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Monday, November 26, 2012

Diet Dr. Pepper, Faulkner, and Love Inspired Suspense Author Liz Johnson

Happy post-Thanksgiving, everyone! If you are feeling a bit of a post-holiday lull, you should totally read a new book, right? And what better book to read than Liz Johnson's newest release for Love Inspired Suspense, A Promise to Protect?

Author Liz Johnson. Photo courtesy of Liz Johnson.

I am so pleased to be hosting Liz on the Lady Scribes blog today. Here's a bit of background on her:

About the Author: Liz Johnson graduated from Northern Arizona University in Flagstaff with a degree in public relations and works as an editorial and marketing manager at a Christian publisher. She is a two-time ACFW Carol Award finalist, and A Promise to Protect is her fourth novel with Love Inspired Suspense. Liz makes her home in Nashville, TN, where she enjoys theater, exploring the local music scene, and making frequent trips to Arizona to dote on her two nephews and three nieces. She loves stories of true love with happy endings. She enjoys connecting with readers and fellow book lovers online at www.lizjohnsonbooks.com, twitter.com/lizjohnsonbooks, and facebook.com/lizjohnsonbooks.

Let the interview begin!

LG: What made you choose to write in the inspy genre?I've always loved to write, and I feel really strongly that my writing is a gift from God. I want to serve Him with that gift. Also, it's a goal of mine to write books that are safe for any readers. I love hearing from moms, daughters, and granddaughters who have all read my books. Even more fun was hearing that my eight-year-old niece read my Christmas novella. Moms don't have to worry that there's anything inappropriate for young readers.

LG: What's the biggest misconception about you as a writer?I'm not sure that there are any conceptions about me at all. :) But I suppose there are lots of misconceptions about writers in general. One of the questions I get the most is "When will you quit your day job and write full-time?" After I stop laughing, I say, "Not for a very long time." I work in marketing by day, and I really like that my writing can be for fun. It's something I get to do for myself. Plus, it's kind of nice not to have the pressure to write just to keep a roof over my head. That I get to write for the fun of it and other people enjoy reading my books is really a treat.

LG: How do you get in the mood to write?I'm afraid I fall into the mindset of William Faulkner, who said, "I only write when I am inspired. Fortunately I am inspired at 9 o'clock every morning." I don't wait until I'm in the mood to write. I set a schedule, usually at night, and that helps me get into the mood. And even if I don't feel like writing, I still sit in front of my computer tapping out a story. I do have a couple things that I enjoy: a comfy chair, lounge-wear, and a good old diet dr. pepper. But when I write in a coffee shop or with a friend, I may not have any of those, and I still work on a project.

LG: Have you considered writing in another genre?My new book, A Promise to Protect, is my fourth romantic suspense for Love Inspired Suspense, and I love writing for them. Suspense is such a fun genre. With villains who are willing to risk everything, strong, brave heroes, and spunky, spirited heroines, what's not to love? I did write a historical novella last year. The amount of research required for historicals had always intimidated me, but I loved writing about the end of the Civil War in Middle Tennessee. I was able to explore the history of the Nashville area and visit some of the plantations near my home and use that to build the story. Throughout the years I've written lots of books, and the one thing they all have in common is the romantic element. I love a good love story.

LG: Name 1 historical figure who inspires you and why.I want to say Abraham Lincoln because he's been a favorite of mine for years, but that seems a little bit too easy given the new movie. So I'll go with L.M. Montgomery, the author of Anne of Green Gables and so many other magnificent books. Though her life wasn't as happy as I always thought it should be, Maud found beauty in nature and God's creation. Her books inspired me to visit Prince Edward Island, and I immediately fell in love with the island that she loved, too. Her books and her life remind me that there's joy to be found in the simple things.

LG: I am a huge LMM fan, too. My dream vacation is Prince Edward Island! Liz, finish this sentence: "If I couldn't write, I would..."Have a lot of free time. :) Seriously, I think I'd go a little crazy. The stories in my mind need an escape. I need to let them out.

LG: OK, we are almost out of time. Lightning round! Choose 1:

Chocolate or vanilla?
milk chocolate
Diamonds or pearls? diamonds
Dogs or cats? I'm petless. :(
Brad Pitt or George Clooney? Oh ... neither? Give me Damian Lewis or Jeremy Renner any day!

Thanks so much for stopping by today, Liz, and for giving away a copy of A Promise to Protect to one lucky reader. Readers--if you want to be entered in today's drawing, please leave a comment below with your email address. Thank you!

A Promise to Protect. Photo courtesy of Liz Johnson.
And here's just a taste to spark your interest:

A Promise to Protect
Navy SEAL Matt Waterstone knows about keeping people safe. When his best friend’s sister is attacked, Matt promises no harm will come to Ashley Sawyer–not on his watch. But Matt’s not the only protective one. Ashley will do anything to safeguard the residents of the battered women’s shelter she runs. She’s sure she can handle the threats she gets in return. What she can’t handle is the way Matt scales the walls around her heart. Yet when she falls prey to a crime web more sinister than she’d realized, trusting Matt could be the only way to survive.


  1. Welcome to LadyScribes, Liz! Prince Edward Island is on my list too. How cool that you got to visit.

    I love suspense too. A Promise to Protect sounds like a page turner!

  2. Welcome to Lady Scribes, Liz! I'm always interested in how others write, and I love that quite from Faulkner. Kudos to you for laying out a writing routine and sticking with it.
    As for your book, who can resist a Navy SEAL?? It looks great, and I wish you the best of luck with it :)

  3. Welcome to Lady scribes, Liz! I love that you write for fun and do not put pressure on yourself. I try to have that very attitude with my writing! Good luck with the new book!

  4. Liz, Welcome to Lady Scribes! Thanks so much for visiting with us today. I have to admit, I'm jealous of your ability to write on a schedule--I make my attempts on a schedule, but there are days when the words rebuke me. Grrr. Congrats and good luck with A Promise to Protect!

  5. Thanks so much for the warm welcome, Deb, Erin, Julie, and Andris! :) It's such a treat to be here at Lady Scribes! Lily, thanks for the great interview questions.

    Deb and Lily, I hope you both make it to PEI some day. It's such a gorgeous island and filled with the warmest, sweetest people.

    Thanks agains for having me!

  6. Liz, this book of yours sounds like one I would love to read. Please enter me in the drawing.
    Maxie ( mac262@me.com )

  7. I enjoyed reading the interview! Thanks for sharing it! That's great your writing can be for fun! :)

    jswaks at gmail dot com

  8. Maxie, Jes, and Eli, thanks for stopping by and reading the interview! :)

  9. L.M. Montgomery is a favorite of mine, too, Liz. Thanks for hanging out with us today at Lady Scribes. A Promise to Protect looks like a great read. Congrats! :)

  10. And the winner of A Promise to Protect is Jes! Liz will be in touch with you, Jes. Thanks to everyone who participated!