Today we welcome Susan Royal, fellow authoress at MuseIt Up. She’s bringing along her fantastical romantic adventures, including her latest new release: Xander’s Tangled Web! To help celebrate she’s giving two lucky commenters a copy of their choice of NOT LONG AGO or IN MY SHADOW. Just share your favorite genre to read with your email, and one of those winners could be you. We’ll announce our lucky comment winners on Wednesday, Oct. 28th, so check back!
While we wait for her latest release to hit shelves in Fall 2015, you can indulge in her books: In My Own Shadow and the first two installments in her time-traveling series, Not Long Ago and From Now On…
Talk about the worst day ever! Lara lets her friend Carrie talk her into a blind date, only it turns out the handsome stranger waiting for Lara after work isn’t Carrie’s cousin after all. And, when they’re chased through a portal to another world, Lara realizes Rhys really is out of this world.
Lyra, her alternate in another dimension, has left clues to the whereabouts of the Book of Secrets that explains the mystery of time travel in Lara’s subconscious. Or so Rhys thinks. Power-hungry telepaths pursuing them will stop at nothing to get it, even if it means breaking Lara’s mind. To complicate matters, Lara gets tangled up in her feelings for Rhys while exploring her connection with Lyra.
With Rhys as her guardian, a bear of a man named Azle to guide her, and the spirit of Lyra haunting her dreams, Lara must find the Book of Secrets before it falls into the hands of those who want its power. Only then can she return to her world safely.
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.
Along with her employer, March, Erin is transported to a time where chivalry and religion exist alongside brutality and superstition. Something is not quite right at the castle, and they are certain 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, she 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.
From there, the story could have gone anywhere. Turns out it did. I never expected it to become a series, but my daughter insisted the story wasn’t finished, and she was right.
From Now On takes up where the first book left off. Some of my favorite characters are back. Arvo: the tall gangly young man with a disreputable shock of red hair who becomes Erin’s good friend and confidant. Sir Edevane: Griffin’s fellow knight and friend. Kat: Griffin’s feisty little sister.
Griffin travels across centuries to find Erin, but before they can begin their new life together, he’s sent on a mission to a strange island. When he doesn’t return, Erin assembles a group of his friends to search for him. Followed by his strong-willed sister, Kateryn, they travel to Swansea and secure passage with the notorious Captain Akin.
She discovers firsthand how the island has earned its dark reputation when she battles freakish weather, encounters a race of little people known as “Prowlies” and experiences ghosts of the long departed. Even worse, she discovers there are “ley lines” crossing the island’s mountain peak, creating all sorts of strange phenomena. Yet these obstacles pale in comparison to the secrets she uncovers while trying to rescue the man she loves.
If you love a time travel adventure with a twist (and a love story) and haven’t read Not Long Ago, please do. You can continue Erin and Griffin’s story with From Now On. As for what’s going to happen to them in Book 3? It’s too soon to tell, but here’s a hint. As the relationship between the two love birds grows, they’ll have more obstacles to overcome. In addition, you’ll likely see something about the caves in Wales, blood moons and ghost stories.
Now that we’ve added some great titles to our TBR piles, time to grill Susan…
As children we tend to have an idea of what we want to be by the time we’re ten. Before you decided to pursue the artistic dream of being a writer, what did you want to be and why?
My list was lengthy: a singer (love making music) a comedian (love to make people laugh) a teacher (not too sure about that one)and an artist (I love drawing and painting)
If your character(s) came with a warning label, what would it say?
Sarcastic, Impatient, persistent, stubborn, independent, quirky
If you turned your laptop/computer/pen/typewriter (yes, some of still use these!) over to your character(s), how would they describe you?
Sarcastic, impatient, persistent, stubborn, independent, quirky.
We all have favorite characters, either main or secondary, and there are always bits and pieces of them we don’t share with our readers, but keep close to our hearts. Choose your favorite from your cast of characters and tell us a couple of things that you haven’t shared in your books/writing.
It’s no secret the tailor’s son, Arvo, has a thing for Erin, even though he knows how she feels about Griffin. He’s come to terms with the situation, but he’s searching for the same kind of relationship they have, and he’ll do just about anything to get it.
Personally, I tend to be a bit on the introverted side so the thought of being in the actual presence of one of my favorite writers makes my heart race, my knees shake and tangles my tongue (yes classic fan girl behavior). Who could reduce you to such a level and how do you imagine your initial meeting?
