Let’s give a big welcome to Susan A. Royal! She’s a new author and we all know how exciting that can be. This an opportunity to get to know her better and, frankly, given her answers, she seems like quite a woman. Here’s Susan:
First, let me thank Heather for allowing me to be here today. It’s been a roller coaster of emotions since I signed a contract with MuseItUp. I’m thrilled to be considered a part of something so exciting. Soon I’ll be knee deep in edits and finding out what my cover art is going to be. But I can’t wait. Until then, I’ve included an unedited excerpt and a little about the book. I hope you enjoy. Please, remember to look for it. Not Long Ago, is a time travel romance due out June, 2012.
1. What is your favorite book?
Three Hearts and Three Lions by Poul Anderson
2. Who is your favorite writer?
My new favorite writers are husband and wife team, Ilona Andrews
3. If the answers to 1 & 2 are different, why?
Three Hearts and Three Lions was one of the first time travel books I ever read, and it blew me away. I’ve read it over and over and never get tired of the story. I’ve just discovered Ilona Andrews. Their books are gritty, sexy, humorous and the characters jump off the page.
4. When and how do you write? (typewriter, Mac, in a café, for four hours each morning, etc?)
At the computer, evenings weekends (I don’t watch much television and my “office” is in the laundry room, so I multi-task. I often work out dialogue or get an idea how to move the story forward while I’m taking a break folding clothes or cooking)
5. In what era do you wish you’d been born?
I’m happy living in this era. But I’d love to be able to travel in time and meet people like Robin Hood, Mark Twain, King Arthur, Merlin to find out if they were anything like I’ve read. I’d also like to be able to witness, up close and personal, some of the great events of history—things like the Battle of Culloden, Lincoln’s assassination, days leading up to America’s independence, Pearl Harbor.
6. Which words or phrases do you most overuse?
Honestly, it changes from book to book. Lately I’ve had a thing about using ‘made their way’. Before that it was ‘just’ and ‘really’ Or I find I’ll use a new word or phrase and like it so much I repeat it unconsciously until I begin to edit.
7. Which talent would you most like to have?
I dabble in a lot of different things, but I’ve always wanted to be able to sing (not just carry a tune) and play an instrument. Since I don’t do either, I get to be audience for my talented family: husband (piano, guitar, singer), my son (guitar, singer) and granddaughter (guitar)
8. What do you consider your greatest achievement?
My husband and I have three children: a realist, an idealist and a romantic. We have the son-in-law and daughter-in-law everyone dreams about having. And we have four grandchildren. All distinct individuals, we are constantly in awe of the things they accomplish and take pride in the small part we’ve played in their lives.
9. Who is your favorite hero of fiction?
That changes from time to time. Tarzan and Flash Gordon were my early heroes. Tarzan, because he lived off the grid, and Flash Gordon, because he got to travel to other planets. Later Mary Stewart let me follow Merlin’s life from his childhood, and I could see why he might have become the man he did. Diana Gabaldon’s characters, Jamie and Claire Fraser, continue to touch my heart with their abiding love. Harry Dresden makes me laugh, with the predicaments he manages to get involved in. There are so many.
10. How would you like to die? With dignity.
I hope I leave this world because it’s my time to go, and not because I gave up. The message I hope to leave is this: Begin every new day with the idea that life is what you make of it. Embrace it. Don’t grieve over what cannot be. Instead, celebrate what you’ve been fortunate to experience.
Not Long Ago, Debut June 2012
Erin has met the man of her dreams, but as usual there are complications. It’s one of those long distance relationships, and Griffin is a little behind the times– somewhere around 600 years.
Erin and her employer, March, are transported to a time where chivalry and religion exist alongside brutality and superstition. Something’s not quite right at the castle, and Erin and March feel sure mysterious Lady Isobeil is involved. But Erin must cope with crop circles, ghosts, a kidnapping and death before the truth of her journey is revealed.
Forced to pose as March’s nephew, Erin finds employment as handsome Sir Griffin’s squire. She’s immediately attracted to him and grows to admire his courage, quiet nobility and devotion to duty. Yet, she must deny her feelings. Her world is centuries away, and she wants to go home. But, Erin can’t stop thinking about her knight in shining armor.
After helping Sir Griffin with his armor the next day, he sent me to saddle Bayard and bring him from the stables. When I returned, he waited just outside his quarters, pacing in front of the door and adjusting his armor. It seemed a little out of character for the man I knew, but I suppose it had to be normal for even a seasoned knight to be a little nervous before just before competing in a tournament.
When Bayard and I came to a stop in front of him, Sir Griffin tucked his helmet under his arm and stood ramrod straight, his armor glinting in the sun. With his eyes like quicksilver against his dark lashes and curly hair and his strong jaw and Roman nose only slightly curved, he brought to mind every story I’d ever read about gallant knights in medieval times. I had to bite my tongue to keep from blurting out how handsome, how perfect he looked.
“–Aaron, have ye not been listening? Twice already I have asked, and ye just stand there gawking at me.”
“Oh, I’m sorry, Sir Griffin. My mind was–elsewhere. What was the question?”
“It has been some time since I have spent so much effort on my appearance.” Things were beginning to come clear. He indicated his clothing. “What I mean–is everything right?”
He’s worried about his appearance? What in hell am I going to say without sounding like some awestruck teenage girl? You look hot? You’ll knock ‘em dead? I could only imagine his reaction. “You are the very image of a proper knight, Sir Griffin. No one at the tournament could even hope to match you.” No way could I tell him he looked so good I wanted to–-well, never mind what I wanted. All I could do was gather up his banner along with the rest of his equipment and get ready to follow him out on the field like a good little squire. Damn it all.
Thanks for dropping by, Susan, and best of luck with your book, Not Long Ago!