Today we have author Susan Rae with us to tell you all about her new novel, ICE Blue.
Hi, I’m Susan Rae, author of romantic suspense novels. First, I want to thank Traci-Anne for hosting me today and giving me the opportunity to tell you a little about myself and my newest sizzling suspense, ICE blue.
ICE blue is the sequel to my award winning novel, heartbeats, about a Chicago cop family named DeLuca. But don’t let the fact that it is a sequel fool you--you can enjoy ICE blue even if you haven’t read heartbeats. Each book has its own romance and suspense storyline and is complete within itself.
Now for the questions.
When did you first realize you wanted to be a writer?
I think, perhaps, in fifth grade when I wrote my first melodrama for a Girl Scout Drama Badge, although the seed was probably always there, ever since I learned to read. Later, when I played Jo in the eighth grade production of Little Women, I felt it was typecasting.
How did you get into romance?
Remember that melodrama I mentioned in my first answer? It wasn’t so far, really, from romantic suspense. It had a hero and heroine, a love story, a dastardly villain, and lots of suspense! Later in college where I majored in English Literature, I grew tired of almost everything literary ending in the death or suicide of one of the main characters. When I decided to write my own novels, I picked romance because I wanted my characters to have that Happy Ever After ending. Or as I call it, that “Happily Moving On” ending.
What are your struggles when writing?
My main struggle is just taking the time to sit in the chair and write the book, even when the story or particular plot point isn’t coming as quickly as I’d like. I’ve learned to just concentrate on the next scene, sketch it quickly on paper, and then get to the computer and start typing. Within minutes of doing that, the scene usually starts flowing out nicely. And I don’t worry about getting it down perfect the first time. My only concern at that point is just getting the scene into the book file.
Where do your story ideas come from?
Perhaps a better question would be, where don’t your story ideas come from? I grab ideas from newspaper articles (I read the paper every day), from experiences of people I know, or even just from watching people and thinking he or she would make a great character in a novel. Of course, once I get all that input, I stir it all up and move it around until I come up with a work of fiction that has its own unique storyline and characters. In ICE blue, my main character, Angela DeLuca, actually came from heartbeats. I had created this family of cops, the DeLucas, and knew I wanted to write another book about them. I also knew there was a younger sister in the family who I had made a paramedic instead of a cop, but I actually had to go back into my own book and find out her name. Then I tried to think what kind of story I could write about her that had plenty of suspense in it. I had read articles about illegal immigration and human trafficking, so I thought why not have her love interest an Immigration and Customs Enforcement agent who is working on a case. She wants to care and protect the victim she comes in contact with and her unborn baby, he wants to use her to solve his case. Thus we have conflict and emotion, and with bringing other emotional elements into the story, a novel is born.
What is your writing method?
I’m actually a plotter. Once I get an idea for the story and who the main characters are, I get my notebook out and start brainstorming. I come up with the main story conflict, the conflict between the characters, sketch the characters out, decide who I need for secondary characters (villians, etc.). I usually already have an idea for the beginning and the end, so I start working toward jotting down the main beats in the storyline--those scenes that move the story in another direction. Because mine are suspense novels, I have to have a pretty good idea of where I’m going and how the characters get there. At some point though, I just sit down and start writing. That’s when the magic happens--the surprises--as the characters start taking over the work and things happen that I never thought of originally.
Why did you decide to go with e-publisher, Musa Publishing?
My debut novel, heartbeats, was originally published in mass paperback by Berkley Publishing. Unfortunately, life events curtailed my writing for a while. When I was ready to write again, I looked around and saw so many people reading on their e-readers that I decided that was the way to go. Musa was new and I was excited about getting in on the ground floor of an exciting new venture. I also didn’t want to go it as a self-published author because I didn’t want to deal with all the technicalities of publishing myself, i.e. editing, book design, getting the book out to all the major markets. I signed with Musa for an e-book release of heartbeats, the release of my second novel, freefall, and a few months after that for ICE blue and the third novel in the DeLuca series, TRUE blue which I am currently working on.
Is there anything you want readers to get out of your books?
I would like readers to be in a good place after they finish one of my books. I would like them to see through my writing and my characters that although life can be tough at times, with perseverance, a positive attitude, love, and trust in one another, we can get to that “Happily Moving On” ending.
Where can readers find your books?
My books are available for download directly from my publisher and all major e-Book retailers. The major links are below:
Thank you for spending this time with me. Please read on for a little more info about me and an excerpt of ICE blue. For more excerpts and information on my books, please visit me at www.susanrae.com.
