Shannon here: Kathy Harris shares her inspiration for her latest Romantic Suspense, Deadly Conclusion. Comment or answer the question in this post to enter the drawing for an autographed print copy, U.S. only. Deadline: Nov 26th, 11:59 pm central time. Here’s Kathy:
The Story Behind the Story: Deadly Conclusion by Kathy Harris
After I finished the first draft of Deadly Conclusion on an almost impossible deadline, my agent’s first words were, ‘It’s a miracle.’ And I agreed with her. I had wanted to give up so many times during the long nights and early mornings that define writing on a tight deadline. It was only knowing that so many people were praying for me that kept me going.
And then God stepped in.
When I needed information about military war dogs, the first person to come to mind was a business acquaintance from 2013. I searched online for his updated contact information and couldn’t find it. And then, out of the blue, I received an email from him. His help was a literal Godsend.
It was a different story when it came to Search and Rescue research. I had assumed that would be the easy part, because I have a lot of friends and acquaintances who are dog breeders, trainers, and even past SAR handlers. When none of them had the information I needed, I started making cold calls. But no one had the time or inclination to help. That’s when I knew that God was nudging me away from a technical SAR story and moving me toward a restoration story.
I’m so glad He did.
I have had this book on my mind for years, but when I finally sat down to write it, it didn’t turn out as I had planned. What started as my idea, turned into His idea. And, in the end, it became a story about two fathers who, although both imperfect, sacrificed themselves for their children. That thought brought tears to my eyes when I realized how it mirrored our Heavenly Father’s love in giving His perfect Son to be sacrificed for each of us.
The opening scenes of Deadly Conclusion were inspired by the real-life rescue of a twelve-year-old Boy Scout in the Blue Ridge Mountains of North Carolina. After three days of a massive search party trying to find him—and when the boy’s chances of survival were diminishing, a Shiloh Shepherd dog by the name of Gandalf and his handler, Misha Marshall, who were on their first official SAR run—just like Titan—found the twelve-year-old boy safe. Gandalf and Misha were immediately thrust into the public limelight, and the story became personal for me when I learned that my Shiloh Shepherd, Glocken, was a close relative to Gandalf.
Question for Readers: What kind of ‘divine detour’ has God sent you on recently?
About Kathy: Kathy Harris has worked as a marketing director in the Nashville music industry for more than 30 years. Her first professional writing job was freelancing entertainer biographies. Later she wrote and co-wrote news stories and columns for various music publications, eventually contributing to anthologies for Thomas Nelson, Tyndale House, and Chicken Soup for the Soul. Kathy’s debut novel, The Road to Mercy, was released in 2012 by Abingdon Press. Deadly Conclusion, her third book in The Deadly Secrets series, released from Iron Stream Fiction on November 1, 2022. Kathy has regularly hosted music and literary guests on her Divine Detour blog since 2010. Learn more & connect:
About the book – Deadly Conclusion: In the thrilling conclusion of the “Deadly Secrets” series, dog trainer Keely Lambert breaks in Titan, a new shepherd, during a rescue mission to find little Conner Wells. Aided by childhood friend, Beau Gardner of the TBI and Conner’s uncle, Keely finds the boy deep inside Beaman Park.
But Conner is not all that Keely found. On the way back to the welcome center, she notices something sticking out of the dirt—the military dog tags of her father who disappeared more than two decades before.
The discovery sets Keely on a hunt to unearth her father’s killer, only to be thwarted by multiple setbacks—the murder of Beau’s father, the kidnapping of her mother, and her kennel being set on fire in the middle of the night. After Keely is kidnapped herself, Beau leads a manhunt to find her before the outcome reaches a deadly conclusion.
Can’t wait for the drawing? Worried you won’t win? Interested in Kathy’s other titles?
Come back Nov 18th for Carole Brown!