I am happy to introduce Lucie Ulrich today. Lucie lives in sunny Florida with her husband, and they enjoy traveling together. Her first book with Astraea Press, The Rose Ring, released just this week, and she graciously agreed to share with us about herself and her writing, as well as a glimpse of her new book!
PK: What do you do when you’re not writing?
LU: Though I do spend a LOT of time writing, I do enjoy some down time. I read, but not as much as I used to, and not as much as I should. My husband took early retirement at the beginning of the year, so I don’t have all the free time I used to—not that I’m complaining. We intend to do a lot of driving in the near future. I enjoy going on photography shoots with my hubby, and spending as much time with my grown children as possible.
PK: What would your fans be surprised to know about you?
LU: Even though I’ve lived in the United States since I was a teenager, I’m still a Canadian citizen.
PK: What’s your idea of an ideal vacation?
LU: That’s easy—getting in the car and driving. A perfect vacation would be a month in a cabin (mountain or lakeside preferably) enjoying the simpler life, scenery, and wildlife. Since we do love road trips, there would be a number of those thrown in as well.
PK: How did you choose the genre you write in?
LU: Honestly, I think the genre picked me. When I first started writing, I had teenage children, and figured YA would be something I would be good at. I wasn’t. Ideas came, but nothing came of the ideas. As a Christian, my goal was always toward including some sort of positive, inspirational message in my writing. Since teenagers didn’t work, I moved to the slightly older generation, and discovered that it worked for me.
PK: How did you come up with the title?
LU: In the original rendition of this book, which is quite different from the final product, the bride was given a wedding rose gold wedding ring that just so happened to be her size. When I changed the setting, characters, and pretty much everything but the in-name-only marriage scenario, my thought was that there would be a rose gold ring that was a family heirloom, but as I wrote the story, that didn’t pan out. I won’t say when the ring comes into play, but the name stuck from early in the first writing.
PK: What has been the toughest criticism given to you as an author?
LU: Writing is not something I ever studied or aspired to, so when the notion hit me, I dove in with both feet. I received a lot of criticism while a member of an online critique group—some good, some bad, some harsh. But the toughest thing I read was from my first Amazon review of my first novel. The gentleman said the story was predictable. OUCH! I’ll admit that it made me a little angry for a while, but as I continued to write and hopefully improve, I realized he was right. I never want my writing to be predictable, and I thank that gentleman for being honest with me.
Micah took Sky’s hand and they hurried across the street, stopping in front of the double wooden doors. He reached into his pocket and pulled out a shiny gold ring. “Here, it’s a bit big for me, but it’ll do for today.”
She held out her hand and he dropped it into her palm. They’d gone shopping a few days ago and he’d bought her a thin gold band, but not one for himself. The fact that he only planned on wearing the ring for the ceremony solidified her in-name-only status. “Your dad’s?”
Sky fingered the ring. “Other than this nick, it looks brand new.”
“That nick nearly cost Dad his finger. He got it hooked on a piece of farm equipment shortly after he and Mom married. He made Noah and me swear never to wear any jewelry while working.”
“Did he ever wear it again?”
“And your mom didn’t mind?”
“Not that I was aware of. Then again, I was just a kid.”
At least she’d have a good excuse for why her husband didn’t wear a wedding band. She, on the other hand, would wear hers proudly. He might be a lug, but for the next two years he’d be her lug. “We’d better go. Don’t want to keep the judge waiting.”
With a will that reads like a piece of fiction, the return of his long-lost brother, and the possibility of losing the family ranch, Micah Cooper calls on high school friend, Sky Baxter, to bail him out of a bad situation.
Though her brain tells her no, Sky’s heart says yes. She accepts Micah’s in-name-only proposal, knowing it’s unlikely anything permanent will come of it. She’s been in love with him since the ninth grade, and if he hasn’t figured it out by now, there’s little chance he ever will.
When an unexpected kiss ignites a spark, giving Micah hope for a possible future with Sky, a tragic accident threatens to take it all away. Torn between following his heart, doing the right thing, and forgiving the past, Micah is lost in a whirlwind of pain and emotions. Will he make it through the next two years, or will a long-kept family secret be the undoing of them all?
Lucie can be found at her website, and on Facebook, Twitter, and Goodreads.
The Rose Ring can be purchased at Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Kobo, and other ebook outlets.