Author of contemporary Romantic Suspense/Mystery novels, Susan Rae loves writing romantic suspense because it allows her to combine a sexy, passionate love story with a gritty suspense tale--in her opinion, the best of both worlds. When she is not writing, you might find her on the golf course working on her handicap or traveling around the country with her husband and empty nest puppies, Ginger and Nikute, seeking out settings for her novels.
freefall, Susan's second novel, takes place in Wisconsin's Kettle Moraine Forest and beautiful Door County. ICE blue returns to the busy streets of Chicago and the shores of Lake Michigan to continue the story of the DeLuca family which began in her award winning first novel, heartbeats. She is currently working on the third book in the DeLuca series, TRUE blue, due out in 2014, where it seems her characters must take a trip to Montana's majestic Glacier National Park--a fact which pleases Susan immensely.
ICE blue Blurb:
When lives are on the line, sometimes the wrong thing is the right thing to do.
Born into a Chicago cop family, while her brothers get their rush from catching bad guys, paramedic Angela DeLuca gets hers from saving lives. A tough beauty with a heart perhaps too big, Angela champions the underdog because, as the youngest of six siblings, she often felt like one.
ICE Special Agent Troy Deavers became a cop to prove he wasn’t like his father—a southern politician who brought his family down with greed and corruption. Troy doesn’t suffer victims well. At first intrigued by Angela’s passion, he soon fears that the fire in Angela’s heart will be her undoing.
What happens when Troy falls in love with the lovely but infuriating Angela, the Chicago paramedic who insists on protecting a young witness and her unborn baby—a witness who could break his case wide open?
A rush of adrenalin shot through Angela as she approached the accordioned car where a cop stood, adamantly motioning her over.
“What’ve we got?” she asked the officer. Another man, not a cop or rescue personnel, she presumed, as he wore no uniform jacket—hell, he wasn’t wearing a jacket at all—stood beside the officer, his back to her. His head and arms disappeared into the opening where the driver’s window should be. Blood, bright red and vibrant against the white snow, trickled from beneath the door at the man’s feet…
She touched the shoulder of the man leaning through the window.
“Hey, it’s okay, we’ll take it from here.”
The guy didn’t seem to hear her. More rescue vehicles were arriving on scene, sirens blaring.
She called more loudly. “Hey, I said we’ve got it!”
Finally he turned and gave her a quick assessment. She could swear she saw a touch of amusement in those blue-green eyes he flashed at her.
“Listen, lady, if I ease up on this,” he said smoothly, “this guy’ll bleed out.” Turning his back to her, he said to the driver, “Hang in there, buddy. I’ve got you covered…
Angela squeezed her arm in beside the man-in-the-window’s shoulder and pressed her fingers against the driver’s throat. He was tachy. His skin cold and clammy.
Withdrawing her hand, she bent, unzipped her jump bag, and grabbed a handful of trauma dressings. “Listen, thanks for your help,” she said firmly to the man beside her, “but, we’ve got it now.” She ripped a couple of gauze packs open with her teeth and added, “You’d better get into a warm car yourself or we’ll be treating you next.” The guy’s wavy, mid-length hair and cotton-shirted shoulders were quickly becoming coated with snow. It was clear he wasn’t from around here given his lack of outerwear.
He cocked his head toward her again and this time there was no mistaking that amused look. Angela shot him her most official glare. Her hands, loaded with supplies, were poised, ready to do battle just as soon as he got the hell out of her way.
His eyes narrowed ever so slightly on her. He glanced back into the car to where Josie was squeezing in through the passenger window and settled his gaze once more on Angela. “If you’re sure you’re ready?”
Shit! Was this guy for real? “Out of my way!” she ordered.
“Fine, he’s all yours.”
Before she was barely aware of it, he had backed out of the window and was holding his bloodied hands up into the air.
With an irritated shake of her head, she shoved past him, head and hands diving through the open window. With the pressure released, blood soaked more quickly through the jacket. She eased the jacket aside to expose the gash and slammed the gauze dressing against the pulsing artery. In the slight gap that remained of the front passenger compartment, Josie ripped I.V. packages open and readied a needle to pump the guy with fluids.
The driver started to shake, shock taking hold.
“Hold on there, buddy,” she called to him, but he drifted into unconscious; his eyes rolled back in his head. The sweet smell of warm blood against the crisp frigid air burned Angela’s nostrils. She felt a chill snake up her own spine. She and Josie were locked in a battle against time and the cold—they had to keep this guy alive until Rescue could get him out of here.
Glancing out the window, she noted that Mr. Helpful was gone.
“Where the hell are those Jaws?” she yelled at the officer.
It’d been a long night. She’d already lost one patient on her watch; she’d be damned if she’d lose another.
Copyright © 2013 by Susan Rae