Guest of Honor – Ruthie Knox

Posted by at Jan 31, 2013 6:00 am

Welcome back guest RUTHIE KNOX with her fantastic new novella/eBook, HOW TO MISBEHAVE … I know it’s fantastic because I read it. It was fast, fun and a really heartwarming couple who were pretty sexy and hot at the same time. I really loved them! Read on, as Ruthie tells you more about her view on happy endings!

Thanks for having me back to visit, Plotmonkeys!

The first time I was here, nearly a year ago, I talked about epilogues. Namely, my distaste for them. I felt as though epilogues were often used to put a great big bow around the happily ever after, and I said that as someone who lives in the happily ever after – as a married woman with a son, in other words – I crave more realism in these peeks at the hero and heroine down the road.

“The happy ending is, for me, one moment,” I wrote. “It’s a respite. After a few hundred pages of conflict and strife, the hero and heroine deserve a few minutes to breathe and rest easy in the comfortable space they’ve made through their mutual disclosures, their lifting of burdens, and their hot smexin’. But nobody gets to live in the happy-ever-after moment forever. Not even romance novel characters. Being in love is hard work.”

After my visit here, I kept thinking about the whole question of epilogues, and eventually I began to change my mind. Sort of. I can see why readers often crave them, and I’ve even come to believe that some books need them – particularly stories that take place over a short span of time. I’ve actually written two epilogues now (not too goopy, I hope), and I’m open to the possibility of writing more.

But I remain fascinated with this idea of the ending of a story as a respite rather than an open door into the hero and heroine’s golden and glorious future.

My latest release, How To Misbehave, is a 100-page story that takes place over just a few days, and so – probably inevitably – it ends with a “happy for now” moment instead of a “happy ever after.” Thus far, readers have seemed satisfied with the way the story ends. But I’m not.

I want to keep going – to delve into the story of what happens to this couple, Amber and Tony, after they find intimacy, trust, and happiness together. Because I know they will get more than they have bargained for. They will get love and companionship, yes, and these are no small thing – but they will also get marriage, spiritual growth, family trauma, stress, financial difficulty, and pain. They will find out what it’s like to have three children and a business that you must put before your own needs, how those things can consume you, and how you have to fight to keep your marriage alive and at the core of what you value, or you’ll lose it.

I so want to write about those struggles, too. Because to my mind, that is romance. I would even argue that it is the same kind of romance as the romance that brings the couple together in the first place.

In the happy-ever-after, there is happiness, yes. But there is conflict and tension, hot sex and fail-sex, good communication and poor communication. And while I don’t like to imagine my characters backsliding after their story ends – unlearning the lessons the book has gone to such pains to teach them – life carries with it so many new lessons to be learned. I can’t help but want to write about those, too.

What do you guys think? Are you ever curious about what happens to a favorite couple post–happy-ever-after, or do you want to imagine them apart from all the ordinary struggles of life? Feel free to disagree with me! I’m interested in how you feel about what you read, what you want, what you hate. Knock yourselves out. ☺


What woman can resist a hot man in a hard hat? Beloved author Ruthie Knox kicks off her new Camelot series with this deliciously sexy original novella, in which a good girl learns how to misbehave . . . with all her heart.

As program director for the Camelot Community Center, Amber Clark knows how to keep her cool. That is, until a sudden tornado warning forces her to take shelter in a darkened basement with a hunk of man whose sex appeal green lights her every fantasy. With a voice that would melt chocolate, he asks her if she is okay. Now she’s hot all over and wondering: How does a girl make a move?

Building contractor Tony Mazzara was just looking to escape nature’s fury. Instead, he finds himself all tangled up with lovely Amber. Sweet and sexy, she’s ready to unleash her wild side. Their mutual desire reaches a fever pitch and creates a storm of its own—unexpected, powerful, and unforgettable. But is it bigger than Tony can handle? Can he let go of painful memories and let the force of this remarkable woman show him a future he never dreamed existed?

Read More About How To Misbehave
– including BUY LINKS at all major retailers!

Ruthie is generously giving away 3 eCopies of HOW TO MISBEHAVE to one lucky commenter below! Check back Sunday for winners.


63 thoughts on “Guest of Honor – Ruthie Knox

  1. 1
    DebraG says:

    Sounds like an amazing book. Great cover. Thanks for sharing.

  2. 2
    Eileen R says:

    Oh I agree with you on this subject. Karen Stivali wrote Meant to Be and Holding On which were about a couple finding their way to each other and then about the aftermath once they did. Both of them unique in their stories but we got an inside look on how it isn’t always easy to hold onto the love you found. Its challenging and miscommunication can derail a good thing. Epilogues are good sometimes to forward to the next story in a series or tie things up with minor characters. I do like them in my stories but I can see why in some stories they aren’t needed.

