Susan May Warren: The Inside Scoop!

Susan May Warren

 

 

The Inside Scoop!

 

Susan May Warren

and her romantic suspense

Where There’s Smoke

SDG Publishing

*******

I grew up in…

Beautiful Minnesota!  I love the four seasons, and I don’t mind the cold, so it was a fantastic place to grow up. We spent summer hiking, canoeing and fishing, and the winters skiing and ice skating.  I’m sure that’s where I developed my love for epic adventure.

I was inspired to write my first published novel by…

Every summer my family headed north to a tiny tourist town in the tip of Minnesota. We had a cabin there, and we’d use that as our home base to canoe and hike in the north woods. I even met my husband there, at a wilderness camp! So, when I thought about the setting of my first series, I wanted it to be someplace I loved—so I created a town based very much on this northern hamlet and called it Deep Haven.

As for the subject matter—that was easy. What if you met and fell in love with your favorite author, but didn’t know it?  I cast a story about an avid reader who opens a bookstore.  However, she needs help and she hires, without knowing it, her favorite author, under the radar as a handyman.  It’s a fun story about the happily ever after we find without even realizing it.  It was called, appropriately, Happily Ever After and won a number of award and landed on the best-seller list. (so that was fun!)  50 books later…

The books that have most influenced my life are…

I am a HUGE fiction fan, so the top of my list are all the books by Dee Henderson and Francine Rivers, as well as Robin Lee Hatcher. One of the non-fiction books that greatly influenced me was a book called Hinds Feet on High Places, as well as a little known book by Edith Schafer called The Hidden Art of Homemaking (not about being a homemaker, but learning how to bloom where you are planted).  It greatly influenced my thinking about my role as wife, mother, missionary and writer.  (taught me that my art started in the home, and grew from there).

My biggest challenge when writing is…

Cooking and cleaning when I’m on deadline. :)  Good thing my husband is an awesome cook!  No, really, I love working in a sort of vortex of creativity, so when I am fast-drafting, I forget everything but writing  (I do try and go out and take a walk occasionally, however).  The good part is that I get the story out pretty quickly.  The bad part is that when I rise from my chair and look around, the laundry is overflowing, there is no food in the house and the house is under a layer of dust!

One of my favourite authors is… 

I love Rachel Hauck’s beautiful stories. She’s really a poet/storyteller, and consider her writing to be like eating dessert. Yum!  I am also a fan of Deeanne Gist and Siri Mitchell for their historical writing.  Melissa Tagg is a new favorite for her contemporary romance voice, and for deep stories, Beth Vogt is one of my go-tos. I also love Lisa Jordan, who writes for Love Inspired. She writes wonderful romances. And for action, I am a Ronie Kendig addict! There are so many excellent new writers out there that I am just getting to know. Lacy Williams, Betsy St. Amant, Patricia Bradley— I don’t have enough room to answer this question. :)

If I wasn’t a writer, I would be…

An event planner.  I love creating fantastic, meaningful events for people.

The superhero talent I would love to have is…

Flying.  I would be a skydive junkie if I had the money.

Where There's Smoke

She’s a smokejumper afraid of fire…

Kate Burns is a legendary smoke jumper, known for her courage and willingness to risk everything to get the job done. Only she has a secret, one she won’t admit to anyone.

He can’t forget the love they once shared…

Supervisor Jed Ransom commands the Jude County Smoke Jumpers with a reputation as a calm, level-headed leader. Kate is the only one who’s ever gotten under his skin.

They must face the flames together…

A raging wildfire in the mountains of Montana brings Kate and Jed together to train up a new team of jumpers. Suddenly, they must face the past they’ve been running from and the secrets that keep them apart. When an arsonist goes after their team, Kate and Jed must face their deepest fears—and learn to rely on each other as they fight a blaze that could destroy them all.

In this first book of the Montana Fire: Summer of Fire trilogy, Kate and Jed are about to discover that where there’s smoke, there just might be a chance to start again.

My latest novel can be described by these 5 adjectives…

Thrilling, romantic, fun, swoon-worthy, adventurous.

My main character is… 

Jed Ransom is the crew boss for the Jude County Smokejumpers.  Dark-haired and from Montana, with the slightest western drawl, no one can read a fire like Jed.  He takes his responsibility to train and protect his smokejumpers very seriously—and not just because he’s filling the shoes of his mentor who died a year ago (along with 7 other wildland firefighters) in a flashover, but because joining his team is the woman he’s always loved, and can’t forget…Kate Burns.  A fellow smokejumper, he’s deeply afraid she’ll get killed on his watch. And he’ll do anything to keep that from happening.

My main character resembles….

Taylor Kinney :)

A previously unknown fact about this novel is…

I started noodling on this series about 10 years ago when I visited Montana’s smokejumper training base in Missoula.  I trapped a poor smokejumper for about 3 hours and made him tell me everything he knew about how it felt to be a smokejumper. I’ve been researching ever since, developing the team and waiting for the right time to tell the stories of the Jude County Smokejumpers.

My story’s spiritual theme is…

How do you love someone who is constantly risking their lives?

While writing this novel I was challenged by…

In my personal life, my son was joining the Navy, and knowing he was going to face danger made the theme of this story very real. God took me to a place where I could see that I just had to trust in God’s faithfulness, every day.

The title was chosen by…

ME!  I have had this title in my head since the day I stepped on that Missoula base.

As an author, the hardest scenes for me to write are… 

The faith scenes. I need to get them right without sounding preachy.  I have a tendency to overwrite and then cut and hone in the rewrite/editing process.

The story I’m currently working on is…

A Christmas story about the Jude County Smokejumpers—Oh, the Weather Outside is Frightful.  It’s for inclusion in a collection called Candy Cane Kisses, and is just a short story (about 100 pages) but a very fun novella that asks the question:  how do we survive the storms in life?

You may not know this about me, but I…

Am a grandma!  And this year I’m getting my SCUBA certification.

If I could be a character in any novel, I would want to be…

Gilly, my pilot and the heroine of book #3 in the Summer of Fire Trilogy, Burnin’ For You!

Thank you for having me, Rel!  This has been fun!!

You are most welcome, Susie! And by the way, I loved this story – look for my review soon.

Relz Reviewz Extras
All Things Susie May @ Relz Reviewz
Visit Susie’s website and blog
Buy from Amazon: Where There’s Smoke

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One Response to Susan May Warren: The Inside Scoop!

  1. Loved this interview and can’t wait for Oh, the Weather Outside is Frightful! Loved this book and am anxiously waiting for the next 2. I’ve been reading & rereading your books for years, but I can’t believe your kids are old enough to have children themselves!! And to join the Navy!!! Thanks for sharing!

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