Saturday, June 28, 2014

WHAT’S ROMANTIC SUSPENSE?


Congratulations to "Janet K", the winner in Marsha's giveaway. Thank you to all who participated!

When I began this writing journey almost 7 years ago now, sometimes I’d have contest judges say, “Your book’s in the wrong category. Why don’t you try mainstream, or women’s fiction?” Well, I took their advice, rotating between those and romantic suspense, sometimes finalling, sometimes not. One time, the same entry finalled and bombed in two different contests! Loved that one because it illustrates how subjective is the business of reading and writing. What follows is strictly “IMHO!” So take it with a shake of salt and pepper. :)

There’s no one answer to explain romantic suspense. It’s more of a continuum along which various writers and readers find themselves. On the far end of the line, you’ll probably find less violence, sweeter romance, less complex plots. On the opposite end of the line, you might find more blood, gore, murders, gruesome serial killers, psychological terror, graphic sex, maybe more complex plots.

Obviously in between those extremes, you’ll find all variations of romantic suspense novels. There is no right or wrong here, folks. Just differences along the continuum. One of the things I love about writing and reading is the variety that means whatever our preferences are for reading or writing, we can find it. As a reader, I need to have both the romance and the suspense. I don’t want either without the other. Again, that’s my preference. Some folks don’t want those two combined. 

In my own books, you’ll find stories involving characters in their 40’s and 50’s, violence and murders (but not grossly bloody), you’ll find good sex scenes according to one fan, but not enough for her taste. :) (Remember it’s all subjective.) Parts are scary and gave bad dreams to one reader. (She admitted to not being regular reader of romantic suspense.) I hope you’ll find a good emotional ride that will bring you a happily ever after, but along the way, you’re not sure how I’ll pull that off. :)

Below are the blurb and an excerpt for my second book and most recent release TRUTH BE TOLD from MuseItUp Publishing. I hope you enjoy, and I hope you’ll stop by my blog on Thursday. I’ll be sharing my recent experience at RomCon 2014 in Denver. Come find me on Facebook, personal and Author page and Twitter.

Giveaway: 
Comment here for a chance to win an e-copy in format of your choice of TRUTH BE TOLD.

BLURB
An Atlanta SWAT member visiting her family in Fort Worth at Christmas wants to stop the person blackmailing her father. Teaming with her brother and his former homicide detective partner to discover the truth, she hadn’t expected to fall in love. 

EXCERPT 
“Dad, glad it’s just you.” Meg’s voice wasn’t as strong as she intended. Her father didn’t respond. Didn’t he hear her? He threw a crumpled paper across the room, and then he sank into the chair behind his desk. His head cradled between his hands. 

Adrenalin kicked through her system shooting lightning spikes down her arms. “Dad, is something wrong?” Again, no response. Meg moved further into the study. The pipe smoke smell dimly registered. Was he having a heart attack? She stopped in front of his desk. “Dad?” Almost shouted the word.

“What?” He raised his head, but his gaze darted around the room.

Didn’t he recognize her? 

“Meg?” He shoved his hair off his forehead and dragged in a breath. “When did you arrive?” He asked in a voice tight with strain. His gaze never connected with hers.

Not a heart attack. Thank God. She let out a huff of air. “A while ago. Are you all right?”

Her father placed his hands on the desk and straightened into the ramrod posture she’d seen all her life. 

“Everything’s fine.”

He used the same word Meg did when things were the opposite of all right.
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BIO
Marsha R. West, a retired elementary school principal, is also a former school board member and theatre arts teacher. She writes “Romance, Suspense, and Second Chances. Experience Required.” Her heroes and heroines, struggling with life and loss, are surprised when they discover second chances at love.
          Marsha lives in Texas with her supportive lawyer husband. They’ve raised two daughters who’ve presented them with three delightful grandchildren. 
 Her first published book, VERMONT ESCAPE, was e-released by MuseItUp Publishing in the summer of 2013. She’s sold a third book to MIU. In SECOND CHANCES, the hero, Mike Riley, played a supporting role in VERMONT ESCAPE. SECOND CHANCES is the first of a planned series about four women who met when they were kids at summer camp. It’s scheduled for e-release in winter 2014/2015.