  3. 3
    Liza says:

    Welcome back Ruthie! Loved How to Misbehave so much. I do like to revisit couples to see how they are doing.

  4. 4
    Princess Fi says:

    One of my favourite tropes is the reunion trope. These often presuppose a happy ending in the past and something going wrong forcing them to rebuild the relationship. :violin: A like marriage in trouble stories too. :fryingpan: But I admit that on a really stressful day, I want the fairy tale with the assumed Happy Ever After. I don’t want doubts because that’s what we live with in the real world. :snoopy:

    • 4.1
      Ruthie says:

      That makes sense to me. I think that’s the risk with these stories that take place after the “happy ending” — that you’ll ruin the happy glow. And yet I’m so compelled, this time… :-)

  5. 5
    katie says:

    Sounds like a great book…welcome to the jungle!

  6. 6
    Sue G. says:

    I already bought this book, so don’t include me in the contest.

    I usually like to find out what happens in the future. Unless it is in a series, and that can be answered in the next book.

    • 6.1
      Ruthie says:

      That makes sense, Sue. I think in this case I’m imagining that the relationship itself is the series. I’m not sure I’ve read a set of stories like that without the overarching anchor of, say, a suspense plot — something like Eve & Roark or Marie Force’s series with the senator and the police officer.

  7. 7
    Linda says:

    Sounds like a very interesting book to read. I have read some of her other books and they were great…

  8. 8
    Philomena D says:

    Welcome back Ruthie! Story sounds interesting!

  9. 9
    Colleen says:

    I will admit to being curious sometimes about a couple… wanting to know a bit more afterwards… but that usually happens when an author leaves me wondering about something like if they are expecting a baby… what was it and what did they name it…

    • 9.1
      Ruthie says:

      I think my curiosity goes much deeper than yours, Colleen. I want to know what they argued about when they were all sleep-deprived after the baby was born. :-)

  10. 10
    CrystalGB says:

    Ruthie’s book sounds great. Love the cover.

  11. 11
    Brenda Hyde says:

    I always want to know more, especially if I love the couple, but then don’t we ALWAYS want something we love to go on forever? Sometimes I think we can also use our imagination to form our own idea of what happened.

    I’ve also loved when an author releases a short story involving the characters at some point– I guess that would be an epilogue but in a different form.

    As far as what I want to know? Everything. LOL I’ve always thought that a couple who seems as if they are perfect with NO struggles is either hiding their frustrations or just apathetic, or in a rut, perhaps. I’m trying to teach my 18 year old right now that it’s okay to argue and disagree but just learn to do it correctly– not being nasty or saying things just to hurt the person.

    • 11.1
      Ruthie says:

      Yeah, I guess we do always want to know more! But sometimes there’s no real “story” left — and other times there is. :-)

  12. 12
    Moran says:

    Hey Ruthie,

    First of all since I already won a copy of How To Misbehave pleas don’t don’t include me in the contest.

    Second, I have to say that I really agree with all the things you said.
    I would love to read more about post–happy-ever-after and how they handle real life together.
    I know that we all read romance books in order to get a HEA but I still think we can get it with more real life issues since for me reading about perfect people all the time can get boring. I’m not looking for depressing and sad stories but a few bumps in the road can be a good thing as long as it’s not over the top.
    One of the reasons I love reading books in a series is that you get to see characters from previous books and learn more about them and their life together

  13. 13
    Janet says:

    Hi Ruthie! How to Misbehave sounds good. I am on the fence about epilouges – I have read some that were great (just enough information to satisfy) and then others that raised more questions and had me wondering if the epilouge was for the same book I had just finished. Finding a good balance between the two must be a challange.

    • 13.1
      Ruthie says:

      Thanks, Janet!

      Yeah, I find them challenging. Usually I try to focus on solidifying whatever character arc might have been left unfinished — really showing that the hero or heroine (or both) really DOES have the tools to make it through X or Y problem.

  14. 14
    Quilt Lady says:

    Sounds fabulous and I love the cover.

  15. 15
    Karen C says:

    Hi Ruthie! It depends on the book for me. There are many times I’d like to know what happens to the happy couple and, therefore, like that there’s an epilogue (or a sequel). But there are also books that I’ve enjoyed and I’m quite content with it ending where it does. Oh, and then there are the times where the story ends and I’m not ready, so I end up yelling! Hmmm. Yup – it depends on the book. :scratch:

  16. 16
    Marie says:

    Your book sounds like a great read, Ruthie. Love the cover. ;)
    Thank you for the giveaway!! :yourock

  17. 17
    chey says:

    Sounds like a great book!
    I’m almost always curious about what happens to a favorite couple post–happy-ever-after.

  18. 18
    Ellen says:

    Hi Ruthie,

    I do like epilogues. I like getting a peak at the future of the characters.
    Great discussion question.

