Long and Short Reviews welcomes Katie Ruggle, whose newest book, Hold Your Breath, will be released next week. Leave a comment or ask the author a question for a chance to win a copy (US/Canada only)!
Katie, welcome to Long and Short Reviews! Do you ever wish you were someone else? Who?
Although I’ve occasionally wished for someone else’s writing ability or horse or gun or career or hair, I’ve never actually wanted to be someone else. Everyone’s life has its own hard bits, and I’m pretty satisfied with being me.
What did you do on your last birthday?
Jeez Louise, I don’t even remember… My memory is a sad and deficient thing. Wait! Yes, I do! I baked bread at my day (well, night) job and then had lunch with my (awesome) parents. After that, I did some writing. Since my day (night) job makes me get up very, very early, and I’ve been frantically working on the Search and Rescue series (edit hell has a parking spot with my name on the sign), I have not had the most wild and exciting life. That’s okay, though—I’m writing, so I’m content.
What part of the writing process do you dread?
Reviews. Dreaded, dreaded reviews. Normally, I’m a very easygoing, laid-back person. At the bakery, someone can tell me the bread loaf I just shaped looks like a malformed peanut, and I’ll cheerfully agree (and then reshape it…hopefully not into anything resembling a legume that time). A dance teacher once told me I have no rhythm, and I laughed, shrugged in agreement, and kept dancing. Writing is different. Putting my stories out there makes me vulnerable, easily crushed by someone else’s opinion. A while back, after I spent a sleepless night stewing over a not-so-positive review, I firmly banned myself from all review sites until I can act like an adult. Sometimes I still sneak onto those sites, though…I can’t help myself.
Do you ever suffer from writer’s block? If so, what do you do about it?
No writer’s block yet (fingers crossed)! I’m most productive when I have a set writing appointment every day. Only drastic circumstances can prevent me from writing at that particular time. Also, I’ve learned that I am a definite pantser as far as plotting goes. If I try to work from an outline (or a *cough* publisher’s contract summary), my writing brain shuts down. This is strange, since I’m an ultra-organizer in all other parts of my life. With the books, though, I just let my characters drag me down whatever twisty, thorn-covered plot paths they choose. I’m just along for the ride.
Tell us about your latest release.
Hold Your Breath, out on April 5th (soon!), is the first full-length book in my Search and Rescue series (On His Watch, a free prequel novella, is available now). Set in the remote (and cold!) wilderness of the Colorado Rockies, this book features Louise (Lou) and Callum, members of the dive team who make a grisly discovery during ice-rescue training (hint: the discovery is minus a head). As the two join forces in an attempt to find the killer, they grow closer, and their simmering mutual interest flares to life. Someone’s after Lou, however—someone dangerous. As determined as Callum is to keep Lou safe, the mountains are filled with both four-legged and two-legged predators, and only the toughest survive in this wild place.
In the remote Rocky Mountains, lives depend on the Search & Rescue brotherhood. But in a place this far off the map, trust is hard to come by and secrets can be murder…
As the captain of Field County’s ice rescue dive team, Callum Cook is driven to perfection. But when he meets new diver Louise “Lou” Sparks, all that hard-won order is obliterated in an instant. Lou is a hurricane. A walking disaster. And with her, he’s never felt more alive…even if keeping her safe may just kill him.
Lou’s new to the Rockies, intent on escaping her controlling ex, and she’s determined to make it on her own terms…no matter how tempting Callum may be. But when a routine training exercise unearths a body, Lou and Callum find themselves thrust into a deadly game of cat and mouse with a killer who will stop at nothing to silence Lou—and prove that not even her new Search and Rescue family can keep her safe forever.
About the Author: When she’s not writing, Katie Ruggle rides horses, shoots guns, and travels to warm places where she can SCUBA dive. Graduating from the Police Academy, Katie received her ice-rescue certification and can attest that the reservoirs in the Colorado mountains really are that cold. While she still misses her off-grid, solar- and wind-powered house in the Rocky Mountains, she now lives in Rochester, Minnesota near her family. Website