Rachel Puts Debut Author Elizabeth Heiter in the Crosshairs

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I’m so excited today to introduce my friend Elizabeth Heiter to our Kiss and Thrill readers. Elizabeth and I met in 2008 when we were both finalists in Romance Writers of America®’s Golden Heart® contest. She was an early reader of CONCRETE EVIDENCE and I in turn was extremely lucky and got to read HUNTED, which debuts today.

I absolutely loved HUNTED and Elizabeth’s heroine, FBI profiler Evelyn Baine. This book is intense, scary, and fascinating. If you are looking for a book that will keep you up late and take your breath away with the best fight scenes I’ve ever read, this book is for you!

Regular readers of this blog may have noticed I don’t give books star ratings, because I find stars just don’t capture exactly how I feel about a book. So, as is my wont, I needed to come up with a new rating for HUNTED. Only one symbol fully captures the intensity of this book.

HUNTED gets five crosshairs:


So now it is my great pleasure to welcome Elizabeth to Kiss and Thrill!

RG: What published author (any genre) turns you into a total fangirl?  Is there a particular book or is this based on their entire body of work?

EH: I’m going to have to say Suzanne Brockmann.  I was perusing the romantic suspense section at the bookstore one day many years back and came across Over the Edge.  Well, as soon as I finished it, I went out and bought everything else I could find by her (I even found used copies of all her TDD books, which weren’t in reprint at the time), and I’ve read everything since then.  In 2010, I entered a haiku contest she was running and I won!  I got the chance to sit down and talk to her at a conference as part of my prize, and it was a fantastic experience.  Not only is she an amazing writer and a very nice person, I love how she uses her success to bring awareness to issues that matter to her.

RG: I think several of our Kiss and Thrill contributors are turning green with envy right now. 🙂 I Have you ever written fan fiction, and if so, what work was it based on?  If you haven’t, what would you be tempted to write fan fiction about?

EH: Yes!  The very first manuscript I ever finished was written with critique partner Robbie Terman (whom I’ve known since second grade).  In early high school, we wrote a Nancy Drew/Hardy Boys novel – all in pen, in a big notebook.  During our senior year of high school, we went back and took that basic plotline we’d created and completely rewrote it into our own story, separate from the Nancy Drew/Hardy Boys world.  That manuscript got us “Gifted and Talented” credit in high school and showed me that I could finish a book.  There’s still a special place in my heart for Nancy Drew and the Hardy Boys!

RG: I love that story! Robbie is the best–you are so lucky you grew up together! And it’s funny – another 2008 GH finalist, Diana Miller, also named Nancy Drew in her fan fiction answer (you can read that post here). Next question, Facebook or Twitter?

EH: Both, and neither.  I was a latecomer to social media, and I still find some aspects of it really bizarre (like when I’m at a restaurant and at the table next to me, everyone has their phones out and are tweeting instead of talking to each other!).  In other ways, it’s quite fun.  I like Facebook because there’s no limit on words (and as a novelist who likes to write 100,000 word books, that’s handy!) and I enjoy Twitter because it’s quick and I really enjoy the randomness of it.

RG: What is the strangest weapon you’ve used to kill off a character, either on or off-scene?

EH: Hmmmm…my villains actually tend to use pretty straightforward methods for murder, most of the time.  It’s the body disposal where they get weird – for example, in more than one manuscript, I have used alligators (either to destroy evidence or as a way for a villain to try to kill off my heroine).  I’ve been intrigued by this idea ever since I went kayaking in the marshes in Georgia and had to sign a piece of paper that essentially read “this company is not liable if, while kayaking, an alligator eats you.”  I think only a suspense writer would be amused by that, but I still took that kayak trip (and I’m alive to talk about it!).

RG: I have been tubing and canoeing down rivers in Florida and I can confirm having alligator sightings every time. Never a dull moment on the river. 🙂 Okay, now for the best part, tell us about your debut release.

EH: My debut psychological suspense, HUNTED, is about an FBI profiler who learns just how deadly it can be to get inside the head of a killer.

