After losing her father, Emma Bennett moves to her aunt’s small town of Westport to finish out her senior year of high school. Emma wants to forget the pain and loss of the past few weeks, and finds relief in the company of Ben Parker—a local boy who she has an instant attraction and uncanny connection with. When Ben seems a little too preoccupied with other responsibilities and has no time for her, Emma turns to the town’s hottest flirt—Lucas Crandon, for affection. Unfortunately, she realizes a little too late that sometimes bad boys, really can be bad for you.
Life as an undercover agent for the Afterworld’s Bureau of Investigation isn’t an easy job. When Ben Parker finds his soul mate, Emma Bennett in a small town, he finds himself forced to choose between doing his job or rekindling a relationship with the love of his existence. After Ben is notified that a notorious criminal immortal is loose somewhere near Westport, he realizes that his love life will just have to wait. There is a criminal to apprehend before he can have his girl.
When lives are at stake and immortals are on the loose, can two soul mates find their happy ever after?
What was the inspiration for your story?
The concept of Ben Parker’s character came to me a few years ago. I had a very visual dream about a train derailing. Railcars tumbled off a ridge, landing on top of each other in a ravine. There was a young man on the train that was untouched by the accident. Once everything settled, he pulled victims from the crash site and escorted them to heaven. I ended up writing a short story about this, and eventually, Ben’s character came to life.
What kept you going throughout the writing process?
Initially, writing was just a hobby I did it in my spare time. But after a friend invited me to join his writing group, I began to take it more seriously and set writing goals. That really helped me stay on track knowing I had to finish a set word count, by a certain date. I also had a lot of support from my family and friends. They encouraged me to keep going any time I felt like giving up.
Who is your most meaningful character and why?
That’s a really tough question… like asking a mom to pick her favorite child!
I really enjoy all of my characters (even the dark ones), but if I had to pick just one, I’d choose Ben as the most meaningful. He spent decades searching for the love of his existence, so his dedication and perseverance is remarkable to me. As an agent in the Afterworld’s Bureau of Investigation, he proved himself loyal and committed. Overall, he’s just a good guy—someone you’d want on your side.
How has this story touched your life?
In Aftermath, Emma Bennett experiences the loss of a parent and is faced with moving to another state to finish high school. I had a similar experience growing up, although I was much younger than Emma. Nonetheless, I could relate to the feeling of abandonment and starting over that Emma faces.
What motivated you to start writing?
I enjoyed writing ever since high school when my teacher challenged me to be more descriptive. She didn’t want to read that the front door was red; she wanted to see the shade. It was very motivating to me, to slow things down a bit and detail the setting.