Elsa is giving away a copy of Touched the Heart, the first book in the series, to a random commenter.
Interview with Elsa Winckler
Susana: What inspired you to start writing?
Elsa: All those happy endings! I’ve always loved to read and loved the happy endings but I didn’t always like the way the two would get together, so I decided to write the kind of story I like to read. I was thrilled to discover there were other people who also enjoyed reading it
Susana: What comes first: the plot or the characters?
Elsa: For me it’s the characters. I try to figure them out, sometimes I even use the Mayer Briggs personality test to really try and understand them! Once I know what makes them tick, the storyline falls into place.
Susana: Are you a plotter or a pantser?
Elsa: A pantser, I’m afraid. It used to bother me but I’ve made peace with the way a story unfolds itself. I have a vague idea of what should happen and then I let the characters tell their story – sometimes with twists that I haven’t foreseen.
Susana: What is one thing your readers would be most surprised to learn about you?
Elsa: I knit. My hands always have to be busy, so when I don’t type, I knit – in front of the television, in bed, in the car (when I’m not driving). When I concentrate on a tricky pattern, my mind wanders and it’s often then that I’d get an idea or realize how to solve a problem I was having with a story.
Susana: Is there a writer you idolize? If so, who?
Elsa: I love Jane Austen, Elizabeth Gaskell, George Eliot, the Brontë sisters. If I have to pick a favourite story, it would be Elizabeth Gaskell’s North and South – a beautiful love story between two complex characters unfolds against the backdrop of a newly industrial England – simply breathtaking (there is also a wonderful BBC DVD available with Richard Armitage as a to-die-for Mr Thornton J )
Susana: What is something you’d like to accomplish in your writing career next year?
Elsa: Up until now, I’ve written mainly category-length love stories but would like to try my hand at something with a little bit of suspense thrown in.
About Touched to the Soul
Zoe Sutherland can’t stand the pushy, arrogant architect David Cavallo. He was just too damn sure of himself, too handsome, too…everything. Maneuvered into working as the interior decorator on his latest project, a glamorous new hotel, Zoe can’t keep her mind on the job. And worse, the strange man won’t give her access to the hotel’s floor plans. How is she supposed to finish the design when she doesn’t have the plans? And when the obnoxious man distracts her with every smoldering look, every touch…
David has one goal: get rid of the pesky interior designer. Since he’s been forced into close proximity with the beautiful Zoe, everything’s gone downhill. And to make matters worse, she’s only out to further her own career—and he’s not about to give her the hotel’s plans so she can steal his ideas. He needs to get her out of his system, and sleeping with her seems like the best way to do that. When it comes to women, he’s found the best way to handle them is to love ’em and leave ’em. But something strange is happening…because after a night of loving Zoe, he’s finding it harder than ever to leave…
And then she swallowed. He bit the insides of his cheeks to prevent him from smiling. So, the lady wasn’t as cool as she pretended to be.
“I tried to contact you after Don and Caitlin’s wedding but you never answered any of my messages.”
She narrowed her eyes. “You know perfectly well why I ignored those messages,” she said primly.
He leaned forward, enjoying her obvious discomfort. “You see, that’s just it. I don’t know. You kissed me, stormed away, and ignored all the messages I sent you.”
Her lips trembled slightly. “You were the one who kissed me,” she said, her eyes stormy.
“You didn’t kiss me back?” he asked, not quite understanding why he couldn’t stop baiting her.
She inhaled audibly, bent her head for a few seconds before she opened the file. “We can go ahead with the contract. That is, if you still want me to.”
“Oh, I still want you…” he said solemnly, waiting a millisecond before he added “…to.”
Her flared nostrils were the only indication that she’d caught his meaning.
“Good.” She got up. “I’ll ask Susan to contact you for the next meeting. Please make sure whoever you send has all the information available—budget, timeline and of course if…”
He also got up slowly. “Seeing that my brother suggested we make use of your firm, I will be working with you. Directly.” He emphasized the last word. “I don’t mind doing favors, but when money is involved, I have to protect the investment we’ll be making. I have to make sure you are not just a pretty face but can actually do the job. You obviously don’t really want to work for me, but you’ve realized it’s good for business. Therefore, I have to make sure our business doesn’t suffer because of yours.”
About the Author
I have been reading love stories for as long as I can remember and when I ‘met’ the classic authors like Jane Austen, Elizabeth Gaskell, Henry James The Brontë sisters, etc. during my studies, I was hooked for life.
I married my college boyfriend and soul mate and after 39 years, 3 beautiful children and 3 grandchildren, he still makes me weak in the knees. We are fortunate to live in the picturesque little seaside village of Betty’s Bay, South Africa with the ocean a block away and a beautiful mountain right behind us. And although life so far has not always been an easy ride, it has always been an exiting and interesting one!
I like the heroines in my stories to be beautiful, feisty, independent and headstrong. And the heroes must be strong but possess a generous amount of sensitivity. They are of course, also gorgeous! My stories typically incorporate the family background of the characters to better understand where they come from and who they are when we meet them in the story.