In HUNTED, FBI profiler Evelyn Baine gets what looks like a typical serial killer case to profile.  Except when she arrives at the crime scene, the behavioral evidence seems contradictory.  But it does tell her the killer has struck before, and unless they stop him, he’ll strike again.  As she digs deeper into the case, the serial killer she’s tracking begins to track her too.  This time, it may be Evelyn’s turn to disappear…

New York Times bestselling author Suzanne Brockmann said, “This is a really excellent thriller – fast-paced and exciting, with a memorable cast of characters. Well done!”

RG: Okay, now I think my fellow K&T contributors are exploding with envy over the Brockmann quote! Thank you so much for sharing your debut release day with us, Elizabeth! With 2013 ending with your debut release, I know 2014 is going to be an exciting year for you.

Today Elizabeth is giving away a copy of HUNTED in ebook to one lucky commenter. To enter the drawing, tell us one thing you are looking forward to in 2014.

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About Rachel Grant

Archaeologist Rachel Grant writes romantic suspense where archaeology, politics, and war collide.

Posted on December 31, 2013, in Author Interview, Rachel Grant and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 62 Comments.

  1. Reading..reading…and more reading!

  2. I’m with you on that, Monica!! 🙂

    Rachel, thanks so much for having me here today on my Book Release Day!

  3. Ooh, I’m off to buy this as soon as I’m back Stateside with ready access to a computer and Kindle downloading capabilities.

    Looking forward to in 2014: finding a “real” job & getting some sense of where my life is going! After finishing up grad school and taking a year (come summer) ‘off’ to be a full-time adjunct, it’s sadly time to find something with a little more staying power that serves as a steady source of income 🙂

  4. I’m looking forward to losing more weight after starting a diet in December and having lost 12.5 pounds so far and have a crease by my waist. It takes planning ahead and fixing the meat and sometimes the green veggies the day before. I feel as though this High Protein, Eggs and Green Veggie diet has already streamlined my daily routine. The Chinese herbs have cut out cravings completely. I also want to catch up on my TBR (To Be Read) stash of books including ARC’s (Advance Reader’s Copies) and those I purchased this week from the Friend’s of the Library book sale at $1 a bag for fiction. As a voracious reader, a book is with me just in case there’s a free few minutes to savor the taste of a choice bit of a chapter. Here’ to more page turnings and page turners in the New Year.The cover of Hunted by Elizabeth Heiter makes me look around and hope I’m not in the wrong place. I want to be the hunter, not the prey.

    • Good for you, Sunnymay! Congrats on the weight loss! It’s wonderful to take control and find something that works for you and makes you feel good!

      I love the cover of HUNTED so much – perfectly captures the intensity of the book. And don’t worry – Evelyn does her share of the hunting. 🙂

    • GOOD FOR YOU, Sunnymay!! Keep us posted in all your endeavors.

  5. Thank you so much, Cris! (And I’m not sure being a full-time adjunct is taking time “off” – that’s a lot of work!!)

    Sunnymay, good luck with your diet! That’s a pretty awesome start for one month!! And I love those Friends of the Library sales, too – I’ve gotten hooked on a lot of new authors from books I picked up there. Glad the cover of HUNTED is working – my heroine wants to be the hunter, too!! 😉

  6. Welcome, Elizabeth!! I’m so thrilled to get to share your release day with you!!

  7. I am looking forward to so many things in 2014 – new releases by Carey Baldwin, Lena Diaz, and Manda Collins, for starters. Also Shelley Coriell has a romantic suspense coming out soon that I can’t wait to get my hands on. Then there is Elisabeth Naughton’s Hold on to Me (the sequel to Wait for Me). And Elizabeth Heiter also has an Intrigue coming out this year, right?

    I’m looking forward to releasing my next installment in the Evidence series in the coming months with another to follow a few months after that.

    On the non-reading/writing front, it occurs to me that my daughter will start high school and my son middle school in 2014. I’m not entirely sure how I feel about that. 🙂

  8. Thanks so much, Rachel! It’s fun to be here!

    There are a lot of great releases coming up soon — I’m grabbing those up, too, plus books from fellow new Intrigue authors Janie Crouch and Barb Han. And my critique partner, Robbie Terman, has the third in her series coming out in a few months.

