Leeann Betts writes contemporary suspense, while her real-life persona, Donna Schlachter, pens historical suspense. She has released six titles in her cozy mystery series, By the Numbers, with Petty Cash releasing in December. In addition, Leeann just released her first Christmas-themed romantic suspense, In Search of Christmas Past.
What’s the hardest part of writing romantic suspense?
Leann: I think for me the hardest part is making sure there are equal parts romance and suspense. I don’t have a problem writing suspense—it’s the romance that always gets me. I usually come up with the suspense plot first, and then spend a lot of time trying to figure out how to weave the romance in.
When do you find time to write?
Leann: I don’t find time—I make time. I am blessed to not have to work outside the home, and I’m married to my biggest supporter, but that doesn’t mean I’m not busy. But I am very badge-oriented (read goal-oriented or project-oriented), so I give myself a deadline and stick with it. I think of every month as National Novel Writing Month.
How do you connect with your characters?
Leann: I tend to do it the hard way—I write about two chapters of backstory, then I end up going back, writing down what I discovered to use somewhere else in the story, then start my story where it really begins.
Current book: In Search of Christmas Past
Can Grace and Luke solve uncover the truth about their real feelings, or will their differences in goals and faith drive them apart?