Giveaway ends 11:59pm EST June 29th. Please supply your email in the post. You may use spaces or full text for security. (ex. jsmith at gmail dot com) If you do not wish to supply your email, or have trouble posting, please email maureen@justromanticsuspense.com with a subject title of JRS GIVEAWAY to be entered in the current giveaway. US postal addresses only.

22 comments:

  1. Perfect description of the many different kinds of romantic suspense! Great book... good luck and many sales!

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    1. Hey, Jerrie. Thanks for stopping by. It took me a while to realize the continuum thing. When I began I thought there was only one kind. Live and learn.

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  2. It's true.....romantic suspense covers a wide range of stories. I love a book that keeps you on the edge of your seat, makes you care what happens to the characters and keeps you guessing how they will ever find their happy ever after. Congrats on your book. Hope to read it soon.
    grandmabkr at yahoo dot com

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    1. Hey, Brenda. You've nailed it. That what we all want to read and as writers hope we keep you on the edge of your seat just sure we can't pull it off. :) Thanks so much for stopping by. Let me know what you think of the book.

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  3. You are a new author to me, I would love to win...I love Romantic Suspense! Thank you for the chance!

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    1. Hey, LS. Well, I'm so excited. Love to meet readers who don't yet know me or my books yet. Good luck on the contest and thanks so much for stopping by.

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  4. I honestly had no idea what romantic suspense was until I started reading your first book, Vermont Escape. I'm partway through it and really enjoying the ride! Bonus: I've discovered a new genre that I enjoy reading. :)

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    1. Hey, Heather. I'm so glad you're enjoying Vermont Escape. It and TBT are true stand alone novels. The third book that MIU will release winter 2015 is the first in a series. The hero in that book, SECOND CHANCES, is a supporting character in VE. Can you guess which one? Thanks so much for stopping by and commenting.

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    2. I can't guess yet, but I'll definitely keep an eye out for hero material as I continue to read VE.

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    3. Thanks, Heather. :) He nearly took over the book at one point. I told him if he'd back off, I'd give him his own book. Only time that's ever happened. . LOL

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  5. congrats Marsha on the new release! This sounds awesome ;) Thanks for sharing!

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  6. Hey, Erin. Thank you. The second is even a better feeling than the first. More real, you know. And when I got the contract for the third book coming out in Feb, 2015...well, like getting the gold ring. LOL Thanks for stopping and commenting.

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  7. Nice blurb

    bn100candg at hotmail dot com

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  8. Hey, bn100. Glad you like the blurb. Thanks so much for stopping by.

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  9. I've read romance novels for years. Historical, western, paranormal romance stories. Now I'm in love with romantic suspense. I love the combo of romance and excitement from intrigue and suspense. It gives the romance a "kick" start with action of some kind. You are a new-to-me author, Marsha, and I'm grateful for this blog post that introduces you to me. I'm forever looking for romantic suspense reading material and new authors of that genre. Thanks for the post. jdh2690@gmail.com

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    1. Hey, Janice. I'm with you about the combo of romance & suspense. If you get a chance to read either book, hope you'll let me know what you think. Mine are a bit different with the older characters. I figure all of us baby boomers need to know love is still a possibility, so I always write second chances. And don't we all want second chances? Do overs? Good luck with the contest and thanks so much for stopping and commenting.

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  11. Sounds really good! I love a good suspense with romance! I don't mind reading about older characters since I'm older also. I sure don't want to read new adult. Thanks for the chance.

    mlawson17 at Hotmail dot com

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    1. Hey, Martha. That's kind of where I am. I read all those books with the 20 somethings and there are many great ones out there, but now I want to read about someone I can identify with more. Glad yo feel the same way. Thanks so much for stopping for. Good luck with the contest.

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  12. I had not noticed the ages in books. Interesting post. Please enter me in your giveaway.
    Jan

    Janet_kerr@msn.com

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    1. Hey, Janet. Yes, I always try to point that out to folks. I don't want them to get in and go ehh, they're having sex! LOL Younger people tend to think that only for them. Good luck with the contest and hope you get a chance to read my books. If you do, I'd love to hear what you think. Thanks so much for stopping by.

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  13. Hey, Just Romantic Suspense, thanks so much for hosting me over this weekend. It's been really fun. Loved visiting with everyone who stopped by. Will get the book to the winner as soon as I know who it is and what they want. :)

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