    (My Intrigue trilogy will be out in early 2015, shortly following Hunted’s sequel Vanished.)

    Crazy how time flies – I remember when I first met you and your kids were so little! New adventures…

  9. Welcome Elizabeth and congratulations on your debut!
    GOSH I am so thrilled to hear of your hard-won success. Your writing backstory gives me great hope. 😉

    What kind of research did you do to delve into FBI profiling and serial killer minds? I’m always interested in this answer because I lack the self discipline (or assertive skills) to research professionals enough to get an expert voice in my writing. And it shows.

  10. Hmm, 2014. I am REALLY looking forward a Viking Cruise down the Rhone River (French wine region) this summer as well as short stays before and after in Paris and Nice.

    I am HOPING I look forward to my own RS debut and being hosted by one of these great friends at K&T! (Oh girls, stop pre-fighting over me.)

    Happy New Year to all-

  11. What a wonderful way to start the New Year, Elizabeth! I am so happy for your success and wish you lots of sales. 🙂

    I am looking forward to moving forward with my current manuscript (i.e. finishing the revisions) and hopefully my agent and I will go out on submission. Now I have to get back to my manuscript!

  12. more books to read

  13. Congratulations, Elizabeth! Love that you received such a glowing quote from Suzanne Brockmann! She was my inspiration to write romance! I, too, discovered one book, and then devoured the rest. And I also got to sit with her at a conference dinner and discuss writing and what’s important to her – and find out what a really nice person she is. 2014? I would love to find more time to read. Unfortunately, it’s usually revisions I’m reading, so I better be clearer: time to read other people’s really good books. Think I’ll start with HUNTED! Again, congrats and Happy New Year! (Aside to Rachel: Terrific interview and Happy New Year 🙂

    • Thanks for stopping by, Heather! I’m with you on needing more reading time. It’s a constant battle for me. I’m looking forward to judging the RITA this year because I will have to read. Fingers crossed I get some wonderful books!

  14. Elizabeth, so thrilled for you! Happy Debut release day!

  15. Sarah, thank you for your support – and hello! NICE vacation plans for 2014!!

    As for the research, I do have a friend in the Bureau, which helps! But I started by reading like a maniac – there are a TON of great FBI books out there by former agents, and there are a lot of good ones on profiling (I actually did a guest post on this over at Murder She Writes blog on Dec. 10 – you can see a pic of me with some of my research books and see how nuts I am!). I’ve also found that – especially if you do the basic research – there are plenty of former and current agents (and the PR office) willing to answer questions, as long as it’s not secret! (Also, if you have an FBI question, feel free to shoot me an email!)

    As for your RS debut, I KNOW I’ll get to come back to K&T soon to comment on your release!! You can’t have that many fabulous contests finals under your belt without being an amazing writer! Looking forward to reading one myself!

  16. Sharon, thanks so much! And good luck with your manuscript, Miss Daphne Du Maurier winner! (I was at that awards ceremony and I’m not sure I’ve ever heard quite as much cheering as when your name was called!)

    bn100, I can’t think of a better New Year’s resolution than more books! (My bookshelves – and Kindle – are out of control!)

    Hashbyauthor, thank you so much for the support!! Good luck with the revisions and I really hope you enjoy HUNTED! (P.S. Suz is amazing, isn’t she? I’m as impressed by her as a person as I am with her fabulous books!)

    Lena, thank you for the support! (And thank you for including me so generously in the Intrigue circles, even though my Intrigues aren’t out until 2015! What an amazing group – I feel blessed to be part of it!)

  17. Congrats, Elizabeth. I am so glad we got to meet on the KOD tour at RWA. Hunted is my cardio read for the new year!

  18. Thank you, Rachel! Hopefully the fight/chase scenes will help you run faster!

    I’ve got yours on my Kindle, not-so-patiently waiting for me as I finished up my proposal for Book 5…but that is off now, so I think I’ll be reading again in January!

