The Easy, Fool-proof way to Hit the Lists with Your First Romantic Suspense!
I recently diversified my writing by starting a new contemporary romantic suspense series called the Red Team. It was a challenge widening my writing horizons from the historical westerns of my first series. I thought writing contemporaries would involve less research than historicals. Wrong assumption. I spent months investigating what would become my premise for the first three books in the series, research that took me on a virtual journey from the wilds of Wyoming to war-ravaged Afghanistan.
The Edge of Courage, the first in my Red Team series, came out this spring. It’s about a former member of a special operations team who has returned to Wyoming from a long-term undercover assignment. He has a severe case of PTSD, unfinished business in Afghanistan, and a warlord on his trail. Exciting, scary, emotional stuff—complexity that made the story a lot of fun to write.
Recently, I discussed some of the research I’d been doing for the book with another author. The more I explained the different things I’d investigated, the paler he became. He began to shake his head. “Elaine, my friend, there are eyes on you. You’ve made the CIA’s, the FBI’s, the Department of Homeland Security’s, and the NSA’s watch lists. You better give yourself a whole day to get through security the next time you try to fly anywhere.”
Well, that’s a little silly. I’m just a regular, law-abiding citizen. Though, maybe you wouldn’t know it if you were ever to examine my Google search history, which looks something like this:
* How does a therapeutic riding center support rehabilitation?
* What private corporations were founded by ex-SEALS?
* Are there gangs in the military?
* Free porn (My husband and I share a computer. Need I say more?)
* What gangs are selling military weapons on the street?
* How do you make heroin?
* How much does C-4 weigh?
* Free porn (sigh)
* What is the preferred knife of Special Forces?
* How do you build a suicide bomb?
* How do you disarm a suicide bomb?
* How free porn is ruining marriages…
My husband worried I’d get a call while I was at work someday telling me he’d been arrested on suspicion of terrorism. “Don’t worry, honey,” I reassured him. “I’ll just tell them, ‘What husband? I’m not married!’”
Maybe there was something to my friend’s worries. I bet I did make those watch lists!
Leave a comment to tell me about some of the crazy things you’ve researched on the Web. One lucky commenter will receive an ebook copy of The Edge of Courage. Visit Elaine’s Website (www.ElaineLevine.com) for updates on release dates for the next books in the Red Team series!
Rocco Silas has come home to Wyoming after long years as a Red Team operative in Afghanistan. It isn’t easy returning to civilian life, especially burdened as he is with a staggering case of PTSD or hunted as he is by an enemy determined to seek an eye-for-eye–neither of which can he battle until he confronts the truth of what happened one fateful day in the high mountain ranges of the Hindu Kush.
. . . She alone holds the key to his sanity.
Mandy Fielding’s dream of opening a therapeutic riding center on her family’s ranch is almost within her grasp–until she hires Rocco Silas, a dangerous ex-Spec Ops friend of her brother’s. His haunted eyes and passionate touch promise a love she never dared believe possible. Can they confront the truth of his past and build a future together or will the enemy stalking him destroy them both?
*Elaine is giving away one e-copy of her book! To enter simply tell us what you love about a good romantic suspense and be sure to also leave me a way to find you if you win. Contest open until July 11th @ 11:59 pm EST – winner announced shortly after*