Today my guest is Elke Feuer, whose debut novel, For the Love of Jazz, was recently published by Crimson Romance. Welcome to Susana’s Parlour, Elke!
What advice would you give to writers just starting out?
Never give up and don’t listen to naysayers who don’t believe in your dream.
Do you ever suffer from writer’s block? If so, what do you do about it?
I usually have one or more stories floating around in my head so I don’t have a problem with writer’s block. (Put away those rotten tomatoes.) What I do suffer from is story block, where I hit a roadblock in the story (plot holes, or characters who don’t want to talk). I deal with it by reviewing the synopsis, ask what if questions and/or do character interrogations. If those don’t work, I read a book and then come back to it.
Tell us something about your newest release that is NOT in the blurb.
William and Lola, two ghosts in the story, try to help my main characters solve the mystery by taking over their bodies. They also ramp up the sexual tension between the h/h through their connections to each other. I love these ghosts! They pushed their way into the story, but definitely made it better.
Are you working on something at present that you would like to tell us about?
Yes, the title of my current WIP is Deadly Bloodlines and its book 1 in a 3 book series that’s set in Grand Cayman where I live. It’s about the daughter of a serial killer who returns home and is forced to confront secrets she kept hidden for twenty years when a copycat killer immerges.
What are you reading now?
I’m reading two books at the moment. Enchanted by Nikki Jefford and Delirious by Lauren Oliver. Both YA novels.
What is one thing your readers would be most surprised to learn about you?
I have a sarcastic sense of humor that I don’t let it out when I interact online. It jumps out and bites you when we’re face to face. J
Is there a writer you idolize? If so, who?
Yes, Nora Roberts. I admire her drive and sustainability. I’m striving for everything she’s accomplished: bestselling books, setting up writing charities, and having my books turned into movies, just to name a few. I have a ribbon I wear to conferences that says “Move over Nora”.
Do you have a favorite quote or saying?
“Writers write.” Simple, but so important.
Do you write in multiple genres or just one? If just one, would you consider straying outside your genre?
I starting writing contemporary, historical romance, and time travel novels, and recently branched into romantic suspense. My latest novel is bordering on a thriller. I never say never when it comes to genres as all types of story ideas jump into my head (along with characters) and I feel it’s my duty to tell them and not be limited by something as trivial as genre.
What is something you’d like to accomplish in your writing career next year?
Oh, there’s so many, but my main one is to self-publish a writing help book that’s bubbling in the back of my brain. Grand Cayman has a large writing community, however there’s very little connectivity. I’d love to organize events where writers can connect with each other and help budding writers, and published authors can connect with the community. It’s small, but very supportive.
Who gave you the writing advice that sticks with you to this day?
Kelly L. Stone who said in her book Time To Write “If something is important to you, you make time for it.” It reminds me that I have to work my schedule around writing and not the other way around.
Restoration architect Josie Fagan takes on a project with lawyer and senator’s son, Patrick Pullman. It’s the perfect match. She needs his endorsement to save her business and he wants to restore his ancestral Chicago home. Love wasn’t part of her plan. Neither was being asked to stay at his home, haunted by ghosts, or discovering she has a claim to his home—which she adores. When she finds out his family may be responsible for her aunt’s disappearance fifty years ago, it’s a race to unearth the truth before she loses not only her business and her heart, but her life.
Patrick can’t deny his attraction to Josie and is willing to take a chance on love since his broken engagement a year earlier. Things become complicated when he learns of their family connection and her claim to the home he loves. He doesn’t believe in ghosts, or that his family is involved in her aunt’s disappearance, so insists they work together. But, when he starts seeing his uncle’s ghost, and threats are made on her life, he’s forced to confront the possibility his family could be responsible.
Please meet me, it’s important! Lola pulls her knee length coat closer to her petite frame and suppresses the tickle of fear at the base of her spine. It’s late, but she can’t ignore her friend’s urgent request.
Cool night air rustling through the leaves is the only noise. Visitors to the park are gone, leaving behind dark empty walkways and overflowing garbage bins. Crunching leaves and strange noises in the black distant start her heart racing. This is a bad idea.
She sees her friend coming in the distance and smiles in welcome and relief. As they draw closer, there is no smile in return. Normally cool but inviting eyes shine with malice. Lola’s eyes widen in surprise when a gun is pointed at her. Before she can scream the sting and burning of flesh seize her as bullets from the outstretched gun enter her shoulder once, twice. She falls to her knees.
Her eyes fill with horror as reality sets in. “Why?”
Silent hate glares from behind the barrel of the gun and another bullet fires, this time hitting her leg.
“Help!” she screams. Her gaze shifts frantically down lonely sidewalks. No one is coming. It crushes her like the pain tearing her apart.
Another shot fires and hits her other leg and Lola knows she is meant to suffer first. She raises her hand in a frail attempt to stop the bullets. It doesn’t make a different. The gun fires again and blood pools around her and the icy ground beneath her fingertips.
Hot tears spill as she thinks of William. If she’d listened to her intuition, she could be spooned against him instead of dying in the dirt like an animal abandoned by its owner.
She doesn’t want to die and leave him or the happiness she’d found. She screams until her lungs burn with the sensation they’ll burst from the strain.
Anger boils the blood still running through her veins. She longs to take the gun and shoot back. Have them feel her pain. To feel the agony of regret: words left unspoken, unshared kisses and things left undone and fear of the unknown that lies in the darkness swirling in the distance, and the anguish of the unanswered question. Why?
She remembers the offered friendship, smiles and the laughter they shared. It was all a lie! Heartache crushes her, dulling the pain of her physical wounds. “This isn’t over,” she vows, even as life begins to drain from her weak frame.
“You’re over,” he spat back at her.
Images of the moment she met William, their first kiss, and their lovemaking flickers like a movie before her closed eyes. She won’t share the rest of this life with him, bear his children, or grow old with him, but she takes comfort in knowing she’ll see him again, love him again and no one will take it away. She clings to the hope she can wait for William until they are together again. Yes, she will wait. Silent calm seeps in as her life slips away.
About the Author
Elke lives in Grand Cayman with her husband and two kids. Reading, spending time with her family, traveling, and meeting people is her joy. Writing is her passion.
She stumbled into writing suspense, and to her surprise found she enjoyed it, along with writing about serial killers. Elke is fascinated by them, and what motivates them to kill. She writes time travel, historical, and contemporary novels to even out her dark side.