GUEST BLOG: Killer Instincts by Elizabeth Goddard Plus Giveaway!

This morning I finished up answering interview questions for a blog post. One of the quirky or fun facts I included was that I hate killing people in my stories. Hello. I write romantic suspense. I thought this would be a perfect topic to explore for a blog post because let’s be honest—this statement deserves an explanation. I’ve made my career on writing romantic suspense novels for both Love Inspired Suspense and Revell, and there’s no getting around this—people must die. My readers expect murder and mayhem (though I don’t write cozy mysteries).

This troubling aspect of my genre bothered me early on. After a few novels, I finally asked other fellow romantic suspense authors if killing people in their stories disturbed them. Everyone responded in the negative. Apparently, I’m the only author troubled by killing off fictional characters.

I’ve had to explore the big white elephant question on the page—am I writing in the wrong genre perhaps? But the answer is definitively no. I’m writing in the correct genre—I love romantic suspense and I feel comfortable creating intrigue and plot twists and surprises, in building up the tension. So what if I don’t like the murder aspect—I don’t have killer instincts. That’s a good thing, right? But it means I must remind myself that someone needs to die. As much as I don’t like killing characters off, I’ve had moments when my LIS editor has asked me to pull back on the body count. Ha! Imagine.

A bigger question I need to ask—Why does it bother me to murder characters when they’re only fictional? They don’t exist in the real world. I think this reaction stems from the fact that I’m emotionally connected to my story and my characters when I’m writing. I’m invested in creating characters who are practically living and breathing and ready to jump off the pages, so it feels real when someone dies. If pain grips me as I write, then I must trust that my readers will also feel the emotion in my stories—even be disturbed when a character dies. If I give my readers a powerful emotional experience, then I’ve done my job as a writer, and, in the end, I’m willing to kill to give readers what they want.

About The Book

Rocky Mountain Courage: Book 2
Publication Date: November 2, 2021

Criminal psychologist Erin Larson’s dreams of a successful career come to a screeching halt when she nearly loses her own life in a boating accident on Puget Sound and then learns that her mother tried to commit suicide. She leaves her job as a criminal psychologist to care for her mother in Montana. At least she is able to produce her podcast, which focuses on solving missing persons cold cases.

Nathan Campbell’s father was investigating such a case when he was shot, and now Nathan needs to enlist Erin’s help to solve the case. She’s good at what she does. The only problem? She’s his ex.

As the two dig deeper, it becomes clear that they, too, are being targeted–and that the answers to their questions are buried deep within the past Erin struggles to explain and longs to forget.

The race is on for the truth in this gripping and complex tale of suspense, intrigue, and murder from USA Today bestselling author Elizabeth Goddard.



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This is a Rafflecopter giveaway hosted by Partners in Crime Virtual Book Tours for Elizabeth Goddard. and Revell. There will be ONE (1) winner for this tour. The winner will receive ONE (1) physical copy of both Present Danger & Deadly Target by Elizabeth Goddard. This giveaway is open only to residents in the US or Canada. The giveaway runs from November 1 through December 5, 2021. Void where prohibited.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

About The AuthorElizabeth Goddard. is the USA Today bestselling and award-winning author of more than fifty novels, including Present Danger and the Uncommon Justice series. Her books have sold over one million copies. She is a Carol Award winner and a Daphne du Maurier Award finalist. When she’s not writing, she loves spending time with her family, traveling to find inspiration for her next book, and serving with her husband in ministry.


Blog Tour Schedule

Dayna Linton
Dayna Linton
Dayna is the owner of not only Novels Alive but of Day Agency, a full-service self-publishing agency for independent authors. She has been assisting independent authors to achieve their dreams of becoming published authors for over 15 years. From New York Times and USA Today Bestselling authors to the first-time author to every author in between. Dayna is a self-professed bibliophile. While dancing has always been her first love, reading came as a very, very close second, with gardening coming in as a close third. Dayna is also the divorced mom of four adult children and a very proud grandma. She is also a web designer, social media specialist, book blogger, and reviewer. She's a long-time Disney lover and a Utah Jazz, Utah Utes, and Dallas Cowboys fan. See Dayna's reviews here: Dayna's Reviews


  1. GREAT guest post! Thanks you for this!
    “Apparently, I’m the only author troubled by killing off fictional characters.” I am so glad you admit to that. As a reader, I get very emotionally involved and attached to the characters. I hate it when they die (most of the time). So when you stated all that, above, it made me feel really good about you as an author!

    • Hi Wendy! Now I feel so much better too. Ha! I thought–oh, they’re going to think something’s wrong with me. But honesty is always the best policy, right? Thank you for stopping by! Enjoy the tour.


    • I’m reading a book right now, and I thought for sure the author would kill a character I LOVE, and I was going to be really pissed off if she did. Instead, she received a threatening note. WHEW! Dodged a bullet on that one! Apparently, this author has trouble killing off fictional characters, too! Thank goodness!

      Honestly, I don’t understand when authors kill off beloved characters just because they can. Readers become invested in their characters, and they become “real” to us. When J.K. Rowling killed Fred, I cried buckets. Did it make sense? Of course. But it hurt down deep.

  2. I like that you don’t easily kill off characters!! I mean, I understand inside my head that there will be death, but if I have invested a part of my time and life in getting to know a character, only to have the author kill them off, it is like a literal death for me! Accepting the need for death does not make it easier and it is actually comforting to know that the author feels that also. I am so enjoying this new series, the Rocky Mountain Courage series, and am already anxiously awaiting the next book. Thank you for your transparency and honesty on something that does matter to readers.

  3. I love reading book by Elizabeth Godard. I get them from the library & my 91 year old mother reads the book first (she can read several books a day & can recall the story years later) then I also read the book, but somewhat slower. We love the suspense. Thank again for sharing your talent.

  4. I love thriller books like yours that keep you at the edge of your seat. And also not wanting to put the book down.
    The cover of your book is beautiful


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