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Friday, February 24, 2012


Long and Short Reviews is pleased to welcome Heide Katros, whose latest release is Mystical Viking, a paranormal historical novel. This is not Heide's first foray into the paranormal, however. In fact, she doesn't view things as paranormal—ESP runs in her family and, in the early 1700s, one of her family members was burned at the stake as a witch.

"She was all of seventeen years old. My guess is that she saw things that were about to happen and maybe they were bad and they declared her a witch," she explained. "After I met my husband and before I came to America I had this vivid dream of a blonde woman threatening to kill me. She said, 'If I can’t have him, you can’t either.' It was weird. I knew she spoke in a different language and my English was non-existent at the time, but I understood her threat. I remembered her pointing a pistol at me and she was standing on a lush lawn, something quite foreign to me. I woke up before the dream continued and thought nothing more of it. A year later, after I had come to America, I was at a fraternity dance with my husband and I saw her. So as we danced past her, I said, 'That’s her.' Mitch paled. He thought one of his friends had ratted him out, but when I told him I had seen her in a dream, he almost freaked. The woman did try to make my life miserable just as my dream predicted. She started to call our house and play soft music. So one day I just said, 'If you want to talk to my husband just ask.' She never called back."

Heide is a pantser and was once told by a well-known author she could never write that way. She written twenty novels "that way" with twelve of them being published.

"You could call me the Taylor Swift of romance and suspense," she said. "You cross me or cross my path you will be in my novels. You may not recognize yourself, but I know you. "

That brings us to her favorite TV show. Right now, she's enthralled with Person of Interest.

"I like the whole premise and don’t we all know that big brother is watching us in some way?" she asked rhetorically. "I also like The Big Bang. What’s not to like about four nerds who forever strike out with the ladies? Dancing With The Stars is also a favorite of mine, though I don’t think the judging is always fair. And I love to watch college football and basketball. I am also a big tennis fan, though I rather play than watch."

"What five modern conveniences would you want to have with you if you were stranded on an island?" I wondered.

"Actually, I am thinking here along the lines of Robinson Crusoe, which would leave me without electricity. Books would be my first choice. I know it’s not a convenience, but I can’t imagine my life without reading. Instead of conveniences, I’d rather have a boy Friday, well muscled, good looking with a shock of dark hair. He could do all those things and more than the four convenience choices left to me."

At the time of this interview, Heide was reading a novel by Cindy Gerard, With No Remorse.

"She is an excellent writer who bases most of her novels on all branches of the Armed Forces and her heroes are very yummy. I would say, however, that Judith McNaught is my favorite author, though I have not seen anything of hers in recent years," she told me. "McNaught has a natural gift of drawing the reader into her stories. She writes very sensuously and ever so heart warming."

Heide writes at a hand-carved desk her French grandmother used over 120 years ago. She, too, was gifted with second sight and was an amazing business woman.

"I have one of her photos next to me on the wall and have her smiling down on me," she said.

Heide never thought she would become a writer, however. She saw a headline in a Sunday newspaper that said, "So you think you can write a novel?" She thought she could and created Bewitching Angel which placed in the 1999 Indiana Low Country Golden Opportunity Contest.

"I had an opportunity to get a contract with Zebra at the time, but I didn’t know how to type. I had written it in long hand. By the time I found someone to type it for me Zebra had lost interest and I was too much of a beginner to know what to do," she told me.

Heide gets ideas from the news and incorporates them into her stories, never quite knowing what she will write on any particular day. She might start a conversation between two characters and the story will take an unexpected turn that surprises her.

"My characters evolve as I begin to plot. Their names seem to pop into my head out of nowhere," she explained. "My titles come to me the same way. I am just finishing a contemporary romantic suspense story about a jilted bride, but that is hardly the gist of the story. Make Me No Promises is loaded with twists and turns. I know this may sound weird, but I start to write and once I have finished a scene, I will go back and research the particulars for authenticity."

She already has a sequel in mind for Make Me No Promises titled Sweet Redemption, a take-off on one of the characters in the previous book.

"Before I start the sequel, I promised my good friend and fellow writer Kate Hofman a short novel for an anthology she is planning to put together. I already have a few pages and a definite idea where it will go and the title will be Snow Roses."

Unlike most authors who like to write when they are fresh, Heide told me her mind is too active in the mornings and translates everything into either German or French, which makes it difficult to focus. So, she waits until she's a little tired, and the Muse can flow.

"I like complete silence, though I can tune out anything, if conversation goes on behind me. I don’t have the luxury of a set time to write. Whenever my husband needs help or my grandchildren need me, I set my writing aside," she said. "But the story will continue to develop in my head and when I can sit down to write, it will flow without interruption."

