May I introduce: Susan Horsnell "Blind Achievement"

 
Blind Achievement
by
Susan Horsnell

Please make Susan Horsnell feel very welcome! She's another great Australian Author, who ... yes she does admit it herself ... prefers to write about Indians and Cowboys :-)

But the main character in her current book is neither. He's blind. And just from reading and preparing this post, I know what I will add to my TBR list! I hope you all will too.


– Your story is set in the US. What made your choose that location?

My books are set in the US, mostly Texas, as I feel I have a real affinity for the state. I must have live a previous life there I think. I wanted to write using Indians, Cowboys, Marshalls, Sheriff's and Ranches. Although Australia has a fascinating past, it doesn't have this sort of history. I grew up watching John Wayne and Audi Murphy cowboy movies with my dad and absolutely loved them. I guess they fired my imagination.

 

– You’re a retired nurse. How much of your experience do you “use” in your books?

I haven't used much at all until Blind Acceptance and Blind Achievement. In my other books I drew on a little of my knowledge for accidents/illness but with the 2 Blind books, I drew on my experience gained from working with the blind. Some of the teaching methods in these books are how we were taught. By understanding blindness, we could empathise with the individuals we worked with. It was heartbreaking at times, for the families as well as newly blinded victims. I have tried to convey the denial and anger in my books. I have also attempted to show, the blind are just as mentally alert as someone who can see, and capable of achieving great things. These books were set in the 1800s in the US because Mary Ingalls had made the Boston School for the Blind famous, schools for the blind were much more prevalent there than here in Australia at this time.

 

– Tell us a bit about your current project.

My current project is co-ordinating an anthology with 16 of the very best Western Romance authors in the US, Canada and Australia. The short stories will be an example of our individual writing and hopefully readers will be encouraged to read our other novels. The anthology stories will all have a Western Romance theme but that is where the likeness stops. We have stories set in the past, present, paranormal etc. I have already received a number of the stories and had the privilege of reading them, they are terrific. At $1.99 this book will be terrific value.
 
Blurb
The sequel to the Award Winning – Blind Acceptance.
Phillip Johnson has been blind since the age of six after sustaining a head injury in a wagon accident.

Growing up on a ranch outside of Austin hasn't been easy for the young man but he has thrived with the loving help of his Step-Mother, Rachel, and the faithful support of his father, Luke.
At 18 years old, he has made the decision to head to Macarthur to attend the Wyoming College for the Blind. He plans to study Civil Government Law and Political Economics.
It is here that he meets Belinda and he falls deeply in love with her. Belinda hides a dark and dangerous secret.
A ruthless man is obsessed with owning her. This threat has the power to ruin their relationship and put their lives in jeopardy.
Can they overcome such obstacles and find happiness together?
 
BIO
I grew up in the Western Suburbs of Sydney in the 50's and 60's.

My parents are originally from the Newcastle-Under-Lyme area of England and came to Australia in 1952 as £10 poms. They came under a migration scheme to help Australia with workers.
My father was a Painter and Decorator and I was the eldest of five children.
I met my husband, Robert, in 1973 and we married in March 1974; we were both 18 years old. We have two wonderful sons, gorgeous daughters-in-law and five incredible grandchildren. We have been extremely blessed.
I was a Nurse, a career that spanned more than 35 years. During my career I specialised in caring for people with Alzheimer’s type Dementia, an area that fascinates me despite how heartbreaking it can be. My dear father-in-law is unfortunately afflicted with this disease and now resides in a Nursing Home. In the not too distant future I am hoping to pen a novel incorporating some of the stories I have heard from these amazing people. Part of my career was with the blind and I also cared for severely disabled children for a while too.
When I retired 4 years ago I decided it was time to get the stories out of my head and onto paper. From there I just hoped my stories were interesting and well written enough to attract readers.
It is difficult being a new author now that anyone can publish a book. I can understand readers’ reticence to read Indie authors but hopefully they will give people like me a chance. I find as an avid reader, you can be pleasantly surprised most of the time. I can’t imagine sticking to just one or two authors and just because an author has a publisher doesn’t make them good. I have certainly read some terrible books which have been published by some of the largest companies.
I do hope readers enjoy my books and would love them to leave reviews.
Links:

Blind Achievement : http://amzn.com/B00GW5NCMK

 
Excerpt
Six months had passed and Phillip was thoroughly miserable. Teachers favoured him for his good nature and excellent grades while other students taunted him mercilessly for it. He thanked the Lord daily for his friendship with Daniel. Without him school would be unbearable and he would be on the next train back to the ranch.
He was now familiar with the classrooms and labyrinth of hallways so he was able to get around if Daniel was required elsewhere.
It had been a long day and he tapped his way back to his room. He was startled from his thoughts by an ear piercing scream. Coming to an abrupt stop he listened. Sounds of a scuffle and banging came from what he knew was a classroom ahead. He approached and threw open the door without hesitation.
“What the hell? Get out!” a gruff voice bellowed.
“Please help me.” A girl’s agonized plea tore at his heart.
“What’s going on?” Phillip demanded to know.
“None of your damned business, half-wit. Get out.” Phillip could not place the voice.
“Let me go,” she screamed again.
“Let the young lady go.” Phillip said angrily. “Come here to me Miss.”
He could hear her struggling to get free.
“I have asked you to let her go. I will not ask again.” Phillip loaded his voice with menace.
The man guffawed. “Do you really think a blindy like you can stop me?”
Phillip used the man’s voice to help him move closer.
The girl took advantage of her captor being distracted and bit down hard on his arm. He yelped with pain, and she wrenched free of his grip and launched herself into Phillip’s arms.
The air rushed from his lungs as she collided with his chest. He wrapped his arm protectively around her trembling body as she sobbed into his shirt.
Phillip lifted his cane as a warning for the man not to approach. “I am taking her to speak with Mr Carver. I expect he will also want to speak with you.”
The girl in his arms continued to tremble and sob.
“Come with me. We’ll ensure this never happens again,” he told the girl gently.
She moved from his grasp and wiped the tears from her eyes. Mr Collins, I will make you sorry for this,” she promised bravely.
“As if Mr Carver would believe you over a teacher he respects and trusts. I will tell him you made advances towards me,” he snarled.
The girl grasped hold of Phillip’s hand. Her obvious terror fired his anger.
“You forget, sir. I was here.”
“You’re blind,” he sneered. “How would you know what was happening?”
“A girl doesn’t scream like that if she is a willing participant.” Phillip tightened his hold on her hand and pulled her from the room.
“We will check Mr Carver’s office first. He often works late so he may not have gone down to his cottage yet.” Phillip led her back down the hall he had just come from.
“What is your name?” he asked.
“I’m Belinda. Thank you for rescuing me.”
“My name is Phillip and you are welcome. I’m just happy I came along when I did. What happened?”
 
 
 

11 comments:

  1. Another nice interview. Well done, Ladies.

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  2. Great interview. I can vouch for Blind Acceptance and Blind Achievement being great books as I have read them both. Sue's knowledge from working with the blind certainly shines through.

    Regards

    Margaret

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    1. Thank you Margaret for your continued support

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    2. Thanks Margaret. When I prepared the post I knew I had to read the books as well.

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  3. Fun interview. Always a treat to learn more about a writer and why they write a particular book.

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    1. Thank you Paty for dropping by and for your ongoing support

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    2. Thanks for stopping by Paty!

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  4. It is so much fun finding out the person behind the story. Thanks, both of you. :) Good luck with the Blind series.

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    1. Thanks for stopping by, Morgan! :-)

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