Guest author: TL Shaefer

Bio: As TL Schaefer I write contemporary romantic mysteries with a witchy theme and paranormals. I just love taking something as straightforward as a mystery or romantic suspense and adding the woo-woo world in.

As Keira Ramsay, I write the hot stuff J.

Why in the world did I do this whole split personality thing? Because I NEVER want to confuse my readers with the content they’ll be getting. Yeah, my hot stuff is seriously plot-based, but it’s going to be much more explicit than my TL Schaefer work. Conversely, if you want a mystery or fast-paced romantic suspense that has *some* sex, but not until the relationship has fully developed, then TL Schaefer is probably more your style.

1. What made you decide to become a writer? I had a story that just wouldn’t get out of my head.  I actually wrote my first book when I was 15, and it’s now buried in a place no one will ever find.

2. What advice would you give an aspiring author? Write every day.  I find myself disregarding my own advice sometimes as life overwhelms, and have to smack myself in the noggin.
3. How long have you been writing professionally?  15 years, though it’s been off and on.
4. What is your process from “new idea” to “The end!”?  I’m a pantser, so I just kind of spew my ideas out of my fingertips and onto the page.  I have started plotting a smidge as I get about halfway through the book though.  It takes me that long to get to know my characters and what motivates them.  By the time I hit ¾ of the way through, I’ll do a re-read to make sure I’m not missing something when it comes to character development and the plot arc.  Because I’m in and out of the body of the story so much as I write, by the time I’m done, it’s usually ready to go to my critique partner and then my beta readers. That strategy doesn’t fall in line with the “just write the book” premise, but it’s served me well through 5 full-length books as TL Schaefer and 7 novellas as Keira Ramsay.

5. What do you do for fun when you are not writing? Gardening, reading and fixing up our 100+ year old Colonial.  Yes, I AM that much of a geek J On the tube I’m a not-so-secret Superanatural fan girl, and will watch Bones and Firefly whenever I’m not sighing over the Winchesters.  Netflix is a bad, bad thing
6. Do you write full-time or part-time? I write part time—my day job is as a contingency planner for the DoD, so it’s nice to come home and turn to truly creative pursuits
7. Please list website or blog site if you have them.

8.  So, what is your new book about?   Shoot to Thrill is the 2nd book in the CASI series (the first is Behind Blue Eyes) and Shoot-to-Thrill-ebook-web (200x300)centers on FBI Special Agent Arin Thomas, and her discovery of a world she didn’t believe existed.

The Colorado Academy for Superior Intellect (CASI) …only the best and the brightest may attend…and only if they possess a Talent the Meece Foundation deems of value. Founded in the late sixties, the Academy is the brainchild of Hugh Meece, pharmaceutical groundbreaker…and CASI is its shining jewel. Their motto: Exploring the last frontier…the human mind.

Special Agent Arin Thomas always gets her man, but when she embarks on a personal mission to uncover the details behind her best friend’s death, she discovers a world she’s never even imagined. A world where extrasensory powers are exploited, and where her badge makes her a big, shiny target.

Dr. Jonah Summers would be more than happy to run the Colorado Academy for Superior Intellect (CASI) if only people would stop shooting at him. But that’s a pointless wish when someone with a bottomless bank account and a direct line to Russian special forces has CASI and everyone connected to it in the crosshairs.

Arin and Jonah find themselves dodging a merciless killer with a hidden agenda while trying to fight their own attraction. It’s only a matter of time before one of them has to Shoot to Thrill in order to kill—or be killed.

Here’s a taste:  I stepped out of my SUV and straightened the pencil skirt and trim jacket I’d donned in deference to my cover.  In six years with the Bureau, I’d never worn such a ridiculous costume.  My duties, even when I’d been a forensic accounting cube monkey, tended more toward slacks and flats or Rockports, not the pastel pink nightmare I sported nor the ridiculous strappy stilts masquerading as shoes I teetered on.  I looked like a freakin’ brunette Barbie Doll.  I’d even straightened my hair.

It was humiliating.  Then again, this wasn’t an assignment.  It was personal.  This was for Wes. Something twisted inside me at the thought, actually made me rub a hand over my heart.  I was such a mess.  I blew out a breath and pushed my shoulders back, put some steel in my spine.  I could do this.  I would do this.

9. Writing can be such an isolated enterprise. Yet, I’m sure there are people who have helped or guided or inspired you along the way to becoming a published author. Could you tell us about one of them and how they helped you? Without question my critique partner, Jennifer Mason.  We’ve been together for over a decade (OMG, I can’t believe I just typed that), through good times and bad, the lows of writer’s block and the highs of winning awards.  She always calls me out when I’m being lazy, and knows me well enough to push me to be a better writer with every book.

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