Interview with Cyndi Tefft, Author of Between

Cyndi Tefft is the author of Between, a paranormal romance with the grim reaper.  Set in Scotland, the protagonist makes an unpleasant discovery about the love of her life.  Not quite sure how you get beyond the fact that his job is transporting the dearly departed to the afterlife.  Cyndi dropped by the virtual offices to chat about her book.

[Manga Maniac Café] Describe yourself in 140 characters or less.

[Cyndi Tefft] Outgoing, friendly, goofy, kind, easily shocked, obsessive, lover of all things Scottish, dramatic, compassionate, one who needs decaf!

[MMC] Can you tell us a little about your book, Between?

[CT] Between is a young adult paranormal romance about a modern American girl who dies in a car accident and the 18th century Scottish Highlander who comes to take her to heaven. Here’s the blurb from the cover:

It just figures that the love of Lindsey Water’s life isn’t alive at all, but the grim reaper, complete with a dimpled smile and Scottish accent. 

After transporting souls to heaven for the last 300 years, Aiden MacRae has all but given up on finding the one whose love will redeem him and allow him entry through the pearly gates.

Torn between her growing attraction to Aiden and heaven’s siren song, Lindsey must learn the hard way whether love really can transcend all boundaries.

[MMC] How did you come up with the concept and the characters for the story?

[CT] I wanted to write a good versus evil story, but I thought angels and demons were overdone. So I started mulling over other ways to bring heaven into the equation without making the character an angel. The Transporter idea allowed me the flexibility to create a whole realm between heaven and earth where I could make up the rules.

I’m also a sucker for a good love story, so anything I write has to be heavy on the romance. I’d been reading Diana Gabaldon’s Outlander series and fell in love with Scotland, so that’s why the hero is Aiden MacRae, a Scot from the 18th century!

[MMC] What have you learned about yourself through your characters?

[CT] Lindsey’s parents are divorced (as are mine) and though I never intended it, I was processing some emotions associated with that while writing about the event in Lindsey’s life. There is a scene in the book where her father is crying and I found myself with tears on my own cheeks after writing that part. It was a healing experience in some ways, working out buried emotions through the characters.

[MMC] Which of your characters are you most like?

[CT] Lindsey is very much like me, as a matter of fact. However, I intentionally gave her traits I don’t have (like the fact that she can cook and I could burn water). Still, the way she thinks and reacts is often how I would, under the circumstances. There is a little of me in each of the characters (both good and bad).

[MMC] Why do you think paranormal romances are so popular with readers?  What do you like best about the genre?

[CT] Let’s face it: life can be a drag sometimes. Reading is a wonderful escape from the daily grind. Paranormal romance is even more of an escape, since not only can we dream about hunky guys, but they can have super powers, too! There’s a reason why every girl wanted to be Lois Lane when Clark Kent donned the superman cape (dating myself, I know, but you get the idea).

In a paranormal romance, you know there will be a love story but there’ll be a fantastic element as well, that takes you out of your world (away from the demands of bills, tests, diapers, what-have-you) and into someplace magical. What’s not to love??

[MMC] If you had to pick one book that turned you on to reading, which would it be?

[CT] Strangely enough, I’d have to say the Twilight series got me into reading. I was more of a movie-watcher before I read that series. It made me yearn for more romantic tales and ultimately led me to create my own. Since I took up reading (and writing), I have hardly watched any movies at all!

[MMC] What do you like to do when you aren’t writing?

[CT] Two of my favorite things to do are singing and travel. I sing at church twice a month (and the occasional special service). As for travel, my hubby and I were able to go to Europe for the first time last year. We visited France and Scotland (Eilean Donan Castle was the highlight of the trip)! I made a video of some photos I took of Scotland.

I also love to play ping pong (and some might even say I’m not half bad)! At my last job, I played every day at lunch with people who routinely wiped the floor with me. That just spurred me on, since I have an over-developed competitive spirit. This video is one of my favorites!

Here are some ways to connect with me:

Thanks for having me on the blog. I had a great time!

[MMC] Thanks, Cyndi!

Between is available now, both as an ebook and in print.  You can order it by clicking the handy widget below.