About the Author:
I grew up in a small town near the French border. My dad was an old-fashioned country doctor, and no, he didn’t drive a horse and buggy, he always drove a snazzy car. I guess I inherited the love for nice vehicles and fast driving from him.

Living in a small town like that forces you to grow up fast, because patients don’t care whether you are a kid, if they need help. They expect you to get it for them.

My father passed away just after I’d turned thirteen. It turned our lives upside down, but the saving grace came in the form of a guardian, who told my mother to move to a large city, so we could be exposed to theater and a better education.

After the move to Heidelberg on the Neckar River my mother started to take exotic vacations with us. One such trip took us to the Island of Rhodes, Greece. I met my husband during that trip. We were married two years later and have two grown sons and two grandchildren.

Find the author online at:


FB: Heide Katros

Twitter: @hasele

When Britta Viborgh gets her first look at the carnage that had once been her village, one warrior stands out among the rubble. She knows he is responsible for the massacre and swears that she will hunt him down and avenge her clan.

Ulf Sorensen is sick at heart. His second sight has let him down and brought him too late to help his friend. The last and only honor he can bestow upon Swen Viborgh and his clan is to send them in a cloud of smoke to Valhalla. While he waits for the pyre to catch flame, he is assailed by the eerie feeling of being watched. He shakes the sensation off and rides away with his men.

But Britta and Ulf are destined to meet again, and Britta finds herself at the mercy of her sworn enemy.


Diane Craver said...

I enjoyed learning more about you and your books, Heide! Congrats on your success as a writer!

Denise said...

Such a great interview Heidi! Thanks
for sharing yourself with us. :)

Diane D White said...

Heide,You write wonderful stories and I hope to read this one soon. I have several of your books on my shelf and can attest to the fact you are prolific and talented. Mystical Viking awaits me!
Best Regards,

Susan Blexrud said...

You go, Heide! The Taylor Swift of romance writing, eh? Cute.

Love ya,

Heide Katros said...

Diane Craver, I am using your full name, because Diane Davis White also left a comment. Thank you darling. I immerse myself in my stories, I live in the moment. I remember going over the edits of Pirate Child and I cried when I read certain scene. Then I had to laugh, because duh, you wrote that yourself! In Click, Click, Delete I thought I knew who did it, but it took me to page 245 before it dawned on me who really did it lol
So thank you for reading about me. You can also leave a comment on my blog.Thank you and best wishes.Heide

Heide Katros said...

Denise, thank you for your comment. And as always I am a stickler about my name lol It HEIDE and is the German word for Heather. My full first name is Heidemarie (like Rosemarie)
Best wishes

Heide Katros said...

Diane D White, you are a wonderful author in your own right and an amazing cover artist who created Mystical Viking and an even more super cover for Make Me No Promises. Wow

Heide Katros said...

Susan, thank you for taking the time to comment. Hope your Vampire series are doing great. Yep, and you better watch out, because I do mean that no one crosses me or my path unnoticed'

Miriam Newman said...

Great interview, Heide, and that's fascinating (and tragic) that you had an ancestor burned at the stake as being a witch. Half my family wouldn't be around if that practice had continued. As for a pantser not being able to write that way, ack, why didn't someone tell me that 12 books ago??? I could have saved myself a lot of trouble! You just keep on pantsing while we keep on reading your books.

Heide Katros said...

I have read all of her books and now reading the Mystical Viking and she still tends to amaze me and I am proud of her, Mitch, her husband

Deirdre O'Dare & Gwynn Morgan said...

I read an early version of Bewitching Angel as a contest judge ages ago and when I learned English was not Heide's first language I was blown away! She is an awesome writer and an even better friend!! I feel blessed to have met her and her dashing husband, Mitch and become friends with them both! I always enjoy her novels, each one packed with action and excitement and no two alike!

Heide Katros said...

thank you all for taking the time to comment:-) Miriam is a good friend to have, even though we only know each other through e-mail and she is a fantastic editor. Gaye is an awesome writer in her own right. Find her under Gwynne Morgan or Deidre O'Dare. She writes for everyone's taste:-)I feel blessed to have so many friends. And do check out Make Me No Promises, now available on Kindle Nook and in Paperback.
Thanks and best wishes, Heide

Heide Katros said...

Lou, I posted it for you. Thank you for your comment. Sei lieb umarmt
Deine Heide

Every time I read your blog and interviews, I learn more about you, my friend. I’ve read several of your books, including Mystical Viking. You have a wonderful gift of writing and creating characters of interest. Heide, keep writing and we’ll keep reading.

Hugs, Lou Kaunzinger