Thanks for stopping by Peering Through Life’s Window on your blog tour to share about your new release! Suzanne will give away two $10 gift certificates. See below to enter to win one.
Hi Suzanne, first, tell us a little about yourself.
I’m a retired high school teacher, living in Eastern Ontario, Canada. I’m married with three adult children and 5 grandchildren. I’m an introvert, preferring to spend my spare time with a good book or movie. In the summer I enjoy traveling and camping. In the winter I stay indoors by the fire.
We you always an avid reader? If so, what did you read?
I’m asthmatic, and in the 50’s and early 60’s when I was growing up, there were no inhalers like there are today. Each time I had an attack, I was hospitalized, and so I spent a lot of time in bed. Reading was my escape. I loved Nancy Drew books as well as the Donna Parker series. As I got older, I became interested in historical novels, especially those dealing with Ancient Egypt, Greece, and Rome. Gradually, I gravitated towards romance novels. Today, my reading taste is eclectic, although I don’t read horror or erotica.
Let’s talk about your writing. Why do you write?
I write because I have to. It’s a need, the same as eating and breathing. When I was teaching, my favorite part of the curriculum was teaching writing and poetry. I loved encouraging the students to write stories—not really a fan of essay writing, but I taught it too. Now, I feel the stories piling up in my head. I go somewhere and the ideas just come. My greatest thrill as a writer comes from hearing people tell me how much they love my books.
Tell us about your latest book.
All For Love is a romance suspense with an underlying theme of overcoming your fears and self-doubts, and learning to trust again. It’s set in the winter, primarily in Vermont. Olivia is a bodyguard hired to protect a young skier whose life is in danger as well as the girl’s father, a famous author who’s been targeted for revenge.
What inspired you to write this particular book?
There were a number of factors that came into play. I watched a lot of the Olympic skiing last year and I really admired the women competing on such treacherous slopes. My granddaughter is an avid cross-country skier and I knew she’d like the premise of the novel. The other primary motivator was watching people I know overcome tremendous obstacles for the sake of others, especially others bent on revenge for perceived injustices. I hate bullying, and I wanted to write a book where the bully didn’t win, even when he cheated.
Are you a plotter or a pantzer?
I taught English for almost thirty years—taught outlining, plotting, doing character sketches, finding goals and motivation, but when I started writing, all that went out the window. I’ve tried writing the synopsis first, but when I attempt to force the plot in a specific direction, it just doesn’t work. So, I’m a pantzer. I give my characters control of the story and let them take it away. Sometimes I don’t know how the story’s going to end until it happens. I do have a rough idea of where I want it to go, but my characters often surprise me.
Does your faith affect your writing? How?
My faith is part and parcel of who I am. I have some strong opinions, so there are certain topics and types of books I won’t touch. My imagination and talent are God-given, and I think He’s the one who writes the novels with me. He’s my muse. There are often times that something said in the minister’s sermon or in conversation with her ends up in the book. One of my novels, In Plain Sight, grew out of an incident when I was involved in an Easter pageant.
Do you put yourself in your books?
Always. Who I am comes across in the dialogue. I had a friend who read Fire Angel, and when she finished the book she swore Alexis was modeled after my daughter. She was partially right. All of my heroes and heroines are based on the qualities I admire in people. Similarly, my villains represent those I think poorly of or despise.
What is the coolest, wackiest, most risk-taking thing you’ve ever done?
I’m a roller coaster fanatic. I went to Cedar Point in Ohio and rode all the coasters in the park. I’m barely tall enough for the stand-up one. I rode roller-coasters when I was seven months pregnant, so that’s probably the riskiest thing I’ve done.
What is the most embarrassing thing that’s happened to you?
I had my children close together so I was used to cutting their meat. At a fancy dinner, I reached for the plate beside me and started to cut the man’s beef. He stopped me and told me he could handle it. Everyone laughed, but I was really embarrassed.
LOL. That’s so funny, Suzanne. Introduce us to the main character in All for Love.
Olivia is a feisty red head with a Scottish temper. She often speaks without thinking and then regrets her words almost as soon as they’re out. A first class skier, she was an Olympic hopeful until her fiancé and her cousin were killed in an avalanche. Since she blamed herself, she gave up skiing and moved away from her home in Colorado to Philadelphia. Determined to help others, Livy had planned to become a police officer, but instead got a job with a personal security company working as a bodyguard. She’s had a tough time getting the respect she needs from her male coworkers who tend to judge by appearances, but she’s earned her stripes. She’s a crack shot, has had survivalist training, and will do whatever it takes to protect her charge, even if that means taking a bullet for them. Her favorite story is from the Arabian Nights and it’s the story of Scheherazade who offers herself as the sultan’s new wife to save the lives of others.
Thank you for having me here today.
It’s my pleasure.
To overcome your fear, you must first face it.
Someone is out to destroy Greg Simmons and everyone he has ever loved. After an accident leaves his teenage daughter depressed and distraught, Greg will do anything to make her happy again.
Olivia Marshall lost both her fiancé and her cousin in a deadly avalanche. She has vowed never to set foot on a ski hill again. But now, working as a bodyguard with Anderson Security, Olivia must face her greatest fears to save Greg and his daughter.
Something about Olivia’s determination strikes a chord in Greg, but will she be the salvation he needs, or will he be her destruction?
You can find All for Love on GoodReads
Susanne Matthews grew up as an avid reader of all types of books, but always with a penchant for happily ever after romances. In her imagination, she travelled to foreign lands, past and present, and soared into the future. Today, she has made her dreams come true. A retired educator, she now gets to spend her time writing, so she can share her adventures with her readers. She loves the ins and outs of romance, and the complex journey it takes to get from the first word to the last period of a novel. As she writes, her characters take on a life of their own, and she shares their fears and agonies on the road to self-discovery and love.
Susanne lives in Cornwall, Ontario with her husband. She has three adult children and five grandchildren. When she isn’t writing, she enjoys reading, chatting on the Internet with her writer friends, and hearing from her readers.
You can find and contact Susanne here:
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