Interview with Emily Craftsman: Heroine in Isaac’s Decision

I’m almost finished with chapter 1 of Isaac’s Decision, and now I have a good idea of where the story is going.  The same is true for Shotgun Groom.  Shotgun Groom will not be a comedy.  I’m almost at chapter 2 in Shotgun Groom, and all I can say is chapter 2 gives April a very compelling reason to force Joel Larson into a marriage he doesn’t want, and chapter 2 is bound to be a rough one to write for that reason.

I plan to do character interviews for Joel, April, Isaac, and Emily as I write these books, but it depends on which character is “ready” to be interviewed on when I interview them.  😀

So up tonight is Emily Craftsman who is seventeen by the time Isaac’s Decision starts.

So Emily, I’ll start with a question that is bound to be on people’s minds when I post chapter one to give people an idea of where the story is headed.  Why Isaac Larson?  You have young men falling at your feet to court you.  Why not pursue someone who isn’t purposely ignoring you?

That’s just it.  Why is he ignoring me?  It wasn’t always this way.  When we were younger, he did pay attention to me.  In fact, he was the only boy who treated me as an equal.  The other boys couldn’t accept I was as smart–well, smarter–than them because I was a girl.

Really?  You’d never know Isaac even talked to you back then considering how he goes out of his way to avoid you today.

I don’t understand it either.  The last time I remember him choosing to speak to me was when we were twelve and his father came to pick him up early from the schoolhouse.  From then on, it’s as if Isaac didn’t even know me.  I mean, he knew me, but he wasn’t my friend anymore. 

Given all of that, why are you in love with him?

Because I sense he never wanted to stop being my friend.  It’s hard to explain.  There are times when he looks at me, and I know he wants to talk to me but can’t.

Are you sure you’re not making excuses for him? One day he was talking to you and the next, he’s not?  Maybe he’s a jerk who’s better off making someone else miserable.  I, for one, would never pursue a guy like that.

Well, I’m not you, so I’m not going to do things the way you would.  Besides, I know the type of books you write, and you do beta heroes.  Beta heroes aren’t jerks. 

Hey, I’ve done an alpha or two.  Jake Mitchell from An Inconvenient Marriage and Nathan Rudolph from What Nathan Wants are what I consider to be alphas. 

But at their core, they were nice.

I’m glad to hear you think so.  But back to Isaac.  I don’t see how you’re going to get him to open up to you.  He’s pretty determined to avoid you.

I realize I have a challenge ahead of me, but I don’t back down from challenges.  It might take some creative thinking, but I’ll come up with a way to find out what’s going on with him.

Maybe you should ask your father.  He might have an idea of what’s going on and why.

My father doesn’t like to talk about the Larsons.  Well, that’s not entirely true.  He’s talked with that family on occasion, but I can’t remember him talking to Isaac’s father.  Now that I think about it, it is strange.  Even Isaac’s mother will talk to my father.   Why is that?

Don’t you remember what happened in His Redeeming Bride when your real mother came back for you and you overheard her talking to your father?  

All I remember from that time was that she never loved me.  She admitted it out in the open.  I hated her after that.  I try not to think about it.

It’s okay to be upset about it.

And what good will it do to dwell on the past?  I can’t change what happened.  I’m just glad my step-mother loves me.

Have you thought about what would happen if you saw your real mother again?

No.  I never want to see her again.  The time she came to get me so she could get money is enough.  *narrows her eyes* Wait a minute.  You aren’t planning on bringing her into this book, are you?

I’m not sure.  It depends on how the plot unfolds as Isaac becomes overwhelmed by his newfound responsibilities.  I’m not sure how you’ll react to thing at that point. 

Meaning what? 

Meaning, I don’t know if you’ll run off or stay. 

I’ve never run away from anything in my life.  I can’t imagine that I would.  The book is about me ending up with Isaac.  It’s a romance.  I’m the heroine.  He’s the hero.  There’s a happy ending. 

While that’s true, everyone has their breaking point.  Isaac’s going to find his, and you might find yours as well.  The question is, what will you do when that moment comes?

It’s hard to say unless I know what moment you’re talking about.  If you can elaborate on it, I might be able to answer your question right now so you know how the book will go.

Nice try, Emily, but the best part of writing a book is not knowing how the characters will react until the scene comes up.  I have no idea how you’ll react.

But you know how Isaac will react to his crisis moment?

Yep.  He’s not as complicated as you are.  In every book I write, there’s a character who is harder for me to figure out.  Congratulations, Emily.  You’re that character in this book!

Did you want me to do a cheer or something because I don’t find this particularly amusing.  It sounds like you’re saying I’m difficult to work with.

Yes, you are going to be difficult to work with.  That’s why I can’t get a true feel for you.

And is there a difficult character in Shotgun Groom?

Believe it or not, it’s Joel Larson in that one.


Because I don’t know if he’ll protest the marriage for as long as I’m planning.

If he doesn’t protest the marriage for long, then you’ll be stuck with a novella instead of a full-length book.

No.  Secondary characters do a great job of providing conflict.  Granted, the romance writing “manual” insists the conflict must be between the hero and heroine, but I’ve found it’s more interesting when the two have to work through the tough situation instead of fighting or misunderstanding each other.

There you go.  I won’t run off.  Isaac and I will work together in whatever you have planned.

The problem with you, Emily, is that you have buried your feelings about the past so far down, they might come to the surface.  The conflict might come partly with Isaac’s struggles, which he’ll hide from you since he’s a man and thinks he needs to handle everything himself.  But another part of the conflict might come from your insecurities that stem from the past.

I don’t like the sound of that. 

All I can say is that a story doesn’t exist without conflict.  This interview has run longer than I thought it would.  If you feel inclined, we’ll meet again. 

Great.  Maybe you’ll tell me more about the stuff Isaac’s going to hide from me at that time.

Probably not.  That would spoil the book for others.  It’s been a pleasure, Emily.  I look forward to writing your book and finding out what you’ll choose to do.  😀

About Ruth Ann Nordin

Ruth Ann Nordin mainly writes historical western romances and Regencies. From time to time, she branches out to contemporaries romances and other genres (such as science fiction thrillers). For more information, please go to or check out
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4 Responses to Interview with Emily Craftsman: Heroine in Isaac’s Decision

  1. Rose Gordon says:

    Oh dear! She sounds like a spitfire! LOL My guess is, there’ll be a lot of secondary characters causing enough conflict in her book soon enough for her to be too worried about what’s happening in Shotgun Groom.

    By the way, she’s gorgeous!

    • One of my readers picked out her picture from a stock photo place because she fit the description of how her mother looked, and since she looks a lot like her mother, it fit. That is how I wished I look. LOL Romance is a fantasy. There’s no way the average woman looks like the women on the romance covers. When I think about it, TV and movies are a fantasy, too. I see those TV shows and movies where women who’ve had children look thin and great in a skimpy outfit and think of how outrageous it is. Sure, maybe if we all had tummy tucks, plastic surgery, someone styling our hair and doing our make-up every day, we’d look that great, too. I almost selected a photo of an overweight bride with a dorky looking guy but then thought, “No one will buy this book because people are drawn to pictures of attractive people.” Needless to say, I won’t be on any covers, nor will my husband. LOL

      Good grief. I’m in a rambling mood tonight. Anyway, before I ran off on that tangent, I was going to say that Emily is a spitfire, and she’ll do whatever she can to get Isaac. I wonder if she’ll piss some people off because she won’t be 100% sweet? My independent heroines tend to get the most complaints.

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