  19. 19
    Donna says:

    I think sometimes they use epiloogues to end a series after you read what happens I think the author feels that’s the end I will write about something else.
    YOur book sounds good will have to go to amazin and look it up…


  20. 20
    Lisa B says:

    I love epilogues but has to be right for the book. No idea how you figure that out as a author. If you need one or not. lol

    Don’t enter me I’ve already read and reviewed it. Loved it and can’t wait for more.

    Lisa B

  21. 21
    donnas says:

    Great cover, and it sounds great.

    I always want to know what happens next. Its part of the reason I like series, even ones where the main characters change is great. When the old mains pop in and out and we get to the hear the secondaries story.

  22. 22
    Eileen A-W says:

    I like to know what happens after the couple gets together, or what you call the happy ever after. I hate leaving a book let alone not know what happens next to the characters. I feel like this is what you were getting at with your re-thinking about epilogues.

    Your book sounds good and makes me want to read it. :reading: Will probably do so at some point, after my tbr pile shrinks a bit.

  23. 23
    judy says:

    :threecheers Looks like a winner. Love the cover. :flag: :flag:

  24. 24
    Kathleen O says:

    I like to know about the HEA after the books ends. That is why I like series or sequel books.. I get to see what happens to a favorite couple..

    I think this book is going to be great read.

  25. 25
    Jessie Llewellyn says:

    I’ve read other books by Ruthie Knox & have loved them. I cannot wait to read this book. Thanks for the post!

  26. 26
    sharlene Wegner says:

    I could go either way, with or without the epilogue. Leaving them with the HEA is fine with me. If they show up in another book in the series, I hope they are still happy! Can’t wait to read your novella & I love the cover art!

  27. 27
    LSUReader says:

    :dancingmonk: Hi, Ruthie–Sounds like another good one. Thanks for
    hanging out in the jungle today! And add me to the group
    of curious readers who want to know about the h/h post story.

  28. 28
    Sherie says:

    I love reading series where we see the happily ever afters of prior couples. But I agree in real life there is pain and struggle besides the joy and happiness. It is nice to see that side as well.

  29. 29
    Barbara Elness says:

    Yes, I always wonder what happens to my favorite couples after the HEA. I always enjoy epilogues where they’ve been together several years and have settled in to a long life together. Seeing them in related stories as secondary characters is always fun too. I don’t mind hearing that they’ve had struggles, as long as I know they’ll get through them.

  30. 30
    Rachel Donovan says:

    Sounds like so much fun! Can’t wait to read!! Thanks for the chance to win ;)

  31. 31
    shari bartholomew says:

    Sounds like a quick fun read!

  32. 32
    Tanja says:

    I desperately want your book. The weather forecast says that it will be cold next week and I will need something to keep me warm :) Beside a cup of hot cocoa with marshmallows.

  33. 33
    Pat L. says:

    I love epilogues; if a book doesnt have one, I am disappointed.

    The book sounds great. Thanks for the giveaway.

  34. 34
    Anne says:

    I like epilogues a lot more than cliffhanger endings.

  35. 35
    erinf1 says:

    Thanks for the fun post and congrats to Ruthie on the new release! I’m such a big fan of Ruthie… I’d read her grocery list if she’d publish it! Can’t wait to get my hands on this book :)

  36. 36

    That is a very good and tricky question. Though there are many times I crave to know what happens with the couples and characters I fall in love with, I want some of the happily ever after to carry over. In real life happy ever after doesn’t always excist and the reason why I read romance books. Fantasy isnt real or scifi yet we crave and read it.

    • 36.1
      Ruthie says:

      It’s so tricky, isn’t it? I think balancing fantasy against reality is one of the trickiest things about writing contemporary romance. I want as much reality as possible … without losing the fantasy.

  37. 37
    Jolene A says:

    Love the cover and I think this sounds like a great read! :D

  38. 38
    TRICIA says:

    I added it to my wish list on Amazon and B&N!!!!!!! I can’t wait to read it……

  39. 39
    Maria Ramirez Esquivel says:

    Looking forward to reading How to Misbehave! Its on my TBR list. Thanks for the giveway.

  40. 40
    Nikki H says:

    I loved About Last Night and Room at the Inn, and I have Ride with Me ready to go on my kindle. I’m looking forward to How to Misbehave, too!

  41. 41
    Fedora says:

    Ruthie, I love finding out what happens after the HEA; I think it’s part of reality, and I find it so very encouraging/hopeful to see how some fictional couples tackle the rough spots and tough times that we also run into in real life. Thanks for sharing some of those in stories! Looking forward to reading more of your writing!

  42. 42
    Jen B. says:

    I have heard wonderful things about this book. Thanks for the giveaway.

  43. 43
    Christine A. says:

    Congrats on the release Ruthie! It sounds like another great book and I can’t wait to read it. Hope you have a great weekend.

  44. 44
    Kim says:

    Congratulations on the new release.

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