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Interview with Elizabeth Goddard

Gothic romance novels influenced Elizabeth Goddard as a young reader before she’d ever written her first book, so it’s no surprise that she ended up writing romantic suspense. Her latest novel continues her practice of setting stories in unique locations. To find out which of her settings has been her favorite and where she hopes to travel in the near future, read on!

Welcome, Elizabeth. You have a degree in computer science and worked in software sales. Did you ever think you would write novels full time? And how has that work experience aided your writing career?
It wasn’t until I decided to stay home with my first child that I considered pursuing that long-time dream to write a novel. Plus I’ve always been an entrepreneur at heart and loved the idea of being my own boss. I never imagined that one day I would actually be writing novels full time—it truly is a dream come true. My career let me travel all over the country and those travel experiences have contributed in small ways to the writing.

Was there a turning point in your writing journey that felt like a significant step forward? (If yes, what was it? And where did it lead?)
I started out writing sweet romance novels for Heartsong Presents, but when I signed with my agent, Steve Laube, I felt that was a big step forward because I knew he could help me pursue my dreams to write longer novels. I added writing for Love Inspired Suspense, and I credit them with teaching me how to write in the romantic suspense genre. Then in 2017, Steve was instrumental in landing me a contract with Revell to write a three-book romantic suspense series.

You say your stories are set in unique locations to help give readers an escape. What are some of those locations and do you have a personal favorite location from among your books?

In 2010 we moved from Texas to Oregon, and I spent a lot of time on the Oregon coast and hiking in the Redwoods. I fell in love with the Pacific Northwest and have set many novels in that region. But I also love the Rockies and have many memories of time spent with family and with my husband on anniversaries in places like Jackson Hole, Wyoming. I’d have to say Jackson Hole is my favorite setting—love the region which includes Yellowstone and Grand Teton National Parks.

So many of us have probably been dreaming of travel this past year. What's on your travel bucket list?
I live in Washington now and I hope to soon take a cruise up the Inside Passage to visit Juneau, Alaska.

Why romantic suspense? And where do your plot ideas come from? (I've always been curious about how suspense writers dream up the kinds of scenarios none of us would want to experience in real life!)
Even when I was writing sweet romance it seemed that all my stories had a bit of mystery or suspense in them. Maybe that came naturally to me because I read a lot of gothic romances growing up—Phyllis A. Whitney and Victoria Holt for example. As for plot ideas, I’m always thinking of the worst-case scenarios—that also comes naturally to me. Ha!

Who are some authors in your genre (past and/or present) you admire?
As mentioned earlier, I admire gothic romance novelists, Phyllis A. Whitney and Victoria Holt. I also love Daphne Du Maurier’s work. More contemporary novelists include Dee Henderson, and I think she really gave the Christian romantic suspense market a huge boost. I read widely in my genre—mostly Christian romantic suspense but also often branch out to the general market.

When you aren't actively writing (i.e. sitting at a desk or with a computer) how do you like to spend your time?
Reading. Ha ha! Seriously, I love to read. I try to get exercise and l love to hike or run. At times I play the piano or guitar and dabble in crochet. But then I end up reading again.


Lisa Bartelt is a child of the flatlands fulfilling her dream of living near mountains in Pennsylvania. She loves reading, writing and listening to stories—true ones, made-up ones and the ones in between—preferably with a cup of coffee in hand. Wife, mom of two, writer, ordinary girl, Lisa blogs about books, faith, family and the unexpected turns of life at

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