Monday, November 21, 2011

Interview with Author, BETH TRISSEL

INTERVIEW WITH AUTHOR    Beth Trissel                        

Today I’m interviewing Beth Trissel.  Her novella, Somewhere the Bells Ring, a vintage American ghost story Christmas romance, was released on Nov 9th by the Wild Rose Press.

Please tell my readers a little bit about your book.

Thanks for having me on your lovely blog, Sarah.  Somewhere the Bells Ring is set in the gracious old Virginia home place, circa 1816, in the Shenandoah Valley where my father was born and raised and I grew up visiting during the holidays.  Nostalgia over the late 1960’s inspired the time period and the story opens during the tumultuous age of hippies, Vietnam, and some of the best darn rock music ever written.  From 1968, the story flashes back to an earlier era, 1918 and the end of World War One.  Having a Marine Corps Captain Grandfather who distinguished himself in France during the thick of the fighting and then tragically died when my father was only three definitely influenced this story.  I’ve dedicated it to him.  If you enjoy an intriguing mystery with Gothic overtones set in vintage America and heart-tugging romance then Somewhere the Bells Ring is for you.  Oh, and did I mention the ghost?  I always did think that house was haunted.

Describe the genre of this particular title, and is the only genre you write in? 

I write both light paranormal ghost story/time travel romances in my ‘Somewhere’ series and historical romance, so write for two different lines and senior editors at The Wild Rose Press.  The common thread in all my stories is my fascination with the past.  

When did you start writing toward publication?  

16 years ago.  I wrote for 12 + years before my first book, Somewhere My love, was published.

Did you have several manuscripts finished before you sold? If so, did you send them out yourself?
Yes, I had four or five completed manuscripts before the first one was published and ooodles of rejections from agents/editors.  I was faring well in the contest circuit, though, including a Golden Heart final, and had finally landed a good NY editor, but she couldn’t sell my work to traditional New York Publishers, so I said goodbye and submitted to the Wild Rose Press in 2008.  So far, they’ve been very enthusiastic about everything I submit.  I’m a big fan of TWRP and have no plans to go anywhere else, unless I write something they don’t publish at some point.   If that happens I’ll probably publish it myself.  I did that with a work of nonfiction about country life—it finaled in the EPPIES!  As did my historical romance Red Bird’s Song.  Quite a thrill.

Her old family home where the story takes place.
Why have you become a published author?  
 To share my stories with the world.

Do you have any rejection stories to share? 
 Literally hundreds.  I think I must have queried every agent out there at some point, and a number of editors.  For ages a ‘good’ rejection letter, the personal kind with a pat on the back along with the inevitable ‘but’ was as good as it got.

What is your writing routine like? 
 I used to have one.  With five grandbabies living nearby, now I just write whenever I  can.

What sort of promo do you do? Do you have help? 
I wish.  I do interviews, like this one, guest blog in addition to being an avid blogger myself, belong to facebook, twitter, triberr, authorsden, sometimes pay for advertisements on popular romance review sites…always on the prowl. 

Having achieved your goal to be a published author, what is the most rewarding thing?

Positive feedback from readers and stellar reviews.  I really don’t want to hear about it if you think I’ve written the worst book you’ve ever read.  And yes, I’ve gotten a few of those from readers too.  It’s all part of the journey.   

Are you a member of any writing organizations and, if so, have they helped. 
 RWA (forever) Virginia Romance Writers, Celtic Heart Romance Writers online group, The Wild Rose Press loop…to name the most important ones.  The workshops, writing tips, support, and guidance from these groups has been invaluable.

Will you share some encouraging words for authors still struggling for that first contract? 
 Don’t give up.  Keep on writing.  Hone the craft, better your skills.  Someday, someway, you will make it.

What’s next for you?  
I recently turned in a historical romance novel to my WRP historical editor and am awaiting word.  It’s the third story in my colonial frontier trilogy, the sequel to Through the Fire.  And now, I’m at work on my next light paranormal/time travel romance, the sequel to Somewhere My Lass.

BLURB for Somewhere the Bells Ring:
Caught with pot in her dorm room, Bailey Randolph is exiled to a relative's ancestral home in Virginia to straighten herself out. Banishment to Maple Hill is dismal, until a ghost appears requesting her help. Bailey is frightened but intrigued. Then her girlhood crush, Eric Burke, arrives and suddenly Maple Hill isn't so bad.

To Eric, wounded in Vietnam, his military career shattered, this homecoming feels no less like exile. But when he finds Bailey at Maple Hill, her fairy-like beauty gives him reason to hope--until she tells him about the ghost haunting the house. Then he wonders if her one experiment with pot has made her crazy.

As Bailey and Eric draw closer, he agrees to help her find a long-forgotten Christmas gift the ghost wants. But will the magic of Christmas be enough to make Eric believe--in Bailey and the ghost--before the Christmas bells ring?~

“Bailey.” He spoke softly, so as not to startle her.

She turned toward him. In her long, white nightgown, hair tumbled down around her, wearing that lost look, she bore an unnerving resemblance to the mysterious woman in Wilkie Collins’ classic mystery, The Woman in White. Eric fervently hoped the similarity ended there. As he recalled from the novel, that unfortunate lady had been unhinged.

Leaving the door ajar, he stepped inside. “We missed you at breakfast.”

She answered distractedly. “I wasn’t hungry.”

He limped to where she stood, the hitch in his leg a little less pronounced today. Maybe he was getting stronger. “Why are you here, looking for ghosts?”

“Or a door to the past.”

He tried to coax a smile to her trembling lips. “Did you check inside the wardrobe?”

“Eric, I’m being serious.”

“That’s what worries me.” Leaning on his cane with one arm, he closed his other around her shoulders and drew her against him. Such a natural act, and she accepted his embrace without pulling back. She smelled of flowers from her perfume and wood smoke. “Mercy, child,” he said in his best imitation of Ella, “it’s as cold as a tomb in here.”

“It wasn’t last night.”~

How can my readers buy your book? 
Somewhere the Bells Ring is available in various eBook formats at The Wild Rose Press and will travel onto Amazon kindle, Barnes & Noble’s nookbook and other online booksellers. For more on me and my work please visit:

My website:

My blog:


  1. Thanks for having me on your lovely blog, Sarah.

  2. I love the idea of a romance set in the 60's of the Vietnam era, for many of us that was our time for the first blush of love so I will definitely check it out. I enjoy Christmas stories this time of year, often because this time of year gets crazy and one needs a place to escape to, what better place than a book.

  3. Thanks Fraoch. I couldn't agree more.

  4. Just love this excerpt, Beth. Love the concept of the whole story, from the era in which it's set to the room as cold as a tomb. Nothing like a good ghost story for Christmas!

  5. Sorry I'm late, Beth and Sarah. I had a sick little one yesterday and was not able to get here.

    Beth, I just loved that picture of you with your pets. How adorable!!!
    This is me wishing you all the best with this new release! I just love that cover too!

  6. I want to thank everyone for stopping in. My mother went into the hospital yesterday and I wasn't able to join you.

    Thank you Beth for agreeing to do the itnerview and I wish you all the luck your future can hold!!! Wonderful excerpt!!!