Please welcome my Wednesday guest, Kate Wyland. Kate is a life-long horse nut who started riding at three years old. She’s taken part in a great variety of equestrian activities with her greatest loves being dressage and trail riding in the mountains. A few years ago, she exchanged her tech writing “bug” hat for a fiction writing Stetson. Suspense, romance, horses and sometimes the paranormal are the themes she likes to explore in her books. And she delights in sharing her love of animals and country living.
One question an author is commonly asked is: “what is the theme of your book?” Since I usually write romantic suspense stories, I’ve discovered that my themes generally revolve around facing fears and taking risks. It can be dealing with a scary situation rather than running from it or it might be risking heartbreak by daring to love. We all face these kinds of choices in our lives, though usually not as dramatic.
I was raised in a time when girls were supposed to be helpless and let the big strong guy take care of them. Of course, while the culture was teaching me this I was also regularly handling and training thousand pound horses and doing the heavy work involved with taking care of them. A rather schizophrenic set of messages, to say the least. I also absorbed a lot of my folks’ fears, provoked by moving from a smallish Midwestern town to big bad Los Angeles. They didn’t know how to judge the very different situation and as a result I wasn’t allowed to do a lot of things that my older brothers and sister had done back home.
Breaking free from those influences has taken a lot of effort and I’ve had to overcome many fears over the years. Maybe that’s why I’m drawn to writing about heroines and heroes who have been traumatized and must learn to deal with their demons. In my book Wyoming Escape, the heroine Mikela was badly treated by the police after she found her business partner dead, possibly murdered. Five years later, when she stumbles upon another dead body and a dirty cop, her first reaction is to run.
She stood frozen, her mind whirling. The cop she had seen had to have been involved with this. Otherwise, he wouldn’t have just walked away from a crime scene. Given the state of her office, either he or Braddock had been looking for something. If the cop hadn’t found the object of his search and had killed Sam, he’d probably go after her next. If the police took her into custody—given her past and that the gun was hers—he’d be able to get at her with no problem.
Her panic takes her to a Wyoming Dude Ranch where she meets Shawn Saunders, a Marine home from Afghanistan on medical leave. Shawn is all too familiar with the kind of panic he sees in Mike’s (Mikela’s new name) eyes and doesn’t feel able to take on her problems. He has his own healing to do.
A familiar rage coursed through him, setting his blood racing. He sucked in a deep breath and tried to calm his pulse. Crap, he really couldn’t deal with this. He needed to get HIS shit together. He needed his head on straight when he went back to his men. Not that he would ever be quite the same after the last mission.
He couldn’t become involved with Mike’s problems. He’d have to step back. Let Harry handle her. He'd be leaving in a few more days anyway.
If only he could get her terrified look out of his mind.
When the dirty cop discovers Mikela’s hiding place and endangers her new friends, she starts to run. Shawn steps in to protect her and she realizes she has to face her fears, no matter the cost.
With the gravel gouging her hands, she began scrambling as fast she could. Then gunfire erupted from the hillside. She pulled up short. What am I doing? Shawn was risking his life for her and she was going the opposite direction to hide? Granted, he was trained for this, but she couldn’t just back away. That was the kind of betrayal she’d experienced all her life.
She pivoted around, her jaw tight with determination, and crept back to the boulders.
In my life I’ve dealt with shyness and social fears, as well as fear of heights and speaking in public. Mikela faces her fear of betrayal. What kinds of things have you confronted? What fears have you conquered?
One dead body is frightening enough, but a second one, plus a dirty cop, sends chef Mikela Richards fleeing for her life. The ultimate city girl finds a safe hiding place on a Wyoming Dude ranch, where she tries to discover if the murders are connected to the mysterious computer memory stick she found in her car. But her fragile feeling of safety is disturbed by a compelling Marine, home on leave.
Back from Afghanistan to heal both physically and emotionally, Shawn Saunders recognizes the type of fear in Mikela's eyes---it's one of the things he's come home to forget. Even though he knows it's a bad idea, he can't stop himself from trying to help her, while she's even more afraid of letting him. In spite of their reservations, neither can resist the pull of their attraction.
Website : http://katewyland.com/
Website : http://katewyland.com/