Friday, March 18, 2011

FEATURED AUTHOR: Ruthie Robinson

Ruthie Robinson resides in Austin, TX with her husband and two teenage children. She holds a bachelors degree in economics from Clark College and a master’s degree in economics from the University of Texas in Austin (Hook em horns!). She worked for more than a decade in the banking industry before turning her love of stories into a second career.

How did you start out your writing career?

I took up writing as a hobby and through the course of completing my first book, entered the Genesis Press writing contest and was fortunate enough to win.

What did you learn while writing this book?

That writing is something that I enjoy.

What did you hope to accomplish with this book?

I think love looks different for everyone, depending on who you are and what you've been through. Some of us are strong and ready to tackle love when it comes. We can receive and accept it without any problems. For others of us, it’s a bit more difficult. We have issues that get in our way. So with this book, I wanted to showcase a person who believes in love, but who is afraid of the risk associated with loving and the sometimes loss of loved ones—A person who is less willing to give love a chance again.

Katrina finds in Will, the hero, a person who can see behind her defenses and loves her just the way she is, quirks and insecurities, doubts, old hurts and fears, all of it. He gives her the support and assurances that she seeks while he pushes her to step outside of her comfort zone and learn to live with the risks that are inherent in living. This was in many ways my own story.

Which character did you have the most fun writing about?

Katrina. I thoroughly enjoyed making her different, funny, and filled with quirks.

What has surprised you most about becoming a published author?

I am most surprised at becoming a published author. I’m thankful, pleased, excited, but surprised nonetheless.

What aspect of writing do you love the best, and which do you hate the most?

I love the freedom that writing provides to “make up stuff” to shape the outcome of events.
I don’t care for rewriting and editing but I’ve learned that it’s necessary in order to tell the best story.

What are three things you wish you’d known before you reached where you are now?

I wish I’d known about the ins-and-outs of the publishing process.
I wish I’d known that the process is very lengthy and requires a high degree of patience.
I wish I’d known to trust my instincts.

Can you give us one do and one don’t for those aspiring to be a writer?

Do write what you want to read.
Don't let others discourage you.

What one thing about writing do you wish other non-writers would understand?

I don’t have an answer for that one. The whole process still feels new to me.

Can you tell us a little about winning the Genesis Contest?

I'd decided to write Reye's Gold in the summer of 2008. I was looking for something to do with my time, in preparation for my impending empty nest. I really hadn't given much thought to what would follow. I just wrote the story. I’ve purchased books for Genesis Press before and I check their website periodically, which is how I found out about the contest. I then spent more than a few weeks debating with myself about submitting it. I had plenty of angst as a first time writer as to whether my story was good enough. Anyway, per the website’s request, I submitted the first two pages, and later the first three chapters. I was thrilled to have been selected.

When you're not writing, what do you like to do in your spare time?

I hang out with my husband and children—read, watch movies, travel and hang out with friends when I can.

What do you do to interact with your readers?

Most have contacted me via my website and I try to respond.

Our theme for this month is Resources On The Net. What are your favorite resources on the net.

You Tube so far. It was extremely useful for research with Steady on gardening.

Oprah always asks, What do you know for sure?

I know that love is the answer.
I know that the greatest of these…is love.
I know that God is Love.

Can you give us a sneak peek of your next book?

Lights Out is the story of Piper and Joe. Joe was introduced in my first book, Reye’s Gold. When the book opens, Joe is raising his nephew, Shane. Reye has started her non-profit and she and Stephen are still apart of Joe's life.

Joe meets Piper, a coffee shop owner, who has been asked by her father to take care of her two half-sisters, while he tries to save his third marriage.

Piper and Joe join forces to take care of their charges, and we follow along with them as they find their HEA.
How can readers get in contact with you? (mail, email, website)



Katrina Jones is Hampton Heights' reigning gardening queen, leading the city to three consecutive gardening competition championships. As she prepares for the next upcoming competition, she finds out that her spot has been given to Will Nakane, the new eco-friendly kid on the block. Swayed by his home's sustainable construction and adjacent Japanese-inspired backyard garden, the committee taps Will for what they hope is another victory, with Katrina's assistance, putting her in an even more awkward spot since she had tried her womanly charms on him with little success at a recent New Years Eve party.

Swallowing her pride and recognizing that she doesn't hold the required qualifications to be a filly in his stable of beauties, Katrina agrees to help Will. Like the flowers she so dearly loves, Katrina begins to blossom before Will's eyes, exposing a kind of beauty he had yet to find in a female companion. As Will's interest and desire in her increases, Katrina fights the same urges, worried that a relationship between them could never work out.

Will's persistence pays off, and they eventually bring their friendship to the next level, but their love is threatened by Katrina's insecurity, created by a childhood filled with abandonment, loneliness and a feeling of unworthiness. Through compassion, determination and love, Will proves to Katrina that their love can steady any storm.

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