone tries to kidnap the twins in her care, Kylie must tell their uncle the truth…and convince Luke to help her. But will revealing her identity put all their lives at stake?
Keep your eyes open in October for Texas Christmas Revenge by Connie.
Connie, thanks so much for spending time with us.