Black Creek Burning By R.T. Wolfe
Brianna Chapman learns to handle just about anything. Witnessing the murder of her parents had that effect. Knowing the unsolved arson had been meant for her isn’t as easy to overcome. Instead, she stuffs her guilt soundly into her subconscious through diving into the teaching job she loves by day and the dirt of the landscaping business she owns by night. Her habit of remaining aloof to personal relationships is, well, working.
Will her guilt be as easy to keep buried if the killer comes back to finish the job?
In the midst of juggling a scorched yard, dead animals on her doorstep and her vandalized car, the one thing she didn’t count on was the staggering Nathan Reed. A nationally renowned woodworking artist, Nathan and his two priceless nephews move into the run-down historical house behind her and over Black Creek. They have a canny way of maneuvering around her aloof demeanor and into her heart. Will they still want to be part of her life when they discover she is haunted by past memories and hunted by present dangers?
“I’m not above doing that. You should know that. I can take care of my own car.” Brie turned as she thought of just how she was going to do that, and reached up to pull out a single tea bag and mug. “And there is no you and me. It was just a kiss. Now, we have to move backward for Andy’s sake.” And mine, she thought.
He made his way to her in three long strides, picked her up by the shoulders and plopped her on the kitchen counter, smashing his mouth to hers. Framing the side of her face with one hand, Nathan laced his fingers in her pinned up hair with the other.
She couldn’t think and for the first time in her life let go. Slipping away from her blessed control, she blocked out the possible consequences and surrendered to the now. Her skin nearly ignited from the feel of his body as she pulled him in closer. She held onto his lanky back, his strong arms, feeling his rough hands on her face, in her hair. His mouth and his tongue emptied her mind. She clamped her eyes shut and wanted to stay right there. As he’d done at the midnight hour in her basement, he pulled away as quickly as he took her.
Nathan whispered close to her face, “Just a kiss my ass.”
First of all, let me thank you for having me today on Books and Other Spells. I’m truly honored.
- Where did you get the idea for the novel?
I have to be honest with where I came up with the idea for Black Creek Burning…I have no idea. Sometimes when I’m editing and revising my work I ask myself, “Where did I come up with this?” I blame the characters. They seem to drive the plot all by themselves with me to keep them on the up and up.
- Your title. Who came up with it? Did you ever change your title?
I came up with the title Black Creek. My publisher wanted to add another word and after a few suggestions, we decided on Black Creek Burning…which turned out to be perfect because this book is the first in a trilogy that is now named the Black Creek Trilogy. Each title has a ‘dark’ connotation with goes along with the mysteries twined throughout. Book two, To Fly in Shadows, will debut in February and Dark Vengeance, book three, will follow in July.
- Which came first, the title or the novel?
Wow, I’ve never been asked that question, and I’ve been fortunate enough to have been through a lot of interviews. Here goes the honesty again, my answer is the title. You have me completely scratching my head now. I’ll have to come back later after I go psychoanalyze that one. Okay, I ‘m back. Who cares? J
- Since becoming a writer, what’s the most exciting thing to ever happen to you?
Sometimes I ask crazy questions figuring I’ll get a, ‘no’ and be no worse off than I was. Stevie Nicks, for example, said, ‘no’ when I asked if I could use her lyrics on my book trailer. I was just excited to get an email from Stevie Nicks! (okay, her publicist) LOL However, I’ve been thrilled with all who have agreed to read Advanced Reading Copies (ARCs) of my novels. For Black Creek Burning, I’ve had the 2010 EPIC Award Winner, master gardeners and a talented gal at Sawbridge Studios in downtown Chicago. I’m big on accuracy and authenticity. I want my work to be intelligent and believable. How else will my readers lose themselves in my books? For To Fly in Shadows, I’ve had the folks over at Operation Migration as well as the East Coast Center for Conservation and Biology read ARCs. So exciting!
- What book are you currently reading or what was the last book you read?
I am currently reading The Chase by Nora Roberts. Wow. It’s smart, unique and fascinating.
- What was your first book that you ever wrote (very first one you wrote, not published)?
Black Creek Burning was my first. Seriously. I didn’t originally write it for publication. It was my readers who made me do this. They are ruthless and I’m so lucky to have them.
- What is your writing process?
Steal, cheat and grab any moment I can to squeak out some writing time. I have a notebook I keep with me always, even by my bed when I go to sleep at night. I write on bleachers at my sons’ swim meets, in the car driving all over the Midwest to said meets, in the middle of the night when I can’t sleep. My record is 7 ½ hours in the same seat at a Panera. So fun! My motto is, “You have the right to remain silent, what you say and do might be used in one of my novels.”
- Who are your favorite authors of all time?
I know this is cliché but I am a Nora Roberts fan (freak?). I also love James Patterson and Janet Evanovich…cliché and cliché, but we love what we love.
- At a book signing, do you just sign your name or do you write a note? How do you come up with stuff to say?
I am anxiously awaiting the print version of Black Creek Burning which comes out near the holidays. I could definitely use some suggestions!
- What is something people would be surprised to know about you?
I raise Monarch and Swallowtail caterpillars in the summertime on my kitchen counter. Metamorphosis is truly an amazing thing.
- How do you react to a bad review?
I have an author friend who received three 1 star reviews on Goodreads before her book was even published. Another who had a 2-star review from a reader who said she had too much kissing. There was no kissing in her book. It’s part of the business. I have a pact with an author who is a great friend. She reads my bad reviews and I read hers. If there is something we deem a useful suggestion, we share it with one another, if not we ignore it.
- How did you celebrate the sale of your first book?
The week I received my contract offer from Crimson turned into other publishers wanting my book. It was the craziest week I can remember. I chose to sign with Crimson because they chose me for my book, not because someone else wanted me. After I signed, I did the thing that feeds my inner addiction, I wrote. J
R.T. was born and raised in the Midwest, the youngest of six children. She married at a young age and decided early on she wanted a family herself. With three small boys in tow, she and her husband flipped two houses with R.T. in charge of the landscape design and install. Now, she is rooted in the final home they designed inside and out.
Now that her boys are nearly grown, R.T. spends much of her time on the road traveling from one sporting event to another serving as mom and cheerleader. When at home, she enjoys Pilates, working with her Golden Retriever and digging in the glorious dirt of her landscaping plots.
During one of many busy and restless nights, R.T.’s first novel began to pluck its way onto her laptop. It was a drug, an instant addiction that only grew with time. Moments borrowed and stolen at her laptop are, now, between all of the travel and work and many of those busy, restless nights. After several edits, revisions and versions later R.T.’s first novel, Black Creek Burning, will debut September 24th.