I’m super excited about my guest today. Ruthie Knox‘s debut contemporary romance novel Ride With Me was published just over a year ago. Since then, she’s published another novel – About Last Night – two fantastic novellas and her third novel, Along Came Trouble, came out last week. It’s a good thing she’s so prolific because a lot of readers – myself included – are addicted to Knox.
Ruthie’s here giving away a digital copy of Along Came Trouble to one person who leaves a comment. But first, help me welcome Ruthie Knox!
1. I was lucky enough to get to read an advance copy of Along Came Trouble, and I loved it. Can you set the scene for readers who don’t know about your new Camelot series – where it’s set and the family it’s based around?
Sure! The Camelot series focuses on the Clark siblings – Amber, Caleb, and Katie – who grew up in Camelot, Ohio, a sleepy little village that houses a liberal arts college and not much else. Their father owns an aging apartment complex, and their mother works in the college admissions office, so the Clarks are decidedly lower-middle-class Midwesterners – basically all big-hearted, helpful people, but with the usual assortment of flaws.
How To Misbehave, the first novella, is set a decade earlier than the others so it can introduce Amber and tells the story of how a tornado and a power outage combined to throw her together with her husband-to-be, Tony—at which point the series jumps ahead to the present day, when Amber and Tony have three kids and it’s Amber’s younger siblings who are meeting their matches.
Along Came Trouble is Caleb’s book. After fifteen years in the Military Police, Caleb has moved home to help his family after his father has a stroke. He’s trying to get a fledgling security company off the ground when he meets Ellen Callahan and life-complicating fireworks ensue.
The third book, Flirting with Disaster, will be youngest sibling Katie’s. And there’s a fourth novella in the works that will bring Tony and Amber’s story up to the “present” and wrap up the Clark family saga. In the future, I’d like to do more Camelot books – some with Tony’s family, the Mazzaras, as well as at least one other family I have in mind. We’ll see.
2. One of the many things I love about your books is how human your characters are. They’re flawed yet endearing, and that helps me relate to them. But instead of asking about specific characters, I want to know about you. What would you say your most endearing flaw is? 🙂
Ha! Um. I’m not sure any of my flaws are endearing. But probably the most obvious is that I don’t really cut myself any slack. Ever. I must do all the things.
3. I’m really, really intrigued by your upcoming Strangers on a Train series of novellas, especially the first one, Big Boy. That cover! Oh, the romance! What can you tell us about the series?
That series is such fun! It’s all Twitter’s fault. Someone tweeted a link to this Tumblr called “Hot Guys on the Train,” and I shared it, musing that there had to be a great story in all those pictures. Then several of my other writing friends and I fell down this rabbit hole of train-stranger stories, and when we emerged we’d sort of accidentally planned an anthology. In the end, Samhain wanted to bring it out as separate stories instead (though there will be a print anthology), but either way the world will be meeting all ten of our strangers on a train next month.
Strangers on a Train has stories by Meg Maguire (hot rebound action in a cold Boston T stop), Serena Bell (workaholic ex-boyfriend crashes his woman’s daily commute to NYC for a week, determined to win her back), Donna Cummings (ailing baseball player meets lying PR maven on a California wine-appreciation train ride), Samantha Hunter (claustrophobic heroine forced to share a berth with a hot ex-cop), and of course me.
Big Boy, my own story, is about a woman who meets her guy every month at the National Railroad Museum for a role-playing date. It starts out as an escape from her problems but starts to get serious . . . only she doesn’t know his name or what he does for a living, and he wants to keep it that way.
4. I admire anyone who has a Ph.D., and the fact that yours is in modern British history is even better. What did you write your dissertation on? Do you see yourself ever working it into a novel somehow?
Probably not, since it has a lot of dead babies in it. My dissertation was about infanticide. Sort of. It was also sort of about foster care and adoption. It’s all rather complicated, and was quite the buzz-kill at many a cocktail party back when I was writing it. But the short answer is that I was interested in nineteenth-century British social history, and more particularly the history of poor women and unwanted children.
I do toy with the idea of writing historical romance from time to time. I have this mail-order bride story…
5. On your website, you say you started writing in October 2010 for your own amusement and to help rescue your sanity. What was driving you insane?
Motherhood. My son was nearly two then, and the intensity of not-sleeping-breastfeeding-fulfilling-his-every-need was getting to be a bit much, mentally. But also, and perhaps more important, there was kind of a building mental/creative pressure because I’d been doing my job for seven years and there wasn’t anything new to learn, and I’d lost my creative escape in knitting. I was a really fanatical knitter for about three years – and then I found that it didn’t mix very well with having a baby. So writing gave me new work, something new to think about, and that creative outlet I was craving.
1. Which of your heroes would you want to be stranded with on a desert island?
Carson from Room at the Inn, because he would know how to build the awesomest shelter. And maybe after a decade or so he’d forget about Julie and put the moves on me.
2. Have you ever been told you look like someone famous? If not, who would you love to be told you remind someone of?
I think I’m the opposite of the sort of person who looks like someone famous – I’m the sort who looks so innocuous that I always remind people of someone they knew once. Some nice girl whose name they can’t remember. Also, I get asked for directions a lot.
I would love to be told I remind someone of Meryl Streep, but so far no luck with that.
3. DIY or call an expert?
DIY! I’m too cheap to call an expert.
Ruthie’s giving away a digital copy of Along Came Trouble to one person who leaves a comment below. I’ll randomly choose a winner on Tuesday March 26th. Good luck!
Ruthie Knox’s Camelot series continues in this sizzling eBook original novel, featuring two headstrong souls who bump heads—and bodies—as temptation and lust bring nothing but delicious trouble.
An accomplished lawyer and driven single mother, Ellen Callahan isn’t looking for any help. She’s doing just fine on her own. So Ellen’s more than a little peeved when her brother, an international pop star, hires a security guard to protect her from a prying press that will stop at nothing to dig up dirt on him. But when the tanned and toned Caleb Clark shows up at her door, Ellen might just have to plead the fifth.
Back home after a deployment in Iraq and looking for work as a civilian, Caleb signs on as Ellen’s bodyguard. After combat in the hot desert sun, this job should be a breeze. But guarding the willful beauty is harder than he imagined—and Caleb can’t resist the temptation to mix business with pleasure. With their desires growing more undeniable by the day, Ellen and Caleb give in to an evening of steamy passion. But will they ever be able to share more than just a one-night stand?