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Interview with R.H. Ramsey, author of “Just Beneath the Surface I”

Join R.H. Ramsey, author of the suspense novel, Just Beneath the Surface I, as she virtually tours the blogosphere May 1 – 25 2012 on her first virtual book tour with Pump Up Your Book!

Rhonda Ramsey


Rhonda Ramsey is a prolific new author who enjoys breathing passion and life into each and every character she creates. She is an avid writer with eleven completed novels, four novels near completion, and five short stories. She is also a military wife, mother of two, and student.

Over the course of seven years, Rhonda has diligently researched topics ranging from but not limited to; relationships, addiction, abuse, and mental illness. With a passion for people, helping, and learning, Rhonda’s zeal for inspiring others through her writing has also expanded to freelance writing and blogging; as she has her own blog, and enjoys contributing to other websites as well. She hopes to continue in her quest of inspiring others as well as learning from everyone she meets.

Her latest book is Just Beneath the Surface I.

Visit her blog at


Check out R.H. and her book at the following online locations:

Amazon | Smashwords Official Tour Page

The Interview

Could you please tell us a little about your book?

Thank you so much for having me! I would be happy to share a few things about my book.

Just Beneath the Surface I is a book about domestic violence, obsession, and much more.
Kendall, a loving mother of two, leaves a somewhat rocky relationship after fourteen years. She soon finds herself involved with a man who is shy, quirky, quiet, and at times, seems to be a pushover.

Soon after she marries this mysterious new man, he becomes very unpredictable and abusive. At times, she questions who she is, and feels as though her days are numbered.

Diamond is Kendall’s teenage daughter. Diamond is at the center of vicious gossip at school, she is hungry for attention, and seeking love in all of the wrong places. Diamond meets and develops deep feelings for a teacher’s aide; this teacher’s aide has a dark side, and soon, Diamond is in over her head. Both mother and daughter find themselves in a terrifying downward spiral.

Did something specific happen to prompt you to write this book?

Well. There was a moment where I realized my heart was heavy not only for victims of abuse or domestic violence, but my heart was heavy for those who were being judged in their situation. When I say judged, I am talking about the myths.

People who think that the victims of domestic violence are to blame for their own situations. People who think the victims of domestic violence deserve to be hurt, or like to be hurt – or else why stay?

These are just a couple of many things that stirred something inside of me.This prompted me to create a main character who was strong, confident, and very relatable. Something that I say often, and truly believe, is that with relatability comes empathy. With empathy comes less judgment.

Your biggest critic?

My biggest critic is definitely me. I could read through my books from sun up to sun down, and I will always find ways to beat myself up. I will always find reasons to not share what I have written. But how can you grow if you do not share? How can you learn if you don’t seek objective opinions? Or constructive criticism?

But yes – I am my own biggest critic. There is probably nothing anyone could say, that I have not already thought myself.

In the last year have you learned or improved on any skills?

In the past year, I have learned and improved on many skills. There is always more for me to learn, and I think I learn something new every day. But I am almost embarrassed to say, I learned a lot about how to properly puncuate dialogue. It is a little embarrassing because dialogue is probably my favorite part of writing!

I was so pleased and eager to learn more when a very kind woman named Dorothy pointed out some dialogue issues in one of my books. I corrected it, I studied it some more, and I would like to think I have improved.

Do you have any rituals you follow when finishing a piece of work?

When I am working on a book, from the outside looking in, it probably looks like complete chaos. I am probably working on finishing two books at once. I am probably not planning, and I am probably going on two or three nights without sleep.

The only time I have any sort of organization or ritual, is when I am stumped. And normally, the ending is not the trouble spot; the beginning is.

When I have a case of writer’s block, I sit down, and work chapter by chapter – sentence by sentence, using my phone to jot down ideas.

But first, I have to figure out what the conflict will be, and where it came from. I want to figure out how the conflict will be addressed. How the main character(s) will handle this conflict. How the conflict will be discussed in dialogue. I will go over it again, and again, until it seems realistic. Then finally, I will email it to myself one last time, put the challenging chapter in my book, and leap for joy!

What is the most important thing in your life right now?

May I name more than one thing? God, family, writing…and that’s always.

What are you currently working on?

I am currently preparing to self publish my novel, Where were you? This is the summary:
In Where were you, the paths of several strangers will collide, and become forever interwoven. Hearts will be both mended, and broken, as complex relationships are formed.

Christian Shane, a heavy hearted young man, is slowly becoming unglued. His home life is anything but orthodox; riddled with drugs, and an ominous feeling that what is left of his world will soon come crashing down upon him. In an instance, Christian’s life becomes more shrouded in confusion than ever before….he is face to face with his birth parents.

Although Christian is nothing that Nadia expected, he is more beautiful than she ever imagined. In her eyes, he is simply breathtaking; scars and all. But getting close to Christian is far from simple. Her son wants nothing more than to be left to his own devices. And just as it seems that Christian is a lost cause, Nadia father, Dr Will Chase takes one last shot at breaking through…

Dylan Monahan is a troubled young woman who has become a prisoner of her own stifling memories. Despite long, trying therapy sessions with Dr Will Chase, Dylan has yet to find peace. With the nudge of a gentle stranger, and an unexpected encounter with Dr Chase, Dylan is seeing herself more clearly than ever.

Do you have any advice for writers or readers?

The main thing I would suggest, is believe in yourself. If you wait for others to validate you, or expect for people to constantly cheer you on, you are not going to get very far. You will probably want to quit altogether. I would also say keep a healthy balance between confident and humble.

Is there an author that inspired you to write?

At a young age, I read I know why the caged bird sings, and I was deeply touched. I remember the way I felt, how inspired I was, and how much I enjoyed Maya Angelou’s metaphors. She is definitely an author/poet who has inspired me; probably more than I ever realized.

Is there anything you regret doing/not doing?

I regret not having more confidence, and not trying. I do not think it is wise to keep something that you are passionate about buried deep inside because of fear. So I definitely regret waiting so long to share my writing; I pour so much of myself into it. I regret not sharing sooner.

What is your favorite past time?

My favorite past time? Writing!



When Kendall Berkely takes a look in the mirror, she not only desperately wants to run away from the stranger staring back at her; but she also knows that her days are numbered. She can feel it in her bones, and has the bruises to prove it. To make matters worse, Kendall will soon discover that her seventeen year old daughter, Diamond is on a path nearly just as dangerous.

After the demise of the family unit she once knew, a distracted mother, and being forced to accept a new stepfather, Diamond finds herself knee deep in a multitude of mistakes. When Diamond finds herself more lonely than ever before she crosses paths with Bobby Lidell; a teacher’s aide with a dark side. Just as Diamond realizes that she is in over her head, her mother and father have already been notified, and will do everything in their power to protect her.

But what is lurking in the shadows will not stop until a vow has been kept; what is lurking just beneath the surface will come seeking revenge.

4 comments to Interview with R.H. Ramsey, author of “Just Beneath the Surface I”

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