It’s my great pleasure to have the author of Rescued by a Stranger, Lizbeth Selvig here with me today at My Written Romance. My review of Rescued by a Stranger will be live on the site tomorrow.
And now for the interview:
Hi, Lizbeth! Welcome to My Written Romance!
Tell us a little bit about yourself
I live in Minnesota with my husband, our 13-year-old border collie, and my gray Arabian horse, Jedi. My daughter, son, and daughter-in-law are the “parents” of our many four-legged grandbabies–some more exotic than others. In addition to five dogs, three cats and several horses, we have a wallaby, an alpaca, a pot-bellied pig, a goat, a donkey, and some sugar gliders!
I have a journalism degree and worked as a reporter and a magazine editor. I’ve been writing fiction since I was 11 but I didn’t get super-serious until I entered the Romance Writers of America Golden Heart contest in 2010. I won my category (Single Title Contemporary) and that book was purchased by Avon and became “The Rancher and the Rock Star.”
I love to hike, quilt, horseback ride and eat chocolate.
Can you give us the Cliff’s Notes version of what your book is about?
Jill Carpenter is on her way to a try-out with the U.S. Equestrian Team’s brand new coach when she swerves off the road to avoid hitting a stray dog. She’s ‘rescued by a stranger’ who appears on a vintage Triumph motorcycle and, though neither of them wants it, their attraction is immediate.
Jill has a very full, complicated life. She’s got an opportunity to make the U.S. Olympic equestrian team, she’s a vet student just finished with her second year, and she’s a popular riding instructor.
She doesn’t have time to fall for a smart, handsome, Southern drifter with a background full of holes and some kind of secret he isn’t willing to share. But fall for him she does. And as she falls deeper in love with a man who seems good to the bone except … her priorities begin to change.
By the time she’s ready to give up her biggest dream for Chase, she finds out by accident what he’s been hiding. He’s lied to her all summer, and lying is the one thing she can’t abide.
In the end, Chase has to dig deep to find courage to tell the whole truth about his life as a doctor in Memphis and the tragedy that made him run from it. And Jill has to dig even deeper to learn–and understand–what true love really means.
What is it that you love about this book, and in particular your hero and heroine?
I love my hero Chase because he’s such a strong man and an everyday hero who’s in such a vulnerable place. As a doctor from inner city Memphis, he’s performed miracles in his community–but one fatal mistake broke his confidence and his will. He’s an honest man of integrity reduced to living a lie. And sometimes I want to shake him and tell him to stop hiding and grow up, but he needs a very special someone to help heal him.
I adore my heroine Jill because she is just plain a good heart. She’s talented and on her way to great things, but she’s also the girl you want as your best friend because you know she’ll have your back no matter what. And, she has the capacity to love and understand Chase, but she’s got her vulnerabilities, too.
The other thing I had the best time with in this book are the crazy secondary characters. Robert McCormick, a crotchety old farmer, is hilarious and loveable. Thirteen-year-old twin sisters, Becky and Jamie Barnes were such fun to write–one sullen, one sunny. And then there’s the unusual dog, Angel, who’s somehow always exactly where she needs to be.
What is your favourite part of the writing process? Is it creating characters, world-building or is it typing The End?
I love creating the characters. They are almost always the first to show up asking me to write them a story. They generally tell me their names pretty quickly, and I have a good idea of who and what they are at the moment the story starts. What’s more difficult is learning where they came from, what formed them, and what they really want out of life. But, finding out my characters’ goals and then weaving them into the story is what’s fun about writing. The story is, after all, about the hero and heroine–everything else is just layering.
I will tell you what my least favorite part of writing is–coming up with a title. I’m not talented at that at all. I like simple, gentle titles that lend themselves better to women’s fiction type stories. (“Rescued by a Stranger” was originally “Angelwings.”) I’m grateful to have a fabulous editor (Tessa Woodward at Avon) who definitely knows her way around naming a book!
Who is your writing superhero? Why?
Without question it’s LaVyrle Spencer. She’s no longer writing, much to her fans’ sorrow, but in the 80s and 90s she was definitely the Queen of Romance. She was not the first author I ever read, but she was the first who made her books so alive, so realistic, so fun and poignant at the same time, that I knew I wanted to evoke those same feelings in readers some day.
Outside of writing, what do you do to relax?
My husband and I love to hike. We took a dream hiking trip to England last summer and walked 192 miles from the Irish Sea to the North Sea in 16 days. It was hard, it was stunning, it was one the most spiritual experiences I’ve ever had. And it was invigorating and a little life-changing.
I also love to quilt. I don’t get to work on it as often as I’d like, but it’s a completely different kind of creating from writing, and I love watching beautiful pieces of fabric turn into works of art. It’s totally relaxing.
What’s next for you?
I’m working on a third book in my series about fictional Kennison Falls, MN. Those who read “Rescued by a Stranger,” will meet David Pitts-Matherson, the very proper British transplant to Minnesota who runs a large, prestigious riding stable. Book #3 will be David’s story, all about what happens when his quiet, small-town world is thrown into chaos by Rio Montoya, an inner-city girl with fiery red hair, six tattoos, gang trouble, and a heart of gold.
I’m also plotting a novella for Kennison Falls’s taken-for-granted handyman Dewey Mitchell. Dewey shows up in all the books, always willing to put himself out for his town–he needs his own wonderful heroine!
Thank you so much for stopping by My Written Romance today, Lizbeth. It’s been a pleasure having you here!
Lizbeth Selvig is offering a paperback copy of Rescued by a Stranger to one lucky winner as part of the blog tour celebration!
Simply fill out the Rafflecopter form provided below for your chance to be entered.
Here’s a little bit more about Lizbeth!
Lizbeth Selvig lives in Minnesota with her cradle-robbing husband and a border collie that inspired the character Dug (“Squirrel!”) in the Disney movie Up. After working as a journalist and editor and raising an equine veterinarian daughter and a talented musician son, Liz entered and won RWA’s Golden Heart® contest in 2010 with her contemporary romance The Rancher and the Rock Star. In her spare time, she loves to hike, quilt, read, horseback ride, and play with her nearly twenty four-legged grandchildren.
Where can you find Lizbeth on the web?
You can learn more about Lizbeth on her website http://www.lizbethselvig.com.