A Conversation With Cathe Swanson
Cathe Swanson lives in Wisconsin, where the long winters are perfect for writing and reading books! Cathe enjoys writing stories with creative plots and eccentric characters of all ages. Her books will make you laugh and make you cry – and then make you laugh again.
What’s the hardest part of writing romantic suspense?
Cathe: Keeping it realistic—or at least plausible. Sometimes, my imagination outruns my brain.
Why do you like writing romantic suspense?
Cathe: In romantic suspense novels, I can explore a character’s entire personality. Romantic suspense plots provide opportunities to reveal not just a character’s strengths, but also their weaknesses, fears and—sometimes—the ugly parts of their human natures. Because I write from a Christian worldview, I have that aspect to develop too, showing how each person’s faith or lack of faith is a primary part of who they are and how they respond to everything in life.
Relationships in romantic suspense novels have an extra layer to them, as the characters interact in dangerous and extreme circumstances. They can be challenging to write, because I also need to bring them into a believable relationship once they resolve the problem and enter “normal life” as a couple.
In romantic suspense, I can create more complex plots. I like to include very funny scenes and eccentric characters, to balance the heartbreaking and scary bits, because that’s how real life is.
How do you pick the location/setting of your romantic suspense novels?
Cathe: I like to use places I am familiar with, but I often set up fictional micro-communities inside of those areas so I can be more creative. Fortunately, we have moved a lot. The Great Lakes collection is set in the Midwest, in a fictional Chicago neighborhood and in the western end of the Upper Peninsula of Michigan, which is not fictional at all. I lived there long enough—and it’s diverse enough—that I can use it without making changes to suit my plot.
What did you want to be as a child (and did that dream come true)?
Cathe: In high school, I wanted to be an occupational therapist, but instead I got married and raised a family. When my interest in occupational therapy was revived 35 years after high school graduation, I went down to the community college. They told me I was too old to start and finish the program, so I went home and made the young hero of “Baggage Claim” an occupational therapy assistant. I live vicariously through my characters.
Current book: Baggage Claim
Dangerous old and new secrets bind a young widower with four lively children, his highly-efficient nanny and a reclusive artist in the Upper Peninsula.
BookBub Author Page: http://www.bookbub.com/authors/cathe-swanson
Amazon Author Page: http://www.amazon.com/author/catheswanson
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