AUSSIE MONTH with Tricia Stringer
Describe yourself in one word:
What is your background with regard to writing?
I started writing stories to bring local history alive for primary children in my area. That’s when I realised I had a lot to learn. A children’s writing course started me on a continued learning journey. An ad for a short story competition with a rural theme inspired my first rural romance published via POD in 2004. I haven’t stopped learning and writing since.
Tell us about Riverboat Point:
My third rural romance with Harlequin. The setting is rural South Australia, in a small town on the Murray River. There’s a houseboat business, a woman, Savannah, who doesn’t want to be there and neighbours who aren’t what they seem. In between learning the business and unravelling the mysterious neighbours Savannah finds romance with Ethan only to discover he’s hiding something as well. I enjoyed the intrigue of this story and finding out what was happening behind the scenes.
What inspired this novel?
Holidays on the Murray, in particular some idyllic houseboat trips. Great fodder for the writer’s brain drifting along past beautiful scenery with little to do but imagine.
What are you reading right now?
The Love Song of Miss Queenie Hennessy by Rachel Joyce. It’s a very different style of romance.
Number one thing to do on your bucket list?
Travel more, especially those parts of Australia I haven’t visited yet.
Best thing about being an Aussie?
Choice of lifestyle and environment
What you want readers to know about the romance genre?
It’s such a broad genre, as diverse as the interests of readers. There’s something for everyone.
What have you got in store for your readers in 2015?
I have a new book coming out in May called Heart of the Country. It’s a new direction for me in that it’s historical saga, set in mid nineteenth century South Australia when the first pastoral leases were taken up in the Flinders Ranges. As mentioned above there is still romance. What would life be without it! There will also be another rural romance in time for Christmas but haven’t settled on a title for it yet.
What were your big achievements of 2014?
To retire from fulltime work and devote my time to writing. Loving it.
Savannah Smith’s been hurt by life. She doesn’t need people, then she meets Ethan Daly. In the peace of Riverboat Point, magic can happen.
Savannah has a chip on her shoulder. And no wonder: apart from her tough teenage years, a car accident not only claimed her parents’ lives, but left her with permanent injuries.
She’s not close to her little brother Jax either – although she’s always been envious of his ability to just enjoy life. Jax moves to a small town, Riverboat Point, on the Murray River, and asks her to come too. She won’t leave the city but when Jax disappears leaving a vague warning to watch out for the neighbours, she’s forced to move and take over his houseboat business.
With no idea what to watch out for she keeps all the neighbours at arm’s length, including the mysterious guy next door, Ethan. Savannah is attracted to her tall dark neighbour but won’t admit it. She can trust no one. In spite of her fears, they work closely and she can’t deny the chemistry. Finally, she lets her guard down – only to discover he has been lying to her all along…
Will Jax ever return, or has he met with foul play? Who is interfering with the houseboats and stealing from the business? Will Savannah find out the truth about Jax and Ethan’s deal … and can she ever trust Ethan again?