Hello, friends, let me tell you about myself, why I write, and why you might want to read my books.
My name is Elisabeth Zguta. I grew up in a small town in Berkshire County, Massachusetts. Since then I’ve lived in many places; currently, I live in the Memphis area. I am an Indie author and publisher. I like bizarre things, Gothic horror stories, and suspense thrillers. Who doesn’t?
On the surface, I am an average American woman who decided to write fiction. But in many ways, I am far from the ordinary. As with all of us, my circumstances and choices in life have created my uniqueness.
Raised Catholic in a large family, my soul had an impression left on it by the grade school rituals. If you relate to that, we already have much in common, and if not, perhaps reading my stories can help you understand our proverbial upbringing. Please understand, my books are far from religious, but in the Curses & Secrets series the siblings are Catholic, and it does bring overtones of guilt to their personalities.
My Catholic experience is not of nuns beating children or of priests fondling boys. I was fortunate to have been exposed to close family members who were of the collar, and they were the best members of our humanity, loving and kind.
I lived a sheltered childhood until the 70s. Then it happened—it was as if a dam had broken.
My generation, the then younger Pepsi generation, began to try all kinds of new things. We had fresh ideas about equality—even white kids wore fros. We were cool, wore clogs, and followed the peacefulness of the hippie generation but without the communes.
We were “searching for a heart of gold,” and we sang “joy to the world,” “lean on me,” as we were “reeling in the years,” and “carried on.” Some may recognize the lyrics, something more we have in common.
I made mistakes. Married young, I soon found myself on my own with two children who depended on me. Still in my early twenties, I was motivated to make something of myself. I went back to school and then began job hunting. In particular, I remember one interview for a programmer’s position. The manager sat behind his desk looking at me, and he said with a straight face, “Others are applying for the job, too. Men who have families to support.”
Outrage simmered inside of me, but sadly, I remained silent. All my emotions remained stuffed inside. Things were different then.
Eventually, I landed a job and provided for my family, I was independent and gained back my self-worth. I had been through a lot and convinced myself that I did not need a man in my life. Then unexpectantly, I met my husband. Kismet. If you believe in fate, that’s what happened the day we met. We have been happily married for over thirty years. It was not always roses—we worked hard—and we raised my two children together as ours and added two more to the family.
Today, I am a proud mother of four adult children and one young adult grandson. They are all independent, self-reliant, and discovering their unique paths; I would not have it any other way. They follow their consciences every day and are contributors to society, not takers. They, in a nutshell, are the success story of my life.
Over the years, I learned the necessary skills to keep a family running smoothly while I worked various jobs outside of the home—from credit analyst to buyer to new product development. I enjoy cooking, being outdoors and gardening when I can, and listening to music. I like reading, researching, and writing. I taught myself to do things; nothing came as a natural talent, it was a work of love.
Vivid memories, good and sad, fill my life file and it’s the experiences I encountered that guide the colors I use while painting the characters’ motivations in my writing. I never create a character in the likeness of a real person, but instead, use my understanding to style someone new, but who could be real.
I believe that we never stop learning the craft and that the ability to learn new things is, in fact, the critical factor to a thriving in life.
Curious, that is me. My appetite for knowledge is insatiable. My husband jokes that I ask “why” like a toddler. One of my sons pokes fun and says I should be a travel agent because I point things out about the history of places wherever we go. All in good fun.
I am young in mind and heart because I continually look for answers. I know that no matter how much a person learns and experiences in life, there is still so much more unknown … We will never find all the answers, so enjoy the journey. (Swoosh. Star Trek music, please)
In college, I dreamed of writing a book, but then life happened. For years I had no extra time to write and didn’t even give it a thought.
So why did I begin to write?
In 2010 a family tragedy happened—we lost my nephew. RIP Dana. It proved to be a test of faith for the family and a horrific lesson about the fragility of life. So many unresolved feelings surfaced. I thought I would burst.
That is when I began to write, to give my emotions a place to flow. The freedom of expression I experienced was something I had never thought possible. It was exhilarating. I soon decided to change my life and write full-time.
I am thankful for the wonderful readers who were patient in the beginning as I honed my skills. And yes, writing is a continuous learning process. I will never stop learning techniques to bring a story to life.
Three years after I began my new path in writing, my first novel was finished, Breaking Cursed Bonds, and it was precisely that . . . Characters who were trying to break the emotional bonds carried around by guilt and fear. Two years after that a second book, Exposing Secret Sins. Another year another book, Seeking Redemption.
I enjoy writing fiction; it is an avenue taken to deal with the monsters in the dark corners of our lives. The characters are not real, but the fictional situations and the responses could be real. There are three siblings and three books in the Curses & Secrets series.
Many readers will relate to the plot and enjoy the unfolding of the family story in the Curses & Secrets books. Others may like the psychological suspense, others the paranormal aspect. Some scenes will satisfy those who prefer the horror genre.
Who knows, someday I might develop the fourth book in the series. A fan asked, and I hate to disappoint.
This November, however, I am releasing my fourth novel but in a new storyline: In the Woods: Murder In The North East Kingdom.
A new character takes the stage, Samantha Tremblay, a Vermont Forest Ranger who discovers a dead body and searches for the killer—and herself.
In all my books I bring a taste of Native American culture to the storyline. I have always been amazed by the profound thoughts behind the folklore, the respect for nature unveiled in the stories, and the desire of the culture to interact with mother earth.
The tribes bridge our part of the world, of the here and now, with that of the ancients in the other world.
It is crazy and yet thought-provoking to think of time and place from the Native American beliefs and point of view. I hope readers will appreciate the added cultural element laced throughout some of my books.
Today, I couldn’t stop writing if I tried. Writing gives me an outlet, and at the same time, has been a springboard to so many other new things in my life.
Because of the writing, I do much research, one of my favorite endeavors. I read a lot and learn more every day about many things. I discover more about publishing and try to convert my marketing knowledge into work with results. It’s a tough field, but if you are writing, the rest follows.
Not a day goes by without learning something different.
I cannot begin to tell you about all the things that happened in my life, and I’m not inclined to write a memoir. Hopefully, through my writing, some of my thoughts provoked from my experiences are revealed in my work, and we can share those emotions virtually.
Every day I thank God for my family, my blessings, and my struggles as well. Without them, I would not be the person I am today. I am glad to meet new readers and hope that I can bring some entertainment into your life. Thanks for listening to my rant.