About a month ago, I discovered a book on Kindle Unlimited that wouldn't let me put it down. Switching Lives by Lisa Rector grabbed me from the start. The premise was rather simple - two sisters end up switched by supernatural means. However, Lisa weaves a tale that is as human as it is fantastic.
I scrunched his tee shirt until his left shoulder blade was visible—and the tattoo that covered it. I traced my fingers over the black picture. The angled shapes and the rounded curves. The muscle under my hand jumped with my feather touch. Ben jerked away. “You’ve seen it. Now forget about it.”
“Gallows, Ben. Gallows?” With a noose swinging free, calling for the head of a witch. “That’s the oddest tat I’ve ever seen.”
The emotions portrayed weave a deeper colored tapestry than the usual romance or paranormal novel. I was mesmerized. I found myself thinking about the story for several weeks and have recommended it frequently. I was thrilled when Lisa agreed to do a Q&A for the blog.
What is your process for writing a novel? Are you a plotter? A pantser? Do you outline or let the story develop as it goes?
I’m a serious outliner and story-structuring freak. Must have all the waypoints, plot points, and pinch points squared away before I write.
How do you feel that you changed as a person and/or writer after completing this work?
Lexi is a lot like me. Pretty much I feel as if all my characters are me, if I had an alter ego or if I lived another life. Lexi has the same feelings about being a mother as I do. Motherhood is hard, but in the end, she wouldn't be any other place than with those she loves. And even though Lexi is a bit passive aggressive, she makes the best of any situation. That's what I do.
What do you hope a reader gains from having read your story?
The story is really just a lot of fun. The romance between Ben and Lexi has a contemporary feel; the switching lives part is the only paranormal aspect. But the novel also deals with some serious pregnancy related things and loss. And facing life, whatever it has to offer. Lexi is an easy going character. She takes life as is. Hopefully readers can see that no matter what life throws at them, somehow life will all work out for the good in the end.
What is your favorite go-to advice for an emerging writer?
Get a support group. Join a critique group. Free write without stopping until the book is done. Forget the grammar at first. Just get it down. Find people to critique, beta-read, and proofread. But have fun. Don’t let anyone tell you how to write your book. Take the advice and use what works for you. And remember, only write the parts people want to read!
What's next for you? Do you have any works in progress?
I am working on another paranormal novel called My Vampire. Here's the working blurb. The blood of a storm sprite makes an intoxicating elixir for most supernatural beings, especially vampires. When Killian, a reclusive vampire, comes across Sasha, a rare storm sprite, and saves her life, the two develop an unlikely friendship, despite Killian’s constant craving for her blood. The death of a woman in Sasha’s dorm spirals a hunt for an amulet that has demonic powers, and Sasha and Killian are stuck between the feuding demons and vampires who are determined to possess the secrets the amulet carries. Killian is determined to keep Sasha safe from the vampires and demons vying for her blood, but the cost is something Sasha isn’t willing Killian to give up.
Lisa Rector is a Maryland native and can’t imagine living anywhere else. And no, she doesn’t like crabs or Old Bay Seasoning. A mountain girl at heart, every so often, she drifts down to the coast and relishes the calm from the beachy breezes.
She married her high school sweetheart for time and all
eternity in the Washington D.C. Temple after she fell in love with his endless sense of humor. She enjoyed a short stint as a labor and delivery nurse before becoming a stay-at-home mom for her two beautiful daughters. In addition to her love of writing, her passions are gardening, yoga, and her faith in Jesus Christ. Her favorite delights are decadent homemade cakes, cookies, or brownies—never store-bought.
Lisa has four published romantic fantasy novels. The Emrys Chronicles. Her novels are an ingenious look at the power of divine light inside immortals and humans, the ability to harness the energy, and the choices a person must make when darkness interferes. Her newest release is a paranormal romance called Switching Lives.