You write suspense, but they often include romance. What is it about that combination of suspense and romance that makes you gravitate in that direction?
Well, I think in my mind, most romantic suspense novels center more around the romance than the suspense. In my case, it’s the opposite—the suspense drives the story, and then the romance is sort of secondary. And there are some books I’ve written that don’t have any romance at all.
I really like writing about all kinds of relationships—family relationships, husband and wife, mother and son, mother and daughter, that kind of thing. When you like writing about relationships, the most natural thing in the world is writing about romance.
In this series, the romance is developing between Dylan and Casey. In the first book, If I Run, he was chasing her to prosecute her. And he took it personally because he grew up with the victim and was one of his best friends. The victim’s family has hired him to find Casey and work with the police. But by the second book, If I’m Found, he’s realized that she’s innocent. He’s trying to find her so he can protect her from the killers.
So, the chemistry begins to really work between them. I just love it. I think my readers love it, too. They’re hanging on from book to book to see what’s going to happen with Dylan and Casey.
I do tend to have that in every series. I may not have in the first book, but it works toward that in the series. As much as I can, I try to get romance in there. I think that’s what engages readers. Even the men.
As you develop the characters, it carries more weight when they’re in danger…
Exactly. I like for time to be running out in a story, so there’s kind of that ticking bomb and time’s running out. If that person dies or if something terrible happens—like you said, it just raises the stakes when there’s romance.
Click through to find out the way Terri’s Christian faith impacts how she approaches writing suspense..