Just because Valentine’s Day is over, doesn’t mean the romance is. We still have a few more Love-Kissed authors to learn about!
RB (Roz) Marshall writes the Highland Horse Whisperer cozy mystery Series. It is a delightful blend of high-tech and the horse communities (who knew there were stables in the heart of London!) with a heaping of mystery. And a hint of romance!
But when you visit her Website you’ll find so much more; Paranormal, romance, woman’s fiction-these are just the start. Roz lives in Scotland with her husband, cat and dog. She loves horses just as much as Izzy, her main character as well as skiing and music. And if that’s not enough, she is also a cover designer.
Horse trainer by day, I.T. consultant by night, Izzy Paterson is a classic nerd who’s better with animals than humans. But when a body is found at the feet of a prize stallion in the queen’s summer castle in the Scottish Highlands, Izzy—and her new friend Craig—are in the wrong place at the wrong time,
becoming suspects in the murder…
Now let’s hear from Roz…
Which is more important to your book, the mystery or the love story?
The mystery! It’s a cozy mystery, so… But I used to write romance, and I enjoy reading cozies where there’s a romantic sub-plot, so I suppose it’s no surprise I included one in my series.
What type of love story plays out in your book—friends to love, enemy to love, instant love, or something else?
A Corpse at the Castle has a bit of a love triangle going on… My protagonist, Izzy, has to choose between a hot cop and a boy next door type.
The hot cop reminds her of Jon Snow from the Game of Thrones TV series–all dark and brooding with pheromones that set her brain spinning. The boy next door has lots in common with her–he likes horses, for example, and has similar childhood memories. Who should she choose?
Does the love element cause problems for your protagonist?
Of course! The course of true love never runs smoothly, does it…?There are misunderstandings, jealousy and upsets which leave Izzy questioning her choices.
What would you say is your most interesting writing quirk?
I find it hard not to set my stories in my homeland of Scotland.
It has landscapes to die for, quirky characters around every corner and plenty of interesting events and festivals to help inspire my plots.
My series The Highland Horse Whisperer Mysteries series is set in the fictional village of Glengowrie in Perthshire, on the edge of the Scottish Highlands. It’s small enough that Izzy feels immediately at home, finding new friends to become her surrogate family, but also large enough that we meet lots of interesting and eccentric characters to add to the twists and turns of the plot!
What is the most surprising thing you discovered while writing your book?
The Queen (Queen Elizabeth II) doesn’t usually attend funerals.
When I thought about it, it made sense. I mean, how would you choose which to go to? If you honour one dignitary with your presence, then you’d have to honour everyone. Plus, the presence of a royal would tend to take the focus away from the deceased, which the Queen would not wish to do.
Instead, she just attends funerals of family members and close friends.
What comes first, the plot or characters?
I can’t start a book unless I’ve an idea of how it will end. For my mysteries, I need to know whodunnit, who they dunnit to, why, and how. After that, I can start writing. So the main highlights of the plot come first.
From there, my characters discover the clues along with me. And I discover my characters as I write the first story in a series. With each chapter, they become more real to me, and they grow and develop as the series continues.
That’s why I can’t plot in too much detail—I find my characters start to have opinions about what should happen next, and they often take the story in directions I hadn’t imagined when I started writing!