  19. Welcome Elizabeth! Great interview, Rachel! Hunted sounds truly fascinating, and since I’m not eligible for the win, I just ran right over and downloaded! This is my kind of book, and I look forward to reading it.
    In 2014 I’m also looking forward to many of my Kiss and Thrill pals getting their debuts out there. I’m counting my blessings to have a wonderful group of friends and an amazing family, and I’m super excited about …my plan to lose weight. Pass the brownies please.

  20. Hi Elizabeth! Welcome! I’m so excited to see an FBI romantic suspense coming out! I’m hoping for a resurgence of rom suspense in the NY market for 2014! And I’m another Nancy Drew kid–my bff and I were obsessed with all things Nancy! And I too discovered Suzanne Brockmann by happenstance. I think it was OUT OF CONTROL and I was blown away by it. So happy for you! Can’t wait to read HUNTED:)

  21. Carey – thank you so much!! I really hope you enjoy it! (And I have to tell you that I’m pretty sure chocolate makes you live longer, so as long as the brownies are chocolate, really, they’re healthy…that’s my story and I’m sticking to it!!)

    Manda, thank you! I hope there’s a resurgence of RS, too – I love to read it!! HUNTED is actually straight suspense (though it definitely has strong romantic elements). (But I did sell an Intrigue trilogy that is FBI RS.) And Out of Control is probably one of my all-time favorites, too!

  22. My brother and I had a spy club when we were little and I’m pretty sure it was born out of my love for Nancy Drew and Hardy Boys books. My copy of Hunted is supposed to be delivered today! Can’t wait to read it!!!

  23. Great interview, and I’m with you Suzanne Brockmann, WOW! For 2014 I hope to finish editing my first MS and find an agent and publisher, big year I hope 🙂
    Happy New Years
    Jacquie Biggar

  24. Excited to read this book. Sounds like the start of a great new series.

  25. Welcome, Elizabeth! Congrats on your debut; it sounds great.

    I’m one of those who is green and exploding with envy over your meet with, and quote from, Suzanne Brockmann. She is hands down my favorite RS author. She pretty much dominates my keeper shelf. 😉

    In 2014 I’m looking forward to getting my oldest off to college–though I’ll miss him!–possibly moving (depending on what the Air Force decides), and getting my RS trilogy self-pubbed. And always more travel.

    Great interview, Rachel! Happy 2014, everyone. 🙂

  26. Liz, you’ve come a long way since Nancy Drew and the Hardy Boys! I’m looking forward to skiing in 2014. But this time, Liz, we need to actually go on the slopes and not just sit in the lodge writing!

    • Robbie! Thanks for stopping by!! And LOL – I’d love to spend more time in the lodge writing – I love skiing but I’m exhausted after two hours. A skiing/writing retreat sounds like heaven.

  27. Oh, Barb, for some reason, that doesn’t surprise me at all about your spy club! No wonder you and I get along so well!! (And I’m glad Amazon figured out the delivery for you! Hope you enjoy! And thank you for your support!)

    Jacquie, thank you very much! And good luck with your first manuscript — those hold a special place in your heart, I think! (Keeping my fingers crossed for you for a very big year!)

    Jan, thank you!! I really hope you enjoy reading it as much as I loved writing it!! 🙂

    Gwen, it’s so fun to be here! Thank you! And I’ve got some exploding shelves with Brockmann books, too! Good luck with the potential move and sending your oldest off to college (big events for 2014!!) and woo hoo on the RS trilogy! I’ll be watching for it!

  28. It’s a deal, Robbie! Skiing, here we come…

  29. 2014…looking foward to more exciting books, Hunted definitely fits that category!

  30. Two great grandchildren being born, for a total of four.We are so blessed.

  31. As 2013 winds down, (6 more hours in my part of the world) I just want to take a moment to thank all our readers, guests, and my blog sisters for a wonderful year. I’ll be toasting to you all at midnight!

  32. I am looking forward to a year filled with friends, old and new, that I can share the various moments of my life with. I hope to create many memorable snippets to warm my heart and give me the energy and will to reach for whatever dreams come to mind!

  33. Brenda, and everyone at Kiss and Thrill, I hope you have a wonderful 2014!!

  1. Pingback: Inside the Actors Studio with VANISHED Author Elizabeth Heiter | Kiss and Thrill

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