I would love to have sit down and have a conversation with Ray Bradbury. I’ve long admired the way he painted pictures with his words. He made me want to live in Greentown, Illinois and be friends with everyone who lived there.
Growing up, what was your favorite book, comic, game or movie and did you create a character/player that might resemble you?
I was Jane in all the Tarzan movies, Peter Pan’s Wendy, Jo in Little Women and Dr. Watson to Sherlock Holmes.
Many writers have that first novel which will never see the light of day. Out of curiosity, do you have one stashed somewhere?
I had the idea for a novel in high school. After many false starts and revisions, I finally finished it a few years ago and I’m happy to say In My Own Shadow ended up being a lovely adventure. Inquiring minds want to know: what was your first attempt at writing and how old were you? When I was 6 or 7, I wrote a book about our vacation, complete with illustrations, bound with a red ribbon. In fact, I still have it.
Whether we’re plotters or pantsers (outlines not needed), creating our stories takes us on very memorable journeys. Sometimes we may be part way through before we realize some major aspect of our story is just not working (plot, character, setting). Have you ever hit this sharp, pointy snag and if so, how did you escape? We’re you battered and bruised or a bloody mess?
I’m a pantser who does a little plotting, so it happens at least once with every story I write. I get about 60,000 words into it and wonder what in h-e-double-toothpicks I’m doing. What was I thinking? Where do I go from here? How do I finish this thing? I’m completely overwhelmed. I have to go back to the beginning and read it like a reader and not an editor. Eventually things click, and I realize how the story plays out. The rest is history.
What’s the one genre you won’t ever try and why?
I’m not much for writing contemporary pieces, unless it’s something like urban fantasy. My time travel starts out in the present, but not for long. I’d much rather write about some other time, some other place in the universe.
What is some of the best advice you were ever given?
Once I was crying on a fellow writer’s shoulder, whining about a plot hole in my WIP big enough to drive a truck through and he said, You’re the author. It’s your story. So fix it. You can change it and make it whatever it needs to be. And he was right.
What is the best advice you can share with others?
Keep writing, keep learning, keep submitting and never ever give up
Hang tight as we have Susan step up and face our bullet list. Ready? Aim…fire!
Blades, guns, fists or feet?
All of the above, along with explosive devices
Favorite Fairy Tale of all time?
Three titles and their authors sitting on your nightstand/bookcase/table/floor waiting to be read?
Magic Breaks by Ilona Andrews, Blue Lily, Lily Blue by Maggie Stievater, The Shadow’s Edge by Jami Gray (These are only a few on my TBR list)
Greatest one liner of all time?
Don’t quit your day dream.
Sarcastic witticism, Southern sweetness or Geeky disdain?
Strangest item currently taking up space in your writing cave?
A gnome from the Isle of Man
Favorite supernatural creature?
Big thank you to Susan for taking time to come visit.
Born in west Texas and raised in south Texas, Susan makes her home in a 100-year-old farmhouse in a small east Texas town. She shares it with a ghost who likes to harmonize with her son when he plays guitar.
She is married and the mother of six (she counts her children’s spouses as her own) and five grandchildren who are all unique and very special. Her family is rich with characters, both past and present. Her grandmother shared stories of living on a farm in Oklahoma Territory with three sisters and three brothers and working as a telephone operator in the early 20th century. Her father told her about growing up in San Antonio in the depression, and she experienced being a teenager during WWII through her mother’s eyes.
When she isn’t writing, she works as a secretary in education and does her best to keep up with her grandchildren. Music and painting are two of her passions. She is a firm believer in getting what you want without breaking the bank. She loves to bargain shop anywhere there’s a sale and began repurposing long before it was popular. She paints, crafts and sews. Her office/craft/sewing room is littered with her latest projects.
Susan loves to take her readers through all kinds of adventures with liberal doses of romance. So far, she’s written two books in her It’s About Time series, Not Long Ago and From Now On. They are time travel adventures with romance about two people who fall in love despite the fact they come from very different worlds. In My Own Shadow is a Fantasy adventure/romance. Out this fall is her YA fantasy, Xander’s Tangled Web. Look for her books at MuseItUp/Amazon/B&N. You can also find Odin’s Spear, one of her short stories featured in a Quests, Curses, and Vengeance anthology, Martinus Publishing, available on Amazon.