Name: Lisa Suzanne
Where are you from: Originally from Illinois, and now I live in Arizona
A little about your self `ie your education Family life etc
I have been married to my wonderful husband for eight years. We have a yellow lab and no kids. I teach high school English full time. My Bachelor’s Degree is in English, and I have a Master’s Degree in Education. I come from an amazing family with two wonderfully supportive parents and an older brother.
Fiona: Tell us your latest news?
I just released a new novel, Separation Anxiety, on February 4. I have two current works in progress – one is the final book in the He Feels Trilogy, and the other is a standalone I’m working on.
Fiona: When and why did you begin writing?
I’ve been writing as far back as high school. I’ve just always loved to write!
Fiona: When did you first consider yourself a writer?
I’ve been a writer since high school; I’ve been an author since I hit that PUBLISH button last May.
Fiona: What inspired you to write your first book?
A song inspired How He Really Feels, but I don’t necessarily consider that the first book I’ve ever written – it’s just the first book I published.
Fiona: Do you have a specific writing style?
I always start at the beginning and write all the way through to the end. I occasionally will write a line or two or a snippet if I come up with an idea and I’ll write the story to get to that point.
Fiona: How did you come up with the title?
Titles are my enemy! I have the hardest time coming up with titles. My husband helps me brainstorm, and our nightly walks with our dog have been taken over by plot, titles, characters, etc. I threw out How He Really Feels one night and liked how it was ambiguous (who is the “He”?). I kept coming back to it, and that’s when I knew it was the one. For Separation Anxiety, I asked for titles on my Facebook page, and it was one of the suggestions that I kept coming back to.
Fiona: Is there a message in your novel that you want readers to grasp?
Never give up hope.
Fiona: How much of the book is realistic?
I feel like my books are based in reality. My main characters are usually everyday people who have everyday problems.
Fiona: Are experiences based on someone you know, or events in your own life?
Nope! All of my events are entirely made up.
Fiona: What books have most influenced your life most?
The Great Gatsby, Ordinary People, Fifty Shades of Grey, Something Borrowed
Fiona: If you had to choose, which writer would you consider a mentor?
It’s hard to choose. I’m in several author groups with other authors who I really respect and who have become friends, so I would say all of the authors who are willing to reach out and help each other in all of those groups.
Fiona: What book are you reading now?
Interview with a Master. And I’m also rereading What He Really Feels so I can get details right in the third book of my trilogy!
Fiona: Are there any new authors that have grasped your interest?
I’m always searching for new authors! The newest ones I’ve discovered are M. Pierce, Gail McHugh, Alice Clayton, and Tara Sivec.
Fiona: What are your current projects?
I’m working on the third book in the He Feels Trilogy. I’m writing a book that’s based on a secondary character in Separation Anxiety. And I have another series already written; I’m just editing and debating if it should be two, three, or four books!
Fiona: Name one entity that you feel supported you outside of family members.
I have tons of support from family and friends, although I’ve had to keep my pen name a secret due to my full time job. So I would definitely have to go with my AMAZING street team and my SUPER FANTASTIC PA, Karen!
Fiona: Do you see writing as a career?
I do. I feel like I have two full time jobs – teaching during the day and then writing when I get home from work.
Fiona: If you had to do it all over again, would you change anything in your latest book?
No. I love Jesse Drake and I love everything about Separation Anxiety.
Fiona: Do you recall how your interest in writing originated?
I don’t recall, but I do remember taking a Creative Writing course in high school that helped me develop my love of writing. I think about that class all the time.
Fiona: Can you share a little of your current work with us?
Here’s an excerpt from my most recently released book, Separation Anxiety:
“So, if you’re picky with women, why flavors of the week and not something more permanent?” I asked, knowing my bold statement never would’ve come out of my mouth if I wasn’t already wine drunk.
He shrugged and took a sip of his wine, avoiding eye contact.
“You’re a catch, Jesse. You work with kids. You’re good with wood. You make a mean chicken marsala. You’re hot as hell.”
His eyes snapped sharply up to mine at my last words, and I realized what the hell had slipped out of my mouth just a moment too late.
My face was already flushed from the wine, and I think I might’ve turned purple from embarrassment. I could not believe I just said that.
What the hell was I thinking?
This man was kind enough to extend an invitation for me to stay with him, and I just told him I thought he was hot. Or, more specifically, I told him that I thought he was “hot as hell.”
What. The. Fuck.
Something was wrong with me.
Cue mini-freak out number two for this meal, but this time it was because I was actually freaking out.
I played it off by drinking some more wine, pretending like I hadn’t just said that.
But Jesse didn’t let it slide.
“Hot as hell, huh?” he murmured.
I put my elbows on the table and buried my face in my hands.
“Oh my God. I can’t believe I just said that.”
I felt his hands over mine. He forced my hands from my face, and when I opened my eyes, he was sitting in the chair next to me. He had been stealthy; I hadn’t even heard him move, and suddenly we were nearly nose to nose as he held my wrists in his hands.
“Hot as hell?” he repeated one more time, that dangerous, sexy depth back in his low voice.
“Can we just pretend like you didn’t hear that part?” I whispered, nervous with him so damn close to me, his hands wrapped around my wrists.
He shook his head slowly and arched an eyebrow. “Fuck no, we can’t.”
Fiona: Is there anything you find particularly challenging in your writing?
Just titles. And sometimes there’s pressure with series – people have certain expectations and they want things to end a certain way, and it’s hard to please everybody.
Fiona: Who is your favorite author and what is it that really strikes you about their work?
I have many favorite authors. EL James revolutionized contemporary romance, so I love her. I love Emily Giffin and her stories and how she connects with her fans.
Fiona: Do you have to travel much concerning your book(s)?
I haven’t yet, but I’m attending a signing in Houston in August!
Fiona: Who designed the covers?
Separation Anxiety was designed by Kellie Dennis at Book Cover by Design. How He Really Feels and What He Really Feels were designed by James at humblenations.com.
Fiona: What was the hardest part of writing your book?
Coming up with the title, and editing is hard work, too.
Fiona: Did you learn anything from writing your book and what was it?
I learned a lot about how to file for a divorce in Arizona from writing Separation Anxiety! I think I scared my husband a little, but we’re very happily married!
Fiona: Do you have any advice for other writers?
Stick with it and write what you want to write – don’t worry about what others want you to write.
Fiona: Do you have anything specific that you want to say to your readers?
Thank you to all of you who have left reviews for me and who have supported me!
Fiona: Do you remember the first book you read?
No, but I remember reading a lot of Berenstain Bears when I was little, and I remember my favorite book in fourth grade was Freaky Friday.
Fiona: Other than writing do you have any hobbies ?
I make jewelry and I like to scrapbook, but I don’t have much time for either of those since I published my first novel!
Fiona: What TV shows/films do you enjoy watching?
My favorite TV show is New Girl, and I enjoy watching comedies and Rom Coms.
Fiona: Favorite foods / Colors/ Music
Music: Matchbox Twenty and Maroon 5
Fiona: If you were not a writer what else would you like to have done?
I am a teacher, and I teach writing, so it would’ve still been part of my life. Although I love creativity, so I could see myself as a graphic designer or an interior designer.
Fiona: Do you have a blog/website? If so what is it?