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Erica Vetsch | 20 Questions: THE GENTLEMAN SPY

September 30, 2020

1–What’s the name of your latest release? 

THE GENTLEMAN SPY, book two in the Serendipity & Secrets series released in July, and in just a few more days, I have a novella releasing in the Joy to the World Collection that will also be part of the Serendipity & Secrets ‘universe.’

2–What is it about? 

The Gentleman Spy is about Lady Charlotte and His Grace, Marcus, The Duke of Haverly. Marcus needs a wife to maintain his cover as a spy for the Crown, and Charlotte is looking for a way out of her dysfunctional family’s home.  They enter into a not-so-convenient marriage, while Marcus tries to keep his clandestine work a secret, and Charlotte tries to understand the complex man she’s married. He’s chasing assassins, and she’s chasing him!

3–What word best describes your heroine? 

Crusader. Charlotte has a strong sense of justices, and she is determined to right the wrongs she encounters.

4–What makes your hero irresistible?

He’s a cloak-and-dagger spy while also being a chivalrous, innately kind Regency Duke. He’s naïve about romantic relationships, and yet manages to make Charlotte fall in love with him with little effort.

5–Who are the people your main characters turn to when they need help? 

They each have mentors in their lives, Marcus has his boss, Sir Noel St. Clair, and Charlotte has a new mentor, Aunt Dolly, a former prostitute and madam who has taken on the task of rescuing London prostitutes. Marcus has an employee/colleague who has some unusual capabilities when it comes to spy craft, and he’s got a friend who helps him with the relationship issues. Ultimately though, Marcus and Charlotte are people of faith, and they ask God for help.

6–What do you love about the setting of your book? 

Regency England. Sigh. Beautiful countryside, rich history, the juxtaposition of the aristocracy and the commoners and the tensions that brings, a world of such precise rules of behavior, but peopled with complicated souls who break those strictures. The Regency was a time of great excess, great heroism, and great change in England, which lends itself to a complex tapestry of possibilities when it comes to writing fiction.

7–Are you a plotter (follow an outline) or a pantster (write by the seat of your pants)?

I started out as a pantser, finger-painting my way through stories and having a ball doing it. Then I started plotting my stories because my publisher required a chapter by chapter synopsis. Before I knew it, I was a hard-core plotter.

8–What is an ideal writing day for you? 

I usually write in the afternoons, and I usually write in a coffee shop. With COVID restrictions, my coffee shop trips are on hold, but I still write in the afternoons. I spend an hour or so of my writing time working on marketing things like blog posts, email, interviews, etc. When I get down to writing, I set a minimum of 1000 words, but a good day is 2000 words for me.

9–Do you listen to music while you write, need total silence, or do you have the TV on?

I pop in the earbuds and listen to Pandora. Their Instrumental Movie Scores channel is my go-to. I can write in silence, but I could never write with the TV on. I would be too distracted!

10– How do you approach research? 

With alacrity! I ADORE research. I have been known to fall down the rabbit hole of research and be reluctant to surface again. I read fiction on my e-reader, but I need print books for my historical research because I flag pages with sticky notes and refer back to them often as I write.

11–What is your publishing journey story? 

I began writing about fifteen years ago, putting into words the stories I had spun in my head for years. Twelve years ago, I received my first writing contract while at a national convention of writers. What a thrill to hear them call my name in front of so many industry professionals and friends! I’ve continued to write for several different publishers, and the book I am currently writing will be #41 in my publishing career. I have been so blessed!

12–Do you have critique partners/writing groups you want to give a shout-out to? 

I blog with the best bunch of writing women in the world at They are mentors, supporters, confidants, advisors, and dear friends.

13–What’re the most frustrating things about being an author? 

Waiting. That’s the worst for me. Waiting to hear back from an agent, waiting for contest results, waiting for a new book t come out. Before I was published, it was waiting for that call, that one ‘yes’ that would mean I had finally secured a contract.

But there’s benefit to waiting, too. Waiting gives you time to learn and better your writing skills. Waiting gives you time to make new writing friends, to network, to understand the industry. Waiting gives you the experience that you will need all along the way in this industry. Nothing changes so quickly or moves so slowly as publishing.

14–What’s your favorite scent?

Lilac. It evokes sunny spring days, lavender bunches of blossoms, Great Aunt Ruth’s house. Life after long winters here in Minnesota!

15–What movie will you watch no matter what if it’s on TV? 

Alfred Hitchcock’s Rear Window with Jimmy Stewart and Grace Kelly. Anytime, anywhere.

16–Do you like breakfast, lunch, or dinner best?

Dinner, especially Friday night dinner, because for more than fifteen years, that has been date night with my husband. It doesn’t matter where we go or what we eat, it matters that we are alone together.

17–What’s one thing you wish you knew more about? 

At the moment, I’m diving deeply into the early police forces in England, the Bow Street Runners, the River Police, and the Metropolitan Police.

18–What’s the silliest thing you’ve recently done?

I broke out some pretty terrible dance moves in my kitchen the other day, just to make my son and husband laugh.

19–What can readers expect from you next? 

THE INDEBTED EARL, book three in the Serendipity & Secrets series releases March 23, 2021! It’s about Marcus Haverly’s little sister and a sea-captain-turned-earl who marry for convenience and find themselves embroiled in a smuggling operation off the Devonshire coast!

20–How can readers reach you?

You can find me at where you can sign up for my newsletter and keep up to date on all my bookish news, as well as follow/befriend me on Facebook at where I spend Way. Too. Much. Time!


Serendipity & Secrets #2

The Gentleman Spy

He only wanted a duchess for a day–but she’s determined to make it a marriage for life

When his father and older brother suddenly pass away, the new Duke of Haverly is saddled with a title he never expected to bear. To thwart the plans of his scheming family, the duke impulsively marries a wallflower. After all, she’s meek and mild; it should be easy to sequester her in the country and get on with his life–as a secret agent for the Crown.

But his bride has other ideas. She’s determined to take her place not only as his duchess but as his wife. As a duchess, she can use her position to help the lowest of society–the women forced into prostitution because they have no skills or hope. Her endeavors are not met favorably in society, nor by her husband who wishes she’d remain in the background as he ordered.

Can the duke succeed in relegating her to the sidelines of his life? When his secrets are threatened with exposure, will his new wife be an asset or a liability?

Romance Historical [Kregel Publications, On Sale: July 28, 2020, Paperback / e-Book, ISBN: 9780825446184 / eISBN: 9780825476013]

About Erica Vetsch

Erica Vetsch

Even though Erica Vetsch has set aside her career teaching history to high school students in order to homeschool her own children, but her love of history hasn’t faded. Erica’s favorite books are historical novels and history books, and one of her greatest thrills is stumbling across some obscure historical factoid that makes her imagination leap. She’s continually amazed at how God has allowed her to use her passion for history, romance, and daydreaming to craft historical romances that entertain readers and glorify Him. Whenever she’s not following flights of fancy in her fictional world, Erica is the company bookkeeper for her family’s lumber business, a mother of two terrific teens, wife to a man who is her total opposite and yet her soul mate, and an avid museum patron.


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