Friday, 14 June 2013

He Belongs To Me Blog Tour: Author Interview with Theresa Rizzo

Hello, Therians!
I am honored to have the wonderful, Theresa Rizzo, stopping by for a chat today :) Check out the interview below and get to know the author of He Belongs To Me, a little better.

Be sure to check in tomorrow when I will be reviewing this amazing book in my second stop in the He Belongs To Me Blog Tour, brought to you by JKSCommunications.

He Belongs to Me is a love story . . . a tale of betrayal and deception and of a young mother's determination to recover what belongs to her.

Forced to leave her baby and tricked into relinquishing her parental rights, four years later Catherine Boyd is back and she'll do anything to regain custody of her son--even reconcile with the husband falsely accused of killing their son's twin.

All in the name of love for a little boy, generations of pain and tragedy are exposed in a courtroom drama.

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Hi Theresa,

Thanks so much for joining us today!

Hi Roxy,

Thank you so much for reading and reviewing He Belongs to Me and for having me on your blog!


  1. Tell us a bit more about yourself.

I married my high school sweetheart thirty years ago and I have four great kids-- 19-26yrs old.  I’m a transplanted Michigander.  I love Michigan and Midwestern people, but the winters are G-R-A-Y and L-O-N-G.  Just can’t compete with Colorado sunshine and stunning mountains!


  1. Describe yourself in three words.

Kind, creative, determined.


  1. What five things do you never leave home without?

Wallet, cell phone, keys, sunglasses, sweater/jacket


  1. What do you do when you’re not writing?

I’m not one of those authors totally consumed with writing 24/7.  I am very active in writers groups—running The Sandy Writing Contest , co-coordinating the Crested Butte Writers Conference, and helping judge other writing contests.  It’s a ton of fun helping others realize their dreams! Then I love walking/hiking with my pup and hubby. Recently I’ve gotten into making mosaics with my tile saw.  And two of my three girls are getting married in the next 1.5 years, so helping with wedding preparations.  Then there’s always travel to visit family, reading, playing cards, working in the yard, thinking about getting back into golf and tennis . . .Oh and watching movies!


  1. Who/What inspired you to start writing?

Truth? Though being a stay-at-home mom is a laudable profession, I found it a thankless job (at the time) and living for my kids and husband was sucking the life out of me—all my fault by the way.  Writing was a wonderful creative intelligent outlet and it fed my soul and made me a much happier person and better mother and wife.


  1. What has been the most rewarding experience on the road to being published?

The most rewarding thing on the road to being published is the wonderful, generous writers I’ve met and befriended through the years.


  1. What is the best advice you’ve been given as an author?

FINISH the book. Just make the story the best you can at the time and then move on to the next book.


  1. What advice would you give to aspiring authors?

Yes.  Don’t expect this to be easy. Spend the time learning the craft. Be realistic. Realize that writing is the entertainment industry and subjectivity reigns. Talent doesn’t necessarily mean anything. There’s a LOT to learn, but writers are generous, fun wonderful people. Go to conferences and be an active part of a writers group.


  1. Who are your favorite authors to read?

A few are Kaki Warner, Jodi Picoult, Harlan Coben, Jodi Picoult, Susan Wiggs and dozens more.


  1. What research did you have to do for He Belongs to Me?

I researched tons of things from Chicago neighborhoods and shaken baby syndrome, to court procedural.  I did a lot of research with regards to the social worker and legal aspects of this story. The internet is such a blessing because not only could I find TONS of information there, but it gave me resources so I could email experts in the fields to double-check my facts. 

It’s very important to me that I’m as accurate as can be—or at least I want to know where I’m taking creative license.  Re the legal scenes, I must credit my sister for how well they came out.  Jayne was a trial lawyer for decades and very patiently answered all my questions and read and reread my scenes for accuracy.


  1. Are any of your characters based on real people?

To be honest, yes.  Nothing in the circumstances were remotely similar, but Thomas is based loosely on a guy I had a crush on as a young kid. I didn’t know him very well and doubt he even knew I existed, but he was really sweet to me, and a good person. He was smart, athletic, and handsome. He was a guy with integrity and principles—even as a teenager. I admired him a lot.


  1. Who is your favorite character, and why?

I’m torn between Catherine and Thomas. I have a great deal of sympathy for each and can identify with them both.  I can’t choose.

  1. Are you working on any special projects at the moment?

I’m revising and polishing my next book, Just Destiny, coming out early next year.

Jenny is a beautiful young woman whose seemingly perfect marriage to Gabe is shattered by a tragic accident that leaves her husband brain dead. Devastated at the sudden loss, she decides to preserve the best of their love by harvesting Gabe’s sperm for later insemination.

But her husband’s powerful, grieving uncle, the man who raised him, thinks of Jenny as a gold digger and is willing to risk exposing long-held family secrets in court to stop her.

The prospect of a grueling trial tests Jenny’s resolve, until an unexpected ally comes to her aid giving her the opportunity to win and the possibility of a second chance at happiness. 


Theresa Rizzo is an award-winning author who writes emotional stories that explore the complexity of relationships and families through real-life trials. Born and raised in Grosse Pointe, Michigan, she now lives outside of Boulder, Colorado with her husband of thirty years.
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